Of the two types of real estate photography, commercial and residential, the former has been more rewarding and profitable. As a result, commercial real estate photography has been flourishing only for the past few years and has yet to be fully understood.
Today, we’re gonna see why commercial real estate photography is so valuable and what photographers should do if they want to enter this branch of photography.
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Real Estate Photography: Commercial vs. Residential
So, we all know the difference, right? One takes photos from residential places, while the other takes photos from commercial places. But doesn’t this explanation sound oversimplified and a little weird?
The main difference between residential and commercial photography lies in the fact that the former is more popular but less lucrative than the latter!
Plus, commercial photographers have fewer licensing restrictions, meaning they can showcase their work to attract new customers. As for residential photographers, they may do so only after the property is sold.
In residential real estate photography, photographers are more or less dealing with homeowners or agents with a limited budget who don’t pay that much for pictures and have high expectations. In many cases, they just want to lease out their property, not sell it. This means they won’t pay that much for a couple of photos.
On the other hand, commercial real estate photographers work with real estate agents, architects, or designers. In commercial real estate, there is always a set budget for marketing the properties, which means that photography costs are not of any concern.
Commercial real estate photographers have fewer projects than residential real estate photographers, but for the reason explained above, they earn considerably more than residential real estate photographers.
Also, commercial real estate photography projects are almost always much bigger than residential real estate photography projects.
Why Commercial Real Estate Photography?
There are various reasons why real estate agents value commercial real estate photography this much. Here, we review some of them.
It impresses buyers and tenants.
Think about the last time you booked a hotel room. Don’t you agree that those neat shiny pictures affected your judgment of the place? If taken by professional photographers, commercial real estate photos impress potential buyers/tenants greatly; agents know this much better than anyone else.
It attracts more visitors
Agents want visitors, be it a restaurant, an office building, or a hotel. The more impressive those pictures, the more people will be drawn to the place. They have their way of convincing visitors. All they need is to get those guys to visit the place, and who could do the trick better than a professional commercial real estate photographer?
It builds trust
Showcasing a property sends potential buyers the message that the owner believes in his/her work and has nothing to hide. Therefore, instead of boring their audience with minute details about the place they’re advertising, agents prefer to let the audience see the place and draw their own conclusions.
It sells faster
Stunning images touch upon our emotions deeper than we think. As soon as we see a photo of a beautiful place, we begin picturing ourselves there, doing things we always dreamed of doing.
Professionally-taken photographs show the properties in their best light, and for that reason, potential buyers show much more interest in those photographed properties and don’t wait too long to make up their minds.
Commercial Real Estate Photography: Where to Begin?
Regardless of your photography skills, you must understand that commercial real estate photography requires certain principles.
As a photographer, commercial real estate photography may not be an entirely unknown, mysterious realm to you. Yet it has its own ins and outs that you’d better prepare for. Here’s what you can do for the start:
Take real estate photography courses
To do a clean job, you must be well prepared. If you want to prepare, you first need to build on your knowledge and skills. By taking one or two real estate photography courses, you will learn lots of precious stuff regarding cameras, photography techniques, photo editing, and real estate photography in particular.
Try working with a professional commercial real estate photographer
This would help you more than you could imagine.
For one thing, it will give you a real feel of the work environment, which can prepare you mentally and help improve your confidence level. Moreover, you will learn practical lessons that you can’t learn otherwise.
Present your best self on social media
Why social media? Because it’s the most crowded free market in human history! This is where you can exhibit tour skills without leaving your chair or paying a penny.
Early from the start, even before receiving your first request, you must introduce yourself as a commercial real estate photographer on social media. You must draw attention to your skills so that people know what you do and how well you do it.
Make a portfolio of your workhttps://revivoto.c
Many real estate photographers ignore this tip.
However, an online portfolio of your work history is literary, a permanently open exhibition in the best corner of the market. Believe me; you never want to close that exhibition. It’s your one and only loyal agent who finds you new projects all the time and wants nothing in return.
Tips for Shooting Commercial Real Estate
Pick the right equipment
Apart from a high-quality camera and a tripod, you need a set of other equipment that would help you take better photos. Among such equipment are:
- Gear bag
- Wide-angle lens
- A light meter
- External flash units
- Lens filters
There are various brands for every piece of equipment we mentioned above, and you might feel confused regarding which brand of camera, tripod, or lens filter to go for. To some extent, it depends on your budget. Yet, the best way to go is to ask for help from experienced photographers.
Make sure you hear out the owner.
Before shooting any commercial real estate property, you should talk to the owner and ask them about the selling points they want to emphasize. This may include a nice little park close to the property or a certain design style on the pillars.
Be careful with your timing
When shooting the property, you must pay special attention to the lighting of the place. Too little or too much light will kill the joy of your work. Depending on the location and size of the property, you may decide to do the shooting during the early hours of the day or late in the afternoon.
Improve your editing skills
After taking the photos, some modifications are in order. You can ask a photo editing company to edit those photos for you, or you can edit them yourself.
Unless you live a very busy life or editing software makes you sick. You’d better learn the basics of photo editing. This way, you’ll be able to edit your photos for free.
Don’t apply too many changes to the photos.
You should make certain changes so that the pictures look more appealing. But don’t make them look too fancy. Let them carry around a mode of reality.
Commercial real estate photography is an absolutely promising profession that every photographer should consider.
Surprisingly, it’s somehow less demanding and more rewarding compared to residential photography.
Get prepared to become a commercial real estate photographer by attending real estate photography courses, working with commercial real estate photographers, and maintaining a strong online presence.
Depends on the size of the project and whether you prefer to be paid per image or per day. You may demand $150-$850 per image, depending on the time of the day. Normally, dusk/twilight photographs cost more than daytime photos.
This is because there are many more residential properties than commercial ones. But, there are many commercial real estate photographers who receive even more offers than residential real estate photographers. It all comes down to how good the photographer is and how well he markets his service.