Should You Allow Pets in Your Rental Property?

In the video below, Peter with RL Property Management Group discusses things to consider when deciding whether to allow pets in your rental property.

An overview of our thoughts on pets is as follows:

Data To Consider

  • 60% of Franklin county Ohio residents have pets. Not allowing pets limits your prospective resident pool.

  • Renters with pets stay longer.

  • The trend among large building owners and institutional investors is toward being pet friendly.

  • Additional income from allowing pets can make up a significant portion of your free cash flow at the end of the year.

Pet Fees (Pet Rent and Pet Deposits)

  • Some residents will sneak animals in regardless of your policy. It is difficult to change this situation once it has happened so it can make sense to simply allow them for this reason alone.

  • We advise against refundable or non-refundable “pet deposits” of any kind. These deposits easily become confusing at move-out.

  • A recurring “pet rent” or similar fee should be charged monthly.

Damage and Repair Costs

  • Fears about pet damage are overblown. Heavy damage is rare and the normal level of damage is insignificant.

  • Humans cause way more damage than pets.

  • Extensive pet damage that does occasionally occur is typically under $1,000 to resolve.

  • Promptly address any pet issues such as dangerous pets, pet waste or visibly excessive pet damage that arise.

Recommendations

  • Do not restrict breed or weight (this is somewhat ambiguous, and is a hard screening item to implement and it makes enforcement difficult).

  • Cats and dogs should be the only pets you allow.

  • Two pet maximum.

  • Regular unit inspections are key to monitor the pet situation.

  • Double check with your insurance company to ensure you are covered for whatever you decide.

  • The privilege to house pets should come with a respective cost for the tenant and income for the landlord.

  • Be extremely clear in your lease about all things pets. Extremely….

  • Minimize the use of carpet in your rental. Luxury vinyl plank and real hardwoods are great choices.

If you are looking for a property management team that has several decades of experience dealing with issues like these, do not hesitate to reach out to RL Property Management Group.

RL Property Management Group, the only property management company in Columbus started and run by engineers. Our clients enjoy a premium property management experience without paying a premium price. RL Property Management is designed for reliability and performance.

In this video I'll discuss some best practices regarding pets in investment properties. We draw on our experience managing 350 units for the past six years and make some recommendations on if you should allow cats and dogs in your rental.