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Looking to learn how to shoot your own real estate photos? It’s no secret real estate agents and property managers are always looking to save money and get an edge over the competition. In today’s blog, we will cover the important aspects you’ll need to effectively get professional style property photos from beginning to end. If you’re new to real estate, (maybe you’re a new agent) and have never shot a property before, this article will assist in teaching you some easy to use, easy to comprehend tips and pointers. 

We will not only tell you how to take a perfect shot, we will suggest and recommend the proper equipment to use, settings, prep needed and all those little tips and tricks that give the professionals that important special pro-look. You can do it too!

#1 – What Camera And Photo Gear To Buy



It can be a little overwhelming to take your own great real estate property photos. There are so many options out there on the market, especially if you’re new to this. Finding the camera that best fits your needs can be frustrating (all the directions and manuals and info where do I start?).

This tutorial will start with the highest level of camera and then address how to get great photos with a cell phone camera. That’s right! You can get a great shot using a cell phone camera. If you’re going to get good at this or make an effort to shoot your team’s photos or your own real estate photos and want to buy a great camera, we find that the Nikon D7500 is top notch. The price is around $1000 – $1200 USD and it’s a wonderful option for property photographers. This camera allows for bracketing. We will discuss bracketing further below. 


We advise using the Nikon 10-24mm lens (aka a fish-eye lens) in tandem with the D7500 Camera. It’s an investment but it’s well built and will get the job done at peak professional performance. This lens will capture the most fantastic wide angle shots. When shooting real estate it’s all about the space and the angles in the frame. Remember to not shoot too wide or images in the frame may get improperly distorted. It’s called lens bowing. Our Lotus 3D Staging Image Enhancement service actually fixes lens bowing and color corrects if errors occur which is a nice backup. We have a lot of clients who shoot cell phone photos and simply send us the photos to straighten the angles and color-correct/brighten, turning the photo immediately into a pro looking photo (without spending the camera costs for the Nikon).


Now you have your Nikon D7500 camera and the 10-14mm lens, what about lighting? The NIkon SB-5000 flash will compliment the camera package, give you accurate lighting with proper color. 


We can’t impress upon people enough how important it is to have good lines. A tripod is the best tool and it’s worth it to take the time to set up a tripod. The Manfrotto tripod is top of the line. 

We recommend setting the tripod 4’ to 5’ feet off the ground in height to get the best photo. 


If the Nikon package is not in your budget or is not your preference, let’s take a moment to talk about using a cell phone to shoot real estate. It’s definitely possible to get great shots using a cell phone. Always make sure that your photos are in focus and at least 1MB – 5MB in size when you are sending the jpeg photograph to the virtual stager. If the photos are too small or too blurry then they will not work. Once you get down it’s easy. 

#2 – Camera Settings To Use – Nikon


With so many different settings that can be applied, we’ll focus on what we know to be the best practice and best practical camera settings for real estate photography. The camera setting we suggest is to set your ISO to 100 and set your Aperture to f8. This allows you to capture the best overall image quality. Giving you a crisp, high quality look each time. 


See time stamp 1:57 min into this video. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lh8pe-no7YM

How to set up auto bracketing. 

Bracketing is what gives photos that professional look. It really takes the photo to the next level. Understanding bracketing can be tough for some to digest. To make it simple, here’s the gist. Bracketing is usually 5 photos taken at different apertures. For example, you set your camera to auto bracketing and the camera will take 5 photos of the same room automatically. Since you have the auto bracketing on, you will get 5 different versions of the photo with different lighting. Then when you put them all together they make a wonderful crisp perfect image with all 5 images blended together. It’s a high level method. Although bracketing is great. It is not necessary to get quality photos that will sell properties effectively. 

#3 – How to Prepare for Photography

Preparing a property for photography is an important step that some people overlook. If you prepare properly you can become a pro at taking your own photos. That way you’ll use virtual services wisely, avoid expensive professional photographer fees and do away with those uber expensive traditional staging costs. Here are some tips to prep for property photography. 

  1. Remove Clutter: Virtual Object or Item Removal is possible however if you can clear a room of unwanted items the better it will be. Clear spray bottles, boxes, garbage, clothes, toys etc.
  2. Straighten blinds or faucets to be even and neat. 
  3. Fix blankets pillows and bedspreads to be nice and tidy
  4. Opening doors and turning on lights will give your image a more spacious vibe. Turn on all the lights (even the smaller ones). Open curtains and open doors. 

#4.) How to Shoot Property Properly

The key to shooting real estate photography is to shoot efficiently and swiftly. Start in one room and then move around the space shooting a number of angles for each room. If you can’t shoot a cramped bathroom try using a wider angle. Remember to shoot the rooms at 4’5-5’ camera height. Many people forget this step. If you take a lot of photos and take them from the right angle and with good lighting then you’ll get better at shooting your own photos. What you don’t want is to have to go back to reshoot, so these tips are handy and will help you. If you are shooting an exterior, try using some foliage in the foreground slightly, giving the image some balance. 

#5.)  How To Get Your Photos Edited at Lotus 3D Staging

We offer 6 services, all catering to your property photos. If you’re new to using virtual services give us a call and we’ll walk you through it. If you practice the listed tips and tricks you’re on your way. Remember to label and title your photos so you can easily find them on your computer or digital device. We invite you to contact us and tell us about any unique needs you may have.

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Lotus 3D Staging Virtual Staging for Real Estate

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Lotus 3D Staging 

Virtual Staging & Photo Editing Services