How to Prepare For You Listing Photo Shoot

We all know we only get one chance to make a first impression. Making a good first impression is never more important than when listing a home for sale. A recent survey done by the National Association of Realtors showed that 92% of home buyers use the internet to find their new home. And 83% of those buyers look at the photos first, before deciding whether or not to read the rest of the listing. Hiring a professional photographer is the best way to make your listing stand out from all the others. 

However, hiring a photographer to photograph a house that isn't ready is money down the drain. After all, your photographer isn't in the business of cleaning houses, and you don't want to pay extra to get the clutter edited out of the photos. Here are some useful tips for getting the home ready before the photographer arrives. Feel free to print these tips here to give to you sellers! 

Exterior: Front and Back

  • Remove all vehicles from the driveway

  • Close all windows

  • Sweep walkways

  • Pick up leaves/sticks/branches

  • Trim bushes and remove dead plants/flowers

  • Put toys, bicycles away

  • Store away seasonal décor

  • Stow garden tools, supplies

  • Remove all hoses

  • Straighten and arrange deck furniture

  • Clean pool area

  • Hide the trash cans

Knoxville Real Estate Photography

Interior: Main Areas

  • Remove personal items/photos

  • Remove all visible clutter

  • Open shades, blinds, and curtains

  • Turn on all lights

  • Turn off ceiling fans

  • Replace burned out light bulbs

  • Tidy up or put away all children’s toys

  • Hide pet dishes/toys/beds

  • Vacuum carpets

  • Sweep hard floors

  • Remove newspapers, mail

  • Hide trash cans

  • Display attractive books

  • Straighten cushions/fluff pillows

  • Turn off televisions


  • Remove all items from refrigerator door

  • Store food in cabinets

  • De-clutter counters, stove

  • Stow small appliances

  • Hide soaps, cleaning items

  • Hide dish towels, sponges

  • Clear sink of dishes

  • Put away draining rack

  • Organize items on open shelves

  • Place bowl of fruit on counter

  • Turn on any under counter/over cabinet lights

  • Hide trash can

Dining Room:

  • Straighten/push in dining chairs

  • Add centerpiece or vase of flowers

  • Set the table for dinner

  • Open blinds/curtains/shades


  • Make the beds

  • Arrange decorative pillows

  • Put away clothing, shoes

  • Clean under the bed

  • Clear surfaces of clutter

  • Open shade/blinds/curtains

  • Turn on lights

  • Turn off ceiling fans


  • Make the bathrooms sparkle

  • Hang fresh towels

  • Clear counters of toiletries
  • Clean mirrors
  • Clean toilet and close lid
  • Remove all items from tub and shower
  • Hide toilet brush/plunger
  • Hide the trash can