Great real estate photography and beautiful home staging can make thousands of dollars difference in the price you are offered and take weeks off how quickly your house sells.
Putting the effort or investment into incredible photography and a professionally staged home is one of the best investments you can make with selling your home. This post will cover staging and photo tips so you can get top dollar for your home.
Real Estate Photography and Staging to Sell Your Home in Baton Rouge
Before The Photos Are Taken and The House Is Shown…
I don’t know about you, but I am not an expert photographer. I bought a fancy digital camera, and still don’t know how to use it. The best advice I can give is leave photography and staging to the professionals, and they are usually two different people. Your photographer may not be the best with furniture placement or accessorizing, while your stager probably doesn’t know how to utilize the light to take pictures maximizing a room’s space. These two people, working together, is what will get interest in your property and get you the highest offer.
As They Say, A Picture Says A Thousand Words…
Why is great photography important? Well, most people start their home search online. When your realtor lists your house on the MLS and other platforms, that is what will get people to schedule showings. We all have seen poor photos on listings, where you say, “I can’t BELIEVE they used that shot!”. Some people take photos themselves, while others rely on their agent.
Some agents have talent with a camera, but nothing compares to hiring a professional photographer. They will have tricks and the proper equipment like tripods, wide angle lenses, and know how much natural light to let in to get the absolute best pictures possible.
Photographers are there to take pictures, not to stage. Don’t expect them to move furniture around, clean up your house, or accessorize. They are there to take the best photos of what it currently looks like.
Get it “Magazine Pretty” With a Professional Stager
Some people think they don’t need staging and that it is only used for really expensive houses in big cities. This is not true, and staging has a huge impact on your ability to sell your home successfully.
People buy things based on emotion. Houses are no exception. You want to create a neutral environment while making the viewer feel like they are in their own home. Some stagers refurnish entire homes, while others focus on several key rooms. Your strategy will depend on what is already there and your budget, but the main room strategy is most common.
Depending on your current furniture situation, a stager can bring in many pieces or replace and re-purpose what you already have to be more aesthetically pleasing. The end goal of staging is to maximize the perceived value of the home. Now we will get into our top four tips for if you are doing it yourself.
Tip #1: Declutter
Remove all clutter and personal possessions/photos before you take pictures or show your home to buyers. It can make people feel intrusive and subconsciously make them want to leave. It is much harder to view a home as your own when someone else’s family pictures are hanging on the walls. This isn’t how you want them t feel!
Tip #2: Say Goodbye To All Personal Items
Just like the color of paint used for a remodel, you want to remove anything that is not neutral. Putting away photos, awards, bills as well as religious and political items will make people feel more comfortable. You don’t want to give anyone an excuse to not offer on your property. Make people feel as if they could live there. They need to be able to easily imagine themselves in the space, and that can prove difficult when looking at a wall of your family photos or a prayer if they believe something different. In addition, packing up unnecessary items and personal effects will help when the moving day arrives.
Tip #3: Don’t Neglect the Outside Areas
Curb appeal is critical. For both photography and viewing purposes, you will want to spend time fixing up the outside of your home and landscaping. Don’t leave your cars in the driveway, instead park them down the street.
This will allow the focus to be on your home in the photos and will make people feel like they are pulling into their own driveway as opposed to someone else’s. You should also put away all personal items and children’s toys that are left outside. They say people decide if buying is a possibility within the first 5 seconds of looking at a property for the first time.
This is why it pays to clean up the front yard, plant a few flowers and refresh the front porch. Landscaping is the frame to your pictures and should showcase the house. The backyard should also be clear of clutter, with a warm and inviting feel. People should want to spend their time there and imagine having cookouts with all their friends, which will get them excited about the home and also get those positive emotions going.
Tip # 4: Keep it Tidy… Like Really Tidy
Clean is king. Not everyone is a neat freak, but keeping food out on the counter, leaving toilet seats up, or having cables running across your walls can really turn potential buyers off. If you strive to make your home look like a hotel or Airbnb when your buyers walk in, you should be fine. Keep it in that condition until your home is sold.