Real Actual Listing Photos: What. The. Heck.

Real Actual Listing Photos: What. The. Heck.

I think we have a new challenger for most bizarre Seattle listing: 3235 Magnolia Boulevard W

This home actually made an appearance in a previous episode of Real Actual Listing Photos, but since that time the listing agent has cranked the dial up to eleven, so I decided it’s deserving of its own special dedicated Real Actual Listing Photos post.

It’s not just the photos on this one, though. The listing description is pretty amazing as well:

Buy today; live here very happily knowing you have higher aspirations. As your life evolves so can your home. Your home is a reflection of you, you can take a short cut and get superficially more or you can be happy knowing what your goals are and in the process of their fulfillment, you will find greater and more fulfilling happiness as your home is improved specifically to match your needs, tastes and view requirement. Living on the street of dreams is a rare opportunity at this price.

Sadly, the listing has since been updated with a description that is far less entertaining, but you can Google that first line and still see it on plenty of the less up-to-date listing sites to confirm that I’m not making it up.

It’s hard to one-up a description like that, but the photos manage to pull that off…

3235 Magnolia Blvd W Seattle, WA 98199This is cropped, but it’s plainly visible in the primary photo for the listing. GHOST JOGGER.
3235 Magnolia Blvd W Seattle, WA 98199This photo and the next two are all in sequence in the listing, resulting in a sort of surreal doll/statue escalation when you flip through the photos in order.
3235 Magnolia Blvd W Seattle, WA 98199Note that I did not crop this photo. It’s not even clear where this is or if it comes with the home.
3235 Magnolia Blvd W Seattle, WA 98199Um. What.
3235 Magnolia Blvd W Seattle, WA 98199This is the third distinct table setting in the listing photos. Because who wouldn’t want to sit down at a card table in their attic to enjoy a nice Coke bottle of water. Wait, what?

The world needs more surrealist listings.

  

About The Tim

Tim Ellis is the founder of Seattle Bubble. His background in engineering and computer / internet technology, a fondness of data-based analysis of problems, and an addiction to spreadsheets all influence his perspective on the Seattle-area real estate market.

37 comments:

  1. 1
    ChrisM says:

    Tim – have you researched prior listings by the same agent to see if they are equally, um, novel?

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  2. 2
    The Tim says:

    RE: ChrisM @ 1 – It’s difficult to get a sense of that since old listings that didn’t sell are removed from the internet entirely and those that did sell have their listing descriptions stripped away and only the primary photo displayed.

    He’s only got two other listings currently on the market (that I could find): 2925 26th Ave W and 3003 28th Ave W. Neither of those are nearly as unique, although they do both seem to suffer from having the saturation on some of the photos cranked up to eleven.

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  3. 3
    The Desponder says:

    This should be an exhibit at the Tate Modern… Right next to the video-loop exhibit of a guy cutting himself over and over… or maybe the agent decided not to include a listing photo of that room.

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  4. 4
    gdawg says:

    Totally bizarre and you’d expect Windermere would have some QA over their listings.

    Tim, out of curiosity, do you know if the MLS has “no blogging” selected?

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  5. 5
    redmondjp says:

    There has to be crystals, and dolphins too . . .

    And is that a real light fixture hanging in the attic, or a “ghost” one that somebody photoshopped in?

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  6. 6

    By gdawg @ 4:

    Tim, out of curiosity, do you know if the MLS has “no blogging” selected?

    Not sure what you’re asking. No blogging is the default choice on listings in the NWMLS.

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  7. 7
    Dweezil says:

    Breaking down that 3% commission, the seller is probably paying $400 per photo.
    That’s some high art there.

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  8. 8
    toad37 says:

    LMAO… that jogger one was is scary.

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  9. 9
    gdawg says:

    RE: Kary L. Krismer @ 6

    Is this not considered “blogging”?–fun for us to comment, but I’d be pissed if I were the seller or agent.

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  10. 10

    RE: gdawg @ 9 – The NWMLS rules only cover NWMLS agents. Tim is not an agent.

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  11. 11
    Pegasus says:

    RE: gdawg @ 9 – I would not be worried about the agents getting pissed. The agents should be embarrassed and correct their slovenly ways but that probably is not going to happen.

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  12. 12
    whattab says:

    You can see the book-reading fairy on the floor in some of the other photos.

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  13. 13
    ChrisM says:

    Of course, presumably the seller has seen the listing description & photos and is OK with them…

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  14. 14

    RE: ChrisM @ 12 – You’d be surprised how many seemingly don’t look. Others are hyper-vigilant, checking not only the pictures, but that the listing shows in searches in various brokerage sites, etc. Obviously if you’re a seller it’s better to the the latter.

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  15. 15
    Marc says:

    RE: ChrisM @ 1 – I can’t comment on this listing but, for what it’s worth, I live in Magnolia and this agent, Greg Shaw, is easily one of the busier agents in the area. I met him at an open house once several years before I became a broker and found him to be a pretty good guy. Unlike those old school agents who try to force you to sign in then follow you around mouth breathing and asking personal questions.

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  16. 16
    wreckingbull says:

    This reminds me of a house I toured in Ballard in 2005. The agent placed mannequins around the house, presumably to simulate the gracious living that would take place in the home when purchased. No, I am not making this up.

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  17. 17
    The Tim says:

    Hey let’s be clear. I’m not dissing the agent here. I think this is actually pretty brilliant and I mean it in a good way when I say that I find this listing to be quite entertaining. I wouldn’t be surprised if the bizarre photos and listing description were a part of an intentional marketing strategy to get the listing more attention, which if true, was in fact quite successful.

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  18. 18

    By wreckingbull @ 16:

    This reminds me of a house I toured in Ballard in 2005. The agent placed mannequins around the house, presumably to simulate the gracious living that would take place in the home when purchased. No, I am not making this up.

    I ran into that once. When I opened the door it scared the crap out of me!

    What was odd is it was a narrow townhouse, so adding a couple of mannequins you had to walk around just made the place appear even smaller.

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  19. 19
    No Name Guy says:

    That first photo…..ahhhh yes, the fun of digital cameras on a long exposure. Note the different “colors” of said jogger.

    And that doll picture….how bizarre.

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  20. 20
    The Desponder says:

    It must be intentional. If it were just this agent’s inherent quirkiness we would see more listings like this from the same guy. My bet is that this is brilliant/scary marketing. I have no intention of buying, but I want to go see that doll right now.

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  21. 21
    Suitably Skeptical says:

    Pocahontas there is like “bride of chucky” I’d flee…

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  22. 22
    The Desponder says:

    The Karmann Ghia parked on the lawn is also a nice touch.

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  23. 23
    phil says:

    “part of an intentional marketing strategy to get the listing more attention”

    Yep. They don’t want you to notice the driveway along one side of the house and across the back of the yard, which is access to another house. Plus the other house permanently blocking your view to the SW.

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  24. 24
    ARDELL says:

    RE: Kary L. Krismer @ 10

    The Rule covers “members” not “agents” and the members are the Brokerages not the agents and he works for a Brokerage. He should not be exempt anymore than the Sweet Digs Freelance Writers were. None of them were agents, and yet Sweet Digs was fined. How is this different? Loved those girls. They were very passionate about housing and were shut down because they were paid by Redfin. None of them were agents. Very nice group of ladies.

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  25. 25
    The Tim says:

    By ARDELL @ 24:

    How is this different?

    Were those ladies writing in their own personal time, or were they being paid by Redfin to write about listings?

    Were the posts they were writing being published on their own personal blogs, or were they being published on Redfin’s official corporate blogs?

    Yes, it is quite difficult to tell the difference…

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  26. 26
    uwp says:

    Reading Ardell’s comment, I kept thinking the ladies she was talking about were the dolls in the photo. Very confusing…

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  27. 27
    Scotsman says:

    I’ll take the Karmann Ghia and the American Girl doll. You can have the house.

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  28. 28
    Sweet Pea says:

    By wreckingbull @ 16:

    This reminds me of a house I toured in Ballard in 2005. The agent placed mannequins around the house, presumably to simulate the gracious living that would take place in the home when purchased. No, I am not making this up.

    Oh boy. I laughed out loud at this. I imagine that could be creepy as hell.

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  29. 29
    gdawg says:

    RE: The Tim @ 25

    Not a lawyer and not familiar enough with MLS rules to know for sure, but even if this site can technically blog about listings, you should at least be mindful of the potential impact to the sellers and agents.

    A friend recently sold a house and his agent thought that the “no blogging” in the listing would prevent Redfin from even posting their “notes”–buyers no doubt love those, but if you get a loose cannon “agent” making opinion-based comments, that could obviously really hurt the listing. Apparently that’s not the case and Redfin can post notes regardless of what’s selected in the listing, but they’re certainly not making friends with negatively impacted agents and sellers. The comments on my friends house were positive, so may have helped, but I’ve seen plenty that were total opinion and quite negative.

    Imagine you were selling your house and a blog like this or Redin posted about it and said “lots kitten kickers nearby and schools are $hit”–might be true, but The Tim wouldn’t be happy about it.

    So, sure, you might be able to technically blog about specific listings, do the “guess the price” and invite snarky comments from the bitter and the jealous, but just understand there are real people who could be negatively impacted.

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  30. 30
    Tom says:

    The jogger is an artifact of the HDR effect – multiple images taken at different exposures are combined to get that ‘pop’ in color and light when combined. Done right, the pictures can look quite nice.

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  31. 31
    John says:

    RE: gdawg @ 29 – Next, you are gonna blame bubble blogs for the housing crash.

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  32. 32
    kn says:

    “So, sure, you might be able to technically blog about specific listings, do the “guess the price” and invite snarky comments from the bitter and the jealous, but just understand there are real people who could be negatively impacted. ”

    Actually, my $.02, I personally think the listing with it’s ‘creative marketing’ negatively impacts itself all on it’s own and comments here or a blog listed won’t make any difference. Any reasonably intelligent prospective buyer should reel in horror at what appears to be a photoshop job on these photos. The content of the house, not going to comment on that since I’m not a buyer. But what ‘appears’ to be photographic modification alone detracts from the listing and the agent (as one person put here is a ‘nice guy’ which we don’t doubt) would in his bests interest address. It’s be nice if there were state or federal laws against this kind of thing. Leave the photo original….please.

    Common sense should prevail if you’re presenting a person’s property and trying to win them a sale and not have it turn into a slow mover.

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  33. 33
    Eden says:

    These pictures made my day! So funny.

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  34. 34
    The Tim says:

    By gdawg @ 29:

    Imagine you were selling your house and a blog like this or Redin posted about it and said “lots kitten kickers nearby and schools are $hit”–might be true, but The Tim wouldn’t be happy about it.

    Imagine you were selling [insert any product here] and a blog or some internet review site posted about it and said [insert any negative statement here]. Might be true, but the gdawg wouldn’t be happy about it.

    As it turns out, people are free to make whatever comments they want about things. I wonder if you have the same issue with Consumer Reports. Those nasty reviewers always pointing out negative things about products that people worked so hard to design and bring to market. Or Amazon reviews.

    Why exactly should homes be some sort of special exempt type of product that it’s not okay to make comments about online when it’s being offered for sale?

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  35. 35
    Dirty Renter says:

    By gdawg @ 29:

    RE: The Tim @ 25

    … do the “guess the price” and invite snarky comments from the bitter and the jealous and the dirty renters

    fixed it

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  36. 36
    lne says:

    When a real estate agent just isn’t good enough…try a surrealistate agent. Now there’s new twist on an old profession. Maybe a new source of ad revenue for this site!

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  37. 37
    nobody you know says:

    Not sure where this should go but here’s a real actual listing photo of your future tenant. No shirt, no shoes, rolling a joint in this listing from Dunkirk, NY.

    Listing: http://www.trulia.com/property/photos/3030973849-141-King-St-Dunkirk-NY-14048#item-6

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