Ok, full disclosure…I got out of the real estate photography game a few years ago. But like myself, I would assume many architectural photographers used real estate as a launching pad for their professional careers. Via some other local photographers and “people watching” certain Facebook groups, I still keep my ear to the ground somewhat on this genre. One thing I have noticed though with most real estate photographers…
In one instance, a photographer will have multi-tiered pricing based on square footage. Another will base theirs on the listing price. Another will base theirs on the number of images, etc. And when many photographers explain their pricing, you find out their structure is at the mercy of what realtors and agents prefer and/or it’s a simple cut-and-paste of what other photographers are doing in their area.
Why not create a pricing structure based on what you (the photographer) think you’re worth and what you think is a fair price to photograph the properties you normally shoot?
Inevitably justifications and excuses will fly as to why they could never change their pricing structure. And yes, I understand the ‘if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it’ philosophy. The irony is, many of the photographers who defend their pricing framework, will also say they feel they’re underpaid. They’re not even charging real estate agents what they feel is ‘fair’…see the disconnect?
Real estate still seems to be a genre of photography where even seasoned professionals let their clients determine their pricing. Yes, you have to consider multiple factors of what you can charge in your market, but few seasoned professionals in other photography genres take this approach.
Will you lose clients if you change your pricing? Of course! But what type of new clients would you gain?