You can’t get a true feel for a house by swiping or clicking through a mere fifteen or twenty photos. While some of these photos are professionally done and definitely make a home look appealing, they can never truly do a property justice. Sometimes images are taken at angles which make rooms look bigger than they are, exterior pictures are taken at angles that make exclude important details or features, and properties are presented in ways that aren’t false, just not comprehensive. The utilization of drones allows agents across the country to show a comprehensive view of a house, giving potential buyers and fellow agents a great overview of a house right through the computer or smartphone. The average real estate listing in the past, and still today looks something like the screen shot below of a listing in Delaware County, Pennsylvania.
It features a nice, newer town home with three bedroom and two and a half bathrooms.There are twenty mundane pictures of a house that get the job done. The house is unfurnished, and appears to be clean and move-in ready. The whole listing can be seen here. Potential buyers get a good idea of how many bedrooms there are and what the interior looks like. But just from these pictures they have no idea what the street may look like or what it is proximal to. Looking at this page may get people interested or curious about a property, but it definitely won’t get anyone excited about it. No one looks at an empty room of wall to wall carpeting and says “THIS IS THE HOUSE FOR ME!”. Drone technology is making viewing listings an experience rather than a chore or task. For those of you who do not regularly sift through real estate listings, and I understand there are many of you out there, it may be troublesome to understand how drone technology could make a real estate listing that much better or that much more exciting. Well I think I am about to put your confusion to rest with this video of a magnificent property in Avalon, NJ that uses drone technology to amaze, market, and hopefully sell.
While I am not trying to suggest that the two properties featured are of the same caliber or price range, the disparity in presentation is still dramatic. The drone video gives a view of the entire block, its proximity to the beach, and makes viewing this home online an enjoyable experience. It almost feels as if you are walking through the house while viewing it. The background music adds to the property, and appeals to an upscale clientele. This is something that cannot be done in a regular slide show of bedrooms and kitchens.
Everything about using this technology seems great right? Well not all people feel that way and the utilization of these technologies have created conflicts and discussions at local and federal levels. The big issue with drones in real estate, and the use of drones overall in the United States, is the issue of privacy. Not everyone wants little cameras flying around in the sky, which is understandable. But the NAR (National Association of Realtors) is calling for responsible use by agents according to a recent article on realtor.org. People, including myself, also view drones as simply cameras with propellers. Little did I know before recently that drones are of concern for the Federal Aviation Association. I suppose they are aircraft.
In fact the F.A.A just recently approved the responsible usage of drones for commercial purposes in real estate. This responsible element includes not operating the drone outside of the operators sight of view, only using the drone on property where permission was granted, and several other common sense, but important points. This article from thehill.com goes in to greater detail of the F.A.A ‘s involvement and coordination with the National Association of Realtors.
From strictly a real estate perspective, marketing is the key, and the use of drones and video to display a property is an amazing tool. Some people buy houses without ever seeing them, so I have heard. If someone lives across the country, they may trust an agent or family member to find a house for them. The use of drone and video technology can make that decision a little bit easier. It is fun to think about how much more advanced home marketing and technology will become in the coming years. Perhaps open houses will become irrelevant or showing appointments-obsolete. Maybe one will actually be able to walk through their potential new house from the living room of their old one. The possibilities are endless and the listings are too. Do you think drones should be used in real estate? Let me know, because this open house of real estate is far from obsolete.