Pet-Friendly Rentals: Benefits and Considerations for Landlords
For many homes, pets are considered family. In fact, approximately 72% of renters have a furry companion that is non-negotiable when it comes to finding a place to live. In the dynamic landscape of property management, it’s becoming an increasingly popular decision to cater to these renters and make pet-friendly rentals more openly available. While there are advantages to this pet-friendly approach, there are also considerations that landlords and property managers must take to establish realistic boundaries and a harmonious relationship with the tenant.
Benefits of Pet-Friendly Rentals
Stand Out with a Positive Property Image
Allowing your tenants to live alongside their companions fosters a sense of compassion, kindness, and consideration and reflects a positive image of your property.
Expand Your Tenant Pool
As mentioned above, approximately 72% of renters have a pet making for a massive pool of untapped rental candidates. Finding a suitable rental accommodation for themselves and their pets is a top priority for most of these renters, and opening up your doors to this demographic greatly expands your potential for finding a responsible and reliable tenant.
Increase Tenant Loyalty
Many pet owners are looking for a longer-term lease to provide their pets with stability, and once they find a pet-friendly home they are more likely to stick around and resign the lease. Most pet owners are also considered to be reliable, responsible, and committed making them attractive candidates to live in your property.
Heightened Rental Demand
In a time when pet-friendly rentals are on the rise, enabling a pet-friendly home can give you a competitive edge over the market. This increases the inquiries you’ll receive, boosts the likelihood for tenants to resign their lease, and decreases the amount of time your rental sits vacant meaning a more consistent rental income.
Increase Rental Rates and Deposit
Allowing pets opens the opportunity to charge more in rent, pet deposits, or a nonrefundable monthly pet fee. Most pet owners are willing to pay a premium for a home that allows their furry friends to live alongside them comfortably.
Considerations for Landlords and Property Managers
Establish a Clear and Comprehensive Pet Policy
This can include the size of pets, quantity, and guidelines to ensure responsible pet ownership and respectful boundaries. While some landlords outline breed restrictions, in this day and age, it is strongly recommended that you take the time to have a screening process with the tenant and their dog to gauge the temperament. So many times we are quick to write off dogs under a blanket statement such as “aggressive breed”, but end up dismissing loving pet owners with well-behaved dogs. This step can make for a more accepting and harmonious community.
Require Pet Deposits and Fees
Pet deposits are necessary to act as a safety net for any damages or accidents that may take place during residency.
Require Pet Liability Insurance
This is an additional layer of protection that you can require your tenants to invest in and can cover any property damage or incidents that may take place involving their pet.
Schedule Regular Inspections
Regular inspections can help maintain the property’s condition and ensure that tenants are adhering to and respecting rules and guidelines laid out in the pet policy. Abandoned animals after move-out should also be identified and handled.
Fostering a pet-friendly rental has many benefits, and with the proper considerations and precautions you can ensure the longevity of both your home and your tenants.