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View Full Version : Obeo

06-26-2013, 12:02 PM
Not sure if this has been mentioned here but Obeo.com hires freelance photographers to do real estate photography. I've heard they have a lot of work available. Look Better Online is another one that hires amateur and professional photographers provided you have the right equipment.

06-27-2013, 02:50 PM
Thanks for the head's up. I'm going to have to check this out because I've never heard of it before. It sounds like an awesome job though and I know there's a lot of property for sale right now.

06-28-2013, 05:42 AM
Just a little heads. I have looked into places like this as they have been posting on CL all in my area. Since real estate is a big part of my income for photography I figured I would give try to see what they offer.

In my area they were saying there might be 1-2 jobs per week. I want to say their big contract is with Watson, however agents do not have to use them and can go to outside photographers if they choose. You also never know if the real estate agent will renew a contract or when it might all come to an end. If it comes to an end will the new contract holder use you or look for someone else?

They would pay only an average of $55 dollar per listing not including mileage. Rates were $30-80. They wanted files to be uploaded to them in 24 hours, and I had to do all the post processing. They said I could also market their service in my area to other Realtors and I would be those Realtors reps. From what I have seen for their services there is nothing that they do that I already offer to my agents.

So for averages you would get $55 per listing ( was thinking lowering being that the smaller package is what will be ordered the most vs the higher end packages) . So I figured 15 min travel time (30 min round trip), 45 min average shoot time, plus an average of 45 mins for post processing. So in all about 2 hours which boils down to $27.50 bux an hour. That's not bad but then think you must put gas in your car plus the wear and tear. So if you figure 15 mile radius to service, so we average that to 7.5 miles which would equal about $8 bux for gas and wear and tear. So your $55 now becomes close to $46.00. Ok still at $23 an hour, take out your taxes, and you are closer to a final total pay of $32 dollars per job for average take home.

This does not include your equipment that you are using, yes digital cameras do have a lifespan, so does your flash that you will need, tripods can break, lenses get scratches or focus stops working. So you need to put a I would say $1-2 bux away from each job for new equipment down the line. We are soon required to have our own health insurance here in the US so you will have to pay for that, putting money away for retirement, (I am sure most of us don't want to work forever), I don't think they require general liability insurance but it's a good thing to have. Don't forget if you don't have a strong market for them you can build it up to make more money, but this takes money to go out and market.

I am not saying they're a bad company but it's places like this that drive down cost to our industry, by paying the photographers very little. You would have to do at least 3 jobs per day every day to make an "OK" living (43K average before your costs of doing business so knock off 5-10k, for marketing, travel, equipment, etc. I have already spent 9k this year on my business for new equipment, travel, marketing) and you are at 33k per year before taxes, insurance and retirement. I guess it's not bad but at 3 homes a day that's a full time job really, depending on your skillset you might make more working for someone else and have better benefits.

If I am doing the shooting and the post, all the work on the imaging side/customer service to reps, maybe half of the big picture as they do hosting, website, marketing, etc. But getting paid 30% of the job. Not to mention that you must rush back to the office to edit and upload before the start of the next day. I can market myself straight to the source, Realtors, and charge them $100-125 per listing providing them with more photos. That's a better result for me. If they paid more maybe 50% split or better on my end it would be worth it.

If you are just starting out this might be good, if they have a big market in your area and bigger jobs get ordered it would be better. When places like this come into your area it will drive the price down and you cannot compete with that on your own. You must set yourself higher then these in quality and service so that your higher prices (sometimes only slightly) are logical to the Realtors to choose you.

I am not saying to not join them but do your research, figure out how much it costs to run your business and then ask are they paying you enough for what you are doing? Are you making enough to keep your business alive and profitable? Can you expand your business on these rates, new equipment, more jobs? Can you make a living that you are comfortable with at these rates?

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