If you’re a pet owner, it’s probably hard to imagine. But not every homebuyer is going to love you’re furry friends as much as you do.
It doesn’t matter how often you clean. It doesn’t matter how well-behaved your cats or dogs are. Some buyers are going to be turned off by the sight of your pets, and any signs that they live in your home.
The good news is, your buyer pool doesn’t have to shrink just because you’re selling a home with pets. Here, I’ll share some simple tips for cat and dog owners who want to impress every seller who walks through the door—whether they love animals or not.
Out of sight, out of mind
Do you have a place for your pets to stay when your home is being shown? If not, find one. Even the quietest animal can repel some buyers—or pose an unnecessary distraction.
Start by tapping your social networks to find a fellow animal lover who might be up for some pet-sitting. If you can’t find anyone, never fear! There’s no shortage of safe and comfortable boarding options in Toronto. Here are a few that I’ve heard pet owners rave about:
Located downtown, Paws Playground offers individual dog suites and a private, 10,000 square foot park—all at a cost of $60 for 24 hours.
Toronto Dog Boarding
In a 3,500 square-foot house in Corktown, you’ll find Toronto Dog Boarding. Your dog can stay in this cushy pad for $55-$60 per night.
Animal Haus is a luxurious, open-concept pet hotel. Nightly rates are in the $60-$70 range.
My Petropolis is an Etobicoke pet boutique offering private rooms for dogs ($45-55 per night) and cats ($20 per night).
Looking for a relaxed, cats-only space? Check out Cat’s Castle in Oakville. Prices range from $27-$49 per day.
Keeping it clean
Once your pets are out of the house, it’s time for a cleanliness inspection. You wouldn’t believe how many buyers have told me that pet-related stains, odours, and shedding are some of their biggest turn offs. Here’s how to tackle these problems:
For many Toronto pet owners, spring weather means fresh mud and grass stains. To remove these stains from your carpets and upholstery, try Good Housekeeping’s remedy. Mix one Tbsp of liquid hand dishwashing detergent with two cups of warm water, then blot.
For any older pet-related stains (including those from past accidents), try a heavy-duty stain remover. Rocco & Roxie Supply Co. makes an amazing one, and Nature’s Miracle works wonders. A soft-bristle brush can also help.
Why is it that we stop noticing pet odours in our own homes? To find unpleasant smells, you’ll probably have to do some investigating. Perform a sniff test on the surfaces your pets uses most often. If you notice any unpleasant smells, spray them with a pet-odour remover. Most stain removers act as two-in-one solutions, so you can use products like Nature’s Miracle to deodourize while you clean.
I also have friends who swear by a less-expensive, DIY solution: 1 tbsp of white vinegar mixed with 2 cups of water. Use a spray bottle to spritz the offending surfaces, then wait for odours to disappear.
If you’re selling a home with pets, check your furniture and carpets for animal hair. Remember: your vacuum and lint brush are your best friends.
Stage with a pet-free mindset
Last but not least, remember to remove all traces of your pets from areas that will be visible during home showings. Beds, food bowls, toys—it should all be packed away when homebuyers are scoping out your home.
Find a storage space that’s out of sight. Pack pet-related items in a container with a lid before putting them in a closet.
Trust me, the prep work is worth it. By creating an animal-free environment, you can avoid the headaches that come with selling a home with pet.
Have questions about selling your home—with or without pets? Let’s grab a coffee and talk about it!