How to make your real estate video stand out and attract more buyers
Back in 2016, it was reported that real estate listings which included a video got a whopping 403% more inquiries than those which didn’t use videos. In 2022, real estate video marketing has become such an essential part of doing business that customers expect listings to include property tour videos or presentations.
That being said, however, not all videos are created equal. Since hiring a video production company to record your real estate video tours is too expensive for most people that are trying to break into the real estate market, we’ve decided to make this guide and help you create better real estate videos of your own.
How to make a video for real estate
There are 4 main steps to making good real estate videos:
- Planning and writing your video.
- Recording all the footage.
- Editing your real estate video.
- Publishing it.
Now that we’ve established a workflow for making real estate videos, we’ll go through each step and guide you through what you need to do in order to make your videos better!
Step 1: Planning and writing a script for your real estate video
Having a script (or at least an outline) for your real estate video before you start recording it always leads to less time spent editing and yields much better results. Rushed or improvised videos tend to look unprofessional and aren’t going to do you any favors when it comes to winning customers over.
Plan your videos like a virtual tour
Plan a route that you’re going to take through the property and showcase each room along the way, just like you would during an in-person house tour. Make sure to write this down so you can reference it later when you edit all of the clips together.
You should also keep this handy while recording so you can get all the room transition footage you need.
Make a storyboard
A storyboard consists of a series of sketches or pictures. Its purpose is to break down a video into individual panels and make it easier for you to visualize what the final video will look like.
Making a storyboard based on your script will help you make sure that your real estate video tour is coherent and easy to follow. Another advantage of having a storyboard is that it provides yet another reference to help you get all the shots you need when recording your video.
Include some information about the community
The house itself might be the main selling point, but don’t forget to include a little bit of information about the neighborhood as well. Make sure to mention good schools, movie theaters or other local attractions that are close to the home.
Plan on getting some shots of the neighborhood and other surrounding areas to give potential buyers a better idea of what the atmosphere is like over there.
Aim for 5 minutes or less
People’s attention spans are getting shorter and shorter, which is why you shouldn’t go on with your real estate video for too long. Five minutes is a safe bet, and even so you might find that people back out of the video long before it’s over.
Of course, this isn’t set in stone. If you’re trying to sell a deluxe property, you can make the videos a bit longer and go into more detail showing the little touches that make it a premium place to live in. Given the amount of money involved and the limited number of options, that audience is a lot less likely to tune out of your presentation.
Step 2: Recording your real estate video
Get rid of any clutter and make sure everything is clean
We know that this isn’t really your responsibility as an agent, but if you’re trying to sell a place that has been lived in, talk to the current owners and ask them to make sure that everything is clean before you come in to record. Little details such as light switches that have gone yellow with time or dusty door frames don’t really stand out during a visit but can stick out like a sore thumb on video.
Similarly, try to get rid of as much clutter as possible before shooting the video. Rearrange a bit so that decorations and other small pieces of furniture don’t take the viewer’s attention away from the main selling points of the property.
Good lighting is key
Everything looks better when it’s lit properly! Houses are no exception. If you can, try to get a ring light and use it to brighten up any darker corners when recording.
Using natural light is the ideal way to go, but it’s very dependent on the weather. The best days to record are sunny with just a few clouds. Avoid filming your real estate video tours on cloudy days when the sky is gray. The lack of natural light will most likely result in a depressing looking video, even if the property is otherwise perfectly fine.
Use a tripod (or a camera with Image Stabilization)
Unless you’re an experienced videographer, holding the phone/camera in your hands while moving around the property will result in a shaky video. The found footage, shaky-cam aesthetic might be very effective in horror films, but it’s not something that will convince people to buy a house.
That’s why you should place your camera down (or phone) on a tripod and take most of your shots that way. Most tripods have special mounting systems that allow you to pan the camera around or even slide it back and forth smoothly, so you can still get some dynamic shots if you want to.
There is also the option of using the Image Stabilization option on your recording device, but the results may vary. Digital Stabilization tends to produce a more blurry, wobbly image than Optical Stabilization, so keep that in mind and check your camera specs if you want to go for this option.
Turn on the ceiling fans
If the property has ceiling fans, turning them on at a low speed setting is a great way to insert some movement into the shot. It makes the place feel a little more alive without taking people’s attention away from the main subject.
Best camera settings for real estate videos
A flagship phone from the last few years, such as an iPhone, Samsung Galaxy or Google Pixel is definitely good enough for recording real estate videos. Using a DSLR or Mirrorless camera isn’t 100% necessary, but it will definitely offer better overall results.
If you have a dedicated camera that you can record your real estate video tours with, here are some of the settings you should use:
- Use a wide lens, like a 16mm or 35mm. A wide lens allows you to get as much of the room in frame as possible. Don’t overdo it though. Using a fisheye lens to make the rooms look bigger will distort the image and make people think you’re trying to scam them.
- Set your camera to an f-stop value between 4 and 5.6. This way, the entire room is going to be in focus.
- If the high f value leads to low brightness, up the ISO and lower the shutter speed to around 60 per second (assuming you’re filming in 30 fps).
Step 3: How to edit a real estate video
If you’re new to video editing, having to combine all of your different shots into a coherent real estate video tour can seem like a daunting task at first, but don’t feel discouraged! Nowadays, there are plenty of online video editing tools available that will allow you to put professional looking videos together in a matter of minutes.
Online video editors like Flixier run smoothly even on laptops and make creating real estate videos as simple as putting together a slideshow presentation. With that in mind, let’s move on to some tips that you should keep in mind when editing your real estate video:
Don’t overuse transitions
When you first get into video editing, it’s tempting to try and make every shot transition look different. A good real estate video is supposed to be easy to follow and allow your viewers to gauge the layout of the property you’re presenting.
Using too many transitions is going to confuse and annoy viewers, so try to stick with basic cuts and crossfades.
Display useful information on the screen
Even if you’re already narrating the video, it’s a good idea to have some text pop-up in the lower third of the screen to give people useful information about the room you’re presenting. It only has to stay on for a few seconds and it can include things like size, furnishings or utilities.
This is a great way to not quickly communicate essential information to the viewer without having to artificially inflate the video duration.
Include your logo, name and contact information
Make a short, simple intro to start off your video. It should only last a few seconds and display your name and logo. This is very easy to do with a tool like Flixier and will go a long way towards consolidating your brand image once you start posting more of these videos to your YouTube channel.
You should also have your contact information easily available on screen. Feel free to display your phone number and email address in a corner at all times, just make sure it’s small enough that it doesn’t distract from the rest of the video.
Don’t be afraid to use music
Even if you’re narrating the video yourself, a bit of music to set the mood can help a lot, especially if it matches the overall look and feel of the property you’re trying to sell.
You can subscribe to services like AudioJungle, Artist.io or Soundstripe to find royalty free tracks that you can use in your videos. Alternatively, Flixier (our online video editor) gives you access to hundreds of royalty free music tracks free of charge. All you have to do is drag them over from the library in order to add them to your video.
Add a Call to Action
Don’t end your video with a simple fade to black. Tell your viewers how they can contact your or your agency, remind them to schedule a viewing and tell them to subscribe to your channel or browse your website in order to browse through more listings.
Step 4: Publishing your real estate video
Once your video is edited, it’s time to publish it. This step might seem pretty straight-forward, but you still need to keep some things in mind if you want it to reach as many people as possible.
Upload your video to YouTube
We see a lot of real estate agents make great video tours that they only post on their agency’s website or on real estate aggregators. Don’t do that! Post your real estate video tour to YouTube instead.
Google often displays YouTube videos above links in the search results, so posting your video to YouTube can be a huge boost to your SEO and allow it to reach more people.
That’s not to mention the whole new audience that can discover your listings in the suggested video tab after watching other real estate tour videos on the platform.
Put the general address in the video title
More often than not, people use Google to find properties for sale in a certain area. Having the name of the street and general area in the title will tell Google that your video is relevant and should be displayed in the search results, resulting in more views and more prospective buyers.
Add your contact information at the top of the video description
When watching videos on YouTube, you’ll notice that only the first 200 characters of a video’s description are visible by default. To read the rest, you need to click on Show More.
Because of that, you should always include your contact information in those first 200 characters. That way, a person that sees your real estate video tour and wants to schedule a viewing can immediately glance down to the video description and contact you.
Don’t ignore TikTok and other social media platforms
You might think that TikTok doesn’t appeal to your target demographic, but the truth is there are plenty of real estate TikTok videos right now sitting at over one million views.
Since online video editors like Flixier make it incredibly easy to turn landscape videos into vertical clips, you really have nothing to lose by cutting your longer house tours into shorter clips and sharing them on TikTok or Instagram. This is especially true for properties that are particularly interesting or unique, since those have a bigger chance of getting shared and becoming viral.
Just keep in mind that TikTok videos need to be under 1 minute, so you’ll need to cut quite a bit of content from your regular YouTube videos in order to share them on the platform.
We hope you found this article helpful! We wish you good luck in your real estate journey and encourage you to give Flixier a shot if you need a fast and easy tool to edit your real estate videos.