Tenants with pets do not necessarily spell out doom for you as the property owner in the form of scratched walls, floors, discolored tiles, and seemingly endless repairs around the property. Even though the risks do exist, this category of tenants can also come along with advantages for you. To avoid any misunderstandings, you should include a clear pet policy in your lease agreement.
What Are the Benefits of Renting to Tenants with Pets?
Take a brief moment and consider what good there might be if you had a tenant who has a dog, cat, bird, or any other animal parent:
As a landlord hosting tenants with pets, you have an opportunity to increase your income through pet deposits, pet fees, or pet rent. To charge this, you must consult with your local authorities to identify which laws are applicable in this scenario. It is also key to note that laws can be different from one state to another.
Host Happy People
Pet owners generally keep their pets for several reasons, top of which is their companionship. This is why companion animals are kept in many homes. The benefit of this to you as a landlord is that your clients are likely to be more comfortable and stay longer.
Improve Your Chances of Leasing
A rental property’s occupancy rate determines the financial well-being of your investment. As a landlord accepting tenants with pets, you have a wider pool of potential tenants. With this, you are not limited in whom you can accept as tenants and are not forced to make bad decisions such as renting out to a tenant with a proven history of poor rent payment.
This also highlights the need to source property management companies that will screen potential tenants by looking into factors such as credit score, criminal history, rent-paying history, and suitability for your property.
With pet dynamics, it’s more beneficial for their owners to reside in one place for a long period of time. Moving with pets and location unfamiliarity prove to be challenging. With long-term clients, the landlord is assured a steady income.
It’s generally accepted that pet owners are tasked with the responsibility of raising their animals just as well as they would their own children. Some of the responsibilities include handling veterinary visits, cleaning after their pets, and training their pets to live with people.
Looking after a pet can be seen as an example of the tenant’s ability to properly care for the property. With this, property owners trust pet owners to handle their property respectfully.
Challenges of Hosting Tenants with Pets
Animals are animals, and with this in mind, it’s sensible to expect risks from these arrangements. Below are some of the challenges a landlord can expect to face hosting pet owners:
Pets can be noisy when playing, hurt, happy, or excited. This can be particularly annoying for neighbors who work from home, study from home, or are trying to catch some quiet rest after a long day of hard work. This can be challenging when it comes to conflict resolution, especially where impatient parties are involved.
Damage to Property
Pets such as dogs and cats can be destructive when playing or when looking for something to keep themselves entertained. These damages can be in the form of scratched floors, walls, and doors.
If not effectively potty-trained, pets are also known to pee on floors and walls causing stains. This can be challenging especially where there are no defined policy guidelines that outline factors such as repair fees.
Various pets have distinct smells which can be unpleasant to other tenants. For instance, in the case of shared facilities such as lifts, pets can leave their smell behind irritating other tenants. This potentially causes conflict among tenants and should be something to consider when leasing to tenants with pets.
Possible Injuries and Allergies
Animals react to triggers such as threats and those that have not been trained well, can cause injuries by attacking people or other animals. Similarly, pets cause allergic reactions to some individuals allergic to fur. If this is a next-door neighbor, pet ownership becomes the basis for conflict among tenants. A clear policy can help you deal with issues like these.
How to Host Tenants with Pets
As a landlord ready to accept tenants that are pet parents, one must be ready to go the full nine yards. Some of the things to consider are:
Fair Housing Laws
Even though some landlords can be adamant about hosting tenants with pets, the Law reigns supreme. People with disabilities are entitled to assistance animals, not considered pets. These service pets must be allowed into all rentals, even those that have a no-pet policy.
Should a pet cause injuries to a tenant, one must be ready with a plan to cater to medical emergencies.
Insurance plans can vary in what they cover. Some cover only certain pet breeds and not all. As such, it’s important that you are informed to avoid any surprises in spending.
Have a Clear Pet Policy
Landlords must ensure that the pet policy highlighted in their lease agreement is clear and has no inconsistencies. The specifics of pet handling, limitations or boundaries, and consequences of signed agreement terms violation must be clear.
A defined pet policy will protect the landlord from unforeseen expenses and provide the landlord with a sure course of action in various occurrences. Having a clear pet policy allows the tenant to enjoy their pet company within the provided limits.
If you are seeking property management services in Southwest Missouri and Southeast Kansas, Pro X is a proven result-driven company. Additional services such as consultancy on lease agreement drafting to cover pet policies are also offered by our team of trained and experienced professionals.
Some of the services offered include advertising your units, screening your rental applicants, handling rent payments, maintaining your property, and sending financial reports. This range of services is offered to the landlords depending on their needs. The aim of our professional service offering is to create the most value and returns for you on your investment.