Owning rental properties in Pittsburgh, PA, means sometimes assessing your investments and asking pertinent questions to maximize ROI. Aside from asking "how much can I rent my house for," another pressing question you may have is, "should I allow pets?" You may have debated this idea before, wondering what the best answer is for your bottom line or when dealing with potential maintenance requests from pet damage in a rental unit. We're here to help! The best property management Pittsburgh offers has the answers on this important topic and how it can affect your ROI.
Why You Should Allow Pets in Your Rental Property
Allowing pets in your rental property has several benefits! For one thing, Americans love their pets. A significant portion of the population owns at least one pet. So, if you decide to accept pets in your rentals, you open the doors to a much wider tenant pool. People who were once not considered prospective tenants due to owning a pet are now potential renters.
Another positive aspect of having pet owners in your rentals is that the tenants are more likely to stay in the home longer. Property managers will tell you that it can be difficult to find good rental homes that allow animals in Pittsburgh. However, once residents get settled in with their beloved furry friend, they won't want to start the process all over again looking for another place that accepts pets.
You also open the doors to increased ROI. By increasing the rent amount, property owners can improve returns when offering pet-friendly rentals. In addition, when keeping residents for more than one lease term, your ROI will be higher due to the lack of vacancies. Your turnover rate could be drastically lower when you have more tenant options with pet-friendly rental units!
Maximize ROI With These Tips
Now, if you're convinced that accepting tenants and their pets are the way to go, investment property owners must still maximize ROI while doing so. By putting a few protocols in place, you can minimize hassles or losses that can occur with animals in a rental home. A rental manager recommends a few things you can do to ensure that things go smoothly.
Charge a Pet Rent for Greater ROI
Most pet owners will be happy to pay rent that's a little higher than your usual rate to have a place where their pet is welcome. However, you won't want to overdo it on a higher amount to compensate for pets, or you might lose a few tenants. If you are already charging a premium price for rent or an added fee for a resident benefits package, you could forego this option.
Don't Forget the Pet Security Deposit
A pet security deposit is different from pet rent. If you add it, you'll need to include it in the lease. This security deposit would cover any damages that could occur if something happens involving the pet. The pet security deposit can be included separately, or you can make the initial security deposit larger and have it cover everything. Whatever you decide, make sure your property manager assists you with creating the addendum to the lease and following the law regarding deposits.
Create a Pet Policy
Before allowing pets while leasing properties, it's critical to set pet policies in the lease agreement. This can consist of criteria that focus on allowed pet weight or breeds and the number of pets that are permitted in a rental unit. While it's important not to use a pet policy to discriminate against potential tenants, some dog breeds can affect your landlord insurance rates.
Real estate investors can also require that owners keep their pets up to date on shots. You may have to do an annual check-up to make sure they are abiding by this policy. Still, it's important not to allow unhealthy animals into your properties or risk a dangerous situation for other residents or neighbors with an unvaccinated pet.
Along with this, be sure you find out about the pet's history from the owner. If you're dealing with a larger breed or have decided to accept all breeds, you may want to ask questions about past behavior. Ensure that the animal has never acted aggressively and won't put anyone at risk while living in your rental unit. Work with a property management company to put a rule in place that if the dog has any history of biting, it can't be a resident of your property.
Work With a Pittsburgh Property Management Company to Manage Pets for Better ROIs
Take the next steps to prepare for your new pet tenants by getting help from the best property management Pittsburgh offers! While pets and pet owners can improve ROIs, property owners should work with a professional team to create a pet addendum, screen pets, and enforce the rules.
Rentwell is here to help real estate investors maximize returns! If you're considering pet-friendly properties, reach out to learn how we can help with professional Pittsburgh property management services.
You can also learn how to boost returns when you download our free Guide, "10 Things You Should Do To Increase the ROI for Your Investment Property."