Everyone in your family thinks they know how to take pictures to sell your house, right? They say you shouldn’t spend money hiring a professional photographer since you are already doing this whole thing in the For Sale By Owner (FSBO) way. But trust us: even if you have some photographing experience, there are some tricks that sometimes go beyond the photography knowledge, and we’re here to talk about them; to talk about how to take pictures to sell your house.
Let’s go from the macro to the micro.
Photography shot list
The first thing you should be concerned about when figuring out how to take pictures to sell your house has nothing to do with the camera and its specs. It’s about choosing your shots. You need to figure out which are the places that “sell the house” combining optics (the place that looks the best on camera) and facts (the place that actually has a lot of value, independently of the way it looks on camera). What do we mean by that: a wine cellar adds value to a home but maybe on camera it’s not that good looking. Maybe it’s located in a corridor or too close to the wall so there’s not a lot of space for you to pull back and take a good shot of it. We’re not saying you shouldn’t take pictures of it but it will be further down the list. The wine cellar will be a good sell live, in-person. Focus first on the places that look awesome on camera, like a living room with a tall ceiling, or a large bathroom with an antique bathtub or something like that. Mix it up wide shots with a few close-up detailed shots whenever you have interesting stuff like the bathtub or the cellar.
Make things bigger and better
Second thing to look for when learning how to take pictures to sell your house is investing in the mise en scene – that is, the arrangement of scenery in the frame of the picture. Sort of like a home stager, but focused on the picture. So, of course, in the aforementioned tall-ceiling living room, you would take furniture that is too big away, from the front to the back, so you can have a sense of how big and wide the living room is. Maybe tilt the sofa in a way that its direction extends from the camera, creating a pathway for your eyes.
Best time to take pictures
Take pictures in daylight. Avoid noon, as the sun is directly above the head. Try to do it early in the morning or the middle of the afternoon so the sunlight comes in a 45-degree angle and casts better shadows.
Turn all lights inside (even practical light) despite the fact that there’s natural light outside. It will add color to the end result and appear homey. Never use flash.
Very important to have everything clean and organized in the frame. Pictures only make the mess clearer.
Prefer wide angle lens to make the room look bigger.
Never go flat. Find the corners so the direction of the room always expands from the camera. As a rule of thumb, the only things that should “block” your view are the walls. And even then: find the corners to make the walls meet the furthest away from the camera possible.
Do you know how to edit pictures? Nothing fancy, but some corrections here and there are always good. Highlighting shadows, correcting the color to appear as faithful as possible to “real life”; that’s all important for a great finishing result, so if you don’t know how to do it, find someone who can.
But that’s the basic. Nowadays, if you’re serious about how to take pictures to sell your house, you need to take note of the use of Drones in Real Estate. Real Estate Drone Photography is a big thing because it provides homeowners the chance to make aerial shots that display the magnitude of their house in full glory. And, sometimes, it can help with situations like the wine cellar. Instead of the photographer having to capture the magnitude of the wine cellar through one static picture, you can do it by shooting a video that goes through the length of the cellar.
If first impressions matter, pictures are the most important marketing tool; it’s the first point of contact between possible home buyers and your property. That’s why it’s really important that you hire a real estate agent that works with professional real estate photographers that have experience taking pictures of the properties. They will know how to make the most of your house and workaround any imperfection to make it seem perfect. But if you don’t, if you go about it by yourself, at least we hope you’ve learned some tricks on how to take pictures to sell your home.