Alan in the Seattle area asks:
While mostly shooting residential, I’ve been asked to shoot commercial real estate. The photos will be used to lease the properties. I have no idea what to charge for this type of project. Do you have any advice?
Photos used for renting and leasing property are typically used over and over whereas sale photos are used once. Here are some things to think about:
- In general, for sale photos are used for a relatively short time but the transaction value is large. Rental photos are usually used for a long time over and over but the transaction value is much lower.
- Clearly specify in your licensing agreement how long photos are licensed for. The longer they can use them, the more they should be charged.
- Research your local market. See what the local expectations are. If you live in an area with lots of rentals, it certainly makes sense to treat rentals very differently. Rental owners may well push back if other photographers are not doing the same thing.
- You should have a different license agreement for rental photos. Rental clients are more likely to think that they own the photos and believe they can use them forever and even sell them to a new rental property owner. Are you going to transfer ownership to them, or allow them to use the photos for a specific amount of time? A discussion of the alternatives is a good place to start the pricing discussion.
- If you are going to transfer ownership to them, then my guess is that you should charge them 3 or 4 times the "for sale rate."
- If you are shooting a bunch of properties for the same client, a volume discount may be in order.
What are others' experiences with shooting leasing and rental properties?