Nowadays, it’s easy to put up a property for rent – especially a cottage. More and more families, groups of friends, and even corporate teams are opting for cottage rentals for vacations, hosting events, and more, and their options are plentiful.
In 2020, 75% of vacation rental bookings were made online in the United States. But with so many properties available, how do you set your rental property apart from the rest?
The listing is all any potential renter has to go off of when deciding whether or not to rent your property. This is why it’s so important that your rental description is accurate, exciting, robust, and includes stand-out photography of the interior, exterior and surroundings of your cottage.
Good photos can really make a difference and entice a person to rent your property, while bad photos can deter them and not do your property justice.
Here are a few ways for you to boost the quality of your rental photography and in turn, secure more bookings.
1. Don’t Be Afraid to Seek Outside Help
First, if you don’t own a quality camera or have the ability to rent one, consider securing outside help from a freelance photographer. While this will, of course, include a fee, the ROI is likely worth the cost.
2. Find a Platform That Will Take Photos with You
Yes, many cottages rental platforms require you to take and post your own photos – but not all. Ontario cottage rental provider RentCottage.com is one of few platforms that will actually have staff come to your property to take professional photos to feature not only in your listing, but in their online cottage catalogues and in promotional marketing campaigns.
2. Take Advantage of the Light
For exterior shots of the cottage and its surroundings, professionals recommend taking photos during ‘golden hour.’ Golden hour occurs twice throughout the day: the last hour before the sun has set and the first hour after the sun has risen. The pros covet these windows of time, as the light is gentle and warm and (yes) golden.
For interior shots, take photos during the daytime and turn on the inside lights — lamps included. The brighter the space, the better. Brightness creates a feeling of positivity and liveliness.
3. Be Accurate
The fisheye lens has been around for quite some time. In fact, it was invented in 1906 when it was originally used for photographing the night sky. Today, it has been adopted by budding and professional photographers to heighten the illusion of space.
While the fisheye lens is great for capturing action shots, using it to photograph the interior of your rental cottage could be misleading.
It’s imperative that guests have an accurate idea of the home's size and layout before booking to know it meets their needs. Missing the mark could lead to disgruntled guests with no repeat bookings.
4. Keep Photos Straight
Publishing wobbly photos gives the impression that little care and attention went into taking the shots. This could lead renters to assume little care has been taken elsewhere with the property.
Taking straight photos is relatively easy — by keeping vertical lines vertical. Line up door frames, window frames and solid units of furniture, and you're set for success.
Set your camera on a tripod at five feet in height for optimal shots and for consistency between your photos.
5. Tidy and Declutter
This is especially important if you’re wrapping up renovations or if your cottage has been out of commission for the season. Fluff pillows, straighten photos, rugs and bedding, vacuum floors and wipe down counters.
6. Add Elements of Luxury and Comfort
Lastly, nurture a welcoming atmosphere. Some ways to do this could be setting out champagne with a couple of flutes by the hot tub, lighting the fire, laying out a board game on a coffee table, or placing steaming mugs of coffee on the dock at sunrise.
Pictures are better remembered than words. Make your cottage rental property stand out from the crowd by taking superior photos that are sure to entice many holiday-goers this season.