Guide to Renting to Tenants with Pets

Guide to Renting to Tenants with Pets

Nov. 27, 2020

guide to renting to tenants with pets


As a landlord, it may seem anxiety-inducing to rent to pet owners for various reasons. There may be damage and noise by having pets inside the rental unit. However, by being open-minded and seeing the positive side, you’d find that most pet owners are responsible. They’re bound to ensure discipline for their pets and have respect for the property and other inhabitants around the rental premises.

Benefits of Renting to Pet Owners

If your property is pet-friendly, you’re bound to enjoy the advantages of welcoming pets. Here are just a few of them:

  1. High demand for tenant occupancy

Fewer pet-friendly rentals are available so this means your property will rarely be vacated. Prospective tenants jump at the chance of renting a unit that allows their furry companion.

  1. More long-term renters

Since it’s challenging to find pet-welcoming rentals, pet owners tend to stay for a long time in a rental unit. This reduces the need for time and money spent on marketing your property.

  1. Likely to have responsible and high-quality tenants

Given that pet ownership entails more responsibility, pet owners are more likely to respect the rental policies. They also avoid the risk of being evicted from the property since only fewer pet-friendly rentals exist.

Outlining Pet Restrictions

pet restrictions


Permitting your tenants to have pets is not something you can decide on a whim. It will help you a great deal to outline certain pet restrictions. These are some of the following factors you can consider:

Tips for Accepting Pets

When you’ve made the decision to allow pets in your rental property, you can apply these tips to make the process smoother:

pet permits



Pet Checklist

Even if your property is open to pet ownership, you still reserve the right to limit or restrict the pet-owning conditions. All pets are different so it’s best to assess each potential renter and the pet. It’s also advisable to gather information about the pets beforehand. Here are things you can ask prior to welcoming a new tenant and the pet:

  1. What kind of pets do you own? How many do you have?
  2. How long have you been a pet owner?
  3. Can you submit a pet reference from a former landlord or your pet’s veterinarian?
  4. Have your pets completed vaccinations? Are you consistent with annual vaccines? Is your pet free from ticks, fleas and worms?
  5. Who is the alternate caregiver of your pet when you’re not around?
  6. Has your pet been spayed or neutered?
  7. Is your pet trained in using a litter box?
  8. Is your pet exercised frequently? How often?
  9. What’s the length of time that your pet is left on its own? How does it react to being alone?
  10. Do you have any pet sitter in case you’re away?
  11. How does your pet act when surrounded by new people?
  12. Can you show licenses and permits for your pet?
  13. Has your pet undergone any official pet training (for dogs)?

pet checklist

Pet Reference

Requesting a pet reference allows a landlord to gauge a prospective tenant’s sense of responsibility in terms of pet ownership. They can secure a written letter from a former landlord or veterinarian. However, keep in mind that new pet owners may not have a pet reference.

Pet reference letters from a former landlord can provide answers to these key questions:

Meanwhile, pet reference letters from a veterinarian can yield answers to these key questions:

Pet Clause

It’s helpful to attach a pet clause to the property rental agreement. It will detail the conditions of pet responsibility to the potential tenants. By signing this pet clause, the tenant is legally bound to adhere to the set conditions contained in the lease.

Pet Damage Deposit

As a way to minimize property damage, the landlord can request a pet damage deposit from the potential tenant. This gives the landlord more peace of mind. Note that service animals are not considered to be pets. Thus, they’re exempted from the pet damage deposit collection.

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