People love their pets.
The ASPCA estimated that approximately 44% of the households in the United States own a dog and 35% of them own a cat.
With pet ownership rates being so high, rental properties are adding in consideration for families with furry friends.
However, pets come with a lot of responsibility and sometimes, damage risk.
The smartest thing for property management to do in the case of animals is to manage the residence with caution and to be clear and concise on contractual agreements.
Below are some key factors for maintaining the condition of your property when making it a pet friendly rental.
1. Do An Extensive Pet Screening
Some animals may do well in most environments and others may not. It may be wise to get a sufficient amount of details on the pet if your rental is very small or has certain characteristics that are easily damaged.
Schedule an appointment to meet with the tenant and their pet so that you are able to witness the animal’s personality and temperament first hand.
This could help you to discern whether or not the specific breed or species would potentially be more prone to severe damages.
This may also allow you to set fees accordingly if you are going in the direction of charging a pet fee range.
2. Charge Pet and Violation Fees
Speaking of fees, this is a common thing that rental managers do for pet friendly rental properties.
Since an increasing number of landlords are allowing a wider range of animals in the homes, tacking on some extra cash to the rent every month may deter someone from continuing to pay.
Consider asking pet owners for a nonrefundable fee that is required with upfront leasing fees.
Another option is retrieving fines when pet-related issues occur. Charging a violation fee will not only help to cover damage expenses, it will show tenants how serious you are about preserving the property.
3. Include Specific Lease Agreements for a Pet Friendly Rental
You should provide notice of a pet contract to the possible renters at the time of lease signing. The agreement should include specifics of what you expect from them in regards to the responsibility of potential damages.
Communicating written clarity of restrictions and regulations in a lease is the best thing to do to ensure that tenants have a solid understanding.
It will be beneficial to have an agreement in writing with the tenant’s signature in case you need to reference it on future occasions. This will help to further protect your property if problems become continuous.
4. Require Pets have Vaccinations and Be Spayed/Neutered
Make sure to only allow pets that you approve of. Pets may be a little less likely to become problematic if they have been vaccinated and spayed/neutered by owners. The average pet owner will have records of vet visits, so this should not be too much of a problem.
There is often controversy over the safety of spaying and neutering pets.
However, it has been reported that the benefits of these medical procedures eliminate heat cycles (which cause some animals to “spray” unpleasant smells around the home), prevent unexpected litters, and decrease behavioral issues. The procedure can also help male dogs be more content and potentially reduce their urges to roam away from home.
Check your state laws to ensure that you are in compliance with enforcing this requirement.
Still having trouble integrating pets into your property rentals or other pet related issues? Let us know below or send us a message directly for more solutions.