We have added a UAV, or unmanned aerial vehicle, to our repertoire and have been using it to gather HD video of gulf front condos and other pieces of real estate in Orange Beach and Gulf Shores, AL with plans to move East in the upcoming weeks and gathering video of condos and gulf front properties in Pensacola Beach and Destin and Fort Walton, Florida.. The drone is a great tool that records footage in amazing 4K resolution and allows for great and unique aerial perspectives of the beautiful beaches of the Alabama Gulf Coast. Most of the videos are taken of condos for sale in Gulf Shores and Orange Beach and include the actual condo, as well as, adjacent condos and proximity to various area attractions. It's nice to see a property of interest and also be able to get a feel for what's also in the immediate area.
A couple of the obstacles involved with recording these types of real estate is the elements, including the wind, sun and dangers of flying around beach front condos and over the Gulf of Mexico. Because the resolution is so high, the files created can get pretty enormous and require some editing. The landing gear in many of the available drones can get in the frame and requires some creative flying at times unless the UAV comes with retractable landing gear. When you start getting in to models with this feature, the drones start to get expensive. The company we went with is called DJI and they offer a variety of products ranging from beginner to advanced.
The drones we tested were the Phantom 3 Pro and the Inspire I. The latter of the two has the retractable landing gear and buzzed around the condos for sale in Orange Beach at Turquoise Place at a whopping 55 MPH while climbing up and over the 300+ foot condominium with ease. The Phantom 3 Pro does not have the retractable landing gear, but makes up with portability and a platform that gets airborne very quickly. The Inspire requires for some assembly before flight. The propellers must be attached, camera attached, machine calibrated pre-flight and the landing gear has to be set up for certain situations over and over. For example, every time you pack the UAV into its case, it must be put in to "travel mode" which requires the toggling of a remote switch. This is not overly difficult, but is time consuming and adds up. The Phantom 3 is much, much quicker and ready to fly.
The batteries for the two drones differ considerably too. When flying the drone around the condos for sale at Phoenix West in Orange Beach, we timed the flights. The Phantom 3 was in the air for about 22 minutes while the Inspire used the same battery in 17 minutes. This doesn't seem long, but it was plenty of time to video the entire condo on each side and over the top and immediate area and take some time flying to the pier in front of the condos at the Four Seasons. The weight is also much different. The Phantom 3 weighs in around three pounds while the Inspire weighs seven pounds. The UAV footage will also be a useful tool for those researching condos to help decide where they want to stay on the beach. This will increase the traffic through our supplemental rental network. We allow clients to list their rental condo and we direct traffic to their rental landing page with rates, availability and property info. Click here for more info on this unique service.
Both of these machines are great and I have nothing but complimentary remarks for DJI. It simply came down to which of the two was right for us. We've been adding new video daily and plan to continue adding HD video of Orange Beach and Gulf Shores real estate. Please let us know if there's an area of interest, we may have footage. If not, we're making lists and trying to send the appropriate video to those interested as we go. We have these videos available on our Youtube channel, click here to view. The channel features a collection of aerial video including Perdido Pass on Orange Beach, West Pass in Gulf Shores, the Wharf Amphitheater and marina, numerous gulf front condos and current pre construction and much, much more.