Getting Around the ‘No Pets’ Renting Policy

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Feb 20 2017
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As the final countdown on your current lease gets underway, frantic google searches for a pet-friendly apartment are stressing you out. Not one complex in your price range accepts pets, and you’ll be damned if you surrender your loveable pup to the local humane society.


If the landlord simply took the time to meet your dog and saw how well-trained, groomed and friendly he is, they would definitely bend the rules and let you and your furry roommate move in. Instead of accepting the ‘no pets’ policy, challenge the rules, show your prospective landlord that having a dog on the property will brighten every other tenants’ day.


If you really want to move into a complex with an unknown or steadfast ‘no pets’ policy, don’t give up; try out the following persuasive techniques to bring your four-legged roomie home.


  1. When in doubt, just ask. If the apartment complex does not advertise whether they allow pets, ask. If the leasing agent or landlord expresses uncertainty about allowing pets, ask to set up a meet and greet with your pet.


To make sure the landlord gets a well-rounded introduction, bring a pet resume, veterinary documentation and an obedience school training certificate. If it looks like your dog is well provided for and takes commands, the landlord will be more receptive to allowing the two of you to move onto the property.


  1. Offer to pay a larger safety deposit. A big reason landlords don’t allow pets is for fear that they’ll destroy the apartment, costing the complex thousands of dollars in repairs. If you offer to pay a larger deposit to cover any damages your pet should cause to the property, management will see that you are willing to work with them and take financial responsibility for your pet should something happen.


  1. Offer to purchase renters insurance. As noted above, complex management is less likely to accept pets because they are concerned about property damage. Another prime concern is the pet’s temperament. If your pet should bite another tenant, that tenant has grounds to sue you and the apartment complex for allowing your dog on the property. Renters insurance offers property damage and personal injury liability protection. If your dog should feel provoked and bite someone, renters insurance will cover the costs of the incident, including medical fees and litigation. You can find cheap coverage too when you compare renters insurance online. What’s another $10 a month for the comfort of your pup?


  1. Your dog is a registered service animal. If you suffer from depression, anxiety, seizures or other disabilities and your dog works to help ease those issues, apartment complexes are not allowed to turn you away, even if they have a specific ‘no pets’ policy. The Americans with Disabilities Act specifies that people with disabilities have the right to a service animal and cannot be denied living spaces. Show the landlord your dog’s paperwork. If the landlord asks for more, including documents detailing your condition, you are not required to share that information with them. In fact, you have grounds to sue the complex for discrimination should they ask for more documentation or make it difficult for you to sign the lease.


  1. Don’t look at listings with a ‘no pets’ policy. Before finding the “perfect” apartment only to learn that the complex doesn’t allow pets, narrow your search to include only complexes that allow pets. Why torture yourself with things you can’t have?


Have faith, you’ll find the perfect apartment.

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