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Ideas on how to make residence smell buyer-ready

Real Estate Report
By Lauren Bunting | Nov 30, 2017

(Dec. 1, 2017) Smells are an important factor when listing your home for sale, right up there with the visual presentation of a home. Top smells to check for are: garbage, pet smells, mold, body odor and tobacco.

When you have your home listed for sale, take out the trash more frequently and don’t put the smelliest food culprits in the garbage can at all. When you take out your garbage, check the garbage can with a quick sniff to make sure any foul odors aren’t left behind before putting in a new bag.

Cleaning out the garbage can with some bleach or 409 will help to alleviate any lingering trash smells.

Body odor is another culprit, and a hard one to realize is lingering in the air within any given room. But the bedroom is a place where you should focus on keeping extra clean by laundering your sheets regularly.

Be sure to wash comforters and pillow shams as well. Keeping up on the dirty laundry is also important to keep foul odors at bay. And, don’t forget the shoes in your closets—placing dryer sheets in your shoes or buying odor eater powder to sprinkle in them is a good idea. Spraying Febreze on upholstery and sprinkling carpet powder on area rugs and carpet can also help keep the air fresh.

In our area, mustiness can also be a problem for how houses smell on the first impression when they’ve been closed up for a long time. Airing out the house by opening up the windows will help to offset the musty smell, as well as using some air fresheners.

If the smell is really strong, you may want to have your crawl space checked for any organic growth and to make sure there is a good vapor barrier between the ground and the crawl space.

The last two smells to mention are sometimes the hardest to remedy—cigarette smoke and pets.  During the listing period, pet owners need to be more diligent about grooming their pets and changing out any litter boxes, and smokers need to make sure they only smoke outside.

Professionals may need to be called in to clean carpets for both pet smells and cigarette smoke. And, for cigarette smokers, many times the entire house will need to be repainted with special primer coats to remove the smell of the cigarette smoke. Especially in the case of pet damage, sometimes carpets may need to be replaced in addition to removing the pad and potentially treating or even removing the subfloor.

—  Lauren Bunting is a licensed

Associate Broker with

Bunting Realty, Inc. in Berlin.

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