written by Elyse Berman, CRS
Boca Raton, FL
Living with our furry friends, we tend not to notice pet odors on a day-to-day basis. Smell, what smell? But, if you are thinking of selling your home, you can be sure someone will smell it. They may be allergic, or they’ll just smell it. Whatever the reason, don’t give them a reason. Deal with it up front before you list your home for sale.
As a dog owner and lover, I speak from the heart. We adore our pets, but everyone may not feel the same way. And when selling your home, you have to appreciate and take that into consideration. The time is now.
First, air your home out. Open the windows; run your air conditioner. Get the air circulating. If possible, add a HEPA filter to your air conditioner. And make sure you are changing your filters at a minimum of once a month.
Clean your carpets and rugs. Professionally, if possible. Then keep it up. Vacuum everywhere – not just floors but the upholstery, too. Some vacuums take a HEPA filter. If yours can, add it. Don’t forget to vacuum sofas, pet beds, blankets, etc. I have found a carpet rake to be a huge help. You won’t believe how much fur it picks up! I use Fizzion for spot cleaning carpets, others prefer baking soda. There are many products on the market for spot cleaning. Whichever one you use, use it!
Vinegar and water works wonders. Not only is it safe for your cats and dogs, the smell of vinegar is gone in minutes. I don’t like to use chemicals around my dogs, so vinegar and water for floors does the trick (after vacuuming, of course!)
Fabrics absorb odors, so clean the upholstery. This includes your blankets (if your pets sleep in bed), rugs, drapes, stuffed animal-type dog toys if you have them, crate pads, etc. You get my drift. Toss them in the wash and dryer. Another great idea is to use sticky rollers to remove dog fur prior to washing. They work well and prevent a lot of fur from getting into your machines.
Consider painting your house. If it needs it anyway, great. But, a fresh coat of paint can do wonders for not only pet odors but the overall look of your home. It will look clean and fresh and help to rid pet odors.
If you use pee pads, that’s fine, but change them often – very often – when selling your home. Same thing goes for the litter box. Clean it more than normal and put it away, perhaps in the garage, during showings.
Bathe your dogs regularly, especially during this time. And brush them because you won’t believe what comes out of our furry friends!
First impressions are important. The old saying, “you don’t get a second chance to make a first impression” rings true. Make sure the first impression potential buyers get of your home is not the smell of pets!