February 25th, 2015
Roy asked the following question about real estate photography rescheduling:
A number of times in the past I have had to deal with Realtors that are having some work done on the home (staging, repair, remodeling, clean up, landscaping, etc…) and they want to schedule me for the shoot immediately (with no time to waste) after the work is done. More often than not, the scheduled work is running off schedule so they call me to reschedule. This shows no respect for my time while they want things done at the snap of a finger. How can I communicate to them to book me when the job is 100% done without sounding like a jerk? I thought of imposing a rescheduling fee but I think they would just give the job to someone else who is more willing to flop around with their volatile scheduling.
Your question is a tough one. Having been a listing agent with my wife for a 10 years I totally appreciate the listing agents situation. Home sellers always want the property on the market yesterday! And getting all the required work done is frequently a struggle and never happens as planned. Agents wanting a shoot done “at the snap of a finger” is frankly the nature of this business.
As a listing photographer, you are on the end of a high pressure chain of schedules if there’s work to be done on the property before it goes on the market. Some agents are going to be better than others with these managing these situations but the likelihood rescheduling is high.
I don’t think you are going to make this problem go away by just talking to agents in the right way. It seems to me there are two choices to dealing with agent rescheduling:
- Establish rescheduling guidelines: If you are don’t like dealing with rescheduling or you are loosing business because agents reschedule at the last minute then establish guidelines and fees that discourage this behavior. Yes, you may loose a few agents.
- Make rescheduling a customer service feature: If you aren’t really loosing a bunch of business because of rescheduling, loosen up, be flexible and turn this issue into a customer service feature. That is, be the best in your market at dealing with rescheduling at the last minute. This is what listing agents really want and need… do a shoot when they snap their fingers! It could actually get you more business. Word gets around a real estate office quickly about contractors that are easy to deal with.
What are others experiences and approaches to dealing with rescheduling shoots.