Thanks for the post Stacie. One thing you left out is calling a professional Real Estate/Commercial photography. Here in Omaha there are several of us and we all charge reasonable rates. Far better rates than a studio photographer. Give it a try.
Subtitle: Tell Me Again How You Earned Your Commission??
Bad listing photos (aka unsexy photos) are not breaking news. How many years have we been laughing at each others' pictures?? I don't know about you, but I think it's unethical to list a house with no intention of selling the house. And chances are you're not going to be able to (1)sell your listing, (2)make your clients happy enough to send you oodles of referrals, and (3)GET PAID at the closing table with less than adequate photography.
1)If you are not a photographer, find someone in your office or friends or family who is.
2)If you don't have a wide angle lens, either buy one or borrow one. I own a Sony DSC-H9. For me, it was cheaper to spend $99 on a wide angle lens than to buy a new camera with one built in. If you're in the market for a camera, I've heard nothing but praise for various Panasonic Lumix models. Don't think you have to buy a new one. Try Ebay.
3)A Fish-eye lens is not a wide angle lens. Enough said. Don't use it.
4)Realtors tend to document and not sell lifestyle. Are you taking pictures of 11x11 bedrooms? Closets? light fixtures? Plumbing fixtures? Hallways? Chances are you only have 10-12 precious photos to tell a story in your MLS. For goodness sake, make every one of them count. If you honestly can't find 12 good shots, take a picture of the neighborhood park, pool, or school. Anything's better than a picture of a white wall.
5)Don't shoot straight down. Ok, this goes back to us documenting things. I am SO guilty of standing over a jetted tub and taking a picture straight down. Guilty. Try backing up from the tub (with your wide angle lens), kneeling down a bit, and taking the shot at about waist level. You've now progressed from a tub salesman to a lifestyle salesman.
6)Don't shoot into the sun. Come back at 8am or 7 pm when the light is softer. Preferably in the evening. You'll have more time to work then.
7)Don't aim your camera at the window. Your shot will be completely blown out. Aim at the wall, push the button down halfway, then point your camera back in the previous direction and take your shot. If there is still too much light difference between the windows and the interior, try using a slave flash. They're inexpensive and easy to use.
8)Update Your new construction photos frequently. If you still have a photo of 2x4s and I have a buyer that needs to close quickly, how else am I supposed to know that your home has been bricked up with carpet, counters, cabinets and paint?
9)Use a photo editor if necessary. If you end up with nothing but crooked photos, save your reputation and go to www.picnik.com. You can straighten, crop, tweak the lighting - just don't overdo it :) And it's FREE.
Have fun with your photos!!
Stacie Wells (@augustagaliving)