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Thread: seeking advice on real estate marketing photography

  1. #1

    seeking advice on real estate marketing photography

    My name is Michael. I live in Columbus, OHIO. My passions include playing traditional acoustic instruments (guitar, mandolin, dobro, mt dulcimer etc) on my church praise team, playing eclectic country/bluegrass/rock music with my friends, writing, dogs, instrument restoration & repair, building 18th century weapons, firearms and other stuff.

    I have been intrigued by photography most of my life. I've never had any instruction so i'm a newby when it comes to the technical aspects. I've always taken tons of photos so I'm fairly intuitive and experienced in composition but am severely limited by my reliance on the automatic setting on my Canon Rebel XTi w/ Tamron18-200mm XR DiII lens. I'm very aware that I'm barely scratching the surface of the capabilities of my camera. At age 56 & having very recently married my long lost high school sweetheart (please bare with me, this is relevant) after a 36 year separation, I'm currently re-inventing myself as a real estate agent.

    Tammie and I love spending all our time together and she is also passionate and gifted picture taker. It's a very long, hard, did I mention LONG road getting a new real estate brand up and running.

    To pay our bills and take advantage of a perceived opportunity as an insider in the industry, My wife and I are preparing to start a photography business. As soon as we roll it out, we'll be hired by other agents to access their listings, take all the marketing photographs and upload them to MLS (multiple listing service). This could be shooting interior and exteriors of houses "as is" or utilizing limited "photo-shoot staging" where we would arrange furniture, curtains, accessories etc for maximum photographic impact. My main photographic goals at this time are to learn my camera while shooting exciting architectural shots. I'm talking about whatever it takes: special lighting, depth of field techniques, editing etc, to make our photographs stand out above the rest of the images on MLS.

    Does anyone have any advise where a beginner could start to produce the best architectural photos?? Any help would be much appreciated.
    Last edited by Dave Humphries; 15th September 2012 at 05:06 PM.

  2. #2
    kdoc856's Avatar
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    Sep 2011
    Columbus, Ohio, USA
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    Re: seeking advice on real estate marketing photography

    Welcome, Mich

    You've come to a good place here. There almost always seems to be someone who knows something about just about anything photographically. Check out It's a subscription site for a very reasonable amount of money that features video tutorials by world-class experts on a huge range of photographic topics, and subscribers have unlimited access. They very recently had several tutorials on shooting the interiors and exteriors of private homes.

    I think your idea is a great one- I've long been impressed at how poor the photography is of actively-marketed homes. Realtors frequently speak of the importance "curb-appeal" for first impressions, yet the first impression is actually a terrible photograph. I wish you the best of luck. I'm a neighbor, BTW, in Powell. Go, Bucks

  3. #3
    Moderator Dave Humphries's Avatar
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    May 2008
    Windsor, Berks, UK
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    Dave Humphries :)

    Re: seeking advice on real estate marketing photography

    Hi Mich,

    Welcome to the CiC forums from me, great to have you here.

    Tammie has obviously energised you, I'm the same age and couldn't envisage doing what you two are

    One thought that crosses my mind reading your last couple of paragraphs (sorry, I split things up a bit to make it less of a 'big block') - in the UK, we have laws so that people are not misled by edited photos into buying/renting something that isn't as good in real life as it was in the pictures. Now I'm not suggesting for a moment that was your intent, but I just don't want you to get carried away "shooting exciting architectural shots" and "make our photographs stand out above the rest of the images on MLS" and go 'too far'.

    It's alright to clone out the high-rise block behind the nice house in a picture for display here, but one that forms even a small part of a commercial transaction has to be truthful - your options may be limited to getting the current owner/tennant to tidy up the house/yard before you shoot.

    It may help if you could post a few examples of 'where you are now' and we could make suggestions for improvement.

    Good luck,

  4. #4
    rtbaum's Avatar
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    Jan 2012
    Albertville, Mn
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    Re: seeking advice on real estate marketing photography

    Definitely, You should bone up on basics of HDR. I have seen some stunning photos using this technique for marketting of homes. You really should post some images on CiC for critique, there is nothing more helpful than well meant critiques to improve your skills.

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