We adore our pets, but not everyone feels the same. Some people are
afraid of cats and dogs. Some are allergic. You never know. If your
home is for sale, you don't want is to lose a potential sale if a buyer walks into
a barking dog, mess on the floor or a litter box. Here are some tips for
selling a home with pets.
Remove pets during showings, if possible. This is your best option to avoid
any issues. Liability is a big issue. You dog is an angel, but any
dog can bite, given the right situation. We don't want that to
happen. Friendly dogs are often distracting to buyers looking at your home
- which is why they’re there! If the potential buyers happen to like dogs,
they're busy petting your dog instead of looking at your home. And we don't want
anyone's cat or dog running out the door either. Buyers need to feel
comfortable in the space. They need time to look and imagine themselves
living in the home. That's hard to do with distractions…
Take your dogs for a walk or a drive during showings. Book a day at the
groomer or board them, if possible. I know, this is probably not an option, but
taking them out for a short period of time usually is. If you absolutely cannot
board them, make sure they're crated when people arrive. Your dog is probably
stressed about the move, as well. There are strange people coming into their
home. It's hard to concentrate looking at a house with constant barking.
Repair any damage done by pets. Did the dog chew the baseboard when s/he was
a puppy? Dig under the fence? Whatever the damage is, if there is
any, have it repaired prior to showing your home.
Clean. Clean. Deodorize. Then clean some more. We are
with our pets on a daily basis, so we become immune to most pet odors. Have
a neutral person come into your home and give you an honest assessment. Do
they smell your pets? Are there any offensive odors? If they can
smell it, buyers will smell it too. Have your home professionally cleaned.
Please do not attempt to cover up the smell; it doesn't work. Have a deep
cleaning done on your home. This will go a long way towards getting it sold.
Have your air conditioner cleaned and serviced. Change your filter. It
will help to rid the house of pet fur and hair. The cleaner the house is,
the better. Rake your rugs and carpets. You'll be amazed at the amount of
fur, hair and dust you pick up using a rake versus a vacuum cleaner. Have
your carpets professionally cleaned, especially if they're stained. If
they can’t be cleaned, consider replacing them.
Declutter. Put the pet toys and things away. This includes crates,
blankets, pee pads, dog beds, toys, leashes, food and bowls, whatever. The
cleaner and less cluttered the house shows, the better. Try to remove as much
pet stuff as possible, even just temporarily for a showing
Remember the goal is to sell your home. And clean homes sell faster
and for more money than dirty ones.
Elyse Berman, PA, CRS is a Pet-Friendly REALTOR® who has been
helping people buy and sell homes for the past 16-plus years. She serves Palm
Beach County, Florida. Check out her blog.