scent or not .. if so .. what?

newontarionianOctober 25, 2008

hi there!

i visited my neighbor's home this morning. the aroma was very pleasant from some expensive home perfume-y gadget she must use. i got to wondering if i should invest in that and get it going to make it more pleasant for home buyers. but .. then i also got to thinking, maybe people will wonder why there is so much scent.

well .. any opinions about what to do? do you use vanilla on lightbulbs or something? do you really bake something daily or whatever?

may i have your advice about what to use, if anything, as we are about to begin interviewing real estate agents and all.

thanks a lot. i know your thoughts will be invaluable to us!



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I'd skip it. If I was looking at houses, that type of artificial scent would make me suspicious that the seller was trying to mask something unpleasant, like mold or pet odor.

    Bookmark   October 25, 2008 at 8:03PM
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Clean is the best smell. People become suspicious when they are buying a home. A few might think, "nice smell", but many others will think you are covering up cigarette smoke, stinky dog, litter box or a just plain smelly house. Other people are sensitive to perfumes (I can handle the food scents, but the perfume scents give me a headache).

    Bookmark   October 25, 2008 at 8:06PM
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Stick with food smells, like cookies baking or brownies. Things that trigger good memories. Stay well away from perfumes.

    Bookmark   October 25, 2008 at 8:35PM
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Another vote for "clean." Most smells give me a headache. Stronger ones, migraines. Only minor vanilla or cinnamon don't bother me.

    Bookmark   October 25, 2008 at 8:42PM
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Skip the scents -- I always wonder what they're trying to cover up, plus some are just so overwhelming as to be a turn off. Stick with clean or baking cookies or brownies or bread.

    Bookmark   October 25, 2008 at 9:01PM
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This is a thread we see here in cycles. Yes, scents make me suspicious. I always think "sewer problems" or cat pee when I got into a home with scents as a worse case scenario and a person trying too hard as a best case scenario.

What smells good is clean.....fresh. Air out your house beforehand if it's warm enough. Run a humidifier the night before, if it's been humid or rainy. Murphy's oil soap, the lightest scent of bleach. Windex. Those are smells I identify with as honestly pleasant, because that's what my house smells of when it's in order. The heaviest scent I'd ever not suspect would be febreeze, maybe or the smell of a carpet just shampooed.

    Bookmark   October 26, 2008 at 12:18AM
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Find a way to lightly scent the house; a good quality home spray, used very sparingly, will not seem like you are masking anything. I think the key is to spray one quick spritz, not too much. I used to do a quick light spray in closets and bedrooms, it can smell stale in there. Vanilla is usually pleasant to most people.

    Bookmark   October 26, 2008 at 6:14AM
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Do a forum search, as was mentioned this topic comes up fairly often.

I normally burn a Honeysuckle candle, started doing it after losing my dad. It's a really light, nice scent. When we were selling, I usually cleaned the day/night before, then spot cleaned the next day. I used to try to open the windows so that there were no smells in the house.

Some people like vanilla I do not and would walk out of a house smelling like it. Lemon doesn't bother me as long as it isn't over powering, but it may bother others.

Things like baking brownies or bread also can be good but can be bad as well as buyers will wonder what you are hiding.

    Bookmark   October 26, 2008 at 7:54AM
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i am always soooo glad i thought to bring up a topic to this group of people. i really cant imagine leaving a lighted candle unattended. i also dont bake .. cause i would never want to eat the stuff as it is far too yummy.

i am glad that nobody thought i should get that store bought stuff so i guess i will stick to 'clean.'

thanks, again, everyone


    Bookmark   October 27, 2008 at 6:11AM
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Just wondering what gives you a "clean" smell? I happen to like the smell of lemon PineSol, but others might not like it. What do you like?

    Bookmark   October 29, 2008 at 11:02AM
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Scents are very personal. For instance, roselvr says she hates the scent of vanilla. I personally hate, hate, HATE the smell of lemon. I don't know why. Stick with clean.

I also do not like to smell someone else's food cooking in a home. An empty house that smells like food says to me that there is not enough air circulating and the place get stagnant. I wouldn't bake bread or anything. I also hate the smell of bread baking BTW, but that is probably because of living in a city that has so many breweries operating and a big Red Star yeast factory spewing out stink.

Don't scent bathrooms when showing a home. So many people do this. I don't know why. This always gives me the impression that someone just got done doing their business in there and used room spray to cover it.

Stick with clean.

    Bookmark   October 29, 2008 at 4:22PM
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My husband gets migranes from many scents so that was never an option for me. I always use cheap baked bread/rolls. They make premade dinner rolls that need to be baked about 10 minutes. I would throw 2-3 rolls in the oven while I was doing a few last minute tasks and then turn off the oven and toss the buns in the trash. It leaves a nice lingering odor and no one really thinks twice about baking items.
Clean is very very important so wipe things down with nice smelling cleaners like windex or use a bit of febreeze but nothing super heavy when you have someone coming to see the house.(A house needs to smell nice and be shiny clean for me to want to purchase it).

    Bookmark   October 29, 2008 at 11:37PM
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Swifter floor cleaner! I've had several people compliment me on the smell of my home . . . and all I did was mop up the entryway floor!

    Bookmark   October 30, 2008 at 11:49PM
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One home I looked at had bread baking in a bread machine. It made the whole house smell good, but wasn't strong enough that I thought any bad odors were being covered up.

    Bookmark   October 31, 2008 at 1:51AM
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goodness, who knew how differently scents hit our senses!

we have both dogs and cats (and did i mention the fish? lol) so i am used to keeping things smelling fresh .. on a daily basis!!! how else to enjoy pets, i always wondered!

thanks for your continued remarks

    Bookmark   October 31, 2008 at 7:14AM
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I used to just put a few cinnamon sticks in water on the stove and simmered for a while before showings.

    Bookmark   October 31, 2008 at 9:40AM
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I found an air freshener that attaches to the air filter. I got the "clean" scent. The nice thing about this is when you run the fan, the scent diffuses throughout the whole house. It was a unintrusive way of "scenting" the house without candles/baking/sprays or whatever.

We got lots of commons about the lack of any odor in our house - good or bad. People seemed to like that.

    Bookmark   November 1, 2008 at 2:16PM
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I clean with Mrs. Meyers Clean Day products. They smell "clean plus" IMO. While we were selling, I made up batches of cookies, rolled up the dough and froze it for DIY slice and bake. Nine cookies in the oven and we were set for a showing. After gaining weight from cookies (we did have a lot of showings) I switched over to basmati rice in the rice cooker for close-to-dinner-time showings.

    Bookmark   November 11, 2008 at 8:48PM
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I love scents and use them all over my house. I love the Pier 1 reeds, Peach Mango defusers. Love them! I like Fabreeze Mountain Rain which makes the room smell so clean. I never really understood what a 'clean' smell is. Detergents, Windex, Pine Sol?
I hate those smells...


    Bookmark   November 11, 2008 at 11:17PM
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i remain in awe of all of our various reactions to scents! it appears just from all of our notes that there is no one 'good' or 'best' scent.

therefore, i just went with, no APPARENT scent! hope it helps sells our house!


    Bookmark   November 12, 2008 at 6:30AM
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Diane, funny story to update your post. Had a Realtor to my house today for the first time (we're planning to sell). Had all my Pier 1 difusers around as usual. We were talking and she asked whether we every got water in the basement (our house is on the side of a hill). I was telling her that we've never gotten water and how the water runs down the hill away from the house. She said she knew that because she is allergic to mold and would have smelled it immediately. She said she has problems with smells and perfumes, etc. She said my house smelled so fresh and felt so airy. She explained that some houses she goes in make her sick from the smells and appreciates a clean, fresh house like mine.

I thought of your post...


    Bookmark   November 12, 2008 at 10:37PM
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