Special Considerations for Selling Homes with Pets
According to the ASPCA, it’s estimated that 78 million dogs and 85.8 million cats are owned in the United States. Chances are if you’re a homeowner, you’re probably a pet owner as well. During those hectic home-selling times, it’s likely that we just might overlook how things can affect Fido or Fluffy. Preparing and planning beforehand can guarantee that the process goes as smoothly as possible for you and your pets. Here’s how:
Talk to Your Pet’s Veterinarian
Think about how stressful it is to have people traipsing through your home. Now multiply that by about 100% and consider how your pets might feel. After all, they haven’t a clue as to what’s going on. All they know is strangers are suddenly coming and going. Talking to your veterinarian, prior to placing your home on the market, is an excellent idea. Particularly if you have an older pet. Your veterinarian will be able to suggest some strategies for limiting your pet’s anxiety.
Find a Pet Sitter
Seriously consider removing your pet from the home while your realtor is showing it to prospective buyers. To you and your family, your pet is cute and cuddly. To a complete stranger…not so much. Ask a trusted neighbor, friend or family member if they’d be willing to dog or cat sit during showings. If all else fails, it might be necessary to board your pet. Remember, there are serious liability issues to take into account. Should your dog or cat bite someone, even while in your own home, you could very well be sued.
Clear Away Your Pet’s Belongings
As you would with family mementos and other personal items, you should stash pet bowls, beds, litter boxes and pet toys out of site while your home is being shown by your realtor. Homebuyers want to envision your home as it will look when they’re occupying it. Even pet photos should be tucked away.
Clean, Disinfect and Repair
While you’re putting away Fido’s belongings, check for other telltale signs that a pet lives in your home. Clean pet stains from carpets and other floor surfaces. Repair any doggie or kitty damage throughout your home. Remove any pet odors from fabrics, carpets, etc. If necessary, hire a professional cleaning company to completely clean and disinfect your home so it smells fresh, clean and inviting.
Cleaning the backyard is also a must. Potential buyers will want to have a look around outdoors as well. Stepping in a doggie landmine will certainly leave a lasting impression – unfortunately, not the good kind.
Remember, selling your home is a big undertaking, filled with excitement as well as stress. Making sure that all members of the family, even the four-legged ones, are included in the process will help things go as efficiently as possible.
If you have any other suggestions, we would love to hear them. Feel free to comment below.