One of my listings recently went under contract, quickly of course in this market. As most of us do in this business, I have a short list of vendors that are on speed dial to make business quick, accurate, respectable and results oriented. For that very reason, I hesitated to use a new photographer for this listing that's owned by a friend, an out of state real estate agent.
Given the referral for the photographer by another vendor, I took a chance that this simple property would photograph easily as my business motto is the best online presence. The "not knowing" how this new photographer would pan out was a bit unnerving, no matter that this was a lower price range of a home.
So onward I met the photographer, after waiting and waiting and waiting for about 75 minutes. You see where this is going. I was told 5:30, then the time was moved up to 3:30, so I accomodated arriving at 3:30 but she didn't arrive until 5:15. Not to open the door. Heck anyone can install a contractor box with a code. I was there to relay my expectations and what I wanted to see happen.
No I'm not a control freak. I'm a business owner with friendly expectations. I didn't hover, I just offered suggestions - period.
Fast forward to receiving the photos. Well, let's just say I've seen better, much better. I'm used to HD photos with a functional site to order a slew of menu items. What I received were over-processed, blurry, crooked photos.
Taking a deep breath, I simply replied one sentence in my email, "I can't use these and have to order from someone else."
I'm never one to make anyone feel inadequate. The coach and mother in me would NEVER talk down to anyone, I don't care who they are or what profession.
Take a Stepping back, I decided that these might be salvageable if I could edit them. So I started editing them with good results after a few minutes and decided to upload them.
In Arizona, we now have what's called "Delayed Status" otherwise known as coming soon. The status is meant to allow us to market homes fairly to everyone on the MLS, WITHOUT showing the property. This listing had been in Delayed Status for about 5 days. The status was set to go to Active on the 28th. That morning, we were live with no photos.
It's always my policy to have photos labeled, in order, and ready to go before we go live. Not wanting to return the status to Delayed, I scrambled and made the photos work.
Showings happened in less than an hour and we were under contract shortly thereafter, giving fair time to everyone to show the home.
Immediately following I wrote an apology email to the photographer, along with the site I normally use for photos for her to see what I'm used to seeing. What I had seen wasn't the best work that she might have produced. But it wasn't up to be me to be judge and jury. It was my duty to guide her to create better photos and to succeed in making great photos for others. That's what any of us should be doing, helping others to succeed, raise the bar but not too high to achieve.
She responded positively and I hope to help her understand what photos work best in this industry. Lesson learned - for me!