Virtual Home Tour Revolution

Open homes – a necessary evil of house-hunters everywhere.

Rushing to make it there in the half-hour slot, taking off your shoes, signing the book, awkwardly shuffling past people up and down the stairs.

What if you could weed out all the houses that don’t even come close to what you’re looking for without having to go through all of that rigmarole?

Or in reverse, what if you could easily take a look at a property that you may have discounted and not bothered to go and see in person?

That’s where virtual home tours come in – putting a new spin on traditional home-viewing.

A recent article predicted Kiwi house-hunters may soon swap open homes for virtual reality.

Open2view is leading the way…

Open2view is already at the forefront of this technology with its 3D HomeView tours.

House-hunters can explore a property from every angle at their own pace on their computers, smartphones and tablets without having to physically step foot in the house.

HomeView uses 3D photography to capture and create interactive content with three different perspectives:

1. Walkthrough – navigate seamlessly from room to room and view it at any angle.

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2. Dollhouse – zoom out to a 3D dollhouse view.

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3. Floor plan – see everything in its place from above.

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Granted there are no virtual reality headsets but I bet they play havoc with your hair…

Virtual reality may not replace open homes entirely, but our HomeView tours allow would-be buyers to see a house from perspectives they would never get in real life, so there’s no denying it has its place.

We’re all used to having most things instantly available at our fingertips these days – and now house hunting is no different!

Check out our current listings to explore a property at your own pace, from every angle, by taking your own 3D HomeView tour – just look for the HomeView icon.

Or contact Open2view’s teams in New Zealand and Australia today to find out more about 3D HomeView.

What do you think of the idea of house hunting via virtual reality? Let us know in the comments below or on our Facebook page.

Real estate ‘mini-movies’. Effective or excessive?

We’re big fans of HD video. It’s just one of the many services we offer here at Open2view.  Using high quality video to take viewers on a journey through a property and letting them ‘live the dream’ for a while, is an incredibly effective and powerful marketing tool for the real estate industry.

Without a doubt, it can be even more effective if that video goes viral.

‘Mini-movies’ are not new to the real estate industry. There have been some very, errrm, interesting examples in the past:

Real estate agents starring in their own property marketing videos is also nothing new, but a recent video that was brought to our attention left us wondering if this style of mini-movie making is very clever marketing, or perhaps a bit of overkill?

Shaken not stirred

Real estate agent Darren Berley claims to have an ‘Australian Real Estate First’ with his property video for a Penthouse Apartment in Perth, starring as 007 himself, in a James Bond inspired ‘mini-movie’ and performing all of his own stunts, including abseiling and choreographed fight scenes.

The videoette does manage to interweave some of the properties stunning features into the storyline, but one can’t help but think the whole thing might just be a bit of fantasy role play for Mr. Berley? If you have a spare 8 minutes and 15 seconds, take a look and let us know what you think….

Whatever your opinion may be, if the end result is a sale, then the mini-movie has fulfilled it’s purpose.

Check out our latest property listings featuring HD video tours on our website:

Open2view New Zealand
Open2view Australia 

2014. Year of the Real Estate Video.

Video is one of the most powerful and engaging forms of marketing. It’s the number one form of content that people consume on the web and the web is now the number one place people are looking for property.

The ability to tell a story about a property and connect emotionally with a buyer, is key to a successful real estate video.

Every property is different and may require a different approach when the time comes to film. That’s something our photographers and videographers understand fully!

Rachel von Nordeck & Paul Willetts have been with Open2view for almost a year now. We thought we’d have a quick catch up with them and take a look at some of the great high definition videos they are producing for their clients in the Christchurch South area…

What led you both into the field of photography?  

Rachel: Photography has always been a facet of my career. I completed a BA in Design with a minor in Photography at university and in some way or another, I have ‘made pictures’ throughout my career—from directing shoots for magazine spreads to graphic design layouts to video production.

Paul: I studied Photography back at Secondary School and guess was quite good at it, seeing as after two years as I was awarded Top Scholar in New Zealand for Bursary Photography. I then did what I thought I should do and go to University where I studied Physical Education for four years. This lead me to become a Scuba Diving instructor in Christchurch. When I decided to put the scuba diving and photography together I got a job in Grand Cayman. This was where my Video Camera Operator experience began. For the last 10 years I’ve been travelling around the world (Grand Cayman, Thailand, Egypt, Bahamas) working as an Underwater Camera Operator. Once I reached Egypt I was involved filming and editing footage for Film Festivals and a number of Freediving World Championships.

Seeing as I was born and bred in Christchurch, after the September quake I was drawn to return to see what it was all about and to feel more connected to the experience that friends and family were experiencing during that time. On returning I got a job as a camera operator for Trackside TV, where I still lend my skills occasionally.

Apart from real estate, what else do you enjoy photographing?

Rachel:  Anything where I get to blow bubbles! I have been extraordinarily lucky to have experienced many underwater ‘National Geographic’ moments in the last 10 years as an underwater camera operator. I’ve filmed everything from wildlife for documentaries to international free diving competitions and I loved every minute of it!

Paul: Its been over 3 years since I last had the chance to go diving and film fish. I miss being surrounded by schools of 1000+ snapper and barracuda and being able to be in my little underwater world amongst manta rays, whale sharks, hammerheads, etc etc etc. Think this year I might have to try and get back in the warm water somewhere on a holiday.


What’s been the most interesting property you’ve photographed/filmed recently? 

Rachel: On a stunning Canterbury day, anything with a view will do! I love shooting the hill properties with a gorgeous aspect overlooking Christchurch.

Paul: I guess all the property videos that we have done this year have been fun. We are continuing tweeking them and as no two houses or agent are the same I think you have to be flexible with your approach. I did enjoy filming our first property video on Factory Road in Little Akaloa, as it allowed me to get my feet wet at least being in the stream with the eels. I am really enjoying having the steadicam rig since Christmas and is providing a great challenge as it is something I have never used before. Well until we filmed 25A Kahu Road.  

What are you most looking forward to in the year ahead:

Rachel:  I am most looking forward to continuing to build our business and developing my skills as a photographer. I’m still so new to working in real estate, I’ve got plenty more to learn.

Paul: With the huge amount of video on the internet these days and the strength it has as a marketing media I am really looking forward to pushing HD video for Real Estate. Even on returning to New Zealand I saw a hole in the market.  I believe when it comes to internet / websites and technology New Zealand is a little slow at picking things up and I really want to get Video into the Real Estate market and have it more commonly used. Oh, but most of all, building my Agent numbers and doing more photography again.

Let your listing stand out from the crowd.
Lets take a look at some of the recent high definition videos that Rachel & Paul have filmed. Each offers a different style to suit the purpose of the video…

Powerful Perspectives
A vendor’s stories can bring a property to life: how they came to be here; what they’ve loved about their home; and how it may break their hearts to leave. These stories show a prospective buyer not just the property, but the lifestyle that goes with it! With video you can get a real sense of the space of the home, but you can also convey powerful emotions.

A Testament to You
There can be no greater impact than a face-to-face testimonial. And if you can’t drag your convert along with you, video is the next best thing.

Capture Your Next Client
Yes, anyone can walk through a house with a video camera but filming a space in a way that captivates the viewer requires a more creative and artistic approach. Open2view video services include filming, editing, color enhancing and customisation for your websites and social media.

And there you have it.  Three great examples of how a well produced video can take your property marketing efforts to the next level.  To find out more about our HD Video Tours and the other services Open2view have to offer, check out our Services Page on our website.

And if you’re on facebook, stop by and say hello to the team at Open2view Christchurch South