April 10, 2019

Pet Friendly Vacation Rentals?

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Pet Friendly Vacation Rentals

Do you allow pets in your vacation rentals? We’re adding two new units that are both pet friendly this month, but there are a lot of pros and cons to allowing animals into your rentals.

In Mammoth, generally, only condos are eligible to rent on a short term basis, so the first thing we have to consider with regards to animals is homeowner’s association restrictions (HOA). We manage a few units in HOAs that don’t allow any renters to have guests, but only the owners of the unit. Obviously if the HOA doesn’t allow it, that makes the discussion very short! We don’t want to deal with fines or other issues from the association, or our guests being harassed by management there.

If the association permits though, we love to allow our rentals to be pet friendly. We, of course, let the owner decide for themselves, but we have found that pet friendly units far and away produce more gross income than non-pet friendly units. Think: last summer, we had a pet friendly one bedroom that was grossing more than a 2+loft condo. It seems people really love to bring Fido with them on their vacations to the mountains! And what pup doesn’t want to frolic in the snow or swim in the lakes?

But what about damage?

We have had some minor damage due to pets in our units before. When we started allowing pets, I purchased a carpet shampooer that takes care of 90% of any issues. It’s definitely no fun when an animal relieves itself inside, but it’s generally not hard to take care of with the proper tools. The only other damage that we’ve experienced to this point is some scratch marks on the doors. This has also been easy to take care of with a bit of sand paper and some touch up paint or stain. To be entirely honest, we’ve had much worse damage come from guests with small children than guests with pets. So far, we’ve had a great luck with contacting airbnb guests whose pets have caused damage and having them pay for the extra work or clean time without any issues.

If you or your owners (and your cleaners!) are prepared to handle the minor inconveniences of allowing pets in exchange for the major payout, here are some tips we’ve found invaluable:

    • Θ Make sure to be explicit in instructions to guests about cleaning up after their pets. Let them know where they can find dog bags and where the closest dumpster is.
    • Θ Provide carpet cleaner (if there is carpet in the unit) that’s designed for pet messes that the guest can easily find.
    • Θ Provide a lint roller! We keep multiple lint rollers in each pet friendly unit. One for guest use and another for our cleaners. If guests see a lint roller they are more like to help keep furniture clean of pet hair., saving your cleaner time.
    • Θ Lastly, make sure to pay your cleaners more to clean a pet friendly unit than a similar sized one that doesn’t allow pets. If they need to spot clean the carpet, lint roll the furniture, and vacuum more carefully, they need to be compensated for their extra time. Make sure to have a system in place for the cleaners to notify you of any damage or messes so that it can be handled immediately.

I’d love to hear about your experiences with pet friendly units, or why you chose not to allow pets.

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