7 best houseplants

What are the best houseplants for your apartment?

Having some plants in your apartment comes with a multitude of benefits. It is known to reduce airborne toxins, increase productivity and lower stress-levels. However when considering taking a plant roommate it’s best to choose a low maintenance and hard to kill green companion.

1. Cactus

best houseplants

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No surprise here. For a Cactus to survive it only needs some light, warmth and a bit of water (once a month). They come into many shapes and sizes so it should not be too difficult to find a cactus you like!

2. Orchid

best houseplants

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The Orchid is one of the most beautiful flowering indoor plant; blooms pop up a couple times a year. However, it needs a lot of light, water and attention.

3. Snake Plant

best housplants

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The Snake plan is without a doubt the most tolerant houseplant. These plants can be neglected for weeks at a time yet they still look fresh. To take care of them put them in indirect sunlight and don’t water them too much.

4. Pepperomia

best houseplants

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Place this plant in bright filtered light. Only water when the surface of the soil is dry to the touch. Feed monthly with a balanced liquid fertiliser. This plant is great for pet-owners as most varieties are non-toxic to pets.

5. Aloe

best houseplants

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The Aloe vera plant is known for being used in a lot of remedies and healthy recipes. Like the cactus, Aloe vera houseplants need very little water. Aloe vera plants need bright light, so they do best in south- or west-facing windows.

6. Jade

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Jade plant care is easy and simple. Many people enjoy growing jade plants in their homes and offices, and they are often considered to be symbols of good luck. They only need light, a little a amount of fertiliser and water! Be careful to never let it dry out completely.

7. Bromeliad

best houseplants

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This tropical looking plant is really popular. It is one of the rare houseplants that flowers. Only need some light and water when you notice its soil is dry.


Top 10 Places to Bike in Boston

What are the Top 10 Places to Bike in Boston?

Minutemen Bike Path

Top 10 Places to Bike in Boston

This 11-mile historical path runs through Cambridge, Bedford, Lexington and Arlington. The path can be access in Cambridge at the Alewife station with several seasonal refreshment areas along the way. One of the best places to bike in Boston!

Paul Dudley Bike Path

Top 10 Places to Bike in Boston

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The Dr. Paul Dudley Bike Path consists of 18 miles beautiful winding road, starting at the Esplanade loops, cutting through Science Park, and ending in Watertown Center. This wonderful path provides great access to the Hatch Shell during the summer months.

Riverbend Park Bike Path

Top 10 Places to Bike in Boston

George Rizer for the Boston Globe

The Riverbend Park Bike Path covers Memorial Drive from Eliot Drive to Western Ave, making it a great place for bikers, joggers, and rollerblades to enjoy some of Boston’s finest green space.

Arnold Arboretum

Top 10 Places to Bike in Boston

Arnold Arboretum Archives

This 125-year old Boston city park offers 265 acres of beautiful landscape and bike paths. Once closed to bikers, it now offers a variety of scheduled events that can be found on its online calendar. One of the oldest best places to bike in Boston!

Stony Brook Reservation

Top 10 Places to Bike in Boston

Globe Photo

With 12 miles of biking and hiking trails located adjacent to Turtle Pond, the Stony Brook Reservation is most definitely one of West Roxbury’s hidden treasures.

Jamaicaway Bike Path

Top 10 Places to Bike in Boston

David L. Ryan/ Globe Staff

Running from northwest side of Leverett Pond on route 9, to the Southwest bank of Jamaica Pond. It also connects to Olmstead Park making this a great place for a family picnic.

Pierre Lallement Southwest Corridor Bike Path

Top 10 Places to Bike in Boston

John Blanding/ Globe Staff

Named after the inventor of the pedal bicycle, this is a must for bike lovers. This trail is constantly named one of the best in Massachusetts, and it is only open to cyclists and pedestrians.

Millennium Park

Top 10 Places to Bike in Boston

Chitose Suzuki/ Globe Staff

Once an unsightly landfill, this 350-acre park on Boston’s South end serves up several miles of paved bike and pedestrian trails, with great views of the Charles River. The bridge over Sawmill Brook connects the park’s paved paths to Brook Farm Reservation’s unpaved ones. If you are looking for a place to bike in Boston, we highly recommend it!

Muddy River Bike Path

Top 10 Places to Bike in Boston

David Kamerman/ Globe Staff

This path runs along the north bank of the Muddy River from Park Drive in Boston almost to Brookline Avenue in Brookline. This path gives bicyclists a beautiful alternative to crowded streets.

Neponset River Greenway

Top 10 Places to Bike in Boston

Patrick Rosso for Boston.com

Another hidden gem, this Dorchester trail extends through Milton and Mattapan and offers a perfect way to spend an afternoon with bike riders of all ability levels. The Department of Conservation is working to expand and improve this path, especially the missing sections near Morrissey Boulevard in Dorchester.


5 Picnic Spots around Boston

The weather is getting nicer everyday. It gives us a perfect excuse to share our 5 favorite picnic spots around Boston!

Clement G Morgan Park

Picnic Spots around Boston

This newly refurbished this park has everything:  basketball courts, a playground, picnic tables and an excellent brand new lawn. Even if it’s quite small,  this nice picnic spot is one of the few options t in Cambridge’s mostly lawn-less Central Square neighborhood. One of the best picnic spots around Boston.

Boston Public Garden and Boston Common

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Share a snack on a park bench in the Garden, or soak up the sun on the grassy historic Common. Enjoy this true oasis in the middle of the city. You can spread out under a willow tree or get your lounge on in the grass and picnic!

Puopola Park and Langone Park

Picnic Spots around Boston

It’s well known North End is some of the best place to buy some Italian food. So grab some bread, cheese, and meats from one of the neighborhood shops and bring them to one of these two adjacent parks. There are plenty of activities here for kids and a variety of sports fields. Take a seat and enjoy the view. Definitely one of the best picnic spots around Boston!

Spectacle Island

Picnic Spots around Boston

For this one you’ll need to take a ferry to get there but don’t worry it’s worth the short trip .Long sandy beaches with supervised swimming (if you feel like swimming in the harbor), and nice green summits to picnic and enjoy the view. Ferries leave from Long Wharf in Boston. More information here.

Lewis Wharf

Picnic Spots around Boston

Lewis Wharf It  a good place to watch the boats coming and going. Even better is the secret tucked-away herb garden. You’ll have to go looking for the gravel path that leads here, as its almost completely enclosed by greenery. One of the most intimate picnics spots in Boston.


Top 5 Children’s Books about Boston

What are the Top 5 Children’s Books about Boston?

Hello Boston!

By: Martha Day Zschock
Children’s Books about Boston

Hello Boston! Is a great way to teach your child about our wonderful city. The book takes the reader on a tour of the city’s major landmarks while sharing some of Boston’s history.

Larry Gets Lost in Boston

By: Michael Mullin

Children’s Books about Boston

Join Larry the pup and his owner Pete as they explore Boston, MA. From Fenway Park’s Green Monster to the swan boats in Boston Public Garden, your child will learn about Boston’s history and cultural landmarks

The Home Team: Boston Bruins

By: Holly Preston

Children’s Books about Boston

The Home Team: The Boston Bruins is a story about several neighborhood friends who make their dreams of eventually playing for the Boston Bruins, come true. This book is a perfect way to show your sports passion to your child in a fun and relaxing way.

Goodnight Boston

By: Adam Gamble

Children’s Books about Boston

Many of Boston’s most beloved landmarks are artfully celebrated in these books designed to soothe children before bedtime while instilling an early appreciation for Boston’s natural and cultural wonders. 

Make Way For Ducklings

By: Robert McCloskey

Children’s Books about Boston

Make Way for Ducklings has been described as “one of the merriest picture books ever” (The New York Times). Ideal for reading aloud, this book deserves a place of honor on every child’s bookshelf.


Best Children’s Bookstores in Boston

With today being International Children’s Book Day, Cambridge Realty Group presents you with the best children’s bookstores in Boston:

Henry Bear’s Park

19 Harvard St.
Brookline, MA 02445
(617) 264-2422

Best Children’s Bookstores in Boston

Although Henry Bear’s Park is primarily a toy store, they have an extensive selection of children’s books and novels, perfect for all ages.

Porter Square Books

25 White St.
Cambridge, MA 02140
(617) 491-2220

Best Children’s Bookstores in Boston

Porter Square books not only has a great inventory of books and stuffed animals, they also offer story hour every Wednesday at 11am. This provides children the chance to interact with each other and allows you an hour of relaxation. One of the best children’s bookstores in Boston!

Eureka! Puzzles

1349 Beacon St.
Brookline, MA 02446
(617) 738-7352

Best Children’s Bookstores in Boston

Besides offering a variety of children’s books, Eureka Puzzles is a great place to have your child engage their mind and challenge their creativity with an assortment of puzzles.

The Curious George Store

1 JFK St
Cambridge, MA 02138
(617) 547-4500

Best Children’s Bookstores in Boston

Do not let the size of this store scare you away! The Curious George Store is perfect for you and your child, as it is home to many children and adult books. It is the perfect place to get some reading done regardless of your age.

New England Comics

316 Harvard St.
Brookline, MA 02446
(617) 566-0115

Best Children’s Bookstores in Boston

New England Comics has an endless selection of comics and books for adults, but is also a great place to pick up children’s comics, books, or even better, a new toy!


The 8 best coffee shops in Boston

According to a new study, Bostonian love their coffee shops. What are the best coffee shops in Boston?

Bostonians start drinking coffee really young: 15 percent of 2-year-olds have as much as 4 ounces each day! Although it might not be very healthy, it gives us an excuse to share our list of the best coffee shops in Boston!

Dwelltime

Dwelltime is a coffee bar & bake shop located in Cambridge. While Dwelltime is mainly an island-style coffee shop, they also serve sandwiches and salads. They also have a large brunch menu on the week-ends. Caution: Dwelltime does not permit the use of laptops at the tables during the weekends.

The Thinking Cup

Thinking Cup opened its doors in December 2010 and  is ideally located just steps from the Boston Common. It prides itself on serving exclusively “Stumptown Coffee”, known for being one of the world’s finest coffee beans. If you are not in the mood for coffee you will also find a rich variety of teas and pastries. Without a doubt The Thinking cup is one of the best coffee shops in Boston.

. best coffee shops in Boston the thinking cup

1369 Coffee House

best coffee shops in Boston 1369 coffee house

1369 Coffee House is one of the most renowned and award winning coffee shop in the Boston area. With two locations in Inman and Central Square, the 1369 Coffee House prides itself on its comfortable and inviting atmosphere. Tea-drinkers are also welcome here as this coffee shop sells more than 25 exotic loose leaf teas and a house-made chai (black tea, spices, and honey).

Wired Puppy

This European-style espresso café carries only organic, direct trade specialty coffees and teas, all very certified and all very kosher. The top-dog-fan-favorite is the Sweet Puppy Love blend, a slightly smoky medium/dark combo of Vienna, Italian, and French roasts. They also offer free WiFi and computer use, which is perfect for the students who don’t feel like carrying their laptops around Boston.

best coffee shops in Boston wired puppy

Diesel Café

best coffee shops in Boston diesel café

Started by two buddies (Tucker and Jennifer) in May of 1999 and located in Davis Square, Diesel Café was granted the 2011 Green Business of the Year Award by the Somerville Chamber of Commerce. Diesel café’s atmosphere is always hip and inviting as it is a gathering spot for many students.

Flour Bakery + Cafe

best coffee shops in Boston flour bakery

With two locations in Boston and one in Cambridge, Flour is the perfect destination for college students with a sweet tooth. Everything at Flour is homemade and delicious.

Render Coffee

Render Coffee is a cozy daytime gathering spot where artisanal coffee shares the menu with quiche, bagels & sandwiches.The place is known for having many amazing international grinds such as Baroida (Papua New Guinea), El Gavilán (Ecuador), or La Golondrina (Colombia).

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This coffee place is committed to maintaining the art and craft of artisanal coffee prepa­ra­tion. Their latte is especially amazing.The ambiance is very relaxing and hip and the staff is always great.


Tips to Deal With Bad Neighbors

Here are the best ways to deal with bad neighbors while being a good one.

Most neighbor disputes end up in court because of poor communication.

1. Get to know each other

You don’t need to be best friends with your neighbors. However it is necessary that you communicate on a regular basis with them to develop a mutual trust and understanding. Saying hi or asking them how they are doing could even be enough as issues are more likely to escalate among strangers than even casual acquaintances.

Tips to Deal With Bad Neighbors

2. Communicate before problem arise.

Once again communication is key. Your discomfort might be obvious to you, but if you haven’t told them, chances are your “bad neighbors” don’t even know they’re being a bother. A non-aggressive direct and honest phone call or conversation is the best way to avoid any problems.

3. Document the problem and write and report

If a problem does come up, document it. Write down times, dates, take pictures… It will come in handy if you need to explain the situation to your bad neighbor or the authorities. It also shows that you are organised and you will surely be taken very seriously.

5. See if anyone else will side with you

If you have other neighbors you might want to check with them if they are also experiencing issues with your “bad neighbors”. If they are, they are very likely to help you.If you’re part of a condo or homeowner’s association, be sure to discuss the problem  with them and see if they can resolve it more easily than you can.

6. Look for advice  online

Sites like Neighbors From Hell have message boards full of common issues and good advice,where people discuss their problems with bad neighbors. It is free to view and is full of common issues and good advice, but registering will cost $50 if you want to ask about a unique problem. If you just want to vent about your bad neighbors, try  AnnoyingNeighbors.com.

Tips to Deal With Bad Neighbors

7. Talk to a lawyer.

Tips to Deal With Bad Neighbors

If you’ve tried everything, you can consult a lawyer to have them write a letter threatening legal action. But be careful! it usually cost a few hundred dollars, but it may also throw gas on the fire. Make it a last resort.

8. Call the cops.

If you’ve tried to communicate with no success, involving the police is unfortunately the next step.  Explain the situation honestly and don’t forget to show your notes, pictures and reports. However you need to realize that they probably can’t do much unless the law is being broken.

9. Take it to small claims court.

This is much cheaper than a bigger lawsuit  because you can represent yourself. But you must be prepared. You need to be able to lay out the problem and provide evidence.

To put in in a nutshell, dealing with a bad neighbor or being a good one is all about communication.


Best apartment dogs

Living in an apartment doesn’t mean you are not allowed to own a dog! Take a look at our list of the best apartment dogs:

10. English Bulldog

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English Bulldogs don’t like to move around much and most of them would rather sleep on the couch than go for a walk. Their medium size and their natural laziness make them one of the best apartment dogs!

9. Shih Tzu

best apartment dogs

Although Shih Tzus need a daily walk, they don’t mind living in an apartment. These dogs are fairly active indoors and will do okay without a yard.

8.Cavalier King Charles Spaniel

Very friendly, low maintenance and easy going the Cavalier is an ideal apartment dog. Because this breed is very calm and small it won’t take up much space.

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7. Great Dane

best apartment dogs

Yes. Despite their size,Great Danes can be great apartment dogs  as they are calm, friendly and quiet. They are not as high energy as other breeds, but despite their couch potato ways, daily exercise is important. 30 min of intense walk a day should be enough for this gentle giant.

6. Pugs

best apartment dogs

This breed has a lot going for it. It comes in a handy compact size (Pugs are 10 to 14 inches high and weigh 14 to 18 pounds) and it’s cool with just hanging out with you on couch. However Pugs need some daily exercise.

5. Chihuahua

If a breed can fit into your purse, it can fit into your apartment! Tipping the scales at 2 to 6 pounds, the Chihuahua won’t take up much room and is considered by many as one of the best apartment dogs. However be careful to train your Chihuahua as most of them bark a lot. They are intelligent and  fast learners so it shouldn’t be too problematic.

best apartment dogs

4.Pomeranian

Pomeranians are small enough to live in apartments or condos. However they are notoriously difficult to train and always full of energy! Even if they are good apartment dogs, they need their daily mind and body workout!

best apartment dogs

3.Chinese Crested

The Chinese Crested may not be the best looking dog but this little fella makes up for it by being a loving companion and a wonderful apartment-sized pup. Don’t want to do anything today? No problem! The Chinese Crested will lie in bed with you for hours.

best apartment dogs

2.Boston Terrier

This little gentleman makes any apartment or condo look good. But you’ll have to keep an eye out on him – sometimes, he can be too smart for his own good and that can lead to trouble. This breed tends to keep its barks to itself, so you won’t have to worry about neighbors complaining about the noise. And his energy level is pretty moderate, so a daily walk will suffice.

best apartment dogs

1. Yorkshire

best apartment dogs

Cute, cuddly and super compact  Yorkshire are  perfect apartment dogs. Really adaptable and friendly the Yorkie will be happy to curl up on your lap all day as long as it receives enough affection.

Finding an pet-friendly apartment is difficult but not impossible! Be sure to take a look at our tips to find pet-friendly apartments!


The Top 10 Ways to Spend St. Patrick’s Day in Boston

 Saint Patrick’s Day, March 17th, is an annually celebrated event that marks the death date of the patron saint of Ireland, St. Patrick. This holiday has been observed since the early seventeenth century and is certainly celebrated right here in Boston. Many Irish immigrated to the Eastern ports of America and Boston became home to a large Irish community. In Boston, St. Patrick’s Day brings out the Irish in all of us and the holiday is widely celebrated with lots of drinking, eating and partying!

We have compiled a list of the Top 10 Ways to Spend St. Patrick’s Day in Boston this year. Because the holiday falls on weekday, we will be celebrating throughout the weekend leading right up until the 17th!

 

1. SoutSt. Patrick's Dayh Boston parade

Did you know that South Boston St. Patrick’s Parade is the second largest parade in the country? Every year it is viewed by at least 600 000 persons and brings up to one million people to South Boston.

 

Even though this year the route will be shortened because of the snow, it is still Boston’s traditional and historical way of celebrating St. Patrick’s Day!

On March 15 at 1pm, the parade will start at Broadway Station on West Broadway. It will head down East Broadway and end at Farragut Road.

You can find some information about the parade on its official Website.

 

2. Eat in an Irish Restaurantirish

Feeling like eating some traditional Irish specialties like Corned beef and cabbage, shepherd’s pie or fish and chips? The Greater Boston Convention and Visitors Bureau has put together a listing of restaurants serving Irish specialties exclusively for the holiday!

You might want to make a reservation to avoid a long waiting time though…

 

3. Explore the Irish Cultural Centre

For four days ,March 13-15 and 17, the Irish Cultural Centre of New England will be having a St. Patrick’s Day Celebration featuring Irish music, dance and food.

Even though there is an admission fee it is definitely worth it and a great way to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day.

Find more information on their official Website.

 

harpe4. A little bit of Ireland

Celebrate St. Patrick’s Day with the Reagle Players as they present A Little Bit of Ireland , a heartfelt homage to Ireland on March 14-15 at the Reagle Music Theatre in Waltham. With a cast of more than 100 artists and a live orchestra, this production is one of the largest Irish shows in New England.

 

They also have group rates so go with a crowd!

 

Find more information and book your ticket on their official Website.

 

5 . Official St Patrick’s Day PubCrawl Boston

Everybody knows, that, St. Patrick’s day is the ideal holiday to go a bar to celebrate. Boston is home to countless amazing Irish bars serving traditional beers and food. But what if you didn’t have to pick one bar out of the amazing boston Pub scene? By participating to the world largest Pub Crawl you could benefit from many drink and food specials from some of Boston best pubs!

Over 10 venues are participating to this year’s PubCrawl, including Hard Rock Cafe, Clarke’s, Howl at the Moon, Mija Cantina, Wild Rover, The Vault, Sissy K’s, The Times Irish, Durgin Park, Koy, and more!

Find more information and buy your ticket on their official Website.

 

6. The Irish Heritage Trail

Every March the Boston Irish Tourism Association provides guided walks of the Irish Heritage Trail. Discover over 200 years of Irish history in Boston from Commodore John Barry to President John F. Kennedy. Make the most of St. Patrick’s Day and walk in the footsteps of the Irish-American artists and heroes of Boston from the 1700’s to today!

 

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 7. St. Patrick’s Day Celtic Sojourn

The popular holiday concert series returns for its 10th annual St. Patrick’s Day Celtic Sojourn. For the past nine years, A St. Patrick’s Day Celtic Sojourn concerts have introduced a wide range of new and familiar musicians like Brian O’Donovan, Mick McCauley or Keith Murphy to audiences eager to celebrate the holiday in true Irish style.

Find more information here.

 

boston celtics8. Cheer on the Boston Celtic’s!

 

Wear your green and show your support for Boston’s sport teams on Friday night, March 13, as the Boston Celtics take on the Orlando Magic at the TD Garden or on Monday, March 16, when Boston’s team plays the Philadelphia 76ers.

Find tickets here.

 

 

 

 

9. Visit the John F. Kennedy Library and Museum

John F. Kennedy, 35th president, may well be the most famous Irish American. This holiday may be the perfect time to visit the John F. Kennedy Library and Museum. . On Saturday, March 14, the JFK Library will host a performance by the Irish Balladeers celebrating traditional stories and dances with authentic Irish instruments!

This free performance is for families with children 5 and up and attendees must pre-register by completing this online form.

 

10. Rock and roll

The Massachusetts based Celtic-Punk punk group, the Dropkick Murphys, well known internationally and featured in Martin Scorsese’s “The Departed” will be in the House of Blues on Lansdowne Street in Boston for a series of shows on March 12, 13, 14 and 15.

Who said punk was dead?


Tips to find a pet friendly apartment 1

Do you want to find a pet friendly apartment ? It is difficult but not impossible!

Looking for an apartment is an exhausting task by itself. Add a pet to the mix and things get quickly even more complicated. Don’t worry and take a look at our tips to find a pet friendly apartment:

 

1-Plan ahead and allow extra time for your search

Before the start of your apartment search it is crucial that you prepare yourself. Finding a pet friendly rental is difficult but definitely not impossible. However you should be aware that it might take a considerable amount of time for you to find a pet friendly apartment. You should start looking at least six weeks before you plan to move.

We recommend that before applying to places you gather:

– your pet’s obedience training and vaccination records. Provide written proof that your pet is spayed or neutered and is, therefore, healthier, calmer, and less likely to be a nuisance.

– a reference for your pet from your previous landlord or veterinarian vouching for your pet’s good behaviour. According to KC Theisen, director of pet care issues at the Humane Society of the United States: “A reference from a previous landlord can be huge in changing the mind of the landlord,”

Tips to find a pet-friendly apartmentThen you should try to connect to some networks. Good examples are  the Humane Society of the United States website as well as your local shelter’s or veterinarian’s Facebook page and Website. Most of these places will have pet-friendly rental listings available or could give you some precious advices and answer your questions. You could also take a look at PeopleWithPets.com which specializes in helping you find a pet friendly apartment.

Also If you know any real estate agents, rental agents, or resident managers who share your love of animals, contact them and ask them for leads. Many of us at Cambridge Realty Group are pet owners ourselves and can help you and your loved pets find a pet friendly apartment.

 

2-Focus on single family rentals

Large apartment complex are more likely to have restrictive policy concerning pets. It might also be quite difficult -even impossible- to try to negotiate with them. Instead focus on individually-owned properties. They are more likely to be flexible and accept pets on a case-by-case basis.

When you find a pet friendly apartment that works for you and your pets, ACT QUICKLY before it is gone.

Tips to find a pet-friendly apartment

3- Sell yourself and your pet

Put yourself in the shoes of a landlord for a moment. They might have had bad experiences with pet owners in the past.

That’s why it is crucial that you sell yourself as a responsible pet owner who is committed to providing responsible pet care and being a responsible neighbour.

Let prospective landlords and managers know that you understand that living with a companion animal is a privilege, not a right. Make it clear that you intend to keep your pet under control at all time.

We also advice you set up a meeting between the land lord and your pet.Be sure your pet is freshly groomed and well-behaved. It could be great to invite the landlord to visit you and your pet in your current home or to provide pictures of you and your pet in your old property.

Tips to find a pet-friendly apartment

4- Negotiate

If the landlord is still hesitating, don’t hesitate to mention that  that you are willing to pay an extra security deposit to cover any damages your pet might do to the property.

If you have any concerns or questions contact us. We have helped a lot of pet owners find a pet friendly apartment in the past!