The popularity of virtual was already increasing in 2020 pre-Covid and then when Covid hit it became a lifeline for our business and since the housing market opened in May 2020, it's become one of our staple services. With lockdown number 2 underway, the volume of enquiries for virtual staging is once more on the increase.
Ceri, our founder, says:
"Like you, I was extremely cynical about the potential benefits of virtual staging and whether they would deliver benefits.
I'm now an absolute advocate of virtual staging. Having seen first hand, it's versatility and high quality - it's a cost effective solution for many property scenarios."
There's so many reasons why virtual staging has proven to be a consistent marketing tool - these include it's versatility, the fact it does not involve any physical presence in your home or property, its extremely cost effective and can be produced in a matter of days.
So What is Virtual Staging?
Virtual staging uses technology to transform any space, indoors or out. This incredible technology allows more than just a walk-though of a property - in fact it's an extremely effective tool for buyers, renters, investors, lenders, developers, valuers etc) to plan and visualise what a property could look like without the expense that would otherwise be required through building works. It also allows for changes to be implemented quickly to cater for changing design ideas, again without the associated cost of actual building works.
It's a cost-effective alternative to traditional property staging and home staging, however, it can also be a great supplement to traditional staging - if you like, think of virtual staging as an appetiser, before the main meal (home staging or property staging)! Virtual staging showcases any room, no matter how big or small, no matter whether it is already furnished or unfurnished, no matter if a property is new or old. It's uses are wide and varied.
Prior to the pandemic, virtual staging was perceived to be an expensive nice-to-have, non-essential marketing tool - to be used mainly for premium property listings, where the return on investment could be justified. Digital imaging technology has improved significantly in recent years, resulting in high quality output which is now much more accessible and affordable for any property.
Choosing and installing virtual furniture and accessories, fixtures and fittings, changing wall colours, changing room uses (eg. bedroom to bathroom, sitting room to kitchen) and floors of a property, enables the potential viewer of the virtual images to see the perceived potential of the property.
Virtual Staging During a Pandemic
Since the housing market opened on 13 July, there has been an increase in the number of estate agents using virtual staging. Its increase in use has undoubtedly been fuelled by the government’s Covid-19 guidance. This advised estate agents to minimise the number of physical property viewings they undertake and encouraged the use of virtual solutions to qualify potential buyers.
Although the housing market remains open during this second lockdown (unlike the first lockdown), we are sure that virtual staging services once more will continue to prove popular. This, combined with a mini housing boom, has put unprecedented pressure on estate agents so we foresee an ongoing and increasing demand for virtual staging services.
What are the Benefits of Virtual Staging?
Virtual staging is one of a number of virtual services which can enhance the perceived value of a property. It also ticks the safety box for anyone concerned with having strangers walking through their home during viewings.
Using virtual staging improves marketing content which in turn results in increased interest which ultimately leads to quicker and potential higher sales.
Properties can rent within a matter of hours of using virtual images and properties can also sell quicker.
What the Future Holds for Virtual Staging
As we are still in the middle of a pandemic and no known "end date", the popularity of virtual staging will continue. Virtual staging is also now being combined with 360 Virtual Tours so the viewer can virtually walk around a property - from the comfort of their home! This is incredible. Although it's use is not universal presently, there will come a day when it will become routinely used in property marketing collateral.
Some Typical Uses of Virtual Staging
Our client requests are varied when it comes to virtual staging. Here's 10 typical uses of virtual staging:
1. empty developments - we virtual stage (inside and out)
2. empty homes - we virtually stage (inside and out)
3. probate properties - we virtually renovate, then virtually stage (inside and out)
4. enhancing dated homes - we virtually renovate, then virtually stage (inside and out)
5. part complete developments - we virtually renovate, then virtually stage (inside and out)
6. part complete refurbishments - we virtually renovate, then virtually stage (inside and out)
7. rental, service accommodation or hotels - we virtually stage (inside and out)
8. commercial spaces - we develop concepts of how these potential spaces can be used, even during Covid-19 eg. wedding venue, coffee shop
9. valuations - we develop CGI from architect drawings then virtually stage (inside and out)
10. accessories only - we will work with what you have already and add virtual accessories to bring your furniture pieces to life. We often do this on rental accommodation
We will share more options about the versality of virtual staging in a future blog - watch this space.
Virtual and Physical Staging Convergence
As a business, sort style and stage continually evolve our service to meet our clients needs.
In addition to our virtual staging service, we can complement the virtual staging with physical staging which uses matching or near matching physical furniture and accessories. We can offer these on a rental or purchase basis. This is ideal if you want to offer your tenants or your buyer a turn key solution.
To learn more about how we can help you with our staging services,
contact us on +44 7984 005 626