Many landlords do not want to allow pets in their rental properties, but with the right pet policy advice, Portland, OR property owners can ensure their investment is protected while they allow qualified tenants to move in with animals.
Allowing pets is a good idea, because many of the best tenants have them. In Portland, over half of the prospective tenants on the market have at least one pet. If you plan to prohibit pets in your property, you’re going to face a longer vacancy. It will take you extra time to find someone who is well qualified and willing to rent your home. Establishing a pet policy will ensure your tenants are responsible with your property when they have dogs or cats living with them.
You’ll need to talk to your insurance carrier about the restricted dog breeds on your policy. Dogs that are considered aggressive will not be covered. That means you won’t want to rent to tenants who have Pit bulls, Dobermans and other specific breeds. Review your policy so you know which dogs are acceptable, and don’t allow a breed you aren’t sure about until you’ve confirmed that it’s permitted by your insurance company.
Many landlords choose to place restrictions on the size of the animals they’ll allow in their properties. This is a great way to accept pets while still protecting your property. You can allow small cats only, or dogs that weight less than 20 pounds. Any restrictions that you want to impose on pets should be clearly outlined in your lease. Include any rules, regulations and requirements on the number of pets your tenant is permitted and what size you’ll consider.
Always collect an additional deposit when you have pets moving into your rental home. As a landlord, you can ask for a larger security deposit, or you can increase the monthly rent to cover the damages that a pet many cause. Most deposits are between $500 and $1,000, and you can decide whether it’s a refundable deposit or a non-refundable fee.
A good pet policy will protect your home while allowing you access to a wider pool of prospective renters. Make sure your lease addresses what types of animals you will allow, how large they can be and what kind of additional fees or deposits will be charged.
Contact Jim McNeeley Real Estate and Property Management if you have any questions about how to put together a solid pet policy.