Duplex under contact but pitbulls next door. Should I be worried

102 Replies

@Matt M. I drove around the property and neighbor hood for about a month. I would go at night and in the afternoon.

I even spoke to neighbors which is a standard practice of mines before buying any property.

I didn't see anything that scared me away until I actually went to do the inspection and pulled up in the driveway 😑.

Originally posted by @Jay Hinrichs :
Originally posted by @Mitchlyn D.:

@Jay Hinrichs Yeah, but the numbers work so damn well. But peace of mind is more.

I didn't get into real estate to create a 2nd job. I'm afraid this property will become that!

they only work well on paper.. you wont know how it works until you have owned it for a few years and dealt with the dog problem what if rents are lower .. what it it takes 2 months to rent  what If tenants keep moving because of the dogs.. then what ever you pencil now is irrelevant.  

Jay knows what he is talking about here.  It does well on paper because you are calculating rents based off of factors outside of this neighbor.  I would probably walk unless there was a way to clear up the issue before closing.  

If the house a block away is class C, it does not imply that the house next door to the Pitbull house is class C.  I would say the same for a house next door to the Sanford and Sons house (a junked or hoarder house).

Here is a way to look at it.  The house a block away is for rent at the same rent as the Pitbull house.  Which house do you think the majority of tenants will chose all other things being equal?  This likely means that you will need to reduce the rent to fill the unit.  The reduced rent will result in a greater potential for a higher risk tenant.

So the question are: how would this RE pencil out as a class D rental with class D rents?  Are you interested in dealing with class D tenants?  Do you have experience with class D tenants? 

I have no interest in owning/managing class D rentals.  So I would pass.  There are LLs that specialize in managing lower class RE that would definitely purchase if the financials were positive.

Good luck

@Mitchlyn D. As a responsible pitbull owner of 4 plus a chihuahua, dont assume these dogs are inherently dangerous from all the people who simply hate these dogs or are just afraid of dogs or have just fed into the media hype.

First, find out what the city or county ordinances are for number of dogs a person can own. Some municipalities state a specific number of dogs, some just say a "reasonable" amount -- meaning if they are able to care for them (e.g. they are not starving or critically I'll, have shelter from the elements, etc). Also, in most states, to sell dogs, you are limited to one litter per year, per dog, or you are required to have a license to breed. Also, they might just not have money to spay their dogs so the females keep getting pregnant. There are free spay/neuter clinics if you look to suggest for the owners. Try local humane society for free or low cost spay/neuter clinics.

Also, note that theres a severe lack of housing options for ppl who have pitbulls so chances are if you get the owner in trouble, they may have to surrender dogs to animal control which is a death sentence. Why not try talking to them first to see what the situation is?

@Mitchlyn D. I’d cancel. In addition to being harder to rent out/ less rent/less desirable tenant, you’d have constant potential for broken leases due to noise/safety & legal issues. Sounds a mess.

Check on who is the owner.  Seriously, offer to buy his property, too, and then evict the pitbull-owning tenant.  Do NOT buy the dogs - they'll just get more.  Most towns have laws about how many animals you can have - report them.  Dogs are probably all unregistered, unimmunized, never been to a vet.

Or walk away.  You won't be held liable, but your tenants' children could easily be mauled.  And the pitbull breeder could be doing something unsavory in there, like dealing, which might be why they have the dogs in the first place.

@Mitchlyn D. when I was looking at houses to live in, I found a gorgeous house in the perfect neighborhood at an incredible price. Of course I had my agent show it to me, and as we walked up to the front door the neighbor's dogs started barking at us so loudly and viciously, I was terrified that they would come through the fence and attack.

We got the door open and viewed the inside - perfect of course. But I didn't make an offer specifically because of those dogs next door and made sure my agent told the listing agent precisely why we didn't make an offer.

They weren't even pit bulls! They were just regular dogs that were very loud, kind of big, and frightening.

I imagine most of your potential tenants will react similarly to me. Doesn't matter if those dogs next door are nice or not. Tenants don't want to take the chance, so they just find another house without 'dangerous breed' dogs next door.

@Latasha Griffin Sorry but the pit bull issue isn’t ‘media hype’. Of course there are responsible owners and pit bulls that are well-mannered. But there is a reason they are considered a dangerous breed, restricted or banned in some areas and can cause problems with getting insurance. It ain’t made up!

That said, I would never buy a place that comes with an inherent issue that I cannot directly control. Walk away.

@Mitchlyn D.

One of the houses I just sold last month in Las Vegas, my neighbor have two very aggressive big dogs. The two big dogs always try to jump over the fence and attack me or my handyman. Not only I scare of the two dogs, My 200 lbs big strong handyman scare the dogs too because they are too aggressive. We are afraid to go out to our backyard. We are unable to do yard job unless we peek through the windows and make sure the neighbor dogs are not in their yard.

I know it will create problems for my future tenants if I keep the house. I know tenants will move out often because of the two aggressive dogs.

I called the animal control, and complained to the HOA. I think the neighbor kind of knew that I called the animal control.

After I called the animal control, I didn't see the dogs anymore.  Either the dogs are taken away by the animal controls, or the dogs happened to be inside the neighbor house when I visited the property. 

When the house was vacant while it was listed on MLS for sale, I visited the property from time to time, I found a lot of trash several times in my backyard. I suspect the trash came from my neighbor because they are mad that I called animal control about their dogs.

I didn’t say anything, pretend nothing happen, just picked up the trash myself, pray and hope that the house would be sold ASAP.

I’m very happy that the house was sold and closed escrow last month.

@Mark S. Do you own pitbulls? I'd venture to guess, no. Only people who dont own them have these strong, negative opinions of them. All dogs have the propensity to bite. If it was 5 German shepherds would you feel the same? Because they are responsible for more serious dog bites than "pitbulls" but those stories dont get sensationalized in the media.

I plan to prioritize my units to rent to pitbull owners because they will pay a premium for the security of being able to have their dogs on the lease. I run a page on facebook of hundreds of local pitbull owners who are in need of housing for their families. This is an underserved market that I intend to cater to. I also plan to over-engineer my units to be dog resistant (washable walls, tile or laminate flooring throughout, dog friendly fenced in backyards if possible, etc). I'll also require a non-refundable pet deposit, all dogs be spayed/neutered, up to date on vaccines at time of lease execution, and renter's insurance that includes pet liability coverage. State Farm offers it regardless of breed.

@Ola Dantis I said the same thing about the property and numbers until I pulled up and open my car door to be greeted by 4 pits steering me in my face behind the fence. Lol.

Originally posted by @Latasha Griffin :

@Mark S. Do you own pitbulls? I'd venture to guess, no. Only people who dont own them have these strong, negative opinions of them. All dogs have the propensity to bite. If it was 5 German shepherds would you feel the same? Because they are responsible for more serious dog bites than "pitbulls" but those stories dont get sensationalized in the media.

Latasha, I can appreciate your passion for this subject, but this discussion is about continuing to pursue a property with a known issue. You said yourself that "...only people who don't own them have these strong, negative opinions..."

This is PRECISELY who will be applying to live in the home - people who don't own them. The fact that they live next door and this was discovered BEFORE he closed on the property is actually good for him, because he can choose to walk away from an issue that will affect his ability to rent the property.

I'm not saying this is fair to the animals. I'm stating a fact that many potential tenants will be turned off by the neighbor dogs. He should keep this information in mind when he is making his investing choices.

It's all fun and games until that sweet pitbull next door is turning your leg/arm/face into hamburger.  All the local laws go out the window.  Those are for law abiding people.  When was the last time you heard about a law abiding pitbull??

@Mindy Jensen Agreed. And I wanted to present him with a perspective he hadn't heard on this thread yet, so I did. Of course, he can do what he wishes with all this info. So may landlords are quick to restrict dogs from their properties, but they cut off a good chunk of the market that way. Just wanted him to know other ways he could assess the situation.

@Latasha Griffin I don't think the issue was mainly the breed. But the home owners where the pitbulls exist does not have the correct equipment (high enough fence) or display a responsible outdoor attire to restrain that many number of pitbulls.

As a child raised with Pitbulls, I personally love them. But not in this instance where I have limited control.