The large majority of homes for sale in America have pets.  Whether they be cats, dogs, birds or hamsters, they live in the home, and preparing them for visits by potential buyers that they do not know, is an important issue in getting your Berkeley home prepared for a showing.

Because you and your family are familiar with their eccentricities like barking, jumping up, scratching, leaping about, etc., that does not mean that your potential visitors will like, or understand, that behavior when they come to visit your house.  While your animals may behave this way normally, many pets step up their problem behavior when new people come in. They may become nervous or anxious and act inappropriately--the exact opposite of the image that you want to present--that of a pleasant, welcoming home.


a. Recognize that your home may have an odor, especially if you have more than one cat or dog.  You may have gotten used to it.  Bring in a neighbor or friend who will kindly tell you the truth one way or another.

b. Start immediately to remove these odors.  This often takes a bit of time, so you want to make plans to get started on it right away.  Check with a pet store outlet as to the best type of cleaners that will remove odor and stains from the carpeting.  Consider investing a bit of money to get your carpet cleaned and refreshed.  It will make a huge difference in appearance and first impressions.

c. Scrub out all bowls, and wash all pet bedding on a regularly scheduled basis.  Wash them often.  Before a showing, put away the water and food that is normally set out.

d. Keep your floor litter free.  All pet balls, toys, scratching posts, and similar items should not be underfoot.  They are a walking hazard, and additionally, not attractive.

e. The last, and most obvious, is to remove the litter boxes before the showing.  They should be nowhere in site.  If they have to be kept in place, keep them fresh smelling, and litter free.

In summary, while you may love Spot or Fluffy, your future buyers may not want to visit them when they visit your home. 

Posted by Bruce Wagg on


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