Smoking At Home Reduces Property Value

Smoking Odours Can Reduce Property ValueA recent survey of Ontario real estate agents in Ontario found that smoking in a home could lower the value of your property by up to 30 per cent.

The survey was sponsored by Pfizer Canada and besides the obvious damage by staining walls and carpets, it can leave a smell that is very hard to eliminate. I remember having a client close a deal and noticed a smell of smoke when they entered the home on closing. I asked why they didn’t notice the smell when they originally toured the home and they said fans were on with electric air fresheners plugged into the walls. That apparently masked the smell that day.

via Costly tobacco: Smoking at home reduces property values says Ontario survey | Toronto Star.

Sellers expend a lot of money and effort to make their home look its best when they put it up for sale. Many sellers don’t realize, however, that what buyers smell is actually just as important, if not more important, than what they see. A reduction in value of 30% is pretty extreme, for example a $700,000 home isn’t going to be discounted to $500,000 because of smoke odour… but a 5%-10% discount is definitely realistic, and that’s still a lot of money. In addition to smoke, the other most frequent culprits are pet odours, especially cats; and cooking odours, especially strong ones like curry. Sellers often don’t realize how strong the odours are, as the brain is very good at tuning out persistent odours – so listen to your realtor if he or she tells you there’s an odour problem!