Creative Content, Photography

Real estate photography that sells: Tips from pro photographers

Time to Read: 3 minutes


There is a lot more that goes on during a real estate photography shoot. 


One of the common myths we get is that real estate photography is just a quick point and shoot game.


It is if you want super basic results. 


If you want a home that attracts high-level buyers, then you want marketing content that matches that. 


[Read to learn how to secure high-quality vendor paid advertising here.]


Everything from the pre-production to the final stages of the production has to be thoroughly prepared and checked for quality. 


It requires working smoothly, efficiently and developing a detailed eye for different types of spaces.


Our in-house photographers have broken down the photoshoot into three essential stages and provided key tips to ensure the photographs come out perfectly.


First step: Do a walkthrough


The first thing is to do a complete walkthrough of the house to allocate shots. 


As photographers are given a limited amount of time to shoot, they must decide on how to make the best use of the natural light and sun direction.


During this first step, each room and its layout is closely inspected to judge how and where to take the photo. This will usually involve moving furniture around to suit the angle of the photo. 


Depending on whether the agent wants the room to ‘look good’ or ‘look big,’ no two spaces should be captured the same. For example, if you want to make a terrace’s formal lounge look good, use a straight-on angle, but this may also compromise the size of the space. 


It’s good to test two options as shooting one or the other may mean losing either space or feel. 


Second step: On-site touch-ups


The second step of real estate photography is what we call ‘on-site photoshopping.’  This is staging and doing last-minute styling touch-ups before shooting.


Here photographers will move furniture around, add or remove styling elements to enhance a space. 


The key tip here is to style to the camera: change the styling when you change the angle. 


Here are a few things to do:


  • Tidy up cables and wires
  • Avoid reflections in windows (people and objects)
  • Refine details like adding a throw to a couch, filling in cups, folding towels, and adding in cookbooks to soften a scene
  • Coffee tables frequently need to be moved to obscure spots to balance out the perspective (ie bring it closer to the camera if it feels off in the photo)


Don’t forget to take a photo of the room before you move anything as you will need a reference when moving things back. 



Third step: Shoot practically and efficiently 


With the rooms finally prepped, staged and the shots planned, it’s time to double down and shoot.


During this stage, photographers must work and move swiftly and efficiently to get the shots right in time. 


A good reference point used by our photographers here is being mindful of height. 


As covered, to fully capture the space photographers will need to adjust the camera angle and height according to the room. 


Each room will have varying floor space so you want to utilise a camera position that enhances that space. For example, big rooms allow you to go higher to see more space, while smaller rooms like terraces will require you to go lower to get better floor space. 


A good starting point is to adjust the height of the camera based on the height of the furniture. For example, go level at the height of the benchtop, dining surfaces, or couch without flattening any surfaces (see above). 


We also recommend balancing the inside and outside flow by capturing any highlight outdoor features from inside. For example, if the living room shot will also capture the outside terrace.


The tip here is to style the outdoor area first in the beginning, that way the subsequent photos will look consistent.


Post-production: Retouching


Retouching is an essential part of the post-production process when it comes to real estate photography.


Making even just a few adjustments can radically boost and enhance the image to create a more engaging representation of the home and an editorial finish to the final product.


When editing you’ll want to look out for things like the colour balance, removing any small unwanted details like fixtures or heavy clouds, and sharpening the overall image.


Lastly, you want no stone left unturned. Check for the quality and check it again.


A house for sale deserves all the care and attention.


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Skyline Creative is dedicated to creating the highest possible quality real estate marketing to elevate our clients’ brands.