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catoismymotor (51.71)

Calling All Realtors!!!

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July 27, 2010 – Comments (6)

Hello,

I have a question or two for the realtors that frequent TMF. I am a professional portrait and event photographer that would like to start making some additional money on the side by taking photos of real estate that is for sale for realtors to use in advertising. Most photos I see in print on the web or in those little circulars are not very good. I think it is important to show the house in its best light, and that can not be done with the camera on your phone. A professional eye with a professional camera can help you sell a property more efficiently.

Who would it be best to contact at an agency to spread the word that I have this service available? How much would you be willing to pay for a service like this? Would you, the agent, have to be in my company while I am taking the photos to allow me access to the interior of the homes?  Is there a way for me get a key and code of my own even though I am not an agent?

I appreciate your collective help with these questions.

Cato

6 Comments – Post Your Own

#1) On July 27, 2010 at 3:06 PM, davejh23 (< 20) wrote:

I'm not a Realtor, but I did work on development of a real estate business several years ago.  At the time, there were multiple virtual tour companies that offered professional stills and panoramic pictures for a modest price (~$100).  Many Realtors were using these services at the time, but having browsed listings recently, it looks like most are skimping on the advertising...I guess that makes sense when many homes are listed for $100K+ over market value and have no chance of selling.  You might try contacting the virtual tour companies, since they contract with photographers all over the country.  I've been working with a Realtor recently that has an agreement with Bank of America and manages all of their bank owned listings (hundreds) in the area.  I would focus on Realtors with a bunch of listings in the area...maybe you can locate a Realtor that has a relationship with the banks.  You might want to try contacting banks directly as well...local banks may have property listings on their websites, and many only have one poor quality picture of the front of the home.

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#2) On July 27, 2010 at 4:05 PM, lemoneater (81.74) wrote:

Cato, all the best on you new endeavor! ReMax is a big name that comes to mind. They sell properties all over the world.

 

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#3) On July 27, 2010 at 4:07 PM, USNHR (31.60) wrote:

Cato,

 I"m not a realator either, nor did I play one on television. However, my thoughts on the subject though are that in order for you to get into this business, you would have to market this as time and effort saved for the realator, because a 7 megapixel camera is relatively cheap these days and they take excellent picture for what a realator would need it for, online listings, and one page flyers.

 The other thought i have is that you would market your services to the high end market, where a high end client would want to see lots of pictures before they invest their time going to see the property in person.

 

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#4) On July 27, 2010 at 4:14 PM, djshagggyd (72.52) wrote:

Cato-

Seems like a great idea! I'm obviously no realtor... but I wanted to pass along another idea (in case you haven't already thought about it).

If you live near a big city (like I live in Chicago for example)... there are TONS of bands who will pay good money for a simple photo shoot or concert shoot. I know because I have paid many of them :)

Also, in Chicago you can do freelance photography for venues, music publications, music event coordinators, etc, etc...

The key is looking past the "deadbeat" bands (who may be very talented yet are lazy and have no money) and finding the ones who are passionate about what they do and working hard to accomplish their goals. You could start a MySpace or Facebook page for your business and easily start advertising to bands/venues, etc... in your area to get a feel for what may be out there.

My friend Amy has made a very successful living off of her Music/Wedding photography business. 

I know that this may be a little bit more work than the Realtor idea... but it's another to try (if you haven't already).

Plus you seem like an artistic type who would probably enjoy getting paid to see good music :)

My friend Amy is at the point where she can go to almost any venue in the city... anytime... for FREE. Pretty sweet!

Ok, my lunch break is over and I'm done rambling now.

Have a good one Cato! Best of luck with the business!

~djshagggyd 

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#5) On July 28, 2010 at 6:35 AM, cthomas1017 (83.90) wrote:

My wife is a realtor.  I asked her thoughts...

Photo's don't sell a home.  She has never seen a situation where the quality of the photo's "seduced" a potential buyer.   Realtors are facing a depressed market where buyers are coming into the market with specific desires (short sales only, catch a falling knife, lake homes, downsizing, etc)  It's the specs that ultimately determine if someone wants to visit a property.  There is a market for photographers working for realtors, but the value is realized only on the higher value properties.  There are a lot of people trying to break into the real estate photography market who are willing to "give away" their services.  (College grads with few job prospects, retirees, stay-at-home mom's, etc.)

Best of luck.  Finding a niche is probably the best way to succeed.  Best place to start at an agency is at the top, the owner or broker, themselves.  But get ready to stand in line with those guys.  The best thing to do is to go to the bigger ad buyers in those circulars and invite them for coffee - or - join a local BNI "club".  It might be totally different in your locality.

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#6) On July 28, 2010 at 9:33 PM, catoismymotor (51.71) wrote:

Everyone,

Thank you for the words of encouragement.

cthomas, 

Thank you for passing along the advise from your wife. She has given me a lot to think about. Please thank her for me and give her my best.

Cato

 

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