I'm a big fan of mitigating risk on my properties and attack breeds only increase it, no question. I've known owners of all breeds of aggressive dogs and they're generally sweet hearts until that one dog, for some unknown reason sets them off and now you're liable.
Control the controllables...and this is an easy no.
I inherited a property with a pit bull and my insurance was cancelled. I was able to get another policy through https://nreig.com/ in which they do not exclude any dog breed, but they do recommend not allowing aggressive breeds or at least require the tenant to have a separate pet policy covering the dog.
Disclosure: I'm biased, I have a pit bull. I'm about to rent my first investment property. I don't discriminate based on breed but I want to evaluate the dog's temperament and references from prior landlords. As I said before, I do have a pit bull that is harmless and I had met a golden retriever that because of over breeding was extremely vicious so breed is not always a good basis for judgement.
Originally posted by @Steve B. :
Dogs, unless they are service dogs, are not a protected class. No one has to write up a process for that. 99% of housing Discrimination is perfectly legal just not against a protected class. It’s amazing how many landlords don’t understand this
I recognize that dog owners are not a protected class (at least not in my state!). My point is that if you don't rent to someone who meets your documented criteria, or if you decline one person with a dog but accept a different one, then you are open to being accused of discriminating on the base of race, sex, etc.
I am an insurance agent and the companies I write for include a list of exclusions for many breeds including pit bulls. As a landlord, I have never allowed any breed of dog from any of the lists just to play it safe. Some pit bulls are well trained, sweet and would not bite anyone. The problem is you don't know if your prospective tenant has one that will end up biting someone or not. I've been through a lawsuit and it was so stressful that I do everything in my power so I don't get sued again. I have learned that tenant screening is so important and part of that is setting rules and sticking to them. Obviously my vote is to decline anyone with a pit bull without exception.
Originally posted by @Anthony Fecarotta :
Any large dog can be aggressive. Insurance/Landlord bans on "aggressive breeds" are asinine.
I understand your sentiment, Anthony. However, insurance companies have banned certain breeds because of historical statistics on bites, maulings, and fatal attacks (similar to actuaries assessing life insurance policy risks). Because these insurance companies have such bans, landlords are practically forced to follow them, to avoid liability.
In any case, let's be honest here: the fact is, large dogs like golden retrievers have earned a reputation GENERALLY as gentle, playful, friendly, family dogs. The same cannot be said of pits. Hence, the banning policies.
We will never ever do a pit or any other aggressive breed dog. It’s just not worth it.
Originally posted by @Cecilia Arnulphi :
Disclosure: "I'm biased..... I do have a pit bull that is harmless...."
As I mentioned earlier in this thread, I've owned German Shepards that were "harmless" and completely loving and friendly around their family and people they knew. And extremely intelligent animals. But I've seen situations where another dog or stranger in the vicinity caused their demeanor to change suddenly to "en guard!" Because of their protective instinct, they become extremely wary in these situations and can pounce without warning. They can be calm and playful one moment, and then a door bell can set them off into "red alert" mode immediately. This behavior is uncharacteristic of golden retrievers.
Bottom line is, our "harmless" dogs may be considered domesticated, but in reality they are still instinctively wild animals and can be UNPREDICTABLE.
When in doubt blame it on someone/something else. When potential tenants ask about certain breeds of dogs I explain to them that my insurance company doesn't allow that breed and apologize.
As far as the existing tenant wait until there current lease is up and tell them you are not going to renew the lease, once again if they complain you can state you are remodeling and find new tenants with a smaller animal or a "less dangerous breed". Hope this helped.
@Gary Floring My pitbull was mauled by two Golden's at a dog park. Any big dog can attack. When I was a kid shepherds were demonized, then Dobermans, then rotts, and now it's pitbulls because of the trash that fight them. Insurance companies have no business telling people what pets are allowed on YOUR property. It's just a ridiculous norm that we've come to accept.
If you are asking, then you already know it’s a bad idea respectfully
What is an example of the clause about excessive noise? i.e continuous barking? Like, what could be a penalty? Or what can protect me and my other tenants in case one unit's mid-lease tenants do not tend to their misbehaving animal?
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