News Items For Real Estate Photographers

July 20th, 2009

Washington State expanding sales tax to digital products on 7/26/2009: Mike Martin sent me a link to some new sales tax rules announced by the Washington State Department of Revenue. To me this looks like Washington real estate photographers will now have to charge sales tax even if they don’t supply their client with a tangible produce (CD). State budgets are tight these days and states are looking for every bit of income they can find.

Legal terms of video hosting services compared: I ran across this comparison of video hosting terms and conditions that Markus Weiland compiled. This is of interest because it demonstrates the wide variety of licensing terms that you agree to by uploading photos and videos to hosting and sharing sites. You should carefully read the terms and conditions before you upload your valuable assets to these sites!

PFRE Idol Images Ready For Voting: This month’s PFRE Idol images are ready for voting. See the images here. Cast your vote for the best image here.

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5 Responses to “News Items For Real Estate Photographers”

  • FYI,
    Just after receiving Larry’s email update regarding video hosting I received an invitation to attend the “Online Video Platform Summit” at:
    It is co sponsored by Adobe and many of you will recognize some of the providers involved.

    Best Regards,

  • […] rest is here: Photography For Real Estate » News Items For Real Estate Photographers #arkayne { background: transparent; text-align: left; vertical-align: top; margin: 5px 0px; […]

  • Wow- sales tax on digital goods? This will absolutely be a menace if it spreads among other states, especially with the video market.

  • Photography doesn’t have to be considered a digital good, if you can deliver the product on a CD…. Photographers don’t need to worry about this, unless they are selling “downloads” on their site…. This is for items like music, videos, and stock photos sold directly on your site where customers can pay and download them. Emailing links to your customers so they can download your photos doesn’t apply, and simply providing photography services does not fall under this classification either, so my opinion is that this article posting will do nothing but scare people who happen to work as photographers….

    This issue is a tax on the downloads, and it is not a sales tax… WA state photographers already have to pay a 1% B&O tax. If you want to sell stock photos digitally, simply put them on a website that will do it for you…. As long as YOU aren’t running the website, you are exempt from this tax.

  • As a photograher that simply provides photography and photo editing services, you DO NOT have to charge sales tax because it is a service, and service companies and sole propreitors are exempt. The only time you need to charge sales tax is when you sell tangible prints directly to your clients. If you want to sell prints to your customers but don’t want to have to mess with all of the sales tax collection, reporting, payment hassles simply put your photos on a site like, and let your customers order the prints directly from them… They’ll handle all of the print work and customer service, mailing of photos to your customers, and in return they get 15% of your markup…. Markup enough profit, and it won’t matter since you’re saving all the hassles of sales tax collection and payment to the state, since the printing company will do that for you. This download tax is a totally seperate thing, and only applies if you are selling downloads… Bill is right, the only thing a photographer in WA needs to worry about is paying their B&O tax to the state, in addition to the self employment taxes, etc…. If you use turbo tax, its a cinch to take care of. Don’t be fooled into thinking there’s another tax to pay, unless of course you are selling downloads directly on your website. Good luck and happy shooting…. Mike

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