Colorado Springs Real estate photography

Real Estate Photography Checklist

I talked about Preparing your home for a photo shoot in a previous article. Today, I wanted to give you a checklist for getting the home ready to photograph. Checklists are great for getting things done. This is our real estate photography checklist. Our checklist is long and not every step will apply to every home. However, the overall goal is to have the home in perfect condition so that the photos create a compelling call to action for online shoppers.

It’s well known that real estate photos help market homes faster and at better prices. In fact, the National Association of Realtors has a detailed report from last year. Their report goes into detail on buying and selling trends. Having a home ready to photograph allows you to get the most out of the photoshoot. The real estate photography checklist will help with organization and focus on things that need to get done prior to the photographer arriving for the photoshoot.

Click to download a PDF of the checklist – Real Estate Photography Checklist

Exterior the home

  • Cars and Garages – Close the garage door. Park cars inside or away from the home. No cars in front of the home. Shovel any snow from driveways, sidewalks and walk paths.
  • Trash Bins – Put out of sight in a shed or the garage.
  • Doormats – Some doormats are okay. Unless they are covering something they should be put away
  • Garden Hoses – On a hose hanger rolled up or hidden so they are not visible
  • Deck and Patio – Tidy and clear of toys. Remove debris and snow.
    • Open umbrellas if in good condition
    • Make sure all cushions and pillows are on furniture
  • Yard – Remove debris, toys, gardening tools, lawn maintenance equipment and any other items stored in the yard. Groom the landscaping.
  • Signage and Decorations – Remove any real estate, home security and sports signs. Hold off on holiday décor until after the photoshoot.
  • Views – If the home has a view, be sure to clear any visible obstructions.
  • Windows – From the outside, we want to be able to see inside the home. Open drapes, blinds, curtains and turn on interior lights.

General Interior of the home

  • Clutter – Reduce clutter to make tables, floors and countertops appear spacious
  • Windows – Clean inside and outside
    • Shades up and curtains open
  • Lights and Light Bulbs
    • Light bulbs should be the same type – wattage and luminosity
    • Turn on every light in the home, including under cabinets and over stove
    • Replace all burnt out or missing light bulbs
  • Televisions and Computer Screens – Turn off all screens and screensavers
  • Bookshelves and Desktops – Organize in a clean and uncluttered arrangement with no personal or business information visible
  • Wires, Cables, Phone Cords – Tucked away and not visible
  • Family Photos – Hiding family photos is recommended.
  • Laundry Room – Put laundry, soaps, and other stored items away and out of view
  • Fireplace – Turned off.
  • Ceiling Fans – Ceiling fan will be clean and off for the photoshoot
  • Air Fresheners – Remove and hide them away
  • Entryways – Put away coats, shoes, backpacks, keys, and bags
  • Decorations – Seasonal and holiday décor can make the photos dated in later seasons. Decorating should be done after the photoshoot.
  • Game and Toy rooms – Put everything away. These rooms should not be cluttered
  • Pet Toys, Beds and Kennels – Baskets, toys, bowls, kennels, litterboxes, and scratching posts should all be hidden away for the photoshoot. Also recommended that pets not be present in photographable spaces

Kitchen and Dining areas

  • Counters and Tabletops – Leave uncluttered. Remove small appliances, paper towel holders, draining racks and freshly wipe down
  • Sinks – Remove soaps, wipes, sanitizers, candles, and all dishes
  • Appliances – Clean and avoid steaks
  • Floors – Sweep and mop, remove mats and clutter
  • Backsplash – Wipe clean
  • Trash Bins – Remove and hide, clean space where it is kept
  • Refrigerator Magnets – Remove all magnets, papers, and notes from refrigerator
  • Hand Towels – Hide hand towels away
  • Paper Towel Holders – Paper towel holders and paper towels put away
  • Top of Cabinets and Refrigerator – Remove stored items from the top of cabinets and refrigerator


  • Sink – Wipe clean and remove all toiletries
  • Tub and Shower – Remove soaps, shampoos, and loofahs etc. Clean and leave fixture side open
  • Mirrors – Clean and avoid streaks
  • Towels – Fresh, clean, and orderly towel hung neatly
  • Toilet – Close the lid, be sure it’s clean
  • Floors – Clean. Remove mats
  • Toilet Accessories and Trash Bins – Hide away
  • Scales – Hide away
  • Personal Items – Hide away all toothbrushes, razors, makeup, electronics, clothing, and other items
  • Stands and Baskets – Remove any baskets, stands or bags from the bathroom

Bedrooms and Offices

  • Beds – Solid colors work best. Make bed neat and clean
  • Floors – Decluttered, vacuum or sweep, remove small rugs
  • Desktops and Dressers – Remove small items, papers, and reduce clutter.
  • Modems and Routers – Hide away, hide cords
  • Under Beds – Not always a good hiding place. Keep uncluttered
  • Fans and Things – Remove fans, conditioners, purifiers, humidifiers etc. from rooms

For all your Colorado Springs real estate photography, call Effective Photography – (719) 344-4041

See samples in real estate portfolio.

About the author : Jim Jones

I use my years of experience and technical knowledge to bring a calm and professional approach to photography. My goal is to produce clear and creative images that build respect and brand awareness for my clients.