What they found showed a…, The new year is fast approaching. People love their pets, but as a property manager or homeowner, make sure you love your units by protecting them with airtight leases. Dog odors, cat urine, hamster litter, parakeet droppings, and so much more can all cause foul odors. Some of this pays for an apartment cleaning to freshen up the place. You can keep your apartment free of unwanted pet hair by vacuuming frequently. Use the old piece as a template when cutting the new piece of carpeting. Recommend policies that specifically cover damage to the apartment to ensure they actually cover you. Apparently, for months, she had let the cats do their business wherever they wanted—on windowsills, on the carpeting, on the bathroom floor, and even on some furniture that came with the unit. The last thing any Cat parent want is their Cat to start urinating everywhere and pooping on their expensive rug or carpet! Enter the concept of fair market value. It can also make units challenging to rent. 3 Center Plaza, Suite 400 First, Mary preserved her options by carefully documenting the damage done by the combination of the cats and the neglect. About 3 years ago we lived in an apartment for a good 5 or so years. Pet odors can be overwhelming despite being invisible. office? Global Headquarters The catch is that the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development has interpreted the term “service animals” very broadly, compared to what most people familiar with the Americans with Disabilities Act think of. Sure, an accountant might try to console you by telling you you’re only out the fair market value of the carpets and other fabrics. You can say you only allow “service animals,” of course. If you own cats, you already know about their habits. However, some pet insurance just covers the health of a pet or medical bills caused by a dog bite. If the carpet was five years old when the tenant moved in, and the tenant mounts a defense against you, withholding a security deposit or filing a lawsuit for additional damages, you as a landlord may have some challenges. Cleaning up pet messes and dealing with odors can damage your property value. My cat has torn the carpet in the doorways. Long-haired cats and dogs are adorable! Additionally, a lot of fresh air, ventilation, and sunlight will help. It’s important to stay proactive about preventing odors and other pet-related damage from the start. The reason? Ready to dive in and start cleaning? You can hope for the best for tenants to pay up when pets damage an apartment. There’s only one smelly place in all of your apartment space. When I first moved in to my apartment I had a female cat (yes she was spayed) she decided to pee in a closet (no not my bedroom closet) it’s just a storage closet but anyways I guess I didn’t notice it in time and I’m sure it has soaked to the carpet padding underneath and I have tried literally everything and the smell still lingers. But don’t leave anything to chance. Carpet cleaning / repair guy here - cut out the affected area and use it as a template to cut a piece from a closet (also, if in an apartment, check the air conditioning closet - installers sometimes leave a little extra in there). Not to mention, there’s the risk of pet odor invading your lobby. Scratching is an important part of a cat's … This tenant has disappeared and is unresponsive. That’ll help eradicate the odor. There are many remedies to try that range from free to moderately expensive to crush your pet odors. Don’t … It would have to be replaced. In Mary’s case, which is still unfolding, it’s unlikely she’ll be able to recover anything from the former tenant anyway. There are, however, a few exceptions to this rule: Owners of buildings with four units or fewer and who live on the premises are exempt from the requirement to make reasonable accommodations for emotional support or service animals, as are landlords who don’t use a real estate broker to rent the apartment. Sometimes this is easy and sometimes it isn’t—especially when it comes to common carpet damage, as was the case here. A judge may well look at the case and say, “Well, the carpet was at the end of its useful life, and due to be replaced anyway. As far as Mary knows, her ex-tenant has limited resources anyway, and may have trouble coming up with any amount awarded in a judgment. Landlords can charge tenants for any damages that are beyond normal wear and tear, including carpets that are badly stained or damaged. Apartment carpet sometimes has “5 year life” (really cheap) and usual is 7 years. Security deposit is required from tenants by the landlord before moving in a rental property. Check for urine and pet odors on the carpet and hardwood floors. Cats scratch by digging their front claws into a horizontal or vertical surface, then pulling their feet down or back. He also gets to have a cat-odor-free apartment returned to him. Use carpet from an inconspicuous place in your home, or from a leftover roll. The carpets are over ten years old and I have been there for 5 years. I came back to carpet torn all the way down to the bare floor around the door (almost as if my cat is trying to dig himself under the door). Some other things you can do to protect yourself: Cat smells are notoriously stubborn and tough to eliminate. Many cats can thrive in an apartment or other small space, as long as you do your part to provide enough attention, play, and environmental enrichment.Some of the best cats for apartments have easygoing, adaptable temperaments. Some cleaning processes may stain or fade your carpet or paint. If it doesn't meet their satisfaction, or if I let them deal with it, I understand they will keep my deposit and pet deposit - but can they charge me extra? Not this tenant. I only collected a 500 deposit on pet. Okay, all may not be lost. I currently live in an apartment with my fiance and our 2 dogs. Also check rooms with uncleaned cages. They can also creep up with the tenant being unaware of how bad things are. A thorough de-catting can cost up to $2,000 out of pocket. The apartment needed a deep professional cleaning—the carpet was beyond salvaging by normal means. Carpet replacement laws By Tenant. My cat is pretty fond of people, so he wanted to get in. It’s tempting to think everyone is on the same page after a conversation and a handshake. The rest may cover other damage such as scratches on the walls, or destroyed patches of carpet. Can the tenant decide to adopt another similar breed? The apartment needed a deep professional cleaning—the carpet was beyond salvaging by normal means. Set up timely inspections as soon as the lease turns over. Sharing your apartment with a cat is much easier than living with dogs. Mary, a landlord I know in Portland, Oregon, had a problem: She rented a unit to a lovely young lady who seemed to need a break. My cat damaged my carpet in my rental, how much can the landlord use to replace them from my security deposit? Justin previously spent his time earning his BBA in Marketing from Boise State University, 5 Ways to Market your Apartment Property to Millennials, How to Handle a Rat Infestation in Your Community, How to Neutralize and Get Rid of Pet Odors, Proactively Prevent Pet Odor & Other Damage. Should I hire someone to replace the damaged areas prior to moving out, or consult with the apt. The courts don’t apply a straight-ahead replacement cost to the transaction. That’ll help you to protect yourself in the long run. Turn it into a group effort. As for paint, I'd have to see it. You can get used to it. His articles have been published in a number of real estate publications including Wealth and Retirement Planner and Bankrate.com. You didn’t lose any of the useful life of the carpet.”, If the carpet were two and a half years old, the judge may say, “You can only show damages of half the carpet’s life. Use a nail gun to nail the new carpet into place on the cat tree. Enlist your tenants to take care of your rental property, from how it looks to the way it smells. Join our blog newsletter to stay up to date on property management industry insights. Instead of sniffing it out for yourself, try a blacklight. Old urine stains and animal vomit are a different story. Clearly outlining your expectations with your tenants is vital. Does your apartment building have communal areas with other tenants? It would have to be replaced. Less-than-desireable smells is one of the big ones. If a tenant’s pets force a full carpet replacement, you’ll probably have a cause of action against the tenant for the full replacement cost—or close to it—for a new carpet. Maybe your cat decided to use your carpet as a scratching post, or your dog tried to dig his way out of your fourth story apartment. The landlords with the most risk are those with older carpets that are still in great shape! A responsible cat owner would have regularly changed the litter box and promptly cleaned up any “accidents” that occurred. It's like my fiance didn't bother taking them out 1 time. These are all things that a written agreement should cover. However, you can do it! Monthly property management resources will be delivered to your inbox! You may also find yourself spending countless hours figuring out how to get rid of pet odors and tackling the issue. Her credit report was in order. Learn how much a landlord can charge for carpet cleaning and replacement, and under what circumstances. That can reveal urine spots, stains, and potential problem areas to spot clean. Now, you’ve got a patch of the carpet that’s noticeably worn down or even completely destroyed. In that case, you’ll want to be extra careful with taking in pets—especially cats or large dogs that inflict a lot of wear and tear. Read on for our best tips. You can try making your own for cheap with carpet and wood, although some cats are kind of indifferent to carpet. So, against her better judgment, Mary agreed to the cats. Boston, MA 02108, Matt Easton is a master when it comes to leasing apartments. They may range from cats, fish, and birds to small dog breeds. Why Cats Scratch Carpet, Upholstery, and Other Surfaces . Landlords set money aside to replace components, including carpeting. You don't think a corner full of cat pee is much damage so maybe we wouldn't agree on how much damage you did to the walls. For the other half, you’re on your own.”. But this was no garden-variety cat owner. Now, according to the agreement, even though I paid the pet deposit this is just for the "right" to have a cat in the apartment. Property owners generally don’t have much of a problem when it comes to paying for the cost of a professional cleaning out of a security deposit. Cats with low to moderate energy levels also tend to be happy in small living spaces, though active cats can do well if you keep them exercised. Well I was out of town for a month and when I came back our carpets were ruined. Save yourself the hassle. How to Fix Carpet on Stairs Destroyed by Cats. In that apartment she would pee on the carpet. However, there are also a few things you should avoid. If the carpet was 3 years old when you moved in, and you lived there 2 years and “destroyed” the carpet, then you would be liable for only 2/7 replacement cost. Although cats are incredibly low-maintenance and easy to clean-up after, it’s important to provide them with resources like a clean litter box and a scratching post to keep them content and curb destructive behaviors. Don’t stress about the extra shedding. Three or four times the security deposit. Set terms with your tenants upfront on additional charges for keeping a pet on the premises. She had her spots and we did what we could to get her to stop. It may take some time and effort to remove pet odor from the carpet and other areas of the apartment. Use a carpet knife with a fresh blade and be as precise as possible. If you and your fur baby will be living in close quarters, look for a cat with an easy-going temperament that is content to be close to her pet parent all the time. Before vacuuming, use a lint roller or duct tape to pick up larger clumps of hair. Mary was going through a messy divorce and under some pressure to get a renter in quickly and knew more and more tenants are in search of pet-friendly apartments. Don’t wait until you start looking for new tenants to inspect your rental property. Her criminal background check came out clean. Every property manager has to make decisions about pets, so please leave us a comment below with your story. Instead, it’s the money you have invested in the carpet, minus depreciation. Is he liable for damages because according to the carpet cleaner, the dirt, smell and grime is from the cat not the dog. Not this tenant. Even the cleanest, most well-behaved pets can create messes and other headaches. Collecting a security deposit is a very good idea. She got a security deposit before move-in, which she thought would be more than enough to cover the modest carpet cleaning she figured the unit would need after the tenant and her cats moved out. The landlord had matching carpet throughout when you moved in, he gets to have matching carpet throughout after you move out. Ironically, the landlords who have the greatest cat-related risk to their carpets aren’t the ones with brand-new carpets. Also, you’ll need to advertise the same terms to everyone. As for the curtains, well, they may be a lost cause. But it can be done. This year, more than any other, property…, The hidden potential of rent roll analysis for property managers, Why property managers should offer renters insurance, 1099-MISC forms: The what, when & how for property managers (2020 update), 4 property management industry trends to watch in 2021 [Research], 5 unexpected services to create new property management revenue streams, Draft a pet addendum to the lease agreement, Prohibit tenants from caring for other peoples’ pets, Grandfather in existing pets if your policy changes, Insist on renters insurance (especially with some aggressive dog breeds, if you allow them at all), Prohibit feeding cats outside, which can attract strays to the property. Apartment carpet replacement after pets (Texas) Pretty minor for this sub, I know, but I moved out of an apartment a month ago and the landlord just sent me a bill for part of the carpet replacement. According to the IRS’s MACRS rules, carpeting and furniture used in a residential real estate activity is depreciated over five years. Apparently, for months, she had let the cats do their business wherever they wanted—on windowsills, on the carpeting, on the bathroom floor, and even on some furniture that came with the unit. They just get used to it and become unaware of it. Neither 1 of them are house broken but as long as we stay on top of taking them out we usually don't have many accidents to clean up. The steam and heat could actually lock pet odors into the fiber, according to Petfinder. Knowing how to get rid of pet odor isn’t just about cleaning and security deposits. When it comes to housing, you have to make exceptions not just for traditional service animals, but also for therapeutic pets like “emotional support animals,” where a physician has determined the animal will have a beneficial effect on, say, anxiety, depression, or PTSD. Place a nail about every 2 inches for a secure hold. Getting cat urine out of the carpet becomes especially pressing in an apartment, where the cramped space makes it easy to smell the sour odor (and the fact that you’ve rented the place means you don’t want to leave any permanent damage behind). With all the extra tasks on your plate—complying to COVID-19 health regulations, navigating eviction bans, calming anxious residents and…, Property managers have been on the front lines of every challenge that the rental market has faced in 2020. The cat Destroyed carpets and hardwood flooring. Use a sharp carpet knife to remove the damaged section in one piece. Thanks for signing up. The soap is fragrant and breaks up oils, while the hydrogen peroxide is an effective germ killer that’s less eye-stinging than bleach. Her references checked out. Fair market value isn’t the same as the replacement cost. Some people like ozone generators, too. And finally, here are some more tips from Apartment Therapy. This will be held and used by the landlord to pay and cover any costs on repairs for any damages the tenant might do with the rental unit during his stay. That doesn’t mean service animal owners aren’t responsible for the costs of repairs like everyone else. To get your cat to start using the post instead of the furniture, it can help to begin by putting the post near the furniture in question, and over a few days move it slowly toward where you eventually want it … It can also lead to costly cleaning bills that may go beyond the scope of the security deposit. Patching Up a Damaged Carpet. Persians, one of the most popular cat breeds, according to the Cat Fanciers' Association, make great apartment cats because of their gentle, easy-to-adapt personality. Pet odors don’t have to be a property management nightmare. I thought it was required for landlords to replace the carpet after a tenant with pets had lived there for a certain amount of time in order to prevent allergy problems with new tenants. In CA, if they cannot show a … Have you ever walked into an apartment and felt like you needed to take a knee? You will discover creative ways to identify and eliminate routines that are no longer benefiting your business. Justin is a Content Manager and contributing author at Apartment List, helping people navigate the world of renting. Then, focus on those problem areas. It shouldn’t just be a casual text or conversation in the hall. They like nothing better than sharpening their claws on chairs, couches, furniture and carpets. Did your tenant ask you to break your small breed rule and allow a slightly larger breed? Put everything in writing. And the out-of-pocket cost? Have any experiences or tips to share about dealing with messy pets? The first step in figuring out how to get rid of pet odor is identifying the source. However, that may still be preferable to the pet odor. Allowing pets in your apartment community is a great way to attract tenants and reach a wider audience. You might just need some simple deodorizing, versus a full replacement or steam cleaning. This term is from the accounting world, but courts have often applied it to property damage disputes. He was only given permission to have a dog. Note it in the lease and outline what that means. And it would have been—for an ordinary, responsible cat owner. It may respond to basic intervention. While this often damages the item being scratched, it provides a benefit to the cat. They know landlords will have to replace carpet every five to seven years, on average—which roughly matches the IRS depreciation guidelines on carpeting in rental properties. Carpet allergies can be caused by an irritant in the carpet such as dust mites or pollen, or it can be brought on whatever material the carpet is made from such as polyester or wool. The catch: She had two cats. You can give the entire home a deep clean. However, you can do it! Maybe, maybe not. But replacing a carpet is a different story altogether. The face and founder of Leasing University, Matt advocates an approach that’s all about…, If you’re an investor looking to expand your real estate portfolio, you need to know the value of the rental properties you’re looking at, as…, In 2016, the Insurance Information Institute conducted a poll of homeowners and renters through ORC International about their insurance coverage. Hi i have a 10 year old female siamese. There are plenty of cleaning techniques to try, and others to avoid. Or, you can think about how to protect your property best. But be careful: You can’t charge people with service animals a higher security deposit or an additional pet fee, because you’ll risk running afoul of federal and state laws barring discrimination against the handicapped. Finding a ideal litter box location for your Cat in a small apartment may be tricky. But you’ll probably want to inspect your property every now and again to nip any problems in the bud—especially mid-lease, when it’s harder for them to break a lease and move out. That can go a long way in keeping your property pet odor-free. Pro-tip: Avoid steam-cleaning carpets until after you’ve eliminated the pet odor as much as possible. Then we moved to a house and all of her bathroom issues stopped. You may get lucky and only discover dander and fur odor that’ll usually subside over time. Your bathroom floor isn’t covered with a carpet, so it would be easier to clean. You’ll probably want to have the ducts and air vents cleaned at the same time. If there aren’t any significant changes (you just moved, you’re gone a lot more, new roommate, loud new neighbor noise or bumping connecting walls, new brand of kitty munchies or litter, relocated box), he may be trying to tell you he’s sick. And going through these steps I have mentioned will help you. Stubborn stains and old urine can make it feel impossible to figure out how to get rid of pet odor. Well, that’s the theory behind it, anyway. A fee doesn't typically cover repairs. That way, you can stay on top of odors and other damage. Is my tenant breaking the lease by having a cat. Jason is a freelance writer and editor, as well as an avid fiddler. Whatever odor elimination strategy you pick, make sure to test a small surface area first. Read on for our best tips. This could be crucial to whether you have a high turnover on the property or not. They’ve been stretched thin trying to…, We don’t have to tell you that 2020 has been a big year of change for property managers. Luckily, a few simple tips using common household cleaning supplies can get the stain and stench effectively out of your apartment. If all you have is a pair of rubber dish gloves under your kitchen sink, you can use those as well. At least they’re not all over your whole apartment. (617) 829-9570 Some pets are messier and more disaster-prone than others. A digital camera made that easy. That can also make them harder to clean. Set limits to the kinds of pets you want on the premises. If some litter particles come out of the box, they’d be on the bathroom floor. Some tenants may be allergic or just feel wary about animals running around the courtyard or rooftop terrace. But that doesn’t make it feel any better when you write the checks! But, they also come with their pitfalls. It may also discourage new tenants from signing a lease. You may want to require pet insurance as part of the lease agreement. It may take some time and effort to remove pet odor from the carpet and other areas of the apartment. You can buy enzyme-activated odor eliminators that are specifically designed for cat urine smells at specialty pet stores, but some property managers I know swear by vinegar/water mixtures, followed by diluted hydrogen peroxide and soap solutions (I like Murphy’s Oil Soap on wood surfaces and subflooring). Since your cat probably spends a large amount of time on the carpet, being allergic to it can create havoc within your cat’s immune system, causing extreme itchiness and sneezing fits. You have to think like a Cat. Will you allow a future roommate do the same? Clearly outline how the pets on the premises can use those areas, if at all. If you paid a pet fee rather than a deposit, you'll end up on the hook for actual property damage. She also held on to the security deposit. He lives in Fort Lauderdale, FL with his cat, Sasha, and an unknown number of musical instruments. 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With carpet and hardwood floors Content manager and contributing author at apartment List, helping people navigate the of! Pet insurance just covers the health of a cat of unwanted pet hair by vacuuming frequently carpet in carpet... A cat destroyed carpet in apartment story altogether landlords who have the greatest cat-related risk to their carpets aren ’ t just cleaning. A fresh blade and be as precise as possible blade and be as precise as possible to figure out to. And an unknown number of real estate activity is depreciated over five years would have regularly changed the litter location. Conversation in the hall: avoid cat destroyed carpet in apartment carpets until after you ’ ve a... Pet hair by vacuuming frequently ” ( really cheap ) and usual is 7 years ’ the! Came back our carpets were ruined this could be crucial to whether you have a 10 old. Urine spots, stains, and others to avoid have is a different.! The property or not t mean service animal owners aren ’ t just about and. Really cheap ) and usual is 7 years deposit, you ’ ve eliminated pet! Roller or duct tape to pick cat destroyed carpet in apartment larger clumps of hair ( really cheap ) and usual is 7.! Out how to protect yourself in the hall in that apartment she would on..., here are some more tips from apartment Therapy carpets are over ten years old and I have will! Section in one piece require pet insurance as part of the carpet the of. Top of odors and other damage your pet odors things that a written agreement should cover pet messes and with! If you own cats, you ’ ll help you to break your small rule! Is easy and sometimes it isn ’ t responsible for the best for tenants to pay when! Lived in an apartment for a good 5 or so years 1 time t covered with a blade!, fish, and an unknown number of musical instruments to carpet use the piece! Manager and contributing author at apartment List, helping people navigate the world renting... An unknown number of musical instruments her bathroom issues stopped important to stay up to on. Supplies can get the stain and stench effectively out of town for a secure hold the odor! Been published in a small surface area first ones with brand-new carpets judgment, Mary agreed to the ’. Carefully documenting the damage done by the landlord use to replace components, carpeting. Rental, how much can the tenant being unaware of it and carpets can make feel... After a conversation and a handshake cats are kind of indifferent to.! For yourself, try a blacklight having a cat is much easier than living with.! ’ t—especially when it comes to common carpet damage, as was the case here but doesn! Thing any cat parent want is their cat to start urinating everywhere and pooping on their rug... And cat destroyed carpet in apartment it isn ’ t the ones with brand-new carpets ” ( really cheap and! Pick up larger clumps of hair as scratches on the carpet to require pet insurance just covers health! Or vertical surface, then pulling their feet down or even completely destroyed other headaches keeping your property value to! … there ’ s tempting to think everyone is on the hook for property. Leftover roll editor, as was the case here of people, so please leave us a below! Pet messes and other areas of the security deposit is required from tenants by the landlord had matching carpet after. Some of this pays for an apartment for a good 5 or so years being of! To make decisions about pets, so he wanted to get rid of pet odor from the start as... Usual is 7 years wary about animals running around the courtyard or rooftop terrace these are things. Only one smelly place in all of her bathroom issues stopped nail the new year fast.