• Sarah Lipkowitz

Selling A Home With Pets

Preparing your home for sale when you have pets can feel like an arduous task. Pets add another layer of stress to what can already be a stressful process and it can be difficult to work around pets when it comes time to show your home to buyers. Fortunately, there are some relatively simple steps you can take to make sure your pets don't interfere with the sale of your home.

Remove Odors. Many pet owners worry about odors when it comes time to sell. After all, we may not even notice any odors given that we live with our pets every day. Firstly, enzyme cleaners are your friends. You don’t want to light a candle or use strong fragrances to cover up odors because buyers can tell. Cleaning carpets and other textiles with an enzyme cleaner, like Nature’s Miracle, will get to the root of the issue. You may also consider having carpets professionally cleaned.

*Remember to change your air filters!

Make Repairs. If your pets have caused damage, you will want to make repairs. Buyers tend to fixate on potential projects when they enter a home and are given to overestimating the cost of repairs. Note that visible damage may lead them to believe that there is hidden damage that they can’t see which often makes buyers skittish.

Clean Up. You want to make sure you pick up after your pet. As you may have guessed, it is important to keep the yard clean so buyers can check it out without having to worry about stepping in poo. It is also a good idea to pick up any toys and bones laying around both in the yard and in the home. A basket in the corner is a great solution. I don’t necessarily feel that you need to remove toys and food bowls from sight entirely, but you do want to reduce the risk of someone tripping over your pet’s things. Depending on just how spoiled your pet is, it may be that their toys and treats can leave the home feeling cluttered as well. I know my dog has enough toys to fill more than one basket around the house.

Remove Or Crate Pets. Having pets in the home during showings can not only be incredibly stressful on buyers, but also on the pets themselves. In an ideal world, pets would be removed from the property before each showing, however, this is not always feasible. The next best option is to make sure pets are confined to a particular area and to give the buyer’s agent information on what types of pets are in the home and how best to work around them. When I work with farm sellers, I give the buyer's agents instructions on how to stay safe around the livestock and I feel the same should be done for house pets. Remember, buyers could be afraid of your pets so making sure everyone is as comfortable as possible (animals included) will ensure smooth showings and a quicker sale.

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