How to Find Pet-Friendly Rentals

couple and two dogs in front of a pet-friendly rental house

Anyone who rents knows how difficult it can be to find a decent place to live. Looking for just the right rental house or apartment in the right location and at the right price is hard. And what if you need to find pet-friendly rentals?

Those of us who need to find a rental that allows pets face a special challenge. Be sure to allow plenty of time for your search and read all the fine print. Here are some tips to help you find a pet-friendly rental house or apartment. 

Where can I find a pet-friendly rental house or apartment?

You can start by gathering proof that you are a responsible person. A letter of recommendation from any or all of the following people can help a lot: your current landlord, your veterinarian, your trainer, your groomer, a neighbor or two, a pet sitter, or a dog walker. All of these people can contribute to the image of your pet as a valued, well-behaved family member.

Next, start checking in your local classified ads and ask local real estate agents about pet-friendly housing, and search online for “pet-friendly rentals.” Here are some websites that might be helpful:

If someone has a no-pets policy, don’t try to sneak in your pets, hoping that your landlord won’t notice or that your pet will charm the landlord into changing their policy. Instead, bring your references and offer to pay an extra security deposit. Some landlords are impressed by this level of planning and commitment. 

You can also offer to bring your pet to meet the landlord. To show how well you take care of your pet, bring vet records and local licenses if applicable.

What do I do after I've found a rental that allows pets?

Once you have secured a place, make sure that you have written permission to have a pet. A verbal agreement between you and the landlord is not enough. 

Some security deposits are nonrefundable, so you should discuss deposits or any other pet fees in advance. Again, get all the details in writing. 

Also, ask the landlord whether they've written house rules for pets. If so, make sure the rules are realistic for you and your pet. Ask for a copy of the rules.

More pet-friendly rental housing resources

  • People with pit bull terrier-type dogs can find information pertaining to rental properties at My Pit Bull is Family.
  • The Humane Society of the United States has resources for both tenants and landlords; search “pet friendly rentals” on its site.
  • The ASPCA also has resources for renters with pets; search “pet friendly housing” on its site.

Our pets depend on us to find a place where we can live comfortably and happily together. With an investment of some time and effort, you will find a great pet-friendly home.