Virtual Staging Provider vs Virtual Staging Software

By Devon Higgins

Should you hire a professional virtual staging company or use virtual staging software?

The benefits of virtual staging for real estate agents is undeniable. To be able to present a room that is beautifully furnished, well-lit and decorated to match the tastes of the buyer is a very persuasive sales tool. Not only are buyers more willing to commit to a visit when they see a furnished room, but according to an article from design blog DesignBlendz shows buyers are willing to pay higher prices once they get a sense of how the room will look when they move in.that they are also willing to pay more for a property that they can quickly move into.

Virtual staging removes the headache of having to stage the home yourself which involves renting furniture and decor, transporting it to the house, setting everything up, taking photographs, having an open house, and paying a weekly fee in order to keep the property furnished until it sells. Or, hire a home staging company to do this for you and it might end up costing twice as much… As you can imagine, the costs can add up quickly.

Using virtual staging software to achieve the same effect at a fraction of the cost makes good business sense. But you do have an important choice to make: Whether to do it yourself using virtual staging software (or virtual staging app) or whether to work with one of the many reputable virtual staging companies out there.

Let’s take a look at some pros and cons of each approach.

The Benefits of Virtual Staging Companies

Compare that scenario with what you experience when working with a virtual staging company. You have access to a large library of 3D virtual furniture, CAD software experts and photo retouching professionals. You get to choose the kind of look & feel for the space, collaborate with the team around specific pieces that you want to add, and take the time to make something that looks realistic and livable.

PhotoUp virtual staging offers free quality checks before delivery and free revisions to the work if you’re not happy with the result. We also guarantee a turnaround time of 24-48 hours for every virtually staged image. Our goal is not just to provide realistic virtual staging but to also make it look as realistic and aesthetically pleasing as possible.

Our professional interior designers keep up to date with the latest trends in home decor and produce beautiful, crated pieces for our Virtual Staging catalog. Our in-house virtual staging team designs and models all our own 3D furniture models, ensuring you have unique, modern and high-quality furniture placed in your vacant home photos.

Take a look at some examples of the beautiful work that our team has produced over the years.

The downside of working with a professional team is that it is not an instant process. If you’ve got only 30 minutes to get your virtual staging image done, then using a virtual staging app or software is probably the better way to go.

You typically pay for what you get, and PhotoUp virtual staging is no different. Our virtual staging cost slightly more than your average virtual staging software. We average $25 per image for standard staging, which includes up to 7 pieces of furniture and 1 room per frame.

Click here for more details on the cost of virtual staging.

The Benefits of Virtual Staging Software

This approach can work for you if you’re in a real time crunch and need to get something together quickly for a prospective buyer. All you need is a professional real estate photo and you can use any number of virtual staging softwares or virtual staging apps out there to drag and drop pieces of furniture into the room to give it a look that the buyer might appreciate.

It’s a good option to have when you need to move fast, and the virtual staging software providers generally offer a pay-as-you go system of credits that you buy up front and then work through, depending on how many images you need to stage.

The Issues with Virtual Staging Software

There are a number of drawbacks to using virtual staging software:

  • You’re on your own. Virtual staging software can be tricky to use. Fitting furniture into the perfect spot, sizing furniture correctly so it doesn’t look too big/small in a space, not to mention making sure your final virtually staged photo actually looks realistic. There’s not a lot of room for error when you’re using a software-as-a-service (SAAS) solution for your virtual staging needs.
  • Software can crash. The software almost never works as smoothly as you imagine it will. It’s fairly common to find yourself settling for a finished photo that you’re not entirely happy with. Getting the lighting in the room right, creating realistic shadows from the furniture and getting it all in proportion are harder to achieve than you imagine. There’s a reason that interior designers and photo editors are sought after professionals – it’s hard to do – so unless you’ve got a great design eye, well…the results can be a bit hit-or-miss.
  • Doesn’t look realistic. Virtual staging looks best when it’s hard to tell that the furniture in the room is, well… virtual. Go figure! The process of making virtual furniture look realistic takes a great deal of time and skill that can not be implemented with simple virtual staging software or a free virtual staging app.


So if you’re ready to add virtual staging to your list of services and build your portfolio, then it’s certainly worth using professionals to make your virtual staging look as realistic as possible.

Start a trial account with PhotoUp today for a professional, stylish new look to your portfolio.


Devon came to PhotoUp with a background in digital marketing and communications. With a BA in Marketing from Michigan State University and previous experience working with both big business and non-profits, Devon brings a well-rounded perspective to the team. Outside of PhotoUp, you can find Devon coaching and playing soccer, socializing in downtown Grand Rapids, or going on adventures throughout the great state of Michigan.

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