Getting started with property photography
Having great photos showing off your holiday accommodation is essential in todays increasingly competitive holiday letting market, help potential guests visualise exactly what it would be like to stay in your property with high quality photos - In this blog we are sharing the photography tips and tricks we use when photographing new properties getting added to our portfolio of self catered accommodation in Cornwall. Here are 5 things you must do before you start snapping away!
✓Clean - This should go without saying but the property needs to be spotless, grubby paintwork, mould spots, stains on carpets, smudges on mirrors all need to be taken care of before anything else
✓ De-clutter - Remove any personal items or clutter that may distract potential guests looking at your holiday home
✓ Straighten everything - Picture frames, furniture, blinds and curtains all need to look perfectly straight and symmetrical
✓ Turn on the lights - This creates a feeling of warmth and avoids dark spots in any of the rooms
✓ Checklist - Its good practice to plan ahead so you know what photos you need to get, for example 2 main shots of the room, one of the view from the window (must be a great view) one close up per room - for example, artwork, ornaments ,house plants. one shot of the main feature in the room - for example exposed granite wall, log burner, free standing bath, etc ...
Photography guide for the kitchen
When preparing for holiday home photography we usually start in the hub of the house, the kitchen!
✓ Staging with props such as food can help guests imagine what it would be like to sit down for a family meal at your property
✓ Put away all cleaning products and hide the rubber gloves
✓ If you leave a hamper set one out and show it off
✓ less is more, de clutter the worktops and only keep the essentials
✓ Have useful appliances that guests would like to use on show such as coffee machines, wine fridges, blenders etc
✓ Move around the kitchen shooting from all corners and don't be afraid to get close ups
✓ Put away tea towels or oven gloves, these can obscure the clean lines of kitchen units
✓ Watch out for reflections in shiny surfaces like work tops or fridge doors
Photography guide for the dining room
✓ Straighten out the table and chairs perfectly
✓ Set the table, it doesn't necessarily have to be with food but cutlery or a vase of flowers will help set the scene
✓ Make sure you have a table big enough to sit your maximum occupancy or show all of the seating arrangements for the guests
✓ If there is patio doors leading outside, show them open and if there is a really nice view from them show that in the next shot
✓ Make sure any artwork on the walls has been straightened, if its from a well known or local artist get a close up shot
✓ If the next room is visible from the dining room, show the connecting spaces so guests feel like they understand the layout of the property
Photography guide for the lounge
✓ Plump cushions and set out sofa throws in a causal yet inviting way
✓ If you have a log burner? light a fire! show off your features as much as you can
✓ If you have a smart TV with streaming services such as Netflix pause the screen and show it or leave the screen on an attractive background.
✓ Set the coffee table with book or magazine and a cup of coffee....or tea!
✓ Make sure the floors are clear, rugs are flat and running perfectly straight with the furniture
✓ Don't be afraid to move furniture around if things aren't looking quite right
✓ Take photos from inside the doorway to get a wider picture of the room
Photography guide for the bathroom
✓ Leave the toilet seat down! Nobody wants to see the insides of a toilet
✓ Put any cleaning products away to declutter the floors or worktops
✓ Make sure it is sparkling clean
✓If you leave toiletries for your guests leave some on show, keeping in mind you may change your mind about leaving toiletries in the future.
✓ If you have a feature bath, make sure its filled up with bubbles and looks inviting
✓ Any towels left for your guests make sure they are folded straight
✓ Don't take to many pictures unless the bathroom is a big feature of the house
✓ Clean any water spots on taps or shower screens, it must be spotless. Same goes for the mirrors!
✓ Small decorations look great for example, house plants, candles, tasteful ornaments
Photography guide for the bedroom
✓ Plump up any pillows and make it look comfortable
✓ Make the beds neatly (iron the sheets if necessary) and try dressing them with cushions or throws
✓ Lay towels on the bed exactly how they will be one the day the guests arrive
✓ Small props for staging could include, coffee, tea or a book on the bedside drawers
✓ Turn on any lamps to for a warm feel
✓ Make sure any mirrors are smudge free and spotless
✓ Don't forget about close ups of features or design elements of the room
Photography guide for the outside areas
✓ The best time to shoot the exterior is 1 hour after sunrise or 1 hour before sunset also known as the 'golden hour'
✓ The best time of year to photograph the garden is spring or summer time when there are splashes of colour from new flowers
✓ If your property has a large driveway or a tight parking space, guests will want to be able to see the parking arrangements (Include exact measurements in your listing if the spaces are small)
✓ Cut the grass and trim the hedges, sweep up any leaves
✓ Arrange any garden furniture available for the guests to use including BBQ's, parasol's etc
✓ Show any toys or play areas for kids or pets
✓ Watch out for glare from the sun
✓ Get close ups of any flowers that are in your garden
✓ If you are luck enough to have a hot tub, turn it on with any jets or lights it has
Photography guide for the features
Get close ups of all the property features even if they are small touches, it will give guests a the feel of your property, for example:
✓ Log burners
✓ Aerial photo of great location
✓ Amazing views
✓ Large parking areas
✓ Hot tubs
Final checks and editing
✓ Check through your photos making sure non are blurry
✓ Did you get all the photos you needed from your checklist?
✓Delete any photos that don't give a true representation of the size, design or feel of your property. Giving the wrong impression can lead to unhappy guests and bad reviews.
5 quick tips for using editing software:
✓ Adjust white balance from lights creating orange yellow glow
✓ Bring up the shadows and lower the highlights
✓ Straighten the frame, doors or windows need to look vertical and level
✓ Add some saturation and vibrance but you must keep it natural!
✓ Use preset filters with caution , to much editing can actually put guests off, keep it 'light and bright'
We use Adobe Lightroom for all our photo editing
Holiday letting with Porth Holidays
The thing to remember with holiday home photography is to capture as best you can the feel of the property and what it would be like to stay there - These photos need to grab your guests attention quickly so arranging them in a thought out way can help a lot when potential guests are scrolling through multiple property listings searching for there perfect Cornish getaway!
We help owners that join us set up their properties ready for holiday letting with free photography, guest folder, and no on-boarding or membership fees... actually no fees at all until we get you a booking! We can also provide a comprehensive management service with a tailored housekeeping package, including full changeover and cleaning, hampers for guests and pups, holiday essentials pack, luxury linen and towels, arranging waste removal, fire alarm safety checks and more. We can also help with photography for property owner's looking to advertise their holiday accommodation with us, just get in touch!
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