If you have pets, keeping them around while your home is being shown to buyers may be a bad idea. Imagine being shown a home wherein one of the rooms contained several snakes. Sure, they’re in their terrariums and aren’t able to get at you, but if you don’t possess the same love for reptiles that the owner does, are you really going to stick around the place knowing one of the rooms plays host to a bevy of serpents?

Animals are also not necessarily the cleanest of beings. Keeping up on bathing your dog or cat is great, but it’s almost impossible to keep the home hair-free. Additionally, pets can add an odor to the home that you’re likely unaware of. Have someone who doesn’t own a pet come in and sniff the air in your home; hopefully they won’t pick up the scent of the animal. On the subject of smells, cats, or more accurately, their litter boxes, are some of the most notorious olfactory offenders. If someone can detect the scent of the cat’s litter box in your home, it’s going to require serious cleaning and airing out before anyone should be allowed to view the place.

When a home is being shown, it should be welcoming. Some agents won’t even show a home if, upon reaching the front door, a dog is barking behind it. Dogs, even those who don’t bark at strangers, are often curious creatures. Having your dog trailing behind as he or she investigates the newcomer is, at best, distracting and at worst downright irritating. If you own pets, reducing their presence in the home can be a hassle, but will only help you in the long run.