Are you planning to shoot luxury real estate photography and want a complete guide on how to best do that? Then, you’ve come to the right place! 

As a real estate photographer, your expertise lies in capturing stunning visuals of luxurious interiors and exteriors. Whether it’s hotels, cafes, restaurants, mansions, or other elite buildings, your pictures are not only destined for magazines but also to serve real estate agencies.

To deliver high-quality and captivating visuals that truly showcase a property’s essence, you need to dive deep into the intricacies of this genre. 

In this guide, we’ll dive deeper into the exciting world of luxury real estate photography and provide you with 15 actionable tips for shooting high-end properties.

Let’s get started!

Top 15 Luxury Real Estate Photography Tips 

Real estate photography is a genre that’s often overlooked by photographers. However, this works in your favor. 

With fewer competitors in the field, you have the opportunity to generate more revenue and establish yourself as a go-to, high-end real estate photographer.

Here are 15 real estate photography tips you can use as a guide when shooting luxury real estate and marketing your images.

1. Prepare the Property Before Shooting

When you’re getting ready to shoot, you should first prepare your shooting space. 

In our day-to-day lives, we often become accustomed to a bit of clutter around the house. We might not even notice the small objects scattered around the room. 

However, when it comes to capturing images of luxury houses, those objects can stand out. So, it’s essential to ensure that countertops, coffee tables, and other surfaces are clean and free from any distractions.

Now, when it comes to decorating, it’s generally recommended to keep 1-3 decorative items. 

However, capturing cabinets in your shots is not always necessary unless there’s something truly special about them, like if they are custom-made. So, choose wisely and showcase the unique aspects of a property.

2. Photo List for Luxury Real Estate Photography

Use this standard list of photographs as a reference when shooting high-end real estate photography to ensure you cover all angles and rooms:

  • 2 wide-angle shots in each bedroom, living room, and kitchen
  • 1 photo of the bathroom
  • 1-3 photos of the backyard (no matter the standard)
  • 1-2 shots of the front exterior
  • 1 photo of each utility room (e.g. laundry, garage, and storage room)

3. Invest in a DSLR Camera

If you specialize in high-end real estate photography, then features like face-tracking autofocus systems or fast continuous shooting modes won’t be of much use to you. 

What you need is a good DSLR camera. The Canon 5D Mark IV comes highly recommended by many photographers in the industry. 

Canon 5D Mark IV

With this camera, you can capture stunning images even in low-light conditions, thanks to its impressive ISO capabilities. Plus, it delivers excellent image quality for web publishing, even at higher sensitivities.

For more options, here are our recommendations for the top 12 DSLR and Mirrorless cameras for real estate photography.

4. Use Natural Lighting if Possible

When it comes to real estate photography, natural light is a top priority. So, before you start shooting, make sure to open up those large windows if you have any and let in as much light as possible. 

If needed, you can also bring in some artificial light sources.

Now, here’s an important tip: avoid using a combination of cool fluorescent and warm incandescent bulbs together. 

It’s best to stick with bulbs that have the same color temperature for a consistent look. Otherwise, you might want to consider using a flash to capture the perfect shot.

For more lighting tips, you can visit our beginner’s guide to lighting choices for real estate photographers.

5. Exterior vs Interior Photography

When taking exterior and interior shots, there are a few things to consider.

For exterior shots, you should try to illuminate the property’s night-time charm with outdoor lighting options like pathway lights, landscape lights, and uplights. 

Twilight Photo Editing by PhotoUp
Twilight Real Estate Photo Editing by PhotoUp

Additionally, capture captivating well-lit photos of the pool or any water feature to showcase their allure after dusk.

For interior shots, you should focus on creating a cozy and intimate atmosphere in living spaces, dining areas, and bedrooms with the use of warm and dimmed lights. 

Real Estate Photo Editing by PhotoUp
Real Estate Photo Editing by PhotoUp

It’s the perfect way to add a touch of ambiance and comfort to these areas.

6. Shoot During the Golden Hour – Twilight

When the sun sets and the twilight takes over, the house transforms into a breathtaking sight that captures attention online. 

The golden hour that’s present at sunset and also at sunrise creates a warm glow emanating from the interior against the stunning blue exterior, with a mesmerizing sea of city lights below. 

Using twilight photography as the main photo for your listing can increase views by an average of 76%

In fact, twilight usage overwhelmingly leans towards higher priced homes with 59% towards homes $500k+, 32% for homes $300-$500k, and 8% for homes $100-$300k. 

Twilight photography provides that exclusive look and feel that’s perfect for showcasing high-end properties. 

7. Emphasize the Property’s Size

When it comes to showcasing luxury properties, capturing their true size is crucial. To achieve this, follow the same rules as you would for commercial real estate photography.

Consider taking photos from a corner or diagonal position. This creates an illusion of depth, allowing viewers to better understand the spatial dimensions of the property.

By emphasizing the room’s dimensions, hallways, and other areas, you can provide an accurate portrayal.

Another tip is to include foreground elements. Placing familiar objects like furniture, plants, or even people in the foreground helps viewers gauge the size of the space. 

For example, strategically positioning a chair or table near the camera serves as a visual reference point, enhancing their understanding of the object’s size.

By incorporating these techniques into your photography, you can capture properties in a way that not only portrays their true size but also engages viewers.

8. Keep the Camera at the Right Height

luxury real estate photography

When you’re shooting luxury real estate, one crucial tip is to keep your camera at a height of around 150 cm. 

While every house may vary slightly, this camera position will help you capture the most natural and balanced shots.

If you lift the camera too high, you’ll end up with an excessive ceiling and not enough living space in the frame. 

On the other hand, if you position it too low, your photos will have too much furniture and won’t showcase the actual room size.

9. Use Aerial/Drone Photography

Drones are becoming increasingly popular in the world of real estate photography. 

They offer a unique perspective, allowing photographers to capture stunning photos, 360 panoramic views, and videos of houses from various positions and angles. 

A professional real estate photographer knows the importance of aerial photography for showcasing luxurious properties to potential clients. 

With aerial shots, clients can explore every detail of a house, as well as the surrounding areas and neighboring objects. It’s an exciting way to showcase properties and create a captivating visual experience.

Have You Ever Thought To

Outsource Photo Editing?

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10. Always Use a Tripod

luxury real estate photography

When it comes to capturing those picture-perfect real estate shots, camera shake can be a real buzzkill. That’s where a trusty tripod from reliable brands comes into play. 

Not only does it solve the problem of imperfections, but it also ensures a steady shot every time, which is crucial when shooting high-end properties. 

And if you’re focused on photographing interiors, don’t forget about maintaining an even horizon and perspective — they’re the secret ingredients to stunning shots!

For more details, you can check out our blog post on the best tripods for real estate photography

11. A Wide-Angle Lens Is a Must 

A Wide-Angle Lens Is a Must

When it comes to capturing high-end property photos, the wide-angle lens is a game-changer. It’s particularly handy when you’re dealing with buildings surrounded by other structures.

But that’s not all – a wide lens is a must-have for interior shots. It lets you capture every detail and make the space look as spacious as possible. 

In our experience, the Canon 17 mm f/4L is an excellent choice. Or consider investing in any of these 15 picks of wide-angle lenses

Trust us, they’ll take your real estate photography to the next level.

12. Leverage the Golden Ratio

Real estate photographers often use the golden ratio, a mathematical concept that creates visually balanced images. 

You might not even realize it, but the golden ratio is everywhere! It’s been used in famous artwork like the Mona Lisa. People just naturally find images that follow the golden ratio to be pleasing.

So, how do you use it? It’s simple! Divide your frame into thirds using vertical and horizontal lines, creating a grid of nine sections. Some cameras can even provide this grid for you. 

luxury real estate photography

Now, place your key elements along these lines or intersections. This will guide the viewer’s eye and create harmony in your photo.

When you’re photographing a panoramic view, make sure to align the horizon with one of the horizontal golden ratio lines. This will balance the sky and the landscape, creating an impressive shot.

For interiors with luxurious architectural elements, consider positioning a grand staircase, fireplace, or intricate ceiling design along the golden ratio lines. This will make your photo more visually appealing and engaging.

13. Never Skip the Post-Processing!

As a real estate photographer, you know that photo editing plays a vital role in creating stunning images. 

From color correction to adjusting white balance, contrast, and saturation, various techniques will enhance the overall quality. You can even work with curves and transform day into dusk

Furthermore, photo editing allows you to:

This will ensure impeccable results for luxury and commercial properties, residential homes, and other buildings.

If you feel unsure about your photo editing skills or simply lack the time, consider turning to professional services like PhotoUp

Our experienced team of real estate photo editors can tackle any challenge, delivering flawless photographs that truly capture the essence of a property.

14. Virtually Stage Your Images to Create a Luxury Presentation

Selling a high-end home that’s unfurnished and fairly empty can be challenging. Empty rooms and bare walls may not appeal to luxury home buyers. 

However, by adding beautifully furnished and decorated rooms with the use of photo-realistic virtual staging to your listing, you can attract more prospective buyers and spark their interest in visiting the home. 

In other words, showcasing the potential of the property through visually stunning images can make all the difference in getting potential buyers excited about the home.

The luxury virtual staging style is all about refined class. It’s a modern take on classic Victorian design with nods to antiquity, restrained glister, masterful woodwork, and elegant floor coverings.

Luxury Virtual Staging by PhotoUp
Luxury Virtual Staging by PhotoUp

The luxury style entails sophistication, elegance, detail, a sense of proportion, and a distinctive feeling that living is easy. 

PhotoUp’s virtual staging designers can add gorgeous large-size furniture and stylish decor to inspire social interaction and comfort. As well as the commonly used accents in gold, silver, brass, or copper to create that luxurious feel.

There are no limitations to what virtual staging can do to transform a space.

15. Create a Single Property Website to Market Luxury Properties

To truly make your luxury real estate photography stand out online, you need more than just a basic presence.

You need a single property website to showcase your property images in their best possible light!

How to use single property listing websites to sell your property 
PhotoUp Single Property Websites

Think of single property websites as the real estate equivalent of a glamorous photo shoot: they provide flexibility and a touch of elegance that regular listings simply can’t match. 

Instead of cramming several properties onto one page, single listing websites focus solely on showcasing one property in its very best light. 

This means you can highlight its standout features without the competition and distractions from other listings!

With a single property website, you can:

  • Provide more in-depth information
  • Highlight all special features of the property
  • Include photos or virtually staged images, walk-through videos, interactive tours, floor plans, and more to increase the appeal of particularly unique spaces
  • Add clear CTA (Call-To-Action) buttons like “Schedule a Showing” to allow agents to find interested buyers who are not already represented
  • Capture more “hot” leads with pre-installed opt-in forms
  • Boost SEO rankings and get more visibility in search engines
  • Integrate Google Maps for easy navigation to the property
  • Significantly increase the appeal and sense of luxury of your listings
  • And more.

By utilizing a dedicated single property website on a unique URL, you can gain a significant advantage in showcasing your real estate photography and maximizing the selling potential of your listings. 

The Ultimate All-in-One

Real Estate Photographer Business Platform

Grow a successful real estate photography business with PhotoUp.

Let PhotoUp Enhance Your Real Estate Photography!

Ready to take your real estate photography game to the next level? 

Meet PhotoUp, where our team of expert real estate photo editors is here to help elevate your photos beyond expectations.

Real Estate Photo Editors by PhotoUp
Real Estate Photo Editors at PhotoUp

With over a decade of experience and a talented team of hundreds, we bring unmatched quality, excellent customer service, and competitive pricing to the table. 

For most edits, our prices typically range from $1.10 to $9.00 per image, depending on your subscription and the level of complexity. 

We offer all typical real estate photo editing services such as:

  • Image brightness and exposure correction 
  • Color and tone adjustments 
  • Window masking and glare reduction
  • Clutter and advanced object removal
  • Line and angle corrections
  • HDR editing and manual blending
  • Harsh shadows and lack of light 
  • Sky replacements
  • Twilight and day-to-dusk editing
  • And much more!

PhotoUp – Your Real Estate Marketing Partner

Custom House Portrait by PhotoUp
Custom House Portrait by PhotoUp

In addition, PhotoUp is a complete one-stop-shop for real estate marketing and also offers services such as:

Whether you’re a real estate photographer striving to elevate your craft or simply someone eager to capture the beauty of everyday moments, we’ve got you covered with everything you need.

Easy Upload & Order Process

Getting started with PhotoUp is super easy!

All you need to do is sign up for a free PhotoUp account, upload your images, choose export setting and turnaround time, and that’s it!

PhotoUp Real Estate Photo Editing Uploader Demo

To see how easy it is to get started, have a look at our real estate photo editing uploader demo:

It’s really as easy as 1-2-3!

So what are you waiting for? Sign up for a free PhotoUp account today and let our expert real estate photo editors help you create top-notch, luxury real estate photography!

And the best part? When you sign up for an account, you’ll receive a bonus of 10 free edits to use however you please! 

We hope this guide provided you with some valuable tips when shooting luxury real estate photography. Before you go, you may also want to check out the following resources:

Stina Pettersson

Professional Blogger

Stina is an entrepreneur, digital marketer, and professional blogger who's passionate about real estate photo editing, being outdoors with her pup, and sweaty gym sessions. She loves the written word and has been writing for publications like Forbes and Thrive Global. Originally from Sweden, she's called South Florida her home since 2013.

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