How to Make Your Home Picture Perfect On-screen for a Photoshoot

How to Make Your Home Picture Perfect On-screen for a Photoshoot

  • Kelli Ide
  • 03/6/23


How to Make Your Home Picture Perfect On-screen for a Photoshoot

In today’s world where homebuyers are likely to start their search  online, high quality photography is king.

Remember, you never get another chance to make a good first impression. Make sure your online photographs showcase your home in the best way possible so it will stand out against the competition. Preparing your home for a photoshoot may even lead to a faster, or higher, offer.

The very first thing you need to do when you want to make your home picture perfect for a photoshoot is to give it a good deep cleaning. Start off by clearing the clutter and donating or throwing away items you no longer need.

It is a good idea to get a head start on packing by putting out of season or rarely used items in neatly stored boxes stacked up in the basement, garage or, better still, in a storage facility. Your goal is to give your house an airy look. If your house appears cluttered, your buyer may get the idea that you have a storage problem.

When you decide what to display and what to pack away, keep in mind that you want to depersonalize your home. You might love the unique wall hanging you found on your latest trip, but you want prospective buyers to imagine themselves living in the space. Don’t risk turning off buyers with overly personal objects like religious items and family photos.

Now that you have depersonalized and tossed the things you don’t need, wash the windows, clean the floors and make the furniture sparkle. And don’t forget about the exterior. You might want to remove dead shrubs, get a new mailbox and paint the front door.

Now comes the hard part – staging your home for sale. Before we jump in, strongly consider hiring a home staging professional to do the job right. As a certified staging design agent, I can offer this service exclusively to my personal clients.

So what is staging?

Staging your home for a photoshoot is not the same thing as decorating. You stage your home for buyers, and you decorate your home for yourself. When you stage your home, you are showing potential buyers what it would be like for them to live there. On the other hand, decorating reflects your own personal taste and enhances the visual appearance of your home for you and your family to enjoy.

Many professional staging experts will tell you to follow some basic tips for staging. You can have a neutral color palette with touches of colors that reflect the setting of your home.

As for your furniture, you may decide to remove some pieces that make your home seem crowded and cramped and put them in storage to create an open look. On the other hand, you may want to replace dated and worn pieces like an overused upholstered sofa with a new one for a fresh look.

The key is to create little physical vignettes throughout your home to tell the story of what it will be like to live there. Vignette staging encourages engagement on the part of the buyer, and you are suggesting how the space in your home can be used. You want your potential homebuyer to form an emotional connection to your home.

To create multiple vignettes, start off with small spaces. A corner of the living room with two wing chairs and a table in between with teacups on a small tray suggests a seating area where you can have a conversation. A spare room with a loveseat, a desk and a laptop suggests that it can be used as a home office.

Now that your house is decluttered, depersonalized and deep cleaned, it’s time to pay attention to details that make for good photography during the photoshoot. If you are lucky enough to have a distinctive architectural detail like a fireplace or a large bay window, position groupings with odd numbers of three, five and seven nearby to draw the eye.

Lighting can greatly enhance the mood of your photograph. Play around with the lighting in the room so you can show off its best features by leaving some blinds and curtains open and closing others. If you don’t have a lot of natural light, keep the lamps and overhead lights on. You will want to avoid shots that make the outside appear brighter than the inside so the house looks dark.

A professional tip is to take the same photograph at various times of the day to capture the best shot with the best lighting. Pros refer to visual square footage, which means creating the illusion of more space with light. Take your pictures from an angle to show the full size of the room and its natural highlights. Make sure to include flooring in the shot.

Kelli Ide is a professional home stager and experienced real estate agent in the Finger Lakes region of New York who can help you make your home picture perfect onscreen for a photoshoot. When you prepare your home you can expect amazing online listing photos that can persuade homebuyers to come to see your home in person, instead of skipping past to the next online listing.

Kelli Ide offers a unique, concierge-style approach to real estate, including staging, photo styling and market preparation services exclusively for clients to give them an edge over the competition. For further information about buying or selling a home in the Finger Lakes, visit








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