Preparing your property for real estate photography

How do you get ready for a real estate photography shoot?

Most Importantly: Declutter

It makes a huge difference to the appeal of a space.

  • Make sure remote controls are put in draws. 
  • Book shelves are neat and all book spines are facing outward. Magazines are neatly stacked or put out of sight.
  • Remove any paperwork from desks and bench tops.
  • Remove all personal grooming products from bathrooms. Things like soap, tooth brushes, combs, shampoo and conditioner, scrubbing brushes, tissues and toilet paper, hair dryers and shavers. Remove any hanging towels, even if they were put there by the Stylist.
  • Stow away toys and sports gear in the kids’ rooms.
  • Remove all fridge magnets and clear the top and sides of the fridge.
  • A few appliances on the kitchen bench is fine, but if the toaster or kettle are looking a bit tired, put them in a cupboard during the photo shoot. Remove tea towels hanging from oven doors.
  • Remove cars parked in the driveway.
  • Pack away personal pictures from benches and tables.
Cluttered Bedroom


Homes are linked to the people who live there. To get a buyer into the mood to buy your property they need to imagine living there. When the buyer can imagine living in the property the emotional seeds are planted. Emotions sell. If the seller still has their family pictures and memories decorating the walls and shelves the spell is broken. Therefore remove all personal photos.

Fixed Lighting and Lamp Bulbs

Check all lights are working. If any bulbs have blown they will need to be replaced. If possible the bulbs should all be cool white as opposed to warm yellow bulbs. As a rule I turn on all available lights. Bedside lamps are particularly important to have working.


Window need to be clean. The photographer will want to capture the view through the window. Dirty windows will diminish what a real estate photographer can do. The image will suffer if there are dirty windows.

Curtains and Blinds should be open.

Outdoor Spaces

For patios and outdoor areas a nice plant or candles on the outdoor table will enhance the aesthetic. While a bit of a cliché, a bottle of sparkling mineral water with a couple of glasses can help sell the idea of a great space to relax.

The lawns should be mowed, hedges pruned, leaves and lawn trimmings brushed or raked away. Garden tools, bins or unused pots, stowed away.

Remove cars parked in the driveway. Avoid having cars parked in front of the house.

The pool should be clean and free of leaves. If possible the pool cleaner should be removed from the pool. If there is a pool cover it needs to be removed. Deck chairs neatly arranged.

Indoor Spaces

A small indoor plant or flowers (not too big) look great as a centerpiece on the dining table. Likewise a bowl of fruit on the kitchen bench looks good, as does a breadboard or an open cookbook. A plant in the corner of the room is often a nice touch. A good rule to follow is: If in doubt take it out.

Property Styling

Consider having the property styled. A professional stylist will furnish the home and offer advice on the style of furnishings. They typically add the right amount of ornamentation to shelves and tables. A well furnish home looks great in photos. When compared to the selling price of the property the expense of presenting a home is often money well spent.

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