Renting With Your Pet

Getting your own space is an exciting time for anyone! When you have a pet, you want to make sure your home is comfortable for you and your pet.


The first step before you sign a leasing agreement is to do your research. Most apartment complexes and property management companies have a website with basic information on the space you are looking to rent. Here is a list of common things you might find:


  • Limit on number of pets that can reside in the unit

  • Breed restrictions

  • Size/weight restrictions

  • Species restrictions (some places may not allow dogs or cats on the property)


If one or multiple of these apply to you, you will want to find another location that allows your pet(s)!


Many complexes and houses require additional money along with your deposit you place when you go to sign your lease agreement.

  • A pet deposit is money paid upfront that the property holds onto incase there is damage caused by the pet when you move out, and you have an opportunity to get that money back if there are no pet related damages.

  • A pet fee is a non-refundable fee paid upfront to allow the pet to live in the apartment/home. You will not have an opportunity to get this money back at the end of your lease.


Some properties also require a monthly pet fee each month on top of the pet deposit/fee you pay when you sign your lease agreement. This amount can range per month depending on the apartment complex rules as well as the amount of pets you have living with you. Most complexes add this on top of your monthly rental cost and any additional fees.


It is important to factor these additional costs into your total rent cost for your monthly budget to cover your furry friends!


Once you find a place that fits your family’s needs, you will meet with a property manager and finalize your lease.


Woohoo! You signed your lease for you new place to live! Like any new environment, it does take time for your pet to adjust to its new surroundings. New smells, noises and people may be stressful at first. Make sure you take time to help your pet adjust, and that he/she has comfort items (blanket, toy, tv or radio sounds, etc.) to help make the transition smoother.


Introducing your dog to your neighbors in the units around you will help them recognizes voices so they do not bark as much in your apartment. It is important to be mindful that you do have close neighbors, and understanding what can stress out your pet is important to help create the best living environment for you and your surrounding neighbors.


If you have a dog living with you, it helps to take walks around the apartment complex or neighborhood you live in to get used to the surroundings. PetMD recommends on average of 20-30 minutes of walking for dogs with a relatively good body condition. While rental units may be smaller in size than a normal residence, helping your dog get acclimated to the environment will allow for more enjoyable exercise for both of you.