Airbnb Photography: a Godsend for the Gross Apartment

Airbnb Photography: a Godsend for the Gross Apartment

2 min read
Erin Spradlin Read More

With Airbnb‘s growing popularity comes growing competition. Gone are the days when you could throw up an Airbnb listing with a few vague sentences and an iPhone photo that conjured struggling bachelor at best and invoked Silence of the Lambs–level creepiness at worst. Actually photos like that still exist, but now they:

  1. Don’t get booked
  2. Get booked less than they should
  3. Get booked for less than they should.

There’s good news for people with creeper apartments, though: Airbnb is here to help you present a less-embarrassing lifestyle.

Enter Airbnb photographers. This service is available for most places for free, and it’s a Godsend. (For the record, this is also true for nice apartments. Professional photographers just make your place look better and this is an important step when you’re competing against pages upon pages of listings.)

Related: The Upsides & Downsides of Airbnb: A Landlord’s Perspective

Why You Want One

First, the photographers know how to arrange your furniture in a way that’s most appealing to the eye. They also know nuanced photography tricks that the average person just doesn’t, like shoot from the hip and not somewhere else (like your chest or your face or wherever you normally hold a camera.) Second, they have amaaaaazing filters. Models-in-magazines-level filters that lighten and brighten your place until your garden-level bachelor pad looks like the SoHo pad of a rich kid. Here’s proof:

BEFORE

Screen Shot 2017 10 04 at 8.36.16 PM

Screen Shot 2017 10 04 at 9.10.57 PM

AFTER

Screen Shot 2017 10 04 at 8.36.21 PM

Screen Shot 2017 10 04 at 9.11.02 PM

Related: 13 Mistakes New Vacation Rental Owners Always Make

Some people wonder if this is ethical or is somehow a misrepresentation of what they own. I can’t answer that, but I can say, that’s our place/was our place (let’s be honest, James’ place) and, in my opinion, it looked closer to the first photo than the second, and we never had a single complaint about it. No one ever said to us that the photos were misleading. We had outstanding reviews on the place. It’s not that I don’t think people noticed the discrepancy, but I think we got them to consider us based on the photo, and then won them over with customer service.

The best thing about the Airbnb photography is that it’s free and available for most listings. Simply Google “free Airbnb photography” and a host of options will come up. If your place doesn’t qualify for photography, it’s still worth shelling out the $100-$150 to get your place professionally photographed. Trust me when I say it’ll be worth it.

[Edit: Airbnb no longer officially offers free photography, and availability depends on your area per this update on their site. We still advise that hosts upgrade their photos, whether for a cost or by informing yourself on basic photography strategies.]

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What tricks have you used to make your photographs more appealing to Airbnbers? Let me know in the comments section below!

With Airbnb's growing popularity comes growing competition. Here's how professional photographs can make your listing stand out.