Dallas Real Estate Drones? Brad Inman's 2014 Real Estate Predictions Inspired Me to Add in a Texas Twang

DroneBrad Inman is the founder and publisher of Inman News, an internet entrepreneur, former real estate editor and brilliant investor/guy. Whatever Brad touches turns to gold, including HomeGain, TurnHere, Vook, and his investment in Curbed.com, which recently sold to Vox Media. So when Brad talks, the real estate world listens. (Poss sub. req.)

Brad-Inman_avatar-82x96And I hop to attention with a Red Bull:

Brad prediction 1: “a drone accident masterminded by a maverick real estate agent will make national news.”

Let me tell you about drones: they are not all for military use. Think of them as those little flying devices that delivered sponsor’s help to Katniss in Hunger Games. 20131029-drones-x306-1383070563A drone revolution is coming, as Jeff Bezo indicated on 60 Minutes a few weeks ago. Drones have the potential to become an estimated $89 billion industry by 2025, according to the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA). Of course, it’s illegal to pay someone to fly a drone right now, and I would not suggest buzzing one around Strait Lane, but with improved technology, drones could be the new wave of aerial real estate photographs taking 360 degree views of properties from the sky. They would be incredibly realistic photos, too. I would imagine this would be a Godsend for ranch sales. Maybe a drone could even buzz through a house and snap-snap?

Quadcopter - TacoCopterTexas already has a finger in the drone business pot:

Organizers of the Texas bid expect economic development in the Corpus Christi area, according to a statement. They plan to operate 11 test ranges in the state, led by researchers at campuses in Corpus Christi and College Station.

Texas has a long and distinguished history in the aerospace industry, and this test site is an important opportunity to create jobs and grow the industry in our state, Texas governor Rick Perry said in a statement.
Drone testing may produce $260 million in economic impact in Texas over the next decade, including 1,200 jobs, according to a March study by the Association of Unmanned Vehicle Systems International, an Arlington, Virginia-based trade group promoting the industry.

Pogir2Anyhow, I predict Pogir of Briggs Freeman Sotheby’s will be the first Dallas real estate agent to photograph and market a listing via drone.

Brad 2: “The private secondary mortgage market will be back in full force this coming year (though later in 2014), giving a fresh but sustainable lift to the housing market.”

Yeah, I concur, and I think jumbos will be back, and not cost borrowers an arm and a leg. We will be hearing more on this from Guardian Mortgage and Inwood Bank, so stay tuned.

Brad 3: “Interest rates will be higher, but housing demand will be fierce, squeezing the inventory and driving up home prices.” Totally agree. We are going to see some real estate inflation — I’m writing about a Ritz condo that was listed for less than $3 million last year, but sold for three this year. I think that the increase in interest rates will hurt young, first time home buyers, especially kids with education loans to repay. If you are thinking of buying for the first time this year, I would suggest getting in sooner rather than later. Higher net worth buyers may not feel the pinch as much, as long as they can deduct that interest. We are still spoiled by absurdly low rates. But do I want to see 18% again? HELL NO!

Housing demand will be totally fierce, because inventory continues to be a real problem: Dec. 2012 there was a 4 month supply of housing in DFW. Dec. of 2013 there is only a 3 month supply, a reduction of 29.1% from last year. New listings, down 9.3% (from last Dec.) to only 5,318. Average price per square foot? $104 versus $93 a year ago. New construction ppsf? $117 versus $103 last Dec.

Brad 4: “An investment opportunity to buy equity in individual top-producing real estate agents will unfold, like what is being done with stock offerings for individual athletes. Buyer beware.”

Wouldn’t this be fun? Here’s who I’d buy stock in: some top agents at Allie Beth Allman, Briggs-Freeman, and Dave Perry Miller. But I would not ignore the young uns like Dallas City Center (blazin’, just blazin’)  Clay Stapp, Rogers Healy, Nathan Grace (hot damn, on fire, Stevie Chaddick is over at Highland Park Village in a boutique NG office yes she is!, yes and Joyce Kelly!), Vivo Reality (Vivo = great video) killing it in Plano, but edging south, and an impressive lone young broker ripping it named Rustin James RealtyRustin SmithKeller Williams Elite at Preston Center — keep an eye on these folks, wowzers, lots of changes over there.  I will unabashedly name the very agents who advertise on this site because they were invited to do so, hand-picked for the very reason that they are dynamite, hard-work-a-holics, and yes, I would place my home in their trust and money on them in a heartbeat: Becky Frey, Dave Perry Miller, Ben Jones, Laurie Mah, Kari Schlegel Kloewer (and her new angel, Tobin), Kyle Crews and the Allie Beth Urban Team of Missy Woehr, Daylon Pereira, Sanders Avrea, Allison Badgley, and Anita (Ani) Nosnik; David Griffin, Hunter Dehn,  Jacqui Bloomquist (this girl gets 50 peeps to an open house on a tundra weekend!), Tom & Gina Branch who kill it in Plano, Colin Lardner, David Maez at Vivo, the queen of “Impossible Sales” Sunny Chaparala — that girl could take a crack house, stage it, make it look like House Beautiful.

We would also put our money on the new Ebby Southlake office — oh is it going to be snazzy. Carolyn Rosson and company, you rule everything in the world west of I-35!

I like this buying stock in agents!

Brad 5: “Stung by some contentious investments in the tech sector back in the day, Realogy will come out of its shell and make at least one big technology move.”

Whatever, just as long as it doesn’t involve Bitcoins.

Brad 6: “Institutional investors who bought blocks of foreclosed single-family homes will begin unloading later in the year as prices rise, giving the market some much-needed inventory and participants a handsome return.” Nice, we will need the inventory, especially in Dallas/Fort Worth, but I think this will affect areas like Garland and Irving. By the way, I think now is a terrific time to buy investment props in Irving, even though Tony and Candice are moving out. (I’ll bet he keeps the Cottonwood Valley house for friends.)

Brad 7: “Redfin will have a successful IPO. CEO Glenn Kelman will be wealthy and his investors will be very happy.” I am very impressed with Redfin, and still need to profile the local Redfin office. Maybe I will go plant my license with Redfin to get in on this IPO?

Brad 8: “The amount of venture capital and private equity pouring into the real estate sector will reach record levels, driving innovation and experimentation in new business models, software and hardware.” This will be manna in Dallas, Texas, where we worship real estate and talk about home prices at every single cocktail party. I offer up CompStack as proof of this, and the fact they came to Dallas, whose commercial RE market is pretty hot to trot.

Brad 9: “Zillow and Trulia will make a horde of acquisitions. Zillow will make one masterstroke purchase or business model move that will be controversial.” I know everyone likes to start their real estate search on Zillow and Trulia, and that’s OK, but they are waaaay off on pricing in Texas because we are a non-disclosure state. Also, some MLS’s are choosing NOT to share data with the third party boys. Look to the Houston Association of Realtors for a poster child in how innovative an MLS can really be.

Yes, MetroTex, I still love you. MWAH. But not so sure on how this prediction will go down in Texas.

Brad 10: “HUD Secretary Shaun Donovan will resign (not under a cloud), and FHA Commissioner Carol Galante will replace him.” Interesting. What are we going to do about Dodd-Frank? Shall we take a vote over which is worse, Dodd-Frank or the ACA also known as Obamacare?

Brad: BONUS prediction:  “We have not heard the last of making agent performance data transparent.”

Face it, agents out there. This is coming and there may even be a drone outside your window RIGHT NOW! I think we need a way to rate or at least PERSONALIZE agents on line that is way more legit than a pricey “I’m the best” (says who?) chest-beating ad. Tiring of vanity ads for agents: let’s talk about the house, that’s what we are buying. And let’s talk about how the agent can best meld with the seller. Do you want to go to a doctor who buys a lot of glossy ads but ignores you in the office? No way. We have to find a way to convey the agents’ personality and zest to the consumer. We are certainly trying to do this on CandysDirt.

Brad: “Happy New Year! May the market be with you.”

Candy: And also with you!