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5 Tips for Better Real Estate Photography

March 19 2012

Want to move more listings – rentals or properties for sale? Consider improving the quality of the photographs you post online. The folks at RentJuice have made a science of effective online rental marketing – and they’ve created a whitepaper that shares secrets for better photography. You can download the full whitepaper at, but we’ll share a few of the top tips here.


1) Invest in a quality camera.
Grainy, poor-quality photos do not make a good impression. If you want your photos to put a listing’s best face forward, it’s probably a good idea to invest in a quality camera that takes higher resolution photos.


RentJuice recommends avoiding “point-and-shoot” cameras. These are compact digital cameras that use automatic settings for quick pics. Instead, aim for a mid-level camera or higher; you can expect to spend between $200 and $400.


A few other tips:

  • Buy a tripod.
  • Use a wide-angle lens.
  • Purchase an on-camera flash (don't use the flash that comes with the camera).


2) Refine your shots with photo editing software.
Buying a quality camera will help you begin with a decent image. However, RentJuice recommends taking this a step further and getting familiar with photo editing software. Watch out, though, you don’t want to “manipulate the property.” The photo editing software is intended to refine the quality of the image – not fix problems with the property itself (i.e. a hole in the wall or some other blemish).  When you’re finished editing your photos, they should still accurately depict what potential renters or buyers will see in person.


Most people find that full Photoshop software has a steep learning curve. Instead, choose software that’s easy to pick up. RentJuice suggest simpler software such as Snipshot, Pixelmator, or Photoshop Elements. Although these options are less expensive, they provide ample functionality for the minor touch-ups you’ll be making.


3) Stage the property effectively.
The property in your photos should look clean and comfortable. The last impression you want to make is of a property that is trashed by the last residents. While including furniture in an image can help people imagine themselves in a space, you want to be sure that the decoration is minimal. Remove clutter such as fridge magnets and stacks of mail on countertops.


4) Use strategic lighting.
The best time to take pictures? The “golden hour” – that magic spot when the sun is close to the horizon. RentJuice explains that “This reduces the harshness of shadows and reduces bright highlights, making the scene look warm and natural.”


5) Photograph the areas that renters/buyers care about.
Take photos of the most important interior rooms:

  •  The kitchen/dining room
  •  The master bedroom/bathroom
  •  The living room

You might also want to include images of the secondary bedrooms, office, den, etc. Hallways and garages are not a “must.” Nor are the details (such as faucets and shelving).

These are only some of the tips found in the RentJuice whitepaper. For the full scoop, download the whitepaper at


About RentJuice
RentJuice is a rental marketing platform. It provides brokers and property managers with the tools they need to find tenants and sign them to leases as quickly as possible. The company is growing by leaps in bounds – announcing recently that they have hit over a million listings and officially launched in San Francisco.


To learn more, you can visit