Getting Your Home Ready For Photo Day

getting your home ready for sale

Listing Agent in Monterey Peninsula Complimentary StagingThe importance of preparing the home for sale will have a significant impact on marketing your home on MLS and the Internet. In Real Estate, a picture can be worth thousands of dollars. Preparing the house before the photographer arrives provides greater ability to focus his time on capturing those images that will best represent the home for potential buyers. Staging readies the home, and saves time for the photography session.

This home ready guide can be used to ready the home for a smooth photo session. Best practice is to hide as many personal items as possible because potential buyers would rather imagine their own items on the shelves.

The word ‘hide’, is optimal here. Thinking that moving items into one room while the other room is photographed usually does not work and adds time to complete the session. Many times, we think those items are “hidden” by moving them to another room only to find out they are still in the picture because of the multiple angle shots taken. Time to retake the shot occurs and time to move the items again must be taken when the photographer gets to that room. So out of site – out of picture is the best practice.

This list can seem very overwhelming at first glance; however, it is designed to be used as a guide if any of these areas need attention.


 Clean windows and all reflective or glass surfaces  Replace all burned out light bulbs
 Lights turned on throughout the home
 Ceiling fans turned off

 Remove cobwebs from wall/ceiling corners
 Fix/straighten/open blinds and shutters
 Make sure cabinet doors and dressers drawers close all the way  Make sure framed artwork and mirrors are not hanging crooked  Remove any small rugs that are not in great condition
 Pets secured, pet toys, accessories, dishes out of sight


 Remove magnets, artwork, photos from refrigerator  Remove any items from the top of the refrigerator  Put away all unnecessary appliances, dish racks, etc.  Make sure towels are clean and neatly folded

 Clean stovetop and put away any pots and pans
 Neatly organize any visible hanging kitchen utensils
 Make sure the sink is empty, put all dishes and sponges away  Hide calendars, mail, phone chargers, etc. out of view
 Hide paper towels, trash cans
 Remove booster seats from dining room chairs


 Hide TV remotes and game controllers
 Hide exposed A/V or electrical cables, if possible
 Straighten and organize books and DVDs on bookshelves  Place fresh unburned logs in the fireplace, if possible
 Remove extra pillows and blankets from couch and chairs  Remove any unnecessary furniture or exercise equipment


 Remove as much as possible from desktop areas
 Neatly organize any paperwork or items that can’t be removed  Organize or hide computer cables under or around desk
 Straighten/organize items on bookshelves
 Hide trash cans and shredders out of view


 Make beds, be sure all loose sheets are tucked in
 Make sure any items under bed are hidden from view
 Remove as much as possible from dresser and bedside table tops  Make sure frames, posters etc. are not crooked
 Remove excessive stuffed animals and arrange or hide kid’s toys  Hide laundry basket out of view
 Remove any temporary fans or space heaters


 Make sure towels are clean and neatly folded
 Remove any used shower towels
 Toilet seats closed
 Hide toothbrushes and other items from counter  Clean all spots and streaks from the mirror

 Put a small potted flower on the counter, if possible
 Hide plunger, cleaning supplies, air freshener, etc. out of view  Hide shower supplies out of view
 Hide trash cans and diaper disposal out of view


 Be prepared to move any cars or trailers from driveway
 Hide garbage cans out of view from street
 Put colorful flowers near the front door, patios and walkways  Hide pet toys, crates, beds, dishes etc. out of view
 Hide shoes, kids toys, sporting equipment out of view
 Neatly coil or remove hoses and temporary sprinklers
 Neatly arrange patio furniture and BBQ equipment
 Trim and remove dead or discolored branches and leaves
 Remove leaves from pool, walkways and patio areas
 Remove pool sweep before appointment, if possible
 Remove temporary fence around pool, if possible
 Turn on waterfall ahead of time and clean leaves from pool


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