Home Staging Tips

Photography Lighting

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The Ins and Outs of Exterior Photography and Proper Light

Photography Lighting is rarely the first thing that is on the mind of the customer when they schedule their appointment with the real estate photographer. More often than not, they wanted it taken as soon as their busy schedule dictates. Customers usually don’t consider the importance of the season, the direction of the home and where it sits in relation to the sun at different points during the day, or even whether their home looks best in daylight or at dusk. All of these factors can have a drastic effect on the lighting your photographer has to work with (or not work with, as the case may be) in their effort to make your home look as attractive and inviting as possible.


Generally speaking, any outdoor photography, including real estate, will benefit from early or late day lighting. Before scheduling your photographer, take notice of whether your home faces the sunrise or sunset, or neither. If you have lived in your home for many years, you probably already know this. However, you may not have noticed just how little sun the front of your south facing home actually gets in the winter. While overcast skies can eliminate any issues with the sun’s position and any lighting issues it may cause, and can provide more flexibility to a shooting schedule, it can also have a less than desirable effect on an otherwise stunning exterior image.


A technique that has gained popularity with some clients is the dusk/dark technique. Many believe it helps sell properties and allows a bit more flexibility in scheduling a session. The setting sun allows the photographer to shoot the home from the best angle to showcase the house. The homeowner will turn on all the lights in interior and exterior to capture a beautiful scene. From a photography standpoint, the sky’s exposure will balance with the room lights’ exposure. This technique gives the home the opportunity to “light up” and stand out in the photograph.


Whether it is a daylight shoot, an overcast shoot, or a dusk shoot, it is best to discuss with your realtor and the photographer are the best option for your home. Ultimately, every home is different and your real estate professionals will be able to guide you in maximizing your home’s selling potential with each photograph.