spray and do their business in your homes, I commend you and applaud your ownership and your right to keep your homes smell free and cat friendly. This column is an opinion on a real estate perspective of how people who don’t control their animal’s natural body waste and how it is so detrimental to the value of your homes and properties. I love animals, all animals and I support my local

By Teri Davidson Reprinted from our August 2015 Issue

I will probably hear from several cat

owners after this column is published. They will be defending their pets and saying “not in my house.” So to address those of you who do look after your feline litter boxes and don’t allow your cherished friends to

SPCA and I have provided a loving and safe environ- ment for many animal friends over my 50 plus years on this planet. However I also understand how much damage an animal can wreak on a home and how this damage can result in you not being able to sell your home when its time to do so or cause you to have to drop your price far below what it would have been worth without the damage and smell. I see homes all the time that smell so bad with cat

urine and spray and my buyer clients can’t wait to exit that home and cross that particular house off the list of ones they are interested in buying. I have also had my own sellers whose home has

that cat smell and odor and I’ve given advice about what to do to resolve those issues so they can be suc- cessful in a sale. I’ve learned that broken pieces of

1448 Memorial Park Dr. East, Powassan, Ontario P0H 1Z0 $508,250

charcoal, the old kind we used to use prior to gas barbecues, works won- derfully well. If you can find a big bag, tear it open and leave it in the rooms where the cat smell is most prevalent it will absorb the smells and leave the home much friendlier for the nose. There are also certain brand name products which when sprayed or lit as some are an oil based product, will do a fairly good job. I really had no idea

how bad or how much ef- fort it would take to get rid of an excessive long term cat urine prob- lem.

I‘d recently purchased a smaller hobby

farm with the thoughts of retiring to the prop- erty when the day came that I’d downsize and cut back on my work schedule. Thirty seven years is along time work span for any person and I am thinking another five years and I’m done. I’d looked around at several smaller

properties in the country as my animals, dogs, horses and cats will be making the move with us. Low and behold a perfect property came

on the market. Set back in off the road with a small house that we can make as cute as a button. Nice newer horse barn and big work- shop for my husband. A combination of pas- ture and treed areas with paths I can walk my dogs on. It even had a small pond and an or- chard! I noticed when viewing the first time

lockers, horse shelters, padlocks, workshop, full pasture, fenced, drilled well, well maintained 4 bdrm bungalow on manicured grounds with recent quality upgrades. Enjoy your outdoor lifestyle, private, bring your horses + toys. Call for details.

Monika Gibbings Sales Representative

Each Office Independently Owned & Operated Email:

Home: 705-724-3190 Cell: 705-498-9157

118 Memorial Park Drive, East, Powassan, Ont. P0H 1Z0

This 9.31 acre paradise is located 30 min to North Bay, features indoor riding arena 20 X 40 meters with induction lighting, barn 54ft x 30ft, insulated, heated, tack Rm, stalls, private

that it had a somewhat strong cat urine smell but attributed it to three or four cat litter boxes which were used and not completely cleaned out. I saw three or four cats scurry away when I walked through the house but never realized how much damage those cats have done in the house. I figured we could remove the litter boxes and things would be relatively ok. After all we did plan on putting on new flooring through out as what was there was so old and worn. I visited the home a few times before

closing and each time the cat smell seemed to be worse and worse. The home owner

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Teri Davidson Broker/Owner

Over 36 yrs full-time experience • Canada's Most Referred Realtor

Serving: Brant, Haldimand, Norfolk, Ox- ford, South Dumfries, North

Dumfries, Ancaster, Flamborough, Cambridge and Woodstock.

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seemed to be letting the cats spray everywhere and there were wet spots of urine on the concrete basement floors. It was so bad I started to lose sleep over the smell and how would we ever be able to get rid of it. I tried to calm myself by thinking maybe I was blowing the problem up in my mind but then I’d go back and ..Yikes it was way worse that my previous visit. I mentioned it several times to the seller and she would respond that she hadn’t had time to clean the litter boxes. The day of closing arrived and we went into the home

to start what I thought would be minor renovations, paint, new floors, clean and scrub, and finish the basement dry- wall with tape and sanding. What was to be a quick and easy job turned into a nightmare! The cat smell was so bad we couldn’t breathe. Even

after every carpet was removed we were sickened and overwhelmed by the odor. My drywall contractor actually threw up after spending 10 minutes in the basement. I called friends, asked for advice and bought several

hundred dollars of products meant to get rid of cat odour and spray. Once I started to spray it on the walls I could actually see where the cats that had been living there had sprayed on the walls marking their territory. It was EVERYWHERE! We cleaned and cleaned, sprinkled borax powder,

waited two days and swept. It still smelled. I was beside myself. Nothing was working. The smell was still so strong no one could stand it. We decided to remove everything from the basement.

All the drywall had to come down, the strapping behind was completed rotted from holding the urine. I smelt like cat pee myself from carrying everything out to be dumped and burned. The entire basement, ceiling and all had to come out because the cats had done their business on the floors above. We went back to the concrete walls in all areas. We cut drywall out all along the perimeter of each room where the cat spray had reached. This all had to be replaced and the entire basement had to be redone. Our final step was to paint every floor, every wall half way up and the entire basement ceiling with an oil based special paint made especially for covering over odours. The woman at the store said they use it for cat, dog and smoke fire smells. The new floors went in, the final trimming was done

and eureka! SUCCESS!! Finally we couldn’t smell cat any longer. But it cost me so much extra money and taught me a valuable lesson. I will be able to explain to my buyers and sellers just

how important it is to take proper care of their inside ani- mals and their litter boxes. It made me appreciate why people are so turned off about buying homes that have cats in them. I also have some experience now with how to get rid of the cat issue if someone is prepared to take it on and can honestly give both buyer and seller good inside infor- mation as to what it will cost to do so and just how exten- sive a cat a problem your cat spraying in the house can be. Our homes are our castles and our sanctuaries but are

also our investments. Don’t let your cat ownership result in a huge value reduction on one of your biggest invest- ments for your future.


E: Top 3% in residential marketplace 2014-2016

Harnessing Country Living For You 1-800-268-2455 • (519) 939-SELL (7355)

Teri Davidson is Broker Owner of Associate realty Brantford Inc. Teri Davidson is Broker Owner of Associate Realty

in Brantford Ont. She has been a licensed realtor with the Brantford regional Real Estate Association since 1976 and sits on several committees within her board. She and her family own and operate White House Farm in Ancaster , Ont.

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