How to Find a Pet-Friendly Apartment for Your Next Move?

A majority of the rental properties a tenant will approach are far from pet-friendly and that’s why it’s so hard to find pet friendly apartments in the U.S.

In fact, may it be the letting agencies or the many landlords who offer rentals, but  more often than not, there’s a ‘no pet’ clause included to the tenancy agreement.

Unfortunately, not many are eager nor open to accommodate pet-owners.

Hence, that’s the reason why finding even a small pet-friendly apartment is not an easy task. You might put pets over everything but not everyone feels the same way.

Your adorable cat or puppy is close to your heart, but that will often contradict common landlord requirements.

The scenario hasn’t been able to slow down the pet ownership rates in the U.S.

Research shows that up to 85 million families were pet owners in 2017 alone and according to another paper, 60% of Americans are the owners of at least one pet where 65% of them are Millennials and 71% among Gen X.

Isn’t it a shocking statistic in such an opposing context?

But why can’t so many people find the right home?

Check our further reads on what makes different generations special:

So, all that you need to do is to act smart and make your hunt for pet-friendly rental as hassle-free as possible.

But first:

What should you know about moving with pets?

  • Besides the standard questions before signing a lease, you might have to face a lot of negation and debate coming from a landlord prior to moving in the house/apartment with a pet. The housing market is a tough one and getting a pet-friendly apartment is often a hefty and tiresome experience. Most  rental owners have zero to little idea of the general do’s and don’ts for living with pets. They often just take the facts all negatively and assume that allowing a pet would have their apartment end up as a total mess. This is definitely not okay but unfortunately, it’s how things are.
  • Neighbors have a say too. Suppose, a landlord is fine with a pet accompanying you as you move in the rental but your neighbors are not. In such a scenario, if people living in the building disagree then it will mean a firm  ‘no-no’ for you and your pet. However, if the neighbors council agrees but the landlord doesn’t, there is still hope for you. Brace yourself and proceed to further negotiations.
  • You might have to pay a few extra bucks to find, rent and live in a pet-friendly apartment.   
  • You also might have to pay the rent for additional months in advance. A peculiar option to compensate is to use discount codes from websites like Dealslands
  • As a matter of the fact, the chance of finding a pet-friendly rental correlates with the count and size of your four-legged friend(s). The bigger a dog is, the more of an issue it could be. You have 5 cats? Expect your landlord to fuss over fur leftovers throughout the property.
  • Research for parks nearby your desired location that have off-leash areas. That said, keep in mind that there might be other domestic or wildlife animals like horses, deer, rabbits, squirrels, other dogs, of course,  and etc.
  • If the city where you plan to move has a pet-friendly reputation, then you will surely find pubs, restaurants, and even shops that welcome dogs.
  • Public transport should not be an issue. It is possible to ride public transports along your beloved Bruno sitting beside you.

If you are about to look for a pet-friendly apartment, you need to arm yourself with patience for you might have to cope with low vacancy rates for those best pet-friendly flats. That’s why you should start exploring your options at the earliest stage possible. You should carefully plan the move and be prepared all time.

Choose your desired location wisely, organize your time, funds and use the right know how and tips.

Take advantage of online tools

pet friendly apartments

Our platform allows to to easily search and find a pet friendly rental.

Search for pet friendly apartments at Rentable here.

“According to the ASPCA, housing is one of the main reasons people move their pets, whether it’s due to a lack of space or issues with the property manager. If you’re planning to adopt, use Rentable’s cat and dog filters to quickly sift through the largest inventory of pet-friendly housing.”

Pick the right location – 200% crucial

Whoa! You’ve finally found a great apartment that is near to your office and will also allow pets.

Lear more about the most pet friendly cities in the US.

But don’t rush to sign the lease immediately. Sometimes, a pet-friendly abode perfect for you  might not be the best for your pet to live in.

You should set some time aside to do a bit of research on what that neighborhood is like before taking the final call. A couple of major aspects that you must consider are:

  • The presence of pet-friendly parks within a walking distance.
  • Reliable dog daycare centers where you could leave your pet while absent.

Interestingly enough, there is an uprise in pet-friendly improvements and services being introduced to pet-friendly properties. Some of these are grooming shops, training centers and playgrounds, dog care and etc.

If you’re willing to pay a bit of extra, both yours pet(s) and you will feel at home.

Wrap up the perfect pet resume

To apply for a pet-friendly apartment in such a competitive market is no less than landing a new job for yourself. As your pet is the candidate here, you should prepare the proper resume for it.

Don’t forget to detail its age, certifications, breed, medical information and any other fact that will highlight the best of your pet.

Also, it is smart to reach out to any previous dog walkers, your former landlord, trainers, vets and kindly ask of a recommendation letter. It will surely boost up your application before the prospective landlord.

If the landlord is still not convinced, ask him to set up a pet interview. He/she will be able to connect with your tamed friend in a much more efficient way.

Use the Rentable tool to make your own pet resume.

Prove yourself as the reliable pet owner

If you provide more documentation attesting to your application as a responsible and reliable pet owner, you will surely gain more points before your landlord and better your chances of renting.


Here’s a simple listicle of the major documents that you could compile and provide along with your pet-friendly tenancy application:

  1. A reference letter from your existing landlord or condominium association which substantiate you as a responsible pet owner.
  2. A written document to prove that your pet has been trained or if it is currently undergoing a course.
  3. A signed and sealed letter from your veterinarian which reads that you’ve been meticulous in the medical care of your pet. Get the document from the veterinary where your pet has been spayed and vaccinated against rabies.
  4. You need to do a good promotion of yourself. The pet owners who are responsible enough also prove to be amazing tenants. As they have to usually search a lot for the right place to live in, pet caregivers are pretty much anticipated to stay longer in one place. So, always let your future landlord know that you adore living with your pet and find it is a privilege, and definitely not as a right.

Pets could qualify as emotional support

Of course, seeing eye dogs help their owners in obvious ways. On the other hand, a service pet can be of assistance help with emotional disorders which aren’t evident.

If you have disturbing psychological issues and your pet serves as a source of comfort, you might get covered under the Fair Housing Act without even any of your prior knowledge.

Unfortunately, the public lacks education in this matter and it’s unlikely for you to come across a letting agency with specialized and dedicated desk to address disabilities. This is something out of their scope.

If you suffer from sickness related to emotional instability, any landlord who denies you and your pet the right to move in could end up as a subject of discrimination charges.

In such cases, a tamed animal is not only considered as just a pet, but it rather becomes a medical requirement.

Demonstrate that you are prepared to equip a pet conductive bedroom

Let your landlord know you can make your bedroom pet-friendly all by yourself with as much as precautions possible. Start by finding the perfect mattress. Guides like Mattress Advisor can help narrow your search and waste of time. While there are other benefits to sleeping with your pet, like decreased stress levels, precautions can come to your advantage. Make sure your mattress is naturally resistant to allergens and structurally sound (especially if you are sleeping with a big canine) and at best, Feng-shui friendly.

All-natural latex mattresses tend to be a good options for people who sleep with their pet because they are naturally resistant to bacteria. But it’s not a bad idea to also use a mattress protector for extra comfort and safety.

Offer to pay a pet deposit

There are many buildings throughout the country which would allow pets if guaranteed via a security deposit.

So, if you find that a potential landlord is reluctant in allowing your pet, offer him/her this option. It will give them a sigh of relief about scratched floors, broken furniture, and stains in the future, and also guarantee that you’re absolutely confident with your pet.

Offer a free flea treatment prior to you moving out

This idea comes from the pest control expert Mike S. Gaskin. If the landlord before you is relentless, try to offer a free flea treatment at the end of the lease, right before you and your pet moving out. Adding such a clause to the rental agreement will guarantee to the property owner (or manager) that you’re 100% willing to take full responsibility for the consequences of you having a pet.

Prove your ongoing pest control

To agree over a guaranteed professional service prior to you one day moving out can is among the mighty weapons pet-loving renters should use.

But what if your landlord is worried over ongoing pest control? If the promise over a flea treatment at the end of your future lease is not enough, testify before your prospective landlord that you’re also well-prepared for ongoing care.

This means to assure the property owner or manager that you’re using products such as Pyrethrin-based flea dips for pets on a regular (and scheduled) basis. To show a simple recurring reminder on your smartphone could the dash of proof to tip the scale in your favor.

Follow the law and use it to your advantage

Your landlord shouldn’t bring up pets as an issue if you’ve already spent a month or few in the property.

According to the New York city law of 1983, most of the renters can keep their pets with them if they lived uncovered for more than three months in the apartment. There are no lawsuits filed during that time.

If the lease that you’re going to sign is not mentioning the pet policy in a clear way, then it’s local law that matters. Hence, make sure that you are well aware of all your rights as a tenant beforehand.

Choose your pet size wisely (if possible)

In case you still don’t own a pet but about to get one, you should pick a species and breed that won’t bother a landlord. Although pet-friendly, some buildings will have a weight limit and any dog above it would be unwelcome.

“This is why I love pugs. I’ve always had less problems with my landlord than people with bigger dogs. Pugs are note only great in size but are far from “yappy” and shed less fur. These are the arguments that always helped.” says Ronnie Lawson-Jones from JugDog.

Find out what are the best dog breeds for apartments – here.

The normal weight range for pets is somewhere between 20 and 50 pounds for most of the places around the country. So, if your pet is within the limit, it shouldn’t be much worrisome for you.

Thinking logically, these policies do make a lot of sense and that’s why it’s best to stand up to requirements and find a great apartment to rent!

Final remarks

To find a pet-friendly apartment can be a challenging and hefty endeavor. As rent prices change and available vacation come and go, pet-owners have to approach the manner in a thorough and organized manner.