5 Selling Tips for your Home with Pets
Preparing your home for sale with pets is a question I’m being always asked when meeting with potential home sellers. If you are putting up your home for sale and are living with pets, you need to consider that although almost everyone loves pets, home buyers do not. It may be hard to imagine people with negative attitudes towards your furry friends, but this is just the reality of when selling a home.
According to a study conducted by the National Association of Realtors (NAR) and published in February 2017, 67% of REALTORS® said pet ownership has a “moderate to major” impact when selling a home.
Why do most home buyers steer away from homes with pets? Here are some reasons:
Pets, especially dogs, instill fear in most people.
They think your pets may bite, vomit, chew, claw, and pretty much have ruined some parts of the home.
Some buyers do not have experience with pets and may feel uncomfortable around them.
If you want to sell your home for top dollar, then you must take some steps if you have pets living in your home.
5 Selling Tips on how to sell your home with pets:
1. Move your pets away to another place while your home is on the market. Simply moving them to the garage, backyard, or to another room will not do. Arrange for a relative, friend or neighbor to take care of them while your home is listed or board them at a kennel. It may be a difficult move on your part, but the sacrifice will be worth it. Having a pet around your home during showings could turn off potential buyers.
2. If moving your pet is not possible or you simply could not live a day without your pets, then try to minimize the nuisance factors as much as possible.
3. Keep cat litter boxes and dog potty pads clean and out of sight to avoid buyers getting turned off by stinky pet odors. While natural cleaning supplies do a great job with your regular cleaning, have your carpets and floor pet stains professionally cleaned. If your buyers see these tell-tale signs of pet stains, they may also have negative opinions about the rest of your home. If the stains are impossible to remove, just remove the carpet and replace it.
4. For strong pet odors and smells like cat urine (which is the worst), do not use air fresheners as some buyers might be allergic to them. Try enzyme cleaners instead or hire a professional ozone company.
5. Although state law may require you to disclose that you had pets living in your home, you don’t need to advertise this to your buyers. Remove all signs that you have a pet to avoid giving buyers a negative first impression. Remove any photos, seal all doggie doors, store away food and water bowls, remove pet toys and paraphernalia, and pack up and store all pet cages and carriers.
Showing your House with Pets – Selling Tip with pets present
If you are showing your home with your pets in it, make sure to put your pets in a carrier with a note attached warning buyers to not disturb the pets. You can’t predict how your pet will react to your buyers, so better to be safe than sorry. I was showing a home to a buyer, when upon entering the home we were greeted by a rather large barking dog. Needless to say, we closed and locked the door back and my buyer decided not to go back to see this home.
More resources for home owners with pets
- Safely Cleaning Up After Your Pet (Natural Solutions), Caesar Milan
- 7 Tips to Sell a Home with Pets (Bill Gassett)
About the author: The above real estate article “5 Selling Tips for your Home with Pets” was written by Petra Norris of Lakeland Real Estate Group, Inc. With over 20 years of combined experience of selling or buying, we would love to share our knowledge and expertise. Petra can be reached via email at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at 863-712-4207