Real Estate Photography News

October 21st, 2014 wants to help RE photographers market to agents: Within the last year I’ve encountered several companies that have a business model of getting in between the RE photographer and the agent. This is an example of one. At this point I can’t tell which of these are of use to RE photographers and which is aren’t. In general, beware of companies that get between you and your clients and charge processing and transaction fees. Thanks to Todd McIntosh for this link.

Transport Canada just released new info regarding drones: Wow, Transport Canada appears to be on the ball and engaged and coming up with rational and effective regulations. This article explains how to get a Special Flight Operations Certificate if you fly a UAV commercially or heavier than 35 kilograms.  Thanks to Tony Boros for this link.

How to Hire a Real Estate Photographer: Expert Tips for Agents: I think there is a lot of good advice in this article on what photographers should be asking their clients. Thanks to TA Wilson for this link.

3D Listing Photos To Simmer Up Real Estate Marketing: This is indirectly a pitch buy Redfin for Matterport as we talked about last month. Also in this article is reference to another study: “recent study by VHT Studios, one of the largest real estate photography firms in the United States, found that homes with professional interior photos sold 32 percent faster than those that didn’t have an expert behind the lens.” Thanks to Dave Williamson for this link.


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7 Responses to “Real Estate Photography News”

  • My response to the UAV Canadian approach to regulation makes a lot of sense to me and it appears to aim to respond to the ever and fast changing character of the industry with the speed of technology developments. I would support such an approach in the US. There is actually a lot more to know and learn about “piloting” these things than many manufacturers disclose. Just watch the many videos on line and you realize that recalibrating compasses, updating firm ware, determining if enough satellites are being picked up for stable control and so on. If these machines are used irresponsibly or with ignorance, they could be dangerous, but when used with training and common sense, they are a marvel of technology and provide another tool in the bag for us RE photographers. So I would support a capability test before granting a license, sort of like a mini driving test to make sure operators know what they are doing. This would by definition that there be some facilities for training in a safe environment.

  • I wouldn’t advise anyone to go with AgentMarketing. I liked the look of their product, but I don’t think they have a good handle on the real estate photography business. They want to take %25 of every listing you shoot in order to pay for the service… that could be a huge chunk of money for a service that doesn’t charge that of anyone… especially if you have a strong month or year of appointments. They don’t offer photogs any sort of package deal or pay as you go or even a monthly package price…. Your appointments are handled through their system and then they pay you weekly for what you have done after they take their cut.

  • @Marshall – Thanks for sharing your experiences. I was hoping to find some one like your self that had actual experience with them.

  • Adcorp is one of the largest branding, media, add & agent marketing companies doing exactly this in Australia. In RE their main national customer in Aust being Colliers RE. Many large RE agencies are moving away from their own in house marketing personnel and taking up with companies like this. They have a large pool of photographers and pricing etc to choose from but will sometimes use a particular photographer if the RE agent insists they use a photographer of their liking.

  • @larry – After chatting with them online about their pricing and such and letting them know that it wasn’t ideal for what I think is the typical real estate photographer, they took my number and one of their founders/CEO’s called me to talk about it. Evidently this photographer side of things they are doing is new to them and they are wanting feedback about it so that they can better tailor it to suit the industry. He said that they had designed it working with a large photography firm there, but admitted that they had never talked to anyone else outside of that scope. I expressed to him that most of us are not large firms with 20 photogs on staff doing hundreds of homes per month. (He was a bit surprised… I don’t know why). He is wanting me to reply in email about what I think is better suited to fit a larger scope of RE Photogs in the business and how that would look. I am replying today with some things that I think could make his services better… whether or not they listen and take action to gain a larger scope of RE Photogs is what I am curious to see. They have a very slick product and many tools, but the way they have it structured makes little sense to the majority of people in our industry I think. I may refer him to this site and to yourself if you would like to help them with any feedback and input. Would you be up for that? I will not mention you until you give the ok.

  • Be careful with relying on the VHT “study”, their fine print says ” VHT Studios compared Days-on-Market for VHT-photographed homes versus all other single-family homes sold during that period.” I am pretty sure there are professional real estate photographers that were lumped into the “all other” category. Great photography is one of a dozen of reasons that contribute to a property selling faster than another.

  • @Rohnn – You’re correct, but most of these “studies” have some sort of slant. It’s still nice to point agents to them as an argument to get hired.

    The value of good quality professional photography to agents is the building of their brand more than a higher selling price or fewer days on the market. An agent working under a broker might clear 1.5% on each sale which means that a home has to sell for substantially more for them to realize a meaningful increase in profit. Knocking 5 weeks off of DOM as the article claims is fantastic. I am using “fantastic” in it’s classical meaning of hard-to-believe. In a strong buyers market, it could be the case if all other things are equal. I have seen other studies that show professionally photographed homes take an extra week on market to sell. Better images can lead to more listings for an agent. It’s one of the few things that can differentiate the agent from all of the others that a seller will understand.

    The goal of good marketing is to get a potential customer to take action. Agents don’t know if a particular person is in the market for a new home, so they need to entice them to fill out the contact form or pick up the phone and call. Good photos should be able to get a serious buyer to make a connection with the agent by thinking that the wonderful home they are looking at online isn’t going to last long.

    In a nutshell, sellers will be impressed by an agent that uses professionally made photos that will show their home in the best light (and maybe bring in over-asking bids) and buyers will be motivated to act sooner. That should be a conclusive argument to get agents to hire a pro, unfortunately, it’s still a hard sell.

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