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Kaylie Tucker Wed, Feb 15, '23 4 min read

A New Perspective: Investing in Invisible Real Estate

This is a guest blog by Configura Service Partner, Kaylie Tucker, owner of Konvergent Solutions, highlighting a powerful perspective for investing in the virtual world of technology instead of the physical world of real estate.


Investing in invisible real estate  


It should come as no surprise that the workplace as we know it is undergoing a renaissance. The vibe is like the way astronauts are working to determine the best way to become an interplanetary species on Mars. That may seem like a stretch, but it really isn’t, and here’s why!

Furniture manufacturers are clambering over each other to determine what is the new and best way to work in this, here-to-stay, hybrid work-from-home culture. Real-estate costs are rising, and how and where we work is evolving.

As teams are now dispersed around the globe, how we think about traditional office furniture production and sales are also in major flux. Companies everywhere are paying exorbitant rent for furniture showrooms that, sadly, do little more than collect dust.

Instead of continuing to shovel money into these so-called “ghost towns”, why not consider investing in technology that can create any space one could ever imagine?

It is time we rethink the showroom landscape in the same way we are reinventing the office of today.


Living Room rendering Challenge inspiration


The Pinterest challenge  


Challenge inspirationRendering

In September 2022, Konvergent Solutions embarked on a Pinterest Challenge. The challenge was simple: select 10 images from real-life spaces then, from scratch, create and render those spaces identically from CET Commercial Interiors to Twinmotion in 10 days.  

Not only was the challenge successfully achieved, but the results were amazing! It was mind boggling how quickly things went from being a blank space to a digitally recreated real-life scenario.

This begs the question, why hasn’t this digital reality translated into the showrooms of the commercial furniture industry?


Why rent when you can imagine  



If you are in furniture design, you probably spend months or even years designing a specific piece. When you are ready to unveil it to the world, you want to create a certain atmosphere or feeling to incite an emotional response from potential customers.

You invest in a showroom for the space, lighting, accessories and professional photography in order to stage your furniture in a way that imparts that exact feeling or creates that perfect environment.

But why not create the exact look you envision in your mind, virtually? In digital spaces, there are no landlords or upkeep costs to maintain. And, the high-quality visual renderings and immersive experiences can feel just as real as in physical reality. Honestly!

Some of you may be saying, “yes but customers want to kick the tires, swivel in a chair, or open and shut the drawers of a workstation to try it out.” If this sounds familiar to you, consider putting your showroom to greater use—host events, offer incentives, etc. Be strategic! Use the physical space to exhibit exactly how products are used in a working environment.

On the flip side, I believe customers today are more open to new shopping experiences and virtual tours are a great option.




The future of the furniture showroom  


What I suggest doesn’t have to be as dramatic as shutting down showrooms altogether. Porter in Seattle, Washington, is rethinking their furniture showroom. They’re calling it “radical hospitality.”  

Porter has created a hybrid showroom experience integrating a café, bar, and co-work space. The Shop seamlessly integrates hospitality design, event space, office space, and immersive retail into the showroom environment. It's a usable space that is being used in creative and appealing ways. Win-win-win!


Put on your VR headset and take the virtual leap  


Yulio says the design industry is going to witness a “mass VR adoption in the workplace.” Customers are aware of the rise of virtual reality, and some are already getting used to how to experience spaces in a virtual sense.  




Let’s rewind the clock back to 2019 when Zoom was only a “sometimes” thing. Today, there are few people out there that do not know how to navigate the world of virtual meeting rooms. It didn’t take long for a major shift to occur, substantially due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Now is the time to start investing in technology partners and digital artists that can create any space you can dream up that can be shared with anyone, anywhere, anytime.

If we start thinking about how we want to market furniture products and office accessories, the sky's the limit as to what type of spaces are possible. RSC is one company already doing extremely well in this arena, creating seamless renderings, animations, VR experiences, and interactive design spaces.

As we continue to rethink how offices function, as well as our showrooms, it is important to take a step back and look holistically at the entire furniture sales process. Maybe there are other ways our work can be propelled into the future and force us to reimagine how furniture is sold.

That doesn’t mean we have to jump in and go full “Metaverse.” However, reexamining where and how our real-estate costs are being spent, I think, is certainly on the virtual table.


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Kaylie Tucker

Kaylie Tucker is the owner of Konvergent Solutions, a software consulting company geared towards helping CET Commercial Interiors users employ the program efficiently and effectively to allow designers to have more time to enjoy the process of being creative. She has been in the design industry since 2000 and has designed for multiple large companies including Starbucks and Amazon. In addition to being a designer, she has also aided on the technology side, helping to develop CET Extensions. She resides near Seattle, Washington, USA and enjoys being surrounded by nature and rain; so much so that she based her whole company’s logo and mission statement around a weather pattern found in the Pacific Northwest.