Useful Real Estate Photography Tips For Amateurs

Read this article which gives some useful tips on how to build a successful Career in the real estate photography business.

If you are going to start your real estate photography business in the USA successfully, you should know some basic tips to avoid the mistakes every amateur photographer makes.

Set a reasonable price

Now, any reader makes wonder "how much do real estate photographers make?" What price lists they offer? All prices differ due to the technical level each real estate photographer has, and the city he/she is from. The larger the city, the higher the prices. For example, the commercial real estate photography pricing is thought to be the highest paid job in the USA among all professional photography types the reports of the United States Department of Labor claims. Top specialists can earn between $40,000 and $100,000 per year photographing and selling exclusive images of the commercial real estate (exterior and interior photos). There are high-ranked photographers which give lectures, maintain blogs and print their own articles and books. Thanks for this additional work they get a bigger income.

Choose a type of real estate photography

At first glance, there is nothing complicated in photographing the property, whether it's an object of architecture, a café's hall, a hotel room or an interior of a residential apartment. To run a real estate photography business competently and benefit from it, the beginners should find the style they will use and are ready to follow.

Type 1. Residential

This genre specializes in taking photos of luxurious apartments, cozy houses away from the city, modern lofts, rentals, small town-homes, big single-family houses or very expensive buildings. Usually, the agencies and other customers pay about $100-400 for 1 photoshoot in this genre.

Type 2. Commercial

As for pictures of commercial premises, fashionable restaurants, music cafes, hotels, etc., photographers need to learn how to make 3D tours. For these services, restaurant and hotel owners pay more because they are more popular and demanded among potential clients. On the average, the photographer receives up to $300 for one perfect image.

Type 3. Architectural

If photographers decide in favour of architectural photography, then it is nice to have a drone to get images from different angles, heights, and a top view. Because this type of photography implies a photoshoot of the building's composition, so photographers can sell their works to companies with stock photos, different magazines and photography editions, and realtors. Most of the architectural objects contain small details, such as ornate windows with beautiful fastenings and decorative cornices, which are very interesting to photograph.

Kindly note that in almost all cases it is necessary to ask permission to photograph an object.
Every real estate photographer decides for himself/herself in which style to photograph, and which photos should be placed in the portfolio. But the most important thing to remember is image photo editing, where real estate photo editing services like FixThePhoto app will help.

Buy professional equipment

The right camera. Professionals prefer the company Canon, Nikon, Panasonic. Any wide-angle camera is suitable; the key thing is the settings for real estate photography you should apply, namely ISO should not exceed 400 and aperture should be from F/8 to F/11, shutter speed is about 1/60. Remember that RAW is the best photo file format.

Tripod. How to take real estate photos without a tripod? With its help, photographers can get crisp images in low light. Manfrotto tripod will cope with any task.

Not expensive real estate photography lens.A universal lens for building photography does not exist: here you can use the entire range of focal lengths. It is desirable to have several lenses of different sizes in your arsenal; the best is 10-20 mm with wide-angle brands such as Nikon, Sigma and Canon.
Do Lighting for real estate photography play an important role? Natural light, artificial indoor lights, additional flashes and even strobes can be used if there is not enough light in the room. All professionals advise making maximum use of natural light.

Bright side light allows you to focus on the relief and texture of the decorative elements of the object. Therefore, at the overcast day, it is difficult to work with the scenery.

A photo bag in which you need to put an additional memory card, as well as other photo accessories, such as batteries and charging batteries, polarizing filters (such things will help you enhance color saturation and reduce reflections), drone (if it is available) and other devices. Some photographers take a small step ladder to adjust a comfortable height or put their hands on it to avoid the blurry photos.
Software for photo editing. You can gain time if you resort to outsourcing real estate photo editing, in other circumstances, Photoshop program and Lightroom with its presets and actions will make editing well.

Real estate photography tips & tricks

1. Clean up your location

When preparing a room for a photo session, remove all unnecessary objects (clothing, food, extra tableware and other personal things), wipe all surfaces (mirrors, glasses). You can leave books to create a composition and neutral accessories that make the interior more comfortable (for example, complement the interior with a vase of flowers).

2. Photograph during daylight hours

The ideal time for photographing real estate is a fine day or morning when the apartment is filled with sunlight. In photos taken in natural light, the interior looks calmer and nobler, and even the farthest corners are clearly visible. Also, it concerns exteriors photography. But you can take few versions of the house, in the morning and in the late afternoon sunlight.

Minus of the evening photo shoot is a characteristic yellowness from electric lamps in the photo. If the window is gloomy outside, try to highlight the room with different sources of real estate photography lighting and make sure that no part of the room "falls down" into the darkness. Pay special attention to the glossy surfaces, they can strongly blink and spoil the frame.

Experiment with different types of lightning, play with curtains and catch the finest photo.
Sometimes an interior photo can be brightened up by adding the impression of impinging light in real estate photo editing software. It comes to hand especially if the room is large and dark, and the windows are small. Light is obtained in the form of rays.

3. Choose good angles

There is no secret in techniques how to shoot real estate photos because a photographer has to find out from which angle and side the interior/exterior looks the most expressive. Whatever real estate photography tricks you have chosen, keep the camera straight: vertical lines should remain vertical.

4. Meet the "rule of thirds" and symmetry

All real estate photographers should use these techniques without hesitation. Your main assistant is symmetry. Try to choose a camera angle so that the interior looks symmetrical, such pictures look more accurate. Secondly, divide the frame into three equal parts horizontally and vertically and place the main lines along these landmarks. On some cameras, you can turn on the grid and focus on real lines, not on your imagination.

5. Try these real estate photo editing tips

Photographers have to edit the obtained images to improve its quality, add brightness or hide unwanted objects. If making photographs for real estate takes a lot of time and energy, you can always refer to photo editing service, where professionals will perform all necessary adjustment and enhancement. Usually, it includes a general improvement in the quality of photography, adding light and color accents, removing unnecessary elements (wires, sockets, odd items, etc.), HDR editing, etc. Play around with adjustments in Photoshop or download set of Lightroom presets or Photoshop actions, which will make the automatic editing. Use can try FixThePhoto Lightroom presets bundles, and enhance your property photos.

This photography option is the best for photo editing. Try to photograph the building or interior in HDR mode or apply this technique to photo enhancement. Experiment with cropping the photo, getting rid of unwanted details and focusing on the main things in the frame.

6. Real estate photography options

Take images in the RAW format to keep the source code as flexible as possible; we are not sports photographers, making a stream of pictures, where JPEG format is much more appropriate. Tune a single white balance setting for the entire series of your real estate photos. Keep a low ISO level. When taking black and white photos, professionals recommend using filters. For example, the blue color filter emphasizes the contrast of the building's drawings in the yellow-white colors.

Another point that can be added to the saving box of a photographer is real estate photography certification. Beginners can enter career development course or sign up for classes to known photographer or service in this sphere to add new competencies to their portfolio.


Business marketing
The portfolio, the service list and real estate photographer prices should be accurately designed and launched on the personal website. Take care of the website, managing accounts in social networks and actively communicating with customers, set affordable real estate photography rates and always stay within the bounds of the law. When it comes to law a photographer can offer their clients a contract or at least give the warning about the order cancellation and fees which can be followed.

Hope, you found these real estate photography tips useful and informative. If you have questions or want to share your experience, please, leave your feedback in comments.



Guest Author: Andrew Philips21 Mar 2019

Thanks for sharing those amazing tips on real estate photography. I like all the images...

Guest Author: Matthew29 Sep 2023

I'm a real estate photographer. My job is not just taking photos and then sending them to clients. I have to edit them carefully to make sure they appear with the best quality. But I do not do it myself, it takes a lot of time. I'll have a great real estate photo editing team BeatColor to support the rest. That's how I can satisfy my clients ^^

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