Follow Our Tweets: @mris_Real_News Like Us On Facebook MRIS® - a Bright MLS

Staging a Home: First Impressions Are Everything

August 27, 2013  |  by MRIS Guest

Welcome to Photo Week Day 2! Today’s post is written by Jason LaVanture, Vice-President and Founder of RTV, Inc.

I’m sure you have heard the saying, “first impressions are everything” but may have never thought too much of it. For those in the virtual tour business, this saying is definitely true when you are trying to market any piece of real estate property. When your customers see a property for the first time, they need to be “WOWED!” This is both true in person and within your online virtual tours. Making sure that your properties are presented in the best way possible, is crucial and can easily make or break a sale.

Here’s an example:

The inside of the home was dirty, furniture was poorly organized, and it looked like a cluttered mess. All of the “don’ts” are obvious in this comparison, but sometimes certain things get overlooked when setting up a home for a photo shoot.

Imagine if this were your listing. The photos are taken, and the tour is now uploaded and viewable to everyone you show. Someone visits your online virtual tour for this home that is amazing and has the potential to sell quickly to the right person, but your introduction photo and the rest were a complete mess. What is the visitor’s first reaction? To leave the tour and not look at the other photos because they are not presentable. You have now lost a potential buyer.

That was just an example and may not even apply to you, but it DOES happen and some tours can look bad just because of poorly taken photos. So what can you do to make sure that your home property is prepped and ready for photography?

Let’s go through some of the staging tips:

  • Remove personal items.
  • Focus on the main areas and rooms such as bathrooms, bedrooms, living room, dining room, kitchen, etc.
  • Remove evidence of pets.
  • Turn on all lights and create a warm atmosphere. Natural lighting is very important and shows up well in photos.
  • Remove personal photographs
  • Clean and declutter the focus areas.
  • Capture great shots of the exterior and surrounding areas. Focusing on nice landscaping is important and will give the house that extra “curb appeal”.

The whole goal is to have your property feel like home and to capture it in a positive light. Make sure your online visitors feel like they are actually stepping inside of the property so that they can feel the experience of a great 360 virtual tour. Your clients and everyone who views your virtual tours will be blown away. By following these tips and staying within your photography guidelines will help you create great virtual tours and have a more successful virtual tour business. Good luck and happy marketing!



  • Most buyers form an opinion about a home within the first 7-10 seconds of arriving.
  • Over 90% of buyers look at homes they’ve found on the Internet. It is critical that your home makes a strong first impression online. Staging or virtual home staging will help you do just that.
  • A staged home will sell, on average, 17% higher than a home that is not staged. (US Housing and Urban Development)
  • Sellers who spent $500 on staging recovered over 343% of the cost when they sold their home. (
  • It is estimated that only 10% of home buyers can visualize the potential of a home. That means 90% are not going to be able to look past dirt, clutter, and imperfections.
  • Staged homes spent 83% less time on the market than non-staged homes. (

Posted in Blog, Featured, Guest Posts, Marketing Tips, Photo Week 2013

Next Post → ← Previous Post

6 responses to “Staging a Home: First Impressions Are Everything”

  1. D Northup says:

    I agree first impressions are on the internet and if that doesn't appeal most people will not look any further.

  2. Michele says:

    Sellers who offer a de-cluttered and professionally staged property sell faster, and for more of their asking price has been my experience.

  3. Julie Halpin says:

    Absolutely! Staging and photography are the 2 most important marketing tools a realtor has. They 1 pull them in on the internet and 2 make them fall in love and bond with the pillows and lighting.. the big stuff ie. walls and ceilings get ignored until they are already emotionally committed. I own a company called "Staging Works" and do it alllll day!

  4. I sell real estate as well as stage and the one thing that i don't like is this new photography, where the picture appears to hav ebeen painted and then you go to view the property and it's very worn out and looks nothing like the picture.

  5. This is sooooo true. As the old saying goes,"It doesn't cost to stage a home, it pays." Every home that a seller has agreed to have staged or the seller has done a great job of preparing themselves has sold much more quickly and for a much higher price than the homes that are cluttered and disheveled

    Even if the seller can't keep it staged (kids or whatever. I've heard tons of excuses), at least the picture will get people in the front door.

  6. ev temizli?i says:

    two important issues at home and cleaning. reached when searching your website.

RSS Feed