The Home Scent
If you have ever shopped for and then purchased a new car, then you are familiar with that “new car smell.” It is a pleasant scent that lets you know the vehicle is fresh off the production line. It shouldn’t surprise you that this helps sell cars both used and new. Why? Because the scent is widely available in the form of car fresheners and sprays.
If something as simple as a pleasant fragrance can motivate someone to purchase a car, then think of what it can do for selling your home. I’m not suggesting you make your home smell like a new car (unless you know for sure that a particular bidder will pay extra for this!), but that there are many ways in which you can use different aromas to enhance the sale potential of the house itself.
Using an aroma that is subtle to increase sales should be a no-brainer, but for many of us, it’s the last thing we are likely to think about when prepping our home for sale. However, what’s the big deal about the smell anyhow if the house is clean?
Everyone’s Home Has a Smell
“Smell” might be a strong word, but you know it when you walk into a friend’s home. The types of food they cook, the cleaning solutions they use, laundry detergent and even soaps and cologne all go into creating a smell that you recognize as uniquely theirs. Moreover, it is for this reason that home scenting is an essential factor in selling your home.
Why Bad Odors Turn Off Buyers
Face it, like encountering someone with bad breath unpleasant odors are a real turnoff. Furthermore, we avoid them whenever possible and endure them whenever we have to (think of the boss’s breath). So, if someone looking to buy a house encounters what they perceive as an unpleasant or noxious odor then it doesn’t’ matter how well the rest of the property is represented, most will desire to look elsewhere. Most home buyers cannot see past dirt, smell, or un-finished construction.
The Best Scent to Sell a Home
It is important to remember that you aren’t using a specific scent to mask odors. Cleaning the house first is essential. Moreover, when it comes to the sense of smell that means a thorough house cleaning first, and the avoidance of cooking heavy, rich foods (at least indoors) second. Once the house is cleaned correctly then wait a day or two for any smells from the cleaning products to dissipate.
Now it’s time to choose an aroma that works for you! Fresh scents are by far most desirable to use (meaning, avoid incense! You may like patchouli, but for most of civilization it is an acquired appreciation). Think of scents that make people feel refreshed and you will likely think of a cool breeze, citrus or even fresh herbs. Most of us, even city dwellers, genuinely enjoy the scent of pine and cedar wood because it provides a feeling of freedom and relaxation. Likewise, a pleasant citrus or herb scent feels fresh, lively and also quite relaxing. Another favorite scent is quite subtle, and many folks don’t consider it: white tea. White tea delivers a feeling of health, relaxation, and openness.
The Best Method for Home Scenting
The best method for home scenting comes in the form of essential oils and fragrances. Essential oils are distilled, concentrated extracts from the source plant that are added to a neutral oil which serves as the delivery vehicle. Keep in mind that essential oils are distinct from perfumes; avoid the use of perfumes. Essential oils will suffuse the house with a pleasant but not overpowering scent. It operates somewhat like ambient background music that you hear but does not distract your attention. (And, no, Muzak does not qualify as ambient or even music!)
One of the best things about essential oils is that they are unobtrusive and effortless to use and manage. This lack of complexity makes them fashionable even for people not looking to sell their homes. Some of the best methods for home scenting are the simplest.
Tea light diffusers are not suitable to scent an entire home because you need to place multiples of the tea lights and light them. This not only causes a hazard but it is not very practical to keep lit candles on surfaces where people are looking at your home.
Plug in diffusers have been on the market for some time and have been linked to many negative reviews. They are made with harmful chemicals and are not very aesthetically pleasing to the eye. After all, if you can see the scent dispenser you know there is an odor problem in the home.
However, what may be the best and most convenient method for home scenting is to take advantage of your HVAC and use a scent delivery system. These are cold-air nebulizing scent systems and made to scent large spaces. From this standpoint your entire house is uniformly covered with a pleasant yet not overpowering scent, and, what’s more, the scenting method is entirely transparent to any prospective buyer, whereas the previous delivery systems may make it look like you are trying too hard.
If you do not want to integrate into the HVAC for scent distribution you can use these units as stand-alone devices in any room or space.
The Last Word on Home Scenting for Real Estate
Remember that it is vital not to overdo it when scenting the home. Since most of us have a blind spot toward scents we are used to, or even those we are getting used to, it’s vital to invite over some friends and your real estate agent to give the house a walk through and advise on how your chosen essential oil impacts them. They can also inform you of any adverse smells that you may have missed in your cleaning regimen.
Home scenting is essential, uncomplicated and can help to improve the value of any home on the market. Keep essential oils in mind and discuss your strategy with your agent; you will be glad you did!