If you’re over 50, you no doubt have shoeboxes full of photos from the past decades. Sadly, that’s where most of them stay.

When you’re downsizing, it’s time to make some tough decisions. You want to reduce your possessions to those you need and those you love. And as much as we might love our photos, they occupy valuable space. So how can you still enjoy your photos without sorting them into massive photo albums?

Scanning your photos for the future

In Sydney, you’ll find a number of businesses that will take your beloved photos and scan them to a disk or thumb drive.

What is ‘scanning’ and why should you do it?

All photos will deteriorate over time. Colours fade, the paper on which they’re printed becomes brittle, and detail becomes more obscure. A photo-digitising business will ‘scan’ (like taking a photo of the photo) your precious memories but they’re now in a digital format.

Once you’ve had your photos digitised, they can be backed up to the cloud. If you have an iPad or another type of tablet, you could even have your photos copied over to it.

Once you’ve digitised your photos, you can:

  • Share them easily with other family members and friends.
  • Enlarge them so you can spot details you couldn’t on a hard-copy version.
  • Keep a back-up copy in the cloud for extra peace of mind.

When should you digitise your photos?

If you’re considering downsizing, it’s best to start digitising your photos as early as possible. If you’re like most of us, you have boxes of photos stored all over the house. The first task is to sort out what you want to have scanned and what you no longer need.

We suggest that you scan all the ones you want to keep, but reserve your ‘best’ photos for the family album.

What are the different methods of scanning?

If you have a lot of time on your hands, and don’t get bored easily, then you could buy a hand scanner and do the scanning yourself. However, as one who’s gone down this road and given up after one day, I suggest that you send your photos to a reputable photo-scanning agency.

There are two commercial methods:

  • Bulk scanning: This is the cheaper option. Your photos are fed into an automatic scanner and digitised. This method is fine as long as you have photos of a similar size and you don’t need any to be touched up. Bulk photo scanning businesses in Sydney include Oscans and Photo Digital Services.
  • Hand scanning: This method is slightly more expensive but essential if you have photos that are damaged, fragile or precious. With hand scanning, the operator will correct colour and orientation and fill in damaged areas (where possible). Each photo is placed on a scanner bed, rather than fed through automatically by machine so there’s little to no risk of damage. Hand scanning services in Sydney include Scanpix and Photo Digital Services.

Remember to back up

Kevin Mullock from Photo Digital Services noted that the most important aspect of digitising photos is to back them up to the cloud. Even with your digitised photos, there’s always the risk of theft or damage to the device on which they’re stored. So back up, back up, back up.

Once you have those photos living in the cloud and on your iPad or tablet, you’ll have many years of pleasure with your memories.


At LOCATION, we’re experts in helping people in the Sutherland Shire to downsize. Please call us at any time for help and sound advice.

Free downsizers guide

Michael & Rhiff Larkings

As a specialist team, focused on Caringbah South and the surrounding suburbs, we've been providing real estate services for over 20 years. With numerous real estate awards to our name, we're in the top echelon of licensed real estate agents in the Sutherland Shire. We regularly set new street, suburb and area sales records. Most importantly, we understand that real estate is a ‘people’ business where the development of relationships and trust, with both our clients and purchasers, is vital to achieving your all-important sales result.

Get in touch

Discover what your home or investment property is worth in the current real estate market. Whether you are looking for advice about a future sale or seeking out your ideal home, our team are on hand to assist.


Suites 4 & 5, 305 Kingsway,
Caringbah 2229 NSW Australia