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To stage or not to stage; that’s no longer a question if you want to sell your house quickly and for top dollar. According to the National Association of Realtors, a staged home sells 87 percent faster than a non-staged home, and for 17 percent more. When it comes to successful home staging, there are a few recommendations that may sound harsh toward certain family members, though — your four-legged ones, that is. Even though roughly 35 percent of American households share their home with a cat, realtors and home stagers recommend you create the illusion of not owning one when staging your home. The universal recommendation is that the more “petless” your home appears, the better.
Below are four home staging tips for cat owners in particular.
Removing Cat Odor
Cat odor is the first thing that needs to be addressed. You may not notice it, so you’ll need the opinion of someone neutral, like your realtor. They’ll be able to tell you where the problem areas are. Whether it’s your carpets or furniture, you can try eliminating the odors with a good pet odor eliminator, or you might need to remove the items from your home. Once you’ve thoroughly eliminated any offending odors, you may try replacing them with one of people’s favorite scents. Of course, you can never go wrong with the smell of freshly baked cookies either!
Get Rid of the Evidence
As harsh as it sounds, remove all evidence you own a cat. Remember, this is just a temporary means to sell your house more quickly. When you consider the median home sale price in Oak Park, CA, is $895,000, you’ll want to focus on getting the maximum price for your home. To achieve a “petless” appearance, take your food bowls, litter boxes, toys, etc. and place them out of sight. Potential buyers with allergies, fears, or dislikes do not want to see them.
When it comes to litter boxes, the best locations for them are in the basement or laundry/mudroom. Even there, have the entrance facing a wall. If you have to scoop it three times a day to keep it pristine, so be it. When your house is being shown, the best strategy is to completely hide your litter box, perhaps in your garage or in an outdoor shed.
Even cat owners don’t want to see your cat in their future home. It’s advised you remove photos of you and your fur baby. Yes, now would be a good time to take down your “Crazy Cat Lady” plaque. But what about your cat himself? Even if your cat typically goes into hiding in the presence of strangers, it’s best not to keep him at home during showings or an open house. Not only do you run the risk of breaking your cover, but your cat could escape through an open door. Besides, why subject your cat to the stress? You’re much better off putting your furry friend in a cat carrier (you can purchase a quality carrier on Amazon for $25.99) and taking him with you. Better yet, enlist the help of a caring cat sitter.
Cleaning and Repairs
Hire a professional cleaning service. This will set your baseline of cleanliness for when showing your home. In order to keep cat hair at bay, it’s recommended that you vacuum daily, including any furniture that your cat uses. Repair any damage your cat may have created. Check your door frames, floorboards, or even cabinets for scratches. If your cat has had too much fun with your blinds or curtains, they may need to be replaced.
Your Dream Home
The best way to keep your sanity during this time is to keep your eye on the prize — finding your dream home! You can review school and city reports, demographic information, and crime statistics online. You’ll also learn a lot by driving around and looking at houses. Visit neighborhood coffee shops and chat with locals.
As the French poet Jean Cocteau once said, “I love my cats because I enjoy my home; and little by little, they become its visible soul.” Soon, you and your cat(s) will be enjoying your new home together. Selling a home is always stressful, but with these home staging tips, you should be in your new happily ever after sooner vs. later!
About Jessica Brody
Jessica is a dog lover and creator of OurBestFriends.pet. She created the site to offer a place for animal lovers to share their favorite pet photos and stories about their furry pals. Jessica believes dogs are the best creatures on earth. She enjoys writing about and sharing photos of dogs (and other pets!) on her website.