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The Home Across the Street is NOT a Palace

May 16 2014

photographerI want to talk to you about listing photos for a moment. I'm going to keep this really short, because I'm not so much expressing an opinion as asking a question. If you post misleading pictures on the MLS, does it actually offer any benefit to you or your clients?

Okay, so here's the backstory. The house across the street from us is for sale. It's just your average house. Nothin' fancy. Pretty dated, inside and out. Rather poorly maintained yard, which isn't surprising considering it was a rental. Not a lot of curb appeal, but nothing to cringe at.

So imagine my surprise when I look it up on the MLS and don't even recognize it from the photos. I mean, the place looks like a palace in these pics! I looked closely, and, as far as I can tell, they haven't been edited or altered in any way. Instead, this agent just must be a frickin' prodigy with a camera, because she managed to choose all the best angles without offering even a glimpse of the bad features.

In the last few weeks, I've seen many unfamiliar cars drive up our street, slow down in front of the house, and then drive away. I haven't seen anyone do a single showing. That doesn't necessarily mean there hasn't been one – after all, work and toddlers aren't conducive to time spent staring out windows.

I've been wondering: did this agent shoot herself in the foot? It seems that by posting misleading pics, she gained a lot of drive-bys, but no showings. But, then again, I've read (and even written) so many articles about taking effective listing photos – there must be some value in making a home look as attractive as possible.

I think I'll leave it there for the moment. I truly want to hear your opinion. Do you think there's value in making a property look as attractive as possible, even if the outcome is a little misleading?

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