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Photography by Cody Guilfoyle

Buying a home requires a good deal of imagination—the ability to look at four blank walls and see your dream bedroom or view a somewhat outdated kitchen and consider all the small renos you can do to give it new life. And when buyers put a little extra effort into making their homes as presentable as possible, that makes it even easier for potential buyers to imagine themselves in the space. It should come as no surprise, then, that homeowners who invest in staging sell their properties 88 percent faster, and for 20 percent more than nonstaged homes, according to Realtor.com. And now a service that makes staging even simpler (and way more affordable) is growing in popularity.

Virtual staging companies like Rooomy transform otherwise barren rooms in home listings into inviting interiors using 3-D imagery and CGI. While this technology isn’t completely new, it has been trending of late, especially as people sell their homes in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, according to Reator.com: Virtual styling was pretty much made for social distancing. Plus it ensures you don’t have to rely on what a pro stager has in their warehouse—you can easily reimagine that small, awkward room as a home office without stressing about having to get your hands on a chic desk chair. Even better yet, virtual services ring in at about a third of the cost of IRL staging.

The same advice applies whether you’re staging your home virtually or not.  Porter Hovey, founder of Hovey Design, recommends designing symmetrical spaces as much as possible for mass appeal, and Andrew Bowen, ASH NYC’s director of staging, emphasizes the importance of making sure all your furniture and wall decor is properly scaled in your space (you don’t want to have one small piece of art as the only thing on a massive wall). With the right design, your home is sure to sell in no time—and hopefully for even more than you anticipated.

Introducing Domino’s new podcast, Design Time, where we explore spaces with meaning. Each week, join editor-in-chief Jessica Romm Perez along with talented creatives and designers from our community to explore how to create a home that tells your story. Listen now and subscribe for new episodes every Thursday.