The DOs and DON’Ts of selling your house when you have pets: McGrath Real Estate tips
By Amanda Scali

4/08/2016 12:00am

Should you ever have to consider selling your house when you have pets, it's important to realise having pets in the home is a lifestyle choice that can polarise, with people either enthusiastically in favour of it or vehemently against it.

If you are selling your home and fall in the first camp, DO be mindful of the prejudices and sensibilities of prospective buyers who fall in the second one.

Even some animal lovers baulk at the idea of inside dogs, while those with allergies to cats (which are twice as common as allergies to dogs;, 2016) have good reason to want feline-free environments.

What is cuter? Pets snuggled by the fire or a red hot selling price?

People who are averse to inside pets DON’T like:

  • their perception that the home is dirty
  • pet-related odour
  • moggie/doggie damage to the home

Let’s look at some of the ways McGrath Real Estate has found effective to minimise the negative impacts that house pets may have on the sale of a property.

Selling your house when you have pets without selling your soul

To counter the perception that a pet-occupied home is dirty, DO make all evidence of their presence vanish, at least for inspections and preferably for the entire sale period.

  • People really DON’T like pet hair on furniture—it looks untidy and sabotages the welcoming atmosphere you want to create.
  • Before you try to de-fur your upholstered furniture, DO make sure your floors are free of pet fur, or your results will be short-lived.
  • Vacuum carpets, paying attention to the edges and corners, and hard flooring, and use a rubber broom or squeegee to collect remaining fur; wash uncarpeted floors.
  • DO consider purchasing a robot vacuum cleaner to run daily so that your pets’ hair does not accumulate on your floors.
  • Vacuum upholstered furniture with a purpose-designed fitting, and then use a super-sticky lint roller or new, damp sponge to pick up residual fur.
  • To reduce further accumulation, DO cover your pets’ favourite spots with washable blankets—they’re easy to remove and de-fur in the clothes dryer after washing.
  • DON’T underestimate the deterrent nature of pet odour to buyers—you are probably used to the smell of your pets, but to non-pet owners, it can be a deal-breaker.
  • DO use your McGrath aromatherapy kit to help diminish this downside of having house pets; for other tips, see 3 things you should never have in your house when selling: McGrath Real Estate tips.

Who scratched our sale price?

Dogs and cats, particularly young ones, can inflict significant damage on a home.

If your cat has used your couch as a scratching post or your puppy has nibbled on the skirting boards, buyers will gain the impression that your home is uncared for.

DO repair, replace or disguise any pet-damaged items and protect them from further damage—good luck with that!

DON’T forget the yard, if Fido has been excavating, you’ll need to rectify the damage or risk creating a negative impression.

Your McGrath Real Estate agent can help you best present your pet-occupied home to appeal to buyers for whom that may otherwise have been a stumbling block.

We're here with our experience to help you 'fetch' the best price possible!