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Dave Ramsey: Pets and rental properties aren't a great mix

The problem is I really do have a heart for animals. I love them. But as a landlord who’s running a business, it just doesn’t make sense.
Dave Ramsey, Deseret News Modified: August 29, 2014 at 7:36 pm •  Published: September 2, 2014
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Dear Dave,

I have several rental properties, and lately I’ve been spending a ton of money remodeling them because I allow pets. Do you think I should begin refusing tenants with pets?

— Jim

Dear Jim,

This is a tough one for me because I have three dogs of my own. I’ve got a pug that’s older than dirt, a Shih Tzu with an attitude and the best golden retriever on the planet. I love animals, and like you, I’ve got a lot of rental properties. But I don’t allow animals in my properties.

Some people have accused me of hating all animals except my own. I can tell you that’s not true. But the fact is a lot of people don’t take good care of their animals and keep an eye on them. It’s hard enough to find trustworthy, responsible renters these days, and if you add a dog or cat on top of that, you’re just asking for trouble. I’ve had situations in the past where I had to spend $10,000 to clean up a house after a tenant had a dog or cat in there. They’ll chew things up, stain and stink things up and tear things up. Sometimes you even have to replace the floorboards.

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