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Video Guidelines

Attractive pictures are critical to a positive first impression of your rental property, and perhaps the most important marketing feature for your property. Start there! Next, consider adding a video to add new and important dimension to your listing by bringing your property to life. Videos evoke an emotional reaction and allow vacationers to experience more of what your property has to offer. They are the next best thing to vacationers actually visiting your vacation home in person prior to booking it.

A video should enhance your photos, not duplicate them. Focus on the strengths of your home and yard and neighborhood. Only use video for larger rooms, so be selective in choosing the rooms or scenes that you want to video.

If you are interested in using our fee-based video production services to video your rental property, contact Becky@WeNeedaVacation.com. We have created over 100 videos for our homeowners.

Be driven by this key principle: A good quality video can enhance your listing's effectiveness, but a poor quality video can detract from it.

Property Videos - three types:

The average length ranges from 30 seconds to 3 minutes.

  1. Dynamic video: All images are taken through a video camera or a digital camera capable of taking video.
  2. Montage video: All images are digital photos electronically linked. Interesting effects allow the video to show emotion and slight movement.
  3. Hybrid video: This is a combination of dynamic and montage videos.

For examples of these three techniques, click here.

Tips for Taking Property Videos

Setting the scene

Make sure that the rooms are clean and picked up. Do not have extraneous items lying around.

Before videoing a room, add a splash of color, such as a vase of flowers or bowl of fruit.

Shoot interior rooms with strong lighting-turn lights on even during daylight hours. At the same time, shoot away from bright windows. Position your camera to pan a room away from the bright window or shoot this room in early morning or late afternoon light.

Avoid including people in your video. Remember, the goal is to have the vacationers envision themselves enjoying your home, rather than seeing you or your family in the picture or video. The exception may be people enjoying the beach.

Avoid rooms with window blinds or many stripes in the wallpaper. The stripes will vibrate in the video.

Take outdoor pictures or videos on a sunny day. Dark, cloudy days will not produce an appealing video.

Beware of walking through a room while recording. It can result in a jittery appearance, which is not pleasing to the eye.

Shoot the video first and then edit your video through a program such as Microsoft's Windows XP Movie Maker or Apple's IMovie (both free).

Shoot your video quietly without narration. It is very difficult to edit a video that has audio. Once your video is edited, you can add music or narration, if you choose.

Try to fill the entire clip with meaningful information - empty space, such as hallways and doorways, is wasted (boring) space. Using quick clips will help move the video along and keep it interesting.

Do not try to shoot the entire video with one take. It's too difficult and the result will be unsatisfactory.

We recommend starting with less than 15 minutes of total footage to edit down to between 30 seconds and 3 minutes. The longer your initial video, the more time you will spend editing it.

If possible show some movement, i.e., waves crashing on the beach or trees or beach grasses blowing in the wind.

Editing Your Videos

Whether you create a dynamic video or a montage made of digital photos, be sure to create a nice transition between clips or pictures by fading in and out. Microsoft Movie Maker or Apple's iMovie enable "effects" that allow you to zoom in and out or brighten or darken the images, etc. Some effects appear to give motion to the digital pictures.

We suggest that you end the video gradually by fading out to black or white, rather than coming to an abrupt stop.

Getting your videos onto your web page

The next step is to upload your video to YouTube. We recommend that you contact Becky@WeNeedaVacation.com to determine the best way to achieve this. We are happy to upload the video for you to our YouTube channel.

Once the video is uploaded to YouTube, you will need the link to the video that YouTube assigns. That link will be used in Video Central to upload. Visit the Video Central link on your Homeowner Center for further details.