HOW TO PREPARE YOUR HOME FOR PROFESSIONAL PHOTOGRAPHY

Here you are. You’ve made a decision to list your house for sale.  The photos of your home will be seen by many online potential buyers so it is very important that your listing stands out.  Good photos will help you attract buyers to your listing.

Below are a few simple tips on how to help you to get ready for a professional photo shoot.

EXTERIOR

Have the lawn trimmed and tidy up your gardens (weeding, leaf removal, trim hedges, etc.). 

Remove any seasonal/holiday decorations.

Clean your roof and gutters.

Remove all empty planters or fill them up with new plants. Here are some ideas for year round containers.

No garbage bins in front of your house even if they match the colour of your house.  

Replace outdoor lights that are not functioning in case photographer decides to do twilight photography.

Make your front door inviting. Why paint your front door a basic colour when you can make your house more memorable with something a little more interesting? After all, your front door is the first impression some gets of your home. Here are some front door colour suggestions.

A new welcome mat is always a good idea. 

BEFORE PHOTOGRAPHER ARRIVES

Close the garage doors.

Remove any cars from the driveway (you are selling your home not advertising your vehicle). 

If there is a swimming pool or hot tub, check to ensure there are no debris floating on the surface. 

Open the umbrellas on patio sets and ensure  the chair cushions on and straight.

INTERIOR 

Number one on the list is DECLUTTER….DECLUTTER….DECLUTTER!  Less is always better.  Your home will appear larger and more open when you minimize your furniture and remove any unnecessary stuff from floors, tables, walls, counters, closets. Remove things such as kid’s toys, magazines, mail, magnets on the fridge, small appliances.

DEPERSONALIZE your place! This is the second biggest step in preparing your home for sale. What does it mean?  In simple term it is removing your personal taste from your home decor so that buyers can imagine themselves living in the home.  The absolute most important thing to start with during your depersonalization is the removal of personal family photos, prized certificates and diplomas.   

Repaint walls to neutral colour.  They will make your home appear bigger. You might think that your lime green bedroom looks bright and cheery, however, not too many buyers will find that appealing.  It is always safe to go with a neutral colour and add extra colour with small accents such as pillows, vases, artwork etc. Here are some go-to-neutral colour ideas.

If repainting is not in your budget, touch up the current paint and cover the wall’s imperfections. 

Ensure that all the light bulbs are fully functioning. If your house is dark, perhaps increase the light bulbs wattage.  Stocking up on extra bulbs is also a good idea.

Organize your drawers and closets. If messy or crowded, it will give an impression that your home has not enough storage space.

Deep clean your home.  Give a good scrub from the floors to the cobwebs on the ceiling.  This includes scrubbing all toilets, bathtubs, appliances, placing clean towels in all the bathrooms, and cleaning rugs.  Consider getting a professional to do the big tasks.  

Eliminate any sources of bad odours.  Find the root cause of the smell. Dirty garbage can? Cat litter?  Don’t try to mask it with powerful fragrances that some could be sensitive to… a lemon scented cleaner can be a good choice.  The two most common sources of difficult and offensive odors are pets and cigarettes, both of which are not easy to get rid of.

Remove any items from under the beds which could be potentially seen in photos.

Consider placing fresh cut flowers throughout the house. 

BEFORE PHOTOGRAPHER ARRIVES

Turn all the lights and lamps ON. 

Leave the ceilings fans OFF.

Turn the TV and computer screens OFF.

Open all blinds or window treatments to let the light in.

Place shoes and coats in the closet.

Hide pet beds, food and water bowls.

Remember, when viewing your listing online you don’t get a second chance to make a first impression…..

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