For many pet lovers, their furry friend is simply another member of the family. When it comes time to show your house for sale though, the slogan ‘man’s best friend’ may not apply to every potential buyer. Here are some tips for pet lovers to keep in mind:
1. Clean the yard! The worst thing in the world is to make a bad impression before your prospective buyers even walk in the front door. Be sure and do a ‘doggie doo’ clean sweep of both front and back yard prior to any showings, thus avoiding any uncomfortable conversations that, well, stink.
2. Send the pets on a play date! Believe it or not, some people do not consider themselves ‘animal people’; even more to the point, some folks are downright afraid of pets. While your 100 lb terrier may in fact be as vicious as the butterfly he is known to chase around the yard, your visitors probably don’t know that. Consider sending the furry kids to play with a friend for the day on an open house or showing. Many vets also offer temporary boarding options.
3. De-fur the home! Pets may be lovable but boy can they make a mess. From shedding hair in carpets and couches to odor-tastic cat litter, a fresh house is a more inviting house. Be sure and vacuum prior to showings, and always keep fresh litter and deodorizer on hand for drop-in visits.
4. Hide the evidence! If your cat is prone to scratching, be sure and sand / repaint any areas on the moulding or walls that may have been damaged over the years. Giant stuffed dog toys may be cute to you, but they likely just amount to clutter in the eyes of a buyer, so be sure and put them out of sight. Make sure the pet food dishes look tidy – slopped water or spilled dry food all over the kitchen floor is NOT a good look.
5. Remember your liability! Even though your furry friend is an angel 364 days out of the year, animals can still be unpredictable around new people. A dog bite or a cat scratch can be a scary thing when it happens to a stranger in your home, so be sure and keep your pets a safe distance from visitors during a showing. A barking dog is not exactly an inviting environment either, so again – consider sending your pets to a different location for the day. Odds are good your showing will then go purrrrrfect. Good luck and happy showing!