Pet Requirements

13 Replies

Most of my rentals allow pets. I do get pics of all pets, plus info on the breed and age (so no replacing of pets can be done).

Here's my question: Do any of you require up to date shot records? Such as for rabies? 

I've never done this, so was curious if anyone else requires it.

I would say in case one gets sued, for instance, if the tenant's pet bites a neighbor, it will come in handy to show that the landlord had done due diligence and was not in any way negligent. But then again, I don't think too many landlords, including myself,  do it.

My lease states that they are required to comply with all local laws including shots, licensing, etc.  I don't physically check the paperwork myself.  

I second what Bryan said. I also say that the pets should be spayed/neutered. 

@Bryan N.  I will also add the spay/neuter clause to the lease.

Great ideas. Thanks!

Don't forget renters insurance with no exclusions for the pet(s); preferably they can even have a policy where pets are specifically covered. 

Breed restrictions come with the owner's insurance, so even if the tenant has renters insurance that covers a prohibited breed, those are still not allowed. 

As others have mentioned, tenant must comply with all local gov't regulations for the pet(s), including licenses and vet care. They should be able to show that the pet has been to the vet, since the vet gives a receipt for the things required by gov't to serve as proof. 

This might exclude too many potential applicants who otherwise would make promising tenants, but I have a friend who will allow cats but has a blanket policy against not allowing dogs on her property. As she sees it, there are many more potential liabilities with dogs.

But I do know that for cats she has a strict policy on up-to-date vaccinations, spaying/neutering, and a tacit expectation that they are either declawed or their claws regularly trimmed. She also does - as seems to be the case with your rentals - only allow renters to move in with pets. New adoption while on her properties are disallowed as policy.

These might be too strict, but they've generally held up well for her without incident.

I sometimes allow new pets to be adopted. I just get detailed info on the pets they have when they move in so they can't just sneak a new one in without my knowledge.

Michelle Na 

A fellow landlord on BP shared this lease verbiage with me a while ago.  I believe in paying things forward.  Steal what you want from this.  

The Tenant shall abide by all laws of the city of Virginia Beach, Virginia and any local, municipal, or administrative ordinances or regulations with respect to keeping and maintaining live animals, including those governing spaying, neutering, vaccinations, and licensing. The Tenant shall immediately clean up any pet waste or other mess on the Premises, including any common areas. The Tenant shall ensure that each Tenant pet is well behaved and under the Tenant’s control at all times while on the Premises and that no Tenant pet poses a threat or apparent threat to the safety of other occupants of the Premises, their guests or invitees, or other persons on or near the Premises. If, in the absolute and sole opinion of the Landlord, any authorized pet poses such a threat or apparent threat, the Landlord may, at the Landlord’s option, (a) require the Tenant to immediately and permanently remove that pet from the Premises or (b) serve the Tenant with notice to terminate this Lease. The Landlord is not liable for any damages that any such pet may cause to the Premises or any property, or to any injury to a Tenant, or other persons or animals, and the Tenant agrees to indemnify and hold the Landlord harmless from any and all claims or actions resulting from any such damage or injury, including costs of defense and legal fees. No pet other than the pets identified in this section, including any animals owned by any family member, guest or invitee of a Tenant, shall be permitted on the Premises without the prior written approval of the Landlord, which approval may be withheld at the Landlord’s absolute and sole discretion.

Thanks @Bryan N.  . That's really helpful.

No problem 

I would just avoid pets all together.  The smell, additional wear, and damage- most of all the minor being normal wear and tear- is not worth it.  Its similar to smokers, but worse in my opinion.

We have a no pet policy, but do have a few cats who were already in our 8-plex when we bought it, so we allowed them to stay. Also one companion animal, a cat, for a person with a qualified disability. We take a photograph of the tenants holding their animals. This goes into their tenant file, along with a pet/animal agreement that includes the information about the vet, spay/neuter, vaccines, licensing, etc. We also include information about their responsibility for pet nutrition, exercise, and toileting. Also, we make sure the tenant gives us the name and contact information of a responsible person who has agreed to care for the animal if the tenant is on vacation or incapacitated in some way.

Thank you for sharing the exact lease verbiage!!

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