Smartphone vs. Digital Camera For Listing Photos

Smartphone vs. Digital Camera For Listing Photos

 October 25, 2016

You know you have to include plenty of photos in your real estate listings if you want anyone to pay attention to them online. The question isn’t whether you need listing photos, but rather how you should take them. Do you need a digital camera or will your smartphone be enough?

Not every real estate professional has the budget for a professional photographer, and not every listing warrants the expense. When you need listing photos, it’s usually your job to take them. If you’re unsure which option to choose, take a look at the pros and cons of smartphones and digital cameras to help you decide.

Using Your Smartphone

Smartphones have come a long way in the past few years. Many now come with better digital cameras than you can buy in a big box store. If you’re leaning towards your smartphone for your listing photos, it’s not a bad decision.

  • Your smartphone is always with you.
  • The phone and camera are easy to use.
  • You can download apps to help you edit the images.
  • You can shoot video of your listing.
  • Photos and videos are easy to share online after you take them.

Your phone’s camera isn’t always the perfect solution, though. Smartphone cameras can cause more problems than they solve in specific situations.

  • The sensors do not always work well in low lighting.
  • To get a wide view, better lighting, and a clearer zoom, you may need to buy extra equipment.
  • If your phone is more than a year or two old, the camera feature won’t be as good as those on a newer phone.
  • Cheaper phones tend to have cheaper components. Even if your phone is new, if it was the least expensive one in the store, your photo quality may be poor.

Smartphones are a great option if you know you’ll procrastinate or get too busy to go back and get pictures off the digital camera or memory card. If you have a good quality camera built into your phone, and ease of use and convenience are important, a smartphone is a good choice.

Using a Digital Camera

For those who have an older smartphone or like the idea of using a digital camera, there are plenty of reasons to choose a handheld camera over your phone.

  • Picture quality is higher, depending on the type of the camera you choose.
  • Larger sensors and a more powerful flash help you take better pictures in low or difficult lighting.
  • Digital cameras have a longer battery life so you don’t have to worry about it dying at the end of a long day.
  • Digital cameras have an optical zoom which allows you to get a crisper image when you zoom in.
  • If you need to touch up an image, Photoshop and other similar programs give you more options than a phone app.

Choosing a digital camera isn’t without its flaws. Keep these things in mind as you decide.

  • A digital camera is something else to remember to keep with you.
  • You’ll have the extra step of hooking your camera to a computer or laptop to access the images.
  • While cameras have come down in price over the past few years, higher quality cameras cost more than the point and click variety.

Ultimately what matters is that your listings have good pictures that let potential buyers get an idea of what the property looks like before they view it in person. Smartphone or digital camera, there is no one right solution for every real estate agent. Consider your personality, your skill level, and your budget to decide which option is best for you.

Michaela Mitchell

By Michaela Mitchell

Former Communications Director for a local Realtor Association and a big cheerleader for all things real estate related, Michaela is now a full-time freelance writer specializing in real estate and other business industries. When she's not writing the serious business-y stuff, she's likely to be found writing about the hilarity of being a Mom to two rowdy boys.