In light of the new rental reforms from the Andrews Government, tenants will soon have more freedom over adopting four-legged friends while living in rental properties. However, just because you’re able to get a pet in a rental property, doesn’t mean it’s the right thing for your lifestyle. In this blog, Think Property address 5 key questions to ask yourself before getting a pet in your rental property.
1. What is your plan for the next few years?
As the old saying goes, a dog is for life, not just for Christmas. Pets are a long-term commitment, and shouldn’t be seen as an impulse purchase to amplify your Instagram photos. Are you planning to go traveling in the next few years? Did you want to move interstate? Look at your life as a whole and see whether a pet is a suitable addition. While the obstacle of landlord approval might no longer be an issue, there are other important considerations to be made to ensure your pet is well cared for.
2. How many hours a day are you able to be home with the pet?
On a similar token, how much time will you be able to dedicate to your pet on a day-to-day basis? If you work long hours or are regularly heading straight to happy hour from the office, how will you factor in playtime, walks and feeding for your furry new arrival? Make sure your daily schedule allows time to look after your pet.
3. Do you have enough space?
Animals take up more space than you might think – and keeping some animals in small spaces could be considered cruel. Will your pet be indoor or outdoor? Ensure you’ve got access to space for your pet to get fresh air and exercise, or that your indoor living areas are stimulating enough for indoor pets.
4. Will the pet disturb your neighbours?
How close do you live to your neighbours? Barking dogs or meowing cats could disturb them, and cause unnecessary conflict. Investigate how traveling noise could disrupt those around you before signing the adoption papers.
5. Are you able to finance vet care and emergencies?
Pets are more of a financial investment than just their upfront adoption fee. Do you have sufficient cash flow to fund vet visits, emergency procedures and day-to-day expenses? Pet food, litter, leads, and even temporary care when you go away can all add up. Make sure your income is capable of these out-of-pocket expenses to ensure your pet’s welfare.
While the restrictions around pets in rental properties will soon relax under new amendments to the Residential Tenancies Act, there are still procedures that you must follow. Speak to your property manager for tailored advice, and visit the Rent Fair Victoria website for more information on the upcoming changes.