Daniel in New Jersey asked:
I'm curious to know if any photographers are writing listing descriptions for their agents as an add-on? I've recently been contacted by an agent who was interested in this service and gave me some figures as to what he was willing to pay. I must admit, I'm a bit tempted. I know there are agencies/freelancers who write listing descriptions so outsourcing it is definitely an option. However, I guess the main issue that comes up is getting into the details of the property. How old is the furnace? Have the windows been recently replaced? The roof, etc... A photographer obviously gets a good first-hand look at the property but beyond that we typically don't know much. If there is anyone out here offering these services I'm curious as to how they are going about it.
As an ex-listing agent working for 10 years with my wife in the Seattle Eastside market, I find it outrageous that listing agents would ask photographers to write listing text! Although, I'm not at all surprised that some lazy agents would come up with this idea.
When my wife and I got a listing, we would sit down with the sellers at the property and discuss all aspects of the property being listed. This is all information that goes into filling out the listing form and describing and disclosing information about the property. The listing agent is legally responsible for the accuracy of all the information that goes into the listing so I find it irresponsible to have someone else other than the listing agent creating the listing. This is why listing agents are licensed!
My advice to real estate photographers being asked to do this is to tell the agent HELL NO you are not going to write the text for the listing unless you also become licensed, go to the listing appointment with the sellers, and split the listing commission with them!