Pets Are a Top Priority in Home-Buying Decisions, Surveys Say - Trending Vibe Trending Vibe

Pets Are a Top Priority in Home-Buying Decisions, Surveys Say

Just how important are pets becoming in our lives? New surveys find that for many people their dogs are now the most important priority when they decide where to live.

They show, too, that many people will move if they find their home no longer is suitable for their pets.

Location, views, and proximity to stores are all items that apparently take second place. Rental costs are less important. Even dishwashers take a second place to pets in crowded New York City.

Being close to veterinary clinics, parks, and groomers are significant factors. They indicate that the property is in a pet-friendly community.

Not only that. It also is important that their dogs have pet friends nearby.

Policies such as restrictions on the size of dogs and deposits for pets are top considerations when pet owners are looking for a new apartment in which to live, according to a survey conducted by Cortland, an apartment developing and managing company.

Ahead of Partners

Even many people, particularly those aged under 26, would place the needs of their pets ahead of the needs of their partners and their children—or future children—if they were buying a home, according to a survey by The Harris Poll for real-estate company Zillow.

They also say it is more important to have a pet-friendly home than a kid-friendly home.

Rather a Pet Than a Child

Young adults might be delaying having children, but they are not putting off being pet parents, says Amanda Pendleton, Zillow’s home trends expert.

A recent study found that most Gen Z adults (under age 26) would rather have a pet than have a child, she says, adding that as the younger generation grow into their years of home buying their pets will have a stronger influence on their decisions to move, perhaps even more than their significant others will have.

More people became pet owners during the pandemic. Recent surveys show that almost three-quarters of home buyers have at least one pet in their home. That figure is a strong increase over the six in 10 who were pet owners before COVID-19 hit.

Apartment Renters

Here is a look at some of the findings in the Cortland survey, which looked at dog owners who rent apartments:

• Eight in every 10 apartment renters aged under 26 and from 41 to 56 who own at least one dog say that owning a dog affects the decisions they reach on housing; more than half say it “definitely” does do so.

• Two-thirds in that age group said they would consider moving to another apartment if they could tell that their dog was unhappy in the apartment in which they were living.

• Nine out of 10 agreed that owning a pet increased their quality of living.

• Eight out of 10 would consider moving if the housing in which they lived was not dog friendly.

The Cortland survey also showed that seven in every 10 respondents say they are more likely to conduct business with a company that supports dog charities and pet causes than one that does not do so.

Home Buyers

The Zillow survey found that when buying a house:

• More people aged 18-26 would regard a fenced backyard to be essential if they were buying a home. They place that requirement above a kids playroom or double basins in the primary bathroom.

House listings that include a fenced backyard sell almost three days more quickly than similar homes. They sell even faster than listings that mention a playroom.

• Almost a quarter of pet owners under 26 would want to move house if their homes were no longer working for their pets. In contrast, only one in 10 would want to move if their home was no longer working for their partner.

• More than one in eight pet owners among all Americans living with a significant other or spouse would prefer to share their primary bedroom with their pet rather than with their partner.

Other findings were that pet owners are more likely to purchase bigger homes with more bedrooms. Those buyers who have pets also are more likely to consider private outdoor space very important.

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