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The Benefits of Being Pet-Friendly for San Diego Rental Property Owners - Article Banner

We really love pets. Do you love pets?

If you have them, you probably love your pets. But, when you’re renting out an investment property in San Diego or the surrounding areas, those pets that belong to your tenants might make you a bit nervous. They can scratch up your new hardwood floors. They can dig up the garden. They can leave behind fleas and waste and odors and other un-pleasantries after they move out. 

For tenants who have pets, those animals are part of the family. You’re not going to find a lot of renters willing to move into your property if you don’t also allow their pets. 

We understand the concerns you may have about opening your investment property to tenants with pets. You are right to have some concerns about the liability that comes with allowing pets and the messes that can be made. 

But, it still benefits you to allow pets into your rental property. When you have a strong pet policy or you work with an experienced team of San Diego property managers, you have less to worry about and a lot to gain by allowing pets. 

In general, the benefits of renting out a pet-friendly property almost always outweigh the risks. 

Here are some of the benefits you’ll enjoy by renting out a pet-friendly property.

Pet-Friendly Properties in San Diego Have Lower Vacancy Rates

Let the statistics convince you if we can’t. More than half of all the San Diego tenants looking for a new home have at least one pet. Not allowing pets will eliminate a significant part of your tenant pool. 

The pandemic only increased pet ownership. People began working from home and wanted companions. With remote work remaining popular, pets are a big deal.  

Don’t limit your tenant pool.  

Few tenants to choose from means longer vacancy times. It will take you extra days and even weeks to attract tenants who are moving in without pets. The entire leasing process is likely to move a lot faster when you offer a pet-friendly property. 

Think about what vacancy costs you. When your property is unoccupied, you lose money that can never be earned back. Leaving your rental home vacant just because you don’t want to allow pets will end up costing you more than any pet damage could every cost. 

You’re Renting to Better San Diego Tenants 

We don’t have any hard data on this, but we can tell you from our experience that the tenants we accept who own pets are generally good people, and they tend to be responsible, positive renters. When people care about their pets, they also care about their homes.

We know there’s risk. We know you worry about damage. However, pets actually cause much less damage than people do. Good pet owners are good tenants. They take care of their animals, they keep up with vet visits, and they take care of your property. If you screen for good pet care, you have less to worry about.

Pets Increase Retention 

You limit vacancy with pet-friendly properties, and you also limit turnover.

Pet owners stay in place. They don’t want to pay another pet fee or deposit. They don’t want to spend time looking for a new home that will welcome them and their animals. 

The Human Animal Bond Research Institute (HABRI) and Michelson Found Animals Foundation recently did a report on pet-inclusive housing, and found that residents in pet-friendly housing stay 21 percent longer than those in non-pet-friendly housing. You’ll get more from your tenants when you allow pets. 

You’re Not Inviting Lease Violations

We know that a majority of tenants have pets. If you don’t allow pets in your rental home, you don’t have the opportunity to create a pet policy that allows you to hold tenants accountable for those pets. 

You might find yourself in a situation where tenants are sneaking animals into your property. 

We’re not saying that tenants are dishonest or that they would intend to deceive you. However, if they find themselves in possession of a new dog or cat and they know they’re not allowed to bring them into your rental property…they might bring them in, anyway. 

This puts you in the awkward position of having to tell your tenants to get rid of the pet and come into compliance with the lease agreement if you do discover an unauthorized pet. 

We hear about landlords dealing with tenants who sneak in pets all the time. Avoid that temptation by allowing pets. This gives you more control over the animals living in your property. 

Invest in a Good Pet Policy

Remember that a strong pet policy can protect you and your rental property from the potential of pet damage or mess. Your pet policy can:

  • Restrict dog breeds, especially if your insurance company doesn’t cover what they consider “dangerous breeds.”
  • Restrict the number of pets, ages of pets, and sizes of pets. You can say you’ll allow up to two cats or two dogs. You can say no to puppies but yes to mature dogs. Maybe you’ll allow dogs under 20 pounds. 
  • Include standards you have for cleanliness and behavior. Require all dogs to be on leashes when outside of the home, for example. 
  • Help you screen pets as carefully as you screen tenants. Ask for vet records if you want. 
  • Require tenants to clean up after their animals, whether inside or outside of the property. 

You can also ask for a pet deposit. This will incentivize your tenants to keep a close eye on their pets and ensure there isn’t any damage. They’ll want to get that deposit back. 

It’s also critical that you understand fair housing laws and you know the difference between a pet and a companion animal. We can help you craft a great pet policy, and we can also talk about how to screen pets before you say yes. 

Contact Property ManagementPlease contact us at Ann Tasias & Associates. We manage investment homes in San Diego, along the I-15 corridor in communities like Mira Mesa, Scripps Ranch, and Poway.