Should You Allow Pets in Your Rental Properties?
These days, more tenants own pets than those who do not. According to the ASPCA, 79% of US households own pets. By not allowing pets in your rental property dramatically reduces your pool of renters. Property owners have had good reasons for not allowing pets.
Pets can cause major damage.
Pets can leave lasting scars on your property. Dogs chew up the carpet, window sills and scratch up doors. Cats mark their territory, and scratching doors and walls. This behavior causes many landlords to avoid pets in rental property. However, property damage is not the only issues when it comes to avoiding pets. Often owners are away for long periods of time. This can lead to anxious pets and nuisance barking. Nuisance barking can bother other tenants. This can cause them to move due to the constant noise. Other tenants could call in noise complaints to the police which can result in home visits.
There are safety risks in allowing pets. Most animals are nice to their owners but they are still animals. Pets can react to unwanted company. If a stranger comes to the home during the day when an owner is not present, they may be aggressive. Not all pets are aggressive when home alone or when a stranger comes to the house. Yet, repairmen make it a point to ask if there is a dog loose on the premises. You’ll have to crate it up or lock it in a bedroom while they visit.
Often tenants forget to clean up after their pet. Not cleaning up the yard can ruin the grass, cause the yard to smell, and destroy any curb appeal you have at your property.
As a property owner, you have insurance on your property. Insurance companies have strict policies toward dog breeds they consider dangerous. This information is due to claims submitted to the company. You’ll need to avoid allowing these pet breeds if you want to keep your insurance policy.
How do you make owning pets a positive experience for yourself and your tenants?
A separate pet agreement will keep both parties on the same page. The pet agreement should state all the rules you have regarding pets in your property. Explain the rules in detail and signed separately by the tenants. You’ll want to make it clear that violating the pet agreement could lead to an eviction.
Consider charging a pet deposit or a monthly pet fee added to your tenants monthly rental payment. The money can pay for damage caused by the pets during the lease period.
Almost all pet owners think of their pets as part of the family. Asking a tenant to part with a pet is like asking them to give away a child. You wouldn’t ask and they wouldn’t comply with your request. Allowing tenants to include pets as a part of their lives will make them happy. As a result, they may rent from you for longer periods of time.
As a landlord you can do what you want with your rental properties. All parties need to agree to the same rules. If you want to allow pets great, if not…great. However, take a good look at the rental pool and consider all possibilities. Renting to tenants with pets can bring in extra rent and result in happier tenants.
If you looking for help managing tenants with pets, call 920-968-0626 Day Property Management or fill out our contact form today to discuss how we can help you.