Are Drones the Next Big Thing in Real Estate?

via RISMedia

Earlier this month, published a new report about the FAA’S updated regulations on the use of drones in real estate marketing, and that brought about one of the most interesting debates among agents and brokers we’ve ever seen.

To help put the issue into perspective, welcomed Raj Qsar, principal of the Boutique Real Estate Group, Corona del Mar, Calif., to a special podcast to discuss his experiences with using drones to capture images for his real estate business.

During the podcast, Qsar spoke about how his company originally owned two user-friendly DJI drones equiped with GoPro cameras, which he used to capture outstanding aerial footage. However, he had to turn the flying over to someone else due to the ever-changing operating guidelines, expensive liability issues and high equipment costs.

“It’s kind of like the wild, wild West with real estate and drones right now, and it’s hard to manage and regulate and all that,” he says. “We have been subbing it out to a very local, super high-end drone pilot here in Southern California.”

When he first started, Qsar says the drone was under the firm’s liability insurance, but it’s no longer necessary since he is outsourcing the flying to a company who uses a more advanced DJI-Inspire 1.

The benefits of using drones for real estate, he believes, include giving a bird’s eye feel to a property, and seperating it from others on the market.

“It’s all about trying to connect that potential buyer to the property someway, somehow, through a story, and one way to do that is with aerial photography and drone videography,” Qsar says.

One example he gives is a recent estate home in a gated Irvine neighborhood that was in his portfolio. At 4,300 square, the 6-bedroom, 4-bath luxury home had a pool, grotto and was part of an amenity-rich neighborhood. By using a drone to shoot aerial footage, he was able to offer potential buyers a true glimpse of what the neighborhood looked like-complete with its walking trails, athletic courts, baseball field, etc.

“With traditional video, you would never see it all,” Qsar says. “By adding in a car going through the front gate and the flying over with views of the community pools, basketball courts and trails, it gives an overall look and feel to the entire neighborhood.”

Qsar believes that using drones, along with traditional video marketing, can help move properties faster than homes that are listed without this new video marketing technology.

According to Qsar, you don’t need a pilot’s license to operate a commercial drone, but you can’t legally do it for real estate anymore. Keeping up with the rules, he admits, can be challenging.

“There are various sites such as DJI with up-to-date rules on their website and there’s also a direct feed for iPad minis and monitors to communicate directly with pilots,” Qsar says.

For his videos, Qsar likes to add music and make it feel more like a movie, even playing with the aspect ratio to add to a “cinematic look.”

Qsar says there’s no easy way to define the cost of using drones, but he feels that for an agent who wants to be on top, it’s going to cost more not to do it than to do it.

“What I try to do is preach for agents to stop thinking about ‘real’ real estate agents because all they think about is cost and that will be a barrier for anything that has the word luxury attached to it,” he says. “It’s going to cost you more not to do this stuff in the long run than it will to put the money up front. Video is not going away, but those agents who aren’t using it, will be.” Sits Down with Raj Qsar to Discuss the Nitty-Gritty on Drones

via’s Secrets of Top Selling Agents is rolling out a new podcast series of “unplugged” interviews with some of the heaviest hitters in real estate who have not only found their niche, but are dominating in it. A few weeks back, we published an article regarding the FAA’s new regulations on using drones for real estate. The response was huge, making it quite clear that this is a hot topic among agents and brokers.

After this, we knew it was time to sit down with Raj Qsar, a seasoned pro at using video for real estate, to get more insight into this new technology. Head over to Raj’s website,, to see some of his amazing video content and to get a better idea of why there is no better person to fill in the information gaps about using drones to market your listings! Here’s just a little recap of our sit down with Raj:

According to Raj, there’s A LOT that goes into being able to legally fly a drone for real estate. He says that he operated the drones himself when they first became popular and that his company owned 2 DIJI drones (the most user-friendly) that were equipped with GoPro cameras to capture aerial footage. But between the strict and continually changing operating guidelines, expensive liability issues and high costs of equipment, he now hires a company with a lot of experience to do the filming for him.

After traveling across the country and internationally for real estate events, Raj has found that cost has become an agent’s biggest concern when it comes to using drones and video. His response to this was simple, “It’s going to cost you more not to do this stuff in the long run than it will to put the money up front.” He states that agents need to recognize that instead of trying to reduce costs by keeping the use of drones “in-house,” they should invest in someone who specializes in this area. The properties that his team lists using video tend to move faster compared to the rest of the market. This is why he can’t stress enough that agents who invest more money in marketing will ultimately see their listings sell more often and at a faster rate than those who don’t.

These were just a few of the highlights from this exciting interview, so be sure to tune in for the full podcast! Head over to the Secrets of Top Selling Agents website to find even more educational sessions like this.

Raj Qsar: How The Boutique Real Estate Group Are Leading The Way With Video

via Josh Cobb of Stepps   Raj Qsar, principal and owner of The Boutique Real Estate Group, joins Real Estate Pros to discuss How The Boutique Real Estate Group Are Leading The Way With Video. Raj shares his journey in real estate and what it’s like selling high-end luxury homes in some of the world’s most stunning locations.

Show Notes

From amazing photography, video and film production, 360-degree HD v-tours, interior design and staging, custom graphics and design, complete social media engagement and search engine optimisation, The Boutique Real Estate Group do marketing the way it should be done. With more than 18 years of sales, marketing and leadership experience, Raj Qsar has achieved this outstanding level of production as a result of his unsurpassed commitment for providing superior representation to his clients. Most recently, Raj was nominated for an Innovator Award for Most Innovative Real Estate Agent in 2014 by Inman News. He was also named Top 100 Most Influential Real Estate Leaders For 2013 By Inman News, and The Boutique Real Estate Group was recently selected as The 2014 Next Generation Real Estate Brokerage by Better Homes & Garden Real Estate & 1000 Watt Consulting. Their 2013 video called #goodbyehello was named Top 20 Real Estate Videos in the USA. As a national and international speaker, Raj travels the world educating real estate professionals on the value of technology and social media. As a highly sought after speaker, Raj has taken the stage at some of the most prestigious real estate conferences across the country and he continues to make his mark in today’s ever-changing real estate market. Join us in this episode of Real Estate Pros as Raj takes us on a journey inside The Boutique Real Estate Group and their commitment to best-in-class marketing and sales.

Fast Five

Who has been an inspiration to you throughout your career?
“Jesus Christ, my personal lord and saviour.”
What are your favourite things in the world to do when you’re not at the office?
“That’s an easy one. I’m a dad with three beautiful kids and a wife, so getting off the grid and spending time with my family without my phone in my hand.”
What is your favourite business book?
The Four Obsessions of an Extraordinary Executive – By Patrick Lencioni.”
What is your favourite technology resource you use daily to help you run a better business? “I literally couldn’t live without my iPhone.”
What is ‘one thing’ that prevents people in real estate from achieving success and what would your advice be to overcome it?
“Don’t try to do everything yourself. Find people who are strong where you’re weak, team up with partnered professionals and just focus on being consistent at your one strategy.”

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About Josh Cobb

Josh is a digital marketing strategist and the founder of Stepps: A digital marketing company focused on real estate. He works one-on-one with people in the business of real estate to help them better compete for brand awareness, improve the growth and retention of their clients and help them understand and profit from social media and content marketing. Josh also hosts the weekly Real Estate Pros podcast where he interviews today’s most inspiring and successful real estate pros and industry experts from around Australia and across the world.