Since the dawning of the digital age, technology has radically changed the way real estate properties are bought and sold. Home buyers no longer have to wait until the Sunday newspaper listings or until an open house in order to learn details about a particular property. Today, it is easy to browse real estate listings online any time of the day or night.
Home sellers are also using far more sophisticated tools to market their listings. Forward-thinking real estate agents now employ a wide range of digital marketing strategies in conjunction with the traditional open houses. The latest technology that is being rapidly deployed in the real estate business is drones.
In 2016, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) relaxed its guidelines regarding drone usage in the U.S., making them far easier to use in the real estate industry. Since then, they have begun to take the industry by storm. A growing number of real estate agents are now using drones as part of their marketing strategy, incorporating them in the creation of video footage that is used to provide a virtual tour of the property.
Many in the real estate industry believe that drones are the most important new technology for marketing a home since the internet, and it is easy to see why. Drones can take stunning video footage of a property that was never before imagined. This can give prospective buyers a much greater level of detail regarding the specifics of the property, giving them a better picture of what it would be like to live there.
Advantages of using Drones in the Real Estate Business
There are several reasons why a growing number of real estate agents are now using drones to market their listings:
Better Virtual Tours for Property Listings
The virtual tours that are filmed with a video camera cannot hold a candle to what can be produced from drone video footage. Drones can move effortlessly over areas of the property that would otherwise be very difficult to access. This is especially helpful for more expensive and expansive properties that include a lot of land and outdoor features such as a swimming pool, tennis court, or a waterfront.
Drones can also be used indoors to show details of the home’s interior. In fact, a drone-made video could start walking up to the entrance of the home, go through the front door and into each room of the home, then fly out the back and show the patio and back yard. This can provide a more interactive and realistic presentation than any other form of technology currently available on the market today.
More Affordable than Comparable Alternatives
Competition in the industry and technological advancements have driven down the cost of drones in recent years. In addition, a growing number of photography services are now using drone technology, making it much easier and more affordable for realtors to access. A realtor can generally hire a service to put together a video that incorporates drone footage for around $500 to $2000. This is a fairly significant marketing expense, but most realtors already hire some type of photography service, and using drones is far less expensive and much easier to arrange than obtaining aerial footage from an airplane or helicopter.
The “Wow” Factor
Using drone-made footage produces high-quality HD videos that show breathtaking views that would not be available without this technology. The level of detail it can show prospective buyers (both inside and outside the home) is unequaled, and it can even show nearby amenities, stores, restaurants, hospitals, etc. This can give buyers a perspective they could not get otherwise and help establish a greater emotional connection to the property.
With all its features and benefits, drones still have a few limitations, which will require other solutions to address. For example:
- Drones are not ideal for marketing smaller spaces, such as condominiums and apartments;
- Drones are not a substitute for carefully focused, fixed-position photos, such as standard street level shots of the home. You may also want to take standard photos if you are trying to make a room or yard look bigger or not show an unpleasant feature of the property;
- For properties with lots of overgrown trees, it may be more difficult for a drone to show a clear aerial view.
The Future of Drones in the Real Estate Business
Drones are expected to become more mainstream in the real estate industry in the coming years. Real estate agents who adopt this technology early on can position themselves as innovators and firmly establish their services in the local marketplace. Home sellers who contract with a realtor who uses drones can help their home stand out in a competitive market, giving them a better chance of selling their home for top dollar.