By Brooke Wolford
It could just be me, but are you questioning why we still run into bad photos and poor property descriptions? It seems like a slight epidemic in my world lately. Every single time I run into this I always get a little frustrated and wonder how this happens.
A few examples:
1. A listing description that said, “Great starter home, just needs a little loving care.” When I arrived at the property, there was extensive fire damage and I would assume it was unlivable. The pictures shown were obviously taken prior to the fire, but when I spoke to the agent to schedule the showing, there was absolutely no mention of it.
2. A showing note: “Small/friendly dog (Tinkerbell) on the property.” When my clients and I walked in, the dog was not even close to small, it was a large Rottweiler and we were not able to view the property at all because the dog was in attack mode.
3. I once saw an agent do a drive-by to take a photo in my neighborhood. Get out of your car, people!
4. Some really great listing photos…
It’s frustrating to me that this still happens. How does this serve your seller? Nonetheless, how does any of this help the listing sell and get you paid? I provide the same basic services to all of my sellers regardless of price or condition. How does this help you get buyers? I just don’t get it! Take some time and do some work. It really shouldn’t be this difficult.
Brooke Wolford is a real estate practitioner with Coldwell Banker Burnet in Woodbury, Minn. Follow her blog at adventuresinrookierealestate.com.
By Amy Steele
I love to take photos. Love. It has been one of my passions and creative outlets since moving up here to paradise (Crestline region of California). I bought a Canon Rebel EOS about a year and a half ago and I have enjoyed taking some great pictures with it.
One day when shooting in sports mode and taking about five frames per second of my son, I went home and noticed that the autofocus wouldn’t work anymore. Gasp and horror — what did I do to break my still new, expensive camera???!!! I fiddled with it for a bit and realized that it was the lens and not the camera. I gently tried to focus it manually while still in autofocus mode and then took some shots. It worked again! Two days later when I went out to shoot again it stopped. It seemed that the autofocus is sticking. So I tried manual mode, which I’d never done before. I hated it. I haven’t ever really learned how to use this fancy camera and relied on autofocus to get my shots quickly.
Well today I was out taking shots of some beautiful ice formations and I had to use manual because the autofocus was sticking again. I realized that I could really get the shot I wanted that autofocus never would have allowed. I could change the field of view much easier and take closer shots than I ever could before. Suddenly I love manual focus.
How does this relate to real estate some of you may be asking? I realized this year that my business has all been on auto. I take advantage of online leads coming to me — people finding me online to be their REALTOR®. I know that I need to be much more proactive to really set myself apart and provide more personal service, not only to clients, but also to potential clients. I have been fortunate to have some pretty fabulous clients who have all become friends and neighbors. What if I showed that to potential clients? Wouldn’t they want to work with someone that was more personal to them and their needs? I say yes.
So my shift is now manually focused. I am providing a more personal touch with the help of some new automated systems that I’m getting into place. I’m working to set myself apart in the mind of my potential clients as the one they couldn’t forget and would love to do business with over my competition. Thanks, camera, for a lesson I’ll not forget.
Amy Steele is a full-time real estate practitioner with Coldwell Banker Sky Ridge Realty in Crestline, Calif. Visit her Web site: www.CrestlineHomeForSale.com.