May 27, 2018

Will No-Fly Zones Dictate the Future of Drone Use?

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Will No-Fly Zones Dictate the Future of Drone Use?

At, addresses nationwide can be registered and added to a map of properties where owners have expressed their desire to keep drones away. Similar to a Do Not Call list, NoFlyZone is sharing the addresses with a coalition of seven drone manufacturers, who will pass the information on to their users and code geofences around the registered properties to physically keep drones from flying near them.

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NoFlyZone founder and CEO Ben Marcus notes that participation by drone companies is voluntary, and it is up to them to ensure their users are complying with the no-fly list.

"We cannot guarantee that no drones will fly over a registered property, but the number should be greatly reduced," Marcus says.

Interest in the service has soared since its launch in early February, and NoFlyZone’s coalition is expected to expand to include more drone makers, he says. And nearly 10,000 properties per week have been registered on the site, he adds.

This isn’t necessarily bad news for real estate professionals who are eagerly awaiting a legal clearing for commercial drone use in the country. NoFlyZone is planning an app that will allow home owners to customize their preferences for the airspace above their homes, potentially granting their agents special access to use drones above their properties.

Of course, all of that won’t mean much until the FAA finalizes its drone rules, which won’t happen for another two years. Currently, the FAA bars the use of commercial drones, but last month, it released proposed rules to grant permission for those weighing less than 55 pounds to fly at up to 500 feet above ground. However, the rules would forbid commercial drones from flying at night and require operators to pass a written test.

The FAA is seeking public comment on the proposed rules through April 24.

—REALTOR® Magazine