Drones now hovering above local real estate market

VISTA, Calif. - They can fly high and film high-quality video, and they may be flying above a real estate listing near you.

10News caught up with realtor and broker Jeff Grant at a home on Hollyberry Drive in Vista, as his new six-rotor drone hovered above the home.

"I think this drone is the future of real estate," said Grant, President of Sand and Sea Investments.

When the Vista home is listed next week, it will link to a type of listing you likely haven't seen before.

"It's a perspective that very few people have seen of a property," said Grant.

Instead of the traditional view of the home, the drone delivers a bird's-eye view.

It's an aerial perspective that captures neighboring properties and roads, tree heights, elevation changes and the biggest draw of the property.

"We wanted someone to be able to capture the beauty, the landscape of our acre and the gorgeous views here," said Craig Crenshaw, the homeowner.

Amid the impressive images, there is a lingering question.

10News reporter Michael Chen asked, "Are you concerned about the legality?"

"Absolutely," said Grant.

Though realtors around the country have started using drones, any commercial use -- for now -- remains illegal.

Right now, the Federal Aviation Administration is drawing up rules for the commercial use of drones.

"Truth be told, it's a strategic risk," said Grant.

Grant said his attorney believes use of the drone is legal as long as he doesn't sell the video.

When 10News asked an FAA spokesperson about real estate listings, he said any usage "to promote a business would be a prohibited commercial operation."

The FAA says some warning letters have been sent to realtors around the country, but they haven't sent out any formal cease-and-desist letters.

The FAA is expected to come up with rules about drone usage by the end of the year.

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