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Should You Allow Dogs? 5 Considerations for Property Managers

Over 65% of American families have at least one animals they keep as a pet. Over a third of these families are headed by Millennials who are getting dogs rather than having children. Millennials are the prime rental market; however, property managers are not lifting their bans on pets. If you are a property manager who is debating on whether to allow residents to have dogs, here are 5 things you should consider.

  1. Who is Your Target Renter?Depending on your target market, you may not have much demand for a pet friendly property. Many mid-life residents won’t have or want pets because of active and busy lifestyles. Seniors are usually more prone to want limited maintenance pets such as cats or birds rather than dogs that must be walked; however, Millennials and families with children are often more attracted to properties that allow dogs and other animals.
  2. Pets Can Bring Extra Revenue-Pet owners are often willing to pay more rent, an additional pet rent, or a pet deposit to have their pet live with them. In fact, pet owners usually expect this extra expense. Consider whether the extra revenue can offset the potential cost of turning the unit when vacant.
  3. Resident Retention-When a property manager allows pets the resident retention rates increase. Because many properties don’t allow pets when a renter finds a place that does, they are more likely to continue renewing their lease. If a property manager doesn’t allow pets, but the renter wants one, they may look somewhere else for their renting needs.
  4. Check your insurance-Your property insurance may not allow dogs, certain breeds, or have restrictions on the number of pets in a unit. Residents don’t always realize that it is not always up to the property manager whether they can have a dog, insurance has the final say on the matter.
  5. Requiring Renter’s Insurance-Many property managers require tenants to obtain renters insurance, especially if they have a dog. Requiring this and maintaining the records in the resident file can ease your mind for the liability you as a property manager may face.

Pets are part of many people’s family; however, they can be a huge liability or risk for property managers. Weigh the pros and cons of allowing pets in your properties before making a final decision on your pet policy.