Landlords can often be hesitant to rent to tenants with pets. From dog bites to noise complaints, it can seem like there’s always a reason for landlords to be wary. This can make the process of searching for a new home difficult. That’s why we’re here – we’ve put together your complete guide to renting with pets to make the process simple and easy! 

How to find landlords that accept pets 

The first step to finding the perfect home for you and your pet is finding one that is pet-friendly. There are many ways you can go about finding rentals that allow pets such as:

  1. Searching online – include keywords like “pet-friendly” or “dog friendly” in your search.
  2. Walk around your desired neighborhood and look at “For Rent” signs – this one is simple because these kinds of properties are often managed by DIY landlords that can adjust a bit on a lease or agreement (this allows room to have a clause for pets). 
  3. Contact local shelters – shelters such as the Humane Society will often be able to provide advice and available rentals to anyone who has a furry friend. 
  4. Check out the local pet-friendly parks – parks are a great place to meet fellow animal lovers and see if they know of any pet-friendly properties. 

What to look for when shopping for a rental property with pets 

When shopping for a new home with pets, there are several factors that need to be considered:

  1. Look for property that is near dog parks, trails, or other walkable activities. This is especially important if you are looking at apartments where there isn’t much space for your dog to get much-needed exercise. 
  2. Consider the proximity to the vet and boarding house in case of emergency.
  3. A carpet-free rental will eliminate the chance of staining and make clean up easy.
  4. A large backyard or an open floor plan apartment can help give your pet plenty of space to stretch out, this is especially important when you have larger pets.
  5. A handheld/removable showerhead can make bath time easier and can help keep the entire space cleaner.

How to advocate for your pet

Studies have shown 31 percent of pet owners have had trouble finding an apartment that allows pets at all, let alone an apartment that allows larger animals or more “aggressive” breeds. If you’ve found a place you love, but the landlord is giving you a hard time for having a pet, here’s what you can do to advocate for you and your pet:

  1. Talk to your landlord about your history as an excellent tenant.
  2. Show that your pet is in great health and not at risk of spreading disease by getting an endorsement from your veterinarian.
  3. Talk to your landlord about renters insurance to reduce the building’s liability.
  4. Introduce your pet to your potential landlord. This is a great opportunity for your property manager to see how well behaved your animal is and why they could be a great addition to the building.
  5. Go the extra mile and create a “pet profile” for your animal – complete with their name, age, breed, personality, training, health, and more. 

Before the move 

As soon as you sign the lease, there are few things you can do to get your home ready for your furry friend:

  1. Pet-proof your rental – this will prevent issues when you first move in. Make sure items that could be dangerous to your pet are out of reach. 
  2. Install air filters that catch pet hair.
  3. Patch holes in fences to prevent escapes – especially if your furry friend is on the smaller side!
  4. Take note of any potentially harmful plants in the area that your animal could easily access.
  5. Let your pet visit the new place before move-in to get them familiar with the space.

During the move 

Now for the fun part – move in time! This can be stressful for your pet, so here are our best tips to make sure move-in is a breeze: 

  1. Pick up some new toys and have plenty of treats on hand to occupy them during the process.
  2. Keep your pet in their crate while moving to prevent anxiety. 
  3. Surround them with familiar objects like their bed or toys.
  4. Show your pet where they will eat, sleep, and use the restroom so they have a sense of the layout. 

After the move 

Keeping your pet safe and healthy is crucial once you are completely moved in. Here’s how you can do this:

  1. Spend plenty of time with them – this will help them associate good memories in the new home.
  2. Help them get excited about their new home by playing with them and offering fun treats.
  3. Integrate daily walks or trips to the dog park – this will allow them to socialize and expend that pent-up energy.
  4. Establish routines in your new home – try to keep their bedtime hours and feeding schedule consistent in the new home. 

Lastly, your landlord will most likely require you to purchase renters insurance to provide financial protection against damage to personal property, burglary, and injury. As a pet owner, you should consider adding liability protection that covers you in the event that your pet injures someone. If this is the case for you, contact our team at Webb Insurance Group – we’ll be able to help you find a policy that fits your needs and budget!