May 7th, 2015
I regularly have clients who ask me after I deliver my photos if I have a “different angle” of this or that. This has caused me to often re-shoot the particular angle they wanted and it’s costing me time and money. I have tried to touch base at the beginning of a session by saying “I normally shoot one or two angles of a room, however if there is a specific shot you want or if you want me to include more shots of a particular room, please let me know”, to very little effect. I have thought of having pre-printed a checklist of shots to have them sign at the end of my session, but that seems too bureaucratic. I’m wondering if anyone else has best practices to avoid that kind of situation. It seems that many times this problem occurs when my client deals with a particularly controlling seller who is unhappy after the fact that the angles are not exactly what they have in their minds.
First of all, one of the things you are getting paid for as a photographer is to decide which angles are the best to shoot each room from. Make sure you’ve developed this skill and then be confident in your ability and skill in doing that. Also, make it clear that if agents or sellers want to give input to you about the shoot the time for that is upfront, not when the photos are delivered. Don’t be intimidated into reshooting for free to when they had an opportunity but didn’t give specific input upfront. This is irrational behavior and if you do it once it will happen again! My guess is that you are not communicating clearly or strongly enough about getting input upfront.
Scott Hargis suggests that every real estate shoot start with a 15 to 20 minute walk through of the property to plan what the shots will be. This is a great basic practice. The idea is that you plan where you are going to need to spend most of your time in the shoot. For picky listing agents (I know some) offer to have them accompany you on a shot planning walk through when you are planning and deciding what angles to shoot. Then they will know what’s going to happen and have a chance to give input.
How do others manage this issue?