How to build a pet resume to secure a pet-friendly rental
Let’s face it: it’s hard to find a rental property in Australia right now, even if you don’t own any pets. When you add your fur-family into the picture, it may seem close to impossible. Even with recent changes in body corporate laws in some cities, for example in Sydney, the supply of pet-friendly rentals is still small. Ultimately, it’s down to the landlord and their willingness to accept pets into their apartment or house.
Once you do find a property that allows pets and is within your budget, you will face another problem: competition from other rental-seekers, many of which don’t have pets. Consciously or unconsciously, landlords may prefer applications without pets. The overall perception is that pets are more likely to damage a property, so even the pet-friendly landlords may opt for tenants without pets. Mission impossible, right?
One thing can that you can do to dramatically improve your chances of finding a rental is put together a pet resume. Landlords are looking for tenants that 1) will pay their rent on time and 2) won’t damage their property. By providing a pet resume, you will demonstrate your responsibility as a pet owner and this will increase their confidence regarding point two.
So, what is a pet resume? Basically, it’s a compilation of information about your pet, that demonstrates both your pet’s qualities and your accountability. Here are some of the items you should include when building your pet resume, to highlight both these elements:
- Cover Letter: This is your opportunity to summarise your pet and inject some fun and creativity into your pet resume. Include information about their history, personality and even a photo for extra character.
- Vaccinations & Vet Certificates: Showing that your pet is up-to-date with their vet visits, is micro-chipped and de-sexed will demonstrate that you’re organised and on top of looking after your pet.
- Council Registrations: In most cities, registering your pet with the council is mandatory, and your landlord will want to know that you are following your council’s requirements.
- Training Certificates: If your dog has done puppy preschool, obedience training or other sports such as agility or fly-ball, include their certificates in your pet resume. This will demonstrate that they are obedient and are less likely to misbehave and disrupt the neighbours.
- References from past landlords: Get your past landlords to write a reference letter for your pet. A recommendation from them will go a long way, especially if you can demonstrate that your pet has been a fantastic tenant in the past.
- References from others who know your dog: If there are other people who know your dog well, such as dog-walkers, pet-sitters or even friends, a letter from them can be used as character references for your pet and their behaviour.
One other point to consider is offering an additional pet bond in your rental application. A pet bond will give your landlord reassurance that if something does happen, you will take the accountability and pay for your pet’s damage.
Best of luck with the house-hunting! Once you find and settle into your fur-home, you’ll be able to focus on the fun things, such as setting up your house to make your pet feel at home.