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Virtual Staging Interview – Washington Capital Partners

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[Music]well hey thanks Brian I I reallyappreciate you you coming out here I'mactually really excited here about youknow what your company does as far asthe virtual staging industry so let'sjust jump right into it so tell me alittle bit more about your company andreally how you got all started I started23 24 years ago it was a wedding andportrait photographer started down atVirginia Beach and about 10 years ago westarted specializing in architecture andreal estate and have moved away reallyfrom the wedding and portrait and now 95percent of our work is all architecturaland real estate photography yeah that'sgreatso actually let's let's dive a littlebit more into the business itself I'mcurious who is your typical client youknow who are you catering to most of ourwork is for Realtors pride say and forSale By Owner 70 80 percent is realestate specific Realtors brokers another20 percent 15 20 % real estate investorsand then we also have a small percentageof designers that we work with as wellyeah so so how many homes are youtypically serving in any given monthtypically during our busy season 30 to70 listings a month mm-hmm and andwhat's the busiest time of the year foryou spring and summer markets are alwayshuge the fall market is also very busyand interestingly we used to fromThanksgiving to February March you knowtypically stuff wasn't listing stuffwasn't the properties weren't sellingbut the past two three years with thisamazing real estate market we haven'thad an off season just as an examplelast year the week of Christmas we did15 listings the week of Christmas Wownever do you typically do shoot in thisin the off season that many propertiesthis year we I think we did seven oreight the week of Christmas a total of15 and December yeah so this market isjust great yeah that's excellentso Tomiolittle bit more about the process rightfrom the client first reaching out toyou all the way until you know you'retaking the photos off the MLS tell me alittle bit more about that I have aclient portal on my website whereRealtors designers investors they canclick right on itand sign them set up an account with usand then they can order everythingdirectly through the website or they cancall us on schedule and then we have aprofessional draftsman a certifieddraftsman a videographer licensed dronepilot I'm the main photographer I do allthe the photography during the busyseason that do have assistants that willhelp out but then we get all thatschedule shooted for the clientdepending on what their needs obviouslya builder a real estate investor hasdifferent needs than a real estate agentas far as the the video or thephotography and different needs fordesigners you know versus Realtors orinvestors so we shoot specifically whatthe client needs what their end goalsare and then we send it out all of ourimages are professionally edited we havea photo editor that does all our editingour video video edits for us typicallywe promise 48 hours delivery the 90% ofour work is 24 hours or less so if Isend it out if I shoot it listing thisafternoon send it out this evening Ihave it in my office in tomorrow morningdeliver it to the to the agent theyloaded on the MLS or we can load it forthem if they we have some agents thatreally are more hands-off and want us todo all that so we'll we'll take care ofthat form and then once it sells we moveon to the next project yeah absolutelyum so as I'm sure you know in thisbusiness you know everyone is reallycost savvy so tell me a little bit moreabout the cost of virtual staging andwhy do realtors and investorneed to know who you are typically ajust a standard three to six nine roomvirtual staging will run you three does$700 typical staging can be two to threethousand dollars and there's really youknow if it if it sits for six monthsthen your costs increase every monthwith the virtual staging you just havethat one upfront cost and you know youcan budget for it because you know it'sgonna be X amount of dollars yeah andthe virtual staging one of I think thebiggest benefits is it allows thepotential client buy or customer tostart having the emotional attachment tothe property and we all know that salesbig high dollar sales particularly realestate it starts with an emotionalinvestment once the client the buyer isemotionally invested then you know halfthe work is done so the virtual stagingshows a lot better than just an emptybox it shows the property in its bestlight you the buyer can really start topicture their lifestyle if that homemeets their lifestyle and then once theyarrive at the property obviously there'sno furniture there so they're notdistracted they can start picturingtheir furniture in the space or ifthey're going to hire a designer theycan start picturing what the design isgoing to look like in that space theempty space versus what it looks likebest online stage yeah actually you youactually gonna on a point on my nextquestion um you know which is when youwhen a buyer is actually looking at thepictures on the MLS and they see youknow it's beautifully staged whethervirtual or real and then they actuallygo to the property and see that it's aempty shell you know do you feel asthough that that would take value awayfrom the property I don't believe so anda lot of the Realtors that I work withwe deliver both copies the virtualstaged versus you know the empty roomand typically they'll post both onlineso that you know people potential buyerswhen they arrive at the property youthey're not blindsided where thefurniture go and what I I have aparticular realtor that will have usprint sixteen by twenty images and putthem on an easel in the room that werevirtually staged so that once they'veseen them online they arrive at theproperty they they can picture theirfurniture but if they want a refresherof what it looked like online they havethat sixteen by twenty print in a mat inthe room itself and I think it's a greatpresentationyou really get the best of both worldsyou can see it stays and you can alsopicture your furniture or your design inthat particular space yeah and actuallyI've seen that a couple of Realtors ofthem especially with newer homes they'llhave like the renderings you know of theneighborhood and what the property couldlook like with the furniture so that'sgreat so then what's what's thedirection that virtual staging is takingum and and what what issues do you seearising because of it if any I mean myour virtual staging has grownexponentially over the pasttwo-and-a-half years we were one of thefirst ones to offered in this area andthe more people that that learn about itthe more Realtors investors that learnabout itwe just we keep getting repeat clientsfrom it one of the the biggest obstaclesI would say and this is just recently Iread an article about misrepresentationyou know yeah client arrives at theproperty they're expecting a fullystaged property and it's an empty houseright typically I don't really believethat's a valid concern because thefurniture generally doesn't convey withreal estate anyways you're showing thehouse in its best light it's and if itwas a traditional staging you know thatfurniture isn't gonna convey with thesale of the house yeah and we're verycareful when we stage we don't changevirtually staged we don't change anyphysical elements of the property it'sall furniture the paint colors the samewe're notchanging the carpet now we do offer thatyeah investors if they want to see maybewhat the walls look like withoutwallpaper a different paint color on thewall open up one of the walls at thedoor we can do all that obviously that'sa little more expensive because it's alittle more involvement of time but it'sall a remodel of a kitchen if you wantif they wanted to show a client what theremodel would look like all that'spossible yeah that's excellentwell this was thought this was all greatbright having someone find you theeasiest way is our website WWN over realestate photo comm yeah you can go thereand it's set up to be very easy to uselike I mentioned earlier the clientportal Realtors or investors can ittakes maybe two minutes to set a profileup and then you can order all yourpackages you can send us a question onthere you can order the video all ourmarketing products everything is onthere yeah and then if they have aquestion they can always reach me wehave a an office in Virginia Beach andan office up here 90% of my work is uphere so we grew up here 90% of the timeyeah and I call direct or through ourwebsite yeah that's great um actually Iwant to go ahead and run through yourwebsite now you know that way can kindof start showing people what you have tooffer so as you can see here we have theNorthern Virginia real estatephotography website so kind of kind ofrun through us you know some of some ofthe important things that you want us totake a look at so just go ahead andalright the menu bar at the top if youclick on the pricing and informationobviously there's a drop-down menu whereyou can click on each of the differentphotography packages we offer but thatthat page has all the packages so thatyou can the agents can decide whichpackage best suits their needs and theycan click on moreinformation per package or the drop-downmenu at the top they can pull up moreinformation I just wanted to highlightthat we do have a satisfaction guaranteeyeah which we we pride ourselves oncustomer service as well as being a topnotch photography and the video mediacompany yeah that's excellent I've neverheard of anyone offering such suchguarantee and if if the realtor investordesigner isn't happy with with theimages is send them back to us and youknow we we would fund their moneycompletely perfect our job isn't doneuntil they're 100% satisfied and I knowyou know a lot of people say that butthat's one of our core beliefs that'sthat's we really make that happen foreveryone yeah excellentwe also our portfolio we have at the topa couple recent shoots that we've doneall this past year and then below thatwe also integrated our Instagram feed inthere which is our most up-to-dateportfolio you can see recent shots we'vedone there's the the best of house wewon that for customer service in 2017they awarded in 2018 so we're very proudof that because like I said we do prideourselves on customer service and theInstagram feed is all like I said ourmost recent shots you can see a lot ofthe virtual staging examples yeah andthey're all tagged virtual stagingbecause a lot of times if it's donecorrectly it's it's hard to tell what'sbeen staged or what's not my photoeditor does a really good job of puttingin the little details as far as likeshadows or reflections and mirrors withvirtual staging it's really the detailsthat sell it yeah and all I see in someof these these shots the only way Iwould know it's not actual staging it'sbecause of all the little details in thefurniture you know for example this thisbathroom I mean they went as far as toput all the soaps you know playI don't think a regular stager would dothat realistically um but I mean the thepictures look absolutely fantastic andthen our client portal like I mentionedearlier that's where you can sign up orsome people prefer to call direct youknow we will also sign you up get youall set up on the phone but the easiestway to to get you scheduled and directlyon our shoot calendar is through theclient portal and it's very easy to usepretty self-explanatorybecause this is great this is definitelysomething that our clients need to needto look into as a cost alternative totraditional staging this is great wellanyways hey Brian it was a it was apleasure I appreciate you coming out youknow if you're interested in virtualstaging definitely go check out thewebsite thanks for joining us[Music][Music]

Virtual Staging interview with Washington Capital Partners, spring 2018.

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