Is virtual staging legal and what to keep in mind about it?

Can virtual staging be accused of misrepresentation? How to avoid legal issues in this sphere? Find out everything about virtual staging legality now.

The legality of virtual staging solutions: should you doubt it?

The legality of virtual staging solutions: should you doubt it

Every industry tries to keep up with trends and offer customers the best services. The real estate sphere isn't an exception. Earlier, it was a norm to come to the offices of popular brokerage companies, look through the properties offered by them, visit them personally, and make decision about their suitability. Currently, there's no need to leave the comfort of your home to look through the listings and even visit them virtually. 

No wonder real estate professionals have come to the conclusion that every listing should be enhanced to attract more attention. One of the ways to do that is virtual staging solutions applied to photographs. But is it legal to change real property photos? Let's find out more about virtual staging and why there are doubts about its legality.

 

A brief definition of virtual staging

A brief definition of virtual staging

A process of furniture and decor arrangement made on the photo of a property with the help of professional computer software is known as virtual or digital staging. It is a tool used in advertising and promoting listings of the predominantly vacant estates since it looks less appealing to potential buyers. In some cases, designers may replace existing furniture pieces with new ones and enhance a general impression of a home. These improved photos are more likely to be spotted online and speed up the property sale.

 

Why is it so popular in the real estate business?

Why is it so popular in the real estate business

One of the main reasons why virtual staging has received such great success in the real estate sphere is its possibility to make listings outstanding. Adorable photographs with stylish interiors are viewed more often. Furthermore, it's a great chance to show the room potential too. It's almost impossible to visualize how a staged room will look like on the basis of room measurements or photos of empty walls. However, virtually staged photos make it clear what pieces can be arranged there and in what way. Other reasons why virtual staging is often used in real estate look as follows:

  • It's a time-savvy and more affordable way of speeding up sales;
  • It allows decluttering and depersonalizing space too;
  • There's no need to attend traditional showings and keep social distancing;
  • Staged photos can be used for creating an immersive experience in virtual home tours;
  • Direct targeting of special customer groups;
  • Flexibility and adaptability.  

 

Is virtual staging legal?

Is virtual staging legal?

The main question that interests customers thinking of ordering virtual staging services is their legality. Not everyone considers it lawful to change real photographs and showcase newly created images in the listings. It's connected with possible property misrepresentation caused by this decision. Some people may take a photo added to the listing as a real one and believe that a home looks as follows too. However, it will happen only in one case - if you don't mark a virtually staged photo with a special label. The absence of this sign may be considered wishful thinking or even a desire to cheat potential buyers. In this case, virtual staging may go beyond legal frames and lose its legal character. 

At the same time, it won't take much effort to avoid any issues with the law when you order virtual staging solutions. How to do that? Consider the hints described in the next paragraph.

 

3 steps to make digital staging solutions ethical

The main task of every real estate agent who benefits from virtual staging solutions is to remain honest with potential buyers. It allows sticking to the legislation and prevent any troubles, questions, or doubts. 

If you want to be sure you aren't breaking the law or misleading anyone changing estate photographs digitally, consider the following methods and make use of them to protect yourself.

 

Every photo staged virtually must be marked

Every photo staged virtually must be marked

No matter where you use a digitally staged photo, on an MSL or real estate portal, it should have a label "Virtually staged". Viewers should have a clear understanding that this image isn't a true-to-life photo and was changed prior to being posted. In most cases, this sign is applied by the company that performs an order. However, if you receive a final product without a mark, it is important to ask for revision.

 

Show both a staged and non-staged photo

Show both a staged and non-staged photo

 

Show both a staged and non-staged photo

Experts advise including a "before" and "after" photo in the listing to prevent viewers from feeling deceived. There are examples when a staged image was laid in the foreground of the empty room photograph. It's a great way to show the room potential and prevent misunderstandings. 

 

Tell about virtual staging solutions in the listing description

Show both a staged and non-staged photo

Sometimes it isn't enough to provide a watermark in the image. Legal advisers also suggest mentioning the use of digital staging solutions in the property description. Naturally, you should explain why they were included: for example, to showcase a property potential or its intended use.

  

Customer impressions about virtual staging 

Customer impression

Virtual staging has reached amazing popularity with both home buyers and sellers. Real estate professionals who deal with vacant and luxury properties take advantage of this service on a regular basis since it allows estates to spend less time in the market and costs not much. The number of companies that began to offer this solution to brokers and realtors has tripled for several recent years, while the creativity of designers seems to have no limits. 

Do buyers consider virtual staging misleading? The percentage of people who do is quite small. Vice versa, buyers don't waste time on showings of properties that don't meet their requirements and get amazing ideas of how to arrange furniture in the properties they plan to buy. There are even situations when virtual staging led to competition between buyers and increased the original price of the property.

Written by
Andrew Zlobin
CEO/Founder of spotlessagency.com

Related entries

When it comes to 3D modeling, virtual staging, and architectural rendering, we know that you want the details of how it works and how it can benefit you and your business. These recommended articles will give you the inside track on everything we do, and we’re sure you’ll find them to be as entertaining as they are informative.

image

Virtual Staging

How To Save Money With Virtual Staging?

The greatest drawback of staging type is huge sums of money spent both on designer services and furnishing. The second way to improve your listings by staging is the virtual one. Its main benefits are showing the potential of the empty property, the attraction of more viewers, and as a result, faster sale of this property. However, virtual staging has another huge advantage for both property owners and realtors: it saves money. How can it happen? There are several ways to get all the benefits provided by virtual staging and spent a little. The possibilities of virtual staging are endless. You may either add a couple of items or declutter and redecorate the whole room. All this is available for comparably little money.

Read article Read article
image

Virtual Staging

5 Rough Mistakes Of Outdoor Space Staging

Private cottages with much outdoor space are very popular in the real estate market, but some of them may stay there for many years and the reason for that is not a price. Often, lack of designer skills or the absence of desire to keep order by the home discourage the potential buyers. Every person wishes to buy a perfect house so any staging mistakes, outdoor ones, in particular, are a huge drawback. It’s important that you think of any imperfection, even small things you wouldn’t think would put anyone off. For example, if you have any missing or chipped tiles on your roof, it can make the potential buyer think there are further issues with the house. Getting Ace Roofing to replace these faults can be the difference between a sale or not. Let’s see what outdoor space staging mistakes should be avoided for a home to be a top viewed ad in the listings.

Read article Read article
image

Virtual Staging

Things You Should Know About Virtual Staging

Virtual staging has become a reasonable solution for everyone who deals with the interior design, staging vacant homes or dealing with furniture and decor. Today there is no need to hire a photographer and take photos of an empty home, buy expensive furniture advised by a designer in his services, add unappealing listings etc. All these and many other problems can be solved using virtual staging services. It is rather cost-effective and offers flexibility as an image can be changed multiple times if you need. It is possible to combine different types of furniture, try several interiors in one room or help the potential buyers see the potential of the empty property. However, there are three more things you should know about virtual staging.

Read article Read article
image

Virtual Staging

Buying A House Without A Realtor: Pros And Cons

Everyone who sells or buys property always thinks about a necessity of hiring a real estate agent. Portrayed in many films negatively they seem to do nothing and get huge money for that. However, people who have experience of either buying or selling a home would more likely agree that a realtor has played an important role in that experience. So, if you are not ready to pay a sizable commission from your pocket or wish to try your own hand in real estate business, evaluate the benefits and drawbacks of buying a house without a realtor and only then make your final choice. If you are looking to buy a house you will need to find a good mortgage to help towards buying it.

Read article Read article
image

Virtual Staging

How To Find Quality And Affordable Interior Design Providers?

A lot of people choose to carry out home improvements themselves, and if you’re in Canada you should check out the Mississauga Benjamin Moore store to see a range of wallpaper designs that you could install yourself. Today it is more popular to order interior design services if you wish to change a look of your home. Comfort and pleasant atmosphere have become decisive factors in every interior and only a professional can achieve this goal. Thankfully, reputable interior design firms such as VISO pride themselves on their ability to create a beautiful haven through the art of interior design that is more than satisfactory for their clients. However, it turned out that it is a real problem to find a qualified, talented and affordable interior designer or company. There is an overwhelming number of offers in the modern design market but it is not safe to entrust anybody you see for the first time with this responsible task. You may not only waste your money but also be absolutely disappointed with the workflow and result. To avoid such negative consequences it is important to put effort and devote time to finding an experienced interior design provider and consider the following tips to make the right choice.

Read article Read article
image

Virtual Staging

Top Home Staging Books: List By Spotless Agency

There are quite a few ways you can sell your home. You could do it all independently, you could use a real estate agent or maybe you’re in a rush and need to use we buy houses Sacramento. Which ever way you’re selling your home, home staging can be a big part of getting a good price for your house. Home staging ideas can be found in different sources and books are among them too. Some suggest that having the right garage floor coatings can make or break the sale for perspective buyers. Keep that in mind when staging your garage, assuming you have one. Today it is very popular to try your hand at writing and many interior designers do not lose this chance as well. They compose books on different topics including home staging, so here is a list of the best home staging books to read this year. If you’re looking for ways to protect your home’s value, take a look at home warranty reviews.

Read article Read article
image

Virtual Staging

10 Best Home Design Blogs To Subscribe And Learn From

The design is a creative art as well as science so you should always be in search of new ideas and knowledge, for example, they might decide that the newest thing will be how about some matching floor and ceiling lights? That could be the latest in ideas, however, times might be changing soon enough. If a designer does not keep up with modern trends, his projects get lost in the abundance of others and become outdated. That is why every designer should have time for self-improvement and be aware of the innovations and novelties of the industry. If you are thinking about redesigning your home, but are unsure about what to get, or how to go about it. Then the one thing that you could do would be to take a look at something like this bistro furniture, or you could take a look at these window treatments, however, there are loads of things that you can do and take a look at when it comes to redesigning your home, such as revamping your windows inside and out with shutters from home design companies such as Shuttercraft. The best way to follow modern trends is to look for inspiring ideas among professionals. Many famous designers share their vision in popular interior design blogs, so here are top 10 best home design blogs to read.

Read article Read article
image

Virtual Staging

Perspectives Of 3D Real Estate Tours

Virtual 3D tours have struck the real estate market quite recently. They have been used for about 3 years only and firstly were created only for luxury property to impress the potential and wealthy buyers. I can imagine Eddie Yan homes for sale will probably take advantage of this fantastic technology at some point. It is not a secret that rich people can afford going to different corners of the world to see the property they wish to buy, but the appearance of 3D virtual tours has simplified this procedure as you can see a home on sale without leaving your home, real estate agency office or country. Moreover, the first 3D tours required new technological devices and software and were rather expensive so ordinary sellers could not afford it. However, when real estate agents have appreciated the benefits 3D tours bring, a demand for this service was growing and more and more companies began to offer similar services. That allowed to make the price lower and spread the service to the property with the average cost. It would be interesting to see a real estate tour for different places. Nowadays, there are many arguments on the point if 3D tours can be called the future of the real estate market as there are supporting evidence of both its pros and cons, but it seems that realtors are not ready to refuse from showing homes on distance due to a number of unsurpassed benefits tours provide.

Read article Read article
image

Virtual Staging

How Much Should I Spend On Virtual Home Staging?

Due to the popularity of virtual staging services many companies wished to take their place in this direction, however, there are only several professional companies that major entirely on VR and guarantee high-quality solutions from experts.

Read article Read article
image

Virtual Staging

Why Do Some Apartments Never Find Their Buyers?

Real Estate business has many underwater stones. Much of the important information about the property on sale is kept secret from the potential buyers. In addition, there are some reasons for the property to remain in the market for months, years and the owners do not ever get profit from selling them. Though it may seem that every product has its buyer, sometimes the requirements of the sellers are so exaggerated that a property is only getting older and never bought by anyone, houses for sale in mississauga doesn’t have this issue though. Let’s analyze why buyers categorically refuse from buying property and what astonished them most of all.

Read article Read article

If you have any questions we will happy hearing from you

Address

610 West Broadway, Suite 201

Jackson WY, 83001