The following is article I found about having pets in rental properties.
Note – PFR: stands for Pet Friendly Rentals.
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PFR: Hi Dennis, thank you for talking to Pet Friendly Rentals today. Could you tell us a bit about yourself and your experience in the Real Estate industry?
Hi Ryan. Firstly, let me say that I am very interested in the rental industry and I believe we are seen as one of the most professional property management Offices in our area. Secondly, the situation regarding pets is of real concern to us. I have been involved in the real estate industry for over 30 years – 25 of those years with Raine & Horne and being a property investor myself I see both sides of the story on issues such as renting with pets.
PFR: So you’ve been in the industry a long time… What are your thoughts on why for a country where 63% of households own a pet, there are (relatively speaking) so few rentals that allow them?
That’s easy, there are pets and there are pets – there are 2 very distinct categories. To be on the safe side property owners say “no pets” when they are listing their rental properties, but in actual fact most of them don’t mind having pets live there but they are reluctant to actually promote “pets” in case they have a bad experience.
PFR: How responsible have pet owners been in your experience? Is it a case of the minority making it difficult for the majority?
We have had very little trouble with pets because we are very selective in the first place, just as we are selective with the potential tenants.
PFR: We’ve noticed that on Real Estate.com.au for example, many properties do not say anything about allowing or disallowing pets. This makes it frustrating for pet owners who often ring up to enquire about such properties. Why do you think ‘pets ok’ or ‘no pets’ are often not specified?
I personally would not promote pets for any of the properties I own and rent out, but all them actually have pets in them (except where the Body Corporate doesn’t allow them). I think people feel that they might be promoting the wrong type of pets. I believe it’s a tragedy to see a working dog for example kept in a small yard with no exercise.
PFR: What are some of the key things a Property Manager or Landlord looks for when selecting the ideal tenant?
A good past good record as well as the ability to pay rent, and if they have good references regarding pets, there are very few owners that would reject their applications.
PFR: What could pet owners do to maximise their chances of being approved for a rental?
Reference, reference, reference!
PFR: I understand that a lot of investors see pets as a liability to their investment property but what is the majority of damage to rentals actually caused by?
The only pet-related damage we have ever had reported was from locked-up working dogs. Other damage is typically caused by the people, not the pets.
PFR: Due to supply and demand, it’s likely that in some cases, investors could get a greater weekly income for their property if they allowed pets? Do you think this could influence their decision?
Absolutely – Most landlords would take a risk for a few dollars more on their return.
Do you think changes in legislation that would enable a “Pet Bond” to be introduced would help make more properties pet friendly, as a way of helping investors feel like they had more protection against any damage caused?
The current bond of 4 weeks rent is adequate, but if I was a prospective tenant and I was willing to pay more if it helped me to obtain the property that I wanted, then yes I believe investors would be very interested.
PFR: What else do you think could be done to help improve the number of rentals that allow pets?
If agents could specify the type of pets allowed or not allowed.
PFR: Any further comments?
Unit complexes are the worst offenders so developers should provide for pets in their planning of units – if they did, I believe that their units would sell for a premium. Investors would also get a higher rental return in these ‘pet friendly designed’ units. So getting the message through that designing for pets and allowing pets can achieve both a higher rental return and sale price would I believe assist.
PFR: Thanks very much for joining us today Dennis.