pet rent or pet deposit in Arkansas?

18 Replies

hey everybody,

I have had the same tenet for one year with a new lease coming up May 1st. He is thinking about getting a puppy for his family.  Which is better a one time pet deposit or add on to the monthly rent for a pet?


I personally charge a one time pet fee. deposits are refundable.

Pet fee of $350 and $35 a month.  Small dog only and they MUST HAVE RENTERS INSURANCE... 

I only own one property but I have both. A $300 non-refundable deposit, and $30/mo extra for the cat.

I currently charge 150 per pet deposit, non refundable , been considering a monthly charge.  I do suggest renters insurance, but have not required it.  no vicious breeds, limit of two . 

As a pet owner, I would often pass on a place when they made me pay non-refundable fees, particularly with a pet rent on top of it. And of course, I was a fantastic renter, so I wouldn't want to scare off the good ones. That's why I personally just charge a refundable pet deposit. I charge per pet, and I charge based on size. With a puppy as opposed to an adult dog, however, you can basically guarantee there's going to be damage, so I would consider that in whatever you're going to decide. 

Originally posted by @Diane Stinebaugh :

thank @John Underwood and @Bob B.   @Bob B., I have a you require renters insurance for all or just dog owners?  thanks

 My lease says they need to have renters insurance to cover their personal property. I have landlord Insurance to cover the building. If they don't get insurance and say a leak damages something of theirs I can point to the lease. I don't enforce this. I only enforce insurance on an owner financed property and I make sure I am listed as a loss payee. This also let's me know if their insurance lapses.

A pet deposit will very rarely cover the cost of pet damage if there is any. The nice thing about pet lovers is that they are willing to pay for the luxury of having a pet.

My recommendation, if you are serious about protecting your investment, is to charge a higher monthly rent.$30 - $40 more per month. Your tenants pup is going to do damage, there is little doubt that pups are a bad decision on the part of landlords.

If he wants a pup make him pay. Charge a high enough additional rent and he may decide not to have a

Most places of quality that I've seen charge both. And it's never a deposit, but a pet fee. You will most likely need this for odorizing the floors at bare minimum.

One thing to keep in mind, is that a puppy will definitely tear up the floors and possible walls. Puppies don't have any training and even with an extremely attentive owner, something WILL get destroyed. (I've been there myself :D)

@Diane Stinebaugh as others suggested charge both a non-refundable pet fee and monthly pet rent. Pets destroy carpet. When they pee it soaks into the pad and sub-floor. Carpet cleaning only cleans the surface, so you are left with pee smell down in the pad and sub-floor. Puppies are the WORST because they have lots of accidents during potty training. Good luck.

$350 pet fee (not deposit), and $25 per month pet rent.

It really doesn't matter how good the tenant is, the pet is dirty and creates damage, whether it is the dark spot on the wall where it loves to lay, the wear in the carpet where it paces back and forth to the door and back to it's spot, broken blinds where it pokes its nose through to look for people, water drips on the flooring where it eats and drinks from its bowl, the landscaping (digging, wearing run patterns, poop ,etc) etc, etc.  You get the idea.  

These things can seem small, and go unnoticed or not considered, but they DO play into the condition of your property, which is the only thing YOU should be concerned about.

They are worth collecting a fee upfront as well as a continued fee each month.

Don't feel bad about charging it, and don't be swayed by people who tell you that their pets are angels.  Unless their "angels" wear shoes when they go outside and take them off when they come back in, they are making messes in your property.

@Diane Stinebaugh ,

Both-- without a doubt-- BOTH!   Make sure you call it a **Pet Fee, or Nonrefundable Pet Deposit**   

Pets add a lot of wear and tear!  I first didn't' want to charge a pet deposit, because I thought everyone was like me and really took care of their homes and really  thought about the dogs as far as taking them out/walking them/crating them.. nope...

If at the end of the lease, 0 damage is done.. no one will complain if you want to give it back, but I guarantee you'll hate yourself for not charging one when you do see the damage and then you have to prove it and take $$$ from the  security deposit!   Blinds will be destroyed... pee will be on flooring, trim will be chewed, doors will be scratched up... walls will be scratched up..   it all comes with the territory, that's why landlords charge the pet rent/deposit!

I would allow a dog whom is spayed or neutered but not a new puppy. A new puppy will destroy a property. I would not renew the lease if they insist on a puppy.

I do both a pet fee each month and a deposit. For insurance, we require all tenants now to have it and make sure they name us on the policy 

I’m both a landlord, and pet owner, & I find it unethical to charge a “pet rent”. You wouldn’t charge a tenants extra rent if they decided to have a child, so why is having a pet any different. I have my tenants to pay a pet deposit to cover potential damages, & require renters insurance.

I'm in the camp that enforces the pet fee and monthly rent charge. I've found that if you don't enforce a pet fee or monthly rent and allow a dog or cat, you end up with several dogs or cats. 

The pet fee really just helps hedge against damages caused by pets. In the case of @Diane Stinebaugh 's renter, a tenant moving in a puppy, you will likely need to plan for baseboard repair/replacement and interior door repairs/replacements caused by chewing and scratching by untrained/young pets. Depending on your floors, you will likely need to replace or deep clean (carpet) these when the tenant moves out if you don't already do this. 

We like vinyl plank or tile for properties that we allow pets in since they don't wear as easily as carpet and hardwoods.

Good luck to you!


wow!  you all give me a lot to think about! thanks!

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