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Top 5 Tips for Choosing a Composite Company

It is the start of a new school semester, and you have just landed in the role of Picture Chairperson. You are the person responsible for scheduling your next fraternity or sorority composite photos. You are looking for the best deal from a composite company, while still expecting a friendly and professional photographer and a classy composite that's going to last. Where should you start? 


Well, here are a few tips to help you find the right composite company for your chapter:  

1. Check for Current Agreements

Your first step as Picture Chairperson should be to check if your chapter already has an agreement with a composite company. Depending on your chapter, the last President or authorized officer may have signed an agreement for the current year. Before searching for a new company, make sure you are not under contract with a current one. 

2. Insist on a Professional Photographer

Your sorority or fraternity composite will be displayed on your chapter wall for a lifetime. With a professional photographer, you can be assured that you will look your best on the composite. Beyond looks, you want to ensure that the photographer you are letting into your house is safe and accredited. Ask the composite company if they perform background checks on their photographers.

3. Ask about On-site Pose Selection

Almost everything in our daily lives is digital, which means, your pose selection should be, too. Ask the composite company to explain their pose selection process. You should look for companies that offer an on-site pose selection, digital viewing stations that allow your chapter to take their time in choosing the right pose, and the ability to choose without one of the company’s portrait looking over your shoulder. It is your composite, and you should have the right to choose a composite pose on your own.

4. Request an Itemized Price Quote

In your search, you will receive many price quotes, in many different formats. To make sureyou are accurately comparing the companies, ask them to provide a complete, itemized price quote. Often, companies will only give you a price quote with one figure on it, but they leave out taxes, shipping, and Greek Licensing fees. These items add up quickly, and without an itemized price quote, you may end up paying more than you expected. It may go without saying, but also make sure the quotes are for the same number of people. Composite pricing is per person and you want to make sure you are comparing accurately.

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5. Read the Fine Print

This is the most important tip: Read the entire agreement before signing! Watch out for rollover or eternal agreement clauses, which state that you agree to be automatically renewed in an agreement with that company every year unless your chapter submits a request by mail for the auto-renewal to stop. These are shady practices, and you can choose not to sign the agreement or to cross out that clause. If a composite company wants your loyalty, it will earn it through service, not auto-renew clauses.

These tips will help you in choosing a new composite company for your fraternity or sorority. Here's a complete guide to choosing a composite company.

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