We always tell our listing clients to live like they’re selling. But how do you do that when you have a pet? How do you make your home stand out above the rest with a four-legged family member, or a feathery one, or a slithery one?
You want buyers to picture themselves in your home. This means giving them space to imagine living there. You’ll hear Chris often talking about depersonalizing your space, this includes your pet and all they bring with them.
I’ve got six things to consider when living like your selling includes your pets:
- Can you temporarily relocate your pet while you show-and-sell your home?
A friend or family member might be able to home your pet for a few weeks so that you can remove all signs of having a pet in the house. I happen to be a pet lover but not all buyers are. Some consider pets a huge turn-off when looking at potential homes. You want potential buyers to picture themselves in the house – themselves also includes their pets.
- Always remove your pet during a showing.
Cats might seem harmless but you never know if the person look at the house is allergic or worse yet, bringing along a curious toddler.Don’t just remove the pet – remove toys, beds, food bowls and litter boxes, too. I’ve heard realtors recommend hiding photos of your pet – I’d say use your best judgment there.
The bare minimum here is crating your pet during a showing. My only advice here is to make sure the crate isn’t in a place where sellers would linger. You’ll kill the vibe quickly if you’ve got a yelping dog in a crate in the middle of the living room.
- Fix the damage
Dogs or cats will inevitably destroy something. For us, it’s the trim on the garage door where Milton scratches to get in.Before you show your house, fix the pet damage. Our fix is simple, they make scratch plates for doors, so we’ll install one of those and replace the door trim. But repairing pet damage might be as involved as fixing walls or replacing carpet.
Your repairs might be expensive, but they’ll be worth it.
- Remove pet owners and stains.
New visitors are sure to notice the smell of pets. This is not something you want to have happen.Our sense of smell is powerfully linked to our emotions, memories and perceptions of things. A glade plug in or a sensy warmer is not going to fix this – have carpets and furniture professionally cleaned and deoderized and air out your house.
A strong odor is one of the top reasons a buyer will pass on a home.
- Clean your Yard!
Pick up any messes in the yard and have sod replaced and other damage replaced as necessary. Especially in winter, when things are apparent.To some buyers the yard is as important as the inside the of the house. So don’t neglect it.
- Finally – Remember pet liability.
You can be liable for your pet biting someone while on your property. Leaving your pet on property during a showing can open you up to some liability. I feel like I’m belaboring this one a bit – but you just don’t know who’s going be there when you’re not.