Real Estate Drone Photography: The Ultimate Guide to Aerial Photos

Real estate aerial drone photography is the new trend in real estate marketing. It has become so popular that it's not uncommon to see an agent posting a photo of their listing on social media with a caption about how they offer professional drone photos as part of their service.

Drone photography offers a unique perspective that can't be replicated with traditional photography. It provides a bird's-eye view of the property, which can give potential buyers a better sense of its size and layout. In some cases, it can even reveal features of the property that wouldn't be visible from the ground.

With such amazing benefits, it's no wonder that real estate aerial drone photography is becoming more and more popular. In this article, we'll discuss the basics of drone photography and provide tips for getting great aerial photos of properties.

What is real estate drone photography?

Real estate drone photography is the process of taking aerial photos of real estate using a drone. If you've ever seen an aerial photo of a property, it was most likely taken using drones.

Just like traditional photography, drone photography is used to capture still images of properties for marketing purposes. In fact, some agents have been known to use drone videos in addition to photos, which can give potential buyers a more detailed look at the property.

While drones have been used for aerial photography for years, it's only recently that they've become popular for real estate marketing. This is mainly due to the advancements in drone technology, which have made them more affordable and easier to use.

What are the advantages of using drones for real estate photography?

Today, real estate photography is becoming very popular for both agents and individual sellers. Offering drone photos as part of the service provides an edge over non-offering agents because it shows potential buyers that you are serious about selling your client's property.

But why are drone photos so much more effective than traditional photography? Here are a few reasons:

  1. Traditional real estate photography rarely includes aerial photos, which can leave potential buyers with unanswered questions. For example, they may wonder what an undeveloped plot of land looks like from the air or what a backyard would look like if another structure was added.

  2. Drone photos are different from traditional photos because they give potential buyers a sense of the property's size and layout. This is extremely helpful for potential buyers who are on the fence about making an offer. They may not be ready to commit, but the added information provided by drone photos might just seal the deal.

  3. Drone photography can give you access to features of a property that aren't visible from ground level. For example, if your client's property has a river running through it, you can capture photos and videos of the river that wouldn't be possible with traditional photography.

  4. Drone photos are an effective way to showcase development sites before they're built out. It's also a good way to market undeveloped land, acreage, or individual building lots that might not be visible from the ground level.

  5. Drone photography is ideal for capturing aerial shots of multiple listings in one flight. This is a great way for real estate agents to save time and can be extremely beneficial if you're going on multiple showings in one day.

Perhaps the main benefit, though, is the ability to have more control over the finished product. With traditional photography, you are limited to what you can capture from the ground. With a drone, you have a multitude of different perspectives that can show off your property in the best possible light.

How to calculate real estate drone photography pricing

Finding the most cost-effective solution depends on your needs, but there are some key factors that you'll want to focus on. First, do you want to invest in the drone equipment or does it make more sense to hire someone to do the flying for you? This will depend on how much time you have to spend learning about drones, what equipment you already have, and your budget.

Using your own drone equipment

First, you'll need to decide on the type of drone you want to use. There are three types of drones generally used for real estate photography:

  1. Traditional drones

    These drones typically work best with traditional cameras, like a DSLR or a GoPro. While they're versatile, the biggest drawback is that traditional cameras use a lot of power and can be heavy compared to other equipment.

    A larger drone will have more room for a bigger battery and might even have space for an extra battery, so you'll have extra flying time. However, the larger the drone, the more difficult it will be to transport and the higher the price tag.

  2. Drones with gimbal attachments

    These are the most common type of drones available on the market today. Gimbal drones are smaller and lighter than traditional drones and are fitted with a 3-axis gimbal mount. This allows you to use a DJI Osmo or other similar camera, which offers excellent video quality without the need for a heavy DSLR. The drawback of using a gimbal drone is that they typically don't have a lot of flying time and they can be more expensive than traditional drones.

  3. 360-degree VR cameras

    If you want to capture spherical 360-degree video and photos, a 360-degree VR camera is the best option. These cameras are designed to capture everything around them, which makes them perfect for real estate photography. The downside is that they're usually more expensive than traditional drones or gimbal drones and they typically don't have as much flying time.

    Once you've decided on the best drone for your real estate photography needs, you'll need to determine the total flight time your drone needs, the price to charge per photo or video you produce, and how much it will cost for extra equipment. You might also want to consider the costs of transportation, storage, and other expenses related to drone photography.

Hiring a real estate aerial photography pilot

Perhaps you don't have the time, money, or even the desire to invest in your own equipment. If you want to hire someone else to fly the drone for you, this has implications for pricing.

Generally, hiring a professional aerial photographer is going to be more expensive than using your own equipment. After all, they need to charge for all their expenses, plus net profit. However, this option can be a good choice if you don't have the time to take real estate photography classes, only need it for one-time use, or you're not comfortable flying one yourself.

When choosing a professional photographer, it's important to find someone who has experience with real estate photography and who has a portfolio of completed projects to show you. This will help you get an idea of what kind of equipment they use and how good the finished product is going to be.

Once you've found a photographer, it's important to sit down with them and figure out your specific needs before booking a shoot. Different types of projects will require different types of equipment and costs, so it's important to make sure you understand exactly what your photoshoot is going to involve.

Editing drone footage

Once you have your aerial photos, it's likely that you'll need to do some post-production editing. This is because drones tend to capture a lot of images, and many of them might not be usable. The lighting might be poor, the frame might be blocked by a tree branch, or there could simply be too much motion in the footage.

Editing your drone footage doesn't have to be difficult or expensive. With the right software, your drone shots can look like they were taken by a professional. PaintShop Pro can help you fix these issues. You can easily remove any foreign objects, fix color balance and contrast, and even crop the image down to get rid of any dead space.


Real estate aerial photography is a great way to get your properties noticed by potential buyers. In fact, you might find that it's worth spending the money upfront because you can already see how excited buyers are about the photos. And, with PaintShop Pro, you'll be able to edit your footage without breaking the bank.

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