RESIDENTIAL REAL ESTATE PHOTO PREP LIST

In today’s market, more than 90% of home buyers start their home search online where photos of your home become the first reason buyers choose to look at your property over others listed in the area. First impressions are everything!  I've compiled this list not only to help make your property outshine the competition but to ensure that your home photographs well. The more people come see your house, the bigger the chances you'll receive an offer.

Please be aware that once I arrive I might still move some items and furniture around to help create a “look” or “stage” a scene. I like using some "props" to add impact to a photo and play on the home’s lifestyle. While not vital, it would be quite helpful if you could have some of these items I mention on-hand.

IMPORTANT: Please don't schedule any other services that day so as to not interfere with the photographs.  


 

FRONT EXTERIOR

CURB APPEAL SELLS!

Arguably, the most important shot of all! Home buyers will make a decision to look at more photos of your house if they like what they see.

  • Make sure that no vehicles are on the driveway nor in front of the house
  • Put away garbage cans, hoses, lawn equipment, etc.
  • Turn ON front porch lights
  • Power wash driveway, walkway, mailbox
  • Clean/wash windows
  • Open all front window blinds and curtains and make sure they look the same from the outside
  • Close garage doors

LANDSCAPING

  • Cut grass
  • Prune trees and shrubs, especially the ones obstructing the view of your house
  • Apply fresh mulch or pine straw
  • Plant blooming flowers
  • Remove and replace dead plants or flowers
  • Blow leaves and debris off driveway & yard
* Please have these items taken care of before I get there so I can start taking photos of the outside as soon as I arrive.

INTERIORS

A lived-in home and a house for sale photograph a bit differently. Personal photos and knick-knacks look great in a home but do not necessarily make good real estate photos. Many of these items will just distract the potential buyer from seeing the size and features of a room.

  • Open window blinds and curtains to let in more light
  • Turn ON all lights
  • If you have a fireplace be prepared to light it. Lit fireplaces look cozier and more welcoming

CLEANING

Because my photographs are bright and crisp, you will be able to notice dust and dirty mirrors in the photos. A clean and well-kept house looks beautiful and inviting not only in photos but also in person. 

  • Declutter - pack away personal photos and collectables but try to strike a balance between decluttered and empty. Leave out elements that will make your home appealing
  • Check ALL light bulbs and replace any non-working ones
  • Make sure that chandeliers, ceiling fans, and mirrors and glass doors are clean
  • Put away toys
  • Turn OFF ceiling fans and make sure they are clean

TIP: Clean mirrors with a solution of half vinegar and half water. Wet a newspaper, dip into solution, rub in slow circles. Buff with a dry newspaper.

 

 

DINING ROOM

  • Set your dining room table (optional).
    A large dining table can look bare and uninviting, so styling it up can increase the appeal.
  • Don't hide your table under a tablecloth.
  • An oversize arrangement can look too stiff and formal, so try lining up a series of smaller vessels down the center of the table instead.

STYLING IDEAS:

  • Short vase with fresh cut flowers
  • Hurricane candle holder with large candle
  • China, silver, stemware
  • Placemats, table runner

KITCHEN

  • Clear counters but leave a few appliances (no more than three)
  • Clear the refrigerator of magnets, photos, schededules, menus, etc.
  • Clean and polish all appliances
  • There should be no dirty dishes in the sink

STYLING IDEAS:

  • A bowl of fresh fruits (i.e. apples, citrus fruits)
  • Fresh vegetables on a chopping board (i.e. tomatoes, scallions)
  • Beverages (i.e. soft drinks, juices, sparkling water, wine)
  • Cookbooks
  • Tea kettle, Dutch Oven

BEDROOMS

  • Put fresh linens on the bed and have it neatly made
  • Use decorative pillows, shams and bed skirts
  • Declutter nightstands
  • Remove items under bed that may be visible

STYLING IDEAS:

  • Magazines/Books
  • Reading glasses
  • Throw blankets
  • Breakfast tray

BATHROOMS

  • Clear bathroom counters and hide away toiletries
  • Tuck away shower/bath items
  • Place fresh towels for a soothing spa look

STYLING IDEAS:

  • Fancy soap bars and toiletries
  • Apothecary jars filled with cotton balls, cotton swabs, or seashells
  • Fresh flowers (i.e. orchids, tulips)
  • Fluffy white bathrobe
  • Candles

HOME OFFICE


 
  • Declutter desk
  • Try to hide cables, cords and power extensions as much as you can

STYLING IDEAS:

  • Laptop, computer or iPad on desk
  • Notepad and pen 

BASEMENTS


 

A finished basement can be a huge selling asset so don't neglect this part of your home.

  • Uncover and set up pool table
  • Clean and organize bar area
  • Set our popcorn and candy in front of TV/movie screen
  • Don't turn on the TV. I will Photoshop a movie scene onto the screen

STYLING IDEAS:

  • Popcorn, boxed candy
  • Board games or playing cards set on game table
  • Video game controllers
  • Cocktails or beer by the bar

DECK/BACKYARD

  • Power wash deck
  • Set up patio furniture and open patio umbrella
  • Uncover the grill
  • Place beverages on patio table
  • Use container plants to add color and style
  • Light the firepit or outdoor fireplace

STYLING IDEAS:

  • Pitcher of tea and glasses
  • Cocktails
  • Fresh flowers on patio table
  • Candles (for twilight shots)

LAUNDRY/MUD ROOM

A clean and organized laundry and mud room can be a real selling feature, so if you can, I suggest you also get these rooms ready for photos.

STYLING IDEAS:

  • Laundry detergent
  • Folded towels
  • Hangers
  • Coats/jackets, hats
  • Purse
  • Backpack