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Question about Real Estate Drone Photography/Cinematography
1596 25 2016-9-26
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Karuna Khinhin
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Hello all

I was just wondering if there is anyone in the real estate drone photography/cinematography business? Does anyone use a phantom 4 in this business? I want to get in to this field and Im trying to learn all that I can and would love some expert advise or any advise. I just pass my part 107 and waiting on the actual certificate. I live in south Florida Treasure coast and I have reached out to a few locals but... I havent heard anything. So now I'm reaching out to the DJI community.

Thank you!   
2016-9-26
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peter
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First step I would take, with no experience myself, is to see what local real estate agents have done on the web sites, especially the higher end that sell that larger houses / estates with plenty of opportunity for exterior shots. Watch the videos and take away what you like or dislike about them and then develop your own style!
2016-9-26
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DJI-Ken
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The Phantom4 is a incredible aircraft for starting out what you want to do. With learning editing you can make your videos incredible.
After a while, you can move up to an Inspire and 2 person crew for more professional stuff.
Then if you really get into the business, you can get a M600 / Ronin-MX and then you'll have it all.
2016-9-26
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Karuna Khinhin
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peter@wonderlan Posted at 2016-9-26 22:45
First step I would take, with no experience myself, is to see what local real estate agents have don ...

Thank you! Im going to do this right now. There is plenty of real estate where I live. I truly appreciate it.
2016-9-26
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Karuna Khinhin
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DJI-Ken Posted at 2016-9-26 22:57
The Phantom4 is a incredible aircraft for starting out what you want to do. With learning editing yo ...

Great advise thank you. Im actually teaching myself editing using imovie on my mac. As far as the Phantom 4 goes, it has been on my radar for the past 3 weeks. Ive been doing a lot of research and it seems to be the perfect fit for me. Thanks again.
2016-9-26
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DJI-Ken
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Karuna Khinhin Posted at 2016-9-26 23:05
Great advise thank you. Im actually teaching myself editing using imovie on my mac. As far as the  ...

If you download the DJI GO app, from the homepage you can read the full manual and watch tutorial videos.
That way, you'll be more prepared knowing it's features, functions, and limitations.
From the home page choose whatever aircraft you want to learn about, the top right icon (graduation hat) takes you there.
2016-9-26
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Karuna Khinhin
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DJI-Ken Posted at 2016-9-26 23:14
If you download the DJI GO app, from the homepage you can read the full manual and watch tutorial v ...

Very cool. Thank you.
2016-9-26
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DJI-Ken
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No problem, there's a ton you can learn even before you get the aircraft.
2016-9-26
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Wingsy
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I'm using a P4 for real estate videos. I just started this business (Bird's Eye Photography) about 3 weeks ago and so far have done 3 for 2 different realtors. I think the P4 is ideal for this work. The customers love what they're getting. I would suggest that you make a demo video of some real estate (like, your own), spend some time editing the movie (in iMovie) and add some royalty-free music to it. Send an email to a realtor introducing yourself and with your link to the demo in YouTube. Worked for me.

Also, I would suggest buying the Litchi app. My last video I did with Litchi, and to have the ability to program your route beforehand is a great time saver (and battery saver). Here's a link to the demo video I did (I need to redo this video with way less manual flying. No one notices it but it's way too jerky for me. At the time I thought it was great!).  Good luck with your business!

2016-9-27
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dak162
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I do real estate sequences with my P3P. I also film sequences for landscapers, local businesses and wedding photographers/cinematographers.
2016-9-28
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Karuna Khinhin
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Wingsy Posted at 2016-9-28 15:13
I'm using a P4 for real estate videos. I just started this business (Bird's Eye Photography) about 3 ...

First off, thank you for taking your time and leaving some great advise. This community has been awesome so far. Thanks for sharing your video as well. Im going to purchase the p4 in the next month I feel and practice as much as possible. Ill also keep the community updated with my progress and hopefully be able to give back.
Thanks again!!
2016-9-28
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Karuna Khinhin
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dak162 Posted at 2016-9-28 17:54
I do real estate sequences with my P3P. I also film sequences for landscapers, local businesses and  ...

How is the business going for you? How long have you been in the business? Is there anything you would suggest getting in this field?

Thank you!
2016-9-28
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dak162
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Karuna Khinhin Posted at 2016-9-28 16:46
How is the business going for you? How long have you been in the business? Is there anything you w ...

The business is going well! I've only been in this business since I got my Part 107 Remote pilot certificate on September 7. Since then, I've worked on 2 weddings with a local photographer/videographer (the wedding photographer tells me what shots they want and I take them). I've also worked with 2 local realtors and a landscaper who needed aerials of a golf course.
I do not charge very much because I do not want to drive them into the," I'll just get a drone myself" mindset. That being said, I have made my money back for all equipment I've bought and certification I have gone through.
I charge based on time invested. (How long am I needed to get the shots they want, time for post production if they want me to do it)
I just hope the novelty doesn't wear off for them!

I have a relatively generic website (www.qiiflight.com) and a few business cards. I just finished a sequence for a local beach front store who wanted the beach in their advertisement.
2016-9-29
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BrandonSopher
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United Kingdom
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dak162 Posted at 2016-9-29 01:48
The business is going well! I've only been in this business since I got my Part 107 Remote pilot certificate on September 7. Since then, I've worked on 2 weddings with a local photographer/videographer (the wedding photographer tells me what shots they want and I take them). I've also worked with 2 local realtors and a landscaper who needed aerials of a golf course.
I do not charge very much because I do not want to drive them into the," I'll just get a drone myself" mindset. That being said, I have made my money back for all equipment I've bought and certification I have gone through.
I charge based on time invested. (How long am I needed to get the shots they want, time for post production if they want me to do it)

Very cool, thank you for the insight.

I am looking at buying a drone soon, probably the Phantom 4, and starting a small business filming retail, events, personal projects, quality inspections, etc.  

With that said, I'm curious what your thoughts are on the following..
- Type of Drone best suited for this type of work (or what do you recommend)?
- Best way to start off attracting realtors/property owners?
- Editing software recommendations?

And last question (a bit personal), do you find this as a sustainable way to make a living? Or do you see it more as a side business/venture moving forward?


I don't mean to sound too business-like, my passion for photography and working for myself are the driving factors behind the questions. Also, I have to admit, I'm a bit of a newbie in the drone scene.

Thanks for any advice you can give!
2017-1-12
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Adam Flurk
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peter@wonderlan Posted at 2016-9-26 06:45
First step I would take, with no experience myself, is to see what local real estate agents have done on the web sites, especially the higher end that sell that larger houses / estates with plenty of opportunity for exterior shots. Watch the videos and take away what you like or dislike about them and then develop your own style!

When you look online for what people are in same industry - and let's say you Google it - Just remember that the organic results you see are based locally first. So, let's say you search: real estate photographers - Your results are going to first show 3 ads, then organic local results and or businesses. Good way to check out your local competition. Also, if you are logged into your Gmail while searching, that also has an affect on the SERPs in Google. Either way, it's a great way to see what other people are doing. I highly recommend it. See what everyone else is doing, dig a little deeper, create something amazing.
2017-1-12
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QiiFlight
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BrandonSopher Posted at 2017-1-12 13:19
Very cool, thank you for the insight.

I am looking at buying a drone soon, probably the Phantom 4, and starting a small business filming retail, events, personal projects, quality inspections, etc.  

I use a Phantom 4 Professional. It is compact, lightweight and the camera is the phenomenal.

I use Facebook ads and Google Adwords targeting my local area (they are cheap and effective) that send interested parties to my website. I have also found it immensely helpful to visit realtor offices and talk with them and show them some examples of photos and videos.

I use Final Cut Pro X (Mac), but I started with IMovie (Mac). For Windows, Davinci Resolve is great, but has a learning curve. There are several folks on the forum that can point you in a good direction for editing software.

As long as the market is not saturated, and with legwork you could make money. I expect you would have to get into construction or corporate photo/video to put a good meal on the table. I decided that I was going to fly anyway so why not provide a service to realtors and other small businesses that could use a different perspective. The prices I charge are relatively low. Try to keep in mind, that there are realtors/small businesses that could invest (for a relatively low price) in the same equipment we have and do the same things. Like any other small business, find your niche, be good at it and always give your customers more than they expect.
2017-1-13
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BrandonSopher
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QiiFlight Posted at 2017-1-13 02:49
I use a Phantom 4 Professional. It is compact, lightweight and the camera is the phenomenal.

I use Facebook ads and Google Adwords targeting my local area (they are cheap and effective) that send interested parties to my website. I have also found it immensely helpful to visit realtor offices and talk with them and show them some examples of photos and videos.

Great information, I really appreciate it!
2017-1-14
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BTW
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Australia
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dak162 Posted at 2016-9-29 01:48
The business is going well! I've only been in this business since I got my Part 107 Remote pilot certificate on September 7. Since then, I've worked on 2 weddings with a local photographer/videographer (the wedding photographer tells me what shots they want and I take them). I've also worked with 2 local realtors and a landscaper who needed aerials of a golf course.
I do not charge very much because I do not want to drive them into the," I'll just get a drone myself" mindset. That being said, I have made my money back for all equipment I've bought and certification I have gone through.
I charge based on time invested. (How long am I needed to get the shots they want, time for post production if they want me to do it)

This is great! Have any of your clients inquired about if you have insurance?
2017-2-22
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Sestaceans
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DJI-Ken Posted at 2016-9-26 06:57
The Phantom4 is a incredible aircraft for starting out what you want to do. With learning editing you can make your videos incredible.
After a while, you can move up to an Inspire and 2 person crew for more professional stuff.
Then if you really get into the business, you can get a M600 / Ronin-MX and then you'll have it all.

Well maybe the M600Pro Ken, lol
2017-2-22
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QiiFlight
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BTW Posted at 2017-2-22 00:11
This is great! Have any of your clients inquired about if you have insurance?

One of the points I provide to the client is the fact I have liability insurance for any damage or injuries incurred on the property.
2017-2-22
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DJI-Ken
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Sestaceans Posted at 2017-2-22 00:16
Well maybe the M600Pro Ken, lol

The M600 Pro is an excellent choice.
2017-2-22
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Sestaceans
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DJI-Ken Posted at 2017-2-22 08:13
The M600 Pro is an excellent choice.

Indeed, the Pro version is well worth the small increase in $
2017-2-22
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DJI-Ken
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Sestaceans Posted at 2017-2-22 08:38
Indeed, the Pro version is well worth the small increase in $

Yes, indeed it is.
2017-2-22
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BTW
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Australia
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QiiFlight Posted at 2017-2-22 02:23
One of the points I provide to the client is the fact I have liability insurance for any damage or injuries incurred on the property.

Yeah, I guess public liability insurance is a must if you want to join this industry. See, in Australia you don't need any type of license to fly drones commercially that are under 2kg. Some restrictions apply such as not flying closer than 30 meters from any person. The challenge is that most insurance companies are hesitant to insure someone unless they show some level of competence. To get fully licensed in AUS will cost me between 1200 - 1600 USD. I've just spent this kind of money on my P4P and gear.
2017-2-22
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Sestaceans
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BTW Posted at 2017-2-22 15:06
Yeah, I guess public liability insurance is a must if you want to join this industry. See, in Australia you don't need any type of license to fly drones commercially that are under 2kg. Some restrictions apply such as not flying closer than 30 meters from any person. The challenge is that most insurance companies are hesitant to insure someone unless they show some level of competence. To get fully licensed in AUS will cost me between 1200 - 1600 USD. I've just spent this kind of money on my P4P and gear.

They're much more laid back mate.
2017-2-22
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Tom24nh
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I have thought about filming for realtors, I think it will be a big part of there listings in the future just look how 360 inside has progressed  
2017-3-7
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