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A real estate photographer is usually marketing their services on the basis of their ability to take fantastic photos of homes, businesses and other commercial properties that are for sale. However, in the quickly advancing world of the real estate photography industry many freelancers are providing additional services, not only to stand out from the competition but also to increase their incomes.
Photography Remains Central.
Your ability to take outstanding photos of properties that help realtors and private owners to sell them will always remain the central aspect of your business if you are a freelance real estate photographer. However learning new skills and being able to provide extra value is becoming increasingly important to make it in the highly competitive, but extremely lucrative, real estate photography industry.
This changing trend is something that freelancers should embrace and make the most of. In some cases this will require training and learning new skills but once you have mastered the essentials of these additional services you will be in an awesome position to cement your place as the go to source for real estate photography in your city.
What Additional Services Can You Offer Your Clients as a Real Estate Photographer?
The following are some of the key services that a real estate photographer can provide.
High Quality Professional Floor Plans.
Every real estate agent provides accurate floor plans with the marketing material that accompanies the sale of a property. Buyers need to understand the exact floor space of the property they are buying before they proceed and take actions to make the purchase. This applies to homes, businesses and commercial properties which means that if you can provide this additional service you will help to streamline the operations of the realtor putting yourself in the perfect position to land the contract with them.
There is a wide range of software that you can use to create high quality and professional floor plans which you can use from home to increase the range of services that you provide.
Software that you can use include to create floor plans include Plan Grid (Ideal for homes and commercial properties with an easy to use interface that offers a free demo so you can decide before you buy) and Lucid Chart (The perfect option to create true to scale floor plans for all scales of properties from apartments to huge commercial properties!)
Virtual Staging of Properties.
In about 5-10% of all online property listings the real estate broker uses virtual staging as part of their marketing materials. Virtual staging is a process where graphic editors and software is used to create a more appealing interior design which will attract buyers and display the best of the potential that the property holds.
You can add virtual staging to your tool kit in order to attract more clients and provide more value to real estate agents. As a freelance real estate photographer you can purchase software to help you produce modified designs of the property for sale. It’s worth noting that generally speaking the room has to be empty to get the best results although this is usually the way in which a property is sold.
360 Virtual Tours.
This modern, high tech addition to the real estate market has opened up huge opportunities to photographers that can master the technicalities. As more and more real estate sales are made online, and potential buyers start their searches on the web, 360 degree virtual tours are becoming a huge selling point for real estate agents.
You will need a professional, high definition 360 degree camera however once you have the gear you’ll really help to put yourself head and shoulders above most of the traditional real estate photographers that may not be up to date with the latest industry advances.
In the “new normal”, whatever it means, it is very important that real estate agents are able to do showings and tour of the property virtually. Potential buyers might not be able to visit the property because of health concerns or government restrictions. In addition in cities like Philadelphia there are buyers from other countries who are buying property without ever stepping out of their country.
Capturing elevated shots of properties can be a massive selling point and really set the imagination of the potential buyer on fire. You will need a simple drone to produce these images. As a general rule, any exclusive, luxury residential property that is on the market will include aerial photography, made using a drone, to promote its gardens and the surrounding area.
If you can provide this service you will be setting yourself up to gain high paying clients in the real estate photography market. However it’s not just high end properties for sale that use drone footage and increasingly it’s becoming a standard part of brochures for suburban properties and even apartment blocks. Giving the potential buyer an extra perspective really helps to give them a sense of the place and realtors know that this really sells.
Commercial level drones are easy to come by and don’t cost the earth and as a working professional you will find that the gear could pay for itself in a single job!
Create a Video of the Property.
If you have a camera that includes good high definition video then you can easily add to the services you provide by offering to include a video of the property in your real estate photography packages. This will allow you to really capture the feel of the space which will give buyers a true representation of the property. This means that your client, the realtor or property owner, will really value your services allowing you to charge more for the deal! It will also help to build your reputation and expand your business.
Conduct a Walking Tour of the Property.
This is a more unusual service that you can offer but the results can really pay off and really add to your profits. Given that you’ve been at the property, taking great photos, possibly creating 360 virtual tours and aerial drone photography, why not take the lead on behalf of the seller and offer to provide a walking tour to interested buyers!
It might not be for everyone, particularly if you are not comfortable meeting strangers, however if you are then this is an incredible opportunity for you to really go above and beyond to impress your client. Make sure you dress smartly and professionally and have a good knowledge of your way around the property. Try to see things from the perspective of the buyer and be open and forthright at all times. If there’s anything you don’t know then tell the buyer that you, or the property owner will get back to them.
Providing walking tours of a property will mean that you will have to be available to meet the potential buyers at times that are convenient for them, which might include evenings after work. However, if you are successful in selling the property on behalf of your client you could receive a generous windfall!
When You Provide Additional Services You Increase Your Value as a Photographer.
The more skills and services that you can provide the more versatile and effective you can be as a professional working real estate photographer. If you are able to deliver a wide range of related skill sets to a potential client they will snap you up and always choose you above your competitors. To upgrade your services you may have to undergo training, buy new equipment and software or simply try new things but if you trust in your own talents and work hard the world is your oyster!
What additional services do you provide?