How to Prepare for Virtual Showings

With the majority of buyers shopping for homes online theses days more than ever, high-resolution photographs and video tours are essential. Here’s how to make your home shine on camera.

Understand the camera’s perspective

The camera’s eye is different from the human eye. It magnifies clutter and poor furniture arrangement so that even a home that feels comfortable in person can look jumbled online.

Make it spotless

Cameras also tend to magnify grime. Don’t forget floor coverings and walls; a spot on a rug might be overlooked during a regular home showing, but it could become a focal point online. Remove clutter and clear off counters. Wash windows and screens.

Brighten your rooms

Put higher wattage bulbs in light fixtures to brighten up rooms and basements. Replace any burned-out bulbs and turn on all lights. Clean the walls, or better yet, brush on a fresh coat of neutral color paint.

Know what to leave

You want to avoid clutter, but try to have three items of varying heights on each surface. On an end table you can place a tall lamp (high), a small plant (medium), and a book (low).

Pare down

Removing one or two pieces of furniture from each room, even if just for the shoot, can make your space appear larger on screen.


Spotlight the flow of your space by creating a focal point on the furthest wall from the doorway and arranging the other pieces of furniture to make a triangle shape. The focal point may be a bed in a bedroom or a china cabinet in a dining room.


Include a healthy plant in every room; the camera loves greenery. Energize bland decor by placing a bright vase on a mantle or draping an afghan over a couch. Try to avoid using red as it doesn’t photograph as well as other colors.

Snap practice pictures with your own camera

This will give you an idea of what the home will look like on camera before the photographer shows up. Examine the photos and make changes to improve each room’s appearance, such as opening blinds to let in natural light, removing magnets from the refrigerator, or taking down distracting art.

Keep the home in shape

Buyers who liked what they saw online expect to encounter the same home when they visit in person.


For even more tips on how to prepare for professional photos and virtual showings, talk to a Colony Realty agent today.