The 5 step DIY Photography Guide for the Everyday Real Estate Agent 5 step DIY photography guide to boost your real estate sales


Are you a real estate agent struggling to photograph your real estate effectively? Several new properties popping up every day and a limited budget and time? Hiring a professional photographer can sometimes be expensive, time-consuming and difficult, especially during lockdown! Good news: You can still take expert-level photographs that will attract home-buyers on your own. 

Here’s an easy-to-follow comprehensive guide for all you overwhelmed real-estate agents or landlords out there. It’s not too technical, all you need is your smartphone and a can-do attitude and you’re good to go! 

Let’s get started. 


Step 1. Declutter, arrange and stage!

A great listing starts with a great space. Don’t be afraid to roll-up your sleeves and get dirty. It’s time to clean up and arrange the space you are selling.  Iron out wrinkles on bedsheets and wipe down the mirrors and windows. You want your customer to imagine themselves in the space, it is therefore paramount to give them a blank canvas to work with. This means no family photos, sports posters, political affiliations, or fridge magnets. 

Clear and empty all bins, litter, and stray items. Find that long-lost office chair under Mountain ‘Not-quite-dirty-enough-for-the-laundry’. Miscellany on desks and kitchen counters also must go. Finally, a cautionary tale from wives and girlfriends past… Put down that damn toilet seat! 


Step 2. Make a checklist. 

While it’s great to experiment and take several images, it may be useful to have a shot list of must-have photos for each property. This includes one photo of the bathroom, two wide shots of the kitchen, bedroom, and living room, one to three photos of the backyard and outdoor spaces, and the same for any additional features. Try to stick to landscape orientation for your photos, it looks more professional. Consider the unique selling point for your real estate – if there are amazing in-built wardrobes, snap them; a gorgeous fireplace, snap it; a great view from the balcony; snap it!   


Step 3. Don’t get too high, or too low. 

Unless you’re selling homes to Oompa-Loompas, there’s no need for your photographs to be taken from any lower than 4.5ft (1.4m). Taking photos from too low stops your customer getting a real feel of the space, and imagine themselves in it. Going too high runs the risk of it looking like CCTV footage. Incorrect heights make for skewed perspective photographs. What you want is to find a sweet spot, where you can view most of the furniture and fittings, along with some of the floor and walls as well. For example, in the bedroom, you might use a lower height perspective to view the bedding and side tables, and a taller point-of-view for the kitchen since the surfaces are all much higher. Using a tripod can help you level your photographs and maintain perspective throughout a set of photographs. 


Step 4. Let there be light!

Natural light is your best friend. I’ll say that again, natural light is your best friend. It’s time to open the curtains and blinds, best of all on an overcast day. While you cannot control the weather, indoor lighting can be relied upon as well. It’s best to avoid using your flash; even if you feel like you are becoming a camera-whiz, there are some things best left to the professionals. Flash can create overexposure and light imbalance if not used properly. If you are worried about the lighting in your photographs, do not fret; photo retouching and editing is the answer to your prayers. Still, if you do take a shine to photography you can learn how to use flash and other tools to your advantage. The next step is crucial to creating expert photographs for your real estate. 


Step 5. A touch of technology magic.

Your photos are never complete without editing and retouching. Splento offers retouches for your photographs ready in 24 hours. Retouching can adjust the light, sharpness, and orientation to perfection. You can even learn to edit your photos yourself. After these 5 steps, you will be looking at a beautiful listing that reflects a desirable lifestyle, the envy of your competitors and the aspiration of your customers.    

Learn more about retouching and why you need it


Today, regardless of circumstance, bad real estate photography is just not an option. Avoid making key mistakes such as cluttered spaces, bad angles, and overexposed images. Your customers are primarily online today, so work towards acing your first digital meet-and-greet with them through your listings. By applying this easy 5 step guide to your real-estate photography routine, you will definitely see a boost in your views and inquiries. 

Find out more marketing tips for real estate agents


If all else fails and you just can’t seem to get your phone photography to work (we know the feeling) you can rely on Splento’s community of expert and affordable real estate photographers. Bookings are made easily and are flexible, pricing starts from just £99/$149 an hour, and your images reach you fully edited and website-ready within 24 hours. Our professionals also specialise in a range of services to make your spaces more marketable and boost your real estate sales, including VR tours, videography, and drone photography.