Home Buying in Orlando>Question Details

Rubby, Home Buyer in Orlando, FL

To all you Realtors why would you put some homes with no pictures?? Is it that hard to take pictures before putting them up for sale?

Asked by Rubby, Orlando, FL Thu Sep 16, 2010

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I have asked the same question! I do not get it...

Ron and I not only take multiple photos...we visual tour EVERYTHING even vacant land. AND we make sure it hits 350 web sites. Our marketing plan is geared to generate the maximum number of showings in order to get offers and negotiate the best price for our sellers AND follow that contract thru to closing!

Debbie Albert, PA
Coldwell Banker Residential
Web Reference: http://www.ronanddebbie.net
1 vote Thank Flag Link Fri Sep 17, 2010
Rubby, You're a kick and I have answered and watched many of your questions. And come on Brian and Jeff. Sure there are lazy REALTORS. There always have been and always will be but Rubby, GO SEE SOME PROPERTIES WITH A REALTOR YOU TRUST AND WITH WHOM YOU ARE LOYAL. Let them do the research for you. It's FREE. Do you want to see pictures? Or do do want to buy a piece of the planet? The Internet has become a great resource for information but for most of us it's just that. Information that we won't act on or use. Get out there and smell what the air is like around the real estate. Take a look at the neighbors. Listen to the sounds around the property. Pictures on the Internet, Virtual Tours, written descriptions pale to the real thing. They are sometimes better and sometimes worse. Don't over-research it. If you are serious put some boots on the ground with a trusted REALTOR. They will even pay for the ride. (unless they make you drive:)
3 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Sep 16, 2010
I love this question - I often wonder the same thing myself. Our local MLS board can fine the agent if they don't have at least one picture listed within 3 days do putting it on the market.
2 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Sep 29, 2010
I dont know about other agents,but as for myself, I deal a whole lot with out of state buyers. When you have a day or two with them to look at homes, and you send out 40 listings for your clients to look through, and you have them pick out about sixteen because thats probably all you have time to see...pictures are very important! A good representation of your home gives it the better chance of being one of the homes picked...and that could lead to a contract!
2 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Sep 21, 2010
I totally agree coming from a Realtor myself. Pictures are very neccessary along with a virtual tour if u want to give your client a better chance at getting their home sold. Pictures please!
1 vote Thank Flag Link Wed Sep 29, 2010

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Aventura | Bal Harbour | North Beach
1 vote Thank Flag Link Wed Sep 29, 2010
Hi Rubby,

In a time when "getting to know" a property through multiple pictures and details seems the "norm" - not seeing any pictures and descriptions can raise a warning flag - - or at the very least - - elicit a sense of incompleteness for the observer.

Whether or not exterior and interior pictures would be taken and when, should have been part of the pre-listing conversation held between Seller and Agent. For each property found lacking – there could be a different reason – but the short answer is – its Seller must not feel there would be value or benefit in the pictures or the listing agent is just too lazy.

Why am I sighting the Seller asa possible reason? Making sure they hire an agent who can and will use effective, timely and innovative marketing techniques is their job! Giving the public what they want has long been the basis upon which SALES is done – and today the public wants pictures AND in-depth descriptions.

Within the industry there are mixed emotions about the effectiveness of multiple photos. Remember, pictures can and do help a prospective buyer form an opinion before they actually have an opportunity to see, smell AND feel the property.

One theory is = a couple exterior shots along with number of rooms and their sizes, number of baths up or down, basement finished or not, garage 1 or 2 car, attached or not, type of heat & air along with the size of lot along with a brief description of the properties amenities should be enough to solicit “unbiased” interest on the part of prospective buyers thereby leaving the “first opinion” to be gathered during a personal tour of the property.

Another = Buyer’s today have less time and more definite wants in their homes. Seeing for themselves the colors, shapes and finishes in a home helps them narrow in on those they would prefer, thereby cutting down on the number of properties they need to tour and the time they would spend doing so.

In my experience – more pictures has not lead to fewer tours, just more confusion or mis-impressions.

In closing – though I would vote for fewer pictures and more details – as advocate for the Seller (Seller’s Listing Agent), my job is to expose the property to the buying public and the make it “Stand-Out” in the crowd. If to be competitive in today’s real estate market pictures are necessary – than its pictures they will get – QUALITY pictures.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Thu Sep 23, 2010
I have to admit, I miss the days when we listened to what the buyers wanted and selected a group of homes that worked best to fit their needs. I truthfully could hit the exact right property within 7-10 homes. Now, buyers think this kitchen looks too small, or this carpet looks too worn, or that bathroom appears dated and they decline a showing. Or, they ooh and ahh over those wide-angle lens shots and want to see inside even when I know the pics are misleading. They are then dismayed to discover that panoramic kitchen has the fridge virtually atop the island, it's so tight IRL.

Sometimes, photos do lie - not all photographers are created equal.. I just had buyers toss out a house because the kitchen cabinets were PINK in the photos. I knew they weren't really pink, but it took a lot of convincing to get them to set foot inside - and it's one of 3 they are now weighing buying.
Web Reference: http://www.kimnoonan.com
1 vote Thank Flag Link Tue Sep 21, 2010
in our area you must post photos within 24 hours or you get fined!
1 vote Thank Flag Link Tue Sep 21, 2010
Hi everyone and thanks to all who answered my question, the ones who answered me in stating that some are lazy are 100 % correct,plain and simple thats what it is. I just flew to Florida over the weekend and by the way my realtor paid for the ticket, and I just put an offer on a nice home that my realtor took some additional pics for me because you guys didnt provide. thanks again !!
1 vote Thank Flag Link Tue Sep 21, 2010
Definitely laziness for many. A few are probably trying to hide less than desirable listings, but that doesn't really work since many will automatically assume something is wrong with the property. However, I'm surprised at the number of agents that said their client's didn't want pictures even against the agent's advice. Those seller's are doing themselves a disservice insisting on no pictures.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Tue Sep 21, 2010
Mack, first you have to get someone to buy you the plane ticket so you can spend the 15 minutes checking out the house in person. Wink.

Great answers - and the truth is a mix of all. Some lazy agents. Some techo-dunces. Some al a carte brokerages that require the sellers to shoot their own photos and pay extra for their inclusion. Some rough condition homes that are being kept under wraps. Some high-volume REO listers that find it's not economically smart to spend that time (because the houses all sell anyway to buyers who are in the doors first and fast). Some sellers who request privacy and limit interior photos for security purposes. Some agents that are trying to keep thieves from appliance shopping the vacant high-end homes.

While multiple photos can be helpful, nothing beats a personal walk through.
Photos can lie and they sure don't tell you if the property smells like a litter box.
Web Reference: http://www.kimnoonan.com
1 vote Thank Flag Link Mon Sep 20, 2010
What, it's so hard to spend fifteen minutes checking out a place where you might be spending the next fifteen years?
1 vote Thank Flag Link Mon Sep 20, 2010
Hi Rubby,

Let me give you a different slant on this. If you are asking about a normal sale or a short sale, then yes, it's pretty poor. Certainly a great reason NOT to hire that realtor in the future.

On the other hand if you are talking about bank owned properties, then the answer is slightly different. It could actually be a strategy on the part of the listing agent to ensure that potential buyers actually go see the place in person before they make an offer. Also, the big players in bank owned properties have hundreds of listings at a time and frankly it costs money to send staff out, take pictures, and up load them. They make very little margin selling bank owned properties and this is clearly a way to cut costs. To the extent that you find it frustrating looking at bank owned properties with only one picture, well so do those of us who work as buyer's agents for them.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Mon Sep 20, 2010
Probably laziness, trouble with technology, indifference.
I never understood that. I enjoy taking and posting beautiful photos of properties.

Elena Ollick
Amerivest Realty
Faith Home Loans
1 vote Thank Flag Link Fri Sep 17, 2010
Rubby, you are absolutely right. Our MLS allows a Realtor to put 12 photos online and yet so often you find just one or two photos. All listings are required to have at least one photo which must under almost every circumstance be a front view.

Sometimes we are told when a Realtor comes from another Realtor board yet the MLS's show the listings of those boards, ocassionally a listing comes over without photos even though the Realtor has put them on the MLS in their area.

As a Realtor, I get so frustrated seeing listings with one photo and little or no description. It seems some agents do not want to sell their listings, so I totally agree with you.

Jeff Launiere, ALHS, CDPE
1 vote Thank Flag Link Thu Sep 16, 2010
You are so right- that makes me crazy! It only takes a few minutes and it makes all the difference in the world!
Thanks for a great question!!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Oct 5, 2010
Personally I have no idea - it frustrates me no end when I see listings without photos. OK, to see the outside I can google map it and see the street view, but even on a complete junker of a house, there should be a front photo plus a photo to show the land.

So no, it is not hard, but I assume for some agents it may just be too much of an inconvenience......
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Oct 4, 2010
You nailed it so well. A thorn in my side too. I can see 1-2 pictures for the not so beautiful homes. You as a buyer already know, it's not worth looking at if there aren't any pictures. Your perception is "No pictures, must be a mess inside" and sometimes,yes.

In many cases, agents just don't take the time to take pictures. I have to admit, I don't take good pictures, so I have my husband do it. I am so in agreement with you and pray you are heard loud and clear.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Oct 3, 2010
Usually it's because there was an urgency to put the listing into MLS and not time to take a photo. Or the outside of the home is under repair, or perhaps at the request of the seller.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Oct 1, 2010
In response to Nina and Kim's answers, if the client doesn't want any photos of the property on the listing for whatever reason, then it is the due diligence of the agent to communicate that in the agent or public remarks. I have NEVER seen a listing with no photos - which is what the question is about - or even listings with just one photo as required by MRIS, that had any explanation as to why there were no photos or only one photo. That's just laziness.

If the client doesn't want any photos up, then the agent still needs to do their best to sell that property. No photos and no explanation equals a poor agent.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Sep 29, 2010
As a seller you should sit down with your listing agent and asked them not to put the listing in the MLS without pictures. With the internet being accessible as it is, there is not too many buyers driving through the neighborhoods looking at homes when they seen real estate signs at the street corner. I would recommend speaking with you listing agent and working this issue out prior to signing any contracts.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Sep 29, 2010
I agree with Kim. An agent must respect the client's wishes, and if the client has a strong belief in the right to privacy, I will not do any photos other than the exterior shot required by the MLS. If the wording on a listing or advertisement is catchy enough, prospective buyers will want to satisfy their curiosity as to what's inside, regardless of whether there are photos of the interior (many of which are "staged" or phony-looking anyway.)
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Sep 29, 2010

I think that there are just a lot of lazy agents out there! Here in my county in California you could receive a fine for not posting pictures, But most of all this is a disservice to your client who could be losing thousands of internet leads because online buyers will just move on to the next listing
Web Reference: http://discoverybayhome.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Sep 29, 2010
You are right there NANCY. There are no problems to take pictures of houses for listing purposes unless the seller says NO I don't want to,
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Sep 29, 2010
Of course it is not hard to take pictures. During a listing presentation is the time to discuss how a home will be marketed and how to stage a home to best reflect its attributes. No pictures sends the message that the home is a wreck and how many people will not even take the time to drive by much less visit the home.

As a seller, it is important that you take the advice of your Realtor when it comes to staging. We aren't being picky we are trying to show your home in the best light.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Sep 29, 2010
If I were the client and saw some of the ways so called "real estate professionals" listed my home, especially without a picture - I'd fire them and file a complaint to the state board!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Sep 29, 2010
Both exterior and interior photos are very important as most buyers will bypass those properties that do not have photos and move on to the ones that do. Quality photos are a must!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Sep 29, 2010
some sellers are not comfortable with all of the inner contents of their home being published on the internet!Realtors can only be as motivated as the seller is!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Sep 29, 2010

Out here in Seattle there needs to be at least one photo associated with the listing within 24 hours of it going on the multiple. The photo must be of the front of the home or a prominent view. Our MLS doles out fines for offenders. Maybe you should work with your local MLS to solve the problem.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Sep 29, 2010
Rubby, It's just plain lazyness. If you go to the home to list it, please take photos. I alway have the minimum 12 photos, all identified as to what room it is and room sizes. The lack of room sizes really annoys me. If you're there , do these little things that mean so much in marketing your listing. I ask all of my clients to check their listing on the public web sites and let me know if they want any changes. Sure it's extra work, but worth it. BarbaraqFitzgibbon, Broker-Associate,Sewell, N.J.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Sep 29, 2010
Unfortunately, that is the height of laziness....Sellers deserve all the agent's support. On a personal note I bring in the professionals for all my listings. Photos are key when people are searching for homes..
Did you interview the agent prior to listing? Do you have a list of questions? You are hiring an agent to market and sell your house. If they do not provide the quality of service you request....Fire them.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Sep 29, 2010
A couple situation -

1) If there is an urgency in listing the house and there is NO time at all to take pictures. But the agent should go back and take nice pictures to put on MLS soon after

2) If the property is in such a shape where pictures both inside and outside will discourage people to come and see the house

3) Tenant occupied, where there is no internal pictures, but the agent should be able to take external pictures.

0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Sep 28, 2010
Sylvia Barry,…, Real Estate Pro in Marin County, CA
Our MLS will send violation notices out to agents who don't have a photo of the home in the MLS listing. Also one photo must be of the outside of the home.

I think this behavior is terrible for our industry. I can't understand what type of seller would even allow an agent to represent them this way.

I won't enter a listing into the MLS until I have all of the photos ready to go. I explain the importance of this to the sellers. With all of the syndication we have from our MLS, it's important to have the photos in place from the get go.
Web Reference: http://www.jameswehner.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Sep 28, 2010
You always have to have a picture, the main attraction on selling a property. You need at least 10 photos to get a good feel for the home your are looking for or selling.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Sep 28, 2010
Our office does NOT allow an agent to list a property without the photos.
The agent is doing a HUGE disservice to the client by doing that. Bad juju.

Web Reference: http://hawaiihome.biz/
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Sep 28, 2010
I am not one of those Realtors you are referring to....I always put 12 photos on the MLS for my listings.
Web Reference: http://savannahgahomes.net
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Sep 26, 2010
Dear Rubby,

I share your frustration and can't understand why agents post without pictures. Although I have to say that sometimes there is a glitch with the feed that occurs when uploading to the public internet sites, like Trulia. I know that I have to check my listings each time to make sure they are showing up with the pictures. As should every Realtor who takes on the responsibility of selling an owner's house. I am shocked at how many Sellers never take the time to go into the public sites to make sure their Realtor is marketing their home in a way that will entice Buyers to take a look.

0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Sep 26, 2010
I have to say that I always try to present the home in the best light with ample quality photos and cusotmized description and agree that it is VERY unprofessional for a Realtor not to take photos (or hire a professional). Additionally some Realtors do not pay the extra marketing fee on Realtor.com that allows customized descriptions and multiple photos.

I often take my client out to show them properties that don't have great photos because many times we are pleasantly suprised. Other agents that don't show those homes may be missing out on the perfect house for their buyer.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Sep 26, 2010
I personally don't think there's any excuse for not having pictures. I always get nice pictures and I end up feeling so sorry for the poor sellers who are trusting an agent with the sale of their home and they can't take an hour to go out and get good pictures. It reflects on all of us.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Sep 25, 2010
The only reasoning I could see behind it would be due to bad weather, or not being able to get a good clear photo due to lighting (this happens more often during the winter months). I would still think that an ugly photo is better than none, but at the same time first impression goes a long way. I'm surprised sellers aren't always on top of this making sure everything that can possibly be done is getting done in order to get their home sold... then again, they shouldn't have to, that's what we are paid to do.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Sep 25, 2010
My fellow agents and I ask that same question all the time. I don't know if it comes down to an agent not knowing any better, laziness or if it is an agent who has many listings and doesn't do the "leg work" themselves. For instance, agents who handle many REO bank owned listings or just list in volume may be using an assistant. Unfortunately, assistants may not be thinking about the goal (the sale) or may not be viewing things in the same light that a commissioned agent would look at it. For example, marketing and showcasing the home in its best light in order to facilitate the sale quickly. Ultimately, we always do the work ourselves, take photos, place the sign and lockbox, enter the listing data. I think in this market, that is a key factor and important to both buyers and sellers. They want an agent who is truly knowledgeable about their listings. Our team is smaller, but is always 'hands on" and I would rather strive to be better than bigger.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Sep 25, 2010
Great question. I am a professional real estate agent. I would never send a listing to a client that did not have an exterior shot of the house. If the interior photographs are not clear and well-lighted, I don't show the house either. Why put up blurry photographs? The ones I love best are the agents who put up five exterior photos in a row. No, better, the agents who upload photographs with the toilet seat up and the house a total mess. Ladies and gentlemen, if you want to sell the property, you have to stage it and then edit the photographs. Put your flash on. This is what separates you from the pact.

Bruce Levitt
Coldwell Banker
120 Newark Avenue
Jersey City, NJ 07302
973-710-2293 cell phone
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Sep 25, 2010
Rubby - Our MLS requires that listings have the pictures within three days or the agent is subject to a fine. In my opinion, it's not policed enough. Agents who enter listings without pictures are not doing justice to their listings or their clients. I promise, you'll never find one of my listings without pictures. Carolyn, Bella Vista
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Sep 24, 2010
Hey Rubby,

I agree with just about everyone here, except maybe the guy in Miami. If a property needed to get up immediately, like in less than a week, I can SORT of see them not getting an opportunity to get out and get a photo. But a property that has been up for weeks or MONTHS and STILL no photo or only one photo?!?! That's just laziness and poor salesmanship. Even if it's a foreclosure and the bank doesn't care if there are no photos, why would any agent want that property to just sit there and not make them money?

On our MLS system in the DC area, we can put up to 30 photos and I never put fewer than 20. The photos are what will get potential buyers interested in the property and most of my clients won't even give a property one look, much less a second one, if there are no photos, unless it just came on the market and I urge them to.

Listings with no photos, to me, mean that property is going to just sit there and drop in price. Maybe that's a reason to keep an eye on them???

0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Sep 24, 2010
When 90%+ of all homebuyers are searching online for their dream home, multiple pictures are extremely important. In my opinion, this should also be done with professional photography as well. I would say only a small percentage of agents are using pro photography for their listings. And I can’t believe how many multi-million dollar listings are put on the MLS with poor photography or just 1 outside photo-- Blows my mind. If I was a homebuyer, there would be a high probability that I might skip seeing the property.

My newest listing in Santa Monica with pro photography … http://www.1541Centinela.com was put on yesterday. I haven’t even had a showing yet and I already have two buyers who may be interested in putting in an offer. All because they saw the virtual tour first, as it gave them a good feel of what it’s like to be in the property before actually going to see it.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Sep 24, 2010
Your question could have several different answers. Maybe the Realtor is from the pre-internet days and either doesn't believe in it (yet). (I've heard this from some Realtors and am incredulous that such people can make a living at real estate). Or it could be that the house is in terrible shape. Yet even when a house is in really bad shape--you'll often see exterior pix at least. Or it could be that the Realtor is having great photos made but just doesn't have them up and running yet. I was confronted with this dilemma the other day with a new listing. I told the owner that we would be up and running on Monday but didn't get the pix till Tuesday. I delayed listing the house for that exact reason. You often only have one chance to be in front of a buyer's agent online or a consumer. Don't mess it up by having the most crucial day (the first) on the market photo-less.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Sep 24, 2010
Some sellers request that you do not take pictures of the property. We have to abide by the sellers wishes since we are representing them. They may not want their neighbors to know they are moving or selling the property.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Sep 24, 2010
The information that is most important to buyers when they are looking for a home is photos. The more photos and the more appealing the photos, the more likely the home is to be chosen by potential buyers for them to go see. A real estate agent who does not post a lot of photos that are well taken simply is not doing his or her job.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Sep 24, 2010
With today's technology, it makes no sense not to have photos. I see a lot of agents who work with foreclosures only have one photo which still make my buyers question why only one photo. Frankly it annoys me as well and I feel they are doing their client/seller a disservice. Great question. Wish the answer had more of a solid answer.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Sep 24, 2010
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