Jeffrey Harrington's Blog
Most potential buyers for your home will have their first impression on the internet in the form of a photo gallery of your home. Therefore it’s essential to have quality photos that show off the size and features of both the interior and exterior of your house.
As smartphones are equipped with ever-improving built in cameras, taking decent photos of your home has never been easier. However, there are still a few basic photography techniques that you should keep in mind to get the best results.
In this article, we’ll give you some tips on shooting professional-looking photos of your home that will leave a good impression on potential buyers.
Lighting matters most
It may seem like most cameras these days adjust the exposure for poor lighting pretty well. However, if you’re taking photos in a dimly lit house, you can’t depend on your camera to fix the problem. When your camera or smartphone automatically adjusts the brightness of a photo you’re really losing photo quality.
You might have noticed pictures that appear grainy or pixelized. That is often because the photographer didn’t have enough light and allowed the camera to adjust. For best results, take photos in your home when the sun is high, open up the blinds and curtains, and turn on some ambient light in the room. A well-lit home looks much more inviting in photos than a dark one.
There’s only one other lighting tip you’ll need for taking quality photos of your home, and that’s to never use flash. Phone camera flashes can be good in a pinch if you’re not concerned with how a photo is going to look. But, it if you’re trying to take nice photos of your home a smart phone flash will likely ruin your photos. It will create a glare on any number if surfaces in your home and it will create an unnatural white-colored light that is typically unflattering.
Where you stand is important
You want to show off all of the features of your home, but you don’t want to have hundreds of photos in your gallery. To achieve this, it’s best to stand in a corner or against a wall to fit as much as possible into the frame.
Avoid holding the camera up over your head or kneeling down. Typically, when we see a home we see it from eye-level. Photos that are taken from a perspective that is unnaturally high up or low to the ground will appear strange and foreign to someone who is unfamiliar with your home.
Take a ton of photos
One of the most common pieces of advice amateur photographers receive is to shoot as many photos as they can. This helps you for two reasons. First, the more photos you take the more likely it is that there will be a few great shots. Second, shooting a lot of photos and then reviewing your work is the best way to learn what looks good and what doesn’t.
In a time where digital memory is cheap, there’s no reason to be economical with the number of photos you take.
If you're considering putting your house on the market, the job of helping you find a qualified buyer is an important one. The real estate agent you choose to market your home, schedule appointments, and provide you with day-to-day guidance will play a crucial role in the outcome of your sale.
In addition to picking an agent who has a successful track record of selling houses similar to yours, their overall attitude, communication style, and energy level can provide you with valuable insights into whether they're up to the challenge.
Here are three of the top reasons that a positive attitude is an indispensable quality in a real estate agent.
- When prospective buyers and agents tour your home, they will be influenced by several factors. While their main focus will be on the look and feel of your home, their opinions will also be swayed by your agent's presentation style. Your real estate professional should have a knack for helping prospects focus on the desirable aspects of a home, while downplaying its negative features. Although issues and potential problems with a property usually need to be acknowledged, a resourceful real estate agent will make sure the problem is kept in its proper perspective, rather than blown out of proportion. They'll also do their best to suggest cost-effective solutions. To the extent that it's possible and practical, a good agent will help prospective buyers imagine how much they'd enjoy moving into the house, customizing it to their personal preferences, and making the space their own. People will quickly pick up on the enthusiasm and attitude of your real estate agent, and will be consciously and unconsciously influenced by their verbal and nonverbal messages. Most, if not all, buyers will be quick to detect everything from authenticity and sincerity to indifference and lethargy in an agent. These traits should also be obvious to you when you're interviewing agents during the selection process.
- An optimistic, results-oriented real estate agent will tend to be more resourceful, proactive, and solution-oriented that one who focuses more on problems than solutions.
- Both enthusiasm and negativity are contagious, so your agent's attitude will have a direct impact on your own outlook. Since your responsibility as the seller is to keep your home and property looking its best at all times, discouragement and a loss of optimism can easily spill over into noticeable details like home cleanliness and staging.
Choosing a great real estate agent can potentially translate into a higher sale price and a shorter period of time that your home will be on the market. Since thousands of dollars are at stake, it makes good financial sense to pick an agent who possesses the necessary people skills, the relevant knowledge, and the professional expertise to bring you the best possible return on the sale of your property.
It takes as little as two to three missed mortgage payments to receive a foreclosure notice from your lender. Receiving a foreclosure letter from your bank can be as unnerving as receiving a letter from the IRS. What you may not know is that there are generally two stages to the foreclosure process.
Take action on a house foreclosure notice
At first, you will likely receive a notice or letter that you have defaulted on your loan. The type of letter that you receive depends on the housing laws in the state that the house is located in. Additionally, depending on the details in your mortgage, you may need to go to court to start and finalize a foreclosure.
Details included on a loan default notice may include your full name, street address and the lender's name and address. The reason why you are receiving the notice is also included. There's a likelihood that you will also receive a date by which, if you get caught up in your mortgage payments, you can remain in your house.
Which raises the first step that you could take to keep your house out of foreclosure. As soon as you receive a notice of mortgage default, contact your mortgage lender. Work out a date by which you can get caught up in your loan payments. Go with a date that you know you can meet. If you get caught up in mortgage payments by an agreed date, you can avoid receiving a foreclosure notice of sale.
More ways to keep your house out of foreclosure
Additional actions that you could take to keep your house out of foreclosure will impact your financial health over several years. However, there is another step that could keep you from dealing with a damaged credit rating. But, let's start with the early steps.
Schedule a meeting with your bank and discuss a loan modification. Again, make sure that you can meet the adjusted monthly mortgage payments. It does you no good to work out a temporary plan that you will only default on within a few months.
Take out aloan with another lender to cover the cost of the late payments. Only take out enough to cover the amount of mortgage that you are behind on. This should bean absolute last option, as it will cause you to take on more debt.
Another late option is to file bankruptcy. You will likely need to come up with bankruptcy filing fee. It is possible to find attorneys who will cover their fees until after the bankruptcy goes through. Just know that a bankruptcy will affect your credit for seven years.
You could also ask relatives to give you enough money to get caught up in your mortgage payments. Do this early, long before the bank moves your foreclosure to the sale stage. To avoid having your house go through foreclosure, take on a second job. For example, you could take on contractor work on weekends or in the evenings at home.
Depending on the amount of equity that you have in your home, you could sell items at your house to raise enough to cover late mortgage payments. As worried as you might become after you receive a foreclosure notice, you do have options. Start brainstorming for ways that you could rectify the situation. Above all, take action and reach out to your lender.
For home sellers, maximizing the value of your residence is key. However, it is important to remember the dangers associated with overvaluing your house.
If you overprice your residence, homebuyers may choose to look elsewhere for their dream house. As such, it may take you many weeks, months or years to sell your residence if you fail to price it correctly from the get-go.
So what does it take to avoid the risk of overpricing your home? Here are three tips to help home sellers set a fair price for any residence, in any real estate market, at any time.
1. Review the Housing Market in Your Area.
Spend some time assessing the local housing market – you'll be glad you did. This will enable you to better understand how your home compares to other residences in your city or town so you can price your house accordingly.
Check out the listing prices of homes that currently are available as well as the sold prices of residences that recently were purchased. By doing so, you'll be able to collect a broad assortment of housing market data and use this information to determine the right price for your house.
2. Get Your Home Appraised.
A home appraiser will conduct an in-depth examination of your residence, help you identify problem areas and determine your house's value. That way, you'll be able to enter the real estate market with realistic expectations and set a fair asking price based on your home appraisal.
Furthermore, a home appraisal offers valuable insights into ways that you can improve your home. The assessment will allow you to learn about the pros and cons of your home, and ultimately, determine the best ways to transform your house's weaknesses into strengths.
Don't forget to evaluate your home's interior and exterior as well. Completing home improvement tasks will improve your residence inside and out. Plus, performing home maintenance may allow you to set a higher asking price than you initially expected.
3. Hire an Experienced Real Estate Agent.
Let's face it – navigating the real estate market can be a long, arduous process. Thankfully, real estate agents are available that possess extensive industry experience and know-how, ensuring you can set the right price for your house without delay.
Perhaps best of all, a real estate agent understands the ins and outs of both buyer's and seller's markets. As such, he or she can offer recommendations about how to price your home, enhance your house's interior and exterior and much more.
With the right real estate agent at your disposal, you should have no trouble setting a fair price for your home. In addition, this professional will do whatever it takes to promote your house to the right homebuyers consistently, bolstering your chances of optimizing the value of your residence.
Don't leave anything to chance when you sell your home. Instead, employ a real estate agent, and you can speed up the process of selling your residence.
Finding the right house that meets your family's needs is an important decision; it's one that can affect the quality of your life for years to come. That's why it's especially important to be in a focused, resourceful state of mind when house hunting. It's also helpful to have a clear idea of what you're looking for and have a system in mind for comparing the strengths and weaknesses of every house you visit.
Knowing What You Want
Chances are, you're going to approach your house search with some preconceived notions about features like the floorplan, bedrooms, and number of bathrooms. You may also have strong preferences for a particular school district, the size of the back yard, and proximity to neighbors. One thing's for sure: There are a lot of details on which you'll need to concentrate as you meet with your real estate agent and visit different homes for sale. While conditions are not always ideal for taking it all in, here are a few tips which may help you get the most from the experience.