Before the era of house hunting online, a potential buyer’s first impression was the home’s curb appeal. Although curb appeal is still very important, the quality of photos representing a home is now the highest rated feature for homebuyers who are searching online. Most people will not take the time to read a home’s description if they can’t move past dark, blurry or/and unflattering photos. Therefore, capturing noteworthy photos is vital to selling your client’s home.
Some clients may want their home to be professionally photographed, or you may prefer to have a professional take the photos for other reasons. However, if you do not feel the need to hire a photographer then you are left with the responsibility of taking the photos. Some agents will invest in expensive cameras while others will simply utilize their phone’s camera.
Here are a few tips on how to take eye-catching photos:
- Prepare/Stage the house -You want to show off the space, not what is in it. Look around and make sure the home is clean and free of clutter. Do not be afraid to ask your clients to move furniture when necessary. If this leaves the house looking dull, add decorative pieces to freshen up the area.
- Timing of photographs – Use natural lighting as much as possible. Remember to open the curtains and turn all the lights on to brighten the room. The flash on a camera is not always your best option, it can create unflattering shadows. Try to avoid taking photos on rainy days and evenings. Conversely, exterior shots should be taken on an overcast day when the sun won’t cast shadows on the house.
- Angles and Composition – In order to incorporate as much of a room as possible, the best spot to capture the photo is from a corner or doorway. This angle will open up the room, giving it a spacious look and feel. Exterior photos should never be shot straight-on. Instead, the view-point should be angled allowing the depths of the home to be seen.
- Don’t deceive potential buyers – Of course you want to make your client’s home appear as beautiful as possible, but avoid making it look like a completely different house. Potential buyers will not be amused when the images of the house online are deceivingly different in-person. This often occurs when certain lenses used on a professional camera make small rooms appear deceptively large.
- Take numerous photos – You are not paying for film rolls, so you have the ability to take as many photos as necessary; experimenting with multiple angles, lighting, and settings. The more photo options you have, the less likely you will need to go back and re-shoot certain photos.
After the Photo Shoot
- Consider touching up the pictures – Once you’ve selected the best photos, you may still feel the need to adjust the lighting, crop out a telephone pole, etc. Do not forget to test out the HDR (high definition resolution) feature most smartphones offer on the camera. If you want to go the extra mile and purchase post-processing software, there is a handful of options available on the market.
- Mobile Photography Apps – If you use your smartphone, there are mobile applications that will work wonders on your photos, and will most likely cost you only a fraction of the cost to purchase a post-processing software program.
***If you are interested in learning more about photography apps available for your smartphone, here is a link with the 10 best editing apps, according to theguardian.com