Legislation

Are Listing Photos an Invasion of Privacy?

It’s standard to include photos along with a listing so that agents and buyers can get a good idea of what a house looks like before seeing it in person. Not every agent or seller includes photos, but it’s never problematic to put them up.

That is, until the house sells. The photos usually stay up. One buyer that we’ll call “Deborah” asked her agent to remove the photos after the sale. The agent refused, saying agents like to see them for the purposes of comparison. There are two potential issues here:

1) The one which applies in Deborah’s case, that now these are simply photos of her home, which is no longer listed. Anyone can view images of the interior of her home, which she believe is an invasion of her privacy, or worse, a security risk.
2) There’s a possibility that the interior could have changed drastically after the purchase, in which case the photos aren’t at all useful for comparisons. There’s no way of knowing.

Agents already have the ability to remove photos after a sale, but as demonstrated here, the agents hold all the cards in that decision. The solution Deborah proposed is an opt-out list, allowing buyers to state whether or not they want listing photos to remain after the sale.

So, what about you — should photos stay? Should they be removed? Do you like Deborah’s opt-out solution? Maybe you have a different solution? Tell us what you think!

More: https://magazine.realtor/daily-news/2018/08/20/should-listing-photos-be-removed-after-the-sale

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