Preparing Your Home to be Photographed

In today’s digital world, homebuyers generally start their search online. The following suggestions are made to help make the first impressions really count when your home is listed by you or by your broker. My job is to create images of your house that reflect the uniqueness of the property and attract interested buyers to come to see the house in person! The preparation you do will have a direct effect on allowing the images to best represent your house to potential buyers. I hope you find these guidelines helpful.

General Guidelines

Be sure to clean your whole house from top to bottom 

Turn on all the lights just before the photo shoot. Be sure to replace burned out light bulbs. If you have decorative lights to highlight art work, bookcases, etc. be sure to have them on as well 

Turn off ceiling fans, TVs, computer screens 

Open blinds and window treatments in order to maximize outside light 

Be sure the windows are clean, especially first floor windows 

It is suggested that you remove personal photographs 

Make all beds and place all shoes and jackets in closets 

If you have pets, it is helpful to have them out of the way during the photo shoot. Put away pet food and water bowls as well as pet toys 

Preparing the Exterior of the House 

Close garage doors and be sure to remove cars from the driveway as well as the front of the house 

Clean the yard and have it looking as nice as possible 

Remove “clutter” ie. empty planters, toys, sports equipment, trash barrels, visible water hoses, etc. 

Sweep the driveway and walkways 

If you have umbrellas on the patio, open them up 

Wipe down outdoor furniture and have cushions look clean ?Preparing the Interior of the House

Kitchen Area

Clear the countertops including any center islands 

Clear the outside of the refrigerator of magnets, photos, calendars, etc. 

Clear the sink of any dishes 

Hide garbage cans 

If you have a breakfast nook or dining area in the kitchen, feature a centerpiece such as a bouquet of flowers. You might also actually set the table with a place setting appropriate for the table. 

Remove child seats and booster chairs

Dining Room 

Clear the table, dust and polish the table top 

Have an appropriate centerpiece for the table 

Consider setting the table as you would for hosting a dinner for family and friends 

Remove child seats and booster chairs 

Living Room and Family Room 

“De-Clutter” - Remove stacks of magazines, papers, mail, kid’s toys, etc. 

Simplify the fireplace mantel so that is it not overwhelmed with items 

Clean the interior of the fireplace. Depending on the season, consider having a nice fire going 

Check to see where the cables, extension cords are visible and straighten them out as much as possible 

Fluff and arrange the furniture pillows 


Be sure that all beds are made and that items visible under the beds are removed 

De-clutter dressers, night stands and other furniture tops 

Store away any cables (ie phone charger cables) and simplify what is on the nightstand 

Recommend that you remove all personal items 

Use a nice bedspread and attractive pillows 

Open the shades and blinds to allow as much light into the room as possible 


Clear the countertops- no toothpaste, toothbrushes, razors, medications, deodorants, soap bars, etc 

Toilet seats DOWN 

Leave out unused towels and remove all used towels 

Be sure that the mirrors are clean