I’m always amazed at some of the real estate listing photos that make it to the Internet. I don’t know if the real estate agent just doesn’t care to showcase the house in the best light or if they really have no idea how to take good real estate photos. But regardless of those poor real estate photos, there’s also the other side of that coin; photos that are just too good to be true or are secretly hiding something devilish. Here’s what I’m talking about; there are photos that are shown in a certain light, on a certain time of day, the agent has used a wide angle lens or cut out certain items from the photo or even Photoshopped. Here’s a good list of some key things to look for in real estate photos.
A large number of photos that only show one or two rooms. Take a look at the listing details. Does it say that the house has four bedrooms but you only see pictures of two? Has the real estate agent used up all 20 or 25 photos on the backyard and there are no pictures of the inside? There’s probably something hiding behind the doors.
The quality of the photos. If the photos are all dark, blurry or you can’t get a good idea of what you’re even looking at, chances are the rest of the house is not well put together either. Of course, it could be just a poor real estate agent not doing their job properly but it could also be just a terrible house.
Narrow photos or photos that are too close. If all of the photos of the inside of the house are horizontal and yet there’s that one photo of the outside of the house that is vertical, it’s probably because the agent doesn’t want you to see whatever is on either side of the house. There could be a freeway, liquor store, a junker house, or house that has a lot of vehicles in the front lawn. There’s probably a reason they don’t want you to see the entire neighborhood shot.
A perfect kitchen photo and that’s it. If the kitchen looks like it’s something perfect out of Better Homes & Gardens magazine, chances are you’re looking at an investment property. The investor has probably cut corners, use the cheapest materials but yet it looks amazing for the photos. If you can, ask your real estate agent who currently owns the house and how long ago it was purchased. This should give you a good idea if it was an investor or not.
There’s only one photo. This probably means that there is not much value in the house itself. The value could be in the land or it might be a short sale and the agent simply doesn’t want to take any more photos.
Wide angle photos. These photographs that are taken with a wide angle lens do an amazing job at making a 10 x 10′ room seem like an enormous great room. Photoshop can also work wonders so be cautious of these types of rooms where they might look bigger than they actually are.
Drone photos. If all you see in the listing are photos from a drone taken 50 feet in the air then it’s clear that the house leaves much to be desired. Drone photos are great and they certainly don’t hide anything on the outside but if there are no photos on the inside of the house, there’s usually something hiding.
Ah yes, real estate photos are a quandary. But hopefully, these little secrets can help you make a better decision on whether you really want to see more of the house or not.