The FAA has approved the use of drones for commercial real estate use, but with several catches.
The drone operator must get a private pilot’s license unless they can somehow receive an FAA exemption. Apparently, the paperwork required for this can be exhaustive in length.
Once they have their pilot’s license, they are cleared for takeoff. Though once again, many restrictions apply. The drone must not fly above 300 feet off the ground or more than a 100-foot radius of the pilot. The drone must remain in the line of sight of the operator at all times.
The operator must contact all airports within a five-mile radius and register their flight plan. The flight plan includes flight time (estimated,) flight elevation and the purpose of the flight. They will also need to report data on their drones, such as weight, type of camera in use, and the number of propellers.
This seems like an awful amount of work to go through to get that perfect shot of your home. Clearly, this type of photography is meant for luxury homes, and the price for a session reflects that. Be prepared to pay about $300 to $1,000 to have your house shot by a professional drone operator.