Photographing your staged home for online real estate viewing is one of the most important steps in attracting buyer interest when you are selling your home.
Online real estate photographs are the first thing that buyers look at when they search for a new home-- over 90% to be precise. It's to your advantage to take some amazing pictures of your home to post online. See the six must-have online real estate photos!
A recent survey found that 86% of home buyers felt that online real estate pictures were the most important and useful feature of their search.
Additionally, most buyers said they skipped right past listings that didn't have real estate photograpy to view. If you want to make a fast home sale, you must include visual elements of it online!
This page doesn't deal with which camera to use or camera settings, but rather with guidelines that will help you set up the perfect shot for your online real estate photos. The only thing you need is a good camera capable of producing high-resolution photographs.
I confess that I did use cell phone pictures for a listing once, but only because my camera batteries died in the middle of a shoot. The final product surprised me. My cell phone photos actually turned out better than those from my camera! (For those who are interested, I used a GalaxyS4 cell phone.)
Read on to learn how to take beautiful pictures of your newly staged home-- pictures that give you a faster home sale by making it stand out from the rest of the competition.
Scroll through other online real estate listing photos; take note of why some photos look better (or worse!) than others. Imitate those you think will work well for your home.
Make sure your property shows well before presenting your photos to the public. Take sample pictures and view them on your computer or smartphone to get a buyer’s perspective. Ask a friend for their opinion.
When photographing your staged home, create a lifestyle that home buyers are looking for; dress up your indoor and outdoor areas.
Browse through interior design pictures in magazines for ideas. Hang a hammock or place a porch swing outside, set up an outdoor table next to a built-in barbecue, create a spa-like bathroom...make your home look like a place where people have fun. See curb appeal for outside home staging ideas.
Compose your home interior pictures. When photographing your staged home, be sure to highlight high-end details and focal points of each room. Capture close-up pictures of interesting features like;
For diy tips on photographing your home exterior and outdoor spaces, see six must-have online real estate photos.
When taking interior pictures, try to do it using only natural light and on a sunny day. Open up all the draperies and window shades. The best picture taking light occurs in early morning (30 minutes after sunrise) and late afternoon (one hour before sunset) when the light is softer.
A well-lit interior is essential when photographing your staged home, so turn on all the lights if natural lighting isn't enough.
Avoid using a flash, if possible. A flash often creates a hard light, shadows, or an eerie quality. It will also reflect off windows and mirrors.
The feature wall in your photograph should be well lit. If lighting is insufficient, bring in a floor lamp and point it toward the subject wall. When photographing your staged home, make sure the light is behind you when you snap your pictures.
Bring in an extra floor or table lamp to fill dark corner spaces. Your goal is to balance the light so that there are no over-lit or under-lit spots in the shot.
Be aware of glare from windows, mirrors, and shiny objects in the room. Don't aim your light source directly at mirrors or windows-- the reflection will produce a harsh glare.
Don't point your camera directly toward a light source. This can produce shadows that will muddle most of your image.
Make good use of the light that is available in the room. Play with the shades, open the window treatments... experiment. If you’re relying on natural light alone, the best time to shoot depends on the placement and size of windows.
If too much light is coming in from the windows, close the drapes or window shades. Never photograph straight into the light. Bright light in the background is better than indoor lighting. You may want to experiment at different times of the day to see which lighting you prefer.
A general rule of thumb when photographing your staged home, is that eastside rooms should be taken in the morning, and westside in the afternoon. Rooms with northern and southern exposure should be taken when the rooms are at their brightest.
Don't shoot on a rainy, dreary day. This will make your home appear dismal and uninviting.
Avoid shooting pictures when the sun is glaring in the windows. Sometimes you just have to wait for the right light.
Home exterior night photos can be a charming addition to your online listing photos. Maybe you have appealing outdoor landscape lighting or a welcoming porch you’d like to highlight?
Indoor pictures can be taken at night, but the results won't be as reliable. Turn on all the lights and use your flash. Experiment by moving extra lamps around to improve your shots.
Home exterior shots taken on a bright sunny day make cast dark shadows on your home. Exterior shots often turn out better taken on overcast days.
Fluffing - This is a real estate term for exaggerating, by using descriptions to make a home sound better than it really is. This can be done with online real estate pictures as well. Fluffing, or fluffery, is done for the sole purpose of getting home buyers in the door.
As a former realtor, I viewed it as a complete waste of time, because when buyers actually saw the house, they were so irritated, they couldn't view the home objectively!
Fraud - Don’t photoshop too much. You could run into ethical issues if you falsely straighten up a deteriorating chimney, add wood flooring, or edit out a gravel pit next door. It’s acceptable to edit out things like your dog or a car in the driveway, or the garbage can you forgot to take in.
Take care that you don't falsely misrepresent your house by making it took too good. Buyers will only be disappointed and walk away angry.
I discovered this website, "Hooked on Houses," when I was looking for funny photographs. If you're in need of a good laugh, follow the link below to see the funniest, weirdest, and creepiest real estate photos ever! Be sure to read the commentary with each picture, because they're even funnier than the photos.
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