Chances are you're wary of allowing pets in a rental property. They have the potential to damage the property or annoy the neighbors, which can be discouraging. However, there are plenty of benefits to allowing pets.
Opening your property to pets can improve the quality of your renters, keep your units full longer, and even increase your income. Read on to find out how!
Get an Increased Tenant Pool
If you're having trouble finding good tenants who are interested in your property, allowing pets could help. Not only will allowing pets expand your potential tenant pool, it can actually increase the quality of the applicants.
Pet owners are likely to have a steady income and a high level of responsibility. Taking care of a pet requires regular expenses like feeding the pet and irregular expenses like taking them to the vet. Responsible pet owners will be financially secure enough to take on unexpected expenses.
That means they'll likely have enough financial security to pay their rent on time and in full, every month. They're also likely to take care of the space, as they're responsible enough to take care of another living creature.
Reduce Tenant Turnover
Another benefit to allowing pets in a rental property is a decrease in tenant turnover. There are fewer rental units that allow pets than units that forbid them. This makes a tenant in a pet-friendly apartment less likely to move.
It's not just people that hate moving, either! Moving can have a negative impact on a pet's health and anxiety levels. Pet owners will try to minimize disruptions to their pet's lives, so they will stay in place longer.
Pet owners are also likely to be happier, as animal companionship can improve your mood. Happier tenants are less likely to leave.
Increase Income with Pet Fees
A great piece of landlord advice is to allow pets as a way to boost your income a little. When you allow pets in your rental property, you can charge your tenants a pet deposit or a monthly pet fee as part of the rent.
Pet fees can be as little as $5 a month, or as much as $25 a month. This is an extra assurance in case the pets cause damage in the unit that wouldn't happen under other circumstances.
You also have the option of adding a pet deposit to the security deposit. Depending on the type of animal and local regulations, you can charge as much as $500 in a refundable deposit to cover any potential problems the pets could cause.
A Note on ADA Requirements for Service Animals
While you can charge pet fees for most animals, support animals and service animals are exempt. The American's with Disabilities Act has provisions for service animals and medical assistant animals. These animals aren't pets, so they are not subject to pet deposits or rental fees.
The laws governing support pets are less clear. If a tenant says they have a support pet rather than a service animal, you should ask for clarification before charging a pet deposit.
Consider Allowing Pets in a Rental Property
While there are some drawbacks to having pets in a rental property, the benefits are appealing. Not only can you increase your rental income a little, but you're more likely to have happy, stable, long-term tenants.
If you're worried about increased responsibility as a landlord in a pet-friendly building, we can help! Contact Wolfnest Property Management to learn more about the ways we can help you make your property profitable and easy to handle.