smartphone vs. pro

In my home, we often receive magazines geared toward Realtors because of my husband’s profession (he is a Realtor, after all). I often catch myself flipping through his magazines to scope out Real Estate photos from fellow photographers. Often times the articles don’t necessarily apply to my profession; however, I recently stumbled upon one such article that made me laugh. I will give them credit for pointing out the obvious: that “homebuyers identify photos as the most useful feature when they are searching for homes online.” In the past when my husband and I were searching for homes online, I would often skip right over listings that didn’t have pictures even if the home listed was in our price range.

Now on to the funny part of the article…a two-page spread on how to use your smartphone to take Real Estate photos. A sucker punch right to my stomach. So it has come to this: my greatest competitor in my field as a professional photographer is the smartphone. Why would you spend an extra $100 to $500 on a pro when you can take such awesome photos with your phone for free? Well, according to analysis done by Redfin Corp, investing that cash in a pro is worth a lot more than you’d think. How does a $934 to $116,076 gain on your listing sound? Read more about the research here.

Then I came across a fellow RE photographer’s website who did a before and after comparison of Typical vs. Pro photos; and I liked his idea so much I decided to do a comparison of my own. So, on one of my shoots I had my husband, the Realtor, follow me around and take pictures with his iPad. To preface, this was a million-dollar house we were shooting. I gave no direction to my hubby as he took photos other than to say, “try to get the same scene into your photos as I am getting in mine.”

Below are the results from our shoot that day (mouse over each image to see the photos he captured vs. the ones I captured). If you were a homebuyer, which photos would more likely prompt you to want to see the house in person?

Twilight Exterior…

001002

Formal Living Room…

003004

Formal Living Room with Pool View…

005006

Kitchen…

007008

Living Room…

009010

Master Bathroom…

011012

Pool…

013014

Back Yard View / Boat Dock…

015016

If you are a Realtor and your only option to market a listing is to result to the smartphone pictures, by all means…do what you have to do. My goal here was just to demonstrate the difference it makes in investing in professional photos. And with less than a handful of listings out there that actually utilize a professional photographer’s skills, doing so could give you a running start ahead of your competitors. In short, I’d like to go back to the Redfin article mentioned earlier and quote the author:

Let’s not mince words: If you are not using professional photography to market your home, you are not really marketing your home.

All photographs appearing on this site are the property of Crystal Star Real Estate Photography. They are protected by U.S. Copyright Laws and are not to be downloaded or reproduced in any way without the written permission of Crystal Star Real Estate Photography. © 2013 Crystal Williams All Rights Reserved.

Advertisements

Tags: ,

2 responses to “smartphone vs. pro”

  1. Rich Baum says :

    Very interesting post. I like the concept of before and after. Best of luck.

  2. Larry Gray says :

    “Let’s not mince words: If you are not using professional photography to market your home, you are not really marketing your home.” I would even take that a step further. The seller hires the Realtor to professionally market the home. The commission paid IS the seller’s marketing budget. If the marketing plan developed by the Realtor is lacking or compromised where research clearly shows not returning the highest for the seller, is the marketing budget being applied for the benefit of the seller. Imagine what would happen if the seller took a critical look at their marketing budget and how much that iphone picture was costing them.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: