SHARING AND SELLING A HOME WITH PETS

According to a report by the National Association of Realtors, 61 percent of U.S. households either have a pet or are planning on getting one. Of those who do have a furry companion, 99 percent feel that Fido is indeed a member of the family. Whether you fall into the category of current or future pet owner, here are some household tips to make your life with an animal friend easier as well as advice on what to do when it's time to sell your home.

Pet-Proofing Your Property

  • Designate a space. Get creative. Turn your balcony into a puppy sanctuary, use the space under your stairs for a pet nook or convert a piece of furniture into a cozy hideout.
  • Set up a food station. Tired of your animal companion scattering kibble across the floor? Build a feeding station from an old wooden crate or add a pull-out drawer to your kitchen island.
  • Install pet-friendly floors. Over time, canine paws can wreak havoc on certain types of flooring. Invest in sturdy options such as ceramic tiles, vinyl or linoleum.

Selling a Home When You Have a Pet

  • Undo the damage. Buff out floor scratches and treat any carpet or furniture stains. Have lingering odors? You can eliminate them with enzyme cleaners.
  • Remove the evidence. Pack away cat trees, toys, crates and food bowls. Vacuum regularly to remove fur, and take down your puppy's first bath photos from the fridge.
  • Relocate your furry loved ones. While your home's on the market, it might be a good idea to give your pet a mini vacation. Let a friend take care of Fluffy, or board Spot at the kennel. Having your pets away while you're showing your place will relieve tension for both you and potential buyers.