Photography Does Matter

Your Home Deserves To Be Showcased Properly

Traditional, Virtual Tours, Aerial Photography, 3D Floor Plans, etc.

These days, there are many more options to highlight your home on the internet. What does your home’s listing need? Even the most basic home would benefit from most of the list above, yet agents often skip many of these choices. Why? When it comes to High-End Properties such as Luxury Homes and Mansions, how likely would you as a buyer be excited by a listing with just a handful of standard pictures? Well that’s what it can be like if your home’s listing isn’t thoughtfully photographed and presented professionally. Wouldn’t a Buyer be more excited to experience a well thought out journey through your home?

Both personally and professionally, who you are is the intersection of everything you say and everything you do.

Joseph Martori II – ChapterNEXT Photography

What’s the value of professional real estate photography?

Does it matter? Yes! Most people have a 15 megapixel camera on their phone, right? Isn’t that enough? No.

Both personally and professionally, who you are is the intersection of everything you say and everything you do. So when you take a listing and a client has said to you “I’m trusting you to take (in most cases) my single largest asset and maximize the value in the transaction” are you the kind of real estate professional who chooses “good enough”? Because that’s what iPhone photos say about you. That’s what a few shots with your consumer level DSLR say about you. It says “I’m going to do what I need to to sell this house for you – but no more”.

Professional listing photography and Videography tells your client that you understand the difference between the high end tools available to you to produce the best result, and tools which are simply “good enough”. More importantly, that you will use them. It says that you believe your clients deserve the best available products and services necessary to compete for buyers against the other alternative products to their home. As a professional, you should understand that the photography is about the photos but also about the standard of care your current and future clients can expect when they choose you over the thousands of other available agents.

So now that we’ve established that you need to use professional photography in your listings, how do you decide among the field of photography outfits in the valley or your community? Like anything else – through an interview process. Have a conversation. You can expect the real players are all going to have high end gear and reasonable technical proficiency and their portfolios should prove that out. So really, in as far as you are “partnering” with your photographer to accomplish the mission of selling a piece of real estate, the most important criterion is fit. Do you have a level of comfort with the person you’ve chosen? Do you like their “style”? Their responsiveness? Their ability to interact with your sellers who, I’ve heard, can sometimes be difficult?

Sandra Day O’Connor has said that when she met Ronald Reagan to “interview” for the nomination to the Supreme Court that they talked privately in his office for about an hour. About horses. She later opined that although she didn’t understand at first realized later that all he was doing is seeing if he liked her. Every person on his list of candidates for that post was eminently qualified, beyond reproach and expertly vetted by a staff of 50 on judicial review, findings of law, views of Constitutional construction etc. So in the end, they were all the same except the President wanted to “like” his pick.

You have to “like’ your pick. So interview according to personality fit and then on services and offerings that you find yourself needing most often in your listings. Are you looking for a one stop solution for visual marketing where video/photo and 360 VR tours and 2D floor planning are all under one roof? Do you add aerial photography and Videography to every listing? Do you work primarily with investment and remodel clients and need chronology & completion photography for construction lenders? For most real estate agents, 30-35 high quality images on 3 bedroom, 2 and a half bath house is going to do it.   Keeping in mind that while you’re very busy, so is your photographer (if they’re worthy of your consideration in the first place) and that their ability to meet you scheduling needs is probably your most important deciding factor. Can they be where you need them to be and are they reliable. Your minimum expectation should be that your photographer will set an appointment and always be there as agreed and always have images back to you at the time they promised. Your ability to take your listing live on MLS depends on that.

Lastly, pricing and product structure needs to be considered. Generally speaking there isn’t even a $100 swing between highest and lowest priced alternatives within the “professional” category on a per listing basis. That adds up pretty quickly though for teams and agents doing 40, 50 or more transactions per year. So pricing matters. And pricing on additional services matters. Three different photographers may have the same base price of $125 but do they offer a la carte additions of aerials or twilight exteriors or virtual staging of rooms in a vacant listing? If so, how much and what’s the turnaround time with addition of these products?

So when you interview photographers, ask all the questions. Make them earn your business. We compete for you the way you compete for listings so make us put our game faces on and work to earn your continued trust on each listing we shoot. But whatever you do, align yourself with a professional photography partner because it’s about who you are as a professional and it tells the world you mean business. At ChapterNEXT Photography we’d love to talk to you about your needs and see if we can make a good team. Call us anytime to discuss. And if you’re not using professionals for your listing photography call someone – even if it’s not us. Your clients deserve it and your career depends on it.

Joseph Martori II – ChapterNEXT Photography