Allowing tenants to bring pets will broaden your tenant pool and can also lower pet turnover. Downsides include risks, such as damage to property or injury to neighbors. Make your pets policy clear to future tenants. Use the various options outlined below and choose which policies you would want for your tenants on pets.
Option 1: Allow pets of certain size/weight or breeds
This is the most common policy for landlords who allow pets. Understand that certain animals and breeds can be more aggressive than others. Also keep in mind of the space of the property and the size of the pet.
Option 2: Require pet approval
Some landlords keep an open-pet policy. Tenants who wish to move in their pet must notify the landlord, and the landlord may appropve if there seems to be no foreseable problems (i.e. pets such as turtles or goldfish). Make clear that the pet causes any issues, the landlord has the right to terminate this open pet policy.
Option 3: Charge a pet fee
Some landlords charge a fee on top of the security deposit to protect from additional wear and tear on the property caused by the pet. Some landlords charge an exceptionally high fee to deter pets, or to cover more than what’s realistic for possible damages. Also keep in mind that charging an extra pet fee is not legal in some states.
Option 4: Make tenants to have insurance to cover their pets
Landlords can require tenants to carry renters insurance that also cover risk of pet injuries or damages.