Pet friendly rental homes account for only 5% of the market in Valencia. And this figure is still higher than the national average.
According to data from the Affinity Foundation and the Fotocasa real estate portal, only 5% of market offer in the Valencian Community are a pet friendly rental homes.
As a result, both organisations have decided to work together to achieve a common goal: to demonstrate the difficulties that families with dogs and cats face when looking for pet friendly rental homes in Valencia, as well as some of the remaining barriers to companion animals being fully accepted in our society.
Renting a home with a dog or cat is difficult in the Valencian Community, with Castellón leading the trend, because only 5% of the flats for rent are pet friendly rental homes, whose owners expressly allow access to families with animals. The owners in Valencia and Alicante Provinces are a bit more forgiving, as both provinces have 6% acceptance rates. If you thought this was a bad news – think again. The Valencian Community outperforms the Spanish average in terms of availability of pet friendly rental homes.
Rentals account for 23% of the Spanish real estate market, according to Fotocasa data, and the number of homes available for rent has not stopped growing since the 2008 economic crisis. For a variety of reasons, including economic, labour, and flexibility, rent is becoming increasingly popular among Spaniards.
However, in Spain, only 4% of rental apartments explicitly allow access to families with animals, down from 5% in 2021. The Ley de Arrendamientos Urbanos (LAU), which governs the Spanish rental market, empowers landlords to accept or reject animals on their property.
“We want to bring to light the problems that people who live with a pet have when renting a home where all family members, including dogs and cats, are welcome. We want to be a voice for this issue that affects so many people every year, encouraging them to express themselves and demand a shift in society’s attitude.
Many contracts include the default clause ‘animals are not accepted,’ and we want to encourage people to consider it. We believe that we now have sufficient information and responsibility to ensure peaceful coexistence,” says Isabel Buil, director of the Affinity Foundation.
It should be noted that living with a pet is quite common in Spain. Animals are present in nearly half of all homes in Spain, or approximately 44% of housing units, according to the Affinity Foundation. Despite this, the existing barriers to rental housing for these families, as well as the lack of pet friendly rental homes, jeopardise a basic need.
“It is not a novelty that we have more and more dogs and cats, therefore, the acceptance of animals in rental housing is becoming more and more necessary. This admission would help to balance the rental market, where many tenant families are denied housing because they have pets. In this sense, instruments such as insurance and contract clauses provide owners with security and guarantees in the event of damage.
In short, it is everyone’s responsibility to build a more respectful society for animals and their families,” says Mara Matos, Director of Studies and Fotocasa spokesperson.
Why are owners still hesitant to rent when renting is becoming a more popular option among the general public? The widespread belief that pets are an extra expense for landlords because of the damage they can cause in the home persists. Those who want to rent out their properties, on the other hand, appear to be more concerned about inconveniences such as potential noise or odours.
These assumptions are frequently used to deny families with dogs and cats access to housing, and limit the number of pet friendly rental homes on the market
“We believe that this refusal on the part of homeowners responds more to the prejudices that we drag as a society than not to reality. People, as is natural, do not want problems and will go to great lengths to avoid them. The most important thing for a homeowner is to find the best family to live in his or her home, and many times, they will have a dog or a cat with whom they live in complete harmony, order, and cleanliness.
You are excluding a large number of potential tenants who would be ideal for the property if you exclude families with pets. We must reject the notion that animals are synonymous with noise and dirt because it is unfounded, and it is a belief that undermines many families’ equal opportunities to obtain the housing”, assures Isabel Buil.
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