Definition of "Pet rent"

Denise Mortenson real estate agent
Denise Mortenson, Real Estate Agent Turpin Realtors

If you’re a renter and you own a pet, you might be familiar with the term pet rent. There has been a lot of discussion about the meaning of pet rent and controversy as it isn’t a synonym of a pet deposit, so we are here to explain what the meaning of pet rent is, if it’s legal and why it is charged if you already paid a pet deposit. So strap in because we are going to settle the animal lover’s conundrum once and for all.

What is Pet Rent?

The pet rent definition is a sort of monthly fee that allows you to have a pet inside your rental that is completely legal. In other words, it is your pet’s monthly rent. Like you, your pet will inhabit the apartment along with you especially if you live in an unfriendly city where your pet is your best friend and if you were thinking that a pet doesn’t have to pay rent, we apologize for having to burst your bubble. As a pet owner, I can safely say that I’d rather pay pet rent than have to live without my pet and I understand the reasoning behind it.

Pet-friendly rentals charge this pet rent to allow their renters to house a pet inside of the unit. However, as any animal lover might know, animals can cause wear and tear in a home, which is why it was implemented. A pet can create damages inside your apartment especially if you’re used to pampering them. From muddy carpets to scratched-up walls, doors, or furniture, especially owners of large dogs or cats know the effect a pet can have on the interior design of a home. The landlord needs some type of coverage for these potential repairs and that’s why pet rents became so popular. 

What’s the Difference between Pet Rent and Deposit?

So if pet rent covers damages that your furry friend might inflict on the apartment, what are pet deposits supposed to cover. Well, they cover the same things, but, and this is a big but, while the deposit is refundable, the pet rent is not. Also, while a pet deposit does also cover damages, some damages can not be covered by it which is why pet rents were implemented.

The biggest difference between pet deposits and pet rents is the actual value of each. While the monthly pet rent is 1% to 2% of your monthly rent which can translate to $10 to $60 per month, pet deposits are between $100 and $600. Important to note here is that state and local laws may differ and in some cases, landlords may not be allowed to demand a pet deposit as well so make sure to check.


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