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Getting Ready for the Photographer

What to expect when I photograph your home:

Exterior

It is important to consider the time of day when photographing the exterior of the house. because ideally, I want to avoid the harsh shadows that create extreme light and dark areas of contrast that will hide some areas of the house. Early morning and late afternoon light are usually the most flattering. I will get more accurate colors of the house, lawn, gardens, etc. Two trips may be necessary for the best light. When I arrive, I walk around the house, see if anything appears out of place. I make sure the car(s) bicycle(s) and trash receptacle(s) are out of the picture and the garage doors are closed, I try several shots from various places around the house, being sure the get the pool, swing set, treehouse, or anything else of interested and included in the sale. Make sure nothing or no one is visible in the windows. No crooked blinds, not one open drape, next to a closed one. Be sure deck and porch furniture is organized and fix anything that will be a distraction. Lawn should be neat and no pets running around. All of these are distractions.

Interior

I cannot emphasize need for a clean uncluttered home. Please replace any burned out light bulbs and be sure lamps are all plugged in and working. Remove normal the kitchen clutter, coffee makers, appliances on countertop, dish drainers, towels, anything that will distract the buyers attention. On the day of the shoot I begin with a walk through of the home. I leave the camera behind and. take this opportunity to turn on the lights throughout the home make sure the lights are working and that lampshades are level.and check to be sure that the blinds raised and level, doors are closed, beds are made, and the bedding is properly arranged. Be sure that anything framed and hanging on the walls, mirrors or photographs, etc. are level and smudge free.

Bathrooms

Because of the size of most common bathrooms and the reflective surfaces it is difficult to make an interesting photo. Please be sure to remove all personal items; toothpaste and brushes, drinking glasses, bar soap, pill containers, used towels, etc. Be sure the toilet seat in in the down position and nothing is on the tank. Regarding showers and tubs, my preference is to draw the curtain about halfway, hopefully minimize glare and again remove any visible soaps, shampoo, razors, etc.

Kitchen

Be sure that all clutter on the counter and sink is cleared away. No dishes, cups or dish soap to be seen. Even an excessive number of appliances on the counter is distracting. Personally, I prefer there are no towels hanging anywhere and if there are notes and magnets on the refrigerator, keep them to a minimum or remove them. Make sure any small area rugs are square to the cupboards. Pay special attention to appliances that have reflective metallic surfaces. Try to photograph at an angle, they are going to glare, especially the brushed and black finishes and if they have smudges please remove them, they will appear in the photos. Kitchens can also be home for the family's pet(s) food bowls. I try to avoid showing them in the photographs regardless of where they appear. I think they have a potential to prejudice a prospective purchaser against an otherwise spotless house.

Bedrooms

In the bedrooms be sure beds are made and the spread is wrinkle free and hanging evenly, any clothing is in the proper place, closet or dresser, and that the personal items have been removed from night tables including book and magazines, drinking glasses, eyeglasses, facial tissue, etc. and closet doors closed.

Living room

Living rooms are what friends and family see when they visit so they do not usually need too much attention. Clutter in the living are tends to be books and magazine. Fireplace mantles can sometimes be catch-all which can detract from the appearance. Be sure the carpet is vacuumed, and any throw rugs are organized.

Garages and unfinished basement

I usually include a photograph of the various mechanicals. As much as is possible try to remove clutter.

Have the vehicles in the garaged or parked in the road. In winter make sure the walks are shoveled.