We get a lot of questions about home staging. It’s something that’s become part of our vernacular as Realtors® in the past decade or two, and a lot of Sellers are confused by what it means.

Some people assume home staging is renting fancy furniture to make the home look like a model home. But technically, staging is everything you do to present your home in the best possible way for a quick and successful sale. It can encompass everything from minor repairs to a kitchen facelift to a full bathroom renovation. But it can also be as simple as de-cluttering, de-personalizing (removing family photos and knick-knacks), putting a fresh coat of paint on the walls, cleaning up the yard, or replacing door knobs and bathroom fixtures.

The Right Furniture — Placed Well — Can Help Home Buyers Envision the Scale and Possibilities for a Room

Staging can also involve re-arranging existing furniture to open up a space or make it look bigger…or it might mean working on lighting to give a home a brighter, cheerier look. After all, you want the professional photos of your home to really WOW potential Buyers.

We can almost always work with clients’ existing furniture, but sometimes a situation arises in which a client has already moved out and we’re left with a vacant home, as with the example above. While it’s totally fine to show a vacant home, it doesn’t allow people to see a home’s potential. Ideally, you want to give Buyers a feel for the scale of a room — and more importantly, you want them to picture themselves living in your beautiful home. One option for vacant homes is to hire a stager to bring in furniture. But if that doesn’t appeal to you (or your budget), we can do “virtual staging.” Photos are taken, and a virtual stager works some magic with online software to make your home appear “staged” with furniture for photos in the MLS.

Look at the Difference Virtual Staging Can Make

For example, the photo above is a recent client’s empty upstairs “Loft” area BEFORE we had it virtually staged. Below is how it looked AFTER virtually staging it. Of course, we make it clear to Agents and Buyers looking at photos in the MLS that rooms are virtually staged (and many times we show photos of the rooms empty as well). We need to be transparent in that regard, and obviously when they go see the home in person, they’ll see that it’s empty. But virtual staging is a low-cost way to help Buyers envision how to best utilize the space. Because home offices are one of the most highly sought-after features of a home right now, we staged this Loft with a desk to suggest a way to to create a cozy workspace even though the home doesn’t technically have a “home office.” Home gyms are a huge selling point right now, too, and virtual staging can allow you to showcase an area of the basement that you might carve out for fitness equipment.

If you have any questions about Virtual Staging — or other ways to portray your home in the best light for a future sale — let us know. We can provide a complimentary consultation — either in person or via FaceTime.