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Home sellers: don’t leave your pet at home during an open house

dog in bed during open houseAs an animal lover, I can relate to home sellers who want to leave their pet at home during an open house. However, it’s not a good idea for your pet or for potential buyers. As an accomplished real estate agent in Santa Barbara, Hope Ranch, Montecito and the surrounding communities, I always counsel my clients to find a safe and secure place for their critters during an open house.
Having strangers in the house can make dogs and cats feel anxious. Even if your pet is good with strangers, they can be distracting. To make matters worse, if your dog is a barker or jumper, that can really turn potential buyers away. Then there’s the smell. A nasty cat litter smell is a real turn off.
Send Your Pet on Vacation
Buyers need to be able to imagine living in your home, so don’t let your pets keep them from that vision. Some buyers might even be allergic. Remember, open houses can be crowded and noisy, which is why I say try and find a safe haven for your pets if possible, for the pet’s sake.
It’s not just dogs and cats either. Hamsters, guinea pigs, mice and ferrets are popular pets for children, but they can add a smell to your home. It’s okay to leave your fish but just imagine your talking bird mimicking the conversation between your agent and a buyer. Even in a secure cage, snakes and iguanas can frighten potential buyers.
Talk to your real estate agent about what to do with your pets during an open house. If you are considering putting your house on the market or looking for a new home in and around Montecito, please call me at 805.886.9378 or email me at To get an idea of what’s on the market today, please visit my comprehensive website.

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