Questions and Answers
Can you shoot a home with a phone camera?
You can, and sometimes with the right circumstances, your phone will produce an acceptable image, but it will be severely limited in scope and lighting. To shoot an entire home, inside and out, and capture color range, details or special angles requires a robust professional camera with specialized wide-angle lens and expertise in shooting techniques like flash/fusion.
Can you Photoshop out that crack in the wall of my client’s property?
For obvious legal and ethical reasons, I cannot and will not use photography to erase a permanent physical feature of the property, including outside items like a telephone pole. Buyers expect photography of the home and the actual home to match. Misrepresentation is a slippery slope. Your brokerage manager or the local real estate association are excellent sources for guidelines, if you have questions.
Who pays for the real estate photographer?
Typically, the listing agent pays for the photography, but not always. It may depend on the agent’s marketing plan for the property. A seller can always request professional photography as well.
Do I get to choose the photos for processing & finishing?
Unfortunately, no. Due to the high volume of photos I take for each shoot, there’s no efficient way to share and select photos in a timely fashion. However, I am always more than happy to have the client and homeowner follow along to preview the photos on the back of my camera during the actual shoot.
How do I get my photos?
Your photos will be delivered electronically via email in two JPEG formats. The first version is for the MLS and comes as a ZIP file attached to the email. The second version contains high-resolution print size files. Too large to email, you will instead receive a link to an online file storage site. From there you can either download individual photos or a ZIP file of all the photos at one time.
What’s the difference between the MLS and Print Size files?
The MLS files are quite small JPEG files that have been sized specifically to match common MLS standards and compressed to load quickly on the web.
Print-size files are much larger JPEG files that are roughly the same size as the original captured image in the camera. Finished files are always large enough to print extremely well on an 8.5 by 11-inch piece of paper.
Do you upload the photos to the MLS?
I cannot. I am not a licensed Realtor and do not have access to the MLS.
Should I hire a home stager?
While each property’s needs are different, I would always encourage any seller or agent to get a home stager’s opinion and estimate.
How should we prepare the home for the shoot?
At a minimum, the house should look clean and organized. De-cluttering mantles and countertops of personal items go a long way to making a home look open and inviting. Smaller things like removing visible garbage cans can also make the house look cleaner. Bright, artificially colored packaging, like on cereal boxes and shampoo bottles are also very distracting to the eye. Perhaps most important, check to ensure every light fixture in the home turns on with a working light bulb. It can make a huge difference.
The following is a basic guideline to prepare a home for photography:
Turn on all interior lights
De-clutter or organize mantles, shelves and tabletops
Remove or minimize personal photos and memorabilia
Clear off counter tops in kitchen and bathroom areas
Remove photos, notes and papers from the refrigerator
Turn ceiling fans and televisions off
Make all beds and tidy bathrooms
Remove piles of newspaper and magazines
Tuck trash cans out of view in a closet or cupboard
Point out valuable or recognizable artwork that should be edited in post
Contain pets in the garage or out of sight
Remove all vehicles from driveways and from in front of the house
Remove all garden tools including hoses and sprinklers
Mow and rake yard
Move garbage cans out of sight
Sweep driveways, sidewalks and patios