In the world of real estate, this cannot be truer. House-hunters would agree that real estate photography is a key factor in their decision-making process. As a realtor, you’d know that real estate photos can make or break a sale.
It’s relatively easy to use photography when showcasing a finished home. Frankly, it all boils down to making a property attractive enough to clients without misleading them.
But how do you use it when the property is still in the pre-construction phase?
The answer lies in technology. Thanks to the internet, anyone can buy a condo that’s not even ready for occupancy yet. Just check out these pre-construction condos in Toronto, for example.
Moreover, including photographs of an ongoing construction project tells a story. Construction photography adds depth and a behind-the-scenes story to someone’s future home.
To get started, you need to equip yourself with the right tools and practice to achieve that aesthetic. Here are some recommended equipment, tips, and tricks for real estate photography tools:
Real estate photography Tools and Equipment
- A good camera. When we say a good camera, we do not mean your phone camera. Procuring a quality camera, whether mirrorless or a digital single-lens reflex camera (DSLR), ensures quality photos as well. If you can change the lenses or add flash and wireless triggers to your camera, then better.
- Lenses. Wide-angle lenses are handy for making small spaces look bigger. For a full sensor, a 16-35mm lens is good enough. For cropped sensor cameras, you can use either a 10-22mm or 12-24mm lens. Tilt-shift lenses can be especially useful to straighten the lines of your subject that appear to be converging, such as wall edges.
- Tripod. If you’re second-guessing getting a tripod, please don’t. A tripod is a MUST. You need it for stability when shooting low-light images, especially in construction areas. You can also get a tripod with a built-in leveling tool, so your shots are always leveled.
- Flash and lighting equipment. Sad to say, the built-in flash in your cameras will never be enough to fully illuminate rooms. You can invest in flash diffusers and wireless triggers for this.
- Camera pole. A camera pole can help you photograph exteriors by elevating your shots to new heights. It also helps in avoiding obstructions on the ground level.
- Drone equipment. Speaking of exteriors, you can also use drone equipment to take it to the next level. It’s not necessary, but aerial shots do make a difference as shown in this listing.
- Photo-editing software. Standard editing software like Adobe Photoshop and Lightroom can already give you the quality photos you need. Just don’t go overboard with editing so you don’t misrepresent the property.
- Safety gear. This only applies when you’re shooting construction sites. As an ongoing project, you need to wear the required safety gear, e.g. boots or a hard hat. You might be able to borrow these when you enter the site. Nonetheless, safety always comes first!
(Image source: Unsplash)
When it comes to real estate photography, there’s no such thing as a “one-size-fits-all” aesthetic. Just make sure that the one you’re going for will fit your current subject:
- Living room – warm and inviting
- Bedroom – cozy
- Kitchen and dining space – clean and functional
- Bathroom – tidy and large (since it’s usually the smallest room)
- Exterior – natural light
- Construction site – cinematic or moody night shots
Also take note of these elements for fool-proof images:
- Sufficient and consistent lighting. Schedule your shoots at the best possible time with natural light: either early morning or at golden hour. When it comes to night shots, make sure you bring your trusty lighting equipment with you. Don’t forget your tripod as well to avoid blurry photos.
- Good composition. Adjust camera height and shooting angles accordingly, especially if you want to highlight selling points. Make sure your shots are level.
- Selling points. As said earlier, draw the eye towards a room’s highlights, such as a bedroom’s view or the living room’s centerpiece.
- Different perspectives. Move around when necessary to give different perspectives of a room. Shake it up once in a while so you don’t fall into a pattern of boring outputs.
- Exclude obstructions. Always be wary of clutter, trees, cable wires, and other obstructions. Pets, children, and other people are also a no-no.
Truth be told, there’s tough competition in real estate photography. But like any industry, it all boils down to quality.
Remember to adapt to your subject. Whether it’s interiors or exteriors, be flexible in your shooting style. Your goal is to capture your subject in the best light, so always pay attention to lighting and composition.
To achieve quality photos, you must also invest in quality equipment. A good camera, tripod, and multiple lenses will get you far. Give that a boost with lighting equipment and drones, and you can be unstoppable.
Finally, practice and keep grabbing opportunities to learn. Photography is a skill you can hone with hard work and patience. Look at how some of the top real estate photographers do it.
Remember that the goal of real estate photography is to make photos speak for themselves. Tell a story with your photos. Give clients a glimpse of how their lives would be when living in the space. Give the space character with your fresh and unique perspective.
With skill and precision in photography, you can effectively market any property—finished or unfinished.