March 10, 2020

A landlord decision – Pet friendly or not?

Australia might have a reputation for being a pet loving nation but ask any tenant about their experience renting with pets and a whole different story unfolds.

Finding a rental property which accommodates four-legged friends can prove a challenge. And for landlords, this offers a wealth of potential for those willing to embrace a furry tenant.

So, when it comes to your property, should you be a pet friendly landlord or not? Well, in short, it really depends…

The benefits of a pet-friendly property

According to Domain, Australia has one of the highest rates of pet ownership in the world, with 63 per cent of households considering an animal part of the family.

That’s a major percentage of the market who wants to bring their four-legged (or scaly or feathered) friend along when it comes to finding a new rental home.

Over the years that’s made advertising your rental property as pet friendly an attraction for a wider market of renters, and in many cases, tenants are willing to pay a little more for the privilege of bringing their pet.

In reflection of this, Domain also notes the laws are changing to make it easier for tenants to have pets. Where once states like Queensland required landlords to grant permission, soon they’ll be making it a lot harder to refuse the right to have a pet.

So, what should you consider as a landlord?

Is your home suited to pets?

Different apartment buildings have different by-laws when it comes to whether pets are welcome or not, while some homes are more suited to specific types of animals than others.

For example, most middle-sized to large dogs require a fenced yard to run around in, and in some homes this simply isn’t practical.

Meanwhile, that soft wood floor you recently installed may give you pause for thought when it comes to allowing small dogs in your newly renovated home.

But should your home be suited to pets it could be worth your while, and as a landlord you can place conditions on your property.

What sort of conditions can you have?

Depending on the laws in your state, you can write pet conditions into your tenancy agreement. These can range from specifying that pets are only allowed outside, to the fact that carpets need to be cleaned once a year.

You can also ask for pet references from previous real estate agents, and as crazy as it sounds these are becoming more common.

Pet references help you determine whether the animal in question might have a tendency to bark or be destructive, which is important to know from the outset when it comes to protecting your investment.

The bottom line is the rental market is becoming more pet friendly, and as a landlord you can make your property appealing to more people and also charge a little more for the privilege of having pets at your home.

You can also take steps to ensure those pets suit your property, and your property suits them.

If you’re looking for property managers who will work with you as a landlord to ensure your property retains its value and appeal, we can assist. You can learn more about the Eview property management difference here.