If you have a dog or a cat, chances are that you are an animal lover. However, while you may love your pet, homes with pets can be a big turn off for potential home buyers. Pets can either be an attractive distraction, distracting prospective buyers from looking at the home or completely the opposite – frightening, smelly, and off-putting.
Here are five simple tips to help you pet-proof your home when preparing it for sale…
Check Your Insurance. Although you may know that your pets would never hurt anyone, they could scratch or bite a potential buyer whom they mistake for an intruder. You could be held liable for any harm that your pet causes, so make sure that your homeowner insurance covers you for these kind of incidents.
Prepare Your Yard. Buyers will be walking around the outdoor living spaces of your home. This stroll could easily be ruined if they step in a mess in your yard or twist an ankle in a hole where your dog likes to dig. Make sure that you clean up your yard before each showing to prevent this.
Before putting your home on the market, make sure that your yard is green. Sometimes homes with pets can have yards with brown and yellow patches in the grass. Try to aerate and seed these bare spots or replace the patches with new sod.
Remove Pet Odors and Stains. Unfortunately, pets have accidents and removing the odors pets leave behind is one of the biggest challenges. While it is possible to get used to the pet smell over time, new visitors to your home will be sure to notice the smells. Our sense of smell has a powerful effect on our emotions, our memory, and our perception of things. An initial odor upon entering a house is sure to stick in the buyer’s mind.
If a bacteria-eating pet odor remover doesn’t banish all traces of the odor, you should look into hiring a professional service to clean your carpets and rugs.
Hide The Evidence. You want your buyers to be as unaware of your pet ownership as possible. Like kids, pets tend to accumulate a lot of things such as leashes, collars, toys, water bowls, food, and more! No matter how adorable you may think it all is, to buyers it is just clutter. Make sure to stow away your pet’s items in a cupboard or closet.
Remove Pets For Showings. When selling a home with pets, at the very least, you should remove them from your home when you are showing the property. All the cute things your pets do will not help you sell your home and it will only remind potential buyers that the home as previously contained pets.
Having a pet in the home or yard during a showing can create complications for your agent while trying to show the home and it puts your pet at risk of accidently getting out during the proves.
If for any reason you cannot get home in time to remove your pet from the home during a showing, your next best option is to keep your pet in a contained space and notify the agent and buyer about it ahead of time.
If you have any questions or need some advice about selling a home, call us today at 614.855.8700!