Cost vs benefits of hiring a drone photography service

Cost vs benefits of hiring a drone photography service

Digitization has transformed real estate, with a notable impact being the growing use of drones for viewing properties in the last decade. Now, more than ever, prospective buyers and sellers can view properties through world-class photos taken via drones. According to MLS statistics, agents that used drone footage for their real estate listings saw an increase in how quickly they could close deals by 68%  — but let’s not get ahead of ourselves. Are drones really worth it when it comes to marketing commercial real estate? Here is a cost vs. benefit analysis.

Benefits of drone services to market commercial propertyV# #

Wondering whether aerial snapshots and drone footage for your listing are worth investing in? Here are some of the benefits you can expect from hiring a drone photography service for your real estate marketing. 

  • Easily capture larger commercial properties in their entirety: One of the core challenges for a commercial real estate agent or property owner is getting a shot of the entirety of their property. Regular pictures just don’t cut it. This is where aerial photography can help. Drones can fly high above your property to get a sweeping shot of the property below. If the property is even larger than a shot looking down can capture, ‘digital stitching’ can help. This method involves digitally combining multiple shots of a commercial property from a drone into a large continuous image, such as panoramas on a mobile device do. As drones are capable of flying in a perfectly straight, circular, or random path, they make the process of digital stitching seamless. 
  • Get to experiment with aerial photography: Traditional aerial photography is not without its drawbacks. There isn’t enough room for experimentation when you are limited by a helicopter with a photographer inside it trying their best to capture your property’s best angles. With drones, it’s pretty much the opposite. You have a lot more room to play with dynamic visual content. With drone footage, you get to tell a story using slides, pans, cinematic reveals, blast-offs, and orbits. You can also opt for virtual tours or get a panoramic shot of your commercial property’s vicinity.
  • Make the most of your property’s surroundings: Depending on your buyer’s demand, you can even use drones to highlight certain features of your property, such as its location. A drone photography service like Up Sonder knows what aspects of the surroundings to emphasize for commercial properties. We recognize that you aren’t looking for a magnificent sunset or a beautiful backdrop but would love to highlight features such as a massive parking lot or how close your property is to a suburb. With drones, you get high caliber coverage of the terrain around your commercial property — whether it’s near a bustling city freeway or surrounded by farmland vegetation.
  • Avoiding surroundings that don’t add value: One of the other large benefits of using drones is that they allow you to avoid surroundings that don’t reflect well on your property. For example, if there is a massive vacant land next to your property, drones allow you to shoot around the property avoiding the empty plot. This allows you to highlight the features that are likely to fetch a premium for your property.
  • Access quality visuals at an affordable price: One of the biggest perks of deploying a drone photography service to your real estate marketing is how cost-effective it can be for you. Drones are more efficient than photographers in helicopters and they are also cheaper. Within an hour, you can get high-quality footage of your entire property at a fraction of the cost of traditional aerial photography. Since the production and operation cost is relatively affordable and you have so much to experiment with, you get a great return on investment with drone footage. 
  • Acquire precise renders of your property: Drone operators excel in precisely capturing key details of your property. However, there’s more than just expertise at play here. You get the benefits of modern technology at your disposal, such as using 3D models, artificial rendering, and other tools to add as much detail to your property’s visuals as you need. For example, let’s assume your commercial lot is currently under renovation, but you want to market it to potential buyers. Using drone footage of the land and construction work, you can create an artificial render of your property and show prospective buyers what it will look like upon completion. You can also use 3D modeling to accentuate key features such as the number of entrances and exits your property has. 

Costs of drone services to market commercial property

While the benefits of using drone photography services are seemingly endless, there are a few downsides to using them. Here are some of them:

  • Risks damage from crashes: You need to prioritize safety when operating drones. Commercial properties tend to be in heavily populated regions, which amplifies the risk of drone crashes through impact or attacks from wild animals like eagles. 

Note that most drones today tend to be fitted with sensors that can recognize possible collisions, and they can safely maneuver around them. However, if you are inexperienced as a drone pilot, hiring a drone service provider like Up Sonder ensures you can operate your drone at maximum efficiency. A certified drone pilot will be well versed in reducing the risk of crashes.

  • Requires the legislative know-how for operation: A certified drone pilot doesn’t just learn how to operate a drone but also the rules of operating a drone in public areas. The legality of operating drones is complex, yet highly specific, and will likely vary based on your location. For instance, although military drones can fly up to 66,000 feet, drones used for capturing real estate imagery cannot fly higher than 400 feet. There are other crucial things to know about how and when to operate drones to ensure that you are legally compliant. Drone photography services like Up Sonder can ensure that you do not have to deal with these legalities by handling your project from beginning to end.
  • Susceptible to weather conditions: Severe weather conditions such as storms and rainfall make it impossible to fly drones. Being smaller than planes, drones are more susceptible to damage if piloted during such conditions. Not only do you risk damaging your drone, but you also cannot expect reliable imagery if the weather is unfavorable. While there are drones that are meant to handle the impact of weather-related changes like gusts of wind, it’s recommended to time your drone flights well. Ensure your drone is flying at a time when the weather is clear.
  • Might demand a skillset: Drone photography services like Up Sonder offer the option of using a qualified drone pilot to capture your property. However, not every photography service affords you this benefit. In some cases, you may be expected to know how to pilot a drone that you are renting. If you do not already possess the skill of remotely operating a drone and editing footage, learning how to do this can take weeks or even months of your time  —  not to mention the investment in a professional course. This is also where a drone photography service like Up Sonder can help you handle your real estate marketing from start to finish, without you needing to learn the first thing about operating drones. Simply convey what you’d like to capture about your property, and we will handle the rest. 
  • Could create privacy issues: Malicious drone use has undoubtedly sparked public privacy concerns by encroaching on the personal space of individuals. In highly populated regions, drones may be perceived as a nuisance even when used for legally admissible purposes like capturing real estate property footage. It’s likely that civilians might feel wary of drones flying above or near them. The longer the drone is in operation, the more privacy threats it may present. One way to tackle this issue is to opt for a professional pilot who can operate the drone efficiently to ensure as little flying time as possible. Fortunately, aerial surveys can be completed in as little as an hour today. One way to counter this risk is by ensuring you are mindful of nearby residents and civilians when piloting a drone. 

How Up Sonder can help

Drone services for commercial properties are a specific niche within the real estate industry, with a notable set of pros and cons. Although drones have their drawbacks, you can ensure you reap the benefits when you hire a professional drone photography service. With Up Sonder, you get access to FAA-certified and insured drone pilots who bring stunning drone footage to you and your clients. 

Using Up Sonder’s exclusive network and quick turnaround time, a drone can be sent to your location for professional aerial images of your property, making the process hassle-free. Up Sonder has created a national footprint by marketing large real estate portfolios across the country for over 5 years. Book a flight with one of the finest drone services the U.S. has to offer today.