Surf City real estate company petitions for commercial usage of drones


SURF CITY, NC (WWAY)–From delivering a pizza to touring a neighborhood, business owners are finding ways to use drone technology. One Surf City man is trying to use drones to keep his real estate business soaring high above the rest.

Chris Rackley, president of Lewis Realty Associates INC., says he wants to use a drone to take pictures and film homes his company is selling. “With this day and age we do so much internet marketing the drone gives such a great vantage point. From a low altitude you can see the lay out of the property, you can see the roof lines, you can see how the property sits within its neighborhood,” Rackley said.

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But it’s not all about business for Rackley.

“I’m a bit of a tech geek. I have to admit that I’ve always been fascinated with aviation and photography and this is really just a blend,” Rackley said.

The chance to blend all of his interests doesn’t come without some hoops to jump through. “We filed out about a 60 page document and sent it in late last week and we are waiting for a reply back from the FAA,” Rackley said.

In 2012 the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) began allowing commercial companies to petition to use drones. Rackley says this is uncharted territory. “A handful of us are kind of ground breakers because the rules aren’t there yet.”