A big question for landlords in southeastern North Carolina is: should I allow pets? At Sweyer Property Management, we think the answer to that question is always yes. If you look at the statistics, 70 percent of the U.S. population has a dog or a cat. That’s a significant consideration for a property owner and the pool of potential tenants to whom they are going to market their property. When you decide to allow pets into your rental home, it’s important to evaluate your pet policy.
Requirements and Pet Limitations
Educate yourself on the pet requirements relative to where your property is located. If you’re in an HOA, there might be restrictions, and the same goes for condominiums and townhomes. Look at your association documents for any limitations that tenants might have when moving in with pets.
You will need to know if your tenant has a restricted breed. We recommend you consider the actual pure breed as well as any cross breeds or mixes. The list of dangerous breeds includes Akitas, Pit Bulls or Staffordshire terriers, Rottweilers, Dobermans, Chows, German Shepherds, all Husky breeds, Great Danes, St. Bernards, Malamutes and Bull Mastiffs. A good pet policy will avoid allowing these types of dogs. It’s a sensitive subject, especially to people who own these dogs and don’t consider them dangerous. Everyone has great pets that are well behaved but the more aggressive breeds can cause problems in communities and it becomes risky when they’re exposed to neighbors. Avoid that risk and deselect those breeds from consideration.
Finally, take steps to document the pet. Makes sure you know and identify the animal in your property. Document the pet’s breed, take pictures of it and collect the name and age so you have good background information on the tenant’s dog or cat before they move in.
We always encourage landlords to allow pets, as long as you are aware of the limitations associated with that policy. If you have any questions, or you need help establishing a pet policy for your investment properties, please contact us at Sweyer Property Management, and we’d be happy to help you.