Photography around the House

Photography around the HouseSelling a house is something I hope I never have to go through. I already get enough of a headache from taking pictures for others with their own homes to sell. It’s an important part of the process to be sure, and I do well at it too, but that doesn’t mean it’s a job without some nonsense. I think it could be so stressful because the people selling the homes are stressing themselves, trying to find a buyer for their building in a market which is sometimes good, sometimes bad. I keep doing it because the pay is good, but it occurs to me that some of my clients could have taken their own pictures just as well.

Now I’m not selling myself short here. I know the value of a skilled photographer, being one who sells those same skills all the time myself. But just consider the average home for a moment. You’ve got a building with a single floor, a bathroom, a kitchen, a couple bedrooms, maybe a living room or a dining room, and that’s it. You might have a basement if you live in a place prone to tornados or get it installed specially. You might have an attic for storage space. We’re talking about fewer than a dozen rooms in total, along with some shots from the exterior of the home.

Even taking several pictures for each of these rooms along with the four sides of the home from the exterior, it only takes a couple hours to get all the pictures I need. Unless of course there are extras, like a pool or outdoor fish pond or giant aquarium with canister filter (yes, I had experience to see that!), any unique features that would really make the home stand out and attract more attention from the market. These should almost always be photographed and worked into the advertisement for the home in some way.

While it’s true that practically anyone could take these pictures, I don’t just take pictures. After sorting through the rough shots and selecting their favorite for each room and angle, I go through each client’s selections and touch up all of the photos they’ve chosen. This way they get to see all the work up front and pick the images they like the best, and I get to improve the contrast, work out any artifacts or lens flares, even out the toning and otherwise make those selections into professional quality work. That’s the part people actually pay me for, I think.

I still maintain that not every job like this which I’ve done necessarily needed me to do it. I’d feel bad if it made up a larger part of my income but since I don’t take pictures of homes for sale too often, I try not to worry about it very much. Also, it’s a lot easier than some of the other photography I’ve done – like nature shots and trying to catch animals right at the moment they decide to finally do something. That’s the kind of work that makes me stressful.