Our pets are our wonderful friends that give us much love and companionship. For many of us older folks our pets have taken the place of our children who have married and left home. More than half of the foreigners that come to Ecuador bring their beloved pets with them.
We have encountered a few foreigners who are looking for a rental that have both dogs and cats with them. One expat couple we know brought three cats and a dog to Cuenca from the states. Another couple brought a huge dog with them. All three families with pets have something in common—they are looking for a furnished or semi-furnished rental.
Most apartments and condos do not allow pets, even when the place is without furniture. Although, there are exceptions but you will pay for it. Your best bet for housing when you have pets is a house with a yard rather than an apartment or condo because sometimes they will have a small green area, and or, a terrazzo for your pet, and of course because of this the landlord is more catering to those expats with pets.
Don’t you think it is only fair to your pet to have a yard, even if it is small? No dog likes to be cooped up without a yard to roam around in. Cats are different however, they are completely happy being cooped up in an apartment.
Pets and Furniture
We know that your pet would not scratch the furniture wood, or pee in the same corner on the hardwood floor, or get fur all over the furniture, but try and tell the landlord that. Most landlords do not allow pets in their furnished rentals and if they do, you will pay up to four times more.
Finding a two or three bedroom furnished at the local rental price rarely come up and the landlord will most-likely not allow pets…of course you can always ask, but you won’t pay local rent. We know this because we personally have asked about pets in many of the furnished rentals.
We’re not saying don’t bring your pets, but we are saying that it might be a lot more difficult to find a furnished rental that will take indoor pets. It certainly is not impossible, but just more difficult. But money always talks, it’s up to you if you want to over-spend on a furnished rental.
Here are a couple of things to consider if you are coming to Cuenca with your pet(s).
1) Don’t have an expectation of furnished at the local rental rates. Expect to pay $200 to $400 more for furnished. If you have pets expect to pay a hefty deposit to the landlord, just in case something gets ruined. You know your pet is clean and not destructive, but try and tell the landlord that after she just spent $1,800 on a new living room set.
2) Trying to find a furnished rental that will actually take your pet(s) will usually take some time; it could take days, or weeks until you find a furnished house or apartment that will accept pets. So, you can’t be in a hurry.
3) If you have pets, we recommend getting an unfurnished at the local rental rate and buy your own furniture. We recommend this for longer term stays just because in the long run it is much cheaper and there are more of the unfurnished rentals to go around and you will find a rental home much quicker and at a much nicer rental price!
4) So if you know ahead of time that you will be bringing your pet(s) we suggest you make room in your budget for buying your own furniture ($5k to 7K) for when you get here.
And here’s another thing to think about with furnished rentals. Many of the furnished rentals may have furniture that is not your style and you will end up not enjoying your new rental. We know personally that many of the homes and apartments that are furnished in the local price range have the bare minimum of furniture and it is 70’s and 80’s style furniture.
There is a lot of demand for even vacant houses with yards, and the local market is responding by raising rental rates. Our recommendation is: don't put yourself under time pressure to have to sign on any rental. This way, you can take your time and negotiate a more appropriate local rental rate rather than a foreigner rate.
The worst offender in that regard, as you might well have already guessed is: tah dah, craigslist. But if you're a reader of our DIY Cuenca Landing Guide, you already knew this.
For more, practical, how to, money and time saving advice and an inside look on how to live well on a budget in Ecuador see the DIY Cuenca Landing Guide today and if you want some assistance with finding a locally priced vacant long term rental see http://300dollarcuencarentals.blogspot.com/