What to do with pets when selling your home Image

What to do with pets when selling your home

By Contributor on Oct 30, 2017

Are you thinking of selling your home, but are concerned that your pet’s presence may turn away potential buyers?

There are nearly 80,000 licenced dogs and cats in the Greater Toronto Area (GTA), so some may assume that prospective purchasers wouldn’t mind the odd pet hair tumbleweed, dog bed in the corner, or personalized pet dishes in the kitchen.

However, pet owners need to remember, while pet ownership may not be surprising to some buyers, non-pet owners will be especially sensitive to lingering pet smells, and allergies may also be a concern.

When preparing your home for showings or an open house, you need to find a safe place for your pets to stay for the duration of the tours. Ask a friend or family member to pet-sit, or utilize a neighbourhood pet daycare facility! Most veterinary clinics also offer daytime boarding, too.

Although your dog or cat may be obedient and friendly with strangers, there’s always the chance of escape when the front door is opened. And not all people coming in and out of your home will be comfortable with pets. You need to make sure your home appeals to the largest demographic possible!  

Once your pet is safely out of the house, it’s time to clean! We get used to our pet’s personal fragrance and may not notice the smells that inevitably come along with sharing our homes with four-legged friends, but guaranteed, the general public will notice!

Dog giving paw to owner

To create the best possible impression, thoroughly clean all flooring and carpets, and vacuum and descent fabrics (including drapery, cushions and furniture). An essential oil blend spray works wonders.

An aromatherapy oil diffuser also does an amazing job to clear the air and add a pleasant, inviting scent. Bonus: it also adds some much-needed moisture to spaces in the drier months. Certain essential oil aromatherapy blends can also keep allergies at bay by purifying the air.

Allergies are an important consideration; many people are very sensitive to pet hair and dander, and nothing will turn a potential buyer off faster than a sneezing fit!

After cleaning, make sure to put away pet beds, accessories (leashes, collars, litter boxes, etc.), toys and bowls. Just like you would ‘depersonalize’ your home by restricting the amount of personal and family photos and objects lining your shelves, putting away your pet’s belongings allows the buyer of your home to easily picture their family in the space.

While knowing that a pet lives in the house may appeal to other pet owners (letting them know that the building or neighbourhood is pet friendly), again you’re trying to appeal to the largest group possible; it’s best to err on the side of caution and stick to neutrals, just like with your decor.

So, keep your pet-loving personality at the dog park, and make your home a blank canvas for potential buyers! Happy selling and good luck finding your new home!

Jill DeClavasio is a registered real estate sales representative specializing in the resale condo market downtown Toronto. Get in touch with her on Facebook!

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