Property Grunt

Thursday, September 08, 2005


Pets are always a big issue in Manhattan since they are the difference of keeping someone sane or mentally disturbed. However we often take for granted how pets can cause possible problems in the real estate business.

NEVER, EVER, EVER BRING YOUR PETS WITH IF YOU ARE A BUYER! You are asking for trouble. At a recent open house a couple brought their lovable Jack Russell terrier and although they did not even ask permission to bring the dog I allowed them to enter the premises. I figured it would be no problem since the building allowed pets anyway. Really bad idea.

Upon seeing the dog, another buyer refused to enter the apartment because she had a fear of dogs and only entered when one of the owners held the dog tightly in her lap. This setoff a chain reaction of fears in my head ranging from what if the dog took a dump in the apartment or what if it bit a customer. I kept a close eye for any one legged Jack Russell calisthenics or squats but luckily they left without incident.

That open house brought back flashbacks with my past interactions involving pets and real estate. I had one owner who had an adorable golden retriever who was great company to me. I would wait for buyers by petting him as he nuzzled his head on my lap. When the buyers would arrive he obediently went to his corner and stayed until the showing had concluded. I miss him.

Cats although equally lovable are definitely higher maintenance, particularly with their personal business. A dog can be taken out but cats need a litter box and until the owner cleans that out it will stink up the apartment.

One owner had this cat that exhibited passive aggressive behavior since it would come up to me purring and rubbing its body against my leg. As soon as I would kneel down to pet it, it would use me as a scratching post.

Whenever buyers came by to see the apartment I was always on edge and would warn them about the Tasmanian Devil but they would ignore me and pet the cute little kitty. For some reason it never attacked the buyers. Maybe it just hated me.

It is always best for sellers to take the pets out and douse the apartment with Febreze whenever they have to show the apartment. You never know if you are dealing with a buyer with severe allergies.