4 Tips to Boost Your Home's Screen Appeal
Since the start of the global coronavirus pandemic, every industry has shifted towards more digital and remote work platforms. The real estate industry has been no different. Despite widespread concerns, innovation has reigned supreme and people have continued to buy, sell, and search for homes throughout the entire pandemic. The ongoing dynamism of the real estate industry has relied heavily upon remote home viewings.
To keep potential home buyers and sellers safe, secure, and socially distanced during the pandemic, home viewings have gone digital. And the trend has continued even now that the in-person home viewings are beginning to return.
So beyond the traditional concerns of boosting your home’s curb appeal for in-person viewings, there are new aspects of the home viewing process to consider. Let’s take a look at 4 tips to boost your home’s “screen appeal” below.
1. Clean and Clear Your Space
This first tip is perhaps the most important to follow for both in-person and digital home viewings: clean, clear, and thoroughly declutter your space before a home viewing! The number one thing that can turn a potential homebuyer off of placing an offer on your otherwise beautiful home is seeing it laden with clutter. Checking out a home that appears to be messy and chock full of someone else’s stuff (yours!) can deter even the most interested party.
Why? It paints a picture of your home as a messy and unorganized place, which can shine a negative light on both the space itself and you as the home seller. The association that prospective home buyers form in their minds as they walk through your home can have a lasting effect on how they perceive and remember your home later as they are reviewing their options. And the impression formed from a virtual “walk through” has the same effect.
Clutter can have a particularly negative effect on digital viewings because it further detracts from the image of the space. Without being able to look around the home in person, it is vital that you give viewers a sense of the space as light, bright, and open, with no visual clutter or distractions on view in the digital image. That will give home buyers the best sense of what your space looks like, even from afar.
2. Check Your Tech Specs
You may be exhibiting your home with a remote viewing that utilizes video walkthroughs, AR or VR immersive technology, or simply photographs presented in a slideshow-style presentation. Regardless of which format you use, you will want to make sure that the media you are presenting works well and looks great. Once you have uploaded your photos, videos, or other media to the platform of your choice, do a test run! Musicians always test out their mics and speakers before they perform. You should do the same before your remote home viewing.
Ensure that your image and video quality is adjusted correctly for all formats. Since remote viewings are accessible from anywhere, your prospective home buyers will likely be checking out your property from their tablets, laptops, and even their smartphones. Run several tech tests before your public launch.
That way, you can make sure all your home-related media content is presented with the right image resolution and download speeds for every viewing format. If not, you can adjust images and videos so that they are compatible with smartphone screens and larger screen formats. Enlist a friend or family member to be your external test audience; they can provide feedback about whether your images and videos load properly.
3. Light The Way
Like a theater production, movie, or TV show, a remote home viewing is designed to present a certain image to viewers. So you will want to take your lighting into consideration. Lighting can make the difference between an attractive, appealing home and a dark, dingy cave. As you run your tech specs, play with different lighting arrangements. Let in as much natural light as possible to illuminate your home’s best spaces with a natural glow. And turn on all the lamps and spotlights as well.
Digital viewings tend to run darker than you might expect, so don’t be afraid to let the light shine bright. Just make sure to test the images before you publish them; you want to strike the right balance between illuminated and washed out.
If your home has too many bright blueish-white lightbulbs, consider replacing them with warmer orange-hued bulbs to create a cozy glow. You don’t want your home to appear sterile and cold, like an office building, but you certainly don’t want to skew too far in the other direction either. Strike the right balance between bright and inviting by playing with various lighting arrangements.
4. Set the Scene
As you bring digital visitors through your home, make sure to give them a thorough and evenly paced view of each area of the home. A remote viewing is, in part, an opportunity to spark the imagination of your home viewers. You will want them to be able to imagine how their lives would fit into your space. So arrange each room with carefully curated furniture, minimal objects, and plenty of emphasis on that room’s best features.
You can share with your digital audience the best features the home has to offer. Describe each special feature and amenity in your home within the context of a story; the more compelling the narrative, the more your visitors may be able to picture themselves feeling at home in your home. If your home has a cozy reading nook, for example, describe how future residents can curl up and listen to the rain while they read their favorite book. Or set up one of the rooms as a home office, so viewers can picture how easily they could work from home in your home.
Share The Home You Love
For any home viewing, digital or in person, remember that the audience you are sharing the home with are people who will likely share your concerns and needs when searching for a home. What made you fall in love with your home in the first place?
Highlight those details during your remote tour. Boost your home’s screen appeal for prospective homebuyers by emphasizing the home’s best qualities, showing them in their best light, and creating a clean, clear, welcoming atmosphere for viewers to visit, even online.