Lewis Realty Associates, Inc., a local Topsail Island leader in real estate technology, has recently introduced Virtual Reality for their vacation rentals and sales properties in December 2015. 

Lewis Realty handles a large inventory of vacation rental homes and properties for sale. Quite often a question arises such as, "where is the master suite?" or "where is the children's bedroom in connection with the rest of the property?" The answers are difficult for the consumers to visualize until they can personally view the property.

Chris Rackley, president of Lewis Realty, has always been at the forefront of the latest technology and being a veteran of the local real estate market, he began looking for a more modern solution to assisting the consumer with a "visual aid".

After researching the newest technology, Rackley decided to partner with Matterport from Mountain View, CA.

Matterport provides a state of the art motorized "robot" camera complete with multiple lens and infrared sensors that creates a virtual HD 3D model of a property. It allows the user to virtually walk through every square inch of a property and allows them to zoom out to view in "dollhouse" or floor plan modes.

The user is able to see how each room is situated within the rest of the property as well as being able to see even the finest of detail while taking the virtual walk through.

"This is not to be confused with the boiler plate virtual tour that many companies have been offering for years. This is true immersion into the home from anywhere in the world and it is not an inexpensive technology; however, we strive to be the first in utilizing the latest technology for our real estate company," said Rackley.

While the technology provides a solution for traditional computer and mobile device users to visit the homes virtually; the 3D models true power comes with a new and growing consumer technology in the form of devices such as Samsung's Gear VR Headset or the Occolous Rift Headset. This provides the user a true "out of science fiction" view placing the user inside the home.

Lewis Realty is working toward a complete roll out of this new technology on each of its vacation rentals and has also started creating models for some of its higher end sales properties.

Lewis Realty has been a leader in real estate technology in the Topsail area since the mid 90's .  

Most recently Lewis Realty was the first real estate company in the area to obtain a FAA Exemption to use "drones" for real estate after several years of pioneering research locally.