Why photos are key to succeeding in Real Estate in the Middle East

Real estate
Jul 16, 2019 by Monica Linzmeier
12 MIN

Pictured Above: Palm Jumeirah - Artificial Archipelagos, Dubai, the United Arab Emirates as seen from space

The Middle East is the fastest-growing real estate market in the world today. This growth is spurred on by the availability of land, growing infrastructure, and recent changes allowing foreigners to own real estate. 

“Prior to the turn of the new millennium, the GCC states generally prohibited foreign ownership of real estate within their borders. However, within the last 10 years, the tide has slowly started to turn...” 

Corporate Counsel Business Journal

Like any real estate market, one of the most important things you can do for business in the Middle East is to invest in quality real estate photography. We’re going through the ‘why’ here: 

  • Don’t lose out on potential buyers with high-quality photos

  • Show off the wow factor with drone imagery

  • Attract international clients thanks to VR

  • Set yourself apart with video

Don’t lose out on potential buyers thanks to High-Quality Photography 

Listings with professional photos receive 118% more online views and listings with professional photographs sell 32% faster

So why invest in real estate photography? At the end of the day, it is a numbers game. Studies have shown that properties listed with professional photography can receive 118% more online visits and that they even close 32% faster than photos with poor quality photos. Promoting luxury real estate with amateur photos is a quick way to lose potential leads. This might be because, according to the Wall Street Journal, for each listing they look at, potential buyers spend about 60% looking through the photos, and only 20% on the listing description. 

What’s more, online listings without photos can be completely overlooked: "A whopping 84% of home buyers and sellers surveyed by the real estate website Trulia said they wouldn't even consider buying a property if its listing didn't have a photograph."  

What does this show us? Professional photography is essential to any agent in the Middle East who is trying to reach the right client.  

Let’s take a look at Edwards & Tower’s spread in the July/August edition of Prestige magazine.

Edwards and Towers

© Prestige Magazine, July August 2019

These photos aren’t worth just a thousand words, they are priceless when it comes to showcasing your listings. 

With just five photos, this listing has shown potential buyers that the property is modern, stylish, and moreover, has an incredible view! Before even arriving at the property, clients have started imagining themselves on the deck, taking in the view. This property is going to make it on the must-visit list of any potential buyers, and when properties have more viewings, they have more offers! 

Additionally, studies have shown that homes with high-quality photos receive 47% higher asking price per square foot. So the numbers just add up. 

Another thing a photo can do that a listing can’t is to really capture the essence of a home, putting it’s best features in the best light, like this photoshoot by the pool by Meero.

Hotel Photography Pool

© Meero 

This is just one of the gorgeous images produced through Meero’s innovative solution. As the leading experts in real estate photography with more than 58K collaborating photographers around the world, we are able to organize shoots anywhere at the click of a button. 

Available in more than 100 countries with world-class editing software, your final photos are sure to be consistent everywhere, every time.

The Wow Factor: Drone and aerial photography 

83% of people prefer to work with realtors that use drone photography

Everyone is looking for a “wow factor” in the homes they are looking at, but imagine if you could actually bring the wow-factor through to your listing presentation. The aerial images shot by Meero's collaborators have the unique capability of truly showing a home in all of its splendor, in a way that is hard to capture with standard photography. When you have a property in an incredible neighborhood, show it off!

Betterhomes Drone Photo

© Better Homes Magazine

Check out this beautiful layout from BetterHomes Magazine from August 2018. The drone image is so impressive that they’ve dedicated an entire spread to the photo. Imagine harnessing that kind of wow-factor for your listing: a study conducted by the MLS found that homes with aerial images sold 68% faster than homes with standard images. Is that really any surprise? Perhaps that is why a recent study showed that 83% of people prefer to work with realtors that use drone photography.

 

© Meero 

As you can see in this video shot by Meero, a drone video shows off the best parts of a listing has to offer and has the added benefit of being able to show off the surrounding area, so a client knows what to expect. Our turnkey, end-to-end service makes it effort-free to book incredible aerial photography that can make the difference for your Real Estate Agency. 

Attract international clients with virtual reality 

77% of people surveyed said that they would choose to take a virtual reality tour before visiting a house or apartment in person


Any realtor that has been in the business a while knows the classic client complaint: “It doesn’t look like the pictures.” One of the fastest-growing technics that helps brokers avoid this sentence is virtual reality, another way Meero can help you seal the deal. 

Meero Virtual Reality

© Meero 

A Coldwell Banker survey revealed that 77% of people surveyed said that they would choose to take a virtual reality tour before visiting a house or apartment in person. This is a surefire way to impress your clients and really show off the properties to the fullest, not to mention it makes your listings that much more professional.  

What’s more, if your potential buyers are abroad, this is an absolutely necessary step to reassuring your clients of the property they’ll be investing in. 

 

real estate photographer

 

That’s why Meero produces photos, videos and VR content for all types of shoots, with a top-notch delivery model to make sure your project succeeds at home and abroad! 

The Middle East is a booming market for foreign investment because while traditionally foreigners could not purchase properties in many areas of the Middle East, that is slowly changing. Legislation changed to allow foreigners to purchase property under certain restrictions in Saudi Arabia in 2000, Bahrain in 2003, Turkey in 2012, Oman in 2017 and Abu Dhabi changed their real estate law as recently as April of this year! 

This has lead to an ever-increasing foreign national interest in investing in the Middle East. “The CEO of Abu Dhabi’s biggest developer Aldar Properties, Talal Al Dhiyebi, predicts sales will increase by at least 40% this year over last year.”

An easy way to guarantee you aren't missing out on potential investors is to give them the peace of mind that comes with virtual reality tours. With Virtual Reality tours, you are taking the guesswork out of purchasing a home from abroad.  To see it in action, click on the photos to test virtual reality in action.

 

© Meero 

As you can see for yourself, with virtual reality, potential clients will be immersed in your property, literally! They can explore each room of the house or condo, one by one, and really get the feel of the size, layout, and lighting. With the modern technology used by Meero, virtual reality is quicker and easier than ever before. 

Set yourself apart with Video

73% of homeowners say that they are more likely to list with a real estate agent who uses video to market their home, however, only 9% of agents create listing videos.

If you are really looking to stand out from other agencies in the Middle East, the last thing that is sure to increase listing views and inquiries is video.  According to the National Association of Realtors, while only 9% of realtors publish listing videos, an incredible 73% of homeowners would prefer to list with an agent who uses video to market their home.

What this means is that there is a large demand for real estate agents who offer these services, and no wonder, since one Australian agency found that they had a 403% increase in inquiries when they added a featured video to their property listings. 

Videos, like Virtual Reality, do an incredible job showing off a property to its full potential, all while giving a more complete image to potential buyers. Take a look at this Meero video that combines high-quality drone images with professional video to present this striking luxury home in all its splendor. Thanks to the world’s largest creative community, you could have a similar professional video shot by the Meero team in days, not weeks.

© Meero

Meero: a simple solution

In the past, getting quality visuals was a long and painstaking process of tracking, negotiating, training and following up with photographers. But today there is a turn-key solution to getting consistent, quality imagery, even in large quantities!  With vetted photographers always available and world-class editing AI, Meero is able to delivery beautiful real estate photography in just 24 hours. 

You won’t have to lift a finger in order to get stunning aerial photography or beautiful photos to show your listings in their best light. Register today and find out how Meero can help you transform your listings. 

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