Another Good Reason to Fire Your Real Estate Agent

by hookedonhouses on March 11, 2010

window at night

When I see a real estate listing with photos like these, from a $475,000 house in Massachusetts, I’m amazed that the agents who took them are still in business. Maybe they could get away with it back when the real estate market was hopping and everyone was buying whatever they listed, but now you have to put a little more effort into it. I mean, c’mon.

dark kitchenAs I looked through the photos of this house, I started to think that the agent may have been, um, impaired in some way. I’m trying to understand why she would take a photo of a kitchen in the dark? Or the back deck at night, without a flash? And then–worse–add them to her client’s listing?

fuzzy deck photoSeriously. What kind of agent takes a photo of a bedroom ceiling?light fixture-ceiling

The family cat…

cat on printerAnd herself?

realtor in mirror

If that’s not a good reason to fire your real estate agent, I don’t know what is. (If you missed it, here was the first Good Reason to Fire Your Real Estate Agent.)

P.S. Thanks to Terry, the reader who sent me this listing. If you find something unusual in the real estate listings, send me the link!

Check out my Bad MLS Photos page to see more!

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Stephanie March 11, 2010 at 8:04 am

Those are not good pics, i can’t believe a real estate agent would take those pics! That might be a good reason to fire her.
.-= Stephanie´s last blog ..Sweetest unique gift for your granny, mema, nanny =-.

Beth@The Stories of A2Z March 11, 2010 at 8:08 am

Oh my goodness too funny! I love these posts of yours because they always make me laugh out loud. In defense of the agent (which is kind of hard here), what homeowner leaves their house such a wreck when selling? Plenty, I know. I’ve moved more times than I can count and grew up looking at houses (plus my mom was a realtor) and sooooo many were just awful inside. Expensive and messy just don’t mix. Clean your house people (says the lady in her bathrobe and currently very messy home ;).
.-= Beth@The Stories of A2Z´s last blog ..Making Wine Cork Boards =-.

Amanda @ Serenity Now March 11, 2010 at 8:09 am

Oh. my. gosh. That shows a serious lack of judgement. I can’t decide which one is the worst. I’m wondering if she took the ceiling photo b/c the bottom half of the room didn’t look right??? I’m at a loss….

Kelley March 11, 2010 at 8:10 am

No kidding. Those images are terrible. I can’t imagine that their services would be less sloppy.

Michelle March 11, 2010 at 8:34 am

Yikes that’s terrible! The pictures are so important, I used to take a ton of them to make sure I had just the right angle and feeling. And that was when real estate was hopping!

This chick needs a lesson!
~Michelle
.-= Michelle´s last blog ..So the lion fell in love with the lamb…. =-.

Sarah @ Dream In Domestic March 11, 2010 at 8:38 am

That’s bad!!! They would be gone very quickly if it were me.
.-= Sarah @ Dream In Domestic´s last blog ..Light, Airy, and Feminine Bedrooms =-.

Beverly from Montreal March 11, 2010 at 8:44 am

Seems as if this agent, and her clients, couldn’t care less what impression the photos give perspective buyers. If they were really serious about selling, they would have made the effort to tidy up the rooms a bit. It is very telling that the agent, after looking at the awful photos she took, would go ahead and post them anyway. The one showing her reflection in the mirror also appears to be reflecting some sort of cityscape. If that’s the case, why not showcase the view instead of the clueless agent? Sorry, but this makes me a little angry.

Katie March 11, 2010 at 8:57 am

Hahaha! If there is a picture of the ceiling, it makes you wonder what they aren’t showing that’s on the floor….. hmmm….
.-= Katie´s last blog ..Central Park =-.

Trish March 11, 2010 at 9:02 am

Another licensed Real Estate Broker here. I see these types of pictures almost every day. We have a couple of extremely high priced homes for sale in our area and I am embarrassed of the photos the agent took. We have a photographer here in town who specializes in taking real estate photos and for a few hundred dollars you can have him come out and do your photos. Well worth it for a million dollar plus priced property in our area. In this day and age of digital photography where you can take literally hundreds of shots there is no excuse for photos like these!

Ramona Owen March 11, 2010 at 9:15 am

Definitely NOT eye candy….more like needle in the eye. And, unbelievable.

Smiles ~ Ramona
.-= Ramona Owen´s last blog ..There Is A Bunny Trail ~ And There Is A Bunny Hippity Hoppin’ Down It =-.

molly b March 11, 2010 at 9:16 am

A couple of weeks ago when you posted the “best college towns” link, I went fantasy real-estate shopping in Beloit, WI and found a great house for a dirt-cheap price… but the pictures were horrible. There was underwear hanging from the racks in the bathroom and piles of clutter everywhere. I went to look at it again just now, and it’s been taken down. I don’t know if they sold it or just took down the listing to clean it up. :-)

janice | Sharing the Journey March 11, 2010 at 9:30 am

Mindblowing. Makes me want to head over and start a new career. I couldn’t do much worse!
.-= janice | Sharing the Journey´s last blog ..Writers Write (Revisited): Your Comments are Part of Your Writing Mosaic =-.

Lauryn March 11, 2010 at 9:35 am

I agree with Beverly, from what you can see in the photos it looks like neither the buyer or seller is very serious about getting the place sold. I absolutely hate listing where people have SO much cr*p all over the place. Sometimes I stumble across listings and the person’s house looks more cluttered than the knick knack section at my local Goodwill. I can understand having to live in the place while it’s on the market but things you don’t use daily should be packed and stored.
.-= Lauryn´s last blog ..Little Bit of Nature =-.

middle sister March 11, 2010 at 9:37 am

That’s hysterical! Especially a photo of the agent. It doesn’t get any better (or worse). The key word for this project is “editing”. (Ya think?)

Sheila March 11, 2010 at 9:38 am

LOVE it! I can always count on a good laugh from your MLS findings. And hey, I don’t blame the lady in the mirror; she’s probably just trying to get her face out there for more work. Ha!
.-= Sheila´s last blog ..Wash vs. Warsh =-.

Robin @ My Blessed Nest March 11, 2010 at 9:50 am

All I can say is, “WOW!!!!!” Oh, and, “DUH?!!!!!!!!!!!!”
.-= Robin @ My Blessed Nest´s last blog ..Crafty Birds =-.

Janell Beals March 11, 2010 at 9:56 am

Are these for real, and for a $475,000 house? Yes, they would be fired straight up in my world! When we put our house on the market I was so disappointed with the photos I quick sent my versions over and the agent went out that day and bought a new camera!
Janell
.-= Janell Beals´s last blog ..Goodbye To The Plain Walls – Big Boy’s Bedroom =-.

Anna March 11, 2010 at 9:57 am

This is simply unacceptable people depend on their agent to sell their homes and represent them to the fullest extent. As I was briefing through theses pics I thought wow this place must be full of hidden gems ( know as faults and repair), not only does it make the home look less appealing but it also shows how this agent carries her work professionally.

jeanne March 11, 2010 at 9:59 am

Not only that…how about telling the owners to clean up their home first:-)

Beth March 11, 2010 at 10:00 am

Here in Massachusetts, photos like that aren’t that uncommon, even for houses around $1 million. We moved back here after living in Seattle, and the difference in the real estate listings is amazing. In Seattle, almost all houses over $600,000 are professionally photographed. In Mass, I’d guess just a small percentage of even the most expensive homes are professionally photographed. I’ve been seriously considering real estate photography as a career, but I don’t think anyone here will pay for it. Too bad–houses sell so much quicker, and for top dollar when staged and photographed by a pro.

Gwen Rubenstein March 11, 2010 at 10:02 am

This has got to be a joke!!

Sara @ Russet Street Reno March 11, 2010 at 10:11 am

I have to wonder if this agent did this on purpose. Maybe as revenge for the homeowners not cleaning up ANY of their stuff before she came to take pics? Or maybe she is selling her ex husband’s house or something. Either way, I can’t imagine she is seriously trying to sell this house. Sometimes I feel bad for the agents who have to deal with crazy people that won’t clean up or declutter….many agents earn their commission and then some dealing with the crazies!
.-= Sara @ Russet Street Reno´s last blog ..LavenDon’t =-.

Pat March 11, 2010 at 10:11 am

I seriously think I could do better….and I’m a poor photographer!
Yep, I’d be looking for a new agent!
.-= Pat´s last blog ..Say Cheese! =-.

rachel March 11, 2010 at 10:14 am

so the realtor is crazy, for sure… but what person owns a 475,000 home & then decorates it like a dorm room?? tv on the floor, junk on all the counters? looks more like a frat house! maybe the realtor was trying to take some of the heat off the home decor being substandard! : )
.-= rachel´s last blog ..ummm… tuesday thoughts =-.

annie March 11, 2010 at 10:17 am

That’s CRAZY! At first I wondered how you knew it was a woman real estate agent, until I saw the self portrait in the last picture. YIKES!!~! what a sloppy horrible mess.

Laurie @ My Domicile Style March 11, 2010 at 10:21 am

I think she took a picture of the ceiling because the room was a disaster! Not sure how they expect to sell that house, unless the market is super tight and people will buy anything!
.-= Laurie @ My Domicile Style´s last blog ..Pickled Apricots =-.

Bailey March 11, 2010 at 10:30 am

I mean that is just ridiculous
.-= Bailey´s last blog ..Thank Buddha, It’s Spring: I Suwannee =-.

annie March 11, 2010 at 10:38 am

but, after looking at those photos, I have to agree with the others that it reflects on the owner as well. I wouldn’t have my house look like that if I knew someone was coming with a camera.
.-= annie´s last blog ..Impressive =-.

Janet March 11, 2010 at 11:40 am

Another Realtor in Massachusetts chiming in….I DO ask the sellers to clean up and to let me help them stage it and they usually refuse to see the need. The claim is “if it’s good enough for us, it should be good enough for the buyer”. Aaaargghhh!! My pictures may not be professionally done, but they are certainly better than these!! Do not get me started ;)
.-= Janet´s last blog ..PROGRESS =-.

Susan March 11, 2010 at 11:42 am

Looking for real estate is exhausting. My husband and I once made an appointment to visit a listing with a broker. When we arrived the house was filthy, but to make matters worse, the inhabitants were still in bed! We were very embarrassed, yet they were completely at ease in the situation. The broker even mentioned that he showed the house once before when the owners were still in bed! Needless to say, we had no further interest in the property.

Love,
Susan and Bentley
xxoo
.-= Susan´s last blog ..Cheerful Red Touches in the Kitchen =-.

Morning T March 11, 2010 at 11:44 am

You have to be kidding me!! Yikes.
.-= Morning T´s last blog ..Pretty things~going once, going twice… =-.

Becky @ Farmgirl Paints March 11, 2010 at 12:40 pm

Four words for you…What were they thinking??? Funny post Julia. I never tire of visiting “you”.
.-= Becky @ Farmgirl Paints´s last blog ..Prescription for Contentment =-.

Karena March 11, 2010 at 12:45 pm

I would cancel the listing and get another broker! I took images of some of my works of art late one night w plenty of lighting etc. They were horrible and I started over next day w clear daylight, no flash and voila!!
Karena
Art by Karena

Julia I have a work up, come see and follow!

Hip Hip Gin Gin March 11, 2010 at 12:58 pm

I’m sorry to say real estate agents in Mass have been sitting pretty without trying for so many years that I’m not at all surprised at the non-effort behind those photos. I would definitely be firing this lady asap! There will be a lot of former brokers soon, once they realize that real estate is not easy money, not anymore. With listings like this I can’t possibly imagine what she is grinning about in that last photo??
.-= Hip Hip Gin Gin´s last blog ..Becky Kelso =-.

Jenny March 11, 2010 at 12:58 pm

These are hilarious! What an idiot, those are the worst pics ever. I hope the clients fire her.
.-= Jenny´s last blog ..Links I Like: 5th Edition =-.

Lauren March 11, 2010 at 1:21 pm

This has got to be a joke. I’ve met cows with more common sense than that.
.-= Lauren´s last blog ..Duped =-.

linda@LimeintheCoconut March 11, 2010 at 1:26 pm

O.M.G

no other words…’cept…you’re fired.
.-= linda@LimeintheCoconut´s last blog ..A chair symphony in four parts…Or…are you bored yet? =-.

Isa March 11, 2010 at 2:37 pm

Now, I know that I have super high expectations, but come ON – there is absolutely no excuse for that. Sing it, Mr. Trump…. “YOU’RE FIRED!” hehe
xo Isa
.-= Isa´s last blog ..Oh, GIve Me a Home…. =-.

Nathan March 11, 2010 at 2:40 pm

I’m guessing the picture of the ceiling was to show that sloped part – why else would it be included (although, why would she post ANY of those pictures, lol).

Kim March 11, 2010 at 2:44 pm

This lady has a nice camera, but yet she didn’t make an effort to take good pictures? I mean come on, even I could do a better job then that. If I were the homeowners, I would have made this real-tor take better pictures and if she still didn’t do a good enough job, then I would have fired her. Also the homeowners need to make an effort to make their house less messy.

I can’t tell you how many times I have been looking at houses online and come across listings, where the pictures could have been better. I mean I have seen plenty of blurry pictures. Makes me want to take over and take much better job. I guess some people just don’t have that magic eye when it comes time to taking photos, like a lot of us on this site, which makes me wonder why these people ever became a real-tor in the first place. Sorry I just can’t stand it when I see a poorly done listing.

Kelly March 11, 2010 at 3:00 pm

I’ve seen quiet a few million plus houses with crappy pics like this. I just don’t get it.
.-= Kelly´s last blog ..1909 School, Forestville, WI =-.

seanymph March 11, 2010 at 3:03 pm

I love when they photo the family pets……why? do they come with the house? lol And Ive seen some where the houses were just full of stuff all over……come on, do you really think someone wants to see all that junk? I mean if these people are pack rats or slobs……then say the house needs work and you have to see it for yourself. Or another one……..they highlight a piece of art or furniture but it doesnt come with the house. Why bother?

Rachel March 11, 2010 at 3:04 pm

Oh my gosh – that is crazy! It almost looks like she is laughing in the last picture. Maybe she knows how terrible the pics are! :)

Kat in Texas March 11, 2010 at 3:15 pm

Oh, my stars! If that woman knew her stuff about real estate marketing, she would have told the owners to clean up the place before she arrived to take photos. And put the cat in a pet carrier and stash him in the laundry room. Horrible lighting, horrible photos. Next time, hire a professional! I’m surprised the broker for whom she works allowed her to post them. Unless, of course, she owns the firm. In that case, I wonder how many of her listings actually close?

Kat in Texas March 11, 2010 at 3:19 pm

P.S., The last time I was house hunting, my agent and I walked into a home which was cluttered to the ceiling and dirty. One look at the teenage boy lying on the sofa watching TV and munching on Cheetos was enough for both of us. We turned and left.

the zhush March 11, 2010 at 5:05 pm

These are INSANE! Its like their agent is Punkin’ them…Ashton style!
.-= the zhush´s last blog ..Meet the Locals =-.

Kristen @ More Than Mulberries March 11, 2010 at 5:05 pm

I’m not even an agent and I could sell that home faster than her. For more money too! Wouldn’t be hard – those are pretty funny!
.-= Kristen @ More Than Mulberries´s last blog ..The Things I Say Yes To… =-.

Beckie March 11, 2010 at 5:52 pm

I want to move my house to Massachusetts if that is the kind of money that house brings! My sister’s agent put horrible pictures up of their house, but made her do them over. She also listed the house for 3 times the price that they were asking. That was a typo, but wasn’t caught until after the house was listed in the MLS book. No wonder no one wanted to see the house. Once corrected info & pic, house sold in 2 days. Pictures can make a difference.
.-= Beckie´s last blog ..Inherited From my Grandmother =-.

Lesley @ TheDesignFile March 11, 2010 at 6:10 pm

This is almost like a joke it’s so bad. Seriously? What’s wrong with people?
.-= Lesley @ TheDesignFile´s last blog ..Tips to make your home more appealing to a buyer =-.

Stacy D March 11, 2010 at 6:13 pm

Ha! Too funny! Love the picture of the agent. She can’t blame the bad pictures on anyone. The proof is right there…she definitely took ‘em!
.-= Stacy D´s last blog ..A Really Big Post Part 2 =-.

rh March 11, 2010 at 6:21 pm

Wow, I especially like the deck. Looks like she captured ghosts. But the one of her with the camera? Priceless.
.-= rh´s last blog ..DIY Linkorama =-.

Suzette March 11, 2010 at 6:40 pm

Doesn’t look like the house was picked up too well before she came over! Maybe she was doing the sellers a favor by not photographing all their mess!

Sarah March 11, 2010 at 7:16 pm

Wow, those are really really bad. I live in MA- now I’m wondering who the realtor is and in what town!
.-= Sarah´s last blog ..let’s pretend =-.

Robin March 11, 2010 at 7:46 pm

Wow, Julia, unbelievable! I was down on my knees making sure I had any dust from the corners on the floor before my realtor came to take pics of the B&B that we are selling.
Robin
.-= Robin´s last blog .. =-.

Puna March 11, 2010 at 8:35 pm

Oh my. Hide the animals, I say again, hide the animals.
.-= Puna´s last blog ..March 11, Arch De Chine =-.

Ann March 11, 2010 at 9:07 pm

OMG, the horror! Moral of the story: Definitely check a realtor’s photos before hiring them.

Cheryl March 11, 2010 at 9:31 pm

Hi, I am a Real Estate Agent in Massachusetts going for my Brokers License. I do have to say that these pictures are horrible and do the home no justice at all.
The broker in that office, should have picked up on these photos and let her know that these are unacceptable. She gives Real Estate Agents a bad name. Not all of us are like that, I give my sellers a list of things to do to improve their home, I offer adice in Staging and would not be afraid to tell them I cannot take pictures of certain things, and certain things will turn potential buyers away. These pictures will not sell that home. But, please just know that some of us are professionals in what we do and we love what we do.
All I can think is maybe she is NEW and needs a mentor to help her
And, NO these are not my pictures nor my listing
Cheryl,
.-= Cheryl´s last blog ..The Clock’s Ticking on Homebuyer Tax Credits =-.

angela | the painted house March 11, 2010 at 10:34 pm

Wow, oh, wow. Looks like she is smiling in her self portrait.
.-= angela | the painted house´s last blog ..The Beginning of the Rainbow =-.

Erin @ House Affairs March 11, 2010 at 10:56 pm

Look at how the agent is smiling in the last photo. Is she doing this as a joke? I mean, really, what agent in their right mind would post these photos??? By the way, LOVE, LOVE, LOVE your blog!!! I took the quiz some time ago and I passed with flying colors!
.-= Erin @ House Affairs´s last blog ..Getting My Feet Wet =-.

Annie@A View on Design March 11, 2010 at 11:58 pm

oh I love that, specially the one of herself, like there is no doubt who is responsible for it when you have a pic of them!!!
.-= Annie@A View on Design´s last blog ..The USA has it all… =-.

desiree March 12, 2010 at 12:10 am

These are horrible! How do these agents stay in business? Seriously–how do they get hired!???

Billy March 12, 2010 at 1:36 am

Did the listing mention a tenant and require a lot of notice to show?
The self portrait looks like someone not knowing that if you take a flash pic of a great view through a high E window, you get a pic of yourself.
I wonder if the client is being insistent that that pix are taken and posted but not willing to clean up for them. Anyway to see the agents other listings.

But is this any worse than $4,000k listings with pix from an iPhone?

Gail McCormack March 12, 2010 at 1:45 am

Hi Julia
I’m planning to do another post on Fig Tree Cottage, I have more photos of the beautiful garden, I’d love to do a link to your post you did a few months ago, I’ll have to go back and find it

I loved this post you’ve done
The photos are so very bad, I’m wondering if it was a ploy to get people’s attention – if so, I’d say it worked, I know if I was in the area, I’d want to view that property in person!

love your blog ~ Gail
.-= Gail McCormack´s last blog ..Fig Tree Cottage =-.

grissell March 12, 2010 at 10:47 am

brAHAHAHA Seriously! Have them clean up alittle too instead of taking a pic of the ceiling LMAO….
.-= grissell´s last blog ..Random thoughts, I have very LOW number of entries of some of giveaways.. ENTER odds are good… :) =-.

Kathy :) March 12, 2010 at 12:01 pm

She’s either a new agent……or someone better check her purse for a flask (lol) !!!!

Kathy :)

Susan March 13, 2010 at 10:42 am

Wow…what were they thinking? I don’t think folks will exactly be rushing out to view that home.

Jen March 13, 2010 at 10:50 am

Wow, this is pretty sad. I wonder what the house actually looks like…
.-= Jen´s last blog ..Tweet Tweet for the Week =-.

Amy March 14, 2010 at 9:52 am

They’re so bad that I have to wonder if it’s a foreclosure.
.-= Amy´s last blog ..Sprung forward. =-.

Leslie May 29, 2010 at 10:46 pm

Hi, I’m new here, but I’ve been enjoying your posts! I have to say those photos are really bad. What were they thinking?! I’ve been looking at a lot of real estate sites lately, and for a potential buyer it can be very frustrating if there aren’t sufficient photos to show what the houses look like. It’s like they’re either taking pictures of a corner of the room, so you can’t tell what room it is or what it looks like, or they’re too dark or blurry. I’ve even looked at some that promise 25 pictures, only to find out it’s 25 duplicates of the same photo, aaahhh!! Sorry for ranting, lol!

Samanth Kalamaras March 2, 2011 at 6:14 pm

Wow, I am so excited about this website! My stager told me about it and it is so funny! I am an agent in the Northern Suburbs of Chicago and I know how important photos are, this is just unbelievable. That being said, it is a great laugh for me and reminds me that they way I do it is right and the best service I can provide my clients! :)
~Samantha

Renee April 4, 2011 at 3:43 pm

I love looking at MLS listings in my area. You can always find some that make you say “What were they thinking!!?!!? I love it!

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