Great Photography = Fewer Vacancies

February 3, 2017
by Mac Mischke

At Threshold, the Anti-Vacancy Agency, we know that great photography is the basis of good advertising to attract your future residents.  As the saying goes,  “People buy with their eyes.” Even though they may not be making a decision to purchase, they will be drawn to high quality imagery of your property in their search for their next sanctuary. Great photography = fewer vacancies.

How attractive is your property “profile” photo?

If you are perusing profiles on an online dating site, besides reading clever bios, you’ll more likely be attracted to those with a lovely, current photo aren’t you? Appearances may not be everything, but it’s a good basis to begin, isn’t it? The same philosophy applies to your property “presence” on and offline. We must always have beautiful, up-to-date images to present to our potential renters. As branding and marketing experts, Threshold is ready to get you all the attention your property deserves.

How current are your photos?

When was the last time your student housing community multi-family apartment complex, senior living facility or single family home development was photographed? The last time you completed a renovation? That’s not often enough. If a client arrives on site, having seen seedling trees on your web site, yet you have mature shading oaks, you have short-changed your public image. If you’ve got it, flaunt it! Plan to photograph your community every time you have a change of season. People love coziness from the winter cold, enjoy strolls through the trees during fall color, gazing at fresh flower gardens in the spring, and will visualize themselves beating the heat in your turquoise pool in summer. Help them channel their future lifestyle!

If you do have regularly scheduled photos taken, have you positively portrayed all of the amenities you offer? …that Olympic-size pool, gleaming high-rise tower, well-appointed apartment, state-of-the-art game room, and lavish landscaping…

Why not?

Okay. So where do you begin if you are photography-challenged? Ask yourself these questions:

What is your properties’ strongest selling point? Facilities? Amenities? Location? Lifestyle? The strategy to promote each of these is very different AND each requires a different STYLE of photography. See examples below:

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So, you have your strategy in place, are you ready for a photographer? Not yet.

First, make a comprehensive list of property features you wish to promote and photograph:

  • Amenities (swimming pool, fitness center, cardio/yoga spaces)
  • Model room interiors (flat screen TVs, kitchens, bedrooms, living areas, balconies, baths)
  • Public room interiors (club houses, venues, dog parks)
  • Prominent landscapes (vistas, luxurious gardens, lakes, trees)
  • Notable architecture, monuments, nearby universities
  • Do you want to include models in the shoot? What is your plan to recruit models (professional models or residents and/or staff members)?

Once your list is complete, we will plan a photo shoot that maximizes the best time of day to capture all on your list so that you have a gorgeous library of images at your fingertips for every marketing and advertising occasion.

What’s the secret of gorgeous images of building exteriors, interiors, landscaping and portraiture? The time of day the photos were taken.

Best times of day for great photos? Low light.

Low light is between 7am and 10am, and again from 4pm to 7pm. This is the best natural light to showcase your property. Long graceful shadows drape across architectural details, golden sunlight trace the edges of your beautiful landscaping and people will glow with warm sunlight on their shoulders. Otherwise, between 11am and 3pm, the sun beats down, creating harsh shadows on faces, bleached-looking gardens and creates a near black-and-white color spectrum. Even interior shots can be a challenge because the light through the windows is too strong. See examples below:

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A word about resolution.

Even though cell phone cameras are making amazing advances, in order to use your photos for print and web, the resolution must be at least 12 megapixels. Even then, phone cameras have limited crispness. It is best to hire a professional photographer with high-resolution and light adjustment capabilities to insure your property always looks its best! And technology is only part of capturing quality images – the composition is key to capturing the best pictures. A high-resolution picture is all for not, if the composition of the picture is off.

Take a step in the direction towards a vacancy-free community, and schedule your photo shoot today with Threshold.