10 Tips for taking great photos of your next listing to not look like a rookie

I take my own pictures and encourage any Realtor that has interest in it to do so as well.  But I think it takes some practice and some education to really do a good enough job as a professional agent.  I saw it as an early way to save money but after some practice and taking a couple of lessons, figured out that I could take nearly as good a picture as a professional at no charge.  And I enjoyed the process so it was a win-win for me.  When I started taking my own pictures I made alot of mistakes and was always grateful when someone pointed out a bad picture or made suggestions and over time I have learned to take great pictures myself for my own listings.  Yes they could be edited more or photoshopped to be perfect, but I have always thought really great pictures of the actual space do alot more then making a house look different then it actually will appear on tour.  So today I have 10 suggestions for your pictures to make you stand out from the remedial’s.

  1.  Go slow – take the time to find the right angles and really look at each room to be sure you are conveying it as well as possible through a single photo.
  2. Think about the buyer – take into consideration that every possible buyer may see this so remove any offensive or potential turn off for the home
  3. Toilet Lids down – i shouldn’t have to say this one but some people just don’t think
  4. Lighting – natural light is best but always always always bring in lighting.  I use a couple of lamps to make a dark room brighter for the simple reason of being able to see the room.  Some rooms are best dark when you live in them but for listing pictures they have to be bright.
  5. Animals – litter boxes, scratch things, toys or the actual animal should never be in a picture.  people have allergies and find it offensive sometimes but if the home is kept clean they may see past it.  a picture with the family cat in it is just dumb.
  6. Declutter – many home owners don’t understand what we mean by decluttering a home before we take pictures.  so as the photographer you may have to move stuff around including furniture, appliances and clothing.  do it and explain to them the ultimate goal.  they typically appreciate the effort
  7. Doorways are your best friend – i see alot of pictures from teh corner of a room but if you can stand in the doorway just outside of the room you may have a better chance of a nice photo.  step back a step and have a look.
  8. Eye level – many of us use a tri-pod and accidentally put it up too high or too low but you should never have to reach up or down to take a picture.  hold the camera at eye level so people will get the real vantage point.
  9. Dont be lazy – take your time and think about each room and picture.  i find it helpful to stand in a room and think about the subject of that room.  a quick photo zoomed in on a sink may not do a room justice but taking several shots at different angles will give you some great options.  dont rush and work for those awesome pictures.
  10. Have fun – there are alot of great resources out there to help you not only take better pictures but equipment suggestions as well.  spending a little time learning can be fun and rewarding and you will surely do a great job from there.

Take those pictures and take them well is how I always feel when listing a home.  But you may choose to hire a photographer and that is perfectly fine.  I am of the school that if you are not going to do a great job of something, let someone else do it and this is a perfect part of selling real estate that it comes into play.  Good luck

Curt has been in the Indianapolis Real Estate business for over 10 years and spent his first years learning all aspects of commercial management and brokerage.  He has had great success in managing existing commercial projects and new retail and office developments.  Curt specializes in building owner representation and purchases in the Westfield Indiana market as well throughout the Indianapolis Metro area.  Curt is passionate about growing the local Westfield community and in his free time  volunteers with Westfield Youth Assistance and raising 2 children with his wife Jennifer.