Drones Take Flight in Real Estate Industry

If there’s one real estate trend that’s surely taken flight over the last couple years, it’s drones (pun very much intended). Drones are leveling-up listing photos, turning basic from-the-ground house shots into aerial masterpieces that showcase the entire property—water features, landscapes, mountain views, and more. A recent panel at the National Association of REALTORS® (NAR) Conference & Expo in Orlando tackled the trend and highlighted some of the issues surrounding it in a 90-minute session, “Unmanned Aerial Systems (Drones) and How They Can Help You.” Moderated by Trey Goldman, legislative counsel for Florida Realtors®, panelists discussed regulation updates, safety, education and more, while providing specific examples of how drones can take listings above and beyond.
The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) forecasts that there will be over 1.3 million commercial drone pilots by 2020, with over 11 million commercial drones sold. Drones are a $2.6 billion market today, set to quadruple in 10 years to over $10 billion.

Goldman noted that much of the damage from the recent Hurricane Matthew in Florida was shot via drones and that Disney World just received permission to fly drones over their parks in the evening. Drones are here to stay and everybody wants in…even those with world-renowned mouse ears.


Winter Is Coming… 5 Reasons to Sell Your Home Now!

People across the country are beginning to think about what their life will look like next year. It happens every fall; we ponder whether we should relocate to a different part of the country to find better year-round weather, or perhaps move across the state for better job opportunities. Homeowners in this situation must consider whether they should sell their house now or wait.

The latest Realtors’ Confidence Index from the National Association of Realtors (NAR) shows that buyer demand remains very strong throughout the vast majority of the country. These buyers are ready, willing and able to purchase… and are in the market right now!

Take advantage of the buyer activity currently in the market.

According to NAR’s latest Existing Home Sales Report, the supply of homes for sale is still under the 6-month supply that is needed for a normal housing market (which is 4.5-months).

This means, in most areas, there are not enough homes for sale to satisfy the number of buyers in that market. This is good news for home prices. However, additional inventory is about to come to market.
There is a pent-up desire for many homeowners to move, as they were unable to sell over the last few years because of a negative equity situation. Homeowners are now seeing a return to positive equity as real estate values have increased over the last two years. Many of these homes will be coming to the market soon.

Also, as builders regain confidence in the market, new construction of single-family homes is projected to continue to increase, reaching historic levels in 2017. Last month’s new home sales numbers show that many buyers who have not been able to find their dream homes within the existing inventory have turned to new construction to fulfill their needs.

The choices buyers have will continue to increase. Don’t wait until all this other inventory of homes comes to market before you sell.

Fannie Mae announced that they anticipate an acceleration in home sales that will surpass 2007’s pace. As the market heats up, banks will be inundated with loan inquiries causing closing timelines to lengthen. Selling now will make the process quicker & simpler.

If you are moving up to a larger, more expensive home, consider doing it now. Prices are projected to appreciate by 5.2% over the next year, according to CoreLogic. If you are moving to a higher-priced home, it will wind up costing you more in raw dollars (both in down payment and mortgage payment) if you wait.

According to Freddie Mac’s latest report, you can also lock-in your 30-year housing expense with an interest rate around 3.57% right now. Interest rates are projected to increase moderately over the next 12 months. Even a small increase in rate will have a big impact on your housing cost.

Look at the reason you decided to sell in the first place and determine whether it is worth waiting. Is money more important than being with family? Is money more important than your health? Is money more important than having the freedom to go on with your life the way you think you should?

Only you know the answers to the questions above. You have the power to take control of the situation by putting your home on the market. Perhaps the time has come for you and your family to move on and start living the life you desire.


A November Drive Down 30A

November 2016

A quick drive down 30A Seacrest Beach and Alys Beach. You’ll see that Alys beach already have their Christmas decorations up. Thanksgiving is coming up this week, so expect more decorations along 30A.


Video By 30aEscapes.com

Drone use is coming to commercial specialties

The fledgling drone industry is in the throes of change as weak consumer demand and falling prices drive startups to shift their focus to specialized business applications.



3D Robotics — an early drone startup that raised more than$125 million from investors — has seen its consumer business all but crash. Last week, it unveiled a new commercial strategy, announcing a camera-equipped drone with imaging software designed for construction companies.

A Sharper A6 drone gets ready to fly over power lines in eastern North Dakota near Blanchard. The drone is specially designed for utility asset inspections.

GoPro Inc. last week announced a recall of about 2,500 drones for a refund after just a couple of weeks on the market — some units had sudden power outages, and the company didn’t say when it would offer a replacement product. Europe’s Zano, which made minidrones for consumers, shut down last year.

While many drone-makers overestimated demand from hobbyists, they now see big opportunities selling to businesses under newly relaxed federal regulations. Beyond flying robots, investors and entrepreneurs see especially strong prospects in software and services that can make aerial imaging useful for industries including insurance, construction, agriculture, and entertainment.

Firms including Amazon.com Inc. and Zipline, a drone startup, are also aggressively developing drones for delivery.

Most startups vying to sell consumer drones, often used for racing or photography, have been stung by China-based DJI. The company has dominated by slashing prices, and some retailers have offered even deeper discounts. Some stores’ prices on DJI’s popular Phantom 3 drone, for instance, have fallen to about $300 from about $1,000 at the beginning of the year.

3D Robotics took a beating after releasing its Solo consumer drone last year for about $1,500, said co-founder and chief executive officer Chris Anderson.

“It’s no fun watching prices fall by 70 percent in 9 months,” Mr. Anderson said, referring to DJI’s price-cutting.

After shuttering warehouses and factories and laying off scores of employees, 3D Robotics, based in Berkeley, Calif., has all but scrapped its consumer business, Mr. Anderson said, despite having a backlog of drones sitting on shelves at Best Buy stores. They now sell for one-third of their original price.

The chill is felt widely. Venture capital financing for drone companies fell 59 percent in the third quarter, to $55 million from $134 million in the previous year, according to data research firm CB Insights. The drop reflects a widespread funding slump across the tech sector but also heightened caution about drone companies.

Any new company trying to compete with DJI on consumer drones would have “an extraordinarily difficult argument to make” to venture capitalists, said Rory O’Driscoll, a partner at Scale Venture Partners.

“Consumers buy drones, and it’s a disposable item,” he said. “They play with it, and then they are done.”

DJI, which eclipses many Silicon Valley startups with a work force of 6,000, began making commercial drones and pursuing software development more than a year ago.

“Four years ago, it was enough to take something out of a box, you push a button, and it flies,” said Adam Lisberg, DJI spokesman for North America. “The smart money is now in drone services.”

The industry’s excitement about business applications stems in part from new Federal Aviation Administration rules, which took effect in August and offer a clearer pathway for commercial drone uses, though many restrictions remain. The new rules simplified licensing requirements, making it possible for small companies to certify themselves to operate commercial drones.

3D Robotics’ new plan is to outfit the Solo with new technology to capture 3D images that show the shape, size, and volume of items at a construction site.

The company joins startups such as DroneDeploy and Airware that are focusing on software to make sense of images, whether it’s the angle of a pipe laid at a new construction site or damage to a roof from a hurricane. The drone itself is almost an afterthought.

A report in May from consulting firm PricewaterhouseCoopers estimated that, by 2020, about $127 billion worth of labor and business services could be replaced by drones. A separate report released the same month from Grand View Research projected annual sales of consumer drones globally at just $4.19 billion by 2024.

That doesn’t mean launching commercial-drone businesses will be simple. Trimble Inc., which makes global positioning devices, last month spun off its line of Gatewing drones.

Alphabet Inc. has also pushed out managers and cut funding for commercial drone project, according to a Bloomberg report last week.

And some industry experts are skeptical about 3D Robotics’ plan to upgrade a hobby-grade drone for commercial use.

“It might be too little too late for 3DR,” said industry analyst Patrick Egan. “They aren’t the only company that is going to have problems.”


This Guy Attaches a GoPro to the End of an Arrow, WOW!

There’s not much to this video that isn’t covered in the headline: a guy attached a GoPro Hero Session to the end of an arrow, shot it at a variety of things and people, and then stabilized the output into some really cool footage.

The responsible party is Niko Pueringer from Corridor Digital. He had the idea because people tend to cheat while playing “arrow soft,” and having a camera on the end of the arrow would make sure a hit is counted as a hit. It also happens to be a really cool way to capture some creative footage. Let’s call it “arrow cam.”

When you take the final footage and rotate it in the opposite direction and speed that the arrow spun while flying through the air, you get really cool footage like this:

The full vlog at the top is a tad long, and meanders quite a bit, but you get to see Pueringer attach the GoPro, test the camera arrow out on some of his friends, and edit the final footage into the spinning stuff you see above. He even throws in some editing tips for prospective bloggers.

Check it out to see the full process from start to finish… plus some guys shooting each other with nerf guns.

Matterport 3D Virtual Tour Demo

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Steve 850-714-4883