How to prepare your home for real estate photography and attract the attention of buyers looking at your property online.
Following this pre-shoot checklist will help ensure that your home is photographed quickly, efficiently, and with the best possible results.
- Remove vehicles from driveway and away from the front of the home.
- Place trash cans and anything that is not attached to the home out of site.
- Cut, rake, water grass, and remove any unsightly weeds or vegetation.
- Clean windows.
- Organize deck furniture, uncover grill, open patio umbrella, etc.
- Sweep or pressure wash driveway if necessary.
- Make sure yard is free of kid’s toys, evidence of pets, unnecessary clutter etc.
- Replace any burnt lightbulbs and ensure all bulbs are the same color temperature.
- Remove as much clutter as possible; especially personal belongings that are not included in the sale. Decluttered and tidy makes a bigger difference than “spotless”.
- Put away unsightly door mats and remove area rugs that might be hiding nice flooring like hardwood or tile.
- Remove all evidence of pets.
- Open up blinds and remove any fixed window coverings that block natural light.
- Turn off all TVs, computer screens, and ceiling fans.
- Conceal power cords; unplug them if necessary (except lights).
- Put all shoes away.
- Make sure there are no clothes in the machines or hanging in the laundry room.
- Make beds, straighten picture frames/artwork, organize pillows, etc.
- Avoid hiding items under beds or furniture.
- Remove any personal information that you wouldn’t want visible online.
- Clear all counter tops – A few small appliances, fruit bowls, plants etc. are ok, but avoid anything tall that might be distracting or block the view.
- Clear the fridge completely – Remove all magnets, photos, lists, etc.
- Clean appliances – Be sure to remove all fingerprints, smudges, etc.
- Put trash can away.
- Make sure sink is clean and free of dishes.
- Put away dish soap, cloths, etc.
- Remove calendars as they can date a listing.
- Straighten bar stools and table chairs.
- Put toilet lids down.
- Clear counter of all personal belongings.
- Clean mirrors.
- Close shower curtains – If the shower is a selling feature, remove all bottles, razers, soap, etc. and leave curtain open.
- Place a fresh roll of toilet paper on the holder.
- Remove toilet brush and trash can.
Best Practices to Consider
- Feel free to do a walkthrough with the photographer upon arrival but avoid following them around during the shoot.
- If you have limited space, consider designating a secondary room for temporary storage ahead of time rather than trying to move items from room to room while the photographer is on site.
- Make sure pets are out of the home or kenneled.
- Photographers will not be staging your home so please make arrangements with your Realtor or stager prior to the shoot.
- Don’t rush your photographer – Great images are critical when marketing a home for sale, so it is in your best interest to be patient and let your photographer do their thing.