Buying a new home can seem complicated, especially for dog owners. Recent studies show that many dog owners are even making home buying choices based on the needs and comfort of their dogs. Thankfully there are several ways to make the process easier for you and your pet.
Find the right new home
There are a few things you should consider when shopping for your new home.
- Rules and regulations. Local governments often have leash laws and require you to pick up after your dog. Similarly, some homeowners associations allow pets but have restrictions. Check these limitations before committing to something that won’t work for you and your dog.
- The home itself. Take a few minutes to contemplate what is comfortable for your dog. How much space is required to live comfortably? Would tile or carpeting be better? Can your dog handle stairs? Is fencing and a doghouse needed? You may want to make notes for reference.
Location, location, location. Many communities are becoming more pet-friendly.
You could look for a neighborhood with a dog park nearby, or maybe you would like a rural location with room for Fido to run. You should also consider how close the house is to your workplace. If you have a long commute, you may need to hire someone to walk your dog.
Tips for selling the old house
Getting your house ready to sell can seem overwhelming, and again, for dog owners this can be a bit more difficult. Fortunately there are plenty of staging suggestions to be found:
- Declutter the inside. Remove items from countertops and pack up dishes, hide trash cans, and clean and organize pantries and closets. Make the house less “personal” and more gender neutral by removing video games, sports posters, and dainty embellishments. This helps shoppers picture themselves living there.
- Brighten dark spaces. Dark hallways or corners can be brightened by adding a mirror. Paint adjacent rooms the same color to make the space seem larger, and paint over dated, dark wood paneling.
- Remove evidence of pets. Treat stained carpets or rugs until they are clean or replace them if necessary. Remove pet bedding and use air fresheners to eliminate odors. Vacuum your dog’s hair from all the nooks and crannies of rooms. Take your dog out when you leave during showings, and be sure the yard is cleaned up before you go. While the house has been home to you and your dog, having it look pet-free is to your benefit.
- Make the exterior inviting. Freshly paint your front door in a complementary color, replace the worn out doormat, and open your entryway by trimming back shrubbery. Hide trash cans and hoses, clean cobwebs and insects, and plant flowers. Just like inside the home, you want the exterior to be bright, uncluttered and gender neutral so shoppers can picture themselves there.
Making the move itself
Experts say dogs handle moving well as long as the family (you and other pets) goes with them. Keep these things in mind when it’s finally time to move:
- Set a routine. Keep up the usual schedule as much as possible to make for a smoother transition. Establish a routine that will continue in the new home.
- If your dog is anxious or you can’t confine your pet while packing, consider having someone care for your dog temporarily. Your dog’s things, such as bedding and toys, should be some of the last items you pack up. On the day of the move it will be essential to confine the dog to avoid injury or escape, so plan accordingly.
- Moving in. Make living arrangements in the new home as familiar as possible for your dog. Items such as favorite toys and their bed ease the transition for your beloved pet.
Home sweet home
Buying a new home and moving are difficult, but thinking through the process will help you and your dog. Thoughtfully choose the new home by considering requirements, the house, and the neighborhood. Carefully sell the old house by staging it well, and make the move smooth and comfortable for you and your dog through solid planning. Following these simple tips will make the new house home for the whole family.