The human race has long had an affinity with animals, and many pet owners regard their dogs, cats and other animals as members of the family. This fact can create a dilemma for landlords, who might also have heard horror stories about the damage that some pets can do to properties. However, there are some compelling reasons to be a pet-friendly landlord and allow renters to have pets – albeit with conditions.
Here are six reasons to consider becoming a Pet-Friendly Landlord.
1. You Can Charge More
Pet owners know that having a pet in a rental unit is a privilege. It can be difficult to find a pet-friendly landlord. Pet owners are aware of the damage risks of having a pet. They fully expect to have to pay a premium in both the security deposit amount as well as the monthly rent. Most will gladly pay it.
2. Pet Owners Tend to Stay Longer
Because of the issues described above, once a pet owner finds a pet-friendly landlord and apartment that’s a good fit, they tend to stay longer. They may be more likely to agree to a longer lease at the outset as well, although landlords might consider enacting a six-month trial period for pet owners to assess the behavior and impact of their pets.
3. Pet Owners Tend to Be More Financially Secure
A Practical Apartment Management study authored by Edward N. Kelly found that 65 percent of pet owners earn an above average income — $50,000 per year or more. While tenant screening should still be used to verify income, employment and credit history, the odds of having a more financially viable tenant are increased by renting to pet owners. Therefore, it makes financial sense to consider becoming a pet-friendly landlord.
4. Easier to Keep Units Occupied
Being a pet-friendly landlord also increases the tenant pool substantially. This means that even when units are vacated, they won’t stay vacant for very long. Applicants who are pet owners also tend to be more serious about their inquiries, further expediting the process.
5. Healthier, Happier Tenants
Countless studies have been conducted showing the benefits of pet ownership on the health and well being of everyone in the household. Having a pet has been scientifically proven to help lower blood pressure, boost mood and reduce stress levels. Happier tenants tend to be better stewards of the property and generally easier to get along with as well.
6. Tenant Screening Can Inform Your Decision
While most pet owners and animal lovers tend to be pretty responsible, this is not always the case across the board. Tenant screening can assist with determining if the applicant has ever had an eviction, financial problems, large bills due to pet damage, a criminal past, and many other tenant screening red flags. Professional tenant screening is one of the best tools for finding the top rental candidates in terms of both pet owners and non-pet owners. It can help to bring peace of mind in knowing the best decisions have been made.
Many landlords are averse to allowing pets in their rental units. However, there are a number of potential benefits they might not have thought of. Landlords should strongly consider these six compelling reasons for having pet-friendly apartments.