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It was cold outside, and I was sitting on a bench, warm inside the Lied Center, awaiting a show. I got there early and was desperately trying to stay awake as I watched the people walk by. So, to amuse myself, I decided to stop looking at people and look at their shoes. I decided if their shoes intrigued me, I would look up and see what went with the shoes. I would say I looked up about 30 percent of the time.

To me, it sounds like a low-tech version of swiping right or left on a cell phone. If you don’t like the picture, swipe and go to the next one. It’s about making a quick judgment and moving on.

What did I miss by not looking up 70 percent of the time? Did I miss a fabulous outfit? (The sequined shoes that matched the rhinestone jacket did not disappoint!) Did I miss someone I know? Did I miss what the shoes said about the wearer?

And what does this have to do with home shopping? I think everything. When you’re looking at photos online, home buyers and lookers are making judgments. Some pictures are great. Even too great; once you get into the house, the photos are better than the house. Some pictures are honestly, lousily blurry, with bad angles, and why do we really want to see the toilet and hot water heater? Unless it’s one of those really great Japanese toilets, and if you’ve been to Japan you know exactly what I’m talking about. (I have yet to run into one in Lincoln.) Some photos have terrible lighting; some are Photoshopped.

And some photos have so much stuff in the rooms; the photo is really of things, not the space.

The judgments people make on these photos may determine whether a buyer chooses to see a home. Bad photos? Swipe. And off to the next house. My advice to buyers: You have to get in the house to see it for yourself and decide if it’s right for you.

Buying or selling? We’d love to help. Contact us at or 402-261-0470.

Katie Pocras, MBA, Associate Broker

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