How Important is Real Estate Photography?

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If you’re like most people, you already know that great listing photos can help you sell your home faster – and often for more money. But can you get great shots on your own, or should you leave it to the pros?

Though you may be great at taking photos, real estate listings often need a professional touch. 

5 ways professional photos help you sell your home faster and for more money: 

  1. Professional photos get 61% more online views
  2. Photos are buyers’ first impression of the home  
  3. 87% of buyers rely on photos to make decisions about homes 
  4. Professionally photographed homes sell 32% faster than their counterparts 
  5. Listings that feature professional photos have a higher perceived value 

Here’s a closer look at each. 

#1. Professional Photos Get More Online Views

Professional photos attract attention. Think about how quickly you’re willing to keep scrolling when a picture doesn’t contain something you care about on social media; the same principle applies to buyers who are looking at real estate listing websites.  

#2. Photos Create the First Impression 

According to, about 93% of buyers search online for their home – and that means the first impression is essential. If homebuyers aren’t sold on the images they see online, chances are they will move on. It can also affect their perception of a home prior to seeing it. A good photograph will have a positive emotion associated with the home. It’s simple: Professional photos look better and create a better first impression, so they’re more likely to get your home on a prospective buyer’s “shortlist.” 

Emotion is the No. 1 trigger of buyers, so use it to your advantage. A good photo can speak not a thousand words, but a million words.  

Which photo would make you more interested in purchasing this home? 

#3. 87% of Buyers Rely on Photos 

A stunning 87% of buyers rely mostly on photos to decide whether to tour a home in person. In fact, according to the National Association of REALTORS®, photos are the most valuable part of a real estate listing. According to NAR, here’s what people think of real estate listings: 

  • 87% find photos very useful 
  • 85% read listing descriptions 
  • 46% find virtual tours very useful 
  • 42% feel that an agent’s contact information is useful to them 

#4. Professionally Photographed Homes Sell 32% Faster

Home listings with professional photos sell faster than their counterparts do, and part of that is likely because great photos engage buyers. Visually attractive photos are more likely to entice buyers to schedule tours, and it’s a lot easier to sell a home after making a great first impression online. 

#5. Listings With Professional Photos Have a Higher Perceived Value

Listings with professional photos have a higher perceived value than those with cellphone photos or those shot with a low-quality camera and poor lighting. Expert marketers know this, too – that’s why you see professionally photographed products in online catalogs and food photographed on elegant platters. Potential homebuyers will not be thinking about why they love a photo; they will only know they love it.  

To get the best results, here are some quick tips for creating high-impact photos of your house: 

  • Clear all surfaces of clutter. Two or three objects are fine if they are deliberate. 
  • Clean mirrors, floors, and surfaces. 
  • Furniture should be sized for the space. Oversize pieces can make rooms look cramped. 
  • Balance the furniture and the decor.  


  • Dining Room: Set a stylish table so the viewer feels invited into the space and can imagine having dinner in the room.  
  • Kitchen: Countertops should be cleared of clutter. Strategically placed objects should be minimal, neat, and orderly.  
  • Living and Family Rooms: If needed, remove furniture to create a better flow. Fluff the pillows and open blinds/curtains to allow natural light to fill the space to make the room brighter and appear larger.  
    • Too much contrast can be distracting. The more colors and objects, the more contrast the room will have. On the other hand, low contrast can seem muted or boring. The key is to have the right amount of contrast. It is best to have a few framed pieces of art (not personal photos) on the walls and try to stick to a single-color scheme. 
  • Exterior: Don’t forget to stage the exterior. Mow the lawn, rake leaves, tend gardens, and clean the pool. Add extra props like table settings on an outdoor table or towels by the pool. 
  • High-quality, high-definition photos are essential when selling a home. Good photos will impact the selling price, how quickly it sells or whether it sells at all. The single most important factor in selling a home is good photography. 

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