This post will provide a few tips for having the home ready for your photo shoot. Feel free to share with your clients.
Generally, the smoothest shoots are the completed when no one is in the home. I can move about the house adjusting blinds, furniture, personal items as needed for the shoot. I realize this isn’t always realistic, so maybe some insight as to the methodology of the shoot will be beneficial.
The photo shoot is not the time to complete listing agreements, property disclosures, etc. You will have to keep jumping from room to room to get out of lens view and I’ll have to keep asking you to. It breaks up the rhythm of the job and the order in which the home is shot.
Usually, the shoot begins and ends outside. Your sign and flyer holders are removed and stills of the front and the back of the home are shot. It’s best to have as few cars as possible around the front of the house. If you would like to attend the photo shoot please park at least 2-3 homes away. Please have the homeowners put their car(s) in the garage or park them at least 2-3 homes away.
After shooting the exterior I will then move inside for the first pass through the house shooting still images. These are done with the camera on either a tripod or a monopod so that resulting images are level and well framed. It’s always best if the home is ready for the photos shoot when I arrive. Below is a link to some tips that you can provide your sellers to prepare for the shoot.
After all of the still images have been shot, I place the camera on a rotating head and begin shooting 360° panoramas of the larger rooms in the house. Typically panoramas of smaller rooms like bathrooms and laundry rooms are not done. When possible partial panoramas of smaller rooms will be completed, giving the viewer a 180° view or larger. Once the panoramas inside are complete, I move outside to shoot panoramic images of the front and backyard if necessary. Please note, if there are cars parked in front of the home, or if there are trash carts lining the street, a panorama of the front of the home will not be completed. Depending upon the size of the home, the photo shoot can take anywhere from 45-90 minutes.
Back at the office, post production begins. The images are downloaded from the camera, adjusted for sharpness, contrast, tone and Photoshop enhanced as needed. All of the images for the panoramas are stitched together to form one large, wide photograph that appears to moving in your virtual tour. When the images are ready they are incorporated into the virtual tour, descriptions added, uploaded to the server and distributed where necessary. The whole process from shoot to final upload can take 4-5 hours depending upon the size of the home and the number of images in the tour.
I hope this provides some insight to the virtual tour process. Feel free to download the Virtual Tour Preparation Guide here.