Picture-Perfect Homes: 10 Tips for Stunning Real Estate Listing Photos


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Welcome to a world where pixels and properties collide, where a well-composed image can spark dreams of a new home and a poorly presented one can make a potential buyer click away in seconds. In today’s competitive real estate market, the old adage “a picture is worth a thousand words” couldn’t be more accurate.

In this Redfin article, we’ll unveil the secrets behind crafting real estate listing photos that not only stop potential buyers in their scrolling tracks but also beckon them to explore further. Whether you’re selling a home in Los Angeles, CA or a charming house in Salem, MA, these tips will elevate your real estate photography game and leave a lasting impression on those searching for their next home.

kitchen with pops of color redfin

Why real estate listing photos are so important 

Home listing photos are the virtual introduction of a property to the online real estate market. These visuals enable potential buyers to explore your home’s layout, features, and ambiance from the comfort of their screens. Clear and well-captured photos can highlight a property’s best features, create an emotional connection, and entice viewers to learn more. In contrast, poor-quality or unappealing photos can turn potential buyers away before they even consider visiting the property in person. 

Essentially, listing photos act as the virtual curb appeal of a home, setting the tone for a potential buyer’s interest and influencing their decision-making process.

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10 expert tips for standout home listing photos 

1. Create an inviting atmosphere

“Creating captivating home photos requires a delicate blend of craftsmanship and precision,” mentions fine art photographer Sam Isaac Photography. “Natural light is harnessed to infuse warmth into interiors, while strategic composition highlights space and employs wide-angle lenses for expansiveness. Attention to vertical lines enables potential buyers to envision themselves in each room. Additionally, thoughtful furniture arrangement creates an inviting atmosphere.”

2. Balance techniques and artistry 

“Crafting the ultimate home photo requires a fusion of technique and artistry,” states real estate visuals company, Repropix Corp. “Essential pro equipment, including wide-angle lenses, showcases expansive vistas while delicately balancing natural and artificial lighting. Precise camera settings accentuate the property’s finest features, while strategic staging boosts buyer engagement by 30%.”

3. Add drone and twilight photography 

“In the modern era of home sales, professional photography and cinematic videos play a pivotal role in leaving a lasting impression on potential homebuyers,” says real estate marketing agency Circle Visions. “These visuals serve as the initial introduction to your property, igniting buyer interest and drawing them to explore further. Drone-captured elevated views, carefully composed interior shots featuring expert staging, and captivating twilight photos of the exterior evoke an emotional response, resonating with buyers on a personal level.”

4. Focus on framing

“One key tip stands out – framing is everything,” states seasoned real estate photographer  Aaron Curtis Photography. “Ensure your camera is positioned at chest height – a rule that maintains vertical lines, offering a balanced floor-to-ceiling ratio. Limiting the view to two walls opens up the space, allowing potential buyers to envision furniture placement. Carefully select detailed shots, including fireplaces and light fixtures, while omitting less appealing features like toilets, A/C units, and water heaters.” 

small bathroom well lit redfin listing photo

5. Capture the entire space in one frame

“Adopt the buyer’s perspective and capture the entire space in one frame,” recommends video production company Finally Real Estate Video & Photography. “Yes, I’ve even hopped into bathtubs to capture sinks and showers or rearranged furniture (including moving a whole couch) to achieve that perfect angle.”

6. Illuminate the home effectively 

According to architect and interior design photographer, Charles Mitri Photography, “A crucial tip is to illuminate your space effectively. Before the photography session, switch on any permanent light fixtures, such as chandeliers or under cabinet lighting in the kitchen. Showcase how these fixtures elevate the ambiance of each room. Disconnect and tuck away any electrical cords associated with appliances on the kitchen counter. Often, you can wind them up and hide them behind the appliance, creating a cleaner, less cluttered look and feel.”

7. Schedule shoots during mornings or late afternoons

“Achieving captivating home listing photos hinges on timing and lighting,” advises HDR real estate photographers XLRE Photography. “Opt for soft, evenly distributed sunlight by scheduling shoots during mornings or late afternoons, minimizing harsh shadows and enhancing appeal. Consider the home’s orientation to prevent direct sunlight and unflattering shadows. Precision with aperture (around f/8) ensures clarity and depth, while adjusting shutter speed balances interior and exterior exposure. Mastery of these techniques results in photos that showcase your property in its best light.”

8. Remember the important of editing

Kouros, the Redfin in-house and third-party photographer at VistaLux Studio emphasizes that the real magic happens during the post-editing phase. Statting, “Employing bracketing, a technique where a series of shots with different exposures are merged, ensures flawless lighting and details. This process sets the stage for subsequent editing steps, like replacing skies and adding the gentle flicker of fireplace flames, which significantly enhance the property’s visual appeal. Moreover, the inclusion of twilight shots with their soft, inviting glow adds an enchanting allure. All these carefully orchestrated elements come together harmoniously, crafting a captivating visual narrative.”

9. Tell a story with listing photos

“After capturing millions of property photos, we’ve learned a valuable lesson, finding a photographer who can enchant with images that narrate your listing’s story generates more interest (and offers),” insists real estate photographers Open Homes. “A photographer focused on your success will expertly guide and capture that ‘magic shot.’ Remember, it’s not just about one listing; exceptional visual marketing builds seller confidence and secures future listings.”

10. Don’t forget to clean and declutter

“Regardless of property value, certain factors are universal for outstanding listing photos,” says seasoned real estate photographers PHRAME Photography. “We prioritize cleanliness, depersonalization, and decluttering to let your property shine. Additionally, choosing a skilled photographer matters.”

formal living room with neutral colors redfin

A final note on capturing stunning real estate listing photos

As you embark on your journey to create exceptional real estate listing photos, remember that these images are the bridge between a listing and a homebuyer’s aspirations. By applying the insights shared in this article, you’re not only capturing rooms and walls, but you’re crafting the visual narrative of a potential future.

If you are represented by an agent, this is not a solicitation of your business. This article is for informational purposes only, and is not a substitute for professional advice from a medical provider, licensed attorney, financial advisor, or tax professional. Consumers should independently verify any agency or service mentioned will meet their needs. Learn more about our Editorial Guidelines here.

Marissa Crum

Marissa is part of the content marketing team and enjoys writing about real estate trends and home improvement. Her dream home is a contemporary-style house with ample outdoor space.

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