Active Rain May 11, 2009

This Blog Posting Stinks

This may be a touchy subject to some, but many people sabotage their own efforts to sell their home because of how their house smells. The source is most often a food or pet odor, and in both cases it is relatively preventable, especially as the warmer weather is upon us. This is probably the under-discussed issues among professionals, and that might be rooted in the rather intensely personal nature of the culture of our food and pets. 

This post isn’t about how to eliminate odors; it is about creating a dialogue. 

Today, I walked into a home with buyer clients and we were incredibly distracted by a pungent food odor. It was hard to concentrate. 

Later, we saw a home that clearly had a big dog- bones, dishes, and a large crate in one of the rooms. But there was no pet odor-none. Having been in homes that smelled like a kennel, I know this takes some work. 

The first home we saw with the bad food odor would have been perfect- the price was right, the work needed was manageable, and the location and layout were fabulous. Food odor killed their interest. Most people know if their house smells a little funky, and it should be part of the sales preparation process to fix that. If the agent doesn’t address the matter, no matter how uncomfortable that may be, they are derelict in their duties to the seller. 

I would address it to clients diplomatically of course, but my appeal would be to their bottom line rather than their lifestyle. 


J. Philip Real Estate 

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J. Philip Faranda is New York’s Premier Short Sale REALTOR. Read Phil’s short sale blog here at

J. Philip Serves Briarcliff Manor, Ossining, the River towns , Westchester County & the bedroom counties of New York City.