Realtors staging houses using virtual reality technology

Steve Lubetkin

For years, real estate agents have known that buyers respond more favorably to a property that has furniture and other decorations that simulate the feeling of a “lived-in” home, including picnic tables in the backyard. “Staging” a home to make it look this way has been an expensive proposition. Typically, the agent must pay for the setup, and of course, that cuts into profits.

Now, a Rosemont, IL-based production company called VHT Studios ( is offering brokers and other businesses the ability to stage a house using virtual reality tools.

VHT sends its photographers to a property to make professional images of the space, and then enhances the images with its Virtual Staging product, decorating vacant spaces in any style required, at a fraction of the cost. VHT also offers what it calls “Virtual Declutter,” removing clutter and “depersonalizing” living spaces; “Virtual Paint,” changing the appearance of any flat surface in a room; and “Virtual Redecorate,” transforming rooms with wide-ranging design styles and furnishings that it says are most likely to attract buyers.

“You can’t sell a home unless buyers come and see the home, but they won’t come see it unless they see beautiful photographs that showcase the listing’s potential,” said Michael LaFido, broker associate, Conlon/Christie’s International Real Estate. “Virtual Staging is a great and much more affordable way to attract buyers’ attention by presenting how a home could look post-sale, whether it’s by neutralizing wall coverings, redecorating, removing expensive artwork or just getting rid of unsightly stuff.”

For vacant listings, Virtual Staging eliminates the need for Realtors to spend thousands of dollars on traditional staging items such as draperies, furniture, art and accessories. Virtual Staging can also transform a listing by replacing mismatched, dated, worn or overly furnished rooms with alternative, classic, modern, or contemporary furnishing choices, the company says.

“By using virtually staged photographs, I have a much better shot at selling the home. Otherwise, my listing may be ignored because buyers were turned off by the rooms or just not excited about the furnishings,” said LaFido.

Virtual Paint allows virtual color changes to accent walls, floors, and other finishes, to better help homebuyers imagine how a space might look after the sale, with the help of their own paintbrush or contractor.

“We know real estate professionals want their listings to make a great first impression and our Virtual Staging Suite gives them greater control to wow potential buyers,” said Brian Balduf, CEO and co-founder, VHT Studios, in a recent press release.

To see before and after images showing how Virtual Staging can improve the appearance of a property for an online sales gallery, go to

Have questions about technology or software? Email me at and follow me on Twitter @PodcastSteve. s

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