Picture Perfect – Listing Photo Tips That Sell

By: Dina Sosa – Broker  – Ivester Jackson | Christie’s Int’l Real Estate

dina sosa realtor broker ivester jackson christie's real estate
Dina Sosa – Ivester Jackson | Christie’s Int’l Real Estate

You’ve found the perfect listing agent and now its time for photos. This element is extremely important. Your listing agent will use these photos to advertise in print, showcase in MLS, and saturate the internet.

You want your home to be Picture Perfect.



 Entire House

  •  Turn all overhead lights and lamps on
  •  Replace all burned out light bulbs
  • Use bulbs of the same temperature (all incandescent or all compact fluorescent)
  •  Turn all ceiling fans off
  • Turn all TVs off
  • Turn all computer screens off
  • Open blinds and window treatments to let in outside light
  • Remove as many personal photographs
  • Remove small floor rugs to reveal actual flooring
  • Place all shoes and jackets in closets
  • Remove stacks of magazines, papers, mail, books, etc
  •  De-clutter fireplace mantel and hearth (no more than 5 items, including art)

 Dining Areas

Dining Room (2)


  • Around tables straighten all chairs and space evenly
  • Feature only one center piece on the dinning tables, fruit and flowers are nice options


071_Lake Level Kitchen & Billiards

  • Clear all countertops completely. No knife blocks, baking supplies, etc.
  • Leave out a max of one small appliance (ex. coffee maker)
  • Clear outside of the refrigerator of magnets, papers, photos, etc.
  • Hide garbage cans in pantry or closet if they are visible



master bath

  • Clear countertops completely. No soaps, toothbrushes, medications, etc.
  • All toilet seats down
  • Close closet doors
  • Remove shampoo, soap, loofahs, etc from the showers and bath tubs
  • Remove floor mats
  • Use only a few towels for decor


Gorgeous Outdoor Space

  • Close all garage doors
  • Remove cars from driveway and front of home
  • Remove visible water hoses
  • Remove toys, balls, bikes etc
  •  Turn on pool/water features
  • Remove trash cans
  • Tidy porches and outdoor furniture

back dusk

  • Turn on all interior and exterior lighting including all lamps
  • Turn on pool lights (if applicable) and turn on all water features
  •  Remove pool cleaning vacuums, nets, and tubes from pool
  • Turn on all landscape lighting. Double check the function of these prior to picture time
  • Turn on any exterior features, such as water fountains, waterfalls, etc.
  • If you have an outdoor fire feature, light the fires as they look nice burning
  • Remove covers from your outdoor furniture and grills if these items are in good condition
  • Compliment your outdoor space with decorative pillows
  • Make sure all outdoor furniture is evenly spaced and straightened
  • Open outdoor umbrellas
  • Stage your outdoor space with food or drink elements to showcase entertaining possibilities
  • Freshen your outdoor flowers and fill with colorful and lush plants
  • Do not water flowers within three hours prior to the shoot so they stay perky
  • Pick up and put away trashcans, toys, lawn equipment, and pool equipment
  • Make sure irrigation system is off. We like all surfaces to look consistent
  • Tidy up by sweeping surfaces and refreshening your mulch

10 Historic Homes for Sale in Charlotte, North Carolina

5520 Sharon View Road – Circa 1828


Dating to King George ll, the William Lee House, a richly appointed country house, is a piece of 18th century Charlotte.

Ivester Jackson | Christie's Int'l Real Estate
Ivester Jackson | Christie’s Int’l Real Estate

8556 Dog Leg Road – Nationally Registered Historic Farmhouse


One of the southeast’s most spectacular estates situated on 66 gated acres of rolling hills and horse pastures. (Sherrills Ford)

One of the southeast's most spectacular estates
Ivester Jackson | Christie’s Int’l Real Estate

625 Hermitage Court – Circa 1914


Completely renovated 1914 Neoclassical home with amazing architectural detail. (Myers Park)

Remarks Public Remarks: Completely renovated 1914 Neoclassical home with amazing architectural detail. Prime Myers Park location, 2 blocks from Duke Mansion
Listing Courtesy of Valerie Mitchener, HM Properties

500 Hermitage Road – Circa 1915


One of Charlotte’s finest homes. Light filled Tudor on a .76 acre flat, private lot. (Myers Park)

One of Charlotte's finest homes. Circa 1915. Light filled Tudor on a .76 acre flat, private lot.
Listing Courtesy of Patty Hendrix, HM Properties

 3600 Hampton Manor Drive – Circa 1951  


Incredible opportunity to acquire a piece of Charlotte’s history; the original estate of Hampton Manor. (Hampton Manor)

Incredible opportunity to acquire a piece of Charlotte's history; the original estate of Hampton Manor,
Listing Courtesy of Giles Barker, Premier Sothebys International

215 Ridgewood Avenue – Circa 1935


Casually elegant Don Duffy signature craftsmanship abounds in fantastic living spaces of this graciously updated estate home. (Myers Park)

Priced at Appraised Value. Casually elegant Don Duffy signature craftsmanship abounds in fantastic living spaces of this graciously updated (2010) Myers Park estate home.
Ivester Jackson | Christie’s Int’l Real Estate

 2100 The Plaza – Circa 1915


Bishop John C. Kilgo House is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. (Midwood)

2100 The Plaza
Listing Courtesy of Victoria Mitchener, Dickens Mitchener & Assoc. Inc

1418 Audubon Road – Circa 1955


Completely renovated Tudor/brick home on large flat lot in Cotswold. (Cotswold)

1418 audobon
Listing Courtesy of Laura Sammons, HM Properties

2404 Laburnum Ave – Circa 1946


This Chantilly home has it all,  including a beautiful Master Retreat, hardwood floors, and cooks kitchen. (Chantilly)

Listing Courtesy of Paige Sweet, ProStead Realty

1415 Coventry – Circa 1955


Fantastic 1.5 story remodeled Mid-Century home in the heart of Olde Cotswold. (Cotswold)

Listing Courtesy of Scott Pridemore, Pridemore Properties

The Ultra Luxury Market, Slowing or Growing?


The ultra luxury category has been the scene of much debate.

There has been much private discussion in the region’s real estate community about the conditions in the ultra luxury segment above $2 million in listed value.

Conditions in the range below $1 million are fairly well documented to be highly active, with many areas seeing very competitive buying markets and limited inventory.

The ultra luxury category has been the scene of much debate however, with some luxury agents speculating of a possible slow down.

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The data points do not appear to support a “slow down” in the classic sense of lower buyer activity, in fact recent showing activity, particularly in the 2m to 2.5m range shows just the opposite. That showings in 3 of the regions key ultra luxury areas, Cornelius, Charlotte, and Mooresville, are all running ahead of last year’s March to May period, in some cases by as much as 50%.

The below chart shows the relative increases in total showings in all three areas, according to the regional MLS showing statistics for all homes in the over $2 million range.

(Click Chart Below For Larger Image)

ultra lux Ivester Jackson Christie's Int'l Real Estate
Ultra Luxe Showings Over 2m Last 60 Days vs 2015

While this is encouraging, it’s not the entire picture.

The chart above describes total showings, which can also be impacted by the number of homes available to look at (i.e. if there are 5 homes listed and 2 buyers, the total showings will at most 10, but if there are 20 homes yet only 2 buyers, the total showings could be 40). So it is important to also consider the average number on a per home per basis.

In all 3 areas, the average runs roughly around 2-3 showings per month, and while this year’s average per home is up slightly in all 3 areas, it indicates that while there are likely more buyers, they also have a lot of options and thus are looking at more houses per buyer. Couple this with the increased trend toward major remodel projects, tear down/build projects (particularly over 3 million in total value), and the ultra luxury market is seeing buyers look at more options, which can mean a longer cycle, spread across both resale and build options.

Ivester Jackson | Christie's Int'l Real Estate
Ivester Jackson | Christie’s Int’l Real Estate

While the re-sale residential market over 2 million is generally running at or ahead of prior year trailing “sold” numbers (8 at Lake Norman and 9 in Charlotte over the past 6 months vs lower numbers in 2015), as well as very solid “pending” numbers (9 in Charlotte and 5 at Lake Norman over 2 million), the fact that some buyers are choosing the construction option is leaving fairly competitive conditions for sellers in the resale market.

There does not appear to be any type of “slowing” in the sense of number of buyers, in fact the opposite, they just have more options than they did coming out of the recession, when banks were not loaning money for construction projects.

Weekend Open Houses for May 20 – 22



Saturday May 21st

124 Ivy Hollow Lane, Mooresville

Open Saturday 1- 3 PM

124 ivy hollow
124 Ivy Hollow Lane


18612 Balmore Pines Lane, Cornelius

Saturday 2 – 4PM and Sunday 3 – 6 Pm


balmore pines
18612 Balmore Pines


Sunday: 1 – 4PM

9709 Northdowns Lane, Huntersville

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9709 Northdowns Lane


Sunday: 2 – 4 PM

3234 Bass Drive, Sherrills Ford, NC

3234 Bass Drive, Sherrills Ford NC 28673-7712 CMLS#:
3234 Bass Drive, Sherrills Ford NC

Spring Charlotte Real Estate Market Update

By: Matthew Paul Brown – Senior Managing Broker

Myers Park, Eastover, and Dilworth remain strong…

UptownSkyline Charlotte Real Estate Luxury Homes for Sale
Charlotte Uptown Skyline

So far, 2016 has been moving in a continued upward trend in real estate. My team, Reside | Charlotte focuses in the Myers Park, Eastover, Dilworth and surrounding areas. Overall, listing inventory continues to increase as pending homes sales have doubled in communities like Eastover. In Myers Park homes for sale have increased by 8 over the last 60 days and closings have tripled. Homes sales in these areas over 2 million have increased as well. All these statistics are good indicators that the luxury home market has dramatically improved and will continue to do so for the immediate future. Whatever your real estate needs and goals, we can assist with bespoke client services.

Charlotte Real Estate Homes for Sale Luxury Christie's International
Charlotte Residential Homes for Sale

Construction Spending

Residential construction continues to increase across our region. The value of construction increased 0.3% in March, but there were downward revisions to spending in January and February. However, residential construction was up 1.6% for the month and is up 7.8% year over year. With all this data, it doesn’t change my opinion that we reside in an incredible area of opportunity!



Relocation to Charlotte, North Carolina

One of the many challenges organizations face when expanding or relocating pertains to group moves of associates who have been offered transfers. At Reside | Charlotte Group we work with small to medium sized companies as well as many international companies since we are affiliated with Ivester Jackson | Christie’s International Real Estate. We offer turnkey solutions from group bus tours of the Charlotte area to cost savings initiatives that lessen the burden of relocation on both companies and associates. We offer a comprehensive overview of the region and often fly out to the relocating companies’ headquarters to meet with transferring employees. My team offers invaluable resources from connecting people with reduced car rentals, hotels, temporary housing, bespoke home previews, and introductions and referrals to medical, schools, child care facilities, hair stylist, Interior Design services and more.

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Consumer Confidence

This year, people continue to move in a cautiously optimistic manner as far as spending. In March 2016, the average home price was $280,665.00 compared to $261,867.00 in March 2015. My personal recommendation would be to continue to make wise purchases and sales throughout the remainder of the year. Charlotte, North Carolina is a vibrant and prospering city. We have so many factors that will help us in maintaining a local healthy economy. Personally, I like to support local business in our extraordinary city. Mixed economic data are keeping alive doubts about the expansion’s staying power. Looking under the hood, it is pretty clear that we continue to move forward with slow momentum especially in the residential market.

Unemployment in Charlotte

Charlotte area unemployment has decreased from 5.4% in 2015 to 5.1% in 2016. These are good signs for our city has we continue to expand and attract new talent and corporations. The United States unemployment rate dropped from 5.6% to 5.1% which continues to demonstrate a gradual increase in our overall economy. Job growth remains solid as the cycle matures and the pace is sufficient to continue to bring unemployment rate lower as well as wage growth appears to be increasing in many sectors.

Matthew Paul Brown, Reside Real Estate, Luxury, Charlotte
Matthew Paul Brown


Matthew Paul Brown is the Senior Managing Broker at Ivester Jackson | Christies International Real Estate, Charlotte, North Carolina’s premier luxury real estate firm.