I’m just going to give it to you straight, owners of dogs, cats, fish, birds, et al. It’s gonna ruffle some feathers, make some hair stand up on backs, make others howl in protest and disbelief, while giving others proper paws for thought. You, dear pet-loving friends of mine, better sit down for this. Before I say anything, I want you to know I am a fan of our furry friends and always have been.
Here are the cold, hard facts:
- There are many people out there who have never had pets, don’t understand why people have pets and only associate having pets with pet hair, pet stains and pet damage.
- Pet(s) can prevent sellers from getting top dollar or even a buyer. That’s how polarizing pets can be.
The goal when selling a home usually is to get the most money in the shortest amount of time. So, if that is your goal as well, pet lover, then I have some tips for you to consider.
- BEST THING: to do while you’re house is on the market is to drop the furry family member off at a relative’s home for an extended vacay. I know that seems harsh, but when the pet isn’t around, it’s easier to keep the house clean, to keep it smelling fresh and it keeps the fact that there has been a pet living in the potential buyer’s next home out of site and therefore out of mind.
- If you shrug off all professional advice and refuse to move your pets out of the house, then at least minimize the objections and nuisance factors, real or otherwise:
- Cat Litter Boxes & Dog Potty Pads: Keep them out of sight and impeccably clean. Nothing turns off buyers faster than opening the door to the laundry room and being greeted by a full or stinky cat box. Do not put a litter box in your bedroom closet.
- Carpet & Floor Pet Stains: Hire professionals to remove the stains. Buyers will spot them and form unfavorable opinions about the rest of the house. If the stains can’t be removed, then remove the floor covering and replace it.
- Pet Odors and Smells:
- Cat urine is the worst. Without question. The. Worst. Bring in a neighbor to do a whiff test. Dog odor gets into carpeting and pet beds, too.
- Do not use air fresheners. People with allergies will react.
- Try enzyme cleaners such as Simple Solution or Nature’s Miracle or call a professional ozone company
- Remove Visible Signs of a Pet
- You may be required by state law to disclose that pets have lived in your home, but you don’t need to advertise that pets live at your house. Removing signs that you have a pet is simply a smart practice. Why turn off a buyer at the get-go? It’s those first impressions that are so all-fired important.
- Do not put photos online showing your cat asleep on the bed
- Seal up doggie doors
- Put away food and water bowls when not in use
- Vacuum religiously, every day, sometimes twice a day
- Pick up pet toys and put them away
- Pack up cat trees and other signs of cat paraphernalia
- Remove photos of pets from refrigerator, walls and table tops
- Pack up all cages, carriers and other tell-tale signs
If you have any questions at all about the things you can do to make both your pet and the potential buyer feels awesome, give us a shout!