Odour is often the first thing that people notice when they enter a home. Smells have the power to drive your behavior on an instinctive and subconscious level. With that in mind, when it comes to putting your home on the market, it is imperative that no matter what kinds of odour your home portrays that you get them under control or it could cost you! When a potential buyer comes to view your home, you want their whole experience to be pleasant. In order for a buyer to connect with a home, it has to feel like home, and scent has a lot to do with what people experience when they first enter a household.
I had a listing some time ago, that had a smoker living & smoking in the residence for years. The home ended up selling for $50,000 less than it was worth just because of the lingering odour of smoke. If your selling your home and happen to be a smoker, it is suggested that you take some time to prep your home before it hits the market. You can do this by making sure you air the house out, wash all curtains, blankets etc and shampoo carpets to help minimize the odour. It will certainly make a difference in the negotiation phase if the buyer doesn’t have to commit to cleaning up after years of indoor smoking.
However, smoke is not the only scent that can make buyers pass on a house, animal and cooking odours can also linger. This may cause a potential buyer to consider walking away and not putting an offer in to buy your home. Pet odours can be overpowering, especially to people who don’t own pets. I have found myself in the position of actually walking out during a home viewing because the pet smell was so strong. Don’t get me wrong, I have pets and love my pets, but not that smell! If you have pets, I recommend washing their bedding regularly and airing out the house on sunny days or whenever possible.
Food smells can also drive people away, especially if you are cooking with strong smelling ingredients regularly. I cook a lot of onions and curries so I know all about strong cooking smells! Cooking is an important part of family life, I’m certainly not suggesting that you should not cook at home when you are in the selling process, but it couldn’t hurt to maybe cook on your barbecue if your showing your home that particular day. I actually do this quite often, I have a little side burner on my barbecue and I use it all the time for foods that have strong scents.
When you are selling your home, keep the odours out! I know it sounds so simple, but I still come across it all the time. Remember, the whole idea is that you want people to feel at home and be happy with their viewing experience, so follow your nose, sell faster, and at a better price!