Real Estate Q & A For Every Season of Life


Q. A real estate agent told us we shouldn’t have our three dogs around when buyers are touring our home. Our dogs are sweet and friendly. Why should they have to leave?

A. Your dogs sound delightful and there are dog-loving buyers who might enjoy being greeted by your friendly furry companions. However, for the best home sale outcome, you want your buyer pool to include everyonewho is qualified to buy including cat lovers, those with pet allergies, and people who may be afraid of dogs.

When buyers and brokers come to tour, allow the home and all its wonderful features to be center stage—the spacious rooms, the natural light, and beautiful views. Pets in the home can be a distraction and make buyers cut their tour short.

A few ideas: Take your dogs for a ride during the showing or treat them to playtime at the dog park. Consider booking a stay for them at doggy day care during the home’s first week on the market when showings are frequent.

Interest in your home from many buyers increases the likelihood of a multiple-offer sale, potentially increasing the final sale price by thousands. You can buy a lot of doggy treats with that!

Q. A large, lovely tree in our yard overhangs the neighbor’s house. Our neighbors are listing their home for sale and plan to remove sections of the tree. They believe it is a safety hazard. We are afraid too much trimming might kill the tree. What can we do?

A. Your neighbor has a valid concern. Encroaching trees can worry buyers and create a liability for you. Any potential buyer will want to avoid inheriting expensive encroachment disputes. And if a heavy branch falls from your tree damages and your neighbor’s house, or worse, your neighbor, you could be liable.

Acknowledge your neighbor’s concern and offer next steps. Check with your town or county for tree management regulations. Bring out an arborist to share their expert opinion on how to prune the tree correctly to keep it thriving and ask for a written scope of work and bid. Draw up a written agreement with your neighbor on the work to be done and who’s going to pay for it.

Doing what you can to help your neighbor’s home sale will benefit you, too. Each successful home sale in your neighborhood improves everyone’s prospects. Hopefully, you’ll soon have terrific new neighbors!

Do you have a real estate question for us? Send it to

Rebecca Bomann is Founder and CEO of SASH Services, and Designated Broker of SASH Realty. With a background in social work and elder care, Rebecca created SASH to provide real estate services tailored for clients’ unique needs. Since 2005, SASH has served clients of all ages, with specialized home sale services for older adults and their families. 

Office: 6118 S 204th St Suite 395 Kent, WA

Phone: 206.501.4375

Website: and



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