If a picture is worth a thousand words, then you’ll want to make sure the photography you use to market your luxury real estate listing speaks to potential buyers in a memorable and intriguing way. You want to inspire them to take action.

Property photos were the most important website feature for nine out of 10 buyers according to the 2017 National Association of Realtors Home Buyer and Seller Generational Trends.

In Part 1 of this series, we talked about what comprises good photography – lighting, angle and the aspects that make some photos more striking than others. In this post, we’re presenting a do-it-yourself (DIY) approach to luxury real estate photography.

DIY Works with Slim Marketing Budgets

Good photographers are expensive. With technological advances and a bit of know-how, luxury real estate photography can indeed be DIY these days, especially if you’re working with a slim marketing budget.

Remember, minimum picture specs for print photos are 1290 x 950 pixels and 300 dots per inch (DPI). Digital requires the same resolution, but it has a DPI requirement of 72.

Invest in a Professional Camera

Aside from the proper resolution, you’ll need to snap quality shots. For that, you need the right tools for the job. No amount of retouching can fix a bad photo.

I recommend a DSLR Camera. These cameras have manual controls that allow you to adjust the settings to your specific needs. Top brands include Canon, Nikon and Sony, but there are many other brands available. A camera, lenses and Secure Digital (SD) flash memory cards can easily cost thousands of dollars, but you can find used cameras for around $350 on eBay. Just make sure to buy from a reputable seller.

A Smartphone Camera Can Work Too

For a simpler solution, you can use your smartphone. After all, the critically successful film, Tangerine was shot on an iPhone. You just need the right phone – one that can take a minimum of pictures at 1920 x 1080 pixels. This is available with the iPhone 6, or later models. The Samsung Galaxy S4 will work also if you prefer an Android device.

Customize Your Camera Lens with an App

Smartphones have very powerful cameras, but still not as powerful as a DSLR camera. The problem is that smartphone cameras are automatic and the lenses are limited. You can overcome this with the use of apps like Filmic Pro. It’s a simple fix that gives you control over the phone’s camera settings, such as exposure and focus. It’s an inexpensive improvement that will allow you to get closer to professional quality photos.

Invest in Special Lenses

Another option is to purchase special lenses for your camera. These lenses allow your camera to take a broader range of pictures. This means a more distinct picture that captures the scope of your luxury property listing. The lenses are also helpful when taking indoor pictures with poor lighting.

Prices can vary greatly, depending on the quality. You can expect to pay less than $20 on the lower end and as much as $350 for a top-of-the-line Sony with 30x optical zoom, which is comparable to a DSLR camera.

Professional photographs are powerful assets for luxury property marketing. A DIY approach to property photos using the proper tools can maximize a tight marketing budget. It will take a bit of practice with your new photography tools to develop a knack for capturing the beauty of a luxury property in pictures. But be patient. You’ll develop a great eye for it.