Pets in Rentals: Should Landlords Consider Them?

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Millennials are getting married, buying houses and according to statistics, they are buying more and more pets. As a whole, an estimated 68% of American households have at least one pet. It used to be the norm for people to get married and immediately procreate. Today, they are getting married and immediately buying poodles.

As the number of dogs and cats increases, so do the cases of landlords, property owners and homeowners associations turning down residents for their pets, seeing them as a liability. But they may not be seeing the whole picture clearly, as having a pet-friendly environment could be a huge benefit for a property owner.

For starters, allowing pets can attract more residents. More pets means a larger pool of potential tenants. Some new builds are even being custom designed for animal owners with dog wash stations, enclosed dog parks and even doggy daycares. Pet owners are notorious for over spending on their animals, allowing property owners to charge a premium for additional, pet-friendly amenities.

Animals typically cause more wear and tear on units than there normally would be. Some places charge animal owners a premium of say, $50 extra per month or an additional pet deposit. Given the scarcity in pet-friendly rentals, pet owners tend to be more than willing to pay this extra fee, increasing the margin on your rents.

If you are seeking long term residents, the animal lovers may be just that. Pet-friendly units are not so easy to find. Chances are residents would stay much longer, once they become established. As a pet develops his/her routine, their owners may not be willing to uproot them from an established home. This means lower turnover, minimizing vacancy expenses.

While pets can shake up the system already established by landlords, property managers and HOAs, the benefits can be well worth it. If you don’t know where to start in terms of enforcing pet policies, hire a property manager who will have all of the experience necessary to handle animal-related matters. It could easily be the dawn of a new era of success that can be shared with our furry friends.