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Duke Warner Realty

Pets and Home Showings – Best Practices

Bend Home Showing - Best Practices

Getting your home ready to list is stressful for everyone, and pets can sense this tension. Cleaning, organizing, and moving furniture can be very concerning to our pets. Then to top it all off, we invite strangers to parade through while we are not even home. This creates new smells and unfamiliar anxiety for many household pets, with the exception of maybe a fish or hamster. But if you own a dog or a cat, you know how particular they can be to routine, and there are some things you should consider first.

Real estate agents will typically request that you remove your pets from the home completely during showings. This is not only for the safety of the people entering your home but also to prevent unnecessary stress for your pets. They are the kings of their castle and can react in ways that might surprise you. Many people will say their pets are friendly and won’t be a problem, and it’s probably true that their pet has never done anything strange before. However, this may be a new kind of stress your pet hasn’t experienced before, and it tends to be more serious than people realize. Ask a real estate agent, and they can tell you at least one horror story about a pet during a showing.

Some people are lucky enough to have friends or family who can take their pets for a few days or possibly even weeks while their home is listed on the market. However, for those without that option – boarding facilities may be a good idea. You can also ask for notice before showings and take your pets with you for a drive or short walk. This gives your pet something to look forward to during showings and may help ease the tension during this time overall.

A last resort would be to kennel animals in a room during showings. This protects the people viewing your property but can cause a lot of added stress to your pets. They know a stranger is in their home, and they can’t even greet or analyze them. In this case, it’s always important to add notes to your listing about the pets, where they will be located, and ask that the people viewing your home do not approach them or let them out. Another benefit to this option is that you prevent your animal from accidentally getting out while well-intentioned clients leave doors open left and right. You can ask that they close all doors behind them, but it’s not uncommon that agents and clients don’t read the listing notes. Obviously, that is not your fault – but you should do whatever you can to protect yourself and your pets against any unintended negligence.

Lastly, a lot of people have allergies to pets. Removing the pets before showings and cleaning thoroughly can be very beneficial to the value of your home. Cigarette and pet smells are two of the biggest red flags for buyers. Most of us can’t smell our own pets, but buyers can. When people are buying a house, they tend to be ultra-critical of things like this. Keeping your home clean and free of odors and pet hair will increase the appeal and value of your home. The goal is to present the home beautifully so that it sells quickly and for top dollar. If you can do this while keeping your pets and potential buyers happy, then everybody wins!