September 09, 2013
Recent research* by Mortgage Choice reveals that only 24% of first time property investors who plan to buy in the next two years will allow tenants with pets to live in their investment property. With an estimated 2.16 million** renting households, for those with pets this could mean investment properties that are accepting of pets are likely to be a sought-after rental choice.
Of the 1,019 respondents to the 2013 First Time Property Investors Survey, those who come from South Australia are most likely to allow pets in their rental properties (at 25% of respondents from this state). First-time property investors from Victoria were a close second when it came to being pet-friendly (24%), followed by New South Wales (23%), Queensland (23%) and Western Australia (22%).
Obviously for those who have pets, there can be an additional hurdle to jump through when finding a suitable property to rent so being able to identify properties that will accept pets will be high on their list.
On the flipside, property owners who are happy to rent to people with furry friends could open themselves up to a much wider rental market, so they should think about making their pet-friendly property status very clear to applicants.
Interestingly, of those respondents who will allow pets, 15% were looking to purchase a small apartment as their first investment property. Renters should be mindful that while a landlord may be accepting of pets, whether or not they are allowed in a property will ultimately depend on how the property is managed as, for example, a strata group could rule that pets are not allowed to live in a property.
For Mortgage Choice customer and first time property investor, Fabio De Castro, the decision to allow pets in his investment property was an easy one to make, however he acknowledges that each investor’s preference is different.
”I myself am a pet owner so I understand the connection that someone can form with an animal and how difficult it can often be to find a place to rent that will allow pets,” said Mr De Castro.
“Given that not many landlords offer pet-friendly properties, I have the advantage of reaching a broader demographic of tenants, which is especially important in the family orientated neighbourhood that my investment property is located.
“By allowing pets, my property is more likely to attract longer-term tenants as the property will feel more ‘homely’ where a pet is permitted. I also find pet owners are often very reliable as they are used to the responsibility of looking after their pet and this trait bodes well for the landlord.”
As there is no ‘one size fits all’ investment profile, first-time investors are encouraged to do their research and to enlist professional help in order to develop their specific investment property strategy. An accountant or financial adviser can assist you with the tax and legal ramifications of purchasing an investment property, while a mortgage broker can help you find the most suitable loan for your investment strategy.
Once you have the right investment strategy to suit your particular needs, you can then spend time thinking about the needs and wants of your potential tenants, which may influence your ultimate purchase decision and ongoing rental preferences.
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*Market research company Nine Rewards was commissioned by Mortgage Choice to conduct the 2013 First Time Property Investors Survey. The online Survey was conducted in late July 2013 and completed by 1,019 Australians who were planning to purchase their first investment property in the next two years. Note, the figures in the media release commentary have been rounded to the nearest whole percentage point.
** Data from the Australian Bureau of Statistics 4130.0 - Housing Occupancy and Costs, 2011-12 – released on Wednesday 28 August 2013