Sarah & Nick Aylward


I’m sure you have heard the old adage, “You only get one chance to make a first impression.”  While this can be very true in relationship building, it is especially true in SELLING YOUR HOME!  In order to net higher returns, and sell faster, you have to generate a buzz that will have prospective buyers lining up to tour your home.  There are two key elements to gaining attraction when marketing your home…price and photos.  Pricing strategies are very fluid and change with market demands, but the one constant that will always stay the same is that professional photos sell homes.  It is also important to note that homes with high-quality photographs sell faster.  In the online world that we live in, we are doing our home shopping on the internet through a multitude of real estate pages.  Often times we swipe past the ugly house but will stop to investigate the photogenic ones.  In a report by the National Association of Real Estate Agents shows that 87% of homebuyers on the internet found images to be among the most useful features of listing websites when looking for new homes they might like.

As a homeowner there is a lot you can do…and not do, to prepare your home to be as photogenic as possible.



  • Light it up-  It is important to make sure you are harnessing as much natural and artificial light as possible.  All shades up, blinds open and every light bulb burning.  Brightening your home will have a cleaner look with sharper photos
  • Basketballin-  A good piece of staging advice is that any design piece smaller than a basketball, should go.  Smaller items are perceived as clutter.  We have literally carried around a basketball to “bounce” smaller items.  It is important to remove all clutter from countertops, shelves, 
  • It’s not you, It’s me-  When marketing your home, you want buyers to picture themselves living in the home, not you.  De-personalizing your home is important, so that means all wedding photos, vacation pics, and the refrigerator wall-of-fame should be taken down.
  • Kick it to the curb-  Curb appeal is just as important in photos as it is in person.  Fresh mulch in flower beds, potted flowers or plants at the entry, sticks and leaves removed from the roof, are some small things you can do to make your home more inviting.  There has never been a better time to mow the grass or rake the leaves then before photos.



  • Christmas in July-  Pictures never expire…unless there is a Christmas tree in them.  Holiday décor will timestamp your photos.  While most of us agree that our homes look magical during the holidays, it doesn’t carry the same appeal in May.
  • FIDO’nt-  Remove as many signs of pets as possible: beds, food bowls, litter boxes, chew toys.  While your poodle Fifi may have just been groomed, she does not belong in the pictures either.
  • Home Headless Shot-  The cover photo of your home is typically the front exterior.  This is the “Head Shot” of the home.  Omitting a picture of the front of your home will send red flags to potential buyers.  While the pool may be your favorite amenity, you need a good exterior shot to tell the story of your home in the proper order.
  • Who moved my Chair?-  An important distinction to make is that you want to photo the space and not how you live in the space.  Avoid staging furniture “how you watch tv” and think about what creates the most visual space. 

Don’t miss the opportunity to give your home the best chance at a wonderful first impression.