Do You Want the Family Pet on a Listing Photo?

Dog in the Bedroom

Dog in the Bedroom

One of the most common issues I am confronted with is the question about including images with family pets. I personally believe that listing photos for the MLS should not contain any pets no matter how cute they may be. The overall goal of  a shoot should be the absolute best presentation of the home for sale. I know that there are photographers, agents and homeowners who think that the family dog would provide some personal touch to the image, but is this really what we want? Many potential home buyers are solely interested in the property and the thought of a large dog on the kitchen- or bedroom floor does not sit well. Even though I recommend to remove all pets for the shoot on my “Home Preparation Guide” on this website, very often I deal with an elderly seller who isn’t able to take the cat or dog out and so I have no choice but to work around our furry companions. Most of the time it will not create a major problem since there is always the possibility to move to a different room and shoot that first, but once in a while man’s best friend just doesn’t want to budge at all. What do you do in this case? Well, in that case I just take the picture and remove the friendly creature in Photoshop. Usually I keep a version with the pet and give it as a present to the homeowner who is almost always most appreciative. All in all, I recommend to simply photograph the house with as few personal items as possible and no pets in order to present a professional looking set of listing photos. It usually pays off.

Category: Photo Notes
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299 Responses
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