Selling a Home with Pets in Connecticut: 3 Things to Consider

by Oct 11, 2022Cats, Connecticut, Dogs, Local0 comments

Selling a house is naturally stressful for everyone. Prepping it for showings, leaving for showings, stressing about whether someone will make an offer… It’s even MORE stressful when there are pets involved! Jessica, our President and Head Trainer, has four dogs and a cat of her own and is going through this process and she’s learned A LOT! Check out what she feels are the three most important things to consider when selling a home with pets in Connecticut!

1. You’re Probably Nose Blind

Dogs, cats and all animals have unique smells. This is unavoidable as it naturally occurs from oils on the skin and fur, not to mention dog drool, litter box smells, and accidents if you’re still housebreaking or have an incontinent pup. Your house likely reflects some of these smells and you don’t even know it!

Becoming “nose blind” isn’t as serious as it sounds – you don’t lose your ability to smell! It does mean that you do not notice certain smells. This often occurs in places you frequent often. For example, a smoker may not be able to detect the smell on their clothes or in their car. For pet owners, this may mean your house smells like your furry best friend and you can’t tell!

Not sure if you’re nose blind? Have a trusted friend (…you know, the one who will be honest and upfront with you) or your realtor stop by before showings to give you their opinions.

Did they find a smell? Not to fret. There are a few things you can to do help!

  • Deep Clean. This one’s pretty obvious but dust, vacuum, sweep, mop… Not only will it help with the smell but it’ll make your home shine!
  • Do your pet laundry. Does your dog or cat have blankets or a bed? Give it a good wash. Anywhere your pets spend a lot of time will be more likely to hold their smell.
  • Clean enclosures, crates and litter boxes. If you have a cat or a small animal like a guinea pig, hamster or bird, ensure cages and litter boxes are clean and tidy. Sprinkling baking soda on the top of your cats’ litter box is a safe way to help cut down on smell. Wiping out crates can help remove any pet dander that may be sitting.
  • Grab the coffee. Our favorite local, dog-loving realtor Sarah Perrotti recommends getting cheap coffee and poking holes in the lid. Coffee contains nitrogen which naturally absorbs odors. Just be sure to keep it out of pets’ reach! Amazon also sells odor removing products that might be a good fit for your family. We really like these Fresh Wave Odor Removing Gels!

 

2. Come Up With a “Show Time” Game Plan

Pets in an enclosure can typically stay for showings. This might be a fish tank or a guinea pig. Cats should be discussed with your realtor. Dogs, however, should absolutely leave with you. But what to do?

If it’s a quick showing, pack everyone up in the car and go for a nice drive. A showing or two won’t take very long and you can be back in no time.

If you have a number of back-to-back showings, an open house or a full day of sporadic showings, this might be a little harder! You can consider…

  • Going for a hike or walk (easy for a dog or two, harder for those with 3+!)
  • Visiting a friend or family member (with permission to bring the pups, of course!)
  • Bringing them to doggy day care of boarding for a day
  • Having a friend or pet sitter watch them in their home
  • Taking them on a dog-friendly day trip or weekend get away
  • Hire your dog walker to take them out for you! Grab lunch with your family and we’ll take the dogs on a nice long walk.

What you choose to do with your dog during this time should take your pet’s personality into consideration. If going in the car is likely to be a high-stress situation for them, discuss the option of medication with your veterinarian. You can also consider hiring a trainer to help set your pet up for success by teaching you how to set up practice runs and encourage relaxed behavior!

 

Four dogs sit in blue car

Jess packed her dogs Owl, Rocco, River and Luna up for showings!

If you only have a cat, or several cats, discuss options with your realtor. To avoid stressing out her cat, Nala, Jess chose to pack up her dogs and leave Nala at the house. Her realtor made a note to alert anyone viewing the house a cat is present (for allergy purposes) and to ensure nobody lets her outside! (If your cat tends to try and door dash, this may not be the best option for you!)

 

3. Be Mindful of Pet “Messes”

Not everybody is an animal lover (…we know, it baffles us, too!). This is super important to keep in mind when prepping your home for listing and showings. While you don’t mind your dog’s bowls kicking around the kitchen floor between meals or a tumble weed of dog hair in the corner may be an everyday occurrence for you, potential buyers may not feel the same way.

When preparing for showings, create a list of pet “stuff” to pick up and watch for before you leave the house. Jess’s list includes..

  1. Picking up dog bowls and moving out of sight
  2. Breaking down crates and moving out of sight
  3. Cleaning the litter box
  4. Picking up dog poop in the back yard
  5. Neatly putting away any pet toys
  6. Vacuuming everything! You’ll never get all of their hair but we can sure try!
  7. Using pet Febreeze on furniture… just in case
  8. Cleaning windows and doors wet noses can come in contact with
  9. Washing trim and doors – you’ll be surprised how much dirt and how many nose prints they can leave!
  10. Wash any pet blankets or crate mats
  11. Mopping floors for every showing to get rid of any pet prints

 

Selling a Home with Pets is Possible!

Selling and buying houses is stressful. Moving is stressful. Selling a home with pets involved is SUPER stressful! Fortunately, there are things you can do to plan for before and during the sale process to make your house as appealing as possible… even to those who don’t appreciate Fluffy and Fido like we do!

Addressing any smells (whether pet-related or not), focusing on the areas of your home that get touched by your pets and having a game plan BEFORE showing will help reduce the stress on everyone involved! Finding a realtor who has pets of their own and understands how important they are to you and your selling or buying plan can be a huge help!

If you looking to move to town or need help handling your pets during showings, our dog walking, pet sitting and dog training services may be a great fit for your family! To learn how RCO Pet Care can help you with your pet care needs, contact us or call us at (203) 641-2428. We are proud to service Middlebury, Naugatuck, Oxford, Prospect, Southbury, Thomaston, Waterbury, Watertown, CT and Woodbury, CT. If you’re outside of our service area, we’re happy to help you find a reputable, professional pet care provider. We’ve got your tail!

Jessica
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