With six in 10 Americans owning some kind of pet, there’s a huge chance you could be living with a furry (or scaly) friend while trying to sell your home. Here are some great tips to help your pet feel comfortable and keep your home, not your pet, front of mind for any potential buyers.
- If you can, hire a professional cleaning service to get rid of all dog and cat hair. Many potential home buyers have allergies to pets, some of which can be very severe. A professional cleaning service can help get your home ready for showings by eliminating pet hair and dander from your furniture, carpets, drapes and other parts of your home. Also, think about having your ductwork cleaned so that allergens aren’t traveling through the air.
- Eliminate pet odors. Because you live with your pet every day, you may be used to any smells associated with your pet. Visitors, however, will pick up on them right away. Be sure to eliminate any litter boxes during the showings and replace them after guests leave. If you’re unsure about any pet odors, ask your real estate agent or a neighbor to do a “sniff test” on your home.
- Are you worried about old stains from your puppy’s more “accident”-prone days? The Humane Society recommends buying a black light at a home supply store to find urine stains, and you can neutralize them yourself or with a professional carpet cleaner.
- Be sure there is no exterior damage from your pets. Many pets, especially dogs, love to dig in the yard. If your pet is accustomed to doing so, inspect any recent landscaping they may have disrupted, and be sure to hide any damage to your otherwise perfect yard.
- Can my pet stay at home during showings? It shouldn’t, or at least it should be confined with specific instructions for your real estate agent. Just as the house is best shown off on it’s own without any homeowners present, its best if there are no pets around. You can never predict the allergies or fears of people around various kinds of pets, even if you know your animal would never hurt anyone. Try taking your dog for a walk during showings, or see if your pets can stay with a friend or family member.
By taking a few simple steps while your house is on the market, both you and your pets can be comfortable while still showing the best your home has to offer. As always, talk to your Shorewest real estate agent for more information on staging your home for sale, with or without pets.