When you are selling your home on the Kitsilano real estate market, you have only a short period of time in which to make a good impression on a buyer. That good impression can be catastrophically ruined by unpleasant odours. Scent is the sense that is most heavily linked to memory and recollection, but it’s also invisible and therefore easy to forget in the hubbub of staging your house for presentation.
You can bet that the way your house smells will affect how a buyer remembers the property. After the showing, when they are considering putting in an offer, they will be relying on their memories of the home. If those memories are tainted by the malingering impression of a bad odour, they are unlikely to want to buy. Unfortunately, since this is your home, it can also be very difficult to notice odours at all. We get used to the smell of our own home, and after some time it doesn’t even register to our senses— even if we are trying to smell it. What can be done about these pesky and less-than-pleasant perfumes?
First, figure out how your house smells. As previously mentioned, it’s hard to do this yourself, so feel free to have a friend who hasn’t visited for a while let you know if there’s a scent you need to cover up. Better yet, you can ask your selling agent if they think your home could use some freshening up, since they will have to visit the property anyway and they probably aren’t acclimated to your home’s scent.
Second, identify the places that odours hide. The big culprits here are always fabrics, but scents can be found almost everywhere. As a result, washing bedding, towels, clothes, carpets and upholstery can be a good start to making your house smell perfectly fresh. If just washing doesn’t quite do the trick, or if a fabric is difficult to wash thoroughly, you can also treat it with a fabric refresher like Febreze. The important ingredient is fabric refreshers like these is called beta-cyclodextrin, which is what lets them eliminate odors instead of just masking them with perfumes, so make sure that you are using a product that contains it.
Pets are a common cause of odours. Even when you don’t take the hair they lose into account, or if you have a non-shedding dog, they still produce lots of dander that gets ground into every accommodating surface. To get rid of pet odours, try products that are listed as containing enzymes. Enzymatic products reduce pet stains and odours very effectively, so much so that when you use them properly not even your pet can smell anything afterwards. Sometimes enzymatic cleaners do have a slightly musty scent of their own, though, so it’s a good idea to follow them up with a spritz of refresher. Many vets and pet stores even sell enzymatic candles that are great for giving the whole house a fresh scent.
If you don’t like using candles and chemicals to freshen your house, there are more natural options as well. Fresh flowers are great for staging a home and making it smell great. Baking prior to a showing can fill your house with a warm and inviting smell. Essential oils can also be used to ad some zest to the air.
I hope these tips help you get your home smelling great while selling.