Home Sellers, Cats, Pets

-4 Tips for Tampa Home Sellers with Pets-

Selling a Tampa Bay area home with the help of a real estate professional can be a simple and streamlined transaction, but home sellers with pets have a few extra steps to take for the showing process.  Interested buyers will be walking through and inspecting your home.  The last thing home sellers want is to lose a sale over an easy fix, such as pet damage or odors.

Pets and Preparing a Home for Sale

As fellow pet parents, we are providing home sellers this list of tips for preparing for a home sale, while keeping your pets happy during the process.  These suggestions are also helpful for any pet owner wanting to maintain a clean and pristine home.

  1. Eliminate Odors and Keep Clean: Quickly cleaning up accidents and messes is the key to preventing odors from building up in your home. Products featuring bio-enzymes and other odor-removal ingredients are useful for feces, vomit, or urine.  Once spot treatment is complete, give your entire home a deep clean to eliminate any lingering smells.  In addition, be sure to keep Kitty’s litter box clean.  We suggest removing litter boxes before showings. No one wants to see (or smell) a litter box when browsing bathrooms, bedrooms, family rooms, and other areas of the home. Also, keep the yard clean by removing any waste left behind by Fido.  Home sellers may invest in a pooper-scooper, baggies, and a trashcan with a tight lid for storing waste until trash day.
  2. Groom to Maintain Cleanliness: Housetraining and bathing are crucial steps in keeping your home free of odors and smells during the sales process. We often refer customers to veterinary support, books, and articles for litter-box training for cats and outdoor training for dogs. In addition, depending on your pet’s breed, monthly or sometimes weekly bathing may be suggested for maintaining a healthy coat along with a clean home. Be sure to also keep your pet’s nails trimmed during the sales process to prevent new scratches or snags. Consult with your groomer or veterinary tech for instructions on how to trim your pet’s nails.
  3. Repair any Pet Damage: In addition to the general layout and structure of your home, interested buyers will be inspecting flooring, walls, windows, doors, and even making judgements based on the condition of your furniture.  Use stain-removal sprays and fabric-specific sprays to spot treat areas. To lift a stain, blot and DO NOT rub.  For carpet snags, you may try a quick fix by cutting a snag down low with a pair of scissors, or use a knitting needle, fondue fork, or screwdriver to pull up the loop that is most closely beside the snagged loop; in turn, you pull down the snag when pulling up the loop beside it.  To cover or blend scratches on hardwood floors, look for filler sticks and color-marker tools.
  4. Remove Signs of Pets during Showings: Put away any food bowls, pet beds, and toys during active showings to eliminate odors and clutter. Some situations may permit a pet to stay in closed off area of a home, but it is generally best to take your pet to a different location during showings.  Bring along any necessary food, treats, medications, toys, bedding, leashes, and litter boxes. The Tampa Bay area offers plenty of destinations for pet owners – such as a scenic car ride, a romp at a local dog park, a meal at a dog-friendly café, a visit to a friend’s home, or a few hours at doggie day care.  While it is best to try to accommodate as many showings as possible, remember that sellers always have final approval of showing times. If Fido can’t be moved, or the home is simply not presentable during a requested showing time, then ask if there is a different time that may be more convenient.
In addition to home selling, we would be happy to help you find a new home to enjoy with your beloved cats and dogs. Call Dick and Karla Nielsen today at 813-294-5786 for more information.