Has your home been on the market for months, with barely any interest from buyers? Then it’s time to take action. The very first step in getting your property sold is making sure it looks appealing to prospective new owners.
Before they decide to inspect the property, the first thing buyers will see is the advertisement, either online or in print. Blurry, dark or just plain unappealing photos can completely discourage househunters from even getting to the inspection stage.
To help you get buyers through the door, we’ve put together a list of the top 10 photography tips for sellers. Follow the guide below to make sure you capture your property’s best side – without having to hire a professional.
1. Clean it up. This might seem like a no-brainer, but how many real estate listings have you seen where the property looks surprisingly messy? Store all toys, food and personal items away. You don’t need these detracting from the overall feel of the house.
2. Have the right camera. A smartphone camera will not cut it. A regular point-and-shoot will do well, though wide-angle lenses often work best when shooting interiors. But be careful not to get too close to your subject when using these lenses as this can distort the image.
3. Add some furniture. Avoid shooting an empty room. Add a few pieces of furniture, even if it’s just a chair or two in the living room. This gives househunters a better sense of the size of the rooms, meaning they will be less likely to be disappointed during an inspection.
4. Go for natural light. Almost every home looks best when filled with natural light. So open the windows, and avoid turning on extra lamps or using a flash.
5. Consider the timing. Either first thing in the morning or at twilight are the best times to photograph inside a property. This is when the outside light is soft, with the light coming through the windows matching the interior of the property. When photographing the exterior, the property should never be backlit by the sun. So wait until the harsh midday sun has passed, ideally outside the hours of 10am and 4pm.
6. Try every corner. The best interior photography seeks out every angle. Before you start, take a photo from each corner of the room. Review these before deciding which one presents the space the best. Always step back and try to look at the space objectively. Is there anything you can add to the scene? Any furniture that should be moved to a different position?
7. Add some props. Vases full of flowers, some magazines and bowls of fruit can all help to make the home more appealing to the eye. You could set the dining table or add a few coffee table books. Just don’t go overboard – clutter is never a good look.
8. Use a tripod. This allows you to take your time to get the composition of each photo exactly right. It will also ensure you have a steady hand, reducing the likelihood you will end up with blurry or grainy photos.
9. Keep the camera level. Otherwise you risk giving the impression that rooms are smaller than they appear or that the walls are slightly slanted. Instead, keep the camera at about chest height and shoot every room straight on.
10. Keep it straight. Look at the vertical and horizontal lines in the room, such as wall breaks and window sills. These should be kept straight and level, otherwise they become distracting to the eye.