[Update: The previous headline of this article referred to "3D home hours." The headline is now corrected to "3D home tours".]
Adding 3D tours to real estate listings is nothing new, however Zillow is now bringing the home selling tool to a much wider audience at a much cheaper price than ever before. Free, in fact.
After a successful trial period with real estate agents, the property promotions giant announced Monday that it will allow all listings to have 3D tours, if the agents or other seller uses an iPhone.
"Making 3D home tours available for sellers and agents to capture and add to any listing, for free, in the U.S. and Canada is a huge milestone in our work to make the real estate transaction a more seamless, on-demand experience for consumers," said Josh Weisberg, Zillow's Senior Director of Product Development, 3D and Computer Vision.
"Previously, 3D tours were only found on high-end or expensive homes, due to the high cost and time-intensive capture process. Now with 3D Home, adding an immersive experience to a home listing is fast, easy, and free, which benefits buyers and sellers at all price points," Weisberg added.
In a statement, Zillow claimed that real estate professionals can capture an entire house in as little as 15-20 minutes, helping them serve more clients at a lower cost. During the 3D Home pilot program, agents reported that listings with 3D tours attracted more potential buyers, earning higher listing views and engagement than those without 3D media.
As noted above, users must have an iPhone to create the 3D home tour.
According to Zillow, the 3D tour is created through an app, which is currently available for iOS devices. The app works by capturing 360-degree panoramic images. When using an iPhone, photos are shot within the app as on-screen instructions provide guidance for capturing the "best possible images," Zillow said.
Then, when the entire house has been shot and photos are uploaded to Zillow, the app uses "several sophisticated technologies in tandem – from computer vision to deep learning – to stitch together seamless 3D tours, enhance photos' exposure, and select thumbnail images that best represent each room."
From there, tours are immediately available in a "My 3D Home" dashboard to edit, share privately, or add directly to a listing on Zillow.
And as per Weisberg’s comment, that the service is now widely available, also included on For Sale By Owner listings, too.
From Zillow's statement:
Today's nationwide launch of 3D Home follows other steps in Zillow's journey toward fundamentally transforming the way people buy and sell homes, including the launch of Zillow Home Loans, and the ongoing rapid expansion of the company's home-buying and –selling program, Zillow Offers.