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Reader Question: How Easy is it to Rent Apartments / Houses With Pets?

Posted in: Ecuador Real Estate, Everything Expat, Living in Ecuador

apartments-with-petsA reader recently asked: We have 3 small dogs terriers and 2 cats. How easy is it to rent apartments and houses in Ecuador with pets?

Its a great question. When we bought our daughter her dog, we were a little concerned if the landlord would allow it in the apartment.

Well, he didn’t care. Neither did our second apartment landlord or our third house landlord. They loved to pet the dog – at least the second landlady – but they weren’t concerned in the least. In fact, we have friends who were renting an apartment, and their upstairs neighbors dogs were dropping bombs all over the common parking area – and the landlady didn’t even mind that. It got bad enough that they had to break the contract and move somewhere else.

So, it seems that, if anything, the landlords here in Cuenca border on being too lenient about pets – certainly not too strict. We have friends with pets who rent, and who’ve lived in a number of different homes and never had any trouble with the landlords.

In Canada, that’s a common landlord question: Any pets? But we’ve never been asked. The culture is much more laid back, much less up-tight than Canada.

Our experience has been with unfurnished homes. If I was renting a furnished place, I wouldn’t allow pets, but I don’t have experience here with furnished rentals. I’m sure that there are always exceptions, but if you have pets, you shouldn’t have any trouble finding a great place to live here in Cuenca.

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Meet the Author

Bryan Haines is co-editor of GringosAbroad - Ecuador's largest blog for expats and travelers. He is a travel blogger and content marketer. He is also co-founder of ClickLikeThis (GoPro tutorial blog) and Storyteller Media (content marketing for travel brands). Work with GringosAbroad.

16 comments… add one
  • Kelle Tanner Jun 21, 2013, 12:33 pm

    Hello I am a single woman 60ish making a decision of which country to retire in could someone tell me if Ecuador is a safe place for myself and li’l dog to move to I do understand that stuff happens everywhere and have to be careful, but some places can get scary,Maybe a single lady expat has some experience that they can share with me? Thanks, Kelle

  • Joanne Lewis May 25, 2012, 10:41 am

    Hi Bryan, we are a couple from Cape Breton, looking for a lead on moderately price hotel/hostel etc. that will except our dog and cat. We arrive Quito June 12 and arrive the week of the 18 in Cuenca. Having difficulty find a place that will except the pets till we arrange permanent rental. Any leads would be appreciated.
    PS love your blog, been following you approx 2 years, almost feel like friends (lopside).

  • laura Feb 13, 2012, 8:05 pm

    ok…so just to clarify, renting an unfurnished house is ok with pets, but furnished would be a problem?

    • Bryan Haines Feb 13, 2012, 9:47 pm

      Thats right – we haven’t heard of a landlord having a problem with pets in an unfurnished house. And only some apartments would prohibit it. I don’t have much experience with furnished places, but from what I understand, most don’t want them. And I can’t really blame them.

  • Len Langevin Oct 1, 2011, 9:13 am

    I’ve rented a couple of places in Ecuador – both furnished and unfurnished – and have never had a landlord have an issue with pets – in my case, two cats.

    When I rented in Manta, I went through a rental agent (didn’t speak Spanish at the time) and got a new furnished 2-bedroom, 2-bath 1200 sq. ft. apartment for $475 including electricity and water. This is pretty normal for Manta, with or without a rental agent.

    I now live in Baños where I have rented a building with a 3-bedroom apartment, an office, a second one-bedroom apartment and a commercial space for $500 a month. I dealt directly with the owner.

    In general, I have found the rents to be more expensive in Manta than other parts of Ecuador. Here in the busy tourist town of Baños, you can get a very nice 2-bedroom apartment for $250 (much less if you can live on Ecuadorian standards) or a large three-bedroom furnished home on half an acre for $550 a month.

    • Bryan Haines Oct 1, 2011, 10:03 am

      Thanks Len – good to know that we aren’t the only people renting with pets! 🙂 Some of the real estate agents try to promote some funny (untrue) ideas about rentals. This isn’t NYC or LA (fortunately) and the Ecuadorian people are not nearly as uptight as our neighbors up north. The general attitude about little details, like pets, is: No pasa nada, which means: Nothings going to happen. Of course this doesn’t mean that its acceptable for pets to damage things, but a properly trained cat/dog will hardly raise an eyebrow. Thanks for sharing some of the specifics of prices/apartments.

      • Len Langevin Oct 1, 2011, 12:38 pm

        Yup…I love the “no pasa nada” attitude. Ecuadorians just don’t seem to sweat the small stuff like we North Americans tend to do.

  • Benjamin Wheeler-Harsh Jul 8, 2011, 4:29 pm


    I’m surprised by the example you give of a tenants dog being allowed to crap all over the common areas of the building. This is not something that the average land lord would want. They might be timid enough or too polite to do anything about it but I’m sure that in most cases they would HATE it. It seems irresponsible to suggest that any person with a out of control animal will be able to easily find a quality rental property in Cuenca.

    By the way, I did get your message regarding one of my blog posts and I no problem discussing it with you further but I have not had time to post your comment along with an appropriate response. I stand behind all of my comment and I have specific examples often that confirm my statements. I know that there are many lovely Ecuadorians but when it comes to money and business, there is a very different side.

    I really enjoy most of the content on your page and it seems to be a great source of information for people. If you care to, I would be happy to continue with a discussion on any of these issues.

    Best Regards,


    • Bryan Haines Jul 8, 2011, 5:36 pm

      Hi Benjamin,

      The example I gave was an example. Nothing more. I wasn’t suggesting that expats should bring their unruly dogs, but highlighting the differences that I’ve seen compared to rentals in Canada. Maybe you could re-read the post to see the tone of what was written.

      Because our readers can’t read the comment you are referring to (as it has yet to post) I was commenting on a statement in a post you wrote in October 2010. The comment suggested that Ecuadorian people are dishonest thieves, and I took issue with that.

      I doubt that you can provide enough examples to convince anyone of the truthfulness of this blanket statement: (The little old Ecuadorian woman who you are sure is nice and trustworthy is just as likely to rip you off as any thief on the streets.) in the post you refer to, that I commented on back in October.

      It is comments like this that make Ecuadorians skeptical of and dislike foreigners – and foreigners skeptical of and dislike Ecuadorians. We have found that by treating people properly we have been treated exceptionally well. We have never used an agency (like Cuenca Condos) in signing leases and we haven’t had any problems.

      You are in such a great position to help expats see what amazing people Ecuadorians are.

      • Doug Jul 8, 2011, 7:28 pm


        I agree with your comment. We have rented 5 unfurnished houses since living in Ecuador and have never had any landlord ask us about pets. If you rent a furnished place that is a different matter. Most will not allow pets.
        We have a dog and cat and our landlords have never made an issue of it. Also, I have found the Ecuadorian landlords we have dealt with to be very honest and sincere people. Also we have saved money by renting directly from the owners. We have never paid over $280.00 for our houses. Try finding such deals on the “gringo expert” realty sites. Their prices are outrageous. I think that expats will do themselves a favor and when renting if they deal directly with the Ecuadorian landlords and avoid the realtors when possible.

  • SHEILA MCCAHEY Apr 30, 2011, 11:18 am

    If I rent an unfurnished apartment or house, how difficult is it to rent furniture? I want to come to Ecuador for 3 or 4 months. I will bring my 2 small dogs.

    • Bryan Haines May 1, 2011, 6:31 am

      Hi Sheila,

      I haven’t heard of renting furniture. Maybe it exists, but I don’t think so. You would be better to rent a furnished place.


  • terrydarc Feb 20, 2011, 3:25 pm

    How did you take the 1st step in finding a house/apartment. Newspaper ads, word of mouth, driving/wandering around, personal contacts, or what?

    • Bryan Haines Mar 16, 2011, 6:41 am

      Hi Terry, great question. We were in Cuenca two weeks, before we signed a rental contract. We wandered the streets of an area we liked and found a new building with a sign in the window.

      • terrydarc Mar 16, 2011, 12:55 pm

        Thanks, Bryan!I asked b/c we were there for a month in a semi-suitable place for a couple weeks b4 we wandered past a sign in a window on tour agency on Hermano Miguel. Seemed like we could have found a place in the papers with a bit of work but a local gringo connection would have been helpful. Great site, btw.-Terry—

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