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Discussion Starter #1
Hi all! Been a while since I've been here! Some might remember my Ellie passing away last summer and leaving me with just Cricket downstairs and Snow Kitty upstairs (they are not compatible). Well, since then my dad passed away and I now have his cat, Girly, downstairs with Cricket.

I am going to try to sell my house this year and am having fits about what to do with the cats. After 12 years with them in this small space, the house definitely shows (and smells) like cats live there. I'm planning on having new flooring put in as well as painting the entire place. Therein lies the problem.

First of all, I'm trying to figure out how to get all of the work done with the cats in the house. Secondly, after it's cleaned up nice I don't want the cats to mess/stink it up again, and I don't know what to do with them while showing the place.

I am single and I work full time 5-6 days a week. It's very hard for me to get things like this done because I don't have anyone else to help by being there when workers come, etc. I don't know of anyone who could take 3 cats for me while I'm going through this process, especially when Snow Kitty is separate from the other two, nor do I really want to put the cats through that.

I just don't know what to do. Does anyone have any ideas? Thanks for your help! :)
 

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I've thought about this issue so many times. As far as workers being there and not wanting the kitties around them (and who would trust them not to leave the front door open?), I'd keep the cats on a different floor from where they're working, even if you had to rotate which floor that is. On each floor are there separate rooms for them? In a real pinch I might board Murphy at a vet's office, but that's really the last resort.

Another question is what you do when the house is on the market. What do people do with litterboxes during the day, when an agent may show the house? My only thought has been that if you know people are coming over, I'd take Murphy and his litterbox to the car and just wait it out. But what about during the day when people may be coming to see the house? You can't deprive him of his litterbox all day long.
 

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When we bought our home, the seller had cats, but left very little trace of them - house did not smell, I saw they're food/water dishes tucked in a closet, and the litter was in an unfinished part of basement where we also keep ours now. They let their cats outside during showings, though I can't say I'd recommend that! My opinion is to maximize the value of your home, do whatever you can to eliminate any odours - even though I am an animal lover, I was never interested in showings if the house had an odour.

If you do have to keep your kitties around during showings, be sure you communicate to your agent or buyer's agents that you have cats so that no one sneaks out an open door. You'll also have to sweep up any hair before all showings and keep some air freshners on hand. I would also suggest a litter locker. It really traps the smell and that way you can clean up the litter before any showings very quickly.
 

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Hi,

As far as the house agent showing your home, there should be no problem with him or her coordinating the showings when you are home!
You could then make sure the litter boxes are cleaned out and the house is aired out, if you think it may smell of cats...
My friend is a house agent and has very picky clients who only allow showings on certain days between certain times. This should be no problem, since the house agent is working for you, so in terms of visiting days and times, YOU are the boss...

As for when you will have people working in your house, it could be as simple as putting your two cats who get along in one bedroom, with their food, water and litter, and the other cat in another bedroom with the same accomodations, This way, your cats would not be ''in the way'' of the workers, and they could not escape. To make sure the workers don't go in the bedrooms where your cats are, you can purchase cheap doorknnobs that lock and put them on the doors, to make double sure they will not open the doors and let your cats escape!

As for the smells... well, I have 8 cats and live in a 1200 square feet apartment, and I can guarantee you that every one who comes in my house don't notice any smells what so ever. (I use unscented "old school" clay litter, scoop out the poop as they go, and change the litter 3 times per week). As long as you keep the litter boxes clean, there should not be any problems with smells. You only have 3 cats, so I doubt the smell will be an issue!
If you are however concerned with the smell, using a solution of 2 cups of vinegar in 4 liters of water to mop the floors should rid the house of any smells, I find that vinegar dosn't cover up the smells like store baught floor cleaners do, but instead, it eliminates it!

Hopefully this helps.

sandyrivers
 

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This should be no problem, since the house agent is working for you, so in terms of visiting days and times, YOU are the boss...
Boy, in this day and age when it's a buyer's market, I have a feeling the owner would be expected to be at the beck and call of any potential buyer, and would be expected to vacate whenever they get word that someone is coming over. That's even how it was when I sold my condo in 2005, when it was a complete seller's market. That's the easier scenario, when you know they're coming at a certain time and you could just vacate with the cat and litterbox. The harder thing is during the day, when people might easily be coming over when you're at work.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Yeah, I just wish I could buy my new house first and move them in there! :lol: My dad's house is empty now, and I could go there temporarily, but we're trying to sell that one too. :( I wish it was one that I wanted to buy, but I just don't. The location isn't convenient and it's not what I want.
 

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When we sold our house I was at the beck and call of the real estate agent. She was always calling and saying, we have a showing in half an hour. Holy cow, talk about doing some fast cleaning. I have 5 kids and was a stay at home mom at the time. You know how hard it is to have a house show-ready at all times? LOL. I tried to keep it to where all I had to do was pick up at the last minute. I never turned down a showing, I was afraid they'd just look elsewhere.

We had a dog and 3 guinea pigs at the time. I'd load the dog and her food and water bowls in the car, the guinea pigs had to chill in their cage, and I'm sure their squeaking surprised some people before they figured out what it was but it just wasn't feasable to remove them. Our house didn't smell like dog or guinea pig though. Any time we have a pet accident I clean it immediately with Nature's Miracle or something to that effect and I've never had any problems with pet smells. So if you get new flooring you want to make sure you clean up any accidents with an enzyme cleaner which will eliminate the odors. Good luck!!!
 

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another helpful hint

1 of the oldest tricks in the book when showing a home is to throw a batch of chocolate chip cookies in the oven when you know people are coming. just keep some store bought rolled up cookie dough in the frig (the stuff that comes in a tube) and cut 'em up and throw 'em in the oven before you leave. leave a plate of the cookies out for the prospective buyers. it gives them a warm, fuzzy, home-y feeling when they walk in.

the sellers of our house did that and we didn't notice the smel of their dog OR cat when we walked in. we just smelled the warm cookies all over the house!

of course, if you've got a serious odor problem because you have urine soaked furniture or carpet, then cookies probably won't do the trick. you'll need to bring out the heavy machinery to take care of that. good luck!
 
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