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Don’t let your equity go up in smoke if your home smells like cigarettes! I was out showing houses today and I showed a house that had been smoked in. The first signs of previously smoked in homes are plug in air fresheners. I do not know what it is about these wafty devils but I always get suspicious when I smell one in a home or see multiple units plugged in throughout a property. Sometimes it’s a smell that you just can’t place, but as you poke around a home you can definitely locate hot spots in a previously smoked-in home. This kind of smoke contamination is called Thirdhand Smoke and can cause health problems for non smokers if not removed from a home before you sell. 

How can you avoid toxifying your home? Not smoking inside to begin with will leave you less issues to deal with when you go to sell your home. It’s preferable to smoke in the garage if you have to smoke inside at all but even then make sure the space is thoroughly ventilated. 

If your house already smells like smoke, here are some solutions you can try to freshen up the air inside your home. 

Wash your walls

Paint your washed walls with Kilz brand paint 

Remove or clean carpets

Clean your HVAC Replace lightbulbs and light fixtures that have yellowed

Hire a company to Ozone Blast your home

Bleach hard tile surfaces

Place bags of activated charcoal throughout the home

When you smoke inside the sticky nicotine residue permeates almost every surface so it’s important to strip down any exposed surfaces, clean any areas that can’t be replaced and utilize air fresheners like charcoal, apple cider vinegar or baking soda to absorb any remaining funkiness. No one recommends plug-ins or aerosol air fresheners since they will just mask any bad smells and don’t deal with the root of the problem. 

When it comes to selling a home that has evidence of thirdhand smoke the chances are your home value will be reduced by 30%. To retain value in your home, it is recommended to follow a rigorous approach to cleaning the home and chances are you will spend a fraction of the money you would have lost by doing nothing and selling your dank digs as-is. 

If you need help figuring out what to do with your home, get in touch with me. I have decades of experience and have tried and true methods to help you protect one of your biggest assets.