September 8th, 2015
My name is Elsa and I ran into your website today as I was doing some research on the startup of a real estate photography business. I am 19 years old and I want to get this going as soon as possible. The earlier the better right. it would be really great if you could give me some insight as to what camera I should use and if it’s worth buying the more expensive camera. I have been doing some research on the market around me and it seems there is not a large amount of competition but it is there.
First of all with real estate photography you should first think about wide-angle lenses because they are a more important than the camera body you choose. Here are some factors that can help you decide where to start:
- You can do a fine job of shooting real estate with an APS-C size DSLR.
- Over the last 5 or so years, the Canon 10-22mm lens has been the most popular lens for shooting real estate. See the poll at photographyforrealestate.net/lenses.
- About a year ago Canon introduced the Canon 10-18mm for $299 USD. It is quite high quality for the price as compared to the older Canon 10-22mm and other non-canon wide-angle lenses. See the review here. As indicated in the review, the Canon 10-22mm is a little better for twice the price and the Tokina has a wider maximum aperture for about $100 more than the 10-18mm. The other popular real estate photography lens, the Sigma 10-20 is $200 more than the Canon 10-18mm.
- So I think the high quality of the Canon 10-18mm and it’s low price become a motivation for starting out with a Canon DLSR.
If one chooses the Canon 10-18mm as a wide-angle lens here are a couple of alternative DSLR bodies to go with it depending on what your budget is:
- Lowest price: Canon Xti (used) + Canon 10-18mm = $443 USD
- Medium price and latest technology: Canon T6i + Canon 10-18mm = $1048 USD
- Update 9/10: Amazon and B&H are both offering a big discounts through 10/4 on the Canon T5. B&H is offering it for $399 so with the 10-18mm it’s only $698. Amazing for a good DSLR plus a 18-55mm and quality wide-angle lens!
In conclusion: my recommendation would be the Canon T6i and 10-18mm if you can afford it. Remember that there are many other expenses involved in getting started in real estate photography. Things like, tripod, tripod head, flashes, flash triggers, Lightroom software, extra batteries, memory cards, insurance etc. Expect to spend $2,000 to $3,000 for startup costs.