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Virtual design technology for marketing real estate listings

Before virtual staging and after virtual staging. Click to enlarge.

Using virtual staging in real estate

Although a common practice in commercial real estate, virtual staging to show the potential of a property or piece of land is less common in residential real estate as some question the ethics of presenting a property in any other way than its current state. It’s tricky, but if marketed properly and clearly marked as a rendering, virtual staging for interiors and exteriors can be extremely helpful. Principal Designer Gary Robertson told us, “We’ve developed a new technology that actually improves the positives, while eliminating the cons: Virtual Property Design (VPD), a specialized virtual technology that creates amazingly realistic photos of a property showing different design and architectural concepts in place.”

Not just for vacant listings

Their software is used for more than virtually staging a vacant home and is used to depict remodels or help clients envision what a lot would look like with a home or what a home would look like with a different facade, claiming the technology allows clients to “take a serious look – or second look – at a property.”

Buyers on a budget

Given the rise in short sales and foreclosures, this is a unique tool for agents specializing in working with buyers seeking discounts- now instead of just verbally describing the potential of a listing that is less than appealing in its current state, agents can actually show some options that could motivate a buyer to get off of the fence. Some personalities have better imaginations than others, and the first impression of an ugly home could be repaired with some simple tools like virtual staging technology.

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Tara Steele is the News Director at The American Genius, covering entrepreneur, real estate, technology news and everything in between. If you'd like to reach Tara with a question, comment, press release or hot news tip, simply click the link below.



  1. JBond

    August 29, 2011 at 10:04 am

    Wow, this is fascinating. I think this could be a valuable tool to those who are more visionary in their outlook and wanting to get their hands dirty.

  2. Jason fox

    August 29, 2011 at 12:40 pm

    This is just the thing that I was looking for on one of my projects. We are running a 203k class and we find propertues that have awesome potential, and would like to be able to give a visual of how it could look. I will checking this out, Thank You!

  3. Jonathan C

    August 29, 2011 at 5:13 pm

    I see how this would be useful, however, based on the images in the example, I'd say that this is "virtual remodeling" not "virtual staging"! Either way, I like it but I think it has to be very clearly labeled as a fictitious rendering and images of the actual property provided side by side.

  4. Randy Teves

    August 31, 2011 at 8:35 pm

    Quite interesting! The real estate industry is really getting more technology-driven. Hope that home buyers will really see the "potential" of this innovation in their home-buying plunge.

  5. Stephen

    September 4, 2011 at 10:59 am

    As Virtual Staging professionals, we would never condone using our pioneered technology to falsely portray a room or home as something that it isn't. We do however provide a very realistic and valuable service to those wishing to accent an empty or vacant space with furniture and accessories.

  6. Cliff Stevenson

    September 6, 2011 at 10:10 pm

    A colleague of mine in our office uses this type of service, and has a bound book of before and after shots for their listing presentation. When they are interviewing for listings that are going to be vacant, my understanding is that this service has helped them obtain numerous listings.

  7. KBell

    September 7, 2011 at 9:20 am

    I agree that this is not quite virtual staging as this is more of a CAD rendering of what the exterior of a home could look like. Virtual staging is simply a new technology that takes vacant photos of a home and ONLY places furnishings and decor into the photos to help buyers better understand the layout of a home and envision themselves living in the home. Its sole purpose was developed in order to help drive buyer traffic to a vacant home and get it sold! If you want to learn more about what true virtual staging is and how it works to sell vacant homes nationwide then you can visit for more info!

  8. Roger

    September 8, 2011 at 9:32 pm

    When I first saw the picture on this post I thought it was a joke. Are you kidding me? That's not even the same house! This is not virtual staging. You should really research what you write about before you publish it. I've used virtual staging a little over 7 times, and the company I've used ( doesn't modify the structure of the home. They will add furniture to an empty room which comes out amazing.

    If you are trying to sell a home and have someone change the picture so its a completely different home I dont see what the point of that is. Choose a reputable company that only does furniture and you'll see some amazing results like I have.

  9. Gary Robertson

    September 13, 2011 at 10:58 am

    A bit of a correction on this article. What we offer would not be considered Virtual Staging. That process – as stated in earlier comments – is adding images of furniture to existing photos to "stage" empty rooms. Our service, VPD (Virtual Property Design), creates a true to scale 3d model of the room or property and is a way to enable people to visualize what can be done to improve a property – a useful tool for both buyers and sellers (and contractors). It takes a process and technology that before was only used for very expensive architectural projects, and makes it affordable enough to be a powerful tool for any real estate transaction/project. On the example shown with this article, it was the potential buyer of the property who requested a design concept for the house they were considering. The VPD concept that was created is designed on the same footprint of the existing structure – including the porch which has been converted into living space. As with all VPDs, this concept is to scale based on the measurements we received.

  10. Julie Virtual

    August 12, 2012 at 1:31 pm

    Keep in mind that there are more than one type of virtual staging.  One uses CAD or digitally created images for furnishings while the other uses images taken of real furniture on HD.  The latter is far more realistic and creates a much warmer look and feel.  Take a look at for a better idea.

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