If the steps are smiling...

I am told there is an old Italian proverb that goes something like "don't go inside if the steps aren't smiling". It is supposed to be sound advice for a person to avoid unwelcome, inhospitable situations. I remember that and it is always in the back of my mind as I am shooting new listings.

Here is my position on this: If movement is suggested by a picture, make sure the destination looks inviting. My take on real estate photos is to portray a property so that they viewer can imagine themselves in the space, moving around, accomplishing their desired activities, with the least challenge possible. 

Let's do a little research about the psychology of this approach. We all know that the photographs are intended to cause an interesting reaction from prospective buyers. In another article I will be discussing movement within the home. Today, I am discussing the exterior of the home, specifically the street views, usually at the start of the homes gallery on the multiples. This is what we call the "money shots". If the initial front of house pictures don't interest (or even repulse) a prospective buyer - you just lost them. Sometimes this occurs within the first 5 seconds that the listing shows on screen. Gone - they move on. You will never hear from them.

Now check out the listings on the multiples, Zillow, whatever. Specifically look at the entrance to the dwelling. Is it dark and foreboding or is it illuminated and expressive? Some photographers let the entrance go dark (this is very easy) and others cajole the image to subtly brighten the entrance. Without this extra attention to the photos "the steps aren't smiling". We go the extra step and start with a mandate that requires us to reveal the entrance in an inviting manner. 

If you flip through the current listings you will see some photographers take this into account and others don't. WE DO! ALWAYS! I leave you to draw your own conclusions. It is worth a few minutes to investigate and form your own opinions.

An example of how this appears when we finish these pictures can be found on one of our galleries...