Last week, we posted an article about finding the perfect home if you are a pet owner, but what if you are selling your Chicago home and you have pets? While we all love our furry friends, they can cause damage that may be off-putting to others. Here are a few tips that homeowners can follow to make your home appealing to potential buyers, even if you have pets.
Scoop up the poop: Make sure that all the waste in the yard has been picked up. If your potential buyer doesn’t have a dog, the last thing you want is for them to go into your beautiful backyard and step in poop.
Buried dog toys: Homeowners with dogs know that they like to dig up the yard and bury a few bones. Make sure to have all the holes filled prior to showing your home. The best way to ensure that you haven’t missed any is to start on the outside of your yard and walk in a circle towards the center.
Repair the fence: If you have a porch or fence, check for any signs of chewing or scratch marks. Depending on the extent of the damage, you might be able to repair it yourself. Otherwise, call your local handy man to help you out.
Remember not to neglect your yard because it’s just as important as the inside of the house for many potential buyers.
Hide the evidence: Go through each room in your house and pick up all the pet toys, beds, and litter boxes and place them out of site. Some realtors even suggest putting away pictures of your furry friend.
The next step is to remove any pet odors. Make sure cat litter boxes are hidden away in an area that potential buyers aren’t likely to see them. Dogs can also leave odors behind. Unfortunately, we become accustomed to the smells in our own house, so ask a neighbor or friend to come in and do a sniff test. There are many effective ways to remove your pets’ odors. Click here for some great examples from Pinterest.
Relocate Temporarily: This might not be a realistic option for everyone, but if you are able to, have someone else watch your pet while you are selling your home. If your pet isn’t present, it will make it easier to keep your home clean and prepared for any unexpected showings.
During showings, remove your pet: If you don’t have anyone to watch your pet, find some way to get your four-legged friend out of the house during showings. Go for a walk, take a drive around your Chicago neighborhood, or go to the pet store. If none of those options work, then you might need to invest in a crate or pen for your pet to stay in during a showing. This is friendlier for your pet, as strangers and crowds can cause many animals stress. You also don’t want to be held responsible if a potential buyer gets bitten or scratched. Not only will this leave a bad impression, you might lose the sale and it can be a huge liability. Be sure to let buyers and real estate agents know ahead of time that there is a pet in the house.
You adore your pet, but not everyone is used to animals. Keep in mind that your potential buyer may not be a pet lover, and you don’t want to risk losing the sale. Getting ready to place your home on the market doesn’t have to be stressful if you own a pet. Follow some of these tips and the process will go smoothly.
Do you have any tips to help get your home ready for showing when you have pets?
For more information on real estate in Chicago go to www.chicagorealestateforum.com.