Active Rain

I started blogging not to long ago, recently followed by another but similar blog on ActiveRain. Active Rain is a Real Estate Network, tons of great people on there and lots of good ideas and information. Not only that but I have some connected with some friends and made some new friends. If you are in the real estate profession at all, I highly recommend checking it out!


Where's the Virtual Tour?!

One thing I have heard lately is "I have a listing but, it's not worth a virtual tour". This is something I don't understand, because that is exactly the house that needs a virtual tour! Not only should those big beautiful houses get virtual tours, but those little homes need them also. Nothing makes a drab home look worse than out of focus, dark, distorted, less than good photos. Well composed, well exposed, professionally edited photos can really show the real potential that a home has and get those buyers in there!

Something I feel strongly about is that your client wants to know that you are doing the best to market their home. However, something else I think should cross realtor's minds is this...Do home buyers think that if a realtor doesn't feel a home is worth professional photos and virtual tours, maybe it's not even worth looking at?

Believe it or not, there were many times when I have heard someone looking for a new place say, "if it doesn't have a virtual tour than I don't even waste my time." Believe me this wasn't said by my friends to make me feel better as a virtual tour photographer. I have heard this from co-workers and people in general. I used to work for Realtor.com and their apartment and rental site. One thing we wondered was why take the time to post a listing or apartment online, and not take full advantage of that internet marketing and post virtual tours and photos? From what I understand purchasing a quality virtual tour is less expensive than posting a listing in a real estate magazine or in a newspaper for the length of time a house is for sale.

It seems simple to me. It's your job to market that house to the best of your ability, and it's our job as photographers to make that marketing even better! Now I know I am very enthusiastic about virtual tours, but there are so many times when I just don't understand... why you haven't ordered your virtual tours yet!



I have been a Real Estate photographer for only 4 years but, I have been taking photographs for as long as I can remember. I met some of my best friends in photography school. It's a career, but also a hobby that I have been lucky to share with people very important to me. My father was a very talented photographer although he didn't always see it. I think my sister and I both inherited his talent but there are times when I think my sister got more of it. Now I love my photography if you don't mind me being a little less than modest, but she has this natural style that amazes me constantly. A few years ago I was able to take the trip of my dreams to Europe with my sister. We packed up our photography gear and trucked around England, France, Italy, Germany, Switzerland, and Austria for over three months. Now I am sitting on a couple thousand photos that many people haven't ever seen. So I thought I might start showing those off just so you can see a different side to me.


Home Staging

It used to be that the only time I saw staging was in larger apartment buildings. Now I am seeing staging a lot more. I think one of the best things to do when selling your home or renting an apartment is staging. on average staged homes sell faster and for higher prices than non staged homes.

Why stage your home? What you want to do is create a setting that inspires the visitor to imagine themselves living there. You want to show your house in it's best light. By taking out your personal mementos you are making room for the visitor to visualize their things there.

Staging is becoming much more popular and much more affordable! What was once reserved for large companies is now available and more widely used by the public. Still not sure about staging? Try these tips from "Get Staged to Sell" ...


  1. Clear all unnecessary objects from furniture throughout the house. Keep decorative objects on the furniture restricted to groups of 1, 3, or 5 items.
  2. Clear all unnecessary objects from kitchen countertops, tubs, shower stalls and commode tops. Keep only your most needed cosmetics, brushes, perfumes etc., in one small group on the counter. Coordinate towels to one or two colors only.
  3. Rearrange or remove some of the furniture if necessary. As owners, many times we have too much furniture in a room. This is wonderful for our own personal enjoyment, but when it comes to selling we need to thin out as much as possible to make rooms appear larger.
  4. Take down or rearrange certain pictures or objects on walls. Patch and paint if necessary.
  5. Review the inside of the house room by room
  6. Paint any room needing paint.
  7. Clean carpets or drapes that need it.
  8. Clean Windows.
  9. If you need room to store extra possessions use the garage or rent a storage unit.
  10. Leave on certain lights during the day. During “showings” turn on all lights and lamps.
  11. Have the stereo FM on during the day for all viewings.


  1. Go around the perimeter of the house and move all garbage cans, discarded wood scraps, extra building materials, etc., into the garage.
  2. Check gutters for roof moss and dry rot. Make sure they are swept and cleaned.
  3. Look at all plants...prune bushes and trees. Keep plants from blocking windows. You can’t sell a house if you can’t see it! Plants are like children—they grow so fast!
  4. Weed and then mulch all planting areas. Keep the lawn freshly cut and fertilized. Remove dead plants or shrubs.
  5. Clear patios or decks of all small items, such as small planters, flower pots, charcoal, barbecues, toys etc. (Put them in the garage or a storage unit.)
  6. Check the paint condition of the house—especially the front door and trim. Curb appeal really works!