Marketing a Home to Sell: 5 Listing Photo Mistakes to Avoid When Selling a Home

When it comes time to sell your home, you’ll want to make it really stand out over the competition. It’s no secret that buyers begin their home search on the internet, which means the first impression they’ll have on your home is the images accompanying the listing description. No matter how enticing that description might be, they’ll focus their attention on the photos first and foremost.

If they don’t like the depiction of your home, they’re not likely to read about the great features, or simply dismiss those features as covering for the lack of quality. Quite simply, the cliche holds true, and you won’t get a second chance at a first impression.

Research reveals that the average time to form such an impression is about 7 seconds, and in an age where point and click is readily available, potential buyers will opt to put their mouse to use, clicking away quickly when they see something they don’t like.


In Sarasota, the average listing price is $601,110, but when waterfront is added to the equation, property prices go up substantially. The fact a home is on the water means it has something landlocked properties lack. However, the water isn’t an automatic sell. There will be other homes with the same view to compete with and you want your property to best out the competition.

“Selling your home – especially if you’ve never done it before – can be surprisingly time-consuming and emotionally challenging. Strangers will come into your home and poke around in your closets and cabinets. They will criticize a place that has probably become more than just four walls and a roof to you, and then, to top it all off, they will offer you less money than you think your home is worth.” —

The first thing to do is set the right price. By looking at sales of like homes in the past three to six months, you’ll have a good idea of what you’ll be able to sell it for. Staging is a must in these situations, as affluent buyers are able to pick as they so choose.

This being the case, your home ought to grab their attention from the moment they see it when searching online and the way to accomplish that feat is to have stunning photos. Seeing is believing and potential buyers will surely rely on their eyes to create a list of possible homes.


When you list your property, you’re supposed to sell the sizzle, not the steak. The way to make your home deliciously irresistible is to capture its best qualities, and you can’t do that if the photos aren’t superb. Here are five real estate listing photo mistakes you’ll want to actively avoid:

  1. Crooked and weirdly angled photos. Such faux pas will make buyers stop and wonder why you chose to upload these photos. However, their curiosity won’t last, because instead of trying to solve the mystery of why, they’ll simply go on to the next listing. Don’t make the mistake of uploading crooked photos or images that are taken from a weird angle.
  2. Blurry or out of focus photos. There’s no excuse for including blurry or out of focus images in your listing. Do yourself a favor and take several shots of each room from different perspectives. Then, sort through those images to pick the best ones. Remember, this is your only chance to make a first impression.
  3. Photos with people or pets included. This is a huge mistake for many reasons. First and foremost, you might think it makes the home look more welcoming, more friendly, more family oriented; but, potential buyers aren’t at all interested in buying your life, they are looking for their home. In addition, you run the risk of telling potential buyers their looking at a home with pet damage.
  4. Interior photos taken under poor lighting. Images captured under poor or inadequate lighting will do you no go whatsoever. So, be sure to take several pictures with different lighting and pick the best ones from the bunch.
  5. Partial room shots. These do nothing but make people wonder what’s in the rest of the room and why that portion isn’t included. Potential buyers want to see all of the home, or, as much as possible. Take photos which capture the whole room and don’t be afraid to take them from different angles to achieve that.

Last but not least, have a someone who’s not familiar with your property look over the pictures before you upload them. This will give you a fresh perspective and help you to choose the best ones. For more advice about listing your property to get it to sell, contact me for a free consultation.