Stage Your Home for the Photos

by Nick Molnar on February 27, 2009

Recently I’ve written about why most Realtors don’t take enough photos, and the importance of an attractive front photo of your house when you go to sell it.

Inside Photos Matter Too

If the front image is the most important, the interior photos are the suporting cast. They need to be appealing, to keep a viewer’s attention and get them to place your house on their list of homes to go and see in person. This can be hard to do in houses that are occupied and full of life’s debris and in homes that are vacant and have white walls.

It’s  always a good idea to consider professionally staging the house you are selling. Since that is sometimes not an option, due to expense or other reasons, I’ve begun to suggest everyone stage homes just for the photos.  Move furniture out of rooms, add art, borrow furniture for empty spaces, buy flowers. However you do it, make your house look good in the photos. It’s often the only chance you have to make people want to see your house. And if they don’t see it you can’t sell it. 

It can take significant effort, but compare the following photos:

They are of bedrooms of about the same size, in homes on the same block, both listed for sale at the same time at similar prices. They even have the same carpet and baseboard and are nearly the same color. There are however, quite a few differences in the photos. How we did it is below, but that doesn’t really matter. What matters is the effect. Which house would you be more likely to go and see?

It Takes Work and Skill to Get Great Photos

In the room photos above, one is staged using an air mattress on top of some cardboard boxes then dressed to appear a proper bed. One was likely taken with a point and shoot 35mm camera while the other used a DSLR camera with a wider angle lens. One is taken from eye level looking down and the other from near the floor, looking up and capturing more of the new carpet in the frame. Additionally, one is an HD image – which is a compilation of seven separate photos taken at different exposures to better balance the brightness of the windows with the darker room, the other doesn’t seem to have been refined with imaging software at all. Have I lost you? Put it this way, there is a lot more time and effort in one of the photos, and it comes through.

We spend time and money to capture great images to sell houses. Here is some of the equipment we used for a recent photo shoot:

We don’t always take two cars of props to a house for photographs, but we do always work to get photos that show off the best features of the home for sale. We always return to a home more than once for photos. The front yard may photograph best in the morning, but the back yard may need to be shot in the afternoon to have the sunlight at its best effect. We may not have a blue sky on our first day of shooting. We may get back to our office with hundreds of photos only to realize the best shot of the kitchen is from a slightly different angle than we captured initially. We think it through and make sure we get the best possible photos because we want your house to sell almost as much as you do.

Want this Kind of Realtor Working for You?

If you don’t need assistance to get great photos, get them in front of buyers and get your house sold, great. But if you don’t have the time, the skill set, or the cameras and software to do it yourself, make sure the people you hire to assist you do the job well. 

If you are in the South Bend – Mishawaka – Granger Area and want this kind of effort put into marketing your home, pick up the phone ( 574-217-4770) or send an e-mail ( We’d be pleased to meet with you and see if we can help you. Here’s more on how we help you sell your house.



{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

Tracy February 28, 2009 at 8:29 am

Wow those inside photos really are different with furniture.


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