Sure, you love your fur-babies, but could they be standing in the way of you selling your home? Many of us love having a pet companion, and their presence can make a house feel more like a home. However, if you are planning to sell your house, consider that other people may not feel the same way. Read through these pet-related tips to prepare your home for all potential buyers!
1. Ask a friend or neighbor who doesn’t spend a lot of time in your home to walk through your house. They will likely be able to pick up on pet odors or notice small scratches or stains. We often become accustomed to smells and don’t register if our home has started to smell like Fido or Fluffy.
2. If pet odors or damage is discovered, do what you can to remedy it. Have your carpets professionally cleaned or consider replacing them if the pet damage is significant. If refinishing wood flooring is in your budget, removing any claw scratches can give your home a fresh look. If the outdoor temperatures allow for it, open many windows to air out your home. Fresh air is more effective than scented room sprays or candles that only mask pet odors and could potentially turn off prospective buyers even more! If you are actively showing your house, remember to vacuum and clean litter boxes, cages, and food dishes daily!
3. When showing your home, the ideal is to make it appear as much like a hotel as possible by removing personal items. This allows prospective buyers to envision the space as their own. Make sure to remove pet toys, beds, leashes, etc. from common areas. If possible, temporarily move food and water dishes, litter boxes, and small pet cages to a safe but out of the way location, such as a mud room or garage.
4. Make sure your pet will be safe during open house showings. If your dog is timid around strangers, or your cat bolts for the back door every time it opens, make sure to have a solution before you start showing your home. If possible, ask a close friend or neighbor to watch your pet at their home for the day. Or in a pinch, you could opt for short-term boarding at a nearby kennel. The moving process can be stressful on pets, and it is just as important to ensure their health and safety as it is to make your home appeal to prospective buyers.
5. Advertise the pet perks about your home to potential buyers. For example, if you have an electric fence already installed, a dog run in the backyard or pet doors to the basement. If you’re located within walking distance to a pet park, that’s a big selling point! Sharing the positive, pet-friendly benefits in your home's listing may just attract the perfect buyer to your home.
Make sure your Realtor is aware of your pets’ needs and discuss the best plan to ensure that all hands and paws are on-deck to make selling your home a reality.