Looking for a new apartment? Have your pick from Canada’s huge real estate market. Looking for a new apartment that is also pet-friendly? Well, that’s going to prove to be a headache of its own league.
Given the constantly rising popularity of pets, one would assume that landlords would be more welcoming to pet-owning tenants. Sadly, this is not the case as most property owners have a no-pet clause in the lease agreements.
Many people are allergic to certain animals and neighboring tenants might be disturbed. Pets also cause property damage. Perhaps out of the fear of other not-so-pet-loving tenants moving out of the building, landlords opt to not allow pets at all, not realizing that they are closing the doors to a huge chunk of potential renters. Approximately 3/4th of millennials nowadays are proud owners of either a cat or a dog. Canada’s biggest cities are home to many international and local students who are also pet owners. A survey reported that 83% of pet owners faced difficulty in finding a pet-friendly apartment, 56% reported having not been able to secure accommodation due to a no-pets policy, and 21% reported, with a heavy heart, having to give up their pet in order to secure a rental apartment. Therefore, it is quite clear that this policy of pet prohibition adopted by many property owners acts against them rather than in their favor.
Looking at the legal side of things, most places in Canada have laws in favor of landlords putting a no-pet clause in the lease agreements. However, there are a select few places, such as Ontario, where the law pet-friendly and landlords are not legally allowed to prohibit tenants from owning pets except in certain cases (such as the pet causing an allergic reaction in other tenants).
Allowing tenants who own pets can be a source of extra revenue for property owners as there are three types of fees associated with pets in rental housings.
1. Pet Rent
This involves pet-owning tenants paying a monthly rent for their pet. This rent is non-refundable and taken additional to their monthly apartment rent. It is usually between $10 and $50.
2. Pet Deposit
Unlike the pet rent, the pet deposit is a one-time payment. It is refundable at the end of the lease term, provided certain conditions are met such as no property having been damaged by the pet. The deposit is a few hundred dollars and might vary according to which pet the tenant owns and how man.
3. Pet Fee
The pet fee shares similarities with both the pet deposit and pet rent. Akin to the deposit, it is a one-time payment but like the pet rent, it is non-refundable. It may be taken in addition to the pet deposit. In some provinces, it is illegal to charge pet fees.
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