April 15, 2010

What’s new at GreenApple?

As they say, time flies when you’re having fun! I can’t believe how long it’s been since my last post. Something I will try not to let happen again!

However, it’s not because we’ve been slacking off . . . quite the opposite. Our Calgary Home Staging and Photography business is really growing here at GreenApple with an expanding client list, expanding services, and expanding office help (and thank goodness for that!).Calgary Home Staging and Interior Photography, spa bathroom

So what have we been up to? One thing I really like about running my own business is that it is never a dull moment, or overly repetitive. We’ve helped many home owners and Real Estate Agents with Staging, Pre-Market Consultations, Pre-Photo Stylings — and, of course, Interior Photography!

One interesting project in the last few weeks was the styling and photography I did for Vicon Homes, a local craftsman Home Builder. Check out their latest home building project and our photos here!

Another fun job was providing a Pre-Market Consultation to some Calgary home owners at the request of their Agent. I gave them the advice they were looking for to effectively prepare their home for sale. The best part of it was going back a few weeks later and discovering they actually implemented nearly everything I suggested — and it looked great!

They even purchased some items for styling (which they happily get to take to their new home). I then used those items, and other things I found around their home, to add the “finishing touches” before our photo shoot. Take a look at our awesome home transformation and mini-staging results.

Thanks for reading, and I’ll be back soon again.

March 21, 2010

The Difference great Real Estate Photography makes in a Home Sale!

A few weeks ago, I had the privilege of photographing a beautiful home in SW Calgary. The Realtor had asked me to provide a pre-market staging consultation, so I got a preview of the listing.

I gave a few styling tips and furniture arrangment ideas as the home owner and I travelled from room to room, but what was mostly on my mind was that I couldn’t wait to come back with my photography equipment! Everything about the home — from the decor and artwork to the cleanliness, organization and maintenance — just had “Your search is over” written all over it!

As I had expected, the home has already sold . . . but I was doubly pleased to learn that GreenApple’s real estate photography and slideshow played an integral part in the sale — as was reported to me by the Realtors, it helped clinch the deal!

Like most people, I take great pride and pleasure in a job well done. And knowing that what I do has made a real difference helping these home owners to move on to their next chapter more quickly . . . it’s the icing on the cake!

To see the difference our photography makes, view our portfolio!

March 14, 2010

Looking for More Information on Home Staging and Home Selling in Calgary?

Did you know that I write for the Calgary Home Staging Blog, as well as maintaining a blog here on GreenApple Staging & Images?  Because homes and real estate have always been a passion of mine, I keep informed on many related topics . . . and then share what I learn with all of you!

If it has been awhile since you’ve been active in Calgary’s real estate market, things have definitely changed . . . and I’m not just talking about price fluctuations.

Technology has dramatically affected the buying end of the home selling equation — the internet has given buyers more control in searching for properties independently, which in turn means they are far more educated about what is on the market. They don’t need to rely on an agent to shortlist homes for them, and they can easily view hundreds of properties in one sitting at their own computer.

Wondering how your home stacks up against all the others out there? Interested in learning how to get the most out of your single largest asset?

Read about these questions and more on the Calgary Home Staging Blog. Find out how great photography and professional home staging can help you sell your home more quickly . . . and for more money.

March 9, 2010

Home Staging Helps SW Calgary Home Sell in 2 Days!

GreenApple Staging & Images recently had the privilege of staging this 92 year old home near downtown Calgary. The task had its challenges . . . odd paint colours, an unusual kitchen, and a rear addition. My plan of attack? Neutralize the living room with black and white, and go with the rest of it!

Both us and the Realtors were pleased with the results, but the real test would be how a potential home buyer votes via an offer!

We were all thrilled that they loved it and the house sold in the first two days on the market.

If you are thinking of selling your home, give us a call. Our professional real estate photography and home staging services have a proven track record in helping Calgary homes sell.

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , , , , — admin @ 6:47 pm

What’s in GreenApple’s Camera Bag?

I often get asked what kind of equipment I use for Real Estate Photography, and what to recommend to others. Here’s what I have in my portable studio kit:

  • Pelican Case 1520
  • Canon 50D with the Canon 10-22mm lens
  • Canon 30-85mm lens
  • Canon 580exII external flash for onboard use
  • Several diffuser heads
  • Nikon 80DX speedlight (flash) for remote lighting
  • Nikon 28DX speedlight
  • Nikon 24 DX speedlight x2
  • 2 radio transmitters & optical trigger
  • 6 radio receivers
  • Lens cleaning supplies
  • Spare battery & charger
  • Spare rechargeable batteries
  • Spare compact flash & SD cards
  • 3 lightweight tripods
  • 1 camera tripod
  • 1 Nikon light stand and umbrella
  • Canon G11 for exteriors
  • Customized Telescopic pole

Believe it or not, I haul this to every home that I photograph, and often make use of all of it! That’s over $7000 worth of equipment—but of course, we think the expertise to use it is invaluable ;-).

When I’m done with all that, it’s time to upload about 1.5 GB worth of photos onto my computer. Here is what is in my post-processing kit:

  • Photoshop Lightroom
  • Photoshop
  • PT Lens
  • Photomatix
  • Slideshow Pro
  • Several third party add-ins for Lightroom
  • Yousendit Pro Account
  • 2x 1TB external hard drives

As you’ve probably guessed, I love to talk photography, cameras, equipment and process with anyone who is interested. If you have any questions, feel free to ask away.

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , , — admin @ 2:59 pm
February 17, 2010

Tips for Choosing a Calgary Realtor for Listing your Home

Spring has sprung in Calgary, and I don’t just mean the milder weather we’ve been enjoying. The Calgary real estate market seems to be off to a healthy start for 2010.

At GreenApple Staging & Images, we’ve been busy giving pre-market consultations to home sellers looking to maximize their home’s potential. We’ve also been doing tons of MLS photography shoots as our regular clients seem to be listing up a storm. And, we’ve also done a lot of home staging and furnishing of properties for sale that would otherwise have sat vacant.

The reward of all our effort? Homes are selling! We’re so excited to be part of our busy Calgary Realtor teams that are making a difference to many home owners in selling their properties.

Are you thinking of listing your home sale, but don’t know who to call? How do you go about choosing a Real Estate Agent to list your home with? With some 5000 Realtors in Calgary, this is not an easy task! Here are a few of our best tips:

  1. Insight – Pricing a home is part art and part science. All Agents have access to current statistics, but applying it appropriately to any given property is a little trickier. You want an Agent who will help price your home accurately. Go too high, and buyers lose interest. Price too low . . . well, no one wants to leave money on the table, but you could end up with multiple offers to help correct that.
  2. Investment – The real estate game has changed dramatically in Calgary. Houses no longer sell themselves, just because you put the sign on the lawn. With over 90% of home buyers now starting their home search online, you need an Agent that understands the importance of great photography and properly preparing a home for sale. It has to be visually appealing for today’s home buyers! Ask about an Agent’s value-added services. Better yet . . . check out the properties they currently have listed to see for yourself. Can you see the rooms in the photos? Do you like what you see?
  3. Impact – When an offer comes in, you need a skilled negotiator! What might look like a straight forward sale can get complicated very quickly. It’s not just about the dollar value — terms, conditions, home inspections, closing issues — as a Home Seller you need someone on your side to navigate these treacherous waters and help save you costly mistakes!

Of course, we whole-heartedly recommend the Agents that we work with! Looking for someone who is a good fit for you? Just ask us and we’ll pass on a qualified referral.

January 25, 2010

GreenApple Staging & Images makes a Great Debut at the Calgary Real Estate Tradeshow

Wednesday, January 20th was the 6th annual Calgary Real Estate Board Conference and Tradeshow. GreenApple Staging & Images was proud to be one of 102 exhibitors contributing to the theme, “A Brave New World”.

The GreenApple team had a great time mingling with both the attendees and other exhibitors. We had tons of traffic at our booth and got a chance to meet many hardworking and forward thinking Realtors.

There is definitely an increased interest in Home Staging, professional Real estate Photography, and pre-market Consultations as part of an individual Realtor’s marketing plan — all part of the new economy. I believe these strategies are not just trends. They are definitely here to stay as our consumer oriented society continues to respond to visual appeal.

We staged our booth with our brand colors — black, white and apple green, of course — and we were happily surprised that GreenApple was declared one of the top 3 Staging Exhibitors! We were all tied with an Honorable Mention for booth design and service.

We also held a draw and gave away a Pre-Market Consultation package and an MLS Photography Package. When I called the winners, they were thrilled and are eager to apply these services to their next listing. 

It’ll be all work and no play for awhile, as the “Spring” real estate season seems well underway in Calgary already. But that is exactly what we bargained for!

Thanks to everyone who visited us at the event, and all others who supported us behind the scenes!

January 3, 2010

GreenApple is going to CREB Forecast 2010. Are you?

January 20, 2010 marks the 6th annual Conference and Tradeshow for the Calgary Real Estate Board. This year’s focus is on the “brand new economy, brand new consumer, brand new technology” for today’s real estate market.

GreenApple is proud and excited to part of the changing face of real estate! Our business focus of home staging and professional photography is all about helping home owners more effectively market their property to today’s consumer. And not only do we follow Calgary’s real estate market and trends, we are also part of national and international networks that allow us to see how larger influences will affect us locally.

If you are a Real Estate Professional, drop by and visit us at the show! Enter our draws for complimentary services, including free pre-market consultations and full real estate/MLS photography packages. Multiple winners will be announced following the show, just in time for the busy Spring market.

We look forward to seeing you at the Telus Convention Centre on January 20th!

Filed under: Home Selling,What's New — Tags: , , , — admin @ 1:34 pm
November 22, 2009

We’ve done a little Re-Designing of our own!

They say form follows function.

As true as this is in our homes, it also applies to our virtual home! GreenApple’s business has grown and become more refined. So . . . changes to our website were needed in order to keep up with our most popular services.

Our photography has captured a lot of interest, setting new standards in Calgary’s world of Real Estate Photography. We hope you enjoy our bigger and better photographic images, and our expanded Portfolio Galleries.

Visitors to our site can now also view the multimedia slideshows that we create as part of every real estate photography package that we do. We have a new Client Gallery section that tracks the active and sold listings for each Realtor and property that we have recently worked with.

Feel free to take your time browsing samples of both our photography and staging in these new gallery pages!

And we’re blogging!

Check back often for tips, advice and discussion on:

  • home selling
  • home improvement
  • home maintenance
  • photography for fun
  • green living
  • and other related topics

Every once in awhile, we’ll break form and chat about whatever else is happening out there. Afterall, these things are important and interesting, too.

No one likes a one-sided conversation, so we look forward to your comments and participation. Let us know what you think, or what your questions are.

Welcome to GreenApple’s newest version of our website, and thank you for visiting.

Filed under: What's New — Tags: , — admin @ 3:10 pm