So you’ve got a new listing contract signed… congrats! Now it is time to photograph. While most listings would benefit from the services of a professional photographer, for the DIY’er in the group, many agents can do a great job on smaller listings. Here are some tips and tricks you can use to capture nicer photos on your smaller listings with some basic equipment or your smart phone.
Tip #1 – Plan / Prepare
Most of our work happens away from the camera. For each room remove as much clutter as possible. Roll up place mats. Turn on all lights. Open all window treatments. Close the toilet lids. Turn off TVs and computers, move all remote controls. Make sure all the closets are closed and all the beds are made. I like to remove tissue boxes (they remind me of being sick). Have the homeowner move any vehicles off the property for the exterior photos. As you do all this, start to plan which angles you’d like to photograph. Try to select angles that show multiple rooms at the same time when possible.
Tip #2 – Time to shoot
Stand in the corner! Because you likely don’t have a wide angle lens, you’ll want to photograph as close to the corner of the room as possible. Really squeeze in there. Corner shots make rooms look larger and are the photos most liked by agents. Be sure to photograph at a height of about three and a half to four feet. Unless your listing has very high ceilings, DO NOT PHOTOGRAPH AT EYE LEVEL! Photos at eye level include mostly ceiling, they also make the room look a lot smaller. The only time you’ll break this rule is for the kitchen, you need to shoot higher in the kitchen to see over the counter tops. Try to keep your camera / smart phone as level as possible. You do not want to tilt your camera left or right, likewise, you want to make sure your camera is also not tipped up or down.
Tip #3 – Exposure
So, you’ve tidied up, you’re following all the tips and shooting away. You notice your photos look a little too dark. There are two ways to remedy this. If shooting on a smart phone, prior to taking the photo, touch an area on your screen that is dark. You should notice everything gets brighter. If you are using a camera, you are likely pointing directly at something bright (i.e. a window or lamp). Try changing your angle a little bit so you are pointing at a darker area of the room. When you take the photo over, you should notice it is much brighter. If you’re a little more comfortable with your camera, you can set it to Aperture Priority and increase your exposure to +1. Don’t worry if that sounds like a another language to you, there is another way to increase brightness.
Tip #4 – Post Production
You’ve got your photos… now what. From your smart phone, try downloading the Lightroom App. You can use the app to adjust your photos with simple sliders. Play around with it until you get the results you’re looking for. If using a camera, download photos to your computer and then upload them to your preferred photo editing software. I recommend Lightroom, although there are many options. Note that the MLS in your area will have instructions on how to upload.
If this all sounds like way to much, don’t worry! We are here to help.
Best of luck with the sale!!!
Capture Glow Photography