I realize that the housing market is in the toilet these days. But unfortunatly people need to move, whether it’s for a larger home for their family or due to a job transfer.
The market is so bad that our condo, which is currently on the market, is selling for $100,000 LESS then what we could have sold it for several years ago (that is no exaggeration). In fact, if we didn’t refinance 8 years ago and still had the original mortgage back when the housing market was at an all time high we could have profited closer to $175,000 on the sale of this place. Of course it was also expensive to buy houses back then too. Everything was at a premium price.
We regret not putting our condo on the market years ago. We made the decision to do it now because our kids are getting older and our one bedroom condo is not big enough for our family. It never has been. I guess we were just too scared to take the plunge and sell.
Our place has been on the market for a month now. We’ve had ONE person come over and see the place last weekend. That’s it. Another person was going to come over during the week but we were not home (we do not have a lock box on our place). As far as selling our condo is concerned we’re losing hope quickly.
We have been activley looking at houses to buy in the location we want to move to (upstate). We know we cannot make an offer on a place until our condo is under contract. We’re looking to see what is available to us in our price range. Not only that, if we find 4 or 5 possible contenders that we like, and someone does buy our condo, at least we’ve done some of the leg work and know that there are a few houses we’d be interested in buying. In this market I’m sure 1-2 of them will most likely still be available.
We’re having a hard time with our realtor. I won’t go into all the nitty gritty details but the big issue is our pets. We have a dog and five cats. Because of this we cannot have a lock box on our condo. Our dog would freak out if strangers walked into our home and no one would want to look at our place with a barking dog. So we agreed with our realtor that he would give us a two hour notice when he wants to bring someone over. That way we can tidy up and take the dog out of the house.
Last weekend we were upstate and he called to tell us that someone wanted to come over and look at our place, but there was no way we’d get home in two hours to get our dog. Our realtor got VERY nasty with me and said “This is why you need a lock box!”.
Another issue our realtor has is our cats. He doesn’t want them to be seen at all. He wants us to put them in crates and put them in the basement. Fine and dandy except we have five cats and we’d need five crates. Not only that the condo board would not be happy about that, nor would our cats. Our oldest cat couldn’t handle that.
We do have a dog and five cats, however my home is totally clean. We cleaned it from top to bottom (scrubbed everything and cleaned the carpets twice). You cannot smell pets in our home. We’ve asked people who have come into our home – including the realtor – if you can smell that we have cats or a dog. Everyone says “no”.
We hide the toys and beds. The ONLY thing visible is the litter box, but, the litter box is a piece of furniture so that it doesn’t stand out too much. It looks exactly like this (below).
So our place doesn’t smell like our pets and there is very little visual evidence of pets in our home. There is just one problem – the cats themselves.
Two of our cats (my boys) are terrified of strangers and will hide and will not come out of hiding until the coast is clear. One of my girls usually hides too but she’s been getting a bit brave lately and will come out of hiding after a little while. I guess she wants to make sure the stranger is OK.
My other two girls are my concern. Kitty is very friendly and will follow anyone around including repair men and delivery men. Our youngest, Bella, follows people around out of curiosity.
All of my cats are very lovey-dovey (except to the vet ). Bella however has hissed and growled at people before. NOT in our home but if we’re holding her in the hallway outside of our condo and someone approaches her she will hiss and growl. Not because she’s mean but more so because she’s scared. We’re hoping she doesn’t do that when people come over and they try and approach her.
One of our neighbors who has never been inside our condo before is going to come over and walk around our condo while we go outside with our dog to see what the cats do (Do they follow her? Do they hide from her?). Plus we’re going to have her look at our place objectively and see if she sees any other evidence of pets and if there is a smell. She’s been to our front door before and said she’s never smelled anything.
My questions to my readers is… If you were looking at a place to buy would you be turned off if the house had cats that followed you around? Would you not want to look at a home that pets in it, no matter how clean and fresh smelling it was? If you saw a litter box that was clean and didn’t smell in a home you were looking at, would you not want to consider the house or would you just over look it knowing that people do live there and people have pets?
If you have sold your home and you have multiple pets, what did you do with them? Did you leave them home? Did you crate them?
We cannot physically remove all of the pets. We have place to put them or no neighbor we can bring them to. The condo board won’t allow us to keep the cats in crates in the basement. Our balcony is in direct sunlight which would be deadly for them. We don’t know what else we can do.
We’ve looked at several houses so far. One house had a cat and there was kitty litter everywhere and canned food in a bowl (you know how canned food smells). We looked at another house that had a small dog crate in the living room (no dog) and dog toys scattered about. None of this bothered us. We focus on the “bones” of the house, such as the structure and things like no cracks in the ceilings, windows with no drafts and stuff like that. Decor, pets and paint colors are not a huge issue with us. We can paint and decorate it with our own stuff. We also know that people live in these homes and they have pets. What is the big deal?
When you buy a home don’t you usually scrub it from top to bottom too? I’ve only bought our condo that we currently live in. Before we moved in me, my husband, my mother and my mother in law scrubbed every nook and cranny before we officially moved in. So one would assume who ever bought our place would do the same thing? And since our home is already very clean – including the fact that we have pets – should SEEING my pets really matter that much? There are no stains on the carpet. There are no scratches on things. I mean, you can’t get any cleaner.
I would appreciate any “.02 cents” you might have on buying a home that has pets and trying to sell a home with multiple pets. This is all very stressful and getting me very down.
Does anyone want to buy a condo in the suburbs of New York City? LOL