Expertise.com
2024

Real Estate Photographer FAQs

  • Introduction

    With the advancement of smartphone cameras, you may be tempted to forego hiring a real estate photographer in favor of taking images of the property yourself. It seems simple enough, and you can look at other professional photographs to get an idea of what angles to use.

    However, this approach might eventually end up costing you more than you would save. Especially since amateur smartphone photos aren't going to compete with professional photos in real estate listings. A professional photographer has the right training, experience, and equipment to take the best possible photos of the property you're attempting to sell.

  • Why use professional photography for real estate?

    Properties listed with professional photos are known to sell faster and for more money. All effective professional marketing utilizes high-quality, professional photos, and this conditions buyers' responses to attractive, premium images.

  • What equipment is needed for real estate photography?

    An experienced real estate photographer has the following equipment to take first-rate photos to sell your property fast:

    • High-quality digital camera
    • Wide-angle lens
    • Tripod
    • External flash units
    • Lens filters
    • Light meter
    • Photo editing software
    Also, an extension pole or drone can aid in taking elevated shots.

  • Is it necessary to be licensed to be a real estate photographer?

    Photography isn't regulated by the federal government, so it doesn't require a license. Many real estate photographers have anywhere from a certificate in photography to a bachelor's degree. Experience and a portfolio of high-quality photos is generally enough to qualify for the job.

  • Do sellers or real estate agents pay for real estate photography?

    The real estate agents pay for the photos. The seller acquires the services of a real estate agent to advertise and promote the sale of the property. The agent then compiles an accurate representation of the property in advertisements and promotions through images.

  • How do real estate photographers charge?

    Some photographers base their prices on square footage, and others charge a flat rate and tack on extra for the following:

    • Larger than average properties
    • Number of photos needed
    • Amount of post-processing editing requested
    • Extras, such as twilight shoots, areal photography, and video

  • What are specialty services that a real estate photographer would offer?

    • Virtual staging: Virtual staging is the practice of adding furnishings and decor to empty rooms digitally through photo-editing software programs during post-processing.
    • 3-D tours: A 3-D tour allows a prospective buyer to do a virtual walkthrough of the property while controlling which room they're in and the direction they're looking.
    • 2-D floor plan creation: Some real estate photographers can use software to create a 2-D floor plan for your property.
    • Aerial drone services: Some real estate photographers offer aerial drone photos or video, although, this is typically an additional charge.
    • Real estate videos: A real estate video is a video walkthrough of the home, with or without aerial drone footage.
    • Twilight photos/virtual twilight photos: Twilight, known as the golden hour, blue hour, or magic hour in film and image photography, gives the best lighting for images and videos, mainly because there are no stark shadows. A twilight sky can also be added or enhanced digitally.
    • Marketing flyers: Marketing flyers are color brochures used to promote a listing.
    • Property websites: A property website is dedicated to one listing.
  • How long will a real estate photography session last?

    A real estate photo shoot can take anywhere from one to four hours, depending on the size of the home. The average is around two hours. Photographers charge premiums for twilight photo shoots because they can only do one per day.

  • What is a reasonable timeline to receive final images from the photographer?

    Most real estate photographers promise delivery of photos within 24 hours of the photo shoot but may send them sooner, even the next morning. Rush delivery is considered a premium charge and may not be feasible, depending on the photographer's prior commitments.

  • What is a blue sky guarantee?

    A blue sky guarantee is that at least half of the sky will be blue for exterior shots of the home regardless of the actual color of the sky when the photos are taken. This enhancement isn’t recommended for weather conditions where it would look unnatural to have a blue sky.

  • Is it better to have the home furnished or unfurnished in professional photographs?

    Staging, whether virtual or physical, is an important part of helping prospective buyers envision themselves living in the home, provided that the decor compliments the space. For a photographer that offers virtual staging, you want the home unfurnished with no artwork or drapes, so everything coordinates.

  • What are some tips to prepare a home to be photographed?

    Be sure to clean all surfaces and floors, especially mirrors, so they're pristine and spotless. Mow, landscape, and sweep the outside, and also clean the pool. For physical staging, remove any large items that make the room seem crowded. Open all window coverings to let in natural light.

  • Will the photographer stage the home to be photographed?

    The real estate agent prepares the home to be photographed, which includes staging. However, photographers may include virtual staging in their services. There's usually an additional charge for virtual staging, and it isn't typically part of a basic package.

Find a Top-Ranked Real Estate Photographer Near You

We did the research for you!

  • Licensing
  • User Reviews
  • Mystery Shopping Calls

Learn about our selection process.