Don’t Underestimate Power of Pets
Pets are having more of an influence in home buying and selling as well as renovation, a new study by the National Association of REALTORS® shows. Eighty-one percent of Americans say that animal-related considerations play a role when deciding on their next living situation, according to the 2017 Animal House: Remodeling Impact report.
“In 2016, 61 percent of U.S. households either have a pet or plan to get one in the future, so it is important to understand the unique needs and wants of animal owners when it comes to homeownership ” says NAR President William E. Brown. “REALTORS® understand that when someone buys a home, they are buying it with the needs of their whole family in mind; ask pet owners, and they will enthusiastically agree that their animals are part of their family.”
Indeed, a whopping 99 percent of pet owners say they consider the animal part of the family. Eighty-nine percent of respondents say they would not give up their animal because of housing restrictions or limitations. Home owners are willing to move for their pets too. Twelve percent of pet owners have moved to accommodate their animal; 19 percent would consider moving to accommodate their animal in the future.
Pets could cost you real estate deals. REALTORS® surveyed say that about one-third of their pet-owning clients often or very often will refuse to make an offer on a home because it is not a good match for their pet. Sixty-one percent of buyers, REALTORS® say, find it difficult or very difficult to locate a rental property or a homeowners association that accommodates pets.
Animals are having a say when it comes to the selling of a home too. Sixty-seven percent of REALTORS® say animals have a moderate to major effect on selling a home. About two-thirds of REALTORS® say that they advise pet-owning sellers to always replace things in the home damaged by an animal, have the home professionally cleaned to remove any animal scents, and to take animals out of the home during a showing or open house.
Pets are serving as guides to renovations too. Fifty-two percent of respondents say they had completed a home renovation project specifically to accommodate their pet. Twenty-three percent of those remodelers had built a fence around their yard; 12 percent added a dog door; and 10 percent installed laminate flooring.
Realizing the growing importance of pets in real estate matters, more real estate professionals are marketing themselves as pet friendly. Eighty percent of REALTORS® surveyed by NAR say they consider themselves animal lovers. Twelve percent of the REALTORS® say they volunteer for an organization that helps animals, and 21 percent plan to do so in the future.