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Are You Doing One Of These Real Estate Photo Fails?

May 18, 2020

Real Estate Photo Fails

Virtual selling has never been more important than it is right now. And as someone who sells houses, you probably understand the importance of great visuals when it comes to capturing the attention of online home browsers. But here’s the problem: You’re a sales agent—not a professional photographer! Luckily there are several ways to up your photography game in the coming weeks. So if you want to avoid having your photos end up as embarrassing real estate photo fails read these five tips for taking better photos the next time you take your camera out to a move-in ready gem.

Check out our tips below and if you want even more info on this topic, be sure to watch the replay of our Virtual Builder Town Hall from April 14 which was, “How To Protect Your Backlog With Engaging Photos.” We spoke with David Williams of RTP Photography and he had some awesome information to share!

Choose the right time/use natural light.

Does this seem obvious? Surprisingly I’ve seen a number of photos that are dark and fail to really show off beautiful natural lighting that comes hand-in-hand with a plethora of custom home designs. So be sure to take real estate photos during a sunny (or, better yet, partly cloudy) day to capture the best natural light inside your custom build or model home. This is because natural lighting will help your photos become saturated with more colors. The sun should be behind the house to ensure the best lighting effects overall. If you want to plan your photoshoot around the best possible natural light, check out the Sun & Moon app.

Invest in a good camera.

The camera your smartphone is equipped with is of high quality IF you have a recent model. If you have an older phone, then you need to invest in a good camera. Buy a full-frame camera with a wide-angle lens which allows you to take pictures that look bigger and more inviting. I’ll add as a caveat that it’s perfectly okay to post (quality) smartphone images of your homes on social media. But you definitely need an arsenal of professional photos for advertising purposes such as your website and/or any print materials. Better yet – for those purposes, just hire a professional photographer with a great camera. That way you can stick to taking photos for social media posts and use your phone!

Use filters.

A polarizing filter will reduce glare in your photos, manage reflections in water or windows, and darken skies. In other words, using a polarizing filter will make your real estate photos look clean and crisp! But be careful—when selecting a filter for your photos, be sure it is the proper size for your camera lens. Again, this ties back into purchasing a professional camera to use when taking high-quality images for marketing purposes.

Use creative angles.

What photos really capture your attention? I want you to take a look through some of your favorite competitors’ websites and social media to see what they’re doing that you love. Chances are photos that really grab your attention are highly unique—usually starting with the angle the photo was taken from. Needless to say that the angle of a picture can make or break it. Instead of simply taking a picture from the corner of a room, consider angles that will capture the maximum amount of space. For example, taking a picture from a doorway will often allow you to capture an entire room. Whatever angle you choose, make sure to remove any items that may distract from the size and features of the room—don’t let construction materials or office papers mar your imaging. Another great way to learn photography tips is to pay attention to Instagram posts that catch your eye. Instagram is primarily a photo medium and the photos posted tend to be more creative and interesting. You can learn a lot from just following Instagram accounts that have great photos that you find interesting.

Use props.

This is a big one. I know it’s easier (and less expensive) to let potential buyers use their imagination with a blank canvas. But staging rooms will help set up images that people can picture themselves in, too. And—especially during times that virtual selling is the key to success—it gives online browsers a better idea of what all can fit into a space. But don’t settle at the big furniture pieces like kitchen tables and gathering room couches. Place a vase of flowers on a table or set single-color accessories to accent features of a room as well give it a homier feel.

Strong photos are essential to selling homes in today’s virtual market. And when done properly they can do the selling for you! Ask yourself: Do your photos entice or do they scare potential customers far away? Consider that if you’re not comfortable taking photos yourself, you can outsource this task to a pro.

Have other suggestions as far as taking great photos? Be sure to drop them in the comments!

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