By Jesse McCarl
We all know that home staging can boost the value of a listing exponentially. But what if you’re selling an abandoned property? Or the listing just doesn’t seem to pop in your MLS photos? Only 1 out of 10 people can mentally visualize the potential of a property. This means 90% of your customers need a home staged in order to truly fall in love! That’s where virtual staging comes in!
What is Virtual Staging?
Virtual staging is a way to furnish or decorate vacant listings and rooms… without having to actually furnish or decorate. You create all the elements of the space online without ever touching the physical place.
You can post pictures of the rooms with different color schemes, simple layouts, or whatever else will best empower the viewer to imagine himself or herself in that space. You can change countertops, flooring, or even cabinets. All of this can be done with a simple listing photograph.
This is ideal for clients who are moving from out of state and cannot regularly visit your properties. For your own benefit, this strategy is great for simply promoting your properties online through any site or social platform where you share listing photos. It’s also a great money saver.
Here are some before and after photos:
How Can I Do It?
Hiring a professional to do real life staging will cost you around $6,000. Staging costs total can get as high as $30,000. So even though must virtual staging platforms cost money, it’s nothing compared to those massive figures. It puts in perspective how valuable this part of the selling process is.
You can usually find free samples of the various platforms before you make any kind of commitment. Some of the ones we recommend include Obeo vStager, CirclePix, or Virtually Staging Properties. (Let us know in the comments if we missed any.)
Once you have your freshly staged listing photos, it’s time to do something with them. Post them on social media platforms where people access your listings. At broker previews and open houses, include hardcopies (or copies on a tablet/device) of the pictures to really ignite the imaginations of potential buyers.
If you have clients who seem really invested but are still on the fence, consider walking through the virtual staging process with them. Let them pick the colors and patterns so that they feel ownership over the room before they even realize they’ve made up their mind.