3D INTERSPACE SO­LU­TIONS

Vir­tual real-es­tate tours—the hot ticket in what’s for sale

Times of the Islands - - Real Estate - BY CRAIG GAR­RETT Craig Gar­rett is Group Ed­i­torin-Chief for TOTI Me­dia.

At first it’s odd. You’re view­ing tech­nol­ogy that an­gles and twists ob­jects on a screen like a Ru­bik’s Cube. But the vis­ual sen­sa­tion of 3D sci­ence, much like yaw­ing in the front of a roller­coaster, morphs to fas­ci­na­tion, ul­ti­mately driv­ing a buyer’s in­ter­est. And that’s the hook for 3D Interspace So­lu­tions, a Fort My­ers–based firm that pro­vides 3D imag­ing in real es­tate. Buy­ers ac­cess­ing the tech­nol­ogy use a tool not un­like Google Maps or com­pa­ra­ble video-game sci­ence. The third di­men­sion is a “doll­house” pull­back, zoom­ing into a room, for ex­am­ple, for a vir­tual tour, scrolling a walk-through, look­ing around, spin­ning about to in­spect points of in­ter­est, and then mov­ing on by fol­low­ing vir­tual floor prompts. View­ers use their fin­ger or a mouse to zoom in or pull back.

Real-es­tate agents are hop­ping aboard the 3D sci­ence train pretty quickly, says Sean Radi­gan of 3D Interspace So­lu­tions. He is the real-es­tate half of a busi­ness part­ner­ship that in­cludes Bryce Clerk, an en­gi­neer who dis­cov­ered the cam­era tech­nol­ogy in 2014 at a trade show. Film­ing is a pain­stak­ing process, us­ing ex­pen­sive equip­ment and al­go­rithms. The com­pany has filmed 120 homes and con­dos and has a con­tract with a Sanibel Re­al­tor to cre­ate vir­tual tours of another 60 rental units, Radi­gan says. The com­pany also mea­sures rooms and other spa­ces for a client base now reach­ing from Marco Is­land to Punta Gorda. Real es­tate agents, builders, pri­vate home­own­ers and oth­ers pay about $250 to have a 3D vir­tual tour of a ba­sic house or com­mer­cial prop­erty filmed and up­loaded to a web­site, says Radi­gan, a Sanibel na­tive. Prices move up based on size and other fac­tors. Be­cause of cam­era sen­si­tiv­ity, the imag­ing doesn’t in­clude ex­te­rior shots.

Radi­gan and Clerk have also used the tech­nol­ogy to film a yacht. “Ev­ery­one seems to love it so much,” says Radi­gan. “We ex­pect to see a lot of im­i­ta­tors.”

3D Interspace is us­ing a sys­tem built by Mat­ter­port, a me­dia tech­nol­ogy com­pany based in Sun­ny­vale, Cal­i­for­nia. Its tech­nol­ogy in­volves ma­nip­u­lat­ing space as if hold­ing it, turn­ing it about to peek in­side. For Clerk, dis­cov­er­ing the sci­ence in Cal­i­for­nia was the light­bulb mo­ment, Radi­gan says, his part­ner rush­ing back to Florida with the idea of chang­ing the view­ing of real es­tate, even boats.

The part­ners, how­ever, learned that the tech­nol­ogy re­quires a lot of work. Film­ing in­volves plac­ing the $6,000 cam­era every few feet, snap­ping the shot and re­peat­ing dozens of times. They have trimmed the film­ing process to less than two hours, plus edit­ing, says Radi­gan. There are no en­hance­ments, and the fi­nal prod­uct is more en­gag­ing and in­struc­tive than most static pho­tos. “The way [you] see it is how it ac­tu­ally looks,” he says. “There are a mil­lion gim­micks, but this is tried and true. We’re very much look­ing for­ward to the fu­ture.”

Bryce Clerk (left) and Sean Radi­gan have in­fused sci­ence into real es­tate with their 3D Interspace So­lu­tions in Fort My­ers.

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