According to a Wall Street Journal Article, “Subjects who looked at online home listings found that more than 95% of users viewed the first photo, the one that shows the exterior of the home, for a total of 20 seconds”. “Without an eye-catching photo, the battle is lost before it begins.” Home buyers spend about 60% of their time on photos, 20% on the property description and 20% on the real-estate agents’ remarks section.

The photo on the left is straight out of a professional level camera. The photo on the right is after that same photo went through post-processing.

If you really want to sell your home quickly, but are not interested in lowering the price, consider professional photos. Professional photographers with a SLR or single-lens-reflex professional style cameras give photographers more control over what they capture and consistently produce higher-quality images. They also cost more than point-and-shoot cameras and the learning curve to produce high quality real estate photos can be difficult. A better idea, ask your broker or agent to bring in a professional photographer.

In the photography world, all professional photographers are not the same. There are portrait photographers, wedding photographers, landscape photographers, but for the subject at hand, consider a professional real estate photographer. The requirements for taking portraits are very different from real estate photography. One of the requirements is not only a high quality SLR, but also a very high quality wide angle lens. Lens that are “Fish Eye” or exhibit a lot of distortion are not desirable for real estate photography. The photos should also show the home from a marketing perspective more so than an artistic perspective.

For the professional real estate photographer, the work is just beginning after the initial photo shoot. Post processing of each image is required to really bring out the best of each shot. When required, a technique called “HDR” is used to capture an extended range of light and dark areas to bring out the dark shadows of a room as well as showing the view out of a brightly lit window or doorway.

At Heritage Real Estate Sales, the value of professional photography has been fully recognized. Virtually every home that is listed with this office has the photos taken by a professional photographer. You can see the difference as you browse through their listings at: The Listings for Heritage Real Estate Sales

The photos above are the work of Mike Covington, a professional real estate photographer. More of his work can be seen at

Next week: A few case studies about the relationship between getting higher prices for your home and using a professional photographer