To Accept or Not Accept Pets: A Guide for New Landlords in 2023

As a new landlord, one of the most important decisions you will make is whether or not to accept pets in your rental property. While many tenants are seeking pet-friendly accommodations, there are both advantages and disadvantages to consider. In this post, we will explore the pros and cons of accepting pets, helping you make an informed decision for your property.

Pros of Accepting Pets

  1. Attract a larger pool of potential tenants: By allowing pets, you open your rental property to a larger market of potential tenants. With more than half of US households owning pets, you can attract a wider range of applicants, increasing the likelihood of finding the right tenant for your property.

  2. Higher rental income: Pet-friendly rentals can command higher rents, as tenants are willing to pay a premium for pet-friendly accommodations. Additionally, you can charge a nonrefundable pet fee or monthly pet rent to cover any potential damages or additional cleaning costs.

  3. Longer tenancies: Pet owners tend to stay in their rentals longer, as finding pet-friendly homes and condos can be challenging. Longer tenancies mean less turnover, which translates to reduced vacancy rates and less maintenance.

  4. Happier tenants: Allowing pets can contribute to a more positive atmosphere in your rental property. For many people, pets are an integral part of their family and contribute to their overall well-being. By accepting pets, you support your tenants’ happiness and quality of life.

Cons of Accepting Pets

  1. Potential property damage: The primary concern for many landlords is the potential for property damage caused by pets. This can range from minor wear and tear to more significant issues such as scratched wood and vinyl plank flooring, damaged and stained carpets, or damaged doors and window sills, even glass.

  2. Noise and nuisance complaints: Pets, particularly dogs, can cause noise and disturbances for neighbors. This can lead to complaints and potentially strained relationships with surrounding tenants or property owners.

  3. Increased maintenance and cleaning costs: Pets can lead to additional maintenance and cleaning costs. Hair, dander, and lingering odors may require more frequent and thorough cleanings. You may also need to invest in more durable materials for flooring, doors, and hardware to withstand wear and tear from pets.

  4. Allergies and liability concerns: Tenants with allergies may be deterred from renting your property if pets are allowed. Additionally, you may face liability issues if a tenant’s pet causes harm to another party or their property. To address these concerns, you can set breed restrictions or require proof of vaccinations and renter’s insurance that includes pet liability coverage.

Ultimately, the decision to accept pets in your rental property depends on your comfort level and the specific circumstances of your property. While there are potential risks and additional costs associated with allowing pets, the benefits of a larger tenant pool, higher rental income, and longer tenancies may outweigh these concerns.

Make sure discuss your goals and options with your Property Manager, and they provide a well-crafted pet policy, like NestTenders offers, can help you make the best choice for your rental property.