We all love our pets- dogs, cats or budgies, but our four legged friends create some unique circumstances to be aware of if you are trying to sell your property. Pets are not an asset during home and property showings and can create some unique circumstances when showing your home, that you may not even be aware of. Even those buyers that have pets of their own, don’t want to see evidence of your pets. Do the obvious and clean up after your pets around your house and yard. If you crate your pets or have a kennel, be aware that unsightly areas where you house them do not make a good impression on the nose or eyes.

Less obvious to you as the seller could be the odor your pets leave. You may not even be aware of it, but a prospective buyer is likely to be put off by any odor that your pet may leave behind. Your house could be immaculate, but your pet may still be “evident”! Consider having your ductwork cleaned as well as your carpets. Often scented candles or air fresheners aren’t sufficient!If you can, take your pets with you when your house is scheduled to be shown. No matter how much you love that friendly dog of yours, not everyone is delighted with your pet wanting to become acquainted with them! You want a buyer to be relaxed in your house and take their time. If your pet has the run of the house or the yard, prospective buyers may be discouraged from taking the time they need to really spend on your property. If they must be left at home during a showing, crate them or put them in a kennel. They may still be distracting, but they won’t be in the way. 

If you can, take your pets with you when your house is scheduled to be shown. No matter how much you love that friendly dog of yours, not everyone is delighted with your pet wanting to become acquainted with them! You want a buyer to be relaxed in your house and take their time. If your pet has the run of the house or the yard, prospective buyers may be discouraged from taking the time they need to really spend on your property. If they must be left at home during a showing, crate them or put them in a kennel. They may still be distracting, but they won’t be in the way. 

If you leave a pet inside, a cat for example, that is not supposed to be an outside cat, be aware that it may be challenging for the agent showing your property to keep track of your pet and be responsible for its safety. Put a sign on your door, on the inside and outside, to remind the agent and their clients that the pet is to remain in the house. 

If you have pet damaged to floors, carpet or window sills from scratches, consider some new paint or new finishing. We have a client who recently refinished his lovely flooring because he loved his four-legged companion who shared his house, but his custom hardwood oak and walnut floors did not. This client went to some expense to repair and refinish his beautiful home for the next buyer. 

Our office deals with horse and ranch properties as well as residential. Particularly on smaller horse properties, having good pasture management and being aware of having clean horse pens and tidy stalls, makes a difference to a buyer. Horse manure creates a fine dust when it dries either in pens or an arena and is best dealt with by cleaning up after your horses on a regular basis. Have a good disposal area for manure. Clients with pets are often looking for a

Clients with pets are often looking for a pet-friendly property, with good secure fencing and adequate yard space. Maybe one of the same reasons, you purchased the home. They just don’t need to be distracted by evidence your pet leaves and have to watch their step when viewing your house! No evidence of a pet is the best policy. 

Mary Ann Nicholas

Mary Ann Nicholas

Mary Ann Nicholas joined Beaverhead Home & Ranch Real Estate after a 25 year career in banking, focusing on commercial, agricultural and real estate lending in Southwest Montana. Her goal is for every client to receive an exceptional level of personal service and expertise during their real estate transaction regardless of size or complexity- from recreational to agriculture to a home on the range. Mary Ann has lived in Southwest Montana most of her life with interludes living coast to coast and border to border. A love of the Montana landscape gives her a sincere understanding of John Steinbeck's declaration: "I'm in love with Montana. For other states, I have admiration, respect, recognition even some affection. But with Montana it is love. And it's difficult to analyze love when you're in it." Mary Ann is an attorney, Chair of the University of Montana-Western Foundation and served as a two-term member of the Governor-appointed Local Executive Board of UMW. She and her daughters share an affinity for horses from rodeo to polo to reined cow horses. She invites you to visit her Montana blog at montanaunexpected.com, which she created with her sister out of a great love of place that is Montana.

Contact Mary Ann at mnicholas@beaverheadhomeandranch.com or direct at 406-660-0339.

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