Rental property owners are now integrating pet-friendly amenities in their apartments to allow renters to keep their favorite animal companions.
The dog is humankind’s best friend, and this explains why it is the most domesticated pet. According to statistics in the United States, 63.4 million households own a dog, followed by 43 million households that own a cat.
Today, pets are an integral part of most families. Even rental property owners are now integrating pet-friendly amenities in their apartments to allow renters to keep their favorite animal companions.
So, what’s the benefit of your apartments being pet-friendly?
Being Pet-Friendly Means Higher Rent
Just as in the law of demand, fewer housing facilities means higher rent for the few available. Of course, it will cost you more to set up the necessary facilities to make your apartment pet-friendly, but you can compensate for this with a slightly higher rent.
Rental property owners can also set non-refundable pet fees, and because renters want to keep their family together, they will willingly pay the amount. They can again ask for a damage deposit to ensure the property is covered in case of damages, or demand compensation for pet damages.
Besides, you don’t have to worry much about your property. People committed to keeping their pets tend to be careful with their animal companions and ensure they do not become a threat.
Pet-Friendly Apartments Mean Trust
Allowing pets indicates that you trust the tenants and believe they can take good care of their pets.
In the traditional tenancy agreements or where pets are not allowed, the relationships between renters and landlords tend to feel tense. A total ban on pets creates the feeling that the landlord mistrusts tenants or believes they will leave the property in bad shape.
On the other hand, allowing pets indicates that you trust the tenants and believe they can take good care of their pets. Renters will obviously feel happy about a landlord who accommodates their lifestyles rather than limiting them.
It is challenging to find pet-friendly apartments, making pet owners want to stay longer in your rental property if it is pet-friendly. While they may only be there for lack of other housing options, you still earn your income at the end of the month.
Further, some pets, such as dogs, get fond of the surroundings and will recognize the apartment as home. As such, even the owners will be unwilling to shift to a new residence.
Strained landlord-tenant relationships are also a common cause of residence shifts by renters. Since marking your rental property pet-friendly means trusting your tenants’ level of responsibility, you may have more healthy relationships, so they are less likely to want to shift.
Happier and Healthier Tenants
Pets help keep tenants relaxed so your apartment feels like home for the renters and they will want to stay.
Pets have many health and non-health-related benefits. They provide protection, help ease stress, and provide company, among other advantages. These benefits help landlords to have healthy and happy tenants, thus reducing the chances of strained relationships. The pets keep them relaxed, and your apartment feels like home for the renters.
Also, a pet-friendly apartment means there are no chances of tenants trying to sneak in their pets. The policy may not allow all kinds of animals, but it probably covers the most obvious pets. Attempting to sneak in unauthorized animal companions is among the issues that could strain tenant-landlord relationships.
In addition, pet owners, and especially dog owners, know the importance of exercise. The animals can play around with toys, but a morning run or walk goes a long way. Most owners prefer to take them out for these walks and runs so they benefit from the exercise.
Happy and healthy tenants will feel free to communicate. They can speak out their grievances and allow you to take action rather than opting to find other low-income apartments.
Allowing Pets Gives You an Upper Hand
Given that over 70% of renters own pets, making your apartments pet-friendly opens them up to more tenants.
It’s easy for tenants to try to get their pets into an apartment under the radar with the hope of not getting caught if your policy restricts them. Of course, this creates a tense mood, even if you are yet to find out.
However, allowing pets and setting out a clear policy will enable you to be notified of the pets coming in and have a chance to screen them. You can take note of aggressive animals that could be a threat and decide whether to allow them or which safety measures to take.
You can inspect the health of the animals and ascertain that they have the necessary vaccinations. Also, you could take the initiative and provide some services, such as spaying before entry.
You Will Have More Tenants
Given that over 70% of renters own pets, making your apartments pet-friendly opens them up to more tenants. Further, it means there will be fewer vacancy times since tenants will be unwilling to relocate, and so you can earn a steady rental income year-round.
Your Property will Attract Millennials
This demographic is a significant proportion of the current consumers, and most property owners want them as part of their tenants. It’s already a fact that millennials are favoring pets to children. This demographic is a significant proportion of the current consumers, and most property owners want them as part of their tenants.
Besides, companies are also applying this trick, and you are likely to find more pet-friendly offices in the corporate world than ever.
The Business Insider released a report in February 2020, claiming that millennials want financial freedom or homeownership. Homeownership comes with the freedom to do what they want, so a restriction on pet ownership would probably not trend well with them.
It Could Mean More Safety
One of the reasons dogs are our best friends is their ability to provide the owner with protection. Trained dogs can detect strangers with ill motives or trespassers, especially at night, and react quickly. They are intelligent animals that can quickly learn and interpret voices and body language.
The skill can help them interpret a situation and know when the owners are in danger or when something is not right. As such, allowing tenants to keep pets will provide safety not just to them, but to your property as well.
Having dogs and other pets around can also help you drive away dangerous animals that find their way into the compound. For instance, cats will keep destructive rodents out of your complex.
Wrapping Up Pet-Friendly Benefits
Although making your rental property pet-friendly might need additional resources that can be a bit costly, it will pay off at the end. Most renters will prefer renting where they feel the landlord understands their needs and gives them the freedom they deserve. Moreover, property owners who make their rentals pet-friendly are likely to increase the rent without experiencing a protest from the tenants.
Given the many benefits associated with making rental properties pet-friendly, owners should include the resources. That way you can be guaranteed of all your rentals being full throughout the year.
Justin Becker is a property owner in the state of Michigan and has a passion for managing communities. He owns apartment complexes and mobile home communities, and has been writing his own blogs for his properties for several years.
Reprinted with permission of the Rental Housing Journal. The RentalHousingJournal.com is an interactive community of multifamily investors, independent rental home owners, residential property management professionals and other rental housing and real estate professionals. It is the most comprehensive source for news and information for the rental housing industry. Their website features exclusive articles and blogs on real estate investing, apartment market trends, property management best practices, landlord tenant laws, apartment marketing, maintenance and more.