Selling the dream is what being a real estate agent is all about.
Photos of gorgeous houses in neutral tones are plentiful on the real estate websites. Family photos are kept to a minimum, so buyers can imagine their own families in situ. It’s the emotions and the feelings of warmth that gets many a buyer across the line.
Sometimes, though, the owners have moved on leaving an empty home, and don’t want to, or can’t, go to the expense of dressing one with furniture for sale.
Agents are now resorting to computer illusions to keep the dream alive, and companies are springing up that specialise in virtually furnishing a home through Photoshop and other software applications.
“I don’t like empty houses. It makes me feel like the last people have left on bad terms. It’s not homely or friendly,” says potential purchaser Monique Batterhan of Kurrajong.
“Seeing it with furniture helps me visualise what to do with the space and work out if it will suit my lifestyle.”
Dining tables, sofas, TVs, and even paintings and plants are being added to photographs of empty rooms for between $50 and $100 per image, which is considerably cheaper than employing a stylist and hiring furniture at several thousand dollars.
Large agents such as LJ Hooker and McGrath are regularly utilising virtually furnished images, with many other agencies also taking advantage of such technology, according to General Manager of Top Snap, Helen Clarke: “We are seeing increasing demand for our virtually furnished images. Not only does virtual furniture help present a vacant property in an attractive and appealing way, it also gives buyers a feel for how they could furnish the property themselves.