Erica Christoffer is a multimedia journalist and contributing editor with REALTOR® Magazine. In addition to writing print and online articles, Erica oversees the magazine's Broker to Broker content, co-manages the 30 Under 30 program, and manages the YPN Lounge. Connect with her via email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
How to Choose a Real Estate Photographer
Hire a photographer who can help alleviate some of the pain points in the home selling process. Here are qualities to look for.
September - October
Working with a photographer should take work off your plate and help you sell a property. So don’t let poor listing photos or restrictive copyright terms stymie your marketing efforts. Here are qualities to look for when choosing a photographer for your business.
Check their past work.
Ask to see recent listing photos they’ve shot, review their portfolio, and talk to agents they’ve worked with, says Jacy Riedmann, vice president of Amoura Productions. You should feel confident that they know how to shoot, edit, and make a property look its best to create a great first impression.
Are they familiar with the business?
“It makes a big difference if they already understand the business and know the rules,” Riedmann says.
Understand the licensing, assignment, or work-for-hire agreement.
Are their terms laid out? Do you understand what you can and cannot do with the listing photos you commission? Make sure that’s clear before moving forward. Agreements should be in writing, because verbal agreements are difficult to enforce.
Learn all of their policies.
For instance, does the photographer charge a cancellation fee in case you or your clients change plans at the last minute?
Ask about related services and turnaround time.
Learn more about the best practices in real estate photography.
It’s important for both parties to set expectations. Find out how they provide the visual assets: a download from their website? A Dropbox folder? Do they offer resizing? Ask about other services they may offer, like floor plans and virtual tours or video.
Can they counsel on house setup?
A home needs to be decluttered and prepared for photos as it would be for a showing. Does the photographer offer a list of tasks to be done at the home before the shoot? Amoura Productions has a prestaging video with tips. Example: Keep pets away during the shoot.
Do they have a drone license?
If you’re hiring a photographer who uses drones for aerial photos or videos, be sure they have a Remote Pilot Certificate/FAA Airman Certificate and their drone is registered with the FAA, which costs $5.