Renting With Pets

Renting with petsDo you have a furry little friend living under the same roof as you? If you do, then you would be able to empathise when I say that our affection for them, and the companionship they bring, cannot easily be replaced.

Yet being unable to live without them means that moving homes can be quite a struggle. Everywhere you look seems to frown upon pet ownership, making house hunting harder than it already is.

Of course if it’s a small pet like a goldfish, a turtle or a hamster, it’s relatively easy to find a new home. Unfortunately, the search increases in difficulty when it comes to our pooches, kitties, bunnies and serpents.

When renting with pets, there are certain things that you should and should not do.

Start Early

Many homes do not allow pet ownership, so finding one that will even consider your application is hard. Furthermore by beginning your rental home search early, there is enough time to broaden the search into other suburbs if necessary.

Give information

Landlords or real estate agencies will appreciate it if you give them more information about your pet’s personality. Not only does it create the impression that you are a responsible pet owner, having these details may also ease some of their fears. It will also assist in their decision making process.

Some features about your pet’s behaviour that you would need to describe could be its size, whether it creates a lot of noise or if it has been known to damage furniture in the past. Other things like its vaccination record can be put on a pet reference.

Develop a good relationship with your current landlord

If you’ve been living with your pet for a while now, do your best to keep your pet out of trouble.


Well, when the rent increases and you choose to move houses, your current landlord’s resume about your pet will greatly influence your ability to find a new home.

Your landlord’s priority is always to maintain the condition of the property, therefore they are always concerned about the potential damage your pet may cost them. Hence, being able to show your landlord that your pet will not be a nuisance is valuable indeed.

Additionally, if you decide to acquire a pet after you have rented a place, you need to ASK FOR YOUR LANDLORD’S PERMISSION before you buy a pet.

Prepare a pet reference

Almost like a job reference, a pet reference should contain vital information and details about your pet. Most of all, it should include a reference from your current landlord. This will mostly be used as proof that your pet is well trained and will not be a nuisance to your future neighbours.

However, the reference is used to mainly reveal how your pet would disrupt the condition of the apartment. Therefore it will be wise to invest some time to properly house-train your pet – whether it is to stop them from barking too much at night, or to teach them to use the litter tray (instead of the couch) as the bathroom.

pet vaccineTraining school is another option if your pet is a bit more difficult to handle. The training certificate you receive at the end is also a good reference letter to have as well!

Your vet is another useful referee to have in your contacts. You should also provide evidence of flea or tick-checkups that your pet has had in the past year. It may not be required by your landlord, but it does help ease their doubts about your pet’s hygiene state.

Other crucial bits of pet references you need may include your pet’s temperament, whether they’ve been vaccinated, micro-chipped or desexed.

Don’t Assume

Never try to be a mind reader on where a potential landlord stands on pet ownership. The first few pertinent questions you ask them should be whether your pet can live in the apartment with you.

If for example, you suffer from mental illness and need a pet as part of therapy, some landlords may become more sympathetic to your plight.

Offer to pay extra rent

Most landlords are willing to bend their no pets allowed rule if you are willing to take the extra step to sweeten the deal.

Of course, money doesn’t solve all your problems. If the apartment that you’re renting has a strict no-pets policy, it is beyond your landlord’s control to bend the rules for you.

Have a solid written agreement

Whenever you have decided to change any contract details (such as paying extra rent to let your pet stay with you), always ask your landlord to give you written proof of your agreement. They should also outline your rights and responsibilities, allowing you two to work together more effectively.

Decide from your pet’s perspective

If you own a dog, try and imagine whether or not it would be happy living in a one-bedroom apartment with no balcony.

Right now, you are looking for an apartment that can accommodate the needs of both you and your pet. Hence you MUST always think and decide your rental home based on your pet’s preferences too.

It may mean a few extra sacrifices that you will need to make, but it’s something that you should be prepared to do for the happiness of your pet.

Clean the apartment after your leave

If your pet is notorious for leaving little surprises behind the armchair in the living room, be sure to thoroughly clean out any evidence before leaving.

This enables you to remain on your landlord’s good side, and it is only fair to the next tenant that they can enter a clean home.


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