Scents, Smells & Selling a House

By
Real Estate Agent with RE/MAX Andrew Realty Serfvices

 Bad smells or heavy scents can stop your saleThere’s an old saying in real estate “If I can smell it, I can’t sell it”. If your home has strong unpleasant odors, you want to eliminate those smells so a buyer won’t literally turn up their nose at your house. However, some people like to use scented candles, potpourri or other plug-in, stick-up artificial scents. I was in one house last week and was greeted by something that smelled almost but not quite like fresh baked cookies. Something was a bit off in the smell. There were no cookies in the oven – it was a scented candle. The nose knows real aroma from fake scent.

I’ve seen home sellers overdo it where each room has a different aroma. The heavier the scent, the more buyers will think you are trying to cover up a nasty smell. You also want to keep in mind that many people have allergies. The Misty-Meadow-After-The-Rain scent that you find very attractive could set off a sneezing fit in a buyer looking at your home.

When you’re selling a house, my recommendation is to clean the house and open the windows to air it out rather than use any type of artificial scent.

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Re-Blogged 1 time:

Re-Blogged By Re-Blogged At
  1. Wanda Greif 04/20/2010 02:43 AM
Topic:
Home Selling
Tags:
selling your home
selling a house
real estate sales tips

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Rainer
28,924
Wanda Greif
Signature Real Estate - Urbandale, IA
Connecting Buyers and Sellers

Excellent advice! Cat litter with a touch of jasmine is no more appealing than the cat litter itself. Clean, fresh and non-offensive is the safest route to go.

Apr 20, 2010 02:38 AM #1
Rainer
43,248
Lisa Walston
Atlas Property Group and Abbey Church Properties - Greenwood, IN

Fresh air is the best for sure. Sometimes that isn't always practical. Clean also works better than any artificial smell.

Apr 20, 2010 02:40 AM #2
Rainer
155,657
Carla Dimond
CATARRA - Mountain View, CA
(Silicon Valley)

A house can never be to clean.  I agree that fake smells really turn buyers off

Apr 20, 2010 02:40 AM #4
Rainmaker
1,006,463
Karen Anne Stone
New Home Hunters of Fort Worth and Tarrant County - Fort Worth, TX
Fort Worth Real Estate

Deb:  You make a great point about a buyer wondering if a burning scented candle is there to cover up some nasty smell.  I had not thought of that.  And... after reading comment # 1... how great.  Cat litter with a touch of Jasmine.  I don't think Mollie T Cat would go anywhere near that cat box.  She does have her preferences, and also likes her privacy.  :)

This is also kinda funny... cuz just before stumbling onto this post, and reading it, I just lit my Christmas Spice candle that I keep next to my computer.  LOL.

Apr 22, 2010 09:17 PM #5
Rainmaker
165,790
Jill McTague
RE/MAX Andrew Realty Serfvices - Medford, MA
DebOnTheWeb & Associates - Medford, MA Real Estate

I agree Karen - I love Wanda's witty "cat litter with a touch of Jasmine".

That's too funny that you had just lit a scented candle :)

Apr 22, 2010 09:37 PM #6
Rainer
38,605
Jill Banks,
Happily Better After Room Redesign & Home Staging - Mt Laurel, NJ
South Jersey Home Stager

Lightly scented odor neutralizers are a good choice if a house has a smell that can't be eliminated by cleaning alone.  (Older homes surrounded with lots of ivy tend to smell musty, even if the interior is clean.)  If you're going to use them, open the windows afterward to invite the fresh air in.

Apr 23, 2010 06:14 AM #7
Rainmaker
1,006,463
Karen Anne Stone
New Home Hunters of Fort Worth and Tarrant County - Fort Worth, TX
Fort Worth Real Estate

Deb:  I noticed that you added me as an Associate.  Thank you.  Just for fun... here is a post I wrote about adding someone as an Associate.  I hope you find it useful.  Adding Someone as an "Associate." What Is It, and Why Should I Do It ?

Take care... have a great weekend !

Apr 23, 2010 12:04 PM #8
Rainmaker
165,790
Jill McTague
RE/MAX Andrew Realty Serfvices - Medford, MA
DebOnTheWeb & Associates - Medford, MA Real Estate

Nice post on why to add someone as an Associate Karen.  Your work here on ActiveRain is impressive!

Apr 23, 2010 09:31 PM #9
Rainmaker
1,006,463
Karen Anne Stone
New Home Hunters of Fort Worth and Tarrant County - Fort Worth, TX
Fort Worth Real Estate

Deb:  Bless your heart.  You are very kind.  I am glad you found my post helpful.  It's just the former teacher in me peeking out again.  Take care...

Apr 23, 2010 10:22 PM #10
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Rainmaker
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Jill McTague

DebOnTheWeb & Associates - Medford, MA Real Estate
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