Finding an apartment in New York City is enough hassle when it’s just for humans, but when you throw in a four-legged friend, it’s even more challenging. Even when renters do find pet-friendly apartments, they run into obstacles such as breed and weight restrictions. However, there are ways to make your apartment search less stressful and more productive.
Have References Available
Just like when you’re applying for a job, your pet may have to have an interview to move into an apartment, and you’ll need stellar references to get them accepted. When you’re putting together references for your pet, consider statements from past landlords or neighbors, your veterinarian, and your groomer. Also, include any proof of obedience classes your dog was in.
Finally, provide documentation on the health of your pet. Many landlords worry about fleas and property damage. Provide documents from your veterinarian that shows your pet is taking flea prevention medicine. Be sure to provide documents that show he or she is spayed or neutered, and therefore is calmer and less likely to destroy property.
Be Ready to Pay More
Unfortunately, there’s no getting around the fact that you will pay more for having a pet live with you. Most buildings will typically require a pet deposit above and beyond the regular security deposit. In New York, the average pet deposit is around $500; however, you can try to negotiate this down by proving you’re a responsible pet owner.
Use All Your Resources
The best people to ask about pet-friendly housing options are other pet owners. Visit the dog park and ask if they can offer tips on which buildings to look at, and the best property managers to speak to. Additionally, it’s possible that the Humane Society can offer information about apartments that accept pets. There are also websites devoted specifically to maintaining lists of pet-friendly apartment buildings around the city.
Get Creative with Pictures
Image via Flickr by overdrive_cz
When Angela Allarde and her husband were looking for a new apartment with their 13-month-old daughter and their dog, they knew they were going to run into problems. The rescue agency where they got the dog called him an American Staffordshire terrier, but most people considered him a pit bull. After getting turned down multiple times because of the breed of their dog, the Allardes were losing hope. Then, Angela had the bright idea to take pictures of their dog playing with their young daughter for their interviews.