How to Plan, Film and Edit a Property Video with your Phone

Updated: Nov 17

I love houses, all my life I've loved houses. When I was younger my mother and I moved so many times so most of my memories are driving around looking at different properties. Now I love filming properties and I think there's a great opportunity, whether you're a real estate agent or you have an Airbnb that you want to advertise, to create your own videos to help show the viewers how the property really looks.


In this video, I’ll show you how to plan a property video using some simple tips, how to film using just phones, and how to edit using a simple and affordable app.




1. Deciding the Video Style

The first thing that you want to do when you're planning a property video, is to decide the type of video that you want to create. There are many different styles of property videos that you could make but I'd suggest starting off simple, with a one-take walk-through video. This is where you simply walk through the different areas of the house. You could upload this as is or you could bring it into the Quik App, speed it up and add some music underneath.


The second type of video that you could create is just a series of shots stationary shots and then edit them together using Quik and the app will stitch the shots together, add music underneath, and then you've got a nice short video showing off each room.


If you wanted to get super advanced later, you could potentially create a voiceover video - you'd have to write a script, get shots to match and use more advanced editing software. Or you could do a piece to camera in each of the different rooms - but for something like that you'd need a microphone and potentially a camera person working with you.


For this video, I'm just going to focus on the One-Take Walkthrough and the Montage to Music.


2. Understanding the Property’s Aspect

Once you've decided the style of video that you want to make, it's important to understand where the sun is going to be at different times of the day so that you can choose the best time of day to visit the property.


If you can go to the property in advance of filming, then you can use an app called Sun Surveyor Lite and it's going to tell you where the sun is going to be at different times of the day. If you can't get to the property in advance, then you could go to Google Maps and try and figure out which way it's facing and determine the time of day to film based on that.


3. Preparing the Property

Next, we want to prepare the property by cleaning it up and making sure that each room is tidy and free of clutter. You’ll also want to make each room look as bright as possible by turning on any lights and opening all the curtains. The difference that extra light can make to a video or images can be staggering.


If possible and do some rehearsals especially if it's a one-take walkthrough. Make sure that you have a route in mind and there's nothing going to be in your way that you might potentially fall over!


4. Preparing your Gear

For this video, we'll just be using a phone so what I mean by prepare it is to make sure that it's fully charged, and you've gone through and deleted as much footage or freed up as much storage as possible.


I would suggest getting and bringing a lens cloth with you and cleaning the lens with the lens cloth. Cleaning the lens can make a huge difference to the clarity of your footage, it’s almost like the jump from Standard Definition (SD) to High Definition (HD).


You will also want to make sure that you're getting the most out of the phone that you're filming on. I'm filming on an iPhone 12 pro max so I'll go into the camera settings in the phone and make sure that I'm recording at 4k. It just means that there's more information in each shot compared to just filming in high definition - which should, in theory, make your shots look better.


5. Filming Tips for Walkthrough Videos

If you're doing a One-Take Walkthrough video, you might need to have a few rehearsal takes before you actually get it right. I like to start at the outside of the property, from the furthest angle or a different angle before I get around to the main door.


I also like to use the widest angle lens that I can. The iPhone 12 Pro Max has three lenses, so I always make sure to choose the ultra-wide. The beauty of the wide-angle lens is that it keeps the shots much steadier than any of the other lenses.


Then I walk around the property, trying to keep the phone as steady as possible, and avoiding any reflections in mirrors or windows. It’s a good idea to stop and pause for between five and ten seconds at certain points of view so that the viewers don’t feel like they're being rushed through the property – this is especially important if you plan on speeding it up later.


When I get inside the property, I keep my back close to the walls (hug the walls ) and walk backwards when required and then pause at corners where I can take in the entire room.


I love these One-Take Walkthrough videos because they really put the property into perspective. When you see different photos, it can be hard to understand how the different rooms are relative to each other, so these are a great way to allow your viewer to almost feel like they're touring through the property with you.


6. Filming Tips for Montage Videos

The second style of property video that we can easily make with our phones is a Montage Video of different shots in different rooms. When you're making a montage video I would suggest doing it room by room and in the sequence of rooms that you want to be shown in the final video. You can always rearrange the shots later in the edit, but shooting in order will save time.


I'll tuck into each corner, and I'll go try different shots using different lenses. I'll record for five Mississippi seconds and then I'll stop record before I switch. The reason that I'm not recording different shots in one take is that when I go to the edit I'm going to see the thumbnail of each shot that I take, so if I get a wide shot and then I switch to a close up in the same shot then I'll probably forget that I have a different shot in there.


So after I get shots from one corner, I’ll move and do the same from each corner of the room. Then when I’m editing, I can decide which angle looks best or I might use a few different angles.


7. Editing with Quik

Now that you've successfully planned and filmed your video, it's time to start editing using nothing more than your phone. The editing app that I recommend highly is called Quik and it’s owned by GoPro.


There’s an older Quik App and a newer Quik App. The older app was completely free, and it was amazing. The newer app is pretty much the same as the older app - it has some enhanced features but now they're starting to charge for it. Initially, I was really disappointed by this however the charge is €1.99 a month or about €10 a year, so when you think about how much a cup of coffee is and how much this app will actually do for you then I can completely justify the cost.


There are other ‘free; apps out there and I have tried most of them, but they are either not free or don’t have the same features and functions as Quik. This Quik App is almost like an automatic editor. It will make cuts to the beat of the music, allow you to choose from different themes, add text and so much more.



Editing a Walkthrough Video and Montage Video

It’s best to watch the video for this part so that you can see exactly which buttons to press and how it all comes together.



THE FINAL RESULTS

By now you should have two videos saved to your phone: a One-Take Walkthrough and a Montage to Music and below are the final videos from the property we filmed at.





I hope that this video has given you some confidence and, I guess, some tips that might inspire you to go out and create these videos for your property.


Thanks a million for watching and I'll see you next time.