Tips on Selling Your House With Pets!
I’ve sold plenty of homes that have pets which makes sense since over 60% of homeowners have pets. I’ve seen everything from dogs, cats, birds, ferrets, hamsters fish to sloths, snakes, chickens and baby pigs! Pet odors and stains are one of the main deterrents to a buyer. That’s covered in more detail in my next blog about “why your house didn’t sell”
Above is my dog, Fawn. In my mind, she’s smarter than my human friends, friendly, doesn’t smell and has the run of the house. I know she would have a huge issue if I decided to sell her home. I know she smells (I’ve gotten used to it)
1. REMOVE ALL SIGNS OF PETS
Buyers shouldn’t be able to tell or smell that you have pets. Try to pack up everything pet-related, including:
- Food and bowls
- Pet beds
- Cat climbers or scratching posts
- Pictures of family pets
Some people are able to relocate the pet to another home temporarily. If this is unrealistic, pack items in an organized storage container and put in the garage or shed.
2. REMOVE ODORS
Once you relocate the personal pet products above, consider having floors and carpeting professionally cleaned. Bad smells have an adverse emotional effect and one of the first things that will turn buyers off.
- Wash everything you can from furniture covers, quilts, comforters, curtains, towels, and throw pillows
- If your carpets are heavily stained and in bad shape, you may have to replace it.
- Bathe your pet frequently
- Brush or comb your pet outside, daily
- Vacuum at least once a day, and again before showings
- Clean your pet’s living space- ie: fish tanks, cages, and bedding
- Remove litter boxes or potty pads
- Replace the filter in your HVAC system
- Add a HEPA filter to absorb particles and dander
- Avoid air fresheners and scented candles that attempt to mask odor.
3. Repair Damage Done By Pets:
Potential buyers view homes with a critical eye, and even small scratches and marks can make a buyer think you haven’t taken good care of the property. Make these repairs before listing:
- Stained or torn carpets
- Scratched, worn, or torn furniture
- Scratched hardwood or other flooring
- Claw or chew marks on doors, walls, baseboards, or window sills
- Ripped window treatments
CLEAN UP YOUR OUTSIDE, WHICH IS AS IMPORTANT AS THE INSIDE!
- Signs of Digging in the lawn
- Pick up after your pet on a regular basis
- Trampled bushes
- Damaged fencing
- Torn window screen
4. Showings and Open Houses
Pets should be removed or crated/contained for all showings. At the very least, they are a distraction, but could lead to more serious consequences such as biting, or getting out which can lead to serious liability issues. Even if your pet is friendly, everyone has a bad day and this is a new environment for them. It could also be a good opportunity to take your pet to a friend’s house or park!