Should you allow pets on your rental property?

man with dogs in the house

Did you ask yourself as a landlord, ‘should I allow pets on my rental?’.  There’s a good reason for that question. The USA is the topmost country in regards to our cat (76M) and dog (75M) population according to Statistics show that approximately 85 million families have a pet. That’s about 67% of households. Yet, only about 27% of homes listed on Zillow allow pets!

The old adage is true, time is money. A quick and easy way to set your rental home apart from the competition is to allow pets. Here are a few benefits that come with pet-friendly rentals:  

  1. It tends to get your home leased much quicker. Allowing pets is shown to get your home leased at least 10 days faster.
  2. Tenants allowed to have pets are more likely to renew their lease.
  3. Owners are usually able to get a higher rent amount.

At first thought, pets might seem scary to allow in your rental home. By allowing them, it increases the likelihood of wear and tear, possible noise complaints, and even a risk of injury. However, being well-informed and open-minded about it gives you a new perspective to allow a more effective solution that works for both landlord and tenant. 

Let’s break this down and really examine how to handle the risks implied by a pet-friendly rental: 

  1. You need to have a pet addendum that clearly defines the expectations you have when allowing pets in your rentals. Just a few of the topics that should be covered in the pet addendum are:
    1. A higher security deposit and full financial responsibility for any and all damage to both exterior and interior caused by the pet.
    2. Complete control and care of the pet when allowed outside of the home premises.
    3. Maintain cleanliness, noise, and nuisance at a low level, as well as adequately provide veterinary care.
    4. An animal control authority might be required for emergency circumstances. 
  2. As previously mentioned, allowing pets is also an avenue for additional revenue. Check your specific marketplace but we’ve seen upwards of $100 per month in extra rent. In some states, you can ask for a higher security deposit and even ask for a non-refundable pet fee. <