Architectural Visualization 3D Rendering Services

Virtual Tour Equipment and Software: Are They Worth the Investment?

Virtual tours are rocking the real estate industry. Immersive and realistic, they allow viewers to see and explore structures even before they’re built. But these simulated environments are more than a passing trend. It’s grown to be a multi-billion industry that’s estimated to be worth $6.5 billion by 2030.

If you’ve come to this article, you’re probably thinking of using them to boost your profits in real estate. It’s worth considering since: 

  • Fifty percent of buyers prefer them over photographed images.
  • Properties with virtual tours receive 49% more qualified leads (Matterport).

Combine that with the fact that 47% of buyers made offers on homes without physically touring properties, and it’s easy to come to the conclusion that virtual tours can give you a competitive edge. 

But is it worth investing in your own virtual tour equipment and software? Find out with Plus Render.

What Is Virtual Tour Software?

Virtual tour software refers to software that allows users to create realistic environments that depict real estate projects. Knowing how to operate them effectively yields 360-degree views of properties that clients can navigate and interact with. 

They may or may not use VR headsets. These tours can also be embedded on websites so anyone who visits them can easily explore listings. Additionally, users can control the angles and magnification of what they see, providing the utmost flexibility and convenience. 

Who Uses Virtual Tour Software?

Virtual tour software is used by architectural visualization professionals and firms. Since this software comes with tools and functionalities that can be complex to laymen, users must have technical knowledge and experience to properly operate it. 

At Plus Render, we rely on our Building Information Modeling (BIM) specialists to flesh out concepts, building specifications, animations, renderings, and virtual reality models.

Should You Invest in Virtual Tour Equipment and Software?

Thinking of coming up with your own virtual tour? 

There are several considerations you need to think about. 

Virtual Tour Software Requires Specialized Knowledge To Operate

Unfortunately, real estate virtual tour software isn’t designed for novices. The end results are highly technical in nature and so are the processes involved in creating them. Just as 3D motion picture studios require animators who have specific technical expertise, creating virtual tours demands familiarity with complex software that can be time-consuming to learn before you can achieve impressive results.

Additionally, artists who work on virtual tours need to be familiar with elements like lighting, textures, colors, angles, and more. They also need to have a good grasp of spatial reasoning, 3D modeling, and how to translate these factors into a virtual tour.

While there will always be shortcuts like mobile apps that offer DIY virtual house tours, you will always be limited by their features and the fact that you can only create tours for properties that have already been built.

Professional virtual tour software like +Reality still offers the most features, customizations, and polished results. If you’re looking to incorporate virtual tours into your services, you wouldn’t want anything but the best.

Creating Virtual Tours Require Special Equipment

There’s a long list of equipment that you’ll need to procure if you want to create your own virtual tour. The most important is a 360 camera to capture the kinds of images you need. You’ll also have to go shopping for lenses, mounts, microphones, lighting equipment, headsets, video editing software, and more. Once you have them, you’ll need to make sure that you have a good storage space where they can be safely kept.

While selecting equipment, you’ll find that there is a seemingly endless array of specifications that you need to evaluate, understand, and choose from. If you’re choosing a 360 camera, for example, you’ll need to review screen display ratios and resolutions, stabilization features, the lenses it uses, shooting modes, and more. 

That can be a lot to take in if you’re main expertise is in real estate or construction. By poring over spec sheets, you’ll have less time to focus on the big picture. You might also purchase equipment and later discover that it doesn’t fulfill what you want it to do.

And don’t forget—once you have all these tools, you have to learn how to use them.

Buying Virtual Tour Equipment and Software Requires a Significant Investment

Software and all that equipment don’t come cheap. One of the key pieces of equipment you’ll need is the camera. There are 360 cameras that sell for a few hundred dollars but if you want professional results, you have to invest in professional-grade equipment. 

High-end cameras cost several thousand dollars. The Insta 360 Pro 2 sells for around $5,000 while the Titan costs over $15,000.

Apart from the camera, you also have to make room in your budget for tripods, lights, software licenses, etc.

It Takes a Village

Plus Render has been an architectural visualization studio for over 14 years. During that time, we’ve served hundreds of satisfied clients and worked on thousands of projects. But we didn’t get there on our own. We have a team with different specializations who are awesome at what they do.

If you’re trying to create a virtual tour on your own, expect that there will be noticeable differences between a render that was made by a real estate professional and a well-oiled team of 3D design professionals who have been in the industry for over a decade. 

What You Get By Outsourcing Your Virtual Tours

By now, we’ve established that creating your own virtual tour if you’re a real estate professional may not be the best idea. It takes a lot of effort, technical skill, and a considerable budget. Plus, it’s far from being a one-man job.

So, what do you get by outsourcing your virtual tours to professionals like Plus Render?

Saves Time

Delegating the task to professionals saves time. You don’t have to canvass a bunch of technical equipment and software. You don’t have to learn them all. You skip the trial-and-error process. And you’ll definitely get more done in less time. 

Ensures Professional Results

Most learners don’t get the results they want when they first try something. The same goes for virtual tours—a highly technical task. 

You’re exploring the possibility of adding virtual tours to your marketing materials so you want something that reflects your professionalism, credibility, and knowledge of the industry. 

You won’t get that by shooting and editing your own virtual tours but you will get the results and features you’ve been dreaming of by working with people who have spent years perfecting their craft.

Saves Money

Digital devices, software licenses, and equipment are always expensive, especially if you’re looking for the best. The good news is you can get the best people and the best tools by working with an architectural rendering firm like Plus Render. 

Because designing virtual environments is our bread and butter, our tools and equipment need to be the best and are constantly updated. By working with us, you also get our expertise and the kind of virtual tours that will blow your customers away.

Instead of doing everything yourself and trying to learn everything, take a page from global commerce and outsource it. You’ll save money and get the results you want.

You Can Focus on Growing Your Business

Who else will manage your practice but you? By taking your attention away from the big picture and diving into the details of virtual tour production, there’s a big chance that your bottom line will suffer. 

You’re the only one who knows what’s best for your real estate, architecture, or construction firm. Don’t risk it by spreading yourself too thin. If you spend too much time on small details and try to do everything yourself, you’ll lose sight of your big-picture goals.

Investing in Virtual Tour Equipment and Software: The Verdict

If you’re genuinely interested in creating your own virtual tours and are looking to pursue it by putting up your own firm someday, then by all means go and invest in virtual tour equipment and software. But for most real estate professionals, this isn’t a viable solution. 

You may be looking to save some dollars and develop new competencies but ultimately, it’s best to leave it to the experts so you can give your clients an unparalleled customer experience that they won’t soon forget. 

As mentioned, amassing your own equipment and software takes time, a lot of money, different skills, and practice. Dedicating so many resources will take you away from what you really want to do, which is to improve your marketing collaterals and win business for your firm.

Plus Render: Time-Tested Experts in Virtual Tours

Plus Render has all the virtual tour equipment and software you need for immersive, engaging, and compelling presentations. We also have a multi-specialty team that can do justice to any rendering project. 

We accept clients from anywhere in the world. To date, we’ve completed projects across 24 countries. 

In return, we offer quality service, reasonable costs, and an unwavering dedication to our clients. For more information, explore our website, send us an email, or book a call.

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