image of camera taking photo of bedroom

Real Estate Pros Share Tips for Great Bedroom Photos

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/ July 24, 2019
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A picture isn't worth just 1,000 words. If it's a photograph to accompany a real estate listing, it could also be worth thousands of dollars. Good photography can help a home sell faster and for more money.

You can always hire a professional real estate photographer to take pictures for you, at a cost of $100 to $300. But if you're handy with a camera, or just want to shoot some snaps for your Instagram feed, even an amateur can do a good job—especially with today's smartphone cameras, which are capable of taking high-resolution photos that rival the images you can capture with fancy digital equipment.

How to photograph your bedroom

We asked professional interiors photographers for their top tips and tricks for photographing a bedroom so that it looks great.

De-clutter like crazy

Clutter can make even a large bedroom look small, says Buddy Mountcastle, a real estate photographer in Fort Lauderdale, Fla. Mountcastle recommends removing knick-knacks and bulky furniture and hiding personal items, like family photographs, from view. “You don't want anything distracting from the space," he explains.

Creating a clear line of sight to the windows is also important. “You need to be able to see the room from one end to the other," Mountcastle says. "In other words, you don't want an object, like a tall vase, blocking your line of sight." (For more decluttering tips, check out Saatva's interview with a KonMari method expert.)

Make the bed look inviting

“You never want to shoot a messy bed," says Barry Grossman, an architectural and interiors photographer in South Florida. Make the bed properly—taking time to tuck in sheets, fluff pillows, and remove wrinkles from the duvet or comforter. (Pro tip: Hospital corners will keep your flat sheets taut and give it the look of a luxury hotel bed.)

Neutral-colored bedding is best, but add a bright accent pillow or throw blanket for an extra pop of color—or place a breakfast tray with colorful fruit on the bed. Depending on the space, you might also want to put a small plant or flower on a nightstand. These kinds of small touches can make a space read cozier, Grossman says.

Maximize natural lighting

Don't stint on lighting. Mountcastle recommends turning on all overhead lights and opening window shades and blinds. “If curtains are shut, the room is going to look smaller and it's going to feel trapped," he says.

When you shoot is also important. To capture the most flattering natural light, Grossman advises shooting in the mid-morning or early afternoon on a sunny day.

Aim into the room

“I always shoot from the doorway into the room, and I try to capture at least three walls so that the room looks spacious," Mountcastle says. The bed should be the focal point (it's a bedroom, after all!) so, if possible, move the bed into the center of the room instead of against a wall.

Use the right equipment

To capture every detail, attach a wide-angle lens to your smartphone's camera, or choose a wide-angle setting on your digital camera. This BullyEyes clip-on lens ($28 on Amazon) lets you snap images with 120-degree views, and it's compatible with iOS, Android, and Windows devices.

Also, a tripod with a smartphone adaptor will keep you from taking blurry photos. Make sure all furnishings (e.g., bookcases, chairs, dressers) are aligned within the frame. Adjust the tripod's height so that the camera lens is set at eye level, and avoid catching your reflection in a mirror.

Touch up images post-production

By following these pointers, you'll snap high-quality bedroom photographs—but pictures can always be improved with a little editing. You can use a photo-editing software program, like Adobe Photoshop, to make adjustments to features like brightness, contrast, and color saturation.

Alternatively, you could hire a photo editing service to make the improvements for you. For instance, fixthephoto.com offers basic retouching for $2 per photo. That's a small price to pay for professional-looking bedroom pictures.

Has your guest room seen better days? Here are tips for decorating your guest bedroom so that visitors will get a great night's sleep.

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