We sold and bought a house about 18 months ago. I didn’t have a lot of kids to deal with but 3 aging, think geriatric, pets to deal with. We followed DR’s advice about getting the pets out, to help sell but also to cut down on them getting let let out accidentally and to prevent bites and/or scratches (2 cats and a dog). We had to kennel up the cats … not easy as all while your hands and arms are getting scratched up. The dog just had to be leashed but was hard no him too. The dog and one of the cats was about 17 or 18 years old, so very much like a 90 year old person.
Our agent is/was top notch. She always scheduled an appointment, no “drop by and let’s see what happens” kind of thing. She knew the pets were an issue and agreed that getting them out for showings was the best idea. It worked okay for us. We were always given enough time to load up and get away from the house.
We never had an open house for the public. The only one we had was for the agent’s real estate firm. I think we just put the cats in their kennels and the dog in the fenced yard. Not sure where the cat’s kennels were put? It was only a couple of hours though.
Our agent was top notch, as I said. She took very good pictures of all the rooms. One week from the date the pictures and our listing went live on the web we sold our house!
We did do a LOT of decluttering to the point if renting a 10×10 ft storage unit. We did touch ups such as touching up paint, fixing some boards on the porch and repainting it, putting in brighter light bulbs, cleaning windows, etc. None of it was very expensive but I believe it helped sell the house.
Every day I swiffered the floors primarily because of the pet fur. I kept laundry done so the hampers were not full of dirty clothes. We prepped by wiping down blinds and keeping the cat box scooped, etc. While we did not have a showing every day, I got up and prepared as if we were going to have one. That way it was easier to get out of the house if we did get the call.
You wrote about decluttering. I believe this will help sell your house & it won’t cost you a dime. We used to have a good bit of clutter. Our decluttering actually started when we moved into the house we just sold. A decluttered house looks bigger, cleaner, and allows “breathing room” so to speak.
We did not have a garage sale for several reasons. One, I hate doing them and that is the biggest reason. We asked ourselves several questions:
1) Do I LOVE LOVE LOVE it?
2) Do I have a “home” for this (place to store it)?
3) Do I have something else that can save the same purpose?
4) If I get rid of it, could I easily replace it if I need to later? IOW, easily replace it financially, find one, etc.?
5) Does it still work & is it in good condition? It doesn’t have to be in perfect condition to keep but must be in good condition. Take socks for example …. they may not be faded but the heels may be worn. This means the condition is not good enough to be kept. This is just one simple example.
Hope this helps and best wishes in getting it all done.