18 Aug 2011
If you have a pet and have been renting or looking to rent, you’ll be familiar with the seemingly endless process of applying for and securing a rental property. When you’re in competition with other suitable candidates without pets, it can sometimes seem impossible to win your dream rental. There are, however, a few tips I can give you to get you on the right path to applying smarter, not harder.
Be Direct: While you shouldn’t be afraid to apply for properties that do not specify if pets are allowed, you can save yourself a lot of time by sounding it out with the agent. Be honest, explain your situation and your type and age of pet, and be sure to call prior to the inspection – if you’re going for a popular property, other people will have their applications ready on the day.
Get Typing: There are some great free services online to give you the leg up in finding and applying for rentals. www.petfriendlyrentals.com.au has a wonderful free pet resume service. This might sound a bit strange, but by including a representation of your pet on paper – detailing training and medical histories for your dog – makes you look as responsible as you are in the application.
Ask for a reference: If you’ve had a positive experience in your current property, and always pass your inspections with flying colours, then don’t be afraid to ask for a written reference from your property manager.
Offer Your Paw: It always helps to mention that the property manager or owner are welcome to meet your pet before they take up residence in their investment – though this isn’t advisable if your dog is excited by guests!
The reality is that it’s the bad behaviour of some that ruin it for the well-behaved majority – once a landlord with an investment property has been badly burnt by a negative experience with a horror tenant and their misbehaved pets; they’re far more likely to ask their agent to put “Sorry No Pets” on their listing. You can help prevent or break this cycle for someone by showing them what a great experience renting to someone with a pet can be. Of course, if you get the property make sure you always pay your rent on time or early – so that they don’t regret taking a risk by taking on a tenant with a dog or cat!