The purpose of real estate photography is to sell houses. Realtors are looking for unique styles that will catch the eye of prospects in a sea of those who are competing for real estate photography. But great real estate photography requires more than a sharp eye.

Prospective home buyers often get their first impression of a property in its listing photos. Therefore, the quality of your real estate photography can be a crucial factor when selling a property. For many sellers, this means hiring a professional photographer. However, if you are confident in your photography skills, taking images for real estate listings on your own is a realistic choice.

This guide tells you how to take quality photos yourself.

Real Estate Photography – A Complete Guide

High-quality photos of a real estate property are essential when selling your home. The first thing that buyers see when they look at a sales listing is the photos. Bad photos – whether bad in quality or composition – will immediately turn off many buyers. You likely want as many buyers as possible to see your home in person to increase the chances of a great offer, so you definitely do not want to turn potential buyers off with bad photos.

1. Choose the Right Gear

To produce high-quality pictures, you need quality camera gear. Using a standalone camera instead of a smartphone when photographing your home for the listing will give you a professional quality that even the best cell phone camera cannot achieve.

Your camera’s exposure (how good a picture you will get) is affected by three things, the aperture (or size of the opening for the lens), shutter speed (length of time for the opening) and ISO (sensitivity to light). The shutter speed depends on the lighting conditions but when shooting with a slower shutter speed, we highly recommend using a tripod to ensure your image looks sharp and crisp.

Choosing the right lens is also an important variable to consider. To photograph an entire room, select a wide-angle lens. Even so, you may not be able to fit a large space into a single image. In that case, compose shots that emphasize the room’s best elements, such as how natural light falls into the room, how spacious it is, or an unusual feature that might catch the viewers’ eye.

2. Set the Scene

Before taking even one picture, start with cleaning and tidying up the room. You may have to move or remove furniture to make the room appear more spacious. It is also a good idea to remove personal decorative items or knickknacks that will make the room look cluttered. Since most people are looking for large, spacious rooms, it is best to shoot from hip height, since it makes a space appear larger.

3. Photograph Your House Interiors

Photographing the interior of your house is one of the most important parts of the home selling process. As such, you will want to make sure that you get everything right as you take pictures of the inside of your home. In general, you’ll want to consider the following tips when photographing house interiors:

Consider Angle

When you photograph rooms in your home, you want to do so in a way that shows off the natural highlights of a room and its full size. In order to do so, it is best that you take your photographs from an angle. This will give you a photo with more depth than if you just stand in the doorway and fire away.

Include the Floor

Interior photographs without floors are like portraits without necks. They look weird and somehow unnatural, so make sure you include your room’s floor when you get your shot.

Shoot At All Times of the Day

If your room has windows, be sure to shoot at various times of the day so that you can capture your room at various levels of natural light. You may find that lighting later in the day shows off more of your room, or it could be just the opposite.

4. Pay Attention to the Light

One of the most critical factors for good real estate photos is lighting. Without the proper light, even the most beautiful shot can look dull and lifeless. Ideally, take your pictures during the day and in sunny weather. Open all curtains and check the natural light.

For exterior real estate photography, you want to shoot your photograph when the sun is directly in front of your house. This will generally be the time when the sunlight outside is the brightest and when you can get a shot with the finest contrast.

In general, you want to avoid shots where the outside of the house looks brighter than the inside. This makes a house’s interior look worse by comparison, so any shots with blinding windows are a no-no.

5. Pay Special Attention to Editing

Image editing is an integral part of interior photography. Some photos have issues with exposure; others suffer from harsh shadows, lack of light, etc. If you take images without a tripod and just learning how to build a composition, you may need to perform cropping. You can correct colors, accentuate details, and do all possible to give your images a catchy look. Sometimes, it is necessary to alter saturation and hue settings for a more natural result.

Find the Right Agent

First impressions still matter. Especially in today’s competitive market where buyers often find their dream homes online first before visiting them in person, this is an invaluable service because not only will they spend less time searching on listings with unprofessional pictures, but all of your properties are more likely to get viewed if they have consistent high-quality images across all mediums. Pictures are a chance for your home to make a great first impression, so it is important to make the most of that opportunity.

Windermere’s community of real estate professionals is our greatest asset. We have experts in all areas of real estate, from your typical starter home to condos, luxury properties, and new construction. While residential real estate is the mainstay of our business, Windermere also has offices and associates who specialize in property management, commercial real estate, and relocation services. To further facilitate the home buying process, Windermere has affiliated partners in certain regions to provide mortgage, title, and escrow services.

Call us today with any questions or concerns. Our professional Real Estate Agents will help you through this exciting process. (951) 369-8002