Virtual Reality Headsets Expand The New Home Shopping Experience

Virtual Reality Headsets Expand The New Home Shopping Experience

Virtual reality is no longer just for computer games, as virtual reality headsets are the newest tool to help consumers select a new home from PulteGroup, one of the nation's largest homebuilders.

Homebuyers can now don goggles and take a virtual tour of their potential future home at PulteGroup's Starkey Ranch community near Tampa, Florida, and at its active adult community The Retreat at Carmel in Carmel, New York.

"The VR experience is a phenomenal selling tool, especially with a new community like Starkey Ranch that still has its model homes under construction," says Sean Strickler, division president for the West Florida operations.

"The breathtaking views of our home sites speak for themselves, but consumers want to see the inside of our homes and virtual reality can make that happen. With a headset, guests can see the home's features and get a sense of how the spaces will feel like as they 'walk' through them. The technology allows potential buyers to really experience the home, which makes them feel much more comfortable with their purchase decision."

The virtual reality experience at Starkey Ranch is based on live tours, which means that PulteGroup took existing, decorated homes that exist in other communities to create the virtual experience.

The Retreat at Carmel by Pulte Homes, about 10 minutes from Westchester, New York, offers 27 stacked flat condos and won't have a designer-decorated model in place until summer of 2017. The community offers a virtual reality experience using computer-generated imagery (CGI) onsite at the community, said Matt Roesch, vice president of sales for the Company's New Jersey/New York operations.

"For many homebuyers, it can be very difficult to visualize the depth of a space or imagine themselves living in a particular home. With our sales model still several months away from completion, we needed out-of-the-box thinking to get buyers into the community and comfortable enough to sign a contract. It has definitely helped drive traffic and led to about a third of the stacked condos sold."

Interested buyers can visit the sales center to experience the virtual tour on a big screen TV while using the goggles to walk around every space in the home. The goggles are plugged into the consumer's smartphone and experience it either in the sales center or even when they're home.

Experience the Virtual Reality Drumlin floorplan at The Retreat at Carmel at

Topics: Appliances, Connected Homes / Smart Homes, Going Green, Home Design & Plans, Interior Design, Sustainability Trends & Statistics

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