Pets in the home?

As a person who started volunteering at the local animal shelter, I am keen to pets in the home. I remember a few years ago selling my home with four dogs, two cats and six birds! Oh, what a lesson I learned.

Next to cigarette smoke, cats and litter boxes are the worst first impressions for home buyers. Not just the odor of the litter box, but so many people are allergic to cats. So make sure that litter box stays clean and confine all pets during showings. I was once attacked by a cat on a stairwell during a showing! What an experience!

Birds? I found myself researching pets in the home and discovered that many people are scared of birds. I could not imagine anyone being afraid of little parakeets, but they are! An easy way to overcome this issue is to cover the cage(s) for home showings.

For you reptile lovers, the game is on! Those snakes and Iguanas will keep a buyer from entering a room totally. So moving the cages to a less used space or a space where buyers would not spend much time in while viewing the home is a great idea.

Of course the most popular pet is “Fido “, the family dog. We all know “Fido” comes in all shapes and sizes, and many families have more than one. The smaller dogs can be harder to get along with, than the larger breeds. We all love the small dogs, but some will have the “Napoleon Complex”, and we all know that they will bite! The larger breeds can be so much calmer, but sometimes, even they, can be very territorial. Having complete strangers come into their home when their people are away, is stressful for dogs. Dogs should be crated, removed from the home or taken for a walk. One of my recent clients would take her dog for a ride in the car. Poor Ebby just did not care for car rides.

The moral of the story is to price your home right. Issues such as these, are only a few, that help you realize you want to price your home to sell. Pricing a home right, typically, gets your home sold faster and in the long run, makes you more money. Analyze the active, pending and sold comparable homes. Make sure you have the price right and that the family pet(s) are not traumatized any more than they have to be. That also includes you too as a homeowner!

Robert Dawson, Broker, LAR President is the owner of Dawson Ford Garbee & Co and the board president for the Lynchburg Association of Realtors.

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