By Chanita Teitz


The September-October issue of Realtor magazine, the trade publication for real estate brokers and agents, featured an article about legal implications of real estate photographs. Professional photos are copyrighted to the photographer who owns them and transfers the rights to those photos to the broker or agent to use for specific marketing purposes. The agent or broker cannot use them for any other personal use, nor can anyone else use them or post them on social media. Anyone who wishes to use these pictures needs to get permission from the photographer. As a seller, make sure your agent is not using pictures that belong to someone else. If your house was listed with an agent who took pictures and the listing expired and you signed with another agent, the original pictures cannot be used without permission.

In every new listing situation, the listing agent should arrange for professional photos to be taken to enhance your home and show its best qualities. A good photographer is critical in capturing the best features of your house. Today most buyers want to “window shop” first on social media and Zillow, Trulia,, and other consumer real estate platforms to see what the house looks like before they go see it in person.

  • Preparing for a photo shoot is a perfect time to “stage” your home. Get rid of clutter. Clear your counters and even rearrange the furniture to make the rooms look spacious. Remove personal photos and mementos. You want the house to look inviting but neutral.
  • Consider investing a small amount of money to spruce things up a bit. If your house needs painting, do it now. Get new towels, a new shower curtain, or new throw pillows for your living room. A vase of fresh flowers on a beautifully set dining room table is inviting.
  • Good lighting is also essential, and opening the shades to let in some sunlight can brighten and warm up your pictures. Your realtor will advise you on what needs to be done and a good photographer will take the time to set up each room to bring out its best qualities.
  • One more thing: don’t forget the front of your house. Make sure the sidewalk is shoveled and your front door is clean or freshly painted.

Your house should sparkle and great pictures will help attract buyers!

Upcoming Events

5K Walk/Run in memory of Michael Simanowitz. Sunday, October 27 starting at 8:30 a.m. in Flushing Meadows Park. Hosted by YCQ and Avigdor’s Helping Hand. At 9:40 a.m. there will be youth sprints and at 10 a.m. the 5K will begin. To register call 917-568-8809, or visit here.

Chanita Teitz is a real-estate broker at Astor Brokerage in Kew Gardens Hills, serving the entire Queens vicinity. For all your real-estate needs, call her at 718-263-4500 or e-mail


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