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Have Pets? Tips for Selling Your Home — the Pet-Friendly Way!

Showing your home is complicated when you have pets. You’ll want to consider how potential buyers will feel about your pets: Some people are uncomfortable around animals, no matter how well-behaved and loving those animals are. Some people are allergic to fur, or feathers, or both. The sights and smells of life with a pet may make many potential buyers see your home as less clean and valuable than it is. More important, though, is your pet’s safety while strangers are coming to see your (and their) home. Here are a few tips to make the best of home showings, for your potential buyers and for your pet.

1. Consider relocating your pet while your house is on the market. Yes, it’s an extreme solution, but it is by far the best way to insure that your pets are safe and comfortable, and that nothing about them—not their smell, their shedding, or their behavior—will negatively affect your potential buyers’ impression of your home. Elizabeth Weintraub, About.com’s Home Buying/Selling Guide, strongly recommends relocating your pets until your home is sold. This gives you a chance to clean up stains and hair once and for all, get rid of litter boxes, and rest assured that nobody will accidentally let your dog or cat out during a showing. This a personal decision, of course, but if you can find a safe, affordable place for your pets to stay until your house sells, that is the safest and simplest plan.

2. Think about how your home smells. It goes without saying that you should keep litter boxes clean and clear up any obvious stains, but go beyond the basics. Ask for a second sniffer—your real estate agent, your home stager, or an honest friend—to tell you how your home really smells. Research has shown that we all get used to the smells of our own homes, so that we can’t really tell how they smell to others. Our post on smells and home staging will help you find out your home’s true aroma, and make changes to insure that your home smells good to potential buyers.

3. Pay attention to your yard. Remember, your front yard is the first thing your potential buyers will see, and your back yard is a major selling point. If you have a dog, your yards will probably need a little extra care. Repair any hot spots where grass has died, refill any spots your dog has dug up, and make sure all feces is picked up daily, and again before each showing, if possible.

4. Follow this extra advice if your pets stay in the home. Don’t mention your pets in the main listing, which potential buyers will see. Rules about your pets may turn buyers off. You can (and should) mention your pets in the listing’s notes to the agent, and leave a note about your pets inside the lockbox, reminding them if your pets will be present. You may also ask to be given at least one hour’s notice for showings (so you’ll have time to run home and take your pets out for a walk), but this may not always be possible. Real estate broker Rhonda Duffy has posted this article, which is full of practical advice for pet owners with homes on the market. Her most interesting idea is this: If your pets must still be in the home when it’s being shown, “make them look special.” Keep them clean and beautiful, so they’re a benefit instead of a drawback.

The Staff at San Juan Realty, Inc.

220 South Lens Street Ridgway Colorado for sale Ridgway CO

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