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Real Estate Drone Photography Guide 2019

Real Estate Drone Photography Guide 2019

Drone photography and video has firmly established itself as an indispensable tool in real estate. What was once a prohibitively expensive option only available by aircraft is now ubiquitous. Video is the dominant media on the internet and drones or unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) offer the most cost-effective and time-efficient way to capture imagery and are especially suited to use in real estate. Whether you are selling a property or just looking for some great aerial images of your home, drone photography offers a grand sense of scale and birds-eye perspective.

Using drone video and photography brings a new dimension unmatched by static imagery and text alone. According to soldbyair.com who analyzed real estate listings found that 83% of home sellers prefer an agent who uses drones”. Aerial photography and video gives the buyer a chance to conceptualize their future in the property, and its grounds; and imagine new ways to use the space.

Your agency can really benefit from using drones too, as they can really boost your marketing efforts. Video sells, as the saying goes ‘a picture tells a thousand words’, and according to Forrester Research “one minute of video is worth 1.8 million words”, proving that it applies to online video. Having an aerial photograph or short video of a property will massively increase its salability.

Here are some ways drones are being used in real estate:

Complete coverage of a property.

If you are as spatially un-aware as I am you’ll understand some people need a little help visualsing a space, and a video does this better than anything else. When combined with indoor, ground photography there is no alternative solution to providing such a complete picture of a property and its surroundings, i.e., woods, from every angle.

Professional video presentations

Drone videos capture exceptional footage of properties and their grounds and when edited together with an optional voice over to highlight key features, the effect can generate a massive amount of excitement.

Increase business

When prospective sellers are looking to put a property on the market they will naturally go with the business that invests in technology to make their properties stand out from the crowd and get sold as quickly as possible.

Improve website performance

Google loves video content, this won’t come as a surprise as the internet giant owns YouTube. You can see a boost in your website rankings if you include video content. People are much busier today and are reading less as a result, “59% of executives say they would rather watch a video than read text.” – Wordstream, which means that many visitors will turn to a competitor who does provide video content.

Go Viral: More engagement on social media

People hunting for a home share property listing photos with friends all the time but they are missing out. According to a recent compilation of marketing statistics by Biteable “social video generates 1200% more shares than text and image content combined”. That’s a staggering statistic which should put it into perspective how important video is on the internet.

Highlight property features

Every property has unique selling features and a property listing can really be enhanced by an engaging video which shows them in a flattering light in an impressive and compelling aerial video.

Show what’s nearby

With aerial photography you can really make it clear to people how near/far a property is from a beach, waterfront, or lake, using the heightened perspective to help buyers get a better feel for the surrounding area.


Video is the most shared and high-ranking format used on the web, people are much more likely to share a video on Facebook than a property listing with static imagery.

Drone video pilots need to have a skill not only in piloting the UAV aircraft but also to produce cinematic shots which will engage visitors and ultimately help sell properties. When you consider the value of a property the outlay of hiring a drone pilot to capture and edit cinematic footage is relatively very small and a very worthwhile investment to make.

There are local drone operators you could choose to hire for listings, however it would be wise to make sure they have experience in property footage as the demands are different from shooting corporate videos or for insurance. You could also train your own internal drone operator, all that is involved is a 2-day PfCO Drone Training Course and an application and the one-off initial cost of purchasing a drone. This has the advantage of the person already having extensive knowledge and experience in the real estate industry which is essential.

You do not need any prior experience to start piloting drones, but you will need a PfCO to use it commercially. The PfCO (Permission for Commercial Operations) is a permission for commercial operations. It is granted by the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) and allows a drone pilot to use their drone to undertake commercial work. Getting your PfCO means completing a 2-day theory course followed by an exam, writing an operation manual, and passing a flight assessment, all of which is covered on our own PfCO Drone Training Course. Upon completing the course, you will have proven that you have ‘Pilot Competency’ and therefore be recommended by us to the Civil Aviation Authority for your PfCO.

However, if you choose to include aerial video and photography we believe it’s a forward-thinking investment that will have immediate benefits to your sales and marketing.

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