Looking for a new apartment is never easy, especially if you have a dog. Most landlords have strict policies and hefty security deposits. Thankfully, there are pet-friendly apartments out there. The key to finding one is to perform a targeted search while putting your best foot forward.
Here are some of the tips you can use to increase your chances of getting a dog-friendly apartment.
Pay a pet deposit
Most apartment rental listings don’t advertise if they’re pet-friendly because landlords aren’t convinced yet whether or not to accept rent with pets. But you can do something about it by offering to pay a pet deposit or getting liability coverage through your pet health insurance provider.
A pet deposit is like a rental deposit. But the money will be used to fix the damages to the property caused by your pet. When you pay this deposit up front, you’re showing to the landlord that you’re not going to misuse the property, and you’re assuring him that your pet won’t do any damage to it. Insurance coverage for damage caused by your pet will also prove to your landlord that you are adding additional protection for their rental property. Doing so will help ease his mind.
Ask your friends
If you’re moving to a new city and want to live in a dog-friendly apartment, you can ask your ex-landlord for a good reference letter. It’s a good way to endorse you to your prospective landlords, and you’ll also increase your chances of living in a pet-friendly rental. A glowing reference that lauds you as an ideal tenant will make landlords take notice.
On the other hand, if you haven’t lived in a rental apartment or house yet, you can still look for a reference elsewhere. One of them is your veterinarian. He can give a good reference for your dog and can confirm its gentle and non-destructive behavior. Most landlords would consider accepting a tenant with a well-behaved dog.
When you’re applying online, make sure to submit a beautiful photo of your pet. Your pet must look calm, adorable and clean.
You can also show the landlord your pet’s vaccination certificates and other pet-related paperwork. This will assure the landlord that your pet’s health is in excellent condition. It’ll also remind him that you’re not just an ideal tenant but also a responsible pet owner.
If that doesn’t work and the property manager isn’t fully convinced, you can suggest a trial period of six months. This way, he can see how you and your pet will behave in his building. From there, you can make some adjustments to the rent and agreements if needed.
Ask the experts
If you’ve done your best to find the best dog-friendly apartment to no avail, you can chat with your local veterinarian, technician, staff at your local animal shelter, or other pet owners you meet at the park. They may know apartments in your area that accept tenants with pets—they might even live in one!
As mentioned earlier, it’s not easy to find a perfect rental for you, especially if you have pets. That said, you should take your time and study what compromises you can take just to get a suitable apartment that you and your pet can live for several years. You must plan accordingly so you won’t regret your decision later on.
About the author: Catrin Cooper is a freelance writer from San Francisco. She loves writing about marketing, self-development and real estate. In a free time, Catrin enjoys traveling and yoga.