Some agents choose to employ outside companies to produce drone videos of their homes. If an agent’s operating budget can handle the expense, and that’s a big if, that’s perfectly fine. You do get what you pay for: Expert drone videographers have the experience and intricate knowledge on how to shoot a home for maximum effect. An agent may not have an abundance of time to learn the small details that distinguish a professional video presentation from an amateur one.
Professional Drone Pilot
Armature Drone Pilot
But the gap is closing, somewhat. Drones targeted to consumers are, by necessity, easier to learn and control. Although one should practice using a drone to the point where house windows are no longer in jeopardy of being crashed into, the on-ramp to knowledge of best drone practices is shorter than it used to be.
Jesse Young of Droneguru has some valuable tips for the budding drone cameraperson:
- Make your shots as long and steady as you can.
- Do several “takes” with your clips. Film one sequence a few times so you have options to choose from—especially if footage gets damaged or erased by accident.
- Take note of wind conditions, and try to make your drone work with the current instead of against it. The resultant footage will be steadier.
- When you’re done shooting the video, don’t stop filming—wait for 10 seconds to allow for a decent “tail” for editing.
- Plan ahead to account for the rapid drainage of drone batteries—they may only be able to produce 10 to 20 minutes on one charge, so bring backup.
In addition to the rules and regulations the FAA maintains, there are some points of basic etiquette to consider before embarking on a drone shoot. Obviously, the homeowner has to consent to your filming their property. It’s also a very good idea to let their neighbors know of the drone shoot as well, since some of their property may wind up in a few of the shots. While shooting over a public street is covered, you need to be authorized when flying over privately-owned property.
Finally, avoid flying over crowds or gatherings of people. It’s generally considered a breach of privacy—or worse, cause for rowdier folks to use your drones for target practice. Discretion is highly advised.