Property Management Blog

Why You’d Be Crazy to NOT Allow Pets in Your Building

System - Wednesday, April 5, 2017

Barks, odors, paw prints…all the sights and sounds that come with owning a pet don’t paint too pretty a picture.

These are why property owners are loath to accept pets in their buildings. But what if doing so actually made sense?

Pet policies aren’t for everyone, but for certain properties they can be perfect: perhaps you are planning on replacing the carpets soon, or maybe pet deposits and monthly upcharges can help with cash flow issues you may be experiencing. Here are some other things to think about:

Consider where you are

Washington has one of the highest percentages of pet ownership in the United States. An astonishing 72% of renters have pets. That number is also increasing amongst younger renters.

If you are in an area with high pet ownership rates, you have major opportunities for generating more revenue. 

You are offering something that most other buildings aren’t, and will attract many more tenants. This can be especially important if you own a building that’s been hard to fill, like one that’s in a dangerous area.

This is a great way to ensure long-term renters

Considering the scarcity of pet-friendly apartments, as well as reluctance to change their pet’s environment, owners are much more likely to stay with a reliable property. Firepaw Inc. ran a study that found apartment renters with pets average twice the length of stay as opposed to those without pets.

Perform strict screenings upon meeting

It’s the same reason you screen tenants - you can see early on if the pet will be a problem for your building. You can ask for shot records, how long they’ve had the pet, any past instances; if you are really concerned, you can even call the pet’s veterinarian or even past landlords.

You can also pay attention to how the pet and owner interact. You can see if the owner is neglectful, or even abusive. You’ll also get a good feel for the dog’s personality - is it loving? Is it quiet? If the dog is overly aggressive, or even overprotective of its owner, you’ll have immediate indicators of potential issues down the road.

You don’t have much to lose

You may be thinking, “You make money with deposits and monthly charges, but you lose it all with potential damages.” In some cases, that may be true. Yet many property owners have reported never having seen damages from pets.


What do you think? Like we said, it may not make sense for all property owners to allow pets. We can help you decide if it’s right for you, as well as suggesting best practices for implementing a pet-policy.

If you have any questions, shoot them our way.