Carson

Dji mavic pro real estate

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Is the mavic pro a good drone to use for taking real estate pictures and videos even though the pictures are 12 megapixels?

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I don’t think so.  It depends on what other camera your shooting your stills and video with.  

It has a small crappy camera, In the right light it can capture good footage, but that’s a very narrow dynamic range.  

 

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It is not good for stills. The color range on the small camera is not good. Check out pole photography. You can get a DSLR 16 feet or more up in the air and take HDR shots. Rich Baum has a good tutorial for making one.

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Also check out the videos in this thread.  Property videos mean different things to different people.  Architectural photography is really challenging to make look good, video even harder. 

To have a quality look you have to use quality equipment.  Then the problem is matching the aerial with the rest of the shoot and it’s very difficult to match footage shot with a dslr with a MAVIC.

 

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5 minutes ago, Av8Chuck said:

Also check out the videos in this thread.  Property videos mean different things to different people.  Architectural photography is really challenging to make look good, video even harder. 

To have a quality look you have to use quality equipment.  Then the problem is matching the aerial with the rest of the shoot and it’s very difficult to match footage shot with a dslr with a MAVIC.

 

Would you then consider an inspire series 1. 

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I fly a GH4 and Sony A7Rll which require more than an inspire. I’m also no fan of DJI.  But yes, if you can deal with all of the idiosyncrasies of DJI then I think the inspire 1 with an X5 is a good choice.  You can get them used for really good prices.

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@Carson One thing to think about too is who your clients are. Are you doing high-end luxury real-estate? If so, then the Mavic might not be enough. Is the property mid-range  - less than $1 million? Then maybe the Mavic Pro could work for images that are going to go on MLS (which can only take small .JPG anyway). You could bracket and merge to HDR or LR Enfuse later. Just something to consider. 

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52 minutes ago, Adam G said:

@Carson One thing to think about too is who your clients are. Are you doing high-end luxury real-estate? If so, then the Mavic might not be enough. Is the property mid-range  - less than $1 million? Then maybe the Mavic Pro could work for images that are going to go on MLS (which can only take small .JPG anyway). You could bracket and merge to HDR or LR Enfuse later. Just something to consider. 

This is a great summarization of it all.  With that said, I've seen some Mavic Pro users shoot real estate around the island, and they do alright.  Definitely not the same quality as a P4 or newer, but decent for a mid-range home listing.

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I find the Mavic Pro quite suitable for my real estate aerial videos and stills.  And I simply use my iphone 7 plus for my interior shots.

You be the judge...Check out this 90 second movie:

 

 

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Most of my advice is slanted towards making money with drones, I try not to get too caught up in the technology.  

From a business perspective there’s two ways to be profitable if RE media:

1.  Lower price but more efficient.  I see a lot of people charging low prices for their services.  Some only shoot aerial, but to get more business there’s considerable pressure to shoot interior stills and video.  This is where I see most drone focused approaches fail.  

2.  Create a look and integrate more services that differentiates you and that you can charge more for your services.  

Neither approach is better than the other, just depends on how good of a sales person you are and how you want to make a living.  If you just fly and use your cell phone to shoot the interiors, that’s acceptable but you’d better be able to shoot two properties a day. So you have about five hours per house to shoot, post process, and deliver.  There’s very little time for lighting, time lapse, or any other creativity that tells a story or captures the essence of the property.  It’s pretty much a walkthrough.  Depending on your market most realtors want to pay $200-$300 for that level of service.

The other approach requires more equipment, likely requires an assistant and takes much longer.  As a result you’d better be a good sales person capable of selling that service for $1000-$2000.  

I want to dispel a bit of misinformation, people think that to justify the higher prices the property has to sell for more, that’s not altogether true.  The issue has more to do with the asking price and how it comps.  The first thing a realtor will tell a seller if the property has been on the market is it’s overpriced, imagine if your the seller and you’ve made a considerable investment in remodeling the property, isn’t it rational that the seller wants to recover that investment?  In my area it’s not uncommon for people to spend way more on the remodel than the initial purchase and that investment is rarely reflected accurately in the comps, then it’s more an issue of marketing.  In that situation a $300 walkthrough video generally do more harm than good.  

I’ve  said this before, I don’t produce this type of media for a living, it’s just a part of what we do.  There are a lot of nuanced variables that must be accounted for in both scenarios and if you don’t take them into consideration you will lose money in either.  Also, you need to plan for success, scaling scenario 1 is problamatic and has nothing to do with the technology [drone/camera] and everything to do with your ability to become the market leader in your area.  

Scenario 2 relies more on your talent for using technology and your ability to develop a quality look and integrated message.  This has more value and enables you to charge more for your services.   We charge $1000 per day so our property videos and interior photography range from $1500-$3000 and we’ve produced one ranch video for $5,000.  This has also led to several $25000 and up productions for wineries, assisted living and resorts.  So it’s a very different approach. 

Obviously these scenarios aren’t mutually exclusive but there’s a ton of evidence to suggest that if your basing your business on a MAVIC and a cell phone your probability for success is minimal. Realtors can fly MAVICS and many of them are already shooting still with their cell phones.  

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14 minutes ago, Av8Chuck said:

Most of my advice is slanted towards making money with drones, I try not to get too caught up in the technology.  

From a business perspective there’s two ways to be profitable if RE media:

1.  Lower price but more efficient.  I see a lot of people charging low prices for their services.  Some only shoot aerial, but to get more business there’s considerable pressure to shoot interior stills and video.  This is where I see most drone focused approaches fail.  

2.  Create a look and integrate more services that differentiates you and that you can charge more for your services.  

Neither approach is better than the other, just depends on how good of a sales person you are and how you want to make a living.  If you just fly and use your cell phone to shoot the interiors, that’s acceptable but you’d better be able to shoot two properties a day. So you have about five hours per house to shoot, post process, and deliver.  There’s very little time for lighting, time lapse, or any other creativity that tells a story or captures the essence of the property.  It’s pretty much a walkthrough.  Depending on your market most realtors want to pay $200-$300 for that level of service.

The other approach requires more equipment, likely requires an assistant and takes much longer.  As a result you’d better be a good sales person capable of selling that service for $1000-$2000.  

I want to dispel a bit of misinformation, people think that to justify the higher prices the property has to sell for more, that’s not altogether true.  The issue has more to do with the asking price and how it comps.  The first thing a realtor will tell a seller if the property has been on the market is it’s overpriced, imagine if your the seller and you’ve made a considerable investment in remodeling the property, isn’t it rational that the seller wants to recover that investment?  In my area it’s not uncommon for people to spend way more on the remodel than the initial purchase and that investment is rarely reflected accurately in the comps, then it’s more an issue of marketing.  In that situation a $300 walkthrough video generally do more harm than good.  

I’ve  said this before, I don’t produce this type of media for a living, it’s just a part of what we do.  There are a lot of nuanced variables that must be accounted for in both scenarios and if you don’t take them into consideration you will lose money in either.  Also, you need to plan for success, scaling scenario 1 is problamatic and has nothing to do with the technology [drone/camera] and everything to do with your ability to become the market leader in your area.  

Scenario 2 relies more on your talent for using technology and your ability to develop a quality look and integrated message.  This has more value and enables you to charge more for your services.   We charge $1000 per day so our property videos and interior photography range from $1500-$3000 and we’ve produced one ranch video for $5,000.  This has also led to several $25000 and up productions for wineries, assisted living and resorts.  So it’s a very different approach. 

Obviously these scenarios aren’t mutually exclusive but there’s a ton of evidence to suggest that if your basing your business on a MAVIC and a cell phone your probability for success is minimal. Realtors can fly MAVICS and many of them are already shooting still with their cell phones.  

Beautifully written, Chuck.  I'll admit, I'm stuck in the $1000-2000 property range, still looking for the opportunity to land a large paying gig like you speak.  However, we did end 2017 with 206 properties shot, and 2018 is already looking better than last year.

Like you say, choose either volume or high-end creativity.  Unfortunately, with such a small island, there's heavy saturation and the 'race to the bottom' has already begun.  I refuse to join the race.

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It’s not only the budgets, you can also plan for growth by leveraging the people who come to play in your sanbox.  

Your latest video was interesting in part because it’s produced differently integrating techniques that most people don’t associate with property videos.  Reality modeling with drones is becoming a thing and you now have some success working with a company that’s using it.  

I produced a property video of a single family residence for real estate investment trust selling shares in China.  I added a narrative and some lifestyle elements.  At first they wanted me to edit all of that out to make it just a walkthrough.  After they shared it with some of their offices in China they decided to keep it original and I ended up making five times the money doing all of the different language versions.  They started buying up assisted living facilities in the US selling shares in China.  Over the following three years I produced about 25 videos all over the US.  

There’s no way I would have had that opportunity or the necessary influence if I produced walkthroughs like everyone else.  Probably your biggest challenge is finding the time to make those kind of connections.  If you shot everyone of those 206 properties, that’s a lot of work. 

If you only had others who could help you...

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Thank you everyone for the info. It’s nice to have some professional advice. Now let me ask anyone this would it make more since to save up and invest in say an inspire 1 and have access to multiple different cameras. Because I am also in public service with a fire department and would use the flire inferred camera for instance. So would an inspire 1 do everything I need to do for both relestate and public service? 

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@Carson you bring up several issues. One will be it depends on the policy of the fire department your working with. 

Regardless of the policy, I think that’s probably a better idea.  To my way of thinking the portability of the MAVIC is what makes it such a great potential tool for real estate but the camera isn’t very good.  Autel just announced the EVO with a better camera than the MAVIC which might be a great alternative but they don’t have a great track record for timely product releases. 

So I’d recommend keeping an eye on the EVO to see when it gets released while concurrently looking for a good deal on a used I1v2.  You can probably get one cheaper than a new MAVIC.  However, and this is the biggest problem with DJI, I believe the new FLIR only works on the M600 and possibly the I2, I don’t think it works on the I1.  

 Confused yet?  

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3 hours ago, Jay Burnham said:

I find the Mavic Pro quite suitable for my real estate aerial videos and stills.  And I simply use my iphone 7 plus for my interior shots.

You be the judge...Check out this 90 second movie:

 

 

don’t want to hijack the thread but what software did you use to edit the footage?

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29 minutes ago, Mike Horn said:

don’t want to hijack the thread but what software did you use to edit the footage?

Mike I am new to it all haven’t made it that far yet. I was wanting to get a drone narrowed down first.

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56 minutes ago, Av8Chuck said:

@Carson you bring up several issues. One will be it depends on the policy of the fire department your working with. 

Regardless of the policy, I think that’s probably a better idea.  To my way of thinking the portability of the MAVIC is what makes it such a great potential tool for real estate but the camera isn’t very good.  Autel just announced the EVO with a better camera than the MAVIC which might be a great alternative but they don’t have a great track record for timely product releases. 

So I’d recommend keeping an eye on the EVO to see when it gets released while concurrently looking for a good deal on a used I1v2.  You can probably get one cheaper than a new MAVIC.  However, and this is the biggest problem with DJI, I believe the new FLIR only works on the M600 and possibly the I2, I don’t think it works on the I1.  

 Confused yet?  

No that makes sense I have just heard a lot of good thing about the I1 and I like the set up that it has and when I make alittle more money I would like to upgrade to the i2. 

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Just to confirm the DJI XT will work with all the original X mount capable drones so that Inspire 1, M100, M600 and the new M200 series.  

Ots not compatible with the Inspire 2.

I1 you can pick up at a crazy bargain right now and if someone was looking for a tool to give more of an impression than the Mavic then it offered great bang for buck, just be aware of batteries if you buy one used and check them extensively as early firmware had a discharge bug that could kill them if they were left for long periods with out checking on them.  If they turn on then check the capacity and if it’s above 80% of the original level then they are fine.  

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