Listing photos are a critical part of the home-buying and selling process. People have been home hunting online for some time now, but Covid-19 pushed the trend into high gear, as opportunities to view homes in person due to public health measures became severely limited. Digital transactions became the go-to way to buy, and the trend is here to stay – if not as a safety measure during this pandemic environment, then for the sheer convenience they offer. That means if you don’t pull buyers in via the listing photos, they won’t waste their time seeing the home in person. And oftentimes, it is the in-person experience that really “sells” the buyer on their dream home. They say a picture is worth a thousand words, so as a home seller or listing agent, knowing how to take great listing photos is an important part of the process.

How to Take Great Listing Photos

Stage Your Home

Stage your space before you start snapping listing photos. It’s best to start this process well in advance, since decluttering and staging can take time. Ensure your furnishings are in good condition, properly scaled, and arranged in a visually pleasing way. This will result in a space looks larger and well organized – both great selling features!

Use a Good Camera

Many listing agents work with professional photographers to ensure the photos are up to par. However, you don’t necessarily need professional-grade equipment to take great listing photos. Most cell phones are already equipped with good cameras, but if you’d like to invest a little more money for higher-quality photos and more settings, consider using a DSLR.

Light It Up!

Proper lighting is key to achieving a space that looks fresh, open and airy. Schedule your photo shoot during daylight hours. Throw open the curtains and blinds, and let the sun shine in. Turn on all the lights in the room when photographing it. Avoid using the camera’s built-in flash, which can create unsightly shadows and dark corners.

Pay Attention to Angles & Composition

Maximize the space by shooting your photos from the doorway or a corner of the room, and consider what will be framed in the shot. Pay special attention to the view through windows and what’s being reflected in mirrors. Avoid capturing the large backs of sofas and chairs in your photos.

Be Realistic About Your Home

Using a wide-angle lens can mislead buyers into thinking that the home is bigger than it appears. This also applies to other optical illusions and “trick” photography. While this strategy may lure people in, it won’t make a sale. Ensure the photos are an honest and realistic representation of your home.

Great listing photos are the first step to bringing buyers in for a closer look. Your real estate agent may recommend a real estate photographer as part of the services they offer. Ask about this, and regardless if you’re doing it yourself or going with a pro, keep these five photo tips in mind!