The Kline May Real Estate Blog

Kline May Realty Blog

The Benefits of Professional Photography in Real Estate



Hello, it's Aimee, and I'm blogging on behalf of Kline May Realty and our family of agents.

They say a picture is worth a 1,000 words, and in real estate photography, it's apparently worth at least $1,000 dollars. Read on to learn more!



Ryan and Ashley Swartz are a husband and wife photography team based in Hinton, Virginia. They enjoy being outdoors in their free time, but they haven't had too much free time lately because the agents at Kline May Realty have been keeping them very busy.

Swartz Photography works with the company to photograph all of our listings. It's a tool that we are proud to offer our sellers because by having Ryan and Ashley on board, we know that our listing photos are high-quality and were taken with careful attention to composition.

So...want to know how this $1,000 comes into play? First, it will be helpful to know the difference between two types of cameras:

Point-and-shoot - the name says it all, the camera does almost all of the work, and you have little control over the settings. It's like being in cruise control in an automatic car. You're limited as to what you can do!

Digital single-lens-reflex – This type of camera uses a reflex design scheme to capture images and you control the camera's various settings. In the camera world, this is the stick-shift Mercedes-Benz with loaded options. Ian Roth is a luxury real estate photographer in Orlando. According to Ian, "Three things go into creating a photograph: aperture, shutter speed, and ISO." When I chatted with Ian via e-mail, he gave me a great analogy: "Think of a window as a camera taking a picture. Aperture is how much you open the window, shutter speed is how long you keep it open, and ISO is how bright the sun is."


DSLR is on left

And when it comes to real estate photography, the DSLR is where the money is at.

Redfin is an online real estate brokerage and according to a study they recently conducted:

"Homes shot with a DSLR camera:

-Receive an average of 61% more 'views' online than their peers across all price tiers.
-Have a 47% higher asking price per square foot.
-Have an increased likelihood of selling."
The study concludes, "Homes with professional photographs get more page views and ultimately sell for a higher price..."

You may be asking yourself right now, "How accurate are those numbers?" And the answer is very accurate!

In the article, the Redfin writer said, "We calculated two ratios of sale price to original list price for homes that sold in each price tier: one for homes with a primary listing photo shot with a DSLR, and one for homes where the primary listing photo was shot with a point-n-shoot. Photos shot with other types of cameras (camera phones, etc.) or where the camera type was unknown were excluded from the analysis. We then took the difference between the two ratios in each price tier and multiplied that by the average list price in the tier." To read the entire article click here.

Every Kline May Realty residential listing is photographed by Swartz Photography – at no additional cost to the homeowner! Our agents can attest to the benefits of professional photography with examples form their experience:

Lisa Wenger, of the Shenandoah Valley Real Estate Team says, "I had a client last week rave about Ashley's pictures of their home. Having a professional photographer is a great tool to offer our clients, they know they are getting an experienced photographer who will show off their property to its fullest potential!"

Kai Degner, of the LiveHB team says, "Almost every buyer looks for homes online, and pictures are the main thing they look at. Professional pictures are a critical element of featuring a property. Walking into a home and using a cell phone to take pictures doesn't cut it."

Derik Trissel says, "Having a professional photographer is an invaluable asset for our listings. It ensures listings are viewed in the best possible light from the very first day they hit the market."

Barry Suttles says, I have had clients tell me how important it was to have professional photos. We are offering them something others are not. And after all, we are in the business of 'Marketing!' Making their home as appealing as possible, no matter if it a lower end home or a mansion."

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