Duke Warner Realty

Real Estate Photography: Using drones for listings

In 2016 we’re all trying to get ahead in the real estate market, by using any competitive edge we can. Playing with drones is one of many fun things to do in Bend, Oregon, but drones could also be a great tool for real estate photography. Drones are already used for law enforcement purposes, weather monitoring and more.

Drones, or unmanned aircraft systems (UAS), can be used to get unique angles of properties, showing more details to a buyer than ever before. An image taken from higher in the air can show an all-encompassing aerial view of the entire property or land for sale. It can also give prospective property buyers a look at what the surrounding neighborhood looks like, or what a child’s walk to school would consists of.
A high aerial view could also show certain amenities near the property, like walkability to parks, restaurants, shops and more. Highlighting a particular property line or survey features might also become easier.

Anyone can do it

Drone imagery removes the need for elevated photography by expensive planes and helicopters. With drones, professionals aren’t needed to fly the device. All you need is some practice, a steady hand and a little patience. Drone footage can also be shot as a video or stills, and you can typically do the editing in house, as it doesn’t require difficult programs or prior training. Even if you choose to outsource drone photography, it could be much less expensive than other options.

The Rules

It’s important to use drones legally, as there are still many rules the FAA is deciding upon. Users must be 13 years of age or older to operate a drone. Filing a petition with the FAA Modernization and Reform Act of 2012, Section 333 is necessary. Your UAS must be registered with the FAA and a waiver must be obtained for every air space you have plans to shoot in. The last step is to get an FAA airman certificate for either private, recreational or sport pilot.

Operators must fly under 400 feet and the drone can’t weigh over 55 lbs. Drones must be flown only in the daytime, and only in plain sight. If you’re using a drone for real estate photography, you’ll most likely be flying it in residential areas. There are certain areas where UAS are not permitted, such as sports areas or stadium, including racetracks, the District of Columbia, forest fires and within 5 miles of any airport.
When filming for real estate, always ask homeowners before launching your drone, including private property. Try to avoid flying over large crowds of people, and having children or pets chase your drone.
Drone photography for real estate is a new idea, but it’s one that could be around for a while. The FAA has issued thousands of permits for commercial use, and nearly 40 percent of those were issued to real estate companies. So do some investigating and consider how drone footage could boost your real estate listings.

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