Suggestions Before a Real Estate Photo Shoot

 What Should We Do to Prepare the Home for the Photoshoot?

  • At a minimum, the house should look clean and organized.
  • Decluttering countertops go along way in making a home look open and inviting.
  • Smaller things, such as removing visible garbage cans, can also make the house look cleaner.
Perhaps most important, check to ensure every light fixture in the home turns on. Please also ensure light fixtures have the same colour temperature.


  • Park vehicles away from the house or in the garage.
  • Freshen up landscaping.
  • Remove trash, branches, leaves, etc.
  • Remove dead plants, trees, etc.
  • Sweep outdoor space and walkways.
  • Remove visible foliage from the roof and gutters.
  • Spread fresh mulch.
  • Remove debris, hose, and toys from the pool.
  • Store outdoor trash and recycling bins - it is best to place them in a garage area in an outside shed for the photoshoot.
  • Store garden hoses and caddy.
  • Store outdoor tools, equipment, and so on.
  • Store toys, bikes, etc.
  • Store BBQ and accessories or clean it.
  • Wash windows and glass doors.
  • Clean outdoor furniture.
  • Place pillows, umbrellas, etc., on outdoor furniture.
  • Straighten outdoor furniture.
  • Store seasonal decor.
  • Mow the grass, rake up leaves, pull weeds, and remove any dead vegetation.


One of the most common questions we receive as professional property photographers is, “Are the interior lights supposed to be left on or turned off?” And our answer to that is: Yes, no, and maybe. So:

Lights on, please. Artificial lighting will skew the colors for the home to yellow or blue. Natural outside light is the best. In rooms with no windows, the photographer will adjust the lighting accordingly.

 Window Shades Shutters and Blinds:

  1. Horizontal blinds and shutters - it is best to keep horizontal blinds down. However, open the blades in a flat position to see the exterior. The exception is when you do not want to see outside the window (side of a house when a neighbor's house is visible.) In those cases, turn the shutter blades up a little.

  2. Vertical blinds - usually look best fully open. The most important thing is that any wall with multiple window coverings is adjusted all the same.

  • Clear all countertops and remove clutter.
  • Depersonalize home with photos, names, etc.
  • Turn off fans; store portable fans.
  • Clean mirrors and windows.
  • Vacuum carpets and polish floors.
  • Store wastebaskets in laundry baskets out of sight.
  • Store pet dishes, toys, beds, etc.
  • Turn off televisions, computers, and dust screens.
  • Display attractive books, magazines, etc.
  • Store remote controls and chargers.
  • Straighten furniture.
  • Hide electrical cords and cables.
  • Store toys and video games.
  • Store seasonal decor.
  • Remove rugs and runners in kitchens, entryways, and bathrooms so that the floor can be seen clearly.
  • Remove excess furnishings and knick-knacks from rooms.


  • Remove dirty dishes, food, etc.
  • Store food.
  • Clear counters of clutter and small appliances.
  • Remove refrigerator magnets, photos, etc.
  • Clean surfaces and appliances.
  • Hide soaps, towels, cleaning items, etc.
  • Store draining racks.
  • Organize open shelves.
  • Sweep and mop kitchen floor and rug.


  • Minimize photos and personal items.
  • Organize bookshelves.
  • Minimize knick-knacks.
  • Set tables with simple place settings.
  • Remove excess furniture and accessories.


  • Make the beds correctly and remove wrinkles.
  • Arrange decorative pillows.
  • Store clothing and shoes.
  • Remove items underneath the bed if they can be seen.
  • Remove all clutter.
  • Tidy master closets.
  • Declutter and depersonalize bedside tables.
  • Organize children’s rooms and remove clutter.
  • Remove laundry and stow hampers.


  • Close toilet lids.
  • Remove countertop items.
  • Remove bath and shower items.
  • Store toilet brushes, plungers, and wastebaskets.
  • Store towels.
  • Store soaps and candles.
  • Ensure their cleanliness.
  • Get rid of dirt off the bottom and remove debris floating on top.
  • Remove the cover, floating chlorine dispenser, pool sweep, and pool toys.
  • Straighten lounge chairs, stow cleaning tools, and set up your patio umbrella if you have one.
  • Turn on pool light(s), spa bubbles, and waterfalls.

Typical Photo Shoot List (in order)

  • 3 or 4 Photos in front of the property
  • 2 Photos Entrance
  • 4 Photos Living room
  • 2 Photos Dining room
  • 4 Photos Kitchen
  • 1 Photo Hallway bathroom
  • 3 Photos Master bedroom
  • 2 Photos Master bathroom
  • 1 All other Bedrooms
  • 1 Hallway Bathroom
  • 4 Photos of the backyard

We do not photograph inside unfinished areas including inside the garage or storage sheds unless requested by the real estate agent.

How Long Will it Take to Photograph a Property?

The amount of time it takes to do real estate photography, whether it is a home or a commercial building, varies. Moreover, the number one most important factor is the property’s size. Generally, prepare for about an hour. Nevertheless, expect longer hours, especially for larger buildings, homes, or properties.

How Long Will it Take to Videography a Property?

As with photography, videography time will depended on the size of the home and the features. Typically please prepare for for about an hour.

Be Prepared to Reschedule

Photographers work around the weather because it has such a substantial impact on the final marketing materials for the home. It is not possible to fly drones, take photos, and get footage if it is raining and windy.

Be prepared to reschedule your photo shoot if the weather is terrible.

Be Prepared to Leave for up to 2 hours.

We use imaging technology that will photo every part of the home and yard. If you have pets or little ones running through the house during a photo shoot, they are likely to be in the photos or videos.

Please give the photographer a non-occupied space to work with. This will help the photographer move faster and create better work for you by not getting distracted while working.

Even if people just shuffling from room to room to "stay out of the way," it is very distracting, and sometimes you will show up in the photos. You will get the most out of the marketing process if the home is unoccupied.

When your professional photographer or videographer is finished, they will usually message the Realtor to let them know that they are done.