As the real estate industry continues to evolve, virtual staging has emerged as a game-changer for real estate professionals looking to market their properties more effectively. Virtual staging involves the use of computer software to add furniture, decor, and other design elements to photos of empty or sparsely furnished rooms. This technology can help potential buyers better envision themselves living in a space, which can ultimately lead to more sales.
If you're a real estate professional looking to incorporate virtual staging into your marketing strategy, this guide will provide you with the essentials to get started.
When it comes to virtual staging, the quality of the finished product is paramount. A poorly executed virtual staging job can be distracting and turn off potential buyers, so it's essential to choose a virtual staging company with a strong reputation for delivering high-quality work. Look at reference photos from a company’s website and check how realistic photos look. Additionally, check the selection of furniture and accessories customers have access to - when virtual staging properties, you want to ensure there is ample selection to choose the right type of interior design style for prospective buyers.
And, especially for those who want a quick turn-around, check how long it takes to get a final image. How many revisions might it take to get to that final product that showcases your property in the best way? Some staging companies require customers to describe the changes wanted, while at others, you can place furniture and other elements in the way that you want. With some apps or services, you can get your virtually staged image in minutes. Others? It could take days. Thinking about what your timeline looks like is key.
If you’re able to, ask for references and read online reviews to get a sense of their level of expertise, quality, and customer service. What are you trying to accomplish, and how can your virtual staging company help you achieve that?
Before you start the virtual staging process, it's crucial to have a clear understanding of who your target market is. Are you selling to first-time homebuyers, families with kids, or those seeking an investment property? Understanding your audience can help you tailor your virtual staging to their specific needs and preferences.
For example, if you're targeting families with kids, you might want to focus on creating a warm, welcoming atmosphere while emphasizing the size of a space. For this audience, you might want to include comfy furniture that can double as storage while focusing on a more minimalist approach (every parent knows the dangers of having too many decorative accessories with kids running around). On the other hand, if you're targeting those seeking an investment property, you might want to highlight unique features of a home. Is the flooring newly refinished or is the hardwood the original flooring? Add furniture or accessories that emphasize these unique elements. How is a home distinct from others in the area or market, and how can we stage a home to highlight these features?
Some virtual staging apps or services allow for numerous virtual staging designs, enabling you to curate your property for a variety of audiences. If your target audience is families, you’ll want a property curated with that in mind. If your audience encompasses families, bachelors, and more, you’d likely want images that are curated for those as well.
Virtual staging is an excellent tool for showcasing the potential of an empty or sparsely furnished space. However, it can be equally important if a space is cluttered or pre-furnished.
When properties are already furnished, it can be difficult to market a property to a specific audience. For example, if the homeowner enjoyed contemporary furniture but you’re seeking to stage it for a family, this can deter your audience from looking further into the potential of the home. You might want to then look for services that allow you to easily remove all furniture from a room. This allows you to redesign a property to your liking, opening up new possibilities to showcase the potential of a property. Ensure companies offer this feature, as it can be integral in getting the best value and marketing for a property.
Finally, virtual staging can be a powerful tool for telling a story about the property. Use virtual staging to showcase the potential uses of each room, highlight unique features, or create a specific ambiance or mood.
For example, you might use virtual staging to create a cozy reading nook in a spare bedroom or a home office in a bonus room. By using virtual staging to tell a story, you can help potential buyers better envision themselves living in the space and ultimately increase the likelihood of a sale.
Virtual staging is an increasingly popular tool for real estate professionals looking to market their properties more effectively. By utilizing it, you can create compelling marketing materials that help your properties stand out from the crowd. At Apply Design, we know what is important for real estate professionals and created Apply Design to answer those needs.