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Maximizing Your Airbnb Listing: Real Estate Photography vs. Lifestyle Photography

I often receive the question: "Can I use Real Estate Photography for my Airbnb listing?"


If you're an Airbnb host looking to attract more guests, you might wonder whether you should invest in Real Estate or Lifestyle Photography. 


Ok, let’s be honest; you might not even know the difference, so let’s break it down! 


With Real Estate photography, the agent needs to find that ONE buyer who is the perfect fit. The homes are often unfurnished, so the photos are more about the amount of space available and any upgrades that have been done to appliances or finishes. You're showing off the space, the layout, and the costly features included. In other words, you’re showing the actual house rather than telling a story of what happens in it. 

If you're content with basic wide-angle room photos, real estate photography is a budget-friendly option. 


But what if that isn’t the look or vibe you are going for? 


You were told real estate photos are the professional way to go, but they’re cold and don't settle well with your gut. And ultimately, it’s not doing your home justice! Of course, bookings are always nice, but you want guests who love your space as much as you do, and they need to see it in its true form to do that.








That’s where Lifestyle-Vacation Rental photography comes in! With Lifestyle photography, you are marketing the lifestyle the rental home can offer potential renters. As those who book it are usually looking for a getaway, it is essential to showcase the kind of dreamy lifestyle they can expect to lure them in. This involves highlighting the furnishings and styling of the rental home and the photo style you use when capturing the shots. 




So let’s take a poll: would you rather see a coffee pot on a counter with a sugar container and mugs? Or a cup of coffee in hand, while you scroll the vinyl record collection?


Which photo would hit you in the feels if YOU were looking for a vacation rental for your next getaway? 







If you picked coffee in hand while looking through records, then you would want to go with Lifestyle- Vacation Rental Photographer. A professional lifestyle photographer like me here at The Wandering Tourists –will put in the time and effort required to capture every detail of your home, just like you have.


Your property will look “lived in,” not staged and sterile.


Did you know when a potential guest looks for a place to stay, you have less than 30 seconds to impress them? It is crucial to present your property in the best possible way and highlight all the important features while keeping the story flowing smoothly. This will help keep the viewer interested and engaged. By guiding them through the house and filling in all the gaps, you can help them feel comfortable and turn them from a visitor into a guest.



Lifestyle- Vacation Rental photography goes beyond simply showcasing the property. It aims to connect with potential guests emotionally, enticing them to choose that particular listing for their stay. Airbnb or lifestyle photographers understand that guests are not just looking for a place to sleep; they seek an experience. Therefore, they have to put in the extra effort to make the property look inviting, cozy, and full of character. 



Lifestyle photographers aim to capture the essence of the neighborhood and surrounding area when taking photos of their property. This can include taking shots of nearby attractions, local landmarks, and beautiful landscapes to give potential guests an idea of what they can expect during their stay. While this requires extra time and effort to research and photograph, it can help your property stand out among its competitors.


Remember, to create an ideal setting for an Airbnb listing or social media page; it is not enough to just click photos of empty rooms or sterile spaces. One needs to pay attention to details and stage the space carefully. Lifestyle Photographers like myself, who specialize in this type of photography, lend your true authentic space and amenities to creating a warm and inviting environment that translates into creating a visual narrative for your clients and potential guests. These details can significantly attract guests and make the property stand out from others!




Overall, your home was a huge investment — you’ve invested time, money, and much more into a space you are ready to share with the world. There is undeniably a part of you in that space, which makes it special.


Together, we can capture the unique experience of a HOME lovingly put together by people who care – that’s you! Capturing the ambiance of what is possible at your home gives potential guests helpful visual ideas of how their vacation could go and gives them something to get excited about! If you’re ready to make that happen, CLICK HERE.

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