Why choose a Professional Photographer for your Real Estate Photos?

Professional photos help sell (and rent) properties

 In today’s market, leveraging compelling imagery and enticing videos has become absolutely essential to successfully introducing and promoting properties, thus increasing the importance of having a professional real estate photographer as part of the listing agent’s marketing team. 

Great Photography Leads to More Showings

Great photography is one of the best ways to make a property stand out in a crowded market. In fact, recent independent studies have statistically confirmed that properties with professional photography used in their marketing sell faster and for more money.

Nowadays, home selling starts on the internet. The majority of home buyers research a home online before buying, and potential home buyers are more likely to visit a home if the property photos capture their attention. Poor quality real estate photos don’t present the home in the best possible light. Have your home professionally photographed to showcase it to its best advantage and dramatically increase your chances of selling.

It’s Good for Your Business

As a real estate professional, the return on investment you get from using professional photos makes the decision to hire a professional photographer a ‘no-brainer’. When you wow your client with fantastic photography, they are going to share the results with friends… on Facebook… in emails… and tell people they work with “My agent has done a great job of marketing my property. Look at the professional photos and virtual tour of my property. Doesn’t my home look beautiful?”

Your clients will be impressed with the level of professional completeness you’ve demonstrated in marketing their property, and they will tell their friends. Your business will definitely benefit. We’ve seen it again and again.

Inferior Photography Can Make You Look Unprofessional

A few years ago, the use of sub-par photographs was the norm! Your clients might not have liked your photos, but were unlikely to complain because they didn’t know any better. Well… those days are gone. Because so many agents now hire professional photographers, those that don’t are easy to spot. The majority of sellers that hire a real estate professional are now aware that the best agents use professional photographers. If you don’t, your reputation and business will suffer the consequences. Further, many leading brokers have quality control reviews of the photos to be used on their site and MLS listing and will not permit the listing to be displayed without highly professional photography.

The Bottom Line

The time when professional real estate photos were an “option” has ended. The top agents in your market are using them and those that don’t look like amateurs in comparison. But don’t take our word for it. Look for yourself at the photos of the successful agents in your market. Odds are that they are already using a professional photographer…and taking business from you!

Successful agents don’t use professional photographers because they are too lazy to take the photos themselves. They do so to help sell houses faster and make more money through increased client satisfaction and referrals. You should too!

Contact Abigayle Ray Photography today to get started! (406)792-5285  or contact us by email at info@abigaylerayphotography.com

How do I book a photo session? What information do you need?

Call us, our phone number is (406) 792-5285 try to book at least a week in advance when possible, especially during busy listing periods when our schedule fills up quickly.

1)  When you contact us, please have the following information available:

2)  Address of property

3)  Subdivision (if applicable)

4)  Direction the front of the home faces (when you look out the front door)

5)  Square footage of property

6)  Your contact information and broker affiliation (if applicable)

What form of payment do you accept?

The retainer fee may be paid by cash, USPS money order, and credit/debit card (Visa, MasterCard, Discover and American Express) only.

**Please note** We DO NOT accept checks of any kind for payment of sessions with Abigayle Ray Photography. We apologize for any inconvenience that this may cause you, but we have simply had too many problems with checks in the past to continue accepting them any longer.

How much time is required for a photo shoot of a property?

Getting professional-quality real estate photos requires more than just running through and pushing the button on the camera. We suggest allowing at least an hour for the average size home, maybe more. The time required is based on the size of the home, the amount of existing light, etc.

Once we know the size and scope of your home we can give you a better estimate of the time required.

How and when will I receive my images?

We strive to deliver your real estate photos within 3-5 days after completion of the photo session. RUSH service delivery may be possible with advance arrangement and for an additional fee.

We use the simplest, most efficient and secure method of electronic delivery of the images. We will provide an e-mail with a link to your images as well as instructions for handling the receipt of your images.

Can you shoot neighborhood amenities?

Most often, the answer is yes. In fact, we keep a photo database of neighborhood amenities for many communities and we try to update it frequently as things are always constantly changing and evolving in the area. Please provide us a list of those areas you would like included. Note: we are not permitted to photograph schools or parks if children would be present in the photos.

The weather has gotten nicer and my exterior looks much better now. Will you come to re-shoot the exterior?

We often re-shoot front exteriors when requested by client. This qualifies for a $65.00 return trip rate in which we’ll come back and provide an additional 4-6 photos of the exterior.

Can I schedule a photo session on the weekend?

Our Real Estate photo sessions are typically scheduled from Monday through Friday as we keep the weekend available for our other photo sessions and weddings as this is when they are normally scheduled. We may adjust the schedule for any booked weekday appointment due to weather conditions or other factors beyond our control. There will be a $50 weekend rate surcharge added to the regular rate for any photo sessions requested on a weekend.

What is the difference between Abigayle Ray Photography's professional photos and those I would take of a property?

We are trained professional photographers. As such, our professionally created real estate photos will typically avoid the following common errors made by the untrained professional:

1)  Overexposed or “blown out” windows.

2)  Use of an incorrect lens – either not using a wide angle lens (which is usually needed), or using too wide of a lens resulting in distorted rooms.

3)  Poor lighting – resulting in dark, dull images.

4)  Uneven lighting – not using advanced lighting techniques needed to ensure large rooms or rooms with large windows get enough lighting throughout.

5)  Converging verticals – fancy term used to describe when the vertical elements in a photo (walls, cabinets, etc.) are not straight

6)  Flat images – using a flash on a camera that results in “flat” light and “flat” images. We use off camera flash when we feel it is needed.

7)  Improper white balance – different light sources (sun, tungsten, fluorescent) all give off different colors and must be compensated for to ensure room colors are accurate

8)  Poor composition – not enough of the room or the wrong parts of the room showing.

9)  No post processing – it is very difficult to get a professional looking image ‘in’ camera on a consistent basis

Preparation Checklist - What do I need to do to prepare for the photo session?

You only get one chance to make a great first impression. Make the most of it by ensuring your client appreciates the importance of the images used in marketing the property. We will be photographing both the inside and outside of your home, including all of the major rooms. We normally do not photograph the garage unless it has special features. If you have special features of your home that are not obvious, please let us know about these so we can include them in the shoot.

The most important thing is to make sure the house is clean and de-cluttered. We may turn on lights or open or close blinds, but we do not stage any rooms and we do not clean the house. It is your responsibility as the agent or owner to have the house prepared for the photo session. If you are an agent, we recommend that you meet with your seller prior to the photo session to make sure they have prepared the house.

Below is a preparation checklist to help you and your client prepare for a photo session with us:

• Contain pets in the garage or out of sight.

• Residents should vacate all rooms and areas being photographed.

• Remove all vehicles from driveways and do not park directly in front of the house.

• Move garbage cans so they cannot be seen from the street.

• Remove all garden tools including hoses and sprinklers.

• Mow, rake yard, and remove all weeds from cracks in the concrete.

• Sweep driveways, sidewalks and patios.

• Remove the yard sign if possible.

• When possible, water the grass 4-5 hours prior to shooting. Even a brown lawn will look better.

• Clean mirrors and windows.

• Clear off counter tops in kitchen and bathroom areas.

• Remove photos, notes and papers from the refrigerator.

• Remove any calendars – calendars make a listing look dated if it goes over 30 days.

• Turn on all interior lights.

• Turn off all ceiling fans, televisions, and computer monitors.

• De-clutter rooms which may be excessively furnished. They do not photograph well.

• Make all beds and tidy bedrooms.

• Make sure all clothes are hung up, or put out of sight.

• Conceal cords! Unplug them from the wall if needed. (Except lights).

• Replace any burned out light bulbs.

• No shoes by doors or anywhere, Please place them in a closet.

• Remove piles of newspapers and magazines.

• Tuck all indoor trash cans out of view in a closet or cupboard.

• Let us know if your home contains valuable works of art. We can edit photos to make these items unrecognizable.

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