Professional Managers Use Professional Photographers

Contributed By: Nick Buick on

Lets face it, your owners COULD manage their own rentals, there’s nothing stopping them, they don’t even need to be qualified… But just because they could do something themselves, doesn’t make it a good idea. Your owner clearly understands that, it’s why they hired you. They made a conscious decision to appoint a trained, experienced, and professional manager to handle the marketing and management for them. They did this because they accept that there are certain tasks that are outside their area of expertise. They might be a really good doctor, pilot, or insurance salesman, but they know being good at whatever they’re good at, doesn’t automatically mean they’ll be a really good real estate agent. They know that a vastly better outcome is achieved by delegating and engaging a professional manager, to deliver higher quality of service than they can achieve themselves in this field. Therefore; they engaged their onsite manager. They made the correct decision!

As an onsite manager, you wear a LOT of hats. You’re a caretaker, an administrator, a book keeper, a facilities manager, gardener, a receptionist, a letting agent, a real estate agent and a business person. When you transition between so many roles, it’s easy to fall into the trap of thinking you can do it all. But there’s some tasks that are simply outside the field of expertise of onsite managers. There are some tasks you COULD do yourself, there’s nothing stopping you from doing them yourself you don’t even need any qualifications to do them yourself. But just because you could do something yourself, doesn’t make it a good idea. Photography is such a task. Lets face it, you COULD use your telephone as a camera and wander around a dimly lit apartment haphazardly snapping off blurry phone images of the property… but that doesn’t make it a good idea! There are professional photographers who can deliver a vastly higher quality of service than you can hope to achieve with your telephone camera. You need to think like your owners did when they chose to hire you as their manager and ask yourself: “can I achieve a better result, with less hassle, by delegating this task to a qualified professional?” The answer, when it comes to photography, is almost always: YES!

According to a recent user surveys, 43% of users rated poor quality photos as their leading source of frustration. A professional photographer will ensure your images aren’t grimy, blurred, pixilated, too dark, and crooked. If you don’t believe me, let’s perform a little comparison. I asked the onsite manager of one of my apartments to pop upstairs and do a little mock photo shoot with their smart phone for me. I then hired a professional (the exact same professionals we recommend to you on our website) to do a shoot after her of the same room. Here’s the results:

Here’s a typical photo taken by an onsite manager using their smart phone

This is typical of what I see some onsite managers use when they’re marketing a listing day in day out… they’ve popped upstairs with the trusty iPhone and snapped out a quick photoshoot – job done – ready for market…. Right?


The room is dark, shadowy, small and pokey… this is *not* the work of a professional, neither a professional photographer, or a professional property manager – this image has no business being used in professional marketing. This image says to me that the manager couldn’t care less about the standard of service they are delivering. Fortunately my onsite manager wouldn’t dream of using an image like this for anything other than a condition report. But if this was my manager expecting me to pay them for this standard of marketing, I’d let them go.


This is the same room, photographed by a professional photographer

There is simply no comparison, it doesn’t even look like the same property! Professional photos are in focus, the perspectives are corrected, the lighting is even, the colours are balanced, the images are composed properly, the focal length is shortened to capture the entire room giving it a feeling of space, the colours pop, the property looks desirable. THAT’S THE WHOLE POINT OF MARKETING A PROPERTY!

It should now be abundantly clear that the difference between a manager with a smart phone, and the work of a professional photographer is night-and-day. And we’ve worked really hard with our supplier to ensure we can arrange photoshoots in just about any major region across Australia, with a 24 hour turn around… and from just $150 – incredible value. For that sort of price, with that sort of turnaround, for that sort of quality, there’s really no excuse for managers to be using smart phones and serving up DIY photography to their clients.

When it comes to photography, you should absolutely employ the same philosophy your owners did when they chose to delegate their property management to a professional rather than attempt a substandard, Do It Yourself job. Your owners made the right decision to engage you, a professional, and when it comes to photography – you should do likewise!


  1. Hi Nick,
    Thank you for the article about quality photography. It has been a pet beef of mine for the last 20 years. While I realize that your article is meant to promote your own photo service, I am sure you will allow me the opportunity to once more point out that RAAS members may have me take professional real estate photos for them at no cost at all. This is just ONE of the services that RAAS provides. I have been taking real estate and architecture photos for over 30 years and have over $20,000 worth of the best digital camera gear available in the market today. I trust that this post will be available online.

    Regards Mike Butler

  2. Author

    Yes, I too used to work in photography many lifetimes ago. But I tell you for $150 per shoot (not per shot, that’s for an entire shoot), including travel time and retouching, even I couldn’t compete with the work RealPropertyPhotography offer. Plus their images are really nice, I’ve used them a few times on my own properties (as shown above) and they really do take a lot of time setting up the shots and getting them looking good. Very dedicated people, I can’t recommend them enough 🙂

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