04 Jun Pet Friendly Rental Property
Pet Friendly Rental Property
Deciding whether or not to make your investment property, a pet friendly rental property can be hard. On one hand, you know it will make your rental property more desirable. On the other hand, you know it can increase the wear and tear on your property. As a landlord, allowing pets is an opportunity to have more tenants interested in your rentals. Which means more tenants to choose from, which in turn can mean choosing good tenants for your vacancy. But even more than that, tenants with pets tend to be responsible renters who pay their rent on time and take care of their living spaces. For any landlord on the fence about making their home a pet friendly rental property, knowing the benefits of allowing pets in your rental property is important.
Making More Money
Maximizing rental income is what every landlord desires. Which is why considering pets, as a potential income source for your properties is key. While there can be risks to allowing pets, the risk of losing a good tenant who is a dog lover can outweigh them. With so many people attached to their pets, letting them move in with their furry friends is one of the best ways to fill a vacancy faster. Remember, time is money and the longer your property sits vacant, the less money it makes. Additionally, landlords who do allow pets tend to make more money because they charge a higher rent, a pet deposit, or pet rent. With this in mind, we offer some more insight on the benefits and risks of allowing pets in your rentals.
Benefits of Allowing Pets
Generally speaking, your pet owning tenants are more likely to become long-term renters. That’s because a pet friendly rental property is hard to find. And, pet owners especially dog owners, typically do not want to stress out their pets by moving. For this reason, when they do move into a pet friendly rental, they tend to be the ones who always renew their leases. Pet owners often earn higher than average incomes and are more responsible. Not only are pet owners more attentive and conscientious, they are also willing to put in extra effort beyond themselves. That’s because taking care of a pet requires a lot of time and attention. Which means, pet owners will likely put that same energy toward taking care of your rental property. Because, they view it as a home.
Because so many people have pets, your pool of prospective tenants becomes much larger if you allow pets. In fact, pet-friendly rentals attract so many prospective tenants that you can actually find better-quality tenants. Today, renting with pets is more popular than ever. According to The Humane Society, over 72% of renters have pets. When landlords allow pets, the number of qualified rental applicants dramatically increases. As a result, it gives a landlord more options for finding great tenants. And, great tenants stay longer, which keeps turnover costs down.
Risks of Allowing Pets
Allowing pets on your rental property can also pose risks, although some can be reduced. Pet damage is one of the biggest reasons landlords look for pet free renters. From scratch marks and chewed wood to bad odors and damaged landscaping, property damage can happen as a result of allowing pets. If litter boxes are not clean, or dogs are not groomed or bathed regularly, odors can build up in common areas. Additionally, excessive barking can be disruptive to neighbors making it hard to keep noise at manageable levels. Finally, you may want to require pet owners to have adequate renters insurance if you do allow pets. That’s because renters insurance provides an extra layer of protection for landlords.
Mitigating Your Risks of Allowing Pets
While there are many benefits to having a pet friendly rental property like making more money, there are also risks. First, find out if allowing pets will impact your insurance premium. Typically, most insurers allow most breeds of dogs, cats, birds, and fish with minimal to no additional charges. Make sure to include size and breed restrictions on dogs, and consider allowing only one pet per unit. Additionally, collecting a pet deposit and/or a monthly pet rent will help cover repairs to the unit if necessary.
Having a clear pet policy, outlined in your lease agreement, will help minimize risks while establishing clear expectations. Finally, make sure to do thorough tenant screening to determine if a tenant is a good fit for your property. It may help you determine their level of responsibility as pet owner. After all, it’s your rental property so make sure to do a comprehensive background check including a prospective tenant’s credit, criminal, and eviction history.
Pet Policy Tips (Addressing Pets in your Lease Agreement):
- Pet Rent: address the amount you will charge
- Pet Deposit: address the amount you will charge and if it is refundable or not
- Require Renters Insurance: this will provide your tenants with needed coverage
- Size & Breed: clearly state what types of pets you allow
- Picking Up After Pets: where to dispose of waste
- Customize: add what ever lease rules you need to identify all of your expectations
Having a clear pet policy outlined in your lease agreement will help minimize risk and establish clear expectations if you allow pets in your rentals. Keep in mind, the decision to make your investment a pet friendly rental property is one that should not be taken lightly. If you are struggling to create or enforce a pet policy, consider hiring a property management company. Our company is well versed on how to handle furry friends of all shapes and sizes. Contact us today at (858) 576-2176 to learn more about our property management services.