10 Tips Pet Owners Should Consider When Looking to Rent

renting-with-dogWhen the time comes to find a crash pad to rent, owning an animal can amplify the difficulty of this process. It’s clear that taking on the task of finding pet-friendly housing has proven to be a very difficult endeavor, especially when you’re trying to land a place that allows large breed dogs. Here are some helpful tips to consider that will make the search process a bit easier:


1)      Be upfront. It is never a good idea to lie to your landlord about pet ownership. Should they find out you are keeping pets in your apartment without their knowledge, you could find yourself faced with ugly fees or worse- eviction.  Don’t hide your furry friends!


2)      Don’t rush.  It’s definitely good practice (and saves headaches) when you begin your apartment search well before the time you are required to move.  It can take twice the time (if not longer) to land a reasonably priced, pet-friendly new pad.


3)      Make full use of your resources. Contact your local humane society or animal rescues and ask if they have any resources available that will supply you with valuable information on pet-friendly landlords and rental communities.  Also, when using apartment search sites such as Apartment Living Guide or Craigs List, be sure to customize your search so that only pet-friendly listings show up.  This will save you lots of time!


4)      Be a responsible pet parent.  This is an obvious one, but worth mentioning nonetheless.  Consider your preparedness to live up to a landlord’s standards when it comes to living there with your pet.  Do you take your pet outside for regular potty breaks to prevent compromising the apartment’s condition? Are you around enough to control excessive barking, chewing or destructing? If you answered no to either of these, it’s time you considered changing your ways. Pet ownership is a huge responsibility and you must commit everything to your animals.


5)      Offer an introduction.  Bringing your pet in to meet the landlord or property manager can also be a good strategy. This gives you the opportunity to show off your animal’s obedience, cleanliness and manners. You will increase your chances of landing a rental if the manager of the complex is confident in the good habits of your pet.


6)      Be ready to pay more than non pet owners.  The unfortunate fact of the matter is that pet owners simply pay more for rent than do non pet owners.  You are held more liable and have a greater responsibility of upholding the condition of your apartment, so you are charged more in rent to pay for the risk you may be seen as in the property manager’s eyes.



7)      For rental postings that do not specify their pet policy, ask.  In some cases, you may come across apartment listings that do not specify information on their pet policy.  Many times, this is because it is determined on a case-by-case basis.  You can see this as an opportunity to inquire about the property (if you really like everything else about it) and ask the monotonous question “Are pets ok?” If you get a yes, great! If you get a vague answer, take it as an your opportunity to persuade them by using the tips we talked about here.



8)      Brag about your pet.  If your dog has taken part in training classes, have documentation available to show your prospective landlord, such as training class paperwork or certificates.  If your dog really has a knack for training and good behavior, consider enrolling them in AKC Good Citizen training.  This is an extended training program which promotes good obedience practices and gives your dog an A+ reputation.  That can look great to landlords when making decisions on whether to rent to you or not.


9)      Provide References.  Getting a note or letter from a previous landlord stating the great manners of your dog as well as your responsible ownership can really speak volumes.  You can also look to your veterinarian or a dog trainer to provide these valuable references for you.



10)   Offer to buy renter’s insurance or put down an extra deposit.  If the landlord you are speaking to doesn’t already require an extra pet deposit and is on the fence about renting to you, offer to pay one. If anything should happen, the deposit ensures they’ll have the money to clean up the apartment.  Also, if you have renter’s insurance, this will give the property owner even more peace of mind.  The liability portion of the renter’s insurance should cover injuries caused by your pet. Victims of pet-related incidents have a far better chance of winning a claim against the pet owner and will typically come after the owner and not the landlord in these cases. Finally, having insurance shows the animal is safe is in which is in itself protection for the landlordThe insurance in some cases also covers damage to property. Moral of the story: insurance is a good thing!


Take these tips into consideration when searching for a new apartment for you and your furry friend and you’ll be on track to finding that new home faster than you can say “Fido”.


Bailey Martin currently blogs for Apartment Living Guide, the online search source that Guides You To Your New Home.