A picture is worth 1,000 words

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By The Staff



It is said that about 85 percent of homes today are sold online. It's not that the actual purchasing occurs on the Internet, but most buyers today search the Web for homes before they decide to see one in person. If an online picture of a home does not appeal to them, they keep looking. Some people feel if there is not a picture, then the home isn’t worth going to see. That is great news if you have a house that is market read and looking fantastic and have great pictures posted online. If your pictures are less than stellar, or the rooms they depict are less than stunning, you may have more of a problem. You may think that your home is stylish, clutter free and clean. Take a picture and see if that is reflected in the photo. Just like when you see a picture of yourself and think, “Oh, I have gained more weight than I thought,” or, “My hair is so gray – when did that happen?” style, cleanliness and clutter have a way of getting lost after a certain period of time. If you are not satisfied when you look at the pictures of your home, chances are a potential buyer will not be either. Take a photo and then take action. When you live in your home, you tend to ignore things that need attention. You become immune to new possibilities because it seems fine the way it is. Sometimes things need to be done — like changing the color on the walls or replacing flooring. That old sofa Aunt Polly gave you sure has been a great staple in your home for the past 10 years, but you may not have realized how thread-bare it appears. All of those kitchen appliances you store on the counter but only use every once in a while really equate to clutter in a picture. The things you live with every day out of necessity could be holding you back from selling your home. I can’t tell you how often I show a homeowner the “before” pictures, have them complete work, and then show them “after” pictures and they are amazed. That is the effect you are looking for. So snap a few pictures of each room before you decide to list your home. Make an honest assessment of what may need to be done. Oops! That crown molding you installed last year doesn’t even show up in the pictures because the color of the wall is too light. Fixing that with a quick coat of paint in a darker tone will make all of the difference. Once you have made those changes, take another round of photos. Any better? Complete any additional work and then call your real estate agent or virtual tour professional and have them take the phenomenal pictures that will get your house sold.  Just like when you have a professional photo taken of yourself — you want to look your best — taking pictures of your home for the Internet is the same concept. Put your home’s best foot forward.  Staging can help you achieve an updated look for pictures. Having your home reflect the current season is important.  If your home looks like it is decorated in the current season, then it appears that is hasn’t been on the market for very long. If you still have Christmas decorations up in June, then that signals to buyers that the house has been on the market for quite a while.  If you want some new ideas to update your look for fall, stop by for a free staging workshop at 6:30 p.m. Sept. 15 at Whitt’s End Home and Garden in Cool Springs Plaza. Get some great new ideas that will exude warmth and inviting décor for your new fall pictures, sending a strong signal to those potential buyers that your house is ready to be seen. Sheila O’Mara, owner of Staged SO Right, a full-service home staging company, is an accredited staging professional. She can be reached at stagedsoright@bbtel.com.