A survey conducted this year by the American Pet Products Association found that 68% of U.S. households have at least one pet. While this percentage has risen over the years, finding a pet-friendly vacation rental can still be a challenge for travelers who want to bring their furry companions along with them on vacation. As a result, owners who make their vacation rentals pet-friendly are able to maximize profits, and keep their properties fully booked.
Allowing pets helps owners attract a larger pool of travelers and expands the renting potential for vacation properties, which translates to nagging vacancies being filled quickly and year-round. Because of the difficulty many travelers face searching for pet-friendly properties, accommodating pets also opens the door to establishing returning renters who vacation in the same location year after year.
In addition to generating more income by filling vacancies year-round, a study conducted by the Foundation for Interdisciplinary Research and Education Promoting Animal Welfare (FIREPAW) found that pet-friendly rentals also have the potential to bring in 20% to 30% more rent than properties that don’t allow pets.
The greater profits are a combination of increased rent due to the greater demand for pet-friendly properties, higher security deposits, additional pet deposits and fees charged to protect owners in the event of a serious issue. FIREPAW’s study stated that most often there was limited to no damage done to a property by a pet, and the increased profits more than made up for any potential risks hosting a pet posed.
Here are some tips to ensure that the monetary benefits of allowing pets at your rental go straight to your bank account and not to fixing rare damages.
1. Get your old baby gates out of the attic and use them to block off areas of your home that you do not want pets to enter. Gates are a great way to set boundaries for visiting pets.
2. Lock up low cabinets where toxic cleaning supplies are, hide or cover loose cords, and move breakable items to higher shelves out of a pet’s reach.
3. Provide cheap, chew toys at your rental to keep pets happy and chewing on something other than furniture.
4. Supply a food and water bowl for pets so that your dishes aren’t mistaken as pet-friendly just because the rental is.
5. Include information about nearby dog parks or walking trails, and provide waste baggies for easy clean up. This keeps your property clean, and your neighbors happy as the pet can release its energy away from the rental.
In addition to taking the above measures to make your rental pet-friendly, always make sure that your rental agreement clearly spells out rules regarding the allowance of pets. Make any rental stipulations clear, and have a signed copy of the agreement by the traveler as a reference for any questions that arise regarding the pet.
Don’t overlook this opportunity to maximize your profits, and improve your travelers’ vacation by making your rental pet-friendly.