Last week I was standing on a gorgeous property. The flowers were blooming, the birds were chirping and the sun was shining. THIS YARD WAS POPPIN’! The owner had invited me over to consult about selling his home. After a lengthy tour and discussion, I dispensed my advice and he seemed happy and open to my suggestions. Then came the inevitable GIANT BUZZ-KILL. He says, (with a straight face mind you) “I can’t put it on until February.” O.K. February…. in…New York. Imagine my trusty photographer and I, stuffed into snowsuits, sliding down a patch of ice on the steep driveway as he photographs the icicles dangling off the gutters. Now try and sell that. This is not Boca. This is New York…in winter… with weather so chillingly harsh and visually drab that it has inspired an entirely new genre of depression called “Seasonal Affective Disorder.”
Your property has ‘visual value’ and you need to take advantage of this while it is at it’s peak! ( I thought I made ‘visual value’ up but I googled it and to my dismay it exists already. (I was getting so word weary from ‘curb appeal’ and in my mind this covers a broader spectrum.) Anyway, my departing words of advice to said homeowner – “Hire a professional photographer (I know a good one!) and take those exterior photos now!” (He thought that was brilliant idea too!) It makes sense on so many levels. First – when it comes to marketing – having high quality photos & video of your home in all it’s glory boosts that ‘visual value.’ Buyers are going click, call and flock to your home knowing it’s true potential. Secondly, unless you have a cash buyer, I guarantee you that one day you will have that crucial moment when an appraiser is going to photograph your home in the dead of winter (with no lights on because for some reason they never pump up the lights like I do..”Can I turn that light on for you?”…Grumpy appraiser..”No..Don’t matter”….me (gulp)..ok..You do your thing! I’ll just be right here waiting…” (armed with those good photos mind you!) He or she will not be using fancy filters and they will not be shooting inspired artistic shots of your home…Said appraiser may even be suffering from seasonal affective disorder as they angrily trudge across your property in a March blizzard. But (silver lining here) that appraiser will hopefully glean (from those proactive gorgeous photos your brilliant realtor suggested you take last spring) that your home has unseen added value (underneath that frozen tundra) because it is beautifully landscaped or you maybe you have a pool or a water feature or a water view that isn’t a giant frozen mass…. So, when you are ready for take-off, make your life (and quite frankly mine) easier by having those high quality beautiful photos on the ready and you will sell faster and most likely higher than the competition.
Sue Onderdonk, Real Estate Agent
P.S. – I cannot take credit for the photo below. I googled “house with icicles” and this popped up from Etsy. Credit goes to E. Clark (1940) – probably an appraiser in some God forsaken frozen tundra.