What to Do With Pets During Showings: Home Seller Advice

What to do with Pets during Showings: Home Seller Advice

We love pets, and if you’re reading this, it seems like you do too. However, you also have a home show coming up and those two things don’t mix.

There’s a simple home-showing concept that explains this. Your number one goal when staging a home is to present a clean slate, not reminiscent of past owners. Pets, cute and friendly as they are, do the opposite. 

Luckily, there are plenty of ways to perfectly show a home, even if you have multiple pets. 

Showing your home should not include showing your pets - Photo via Canva

Why Do Realtors Suggest Removing Pets for Showings?

Let’s solidify a home showing concept: Put simply, the pets can’t be there. For a few hours, you must arrange a home away from home for your felines, canines, reptiles, or arachnids (especially the arachnids). 

From their owner’s perspective, pets symbolize a lot of wonderful things, like well-being, a sense of belonging, and friendship. 

From a potential buyer’s perspective, pets could indicate an unseen mess and a home with more wear and tear.

There’s always the chance that your buyers don’t mind pets and it doesn’t impact your sale negatively. However, taking this chance doesn’t make sense, so realtors will always suggest removing pets from a home before a showing. That goes for their toys, food bowls, toiletries, and other items. “As if they were never there” is the level of preparedness you should aim for.

Now we’ve covered the “why”, let’s talk about what to do with pets during home stages.

What Can You Do With Pets During Home Stagings?

Now we get to the useful info and share several ways to move your pets out during home showings.

We’ll arrange the options from the least to the most expensive.

Option 1: Take Your Pet on a Short Trip  

Most realtors recommend that the homeowners aren’t present for showings/stagings. This frees you up to take advantage of the least expensive option. 

Many homeowners choose to take their pets away for a few hours. This option is ideal for dogs since they are naturally happy outside of the house and easily amused by mundane activities. A drive to the local park, finishing with a stop at the cafe, maybe all the time you need.

Your dog may enjoy Option 1 the most (if you have time) - Photo via Canva

For cats and other pets, Option 1 might not be suitable. Being in cars for extended periods could be unhealthy for them and parks don’t offer any help. For cats and other critters, the next few options should work well.

Option 2: Ask Friends & Family

Perhaps neighbors, friends, or family members could offer a temporary retreat for your pets. For just a few hours, they may let you use their home, or at least a few rooms. You’ll find this easier if your pets are well-trained and less prone to “accidents”. 

With some supplies and a little preparation, you could set up an area for your pets. Spaces with less foot traffic will keep your pet calm, especially for cats. It’s best to only introduce them to smaller rooms at first, so they can grow accustomed to it slowly. A backyard is ideal for dogs, but not cats or other kinds of pets, which could become frightened and escape. 

Your goal is to keep your pets as comfortable as possible, and then return them home. To do this, pet-proof the rooms and check they are safe for your furry friends. 

Option 3: Use a Local Pet Hotel, Day Care, or Boarder

Pet hotels and boarding services are not extremely expensive, but could be the best choice for many home sellers. For an agreed hourly rate, your pet can stay with professionals and be taken care of. This includes food and water, plus a space to play or sleep. 

Whether the business is called a pet hotel, doggie daycare, or pet boarder, the services are essentially the same. However, boarding and hotel stays typically go overnight, while daycare is of course, just for the daytime.

Dog walking programs also give you enough time for a home showing, so you could connect with a local one. A typical walk could last upwards of 1 hour and cost $20, so you’d need to make sure it’s long enough and less costly than other options. 

An example of an average dog boarding service - Photo via Canva

How much is a daycare for a pet?

Daycare for dogs can cost as little as $30 for a half-day, which is probably all you need for a showing. It’s more difficult to find daycare services for cats, but far from impossible. If there isn’t a short-stay option in your local area, we recommend using a pet hotel and adjusting checkout times. 

How much are pet boarding services?

For boarding, you can expect to pay around $60 to $80 per night. This includes everything you could want for your pet, including climate control, a couple of exercise sessions, fresh bedding, and even cameras so you can check on your pets. That’s just the beginning though. These pet hotels usually have lots of add-ons and other ways to make boarding more comfortable. 

Option 4: Rent a Room 

Depending on where you live and what kind of pet you have, the other options may not have helped. In this case, there’s one more thing to do with pets during a home showing. 

If you browse local hotels, some will allow pets, but this will be the most costly option. Renting a hotel room for a few hours won’t be possible, so you’ll need to buy an entire night. Still, a pet-friendly hotel will give you exactly what you need. The climate is controlled, the space is clean, and you can keep your pet safe.

You can expect to pay over $100 for a pet-friendly hotel room in San Jose, California.

Are You Following Other Home Selling Best Practices?

We’ve already covered staging tips and ways to maximize sale potential, but homes are unique. If you need unique advice, The Jamison Team can help. With over a decade of experience buying and selling homes in Santa Clara County, CA, there’s no better-equipped agency to generate extra value from a sale. 

Start the discussion about your home sale today and ask us about the Guarantee we offer.

More Questions? Follow Up With Us!

If you have more questions about what to expect from the markets around the Bay Area, don’t be afraid to reach out to us today. Our experts are experienced in all property types and the entire San Francisco Bay Area, and we can help you to find what you need to know today.

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