The main image is courtesy of Tantify, which showcases an elegant, virtually staged luxury studio.
If you are thinking of selling your home, be sure that you understand the benefits of virtual staging and how it can help make your property more appealing to potential buyers.
Virtual staging is the process of inserting realistic looking furniture and décor items (such as rugs, art work, and light fixtures) within digitally altered photos of the interior rooms of a home.
The process can be best conceptualized by imagining that all of the key rooms of your home have been emptied and then virtually and professionally furnished and decorated using state-of-the-art digital imagery. The end product is a collection of photos that are used as part of your home’s listing, with proper labeling for transparency.
This increasingly popular design technology can make a home appear more cohesive, lived-in and attractive to buyers without spending a lot of time or money on traditional physical staging.
Keep reading to learn how innovative real estate agents are maximizing the effectiveness of virtual staging to help their clients sell their homes more quickly, conveniently and cost-effectively.
7 Expert Tips on Using Virtual Staging to Sell Your Home Quickly
- Use High-Quality Photos
- Use Furniture and Decor that Fit the Space
- Focus on Important Rooms & Use Multiple Designs
- Don’t Forget About Exterior Photos
- Hire a Professional Virtual Stager
- Review the Images
- Make the Most of Your Virtual Staging
Use High-Quality Photos
One of the most important pieces of guidance when using virtual staging is to take high-quality photos. This means using pictures that are clear and well-lit. The quality of the photos you use will determine how realistic and lifelike your virtual staging looks. The furniture and fixtures will look inadequate and unrealistic if placed in low-quality photos. However, within high-quality photos, everything will look realistic, cohesive and inviting.
Most importantly, high-quality photos have a greater likelihood of capturing the attention of potential buyers. In the online world, people are bombarded incessantly with images on a daily basis. So you need to make sure your photos stand out in a visually cluttered digital world. High-quality photos will do just that – they’ll grab the attention of viewers and make potential buyers want to learn more about your home.
Use Furniture and Decor that Fit the Space
When virtually staging a home, be sure to use furniture and decor that fit the space. You’d be surprised how many people try to squeeze too much furniture into a room or choose pieces that aren’t the right size or scale.
Not only can this make a room look cluttered and unappealing, but it can also make the space appear smaller than it actually is. Instead, take the time to measure the room and choose pieces that are the right size and scale. This will create a much more inviting and visually appealing space.
On the topic of clutter, also be aware that many vendors of virtual staging software and services are able to remove items from your original photos. This service is often referred to as decluttering. This can be especially helpful if you are unable to remove large, heavy pieces prior to your photo shoots. However, be sure to check beforehand, with whomever you plan to use.
Also be sure to choose furniture and decor that complements the style of the property. For example, if you have a colonial-style home, don’t put in overly modern furniture as it can create a “stylistic-disconnect” with potential buyers, as the unexpected design combination could conjure a negative reaction.
Another thing to remember is not to display furniture that is too iconic to your unique personal style that might unnecessarily alienate or distract potential buyers. Instead, focus on choosing pieces that appeal to a wider range of people. This will help potential buyers to envision the property as their own and will increase the likelihood of an offer being made.
Focus on Important Rooms & Use Multiple Designs
Virtual staging requires that you keep key rooms of your home in mind. The living room, kitchen, dining room, and bedrooms are typically the most important spaces in a house, so making sure that they look their best is crucial. This isn’t to say you can’t stage other rooms, but if you’re pressed for time or money, prioritize appropriately.
Another consideration is having multiple stagings for the same room. While most rooms have a primary purpose, such as a bedroom or a kitchen, other rooms can also serve multiple functions.
For instance, a guest room can double as an office or a playroom. A den can be used as a media room or a home gym. By showing multiple purposes for a given room, not only will you give potential buyers a better sense of how a space can be utilized, you can create multiple concepts that will appeal to an even broader audience of prospective buyers.
This tactic can also help to make a small room appear more spacious, functional and versatile.
Don’t Forget About Exterior Photos
Though the primary focus of virtual staging is for interior spaces, a related digital imagery service is touching up exterior photos of a listed home. The most popular service for exterior photos is referred to as virtual twilight photography (or virtual dusk photography).
This is the practice of altering the sky to emulate dusk lighting to showcase the exterior of your home in literally the best light possible. According to HomeJab, properties with twilight photos generated 3 times the number of clicks as properties that did not list with twilight photos.
Seasoned real estate professionals have known for years the importance of making a strong first impression with an attractive exterior photo of your home. Twilight is a critical element that can help foster an immediate emotional bond between prospective buyers and your home.
Besides dealing with narrow scheduling times necessary to capture ideal exterior lighting in real life, sometimes the weather may not cooperate at all over an extended period, as well. These two realities alone are sufficient reasons to sign up for virtual twilight photographic services.
Having the ability to showcase the main exterior view of your home in the best possible light is critical for generating interest and with virtual twilight editing at your disposal, this will capability will never be left to chance.
Virtually altered exterior photos can also show to-be completed projects, such as driveways and landscaping.
Hire a Professional Virtual Stager
While virtual staging may seem simple, it can be quite complex. That’s why it’s important to hire a professional virtual stager who understands how to use light, color, and composition to create an inviting space.
With professional staging help, you can be confident that your home will make a greater impression on potential buyers – no matter how or where they view it. They have the experience and knowledge to know which furniture and accessories will work best in each room. Plus, they can provide guidance on how best to use photos to showcase your property.
Just like with any service, you generally get what you pay for. It may be tempting to hire a less expensive designer, but remember that you’re counting on these photos to help sell your home. So, it’s essential to make sure you’re getting high-quality photos that will make a positive and persuasive impact. It’s worth paying a little extra to have peace of mind that your home is being presented in the best light possible.
We also recommend getting familiar with leading virtual staging vendors and their latest offerings to be aware of what is possible. Many professional virtual stagers you contact may already use white-label versions of these platforms or have direct partnerships with these best-in-class specialists.
A seasoned professional will also protect you, the seller, by following industry guidelines to label virtual images appropriately, so that there is no confusion on what is real and what has been virtually altered. Transparency is key to foster trust between buyer and seller.
Prominent and accurate labeling is especially important when making changing to photos that can be classified as virtual renovations. These types of “digital alterations” refer to modifications that would require a non-trivial upgrade in real life, such as removing a wall, adding a window, or finishing a room.
On the topic of virtual renovations, we hope to see greater usage of this type of virtual staging, as we believe it will introduce more efficiencies into the market. For example, an effective usage of virtual renovations can help prevent the common scenario of homesellers either investing in the wrong pre-sale renovations or completing renovations not to quality standards of the ultimate buyer.
When either of these scenarios occur, both homeseller and homebuyer incur a combination of inconvenience, plus a loss of time and money.
Review the Images
Once your virtual staging is complete, review the results carefully before making any final decisions. You want to catch any errors – no matter how small – that might turn buyers away. This might include ensuring that all furniture is positioned correctly and that there are no obvious mistakes, such as having duplicate items or floating objects.
Here are several more things to look out for:
- Make sure that the furniture and decorations are appropriate for the style of the room
- Check that the furniture is placed realistically and not clipped into objects like walls
- Ensure that the lighting is consistent throughout the image
- Make sure that the image looks realistic as a whole
By taking the time to review virtual staging images thoroughly, you can ensure that they make a positive impression on potential buyers or tenants.
Make the Most of Your Virtual Staging
Though you may be hesitant to put your home on the market without first making some major changes or renovations, don’t underestimate the power of virtual staging!
Virtual staging is a great way to save time and money while still making your home look its best when selling it. Hiring a professional who can make strategic changes to your home’s décor and furnishings through computer-generated images gives potential buyers a much better sense of what your property has to offer.
When done right, virtual staging can be an incredibly effective tool for helping you get top dollar for your home. So, if you’re thinking about putting your house on the market, be an innovative homeowner and consider making use of virtual staging.
Virtual Staging Galleries & Catalogues
- BoxBrownie Virtual Staging Gallery
- HomeJab Virtual Staging Furniture Collections
- PadStyler Catalogue of Virtual Staging Furniture & Sets
- PadStyler Virtual Staging Before & After Images
- PhotoUp Virtual Staging Examples
- PhotoUp Virtual Staging Library of Furniture & Styles
- Tantify Virtual Staging Portfolio
- VirtualStaging.com Examples
Virtual Staging Resources
- The Many Benefits of Virtual Staging
- How to Take the Perfect Photos for Virtual Staging
- Capturing Curb Appeal: 4 Real Estate Photography Tips
- Photos Can Make or Break that Crucial First Impression for Potential Home Buyers
- HomeJab Real Estate Photography for the Virtual Era Blog
- Virtual Staging: Legal Risks of Misrepresentation Claims
- Virtual Staging: Risk of Violating REALTORS® Code of Ethics
More Recommended Real Estate Reading
- A “Before” vs “Virtual” vs “Real Life” Renovation Case Study
- 5 Examples of Older Homes Returning Maximum Profit with Renovations
- Need Renovation Inspiration? Try These Innovative Design Resources!
- 4 Ways to Maximize Your Home’s Value
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