Why do apartment dwellers have to pay additional rent for indoor pets?

I’m not a pet owner (any longer), but every apartment building and complex I know of that allows pets charges additional rent per pet. I well understand an additional deposit to cover possible additional wear and tearnt, but what’s the reasoning behind additional rent? My neighbor pays an additional $60 a month for her two indoor cats. That’s $7200 a year. They don’t use gym equipment or get their own parking spaces. Heck, kids cause a lot of wear and tear, yet no landlord I know of charges an additional monthly rent for kids.

$720 a year.

Because one person thought it would be a good idea, and others decided that sounded good too. Eventually, it becomes the norm, and there is little drawback to asking for it, and financial loss if you don’t.

In other words, there is no good reasoning as opposed to a deposit. It’s just a relatively recent phenomenon for saturated markets.

Because they can.

In some locations it can be genuinely difficult to even find an apartment that allows pets. So you have a lot of desperate people looking for a place they can live with their pets. They are willing to pay money for the privilege of doing so and some landlords are happy to take their money.

But there are also ongoing expenses: Landlords have to clean up the hallways and grounds after people who don’t clean up after their pets or do a poor job of doing so. Animals can damage property in the common areas and nobody is going to admit it was their pet that did it, let alone offer to pay for it. They have to do with complaints of noise and barking at night. They may face liability if a pet gets loose on the grounds and injures someone.

And security deposits may not always completely cover damage (and tenants-rights laws may limit the amount of the deposit). Even if you sue and win a judgment (which is expensive and time-consuming), good luck actually collecting the from a broke tenant.

Deposits don’t cover normal wear and tear. They cover things outside of that. If the only damage you’ve caused the home is “normal wear and tear” you will get your deposit back. Pets cause more wear and tear than people. In order for the landlord to account for this, they charge extra.

This may vary depending on your local regulations, but when we last rented an apartment we got our daughter’s therapist to sign a form stating that our cats are her “companion animals.” Which is bullshit, of course, they are our pets. We flat out told the therapist that we were doing this to get out of paying pet rent, and he gladly signed it. IIRC, the apartment complex couldn’t even charge us an extra deposit once we presented them with that form.

Because pets generally cause much more damage to an apt that people alone.

So you scammed the landlord? Not cool.

That would violate federal law (the Fair Housing Act). And it’s illegal because landlords were doing it.

There are websites that would beg to differ. Pets have at least can’t reach the ceiling.

:smack: Doh! Thanks for catching the error.

I’ve never heard of such a thing hereabouts.

Not sure it would fly here either, I’m gonna guess it’s not allowed or someone would be doing it already!

I never heard of anyone doing it here, but many, [most?] landlords won’t accept pets at all. Many beaches ban dogs in the holiday season and most public parks insist that they are at least kept on a lead.

I’d argue children under 5 cause more.

Spoken like someone who’s never seen a projectile-drooling St. Bernard.

Just a nitpick, and I know we’re supposed to avoid nitpicking now, but this might be important … YOU are not entitled to know what the therapist thinks of your daughter … the treatment is strictly between her and her therapist … you may think the therapist signed the form just so you could rent that place, but the therapist is not allowed to correct you if you’re wrong …

Far far more likely the therapist though the cats would be good for your daughter’s treatment … because:

The therapist ain’t going to risk losing their license writing prescriptions willy-nilly …


The additional charges for pets is to cover the additional damage done to the units. plus margins … most human tenants don’t use the door frame as a scratching post, or have fleas, or shed hair … it all adds up … most landlords won’t rent to people with pets, so few units are available perspective tenants have no choice but to pay the additional rent or get rid of their animal … not just landlords, but really any business will jump on every opportunity to increase profits … pet-owners are a “captive customer” [ka’ching] …

I charged $5 per cat (unlimited amount) and $10 per dog (maximum 2) … others consistent with these added rents, snakes $5, pigs $10, small birds free large ones $5 … I didn’t rent to the fella with 14 poisonous reptiles, but that would have been at least a million a month …

Abusing the “companion animal” rules was quite rare in my experience … folks who had the paperwork were, in fact, mentally ill and the animal was an important component of their treatment … this is by the measure of how well the animal was cared for and how little pet damage was left behind for me to deal with … I wasn’t allowed to charge extra, but then I didn’t need to for these companion animals … so the system works …

Besides, humans are the filthiest … BY FAR … downright vile at times … half the units I walked into after a tenancy I could tell I was the last person who cleaned it … the damage and mess left behind by pets was trivial in comparison … humans calling animals dirty is a total hypocrisy …

When I was a landlord, I said, “no pets” after some bad experiences. This didn’t keep every prospective renter from saying, “puleeeeze,” and I usually relented. But a $100 deposit never covered the damage from their pets, so a monthly charge would have been a good idea.

One tenant even kept an iguana in the bathtub. Different strokes, etc., but sheesh…

Just possibly this information was supplied by the daughter.

How much meth do they do?

Let’s focus on one item: carpets. Even the best trained pet will occasionally have some sort of accident on the carpet - barf if nothing worse. Older pets can become incontinent near the end. As a homeowner who has always had pets I know that there were several carpets I had to replace earlier than I would have had to do sans pets. Collecting a bit of extra rent to account for the accelerated replacement schedule is reasonable.