How Much Do Pets Matter When Buying a Home?

Looking for the ideal home? There are numerous factors to consider, like whether it’s located in a good neighborhood, has an easy commute to work and if the price fits within your budget.

Perhaps the most important consideration for many people, though, is whether or not it has everything that their pets need to live long, happy lives there.

According to a recent survey, almost 95 percent of pet owners said they considered the needs of their furry friends to be important when selecting the right home to buy.

More than 2,000 buyers participated in the survey conducted in March in which about 82 percent of respondents were pet owners. Some 61 percent of participants were dog owners, 45 percent cat owners, 12 percent fish owners and 9 percent had birds. Some folks had multiple pets.

Here are some of the interesting results of the survey, which reinforces that pets are family and an important part of what makes a house a home:

• The top home features for pet parents were big yards (at 38 percent) and outdoor spaces (29 percent). After all, those four-legged companions need ample space to run around and sun themselves so they don’t wreck the house. 

• Pet owners also prioritized garages (at 24 percent), dog runs (22 percent) and lots of indoor square footage (20 percent)—which could help explain why 68 percent of pet owners would pass on their dream house if it didn’t accommodate the needs of their animals. Evidently, it wasn’t perfect if it there were too many stairs or it was a little too close to the highway.

• Among the survey respondents, 87percent of dog and cat owners rated their pets’ needs as extremely or very important when selecting a home. But 89 percent of bird owners, 85 percent of fish owners, 79 percent of rodent owners and 74 percent of horse owners also said they would also consider their animals before purchasing a property.