How to Sell a Home with Pets
St. Louis residents love their furry friends just as much as the rest of the country! According to the American Veterinary Medical Association, there are around 70 million dogs and 74 million cats in the United States. Many other households in St. Louis also have a range of other pets, including hamsters, fish, birds, reptiles, and even exotic animals. However, when it comes to selling a home in St. Louis with pets, it can be a bit trickier. While you may see your pets as an integral part of your family, potential buyers may not feel the same way.
It's important to remember that buyers want to be able to envision themselves living in the space, which means any evidence that a pet lives in the home should be well hidden. Messy backyards or the scent of a dirty litter box can be enough to turn off a potential buyer during a showing. But don't worry - selling a pet-friendly home in Missouri doesn't have to be stressful. By following a few simple steps, you can ensure a successful sale. Today we will share some tips for selling your pet-friendly home in St. Louis, so let's get started!
Considerations for Home Showings
When it comes time to sell your home, you'll probably have to show it to potential buyers. If you have pets, it's important to think about how to manage their presence during these showings. Here are the top things to consider:
Consider Your Pets Needs
When you're getting ready to put your home on the market, it's important to consider the impact the process may have on your pets. The changes and disruptions to their routine and the presence of unfamiliar people and smells can be stressful for some animals. If your pet is prone to anxiety or stress during times of change, you may want to discuss potential coping strategies with your veterinarian. Keep in mind that every pet is unique and may react differently to selling a home, so it's important to consider your pet's needs as you prepare to list your property.
Always Remove Your Pets if Possible
While you may love your pets and consider them a valued member of the family, it's important to consider the potential drawbacks of having them present during a home showing. Even the most well-behaved pets may become agitated or aggressive when faced with unfamiliar faces and unfamiliar surroundings. If your pets are left alone during the showing, this can exacerbate the issue. Additionally, it's worth noting that some homeowners insurance policies may not provide coverage for dog bites, so it's worth taking extra precautions if you're concerned about this possibility.
If you want to make your home as appealing as possible to potential buyers, it might be a good idea to consider temporarily relocating your pets during showings. Not only could the presence of pets potentially agitate or frighten some individuals, but it's also worth considering that some potential buyers may have allergies to animals. Creating a pet-free environment during showings can help ensure that all interested parties feel welcome and comfortable as they tour your home. This, in turn, can increase the chances of a successful sale.
What If You Can't Remove the Pet?
If you find yourself in a situation where you are unable to make arrangements for your pets to be elsewhere during a home showing, there are a few steps you can take to ensure the safety and well-being of both your pets and visitors.
One option is to keep your pets in a cage or kennel and leave a clear note instructing visitors not to disturb them. Alternatively, you could leave a cage or kennel with your agent, along with some treats, in case they need to temporarily contain your pets during the showing. It's important to remember that it is never a good idea to try to hide your pets, as potential buyers may want to see every part of your home, including storage and laundry areas.
Recommendations for Selling a Pet-Friendly Home
In addition to preparing for showings, you can do a few other things to make your home more appealing to potential buyers when you have pets. Some tips to consider include the following:
Remove Evidence of Pets
To create the impression that your home is free of pets for potential buyers, it's important to take a thorough and comprehensive approach to staging. Simply hiding your pet's belongings in a closet or other out-of-sight location may not be enough, as buyers are likely to look everywhere during a tour. To truly create a pet-free atmosphere, it may be necessary to pack and remove all pet-related items, including:
- Pet Dishes and Food
- Kennels, Crates, and Pet Beds
- Cat scratching posts and houses
- Photos of your pets
It may be wise to consider replacing a pet door when preparing a home for sale. While convenient for pets, a pet door may not be appealing to potential buyers who do not own pets or who have security concerns. Consider more discreet options that blend in with the home's design to maintain the aesthetic appeal and attract a wider range of buyers.
Repair Damage Caused by Pets
As a homeowner, it's easy to become accustomed to the small imperfections and damages caused by your pets over time. However, it's important to keep in mind that potential buyers will view your home with a critical eye and may be more likely to notice these blemishes. To ensure that your home presents itself in the best possible light, it may be a good idea to address any damages caused by your pets before listing. Some repairs to consider could include the following:
Inside Your Home
- Ripped or tattered curtains
- Soiled or damaged carpets
- Damage from chewing or scratching on walls, window sills, doors, and baseboards
- Worn or damaged furniture, including scratches, tears, or stains
- Scuff marks or scratches on the flooring
Outside Your Home
- Torn or damaged window screens
- Accumulated pet waste, such as droppings or urine
- Damage to fencing or gates
- Overgrown or trampled grass or bushes
- Visible signs of digging or other lawn damage
Pet-Free Marketing is a Must
Presenting your home in the best possible light when preparing for a showing or taking real estate photos is important. This means removing any evidence of pets and avoiding showcasing pet-related damages. Remember that these photos will be used in a variety of marketing materials, such as your MLS listing or on websites like Zillow, so it's essential to present your home in a clean and well-maintained state.
Deodorize and Deep Clean Your House
When it comes to selling a pet-friendly home, it's important to go the extra mile to ensure that the property is thoroughly cleaned and deodorized. This is because, even if you love your pets and consider them a vital part of your family, potential buyers may not share your sentiment. To make a good impression and increase the appeal of your home to a wide range of buyers, consider giving the property a deep clean and deodorization.
This may involve vacuuming and washing all surfaces and floors and paying extra attention to areas where your pets spend the most time. To truly eliminate any lingering pet odors, you may also want to consider using specialized deodorizing products or hiring a professional cleaning service.
Don't Market Your Home as Pet Friendly
Avoid advertising your home as pet-friendly, except for permanent structures that cannot be removed. While certain pet-friendly features may appeal to pet owners, they may not be relevant or desirable to all buyers. Focus on the overall features and amenities of the property.
Ultimately, selling a home with pets can be a bit more challenging than selling a pet-free home, but with the right approach, it is possible to successfully market your property while ensuring the safety and well-being of your furry friends. Careful preparation and planning are key to minimizing potential distractions or issues and presenting your home in the best possible light to potential buyers. By following the tips and guidance outlined in this article, you can effectively market your home while keeping your pets safe and secure and increasing the chances of a successful sale.
At the Chad Wilson Group in the Greater St. Louis Metro Area, we understand that your pets are more than just animals - they are a crucial part of your family. That's why we are committed to supporting you and your furry friends during the process of selling your home. From helping you prepare your home for showings to finding temporary accommodations for your pets and answering any questions you may have about how to effectively market your pet-friendly property, our team is here to assist. We believe that by taking the extra steps to prioritize the well-being of your pets, we can help make the sale of your home a seamless and stress-free experience for you and your loved ones. Contact us today to learn more about how we can help you and your pets navigate the process of selling your home.