If you’re like many people, you know that selling a house with indoor cats will probably require you to get creative. Unless you plan on sending your four-legged family members to stay with grandma until you’ve sealed the deal, here’s what you need to know.
7 Tips for Selling a House With Indoor Cats
Selling your home in Scottsdale is a big deal – and your REALTOR® has probably already talked to you about staging, pricing your home properly and everything else that comes into play while your home is on the market.
If you have indoor cats, you’re in good company. About 32 million households in America have them, too – and that means there’s plenty of advice available on selling a home safely (and more easily) when you have cats. Check out these seven tips from the pros:
- Prepare your house accordingly
- Make a plan for showings
- Empty the litter box again (and again)
- Keep your cat calm
- Remove cat paraphernalia
- Spring for grooming (maybe)
- Crate your cat
Here’s a closer look at each.
Selling a House With Indoor Cats, Tip #1: Prepare your house accordingly
Prepping your house to sell is essential. You’ll need to deep-clean every room, just as you would if you didn’t have any pets – and you’ll also need to repair any damage that your cat may have caused. Look for scratch marks on doors, corners, trim and corners of carpet.
It’s also important to note that even if you can’t smell your cats, other people may be able to. You’ll want to neutralize all odors, then call your REALTOR or a close friend to come over. Ask your guest to see if your house passes the sniff test.
Selling a House With Indoor Cats, Tip #2: Make a plan for showings
The safest option for your cat is to leave with you when someone is coming to see your home – but more on that later. You’ll also want to:
- Take the litterbox with you when you leave
- Clean everything in your home daily to stay on top of the fur and cat litter
- Have a plan for what you’ll do with your cat if a surprise showing pops up
Selling a House With Indoor Cats, Tip #3: Empty the litter box again (and again)
Litter box odors are major turn-offs for buyers – even those who have cats themselves. Make sure you clean the litter box every day, and if necessary, upgrade your cat litter. You may also consider covering your litterbox with a hood to help keep dust and odors at bay.
Selling a House With Indoor Cats, Tip #4: Keep your cat calm
Cats pick up on our stress, so try to keep your four-legged family member calm by remaining that way yourself. Even if you’re flying through the house prepping for a last-minute showing, you should crate your cat (see tip #7 for more on that) before you do anything else.
Selling a House With Indoor Cats, Tip #5: Remove cat paraphernalia
Pick up all the cat toys, beds, scratching posts and the litter box before showings. Prospective buyers generally don’t want to think about your pets; in fact, they don’t even want to think about you. They’re just there to judge whether your home is a good fit for them. Removing all the cat paraphernalia serves another purpose, too: They won’t be distracted by “what-ifs,” such as:
- “What if the cat urinated somewhere in the house and they’re covering it up?”
- “What if I find hairballs on top of the cabinets or the vents are clogged with hair?”
- “What if the cat has done some damage that I won’t discover until after I move in?”
Selling a House With Indoor Cats, Tip #6: Spring for grooming (maybe)
Brush your cat – if she’ll let you – or take your cat to the groomer so you can minimize the amount of hair you have to clean up around the house.
Selling a House With Indoor Cats, Tip #7: Crate your cat
You should – in almost all circumstances – crate your cat before showings. It’s true that he or she may hide from people who are coming to see your house, but you won’t be there to supervise, and it’s best to keep your cat (and your prospective buyers) safe. Your best bet is to put your cat in a crate and take the crate with you when you leave.
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