Wayne Capili’s Presentation On Getting Started In Real Estate Photography

December 30th, 2016

Last week on Christmas eve Wayne Capili posted this little Spark presentation on Facebook about getting started in real estate photography.

While I’ve done posts about Wayne’s real estate gear before I think this little presentation is important because: Continue Reading »

What Is The Easiest Method Of Real Estate Photo Delivery for Non-Technical Realtors?

December 29th, 2016

Bill in VA asks:

Has there been any sampling of members as to what program(s) are being used most often for file transfer of final images to realtor clients? I am familiar with Dropbox and Hightail. What other programs exist and what programs are easiest to use for non-technical agents?

The reason for my question is that I am finding that many agents, who are not tech savvy,  are not comfortable with programs mentioned above.

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What Should Real Estate Photographers Charge for Rental Photos?

December 28th, 2016

Chris in NJ asks:

I have been asked to do a handful of vacation rental properties. I’m not sure if these should be priced differently than a house for sale. I’m assuming the cost should be higher since the photos will be used longer. But do you charge double? Triple? I’m not really sure. Any advice?

My guess is that the majority of real estate photographers shooting rental property photos charge the same for shooting rentals as homes for sale and completely blow off the licensing differences. Here are some things to think about: Continue Reading »

New Lightroom Reference Feature Helps Color Matching

December 27th, 2016

Kelvin in MT says:

The new version of Lightroom cc has a left/right panel for comparative views, making matching color and exposure unbelievably great!  If you’re shooting a bracketed sequence with flash and ambient frames, color matching is considerably easier than ever before. It can also be used to match all the flash frames, for instance, to each other, using one frame as the reference, and matching the rest to it. It’s a fantastic improvement!

The tutorial above illustrates what Kelvin is referring to.

Real Estate Photographers Need To Look at Adobe Spark!

December 26th, 2016

I have to admit that I have been aware of Adobe Spark for a while (I think it has been available since May of 2016) but until Wayne Capili sent me this example of how he used Spark Page to build a tour of a property that he shot in the Oakland Hills, I completely missed the potential of Adobe Spark for presenting real estate images.

Wayne’s example speaks for itself but here is the essence of Adobe Spark:

  1. Spark is quick and easy to use.
  2. Spark is free.
  3. There are three different Spark Apps, Spark Page, Spark Post, Spark Video. The same functionality is available on laptops/desktops.
  4. The results are mobile friendly.

Real estate photographers should have a look at Spark Page and Spark Video because it’s a quick and easy way to produce very modern, elegant slide shows and marketing materials.

How Should I Organize My Real Estate Photography Business?

December 21st, 2016

Colin recently asked:

I’ve been reviewing your site for a few days now and I can’t seem to find an article that talks about how to actually structure your business like, licenses, state registration, EIN number, DBA or things like that. Would you be able to point me to an article or explain the best way to structure the business?

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How Do Real Estate Photographers Determine The Value Of Relicensed Photos?

December 20th, 2016

Tony in Kansas City says:

I’m looking for advice on what the value of licensing real estate images to third parties is. Scott Hargis’ latest business video was excellent and sparked questions on how I should be valuing images for third parties. I’ve looked through ASMP’s articles on licensing and have looked at a few calculators for licensing but there is a lack of detailed information on how to license images specifically within the real estate photography niche.

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Should I Leave a “Thank you for allowing us to photograph your home today!

December 19th, 2016

Kimi in MN asks:

I am wondering if any photographers ever leave a business card or “Thank You” note behind after shooting a property? I am debating leaving something saying “Thank you for allowing us to photograph your home today! Best of wishes to you!” but not sure if I should just have our logo or contact info on the note, like a business card? I hesitate because the agent is our client and we do NOT want our client’s client contacting us directly. I feel it’s a nice added value gesture on the agent’s behalf, although not necessary. Thoughts?

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Have a “How Am I doing?” Conversation Occasionally With Your Clients

December 18th, 2016

Peter in Seattle says:

Without sounding too thin skinned, How would you gracefully ask an agent if you have been fired? This came up when I was looking at my agent’s listings and found one or two homes that I did not photograph. These were over $400K homes, not re-pos. I know that it is a good idea for an agent to have more than one photographer but if you have not heard from them for while and find out that somebody else took the shots I want to call them and ask “What the hell is going on?” “Why didn’t you call me?”
Any ideas?

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Zillow Is Now Allowing Professionally Created Video To Be Added to Listings

December 16th, 2016

Michele in Annapolis reports that you can now get professional quality edited video on Zillow listings. She says:

Hi all: Zillow is now allowing professionally created video to be added to listings. Agents or Zillow photographers must contact their reps, submit the youtube link via email and pay $149. A bit steep, but at least we have an option. They place it in the same position as the video taken with the app. Having video increases the ranking. Our videos also appear in our virtual tour link also. Having video increases the ranking. No getting around Zillow.

Click here or on the post image to see an example. Finally! Yes, a bit steep indeed!

Do Our Portfolio Websites Set Unrealistic Expectations?

December 15th, 2016

Rich in SC asks:

Do our websites set unrealistic expectations? I’ve shot quite a few homes now and made the transition from HDR shooting to Flash. I’ve taken some of my best images and incorporated them into my marketing and it’s worked well. For the vast majority of shoots, my clients have loved what I provide. I try to provide consistent results as best I can, however, every now and then a Realtor or homeowner will expect that Architectural Image while paying Real Estate prices. Any effective way to deal with that? There’s obviously a balance in time and money that needs to be played out.

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What Are The Mysterious Lights In The Sky Over Seattle?

December 14th, 2016

shubumiLightsNote: I wasn’t going to do this post again this year but I got several requests for it. I guess this subject has become a PFRE Christmas tradition.

I put my Christmas header photo up on the blog recently. This header image has an interesting historical story that goes with it. PFRE blog readers have been trying to explain the pattern of 5 lights (one red and 4 green) are in the top center above the two tallest high rise buildings in downtown Seattle (click on the image to the right to see a larger image). I did a post on this almost every year since 2009. After many years of discussion, Aaron Leitz finally solved the mystery in 2014. Continue Reading »

Voting Started For 2016 PFRE Photographer Of The Year

December 13th, 2016

Notice: The reader poll for PFRE photographer of the year has been discontinued and will NOT be used because it has been Hacked. Only PFRE Jurors’s votes will be used to determine the PFRE photographer of the year.

Right now (12/13 @ 8 PM Pacific) voting starts for the 2016 PFRE photographer of the year. The poll above is a new thing this year that lets readers cast a vote. The sum total of all the votes cast by readers will only carry the voting weight of one PFRE juror but at least it gives some input to readers.

Voting will close at the end of 2016 UTC. See the UTC clock on the left sidebar. There is a page that lists all the contestants and their winning monthly photos here. It doesn’t matter if you vote on the poll above or the one on the POTY2016 page. It’s the same poll.

What Are The Important Current Trends In Real Estate Marketing?

December 12th, 2016

I’ve had a number of discussions recently on what the trends are in real estate marketing.

Rob in Boston asked:

Is there any unbiased information of some trends happening in real estate photography? In other words, is there a paradigm shift  – moving away from stills and doing more video? Conversely, keeping stills and using 3D technology such as Goiguide or Matterport?
My biggest client  invited me to speak to her team and she wants to make sure she is not missing the boat on some real estate photography trends.

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What’s More Powerful Than A SB-900 And More Portable Than An Alienbee?

December 11th, 2016

n-flashZoltan in Miami asks:

I am using and SB-800 and an SB-900 to get my job done and when they are not powerful enough I use the Alienbee 1600.

I photograph many luxury condos with direct ocean view so for me the the interior light needs to balance the intense exterior light (Miami).

Do you know of any light which is more powerful then the SB-900 but more portable then the Alienbee? I often use the Alienbee with the vagabond Mini powerpack on my shoulder so I don’t have to search for outlets but the setup is heavy for me.

Continue Reading »