The Surprising Reason to Take Photos of Your Home Year-Round

published Feb 16, 2024
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Spring memory, sherry blossom time. Big custom built luxury  home in the suburbs of Vancouver, Canada
Credit: romakoma/Shutterstock

If you ask my husband and me today if we ever plan to sell our house, my husband will shrug, and I will look at you as if you asked if I would sell my child. He would happily retire to life in a van, but I can’t imagine living anywhere that I don’t have enough counter space to roll out pizza dough. Whether we eventually downsize (never to a van, to be clear) or stay in this home forever, our dear friend and real estate broker has one essential piece of advice: Take photos of your home in all seasons, just in case. 

“Sometimes you’re able to list your house at the optimal time,” says Jon Sanford, real estate broker with Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Northwest Real Estate in Oregon. “But sometimes an unexpected family change or job offer comes up, and you find yourself needing to sell at a less-than-ideal time.” 

If I’m looking at a stressful move, the last thing I need is a potential buyer scrunching their nose as they look at my barren ornamental cherry tree. 

“Some buyers have a great sense of what a yard may look like with flowers in bloom,” says Sanford. “But a lot of buyers struggle with that vision.” Luckily, there’s an easy fix to this problem: “Having photos to share can really help showcase the labor you’ve put into your garden, trees at their peak, gorgeous sunsets, or stunning mountain views,” says Sanford. (These are all things that can be invisible on a rainy, overcast winter day.)

Hire a professional photographer if you can. 

If you know your way around an editing app, feel free to take them yourself, but hiring a pro if you’re able to is the best option for showing off those azaleas and fall colors year-round. When it comes to staging the inside of the home, using those photos throughout your interior decor can also be helpful. Don’t stop at putting the digital photos on your listing. 

Sanford recommends framing 8×10 prints of your views and placing them near their respective windows. The goal is to make it effortless for buyers to imagine living in your home when the weather is friendlier. If you plan to remove family photos anyway, this is a great idea. 

Credit: Meg Asby

Why I’m taking seasonal photos with zero plans to sell.

I truly never want to sell my house, but I’m going to follow Sanford’s advice anyway. We moved in five years ago, and already our backyard is drastically different than when we purchased it. Half the trees have been lost to increasingly intense winter weather and rising temperatures. Sun-loving plants that never could have survived our first summer now thrive in the warmer months of July and August. With climate change an increasingly dangerous reality, it doesn’t take long for these seasonal photos to become time capsules. If I don’t capture the view of my cherry blossoms now, it may be too late next spring.