If you are looking to put your house on the market, you may have recently started looking online at other homes for sale. One thing you have probably picked up on is that houses with bad photos aren’t ones you want to click on.
Bad real estate photos can cause your home to stay on the market longer, decrease its value, and prohibit people from coming to view your home in person.
Real estate photos of your home may be just as important as selecting the right listing price. Because photos are such a valuable marketing tool, you want to make sure you don’t miss out on the opportunity to showcase your home to potential buyers.
To avoid making some terrible photo mistakes, this guide has everything you need to know about to how to take good real estate photos and market your home like a pro.
Don’t Close the Curtains or Blinds
As far as real estate property photos are concerned, light is of the utmost importance. Not only will dark photos make your home look smaller, darker, outdated, and confusing, it will also make it appear as though it doesn’t have enough natural light.
Even if your home has floor to ceiling windows, your home will look dark if your window coverings are closed during the photo session.
Natural light sells homes. People want to see a home with lots of windows and natural light coming through. Even the smallest houses will appear lighter and larger when light is shining through.
Make sure you showcase the amount of light your home has coming in by opening all of your window coverings. If you have heavy or ornate window treatments, it may even be better to remove them altogether for the photoshoot and marketing purposes.
This is especially important if your home or condo has a great view. If you can see beautiful natural scenery, a body of water, a skyline, or your own pretty piece of property through your windows, highlight this feature in the photos.
Make Sure Your House Is Clean
One of the biggest mistakes a seller makes when taking photos is not cleaning their house well enough beforehand.
People only want to see pictures of clean houses. Dirty houses make people uncomfortable and like they don’t want to buy the home.
Even if the house just has a light mess in the room, dirty areas will make your home look like it needs work. When people see a dirty room, they may also see a project. Projects cause potential buyers to see dollar signs.
If you do nothing else before completing your real estate photos, clean up your house. If this means enlisting family or friends, or hiring a cleaning service, do so.
Having your home cleaned for photos and for open houses or tours is critical to selling your home quickly.
If you’re selling your home, removing the clutter is one of the first projects you should tackle. Not only is decluttering critical for your real estate photos but it is also key to selling your house.
When you have photos taken with clutter all over, people will only see the clutter. Potential buyers may just keep swiping or scrolling if all they can see in the photos of your home is your stuff.
When selling your home, think less is more. The more you can pack up and store away, the bigger and brighter your home will appear not only in photos but also in person.
By removing some of your stuff, you’ll allow for your home to shine through in the photos. Clean spaces will showcase your home’s assets instead of your collections or child’s toys.
Decluttering will help you prepare to move as well. Your realtor can also help you decide what you should remove and what you should keep out if you have any questions.
Download High-Quality Photos
While it may seem easier to just snap a photo with your phone, the quality of your photos makes a big difference when potential buyers see them online.
Photos with a poor resolution will appear grainy or pixilated. Your realtor should recommend a professional photographer that will make sure your photos are high-quality so they show well online or on printed marketing materials.
The Devil is in the Details
You only have a few photos to grab the attention of potential buyers online. People looking online at home or through the MLS are likely only going to swipe through the first few photos they see. If they like what they see, they will keep scrolling to see more.
If a potential buyer just sees bad MLS photos, they will keep on moving to the next listing.
This is where photographing the details is key. If you have a renovated kitchen, for example, show off the details of the backsplash. If you have an expensive appliance package, zoom in and show off the brand name.
These small details can really hook a potential buyer and intrigue them to want to view your home in person.
Other details can include light fixtures, feature walls, fireplaces, windows, or pretty architectural details.
Check the Weather
If you know a photographer is coming to shoot pictures of your home and it is going to rain or blizzard outside, it might be a good idea to reschedule.
If it is too dark outside, your photographer will have to get a little more creative bringing more natural-looking light into your home. You also don’t want to show dark clouds and raindrops in all of the windows during your photoshoot.
There is something about a bright and sunny day that just makes everything look better.
This is also key if you are having a lot of exterior photos taken. You want the exterior of your home to look as good as possible. For drone or aerial photography, a clear day is a necessity.
If your house is on the market in the winter, it isn’t always possible to have a bright 75-degree day outside, but you can watch the weather to make sure it is at least sunny out when you have the photos taken.
If the outside of your home is one of the biggest selling features, pay attention to the weather and you will have much prettier photos to show for it.
Use Additional Light
If natural light or light fixtures in your home are lacking, you can fake it with additional lighting for the real estate photos. Tell your photographer if you think you may need them to bring additional lights or flashes.
Having brighter more well-lit spaces photographed will make your home feel cleaner and larger.
Having more light sources in your photos will almost never be a bad idea.
The More Photos the Better
People looking at your home want to know as much as possible about it through the photos. If you only show the exterior of your home, people may question what is inside.
By showing a lot of photos, you’ll provide potential buyers with much of what they need to know.
Even if your house needs a lot of work, it is better to show the photos. People looking to rehab a home will want to see what needs to be done.
If someone isn’t looking for a fixer-upper, they can just keep scrolling. That will save both of you time.
Highlight the Assets
When having photographs taken of your home, you want to highlight its best features and assets. If you are worried people will be disappointed by an outdated bathroom, show a lot of photos of the master bathroom that you did renovate.
If you have a great outdoor space, show it off. The same goes for any renovated room, updated space, major selling feature or wow factor.
By showing off your home’s best assets, you’ll have more people wanting to come to see your property and more traffic through the door.
Having great photos will also make people more excited about your home. The more emotionally attached they become the better when it comes time to make an offer.
Bad Real Estate Photos Can Devalue Your Home
Bad real estate photos are one of the worst things you can have when marketing your property for sale. If potential buyers are only seeing bad pictures online, they might be missing all of the great features your home has to offer.
Unfortunately, when it comes to photos, looks can be deceiving. To showcase your home in the best possible light, make sure it is as clean and fresh looking as possible.
Highlight your home's best features, show off the details, and most importantly, utilize as much light as possible.
Your real estate agent and professional real estate photographer will work with you to make sure your photos bring the most value to your home.