Pets or No Pets: The Homeowner Dilemma
Every owner wants the same thing to rent their house quickly, get top rent, and find a good paying tenant. However, most don’t want pets in their home. I understand not wanting pets. They may cause damage to new carpet, scratches on the walls, etc.
A 60/40 Renter Split
If you ask these same owners if we did an open house for your rental… how would you feel about getting ten families to stop by to see your home and you only allow four families in to view your home. The other six families… please go away we do not want you.
This seems counterproductive to renting this property as quickly as possible. But this is what you are doing when you insist on a no pet policy
According to a recent study done by the American Veterinary Medical Association the percentage of U.S. households with pets reached about 60% of all households. By comparison, about 35% of U.S. households have children.
Meeting the Family Dog: Tenant Insight
Asking to meet the pet(s) prior to signing documents may provide great insight into how they’ll treat your home. As a property owner there are some things you can do to help protect your investments as well as keep your property available to all.
1. Take a non refundable pet deposit. Ultimately this is investment and a pet will add some wear and tear on the property. A pet deposit based on the size of the dog will pay for that wear and tear. We at Innovative Property Solutions have created a pet addendum to help you with this.
2. Remove carpet. Pets do the most damage to carpet. Adding tile or hardwood floors will not only add value to your home but will also minimize the damage a pet could do
If you follow some or all of these tips you will be able to have your house available to everyone who is looking and protect your investment.
**Update** It is also important as homeowner to review your policy for dog bite coverage. You should understand that whether or not a homeowner’s insurance policy will cover a dog bite claim is almost entirely dependent on the specific language of the insurance policy. Most insurance companies use standardized forms published by the Insurance Services Office (“ISO”). These forms define, limit, and explain what types of claims are covered. Here are some of the common exclusions under the ISO forms.
First, some homeowner insurance policies exclude dog bite claims entirely and any claims arising from a dog bite. If the policy is worded properly, this type of exclusion will be upheld by the courts.
Second, it is important what type of dog bit the individual. For instance, if it is a pit bull or pit bull mix, most insurance policies exclude a claim arising from a bite from a dog with a “known vicious propensity.” This characterization can be based on the breed of dog, or the homeowner’s knowledge that the dog has injured another person before.
Knowing your coverage will help you decide if you want to allow pets or what kind of pets you will allow.