Real Estate Lifestyle Photos: Should You Include Them?

Explore the impact of real estate lifestyle photos on property marketing: a key tool for showcasing local amenities and lifestyle potential.

Introduction: Real Estate Lifestyle Photos

In the dynamic world of real estate photography, the question often arises: should real estate lifestyle photos be part of your portfolio? These images, showcasing local amenities like cafes, parks, road networks, train stations, and shopping centers, can significantly enhance a property’s appeal. But how do you decide when and how to include them effectively?

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In the dynamic world of real estate marketing, standing out in a crowded marketplace requires not just showcasing properties but selling a dream. This is where incorporating lifestyle photography into standard your real estate photography shots for clients, adds significant value to your clients and their listings. Adding lifestyle images provides buyers with a narrative that resonates with them on an even deeper emotional level.

The Appeal of Lifestyle Images in Real Estate

Real estate lifestyle photos do more than just display a property; they paint a picture of the lifestyle potential buyers could enjoy. Capturing the essence of local cafes, the tranquility of nearby parks, and the convenience of transport and shopping facilities can elevate a property’s desirability. These images offer a glimpse into the community and the day-to-day experiences the area offers, making them a powerful tool for real estate agents.

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Photo by Who’s Denilo ? on Unsplash

Proximity Matters

A key consideration when including lifestyle facilities and public amenities (schools, parks, shopping centres) in your imagery is their proximity to the property. This proximity adds to the convenience factor, which is a significant selling point for potential buyers. As a general rule, these amenities should be within walking distance, ideally a couple of hundred meters. It is a bit unethical for a real estate agent to include a photo of a beach in their listing if getting there involves a 20-30 minute drive.

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Photo by Mike Benna on Unsplash

Client’s Requests and Photographer’s Flexibility

When it comes to including real estate lifestyle photos, the client’s preference plays a crucial role. If the client has specifically requested these types of images, they see value in showcasing the property’s surrounding lifestyle options. In such cases, photographers should be prepared to accommodate these requests. However, if capturing these lifestyle images requires extra effort or time, it’s reasonable to consider a surcharge. Clear communication with the client about any additional costs is essential to maintain a good working relationship.

Additional Fees

Adding lifestyle photos to the end of a propery shoot could add upwards of 15-30mins, or more if it requires more careful planning. As a general rule you should add an additional 20% or more to your existing fee depending on the complexity and risk involved.

If the lifestyle photos are very easy to capture (i.e. taking a picture of the park across the road from the property), it is best not to add any additional fees, as it creates an easy opportunity for you to add extra value for your client. However if the agent wants you to shoot a busy cafe that is 200m walk from the property, you may want to request an additional fee for your effort.

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Photo by Alex Harmuth on Unsplash

Legal and Ethical Considerations

Photographing public spaces, especially areas like cafes, comes with its own set of challenges. It’s important to be mindful of people’s privacy. Seeking permission where appropriate is not just a legal obligation but also a matter of ethical practice. In particular, when photographing areas where children are present, it’s best to avoid showing faces in the images. This approach respects individual privacy and aligns with ethical photography standards.

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Photo by Tyler Nix on Unsplash

Avoiding the Pitfalls

While including lifestyle photos can enhance a property’s appeal, it’s crucial to avoid misrepresenting the property. Photographers should strive to accurately represent the proximity and quality of these amenities. Exaggerating or misleading potential buyers can backfire, leading to distrust and a negative reputation for both the photographer and the real estate agent.

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Photo by Tim Marshall on Unsplash


Real estate lifestyle photos are more than just an add-on; they are a strategic tool that can significantly impact a property’s marketability. When used correctly, they offer a window into the lifestyle a property can offer, making it more appealing to potential buyers. However, photographers must balance the desire to showcase these amenities with ethical considerations and the practicality of capturing them.

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Photo by Moritz Knöringer on Unsplash

As the demand for holistic real estate marketing grows, photographers who can skillfully integrate lifestyle images into their portfolio will find themselves at an advantage. These images not only enhance the property’s appeal but also provide a fuller, more engaging story about what life could be like for the potential buyer.

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