I see many people online asking whether it is possible to rent a house with a dog, and as a dog/pug owner, I thought I could put in my two cents.
Yes, of course, you can rent a house with a dog.
OK, sure, it can be more challenging and stressful to find houses & properties for rent that accept pets. We know this is true from our own experience. Before we bought our own house, we spent about 10 years renting houses. And every time, we were looking for a new house to rent, the very first thing we had to consider was whether the landlords would accept renting with our two pugs.
But we always managed to find dog-friendly houses – pug-friendly for that matter.
Here are some of the tips I can give if you are looking to rent with dogs.
Find out if the landlord accepts pets
This information might be specified in the property listings that you are looking at in the property portals or estate agents’ websites – if not, ring the agents up to find out. Along the lines of “Hey, we are looking for a 2-bed house that would accept our two lovely pugs. Can you help?” It is often the case that some agencies are willing to go the extra mile to help you find dog-friendly rental properties.
Start your house hunt early
As a pet owner tenant, you will have a narrower choice and this could mean you may struggle to find the right rental property quickly. So make sure you give yourself plenty of time.
OK, so we found a house that we really wanted to rent – the perfect location and the perfect size. The problem was that the landlord didn’t accept pets. So we negotiated, and you can try some of these too!
• Offer a higher deposit
By offering to put down higher deposits, you are giving them a peace of mind that they would be covered should any damages occur to the property. One thing you need to make sure is, legally how much deposit landlords can charge. For example, in the UK, landlords cannot charge more than five weeks’ rent. So this can hugely depend on where you live.
• Convince your landlord
By showing the landlord that your dog is house-trained and well behaved, you might be able to convince them to allow renting with pets.
• Include additional items in the contract
You may want to request to include additional items in the contract. For example, by promising that, the carpets and floors will be replaced or hire a professional cleaner at the end of your tenancy, which you will cover the cost for, you are easing the landlords’ worries.
Be flexible with which location to rent
Without a doubt, rental property choices are more limited for tenants with pets/dogs. You can increase your chance of renting a house that you love by being flexible with where you rent. For example, you may have a wider and better choice in rural areas than in city-centre locations etc. Be flexible.
Put yourself in a classified ad
There are many landlords who do not use agents or property portals to market their rental houses. You can place an advert yourself in the wanted section of the local newspaper or classified websites like Craigslist and Gumtree (UK). Just an idea.
As obvious as it sounds, this is very important. Make sure the landlords are aware of the fact that you have dogs. Don’t hide it – that can easily backfire if you do, and you will have an even bigger problem. I have personally seen this happen and definitely not something you would want to go through.
If you are already in a rented house and thinking of getting a dog, talk to your landlord first for their approval, and if they do, make sure it is in a written contract. Don’t just assume!
Why don’t landlords allow pets?
Let’s look at some of the reasons why some (many) landlords don’t accept pets.
Landlords may consider dogs to be unhygienic, for reasons such as; Toilet accidents in the house, drooling on the carpets and soft furnishings, dragging their bottoms on the carpets, mucky feet on the carpets, dog hair everywhere, also there is the destructive side of some dogs too which would be highly off-putting to a landolord such as; Chewing the woodwork and other items around the house, scratching doors and wooden flooring, ripping up carpets and other soft furnishings.
To round up
So to answer the question, it is totally possible to rent a house with dogs or any other types of pets – as long as it’s not something ridiculous like these people who are living with a buffalo below.
Or these ones including a woman who happily watches TV with a Capybara in her living room, and a man who lives with his pet rhino iguana.
OK, that’s enough for now.
On a serious note, let me know if you have any more tips for renting with dogs and, if you have a story about renting a house with dogs, we would love to hear your experience. You can email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or simply leave a comment below.