Four things REALTORS® should know before they unbox that new drone


Source: Bigstock

Source: Bigstock

So, you’ve bought a drone and are ready to wow clients with your marketing expertise. But do you know the Federal Aviation Administration’s new rules?

Before you start revving the rotors, make sure you are aware of these important new guidelines, provided by Illinois REALTORS® Attorney Jeffrey Baker. Baker wrote an overview for REALTORS® as part of the latest edition of DR Legal News, a members’ only publication for Illinois REALTORS®.

The good news? There’s finally some clarity on how the FAA regards these devices.

The catch: You’ll have to hit the books and follow new rules.

Here are some top take-aways.

  1. Yes, you can fly drones. But, that’s assuming they are lighter than 55 pounds and aren’t traveling more than 400 feet above the ground (unless you are within 400 feet of a structure.) You can’t exceed 100 mph with one of the devices.
  2. You’ll have to be licensed. The new rules require operators for commercial purpose to get a remote airman certificate. This requires taking a test at a FAA-approved testing center. Information is here.
  3. Local laws still rule. While the federal government was working to establish rules for commercial drone operation, many local governments stepped into the void and passed their own rules. Make sure you follow them. FAA guidelines do not trump local ordinances at this time.
  4. Make sure to register your drone. The FAA has had a registry since last year. Go here to register (and pay a $5 fee to do so.)

These are the big take-aways, but there’s lots more you need to be aware of as you get ready to take to the skies.  See the drone report here, and learn more about topics of interest to REALTORS® in the full version of DR Legal News here.

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