Forget about winning the approval of a co-op board or finding a roommate — many house hunters are more worried about finding a home that suits their pet, and would even pass on a perfect home to do so.
A recent survey from Realtor.com found that a whopping 75 percent of pet owners would pass on an otherwise perfect home if it didn't meet their pet's needs. Younger buyers were even more likely to say no to a home if it didn't meet the needs of their pet (79 percent between the ages of 18 and 34), as opposed to older buyers (77 percent of 35 to 54 year olds and 64 percent of buyers 55 and older).
Even low-maintenance pets like fish, birds and reptiles had a pretty big influence on the house-hunting process; according to the survey, 87 percent of fish owners, 98 percent of reptile owners and 92 percent of rodent owners said their pet's needs were important or very important during their home search. That's in comparison to 90 percent of dog owners and 87 percent of cat owners who say the same.
So what exactly are pet owners looking for when considering a new abode? Realtor.com asked home-buyers with pets to rank the three home features they thought were most important for their pets. Topping the list was a large yard (45 percent), followed by any outdoor space (36 percent), a garage (33 percent), large square footage (29 percent), a dog run (26 percent), sturdy flooring (26 percent) and close proximity to outdoor spaces (25 percent).
The survey included over 1,000 people who closed on a home in 2018, and was conducted in July by Harris Research. Of those surveyed, 80 percent reported owning pets, with younger buyers being more likely to be pet owners.
Realtor.com's findings correlate with other surveys that reveal millennial-age Americans tend to prioritize the needs of their furry friends when it comes to house-hunting, as opposed to other major factors like marriage and kids. The 2017 SunTrust Mortgage survey also found that 42 percent of millennials who had never bought a home said their dog or desire to have one would be a key factor in their decision to buy a home.
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