Can you guess how many pets there are in Australia?
Well, there are actually more pets than people!
According to the RSPCA, there are more 25 million pets in our country.
But here's the thing: it's estimated that more than half of rental properties have a no pets policy.
So what do these statistics mean?
They mean opportunity if you ask me!
Pets in the city
There are about 2.3 million rental properties in Australia, only half of which allow pets to live with their owners.
Sure, there are probably plenty of people who "hide" their pets from landlords.
But can you blame them when potentially only half of the rental stock says yes to pets in the city?
The lesson from all of this is that landlords should consider allowing furry friends if they want reliable and grateful tenants – and potentially more money.
That’s because if you allow pets you’re opening the door to a wider range of potential tenants which means you’re likely to achieve a higher rent as well as tenants who stay for longer.
Pet pros and cons
Some investors are hesitant to accept pets, thinking that their rental properties are too small or they're worried about the potential damage.
If you have a property with a beautiful garden that you don’t want destroyed, you probably don’t want tenants with large dogs, but a low-maintenance garden or a paved courtyard could be ideal for somebody who has pets.
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That said, a beautiful garden in a rental property is always going to be difficult to maintain – without or without pets – unless you also pay for a gardener.
While owners are not allowed to request an extra pet bond to cover potential damage (other than in Western Australia), many manage to charge higher rents to help offset the risk.
And a good property manager will insert a “pet clause” in your lease to protect your interests and ensure that any damage done will be rectified at the end of the lease.
It could also be an idea to consider including pet damage coverage in your landlord insurance policy to further reduce the risk.
Here's the thing....
The number of renters in Australia is growing.
The reasons are many and varied and includes a growing number of international migrants who opt to rent rather than buy as may be the norm in their home countries.
More and more young people are renting for longer as they enjoy life before settling down – if they choose to ever do that or not.
So, with more renters, there are going to be more opportunities for landlords to approve pets in their rental properties.
Not only will that make your tenant happier, they likely to stay for longer and treat your property as their and their furry friend's home.
And when it comes to successful property investment, all landlords want a tenant who does that, don't we?
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