Profile picture for jcasey78

Buying a home with pet odor

We recently looked at a 3 year old home. We really like the house and the only thing holding us back from putting an offer is pet odor. There was a dog and two cats in the house. Is there a good way to remove the pet odor or will it eventually go away?
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May 18 2012 - Clarksville
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Profile picture for wetdawgs
A gently used home with odor of dogs and cats running around will quickly lose the odor when cleaned thoroughly.   However, if pets have been urinating (or worse) in the house so that it has penetrated carpets and subflooring and/or cats have sprayed the walls, it will be more difficult (but not impossible).   There can also be problems when cats have used the soil in the periphery as a toilet.  The home we live in now had a horrible stench by the front door because of cats using the soil as a toilet (a practice which we've blocked by laying fencing on the soil and covering it with mulch).

Was the house vacant when you viewed it, or does it still have furniture, doggy beds and the like?      The pet odor in my home (with a dog) varies tremendously depending on when the dog blanket/bed was washed (and when the dog was washed).   If both are freshly washed, none of my pet odor sensitive friends has any complaints.

Bottom line - maybe, depends on the scent penetration.
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May 18 2012
If the cats have been urinating on the carpet, the best way to get rid of the odor is to replace the carpet and treat the sub flooring.  That should eliminate the odor.  Once the carpet is removed and the owners personal belongings, you should notice a big difference.
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May 19 2012
We purchased our home 9 years ago with the worst pet odor - I could barely walk into the home. BUT, the structure was sound, the home was perfect. We had the carpet and pads ripped out and painted the walls. It has been perfect ever since. It was so worth doing because we have been happy here for 9 years. I would not let pet odor scare you off because the cost of new carpet (or maybe you have wood floors underneath?) is inexpensive compared to finding another home that is a perfect match. I have zero regrets. Also, I do not think we needed to paint - I think the carpet alone would have resolved it. Check under the carpet - you may have an amazing surprise of beautiful wood floors????? ;)
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May 19 2012
Profile picture for sunnyview
If the odor is deep, you will have to seal surfaces to get rid of it, but many times just a deep cleaning and new carpet will do the trick I grew up in a family of rehabbers and I saw houses that were worthy of a Hoarders TV show. Some had animals and some did not. Without exception, a deep cleaning and the sealing/painting of heavily damaged surfaces eliminated any odors.

I would plan on removing any carpet or pad, washing down all surfaces including the ceilings and fixtures. If the odor still is not eliminated, you may have to painting or sealing most surfaces including the subfloor before you recarpet. Stinky houses can be great since once you eliminate to odor you may get a great deal on a house that you will enjoy.
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May 19 2012
Before buying a home with pet odor, you should have the home inspected by a qualified Pet Odor Inspection Service! This would be a company that also "Remediates" the odor problem. They will be able to determine the extent of the damage provide a report & an estimate to remediate the odor problem. 

To many buyers rely on the non expertise of the seller, realtors, and do-it-yourself pet odor removal techniques prior to closing escrow. Only to discover months later that this is not an easy to fix problem, they were given bad advise, the seller is long gone, the sellers agent reminds you that on the disclosure it said there was pet odor, your agent say's the technique worked for the last home he sold....

Don't be fooled! Use common sense! If it smells like a urinal it has been used as one, if it was so simple to remove the sellers agent would have done something about already.... so it wouldn't be so offensive to prospective buyers.

Pet urine odor damage on a 1500 square foot house depending on the severity can start at $4500 and go as high as 15-20k before you even begin replacing carpet, wood floors, tile, linoleum,drywall,cabinets, doors, baseboards or paint!

It's no joke! Why would you gamble by putting down 25k-100k down on a house and don't have enough money to get rid of the odor......You're getting a carpet allowance?

That's part of the joke...when you pull the old carpet up and see all those years of urine stains, rusted out tack strips, disintegrated pad and really get a whiff of the ammonia coming out of the slab..... that "new carpet allowance" you settled for wasn't even a fraction the problem!

Just google......... "pet odor inspection service" or pet odor removal service" for a qualified pet odor removal or inspection service!
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August 19 2012
Pet odors can dissipate when the pets are gone. Dog beds, furniture, and litter boxes can all add to the smell. I agree the urine would be the problem. You can seal subfloors with Sealcoat which is sold at any home improvement store. It is basically Shellac. Pour it out of the can onto the subfloor and roll it out with a roller and while it will stink for a little bit it will seal the odors in.
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August 20 2012
 
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