By Pieter Aarts
The advantage home staging can have on the sale of a property is something real estate industry professionals have been aware of for some time, allowing prospective buyers to visualize a space and therefore, potentially living there.
According to a recent report conducted by real estate brokerage Redfin, vacant homes nationwide sell for an average of $11,306 less and spend six more days on the market than comparable occupied homes. When looking nationally, Omaha, NE and Greenville, South Carolina, held the biggest price gaps – with vacant homes selling for an average of 7.2% less.
“Although vacant homes are easy for buyers to tour at their convenience, the fact that the sellers have already moved on is often a signal to buyers that they can take their time making an offer,” said Redfin Chief Economist Daryl Fairweather, in the recent report. “It’s also likely that sellers who are in a comfortable enough financial situation to own a property that’s sitting empty aren’t as motivated to get the highest possible price for their home as sellers who need the cash from their first home in order to buy the next one.”
The Value of Staging
Staging vacant homes clearly aid home sales, with 83% of real estate agents stating that it can make it easier for potential buyers to visualize a space. However, doing so with physical furniture can be expensive, time-consuming, and cumbersome – often costing thousands of dollars, and can delay the listing weeks while the agent waits for the furnishings to be delivered. Due to advancements in mobile augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR), technology now allows agents to showcase “virtually staged” properties, which give potential homebuyers the ability to view multiple aesthetic stylings and the invaluable opportunity to visualize what the vacant home can look like at its full potential. The cost is a fraction of physical staging, and leveraging robust libraries of furniture and furnishings, the quick turnaround time meets the fast-paced demand mandated by the real estate industry.
So how does this work? RoOomy has developed a leading virtual staging, CGI and 3-D modeling platform that enables real estate professionals to quickly and easily transform static 2-D imagery of home interiors into ultra-realistic 3-D renderings that are completely furnished and decorated with real, shoppable home furnishings from top retailers that homebuyers know and love.
Growing Demand for AR and VR in Real Estate
Today’s homebuyers are increasingly demanding immersive services and mobile AR and VR tools that allow them to effectively evaluate a property, often times without needing to physically set foot in the home. Consider this: In a 2018 survey, more than seven out of 10 (71%) respondents toured or viewed images online of the homes that they were most interested in before walking through the properties. And this number is only expected to grow as AR and VR tools become a necessity.
Virtual staging allows vacant properties to be viewed in their best light, providing flexibility to present potential buyers with an array of options to satisfy diverse needs. For example, a couple with no children moving into a home requires different things of the vacant space than a couple with children, in terms of layout, furniture and décor. In this regard, virtual staging can be utilized to view a home’s true potential. With the ability to answer questions such as “where should the couch go?” and “what size bed can the bedroom permit without making the room feel cramped?” in an illustrative way, homebuyers can make more accurate and informed decisions by visualizing a customized, furnished space.
What’s more, homebuyers can purchase the very products they use to customize spaces during the home search, which further emphasizes that these visualization technologies are not only improving the house hunting process, but also the furnishing process to ensure a seamless customer journey. Being rapidly adopted by many nationwide real estate companies, virtual staging is proving to be an integral part of the 21st century home buying process.