An Ultimate Checklist of Real Estate Photography Essentials


An Ultimate Checklist of Real Estate Photography Essentials

When visiting your website, people are expecting a visually appealing online presence. We created this ultimate checklist for real estate photographers and businesses to explain what to do before, during, and after the photo shoot to create killer real estate photos. Don’t want to lower the price on your property? Then, consider better photos.

Before a Real Estate Photo Shoot:

In Real Estate business, one picture can be worth thousands of dollars. Every detail matters, so we highly recommend using this handy checklist while preparing your home for professional real estate photos.


  • Thoroughly clean the entire house
  • Remove all personal items and photos
  • Make sure all bulbs are of the same temperature (incandescent or compact fluorescent)
  • Turn off all the TVs, ceiling fans, screens
  • Open blinds/curtains to let in outside light
  • Make all beds
  • Remove the carpets in the bathroom and all small floor rugs to show actual flooring
  • Hide all the clothes and shoes in the closet


  • Close the garage doors
  • Remove the cars from driveway
  • Hide water hoses
  • Sweep around the house
  • Hide all personal items, such as balls, toys, etc.
  • Tidy up outdoor furniture, clean the pillows and cushions
  • Thoroughly clean the porch
  • Clean pool
  • Hide all the trash cans


During a Real Estate Shoot:

You have 20 seconds for love at first sight – that’s how long it takes for the potential home buyers to check out the first photo of the online property listing. Follow these professional real estate photography tips to create breathtaking interior and exterior photos:

(1) Use a wide-angle camera lens only to emphasize space, capture the full essence of a room, and create a sense of depth.

(2) Emphasize space and use natural light as often as possible. Those two qualities can significantly improve any photo!

(3) Shoot your real estate photographs in the horizontal or landscape orientation when possible, because our brain finds the horizontal/landscape view more aesthetically pleasing.

(4) When choosing the right camera for your real estate project, forget about megapixels for a second and buy a full frame camera. For professional real estate photographers, sensor size, not megapixels, play the most important role.

(5) When shooting, try to emphasize each room’s selling point, whether it is the natural light, the spaciousness, the unusual shape, or the little nook in the corner.

(6) Don’t reveal all of it though, leave some space for the imagination, so the buyers will be eager to tour your property and see more!

Post-Processing Real Estate Photos:

(1) Remove lens flare. While shooting directly into the sun can be tricky, it produces beautiful results. Lens flare can add to the scene, but usually, the photo will be better off without it, so it’s important to learn how to control lens flare in post-processing.

(2) Master the Adobe Lightroom to crop, sharpen, resize, and enhance your real estate photos.

(3) Adjust the colors –even if you are using natural light, it’s important to adjust your colors to create a nicely contrasting scene.

Bonus: How to create eye-catching real estate photos that stand out from the crowd?

(1) Create a 3D listing. We talked about an importance of a dynamic 3D tour before (link), but we’ll say it again - as technology continues to advance, your home buyers are going to expect a virtual tour of their property. As of today, Matterport offers the best software and hardware to create interactive3D tours. The company also has free how-to videos, articles, and webinars for those who want to understand this cutting-edge technology better.

(2) Analyze real estate photos you love to understand better how and why they work.

(3) Bring your photos to life by adding some bright colors. When selling a home, a neutral color pallet works best, so one home appeal to different buyers. But it’s the pops of bright, vibrant colors that bring real estate photos to life! We always try to add colorful artwork, flowers, or eye-catching pillows to make real estate photos garner attention.

Professional Photography is The Secret of Success:

Do you know what transformed Airbnb, a falling start-up, into a successful, billion-dollar company? The answer might surprise you - professional real estate photography. Airbnb cares a lot about the quality of their images, and that’s what attracts their potential clients. People add the attractive photos to their Pinterest boards, share them with friends, or post them on Facebook. Either way, professional photos are playing a key part in the success of Airbnb and many real estate businesses.

Want to take your real estate business to the next level? Professional real estate photography might be what you were looking for.


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