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Pets may be Negatively Impacting Your Rental Unit in a Surprising Way

10 December 2013

It’s pretty common for landlords to disallow their tenants to have pets in their unit with them. They can be messy, cause problems for those who live in the unit next if they are allergic, and can also cause damage to the unit. But while competition is so high for rental units, can landlords afford to put up those “no pet” signs any longer?

“Yes, there are some buyers that will not take a unit that was pre-lived by pet owners due to severe allergies, for example,” says mortgage broker Paolo Di Petta. “But overall, I do not think that it will impact significantly in terms of re-sale value, as long as the unit is in good condition.”

And in fact, not only do most buyers and tenants not mind if a unit has been pre-lived in by a pet owner, putting up that “no pets” sign can actually drive away potential renters from your unit.

That’s according to a new report, that focused on the U.S. investor market but is just as applicable on this side of the border. That report showed that rental units that can be occupied by a pet were likely to increase in value, while those that restrict pets are likely to decrease. That isn’t so surprising when you take into consideration that over half of the population has a pet of some sort.

And not allowing pets to live in a building or rental unit can actually pose bigger problems for the landlord than even damage to the unit. In some cases landlords have been sued for not allowing pets in, especially when it’s a case of a guide dog living with its owner.

“Landlords only really face problems when adjacent units have unruly or loud animals,” says Di Petta. “That is the main problem that we are seeing more of.”

Some management companies and landlords have tried to restrict the amount of damage done to any particular unit by allowing pets, but putting restrictions on those pets, such as requiring they be 30 pounds or less.

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