Staging FAQs: What About Virtual Staging?

imagesCASOPC3VStaging FAQs-it’s b-a-a-a-c-k! Snappy answers to your most pressing questions about preparing your property for sale, Virtual Staging has been a hot topic lately.

Essentially photo-shopping furniture/furnishings into shots of an empty room, TRH takes the position that if Virtual Staging is done well, it can work. But to clarify: “done well” isn’t about technical perfection-it means that your buyers will “get it”. And “it works” means you’ll get traffic AND solid offers.

Probably a big surprise to those who see Home Stagers as midwives for the rental furniture industry…but today, Home Staging in Westchester County is as much a strategy as an aesthetic. The Refreshed Home believes effective Home Staging is anything you can do to better the market position of your property, while easing the minds of buyers, sellers and their agents.

While Virtual Staging is certainly a less costly alternative to bringing in rental furniture- is it best for your property, and will it get you the offer you want? Your Realtor is your best guide, as it really depends on the situation: your property, your market,  who your buyer is, and your expectations

  • Buyers making a lateral move,  looking at common/familiar floor plans like a Colonial or Ranch can generally more easily see themselves in these spaces. BUT  buyers still want to be wowed…especially if they’re spending a lot of money. If you’ve got a mega house with lots of extras, will your buyers be persuaded of its value by pictures, or just a few basics?
  • First time buyers, or those making a dramatic move (up-sizing or down-sizing) will usually have a more difficult time of things, especially in spaces with unique layouts or proportions. Seeing and touching real live furniture in the soaring or angular space of a contemporary house, or in the irregular space of a Tudor might more quickly ease a buyers mind more than an aesthetically pleasing online picture.

Two points to consider:

Technologically perfect can look too real in photos, confusing or alienating buyers when they get to the house. Confused or alienated buyers do not make offers. One of the more successful techniques I’ve seen shows the reasonably obviously virtually staged room listing photo immediately after one of the empty, non-staged room photo. 

Virtual Staging is not an alternative to a house being clean and in good repair. If there is faded or peeling paint, a dirty kitchen, an overgrown yard, worn or shabby floors, it’s the last thing a seller should spend time thinking about. Period. It’s a big mistake to ask  buyers to trust what they don’t see AND not to trust what they do see. 

Listings always attract the most attention the first few weeks on the market, so it’s imperative that whatever you can do, it be the best you can do, from Day One.

Listing soon-or live, but no results? Talk to me today-or come to one of my upcoming Home Staging  Classes at Bronxville Adult School, (3/27) or Yorktown’s  John Hart Memorial Library (4/3) to learn how you can get your house noticed, and SOLD! 

Marie Graham is an Interior Decorator, an Accredited Home Stager, and owner of The Refreshed Home. Bringing a thoughtful approach to the creative process, contact her directly 914.607.2895 or marie@therefreshedhome.com