How to conduct a pet screening: Sample Pet Screening Application
You as the property manager have the option of accepting renters who have pets or not. You may be unaware of what limitations you can impose on the animals you accept and what details you can demand upfront. Our pet screening application template gives you the details you require to have all of your queries addressed and have crucial discussions with your potential homeowners who own pets.
What is a Pet Screening?
This is essentially a background check on the pet of your homeowners that your association or a third-party agency conducts upon moving into the community. You get insight into the pet’s personality, temperament, and behavior through this approach. You may learn more from it than you would have from a single “in-person” encounter.
Inspecting a pet is just as crucial to enforcing your community’s CC&Rs. You may avoid potential property damage and future noise complaints by doing this.
Animals that go out of control can cause destruction to your community. Untrained animals may bark, upsetting the neighbors who may complain about the noise. These issues can be avoided with the use of pet screenings.
How do you conduct a pet screening?
First and foremost, you should always be upfront with potential homeowners about any pet policies you have (such as size or species limits) and any additional costs they would be liable for if they bring a pet with them. This will save both you and potential renters time when filing an application in the event that the pet is not one you accept or they refuse to pay the needed extra charge.
The primary goal of the pet screening procedure is to prevent a renter from moving in with a pet that might seriously destroy your property or endanger other tenants. Pets who are boisterous, unvaccinated, or that speak frequently might cause issues.
A later, more problematic issue including a notice to depart or an eviction may be avoided with a pet screening.
Pet Screening Application Questions
Making a pet screening application that gives a high-level summary of their pet is a smart place to start. To help you get started, consider these sample questions:
- Pet Name
- What is your pet’s weight?
- How old is your pet?
- How long have you owned this pet?
- Proof of up-to-date vaccinations?
- Has your pet ever bitten/attacked another person or animal?
- Is your pet house-trained?
- Does your pet have any behavior issues? This may include bared teeth, growling, raised hackles, or excessive barking.
- Veterinarian contact information
Download the FREE pet screening application template:
What are HOA Service Animal Policies?
The ADA states, only a dog trained individually to perform tasks or aid a disabled person is considered a service animal. No other animal, domestic or wild, even one that has been taught is regarded as a service animal. Service animals are expected to assist the disabled in all of their responsibilities.
Although the law solely refers to dogs as service animals, several states also classify other animals as such provided they meet the necessary criteria. Be careful to review the laws and guidelines in your state regarding service animals. You should include the necessary guidelines in your request for a pet screening.
In accordance with the Fair Housing Act, you may also ask for adequate documents to show that the individual in question indeed requires a service animal due to a handicap. Not all disabilities are physically obvious. Your prospective homeowners could occasionally have mental illness and need a service dog to help them in social circumstances. Service animals can remind them to take their prescriptions on schedule.
You can request a doctor’s note to confirm that they need a service animal in certain circumstances. What you may and cannot do in relation to service dogs is listed below:
|Can do||Cannot do|
|To verify the requirement for a service dog, ask the homeowner for a letter of support or recommendation on your pet application form.||You cannot ask for a pet deposit. The homeowner still must comply with all other CC&Rs relating to pet ownership.|
|You can also obtain the service animal’s identity along with their medical data. Pictures or other forms of identification are acceptable forms of identification.||You are not permitted to inquire about a tenant’s medical history or the certification of a service animal.|
You can refuse a service animal if:
- The pet is not legal according to your state’s law.
- The homeowner refuses to take responsibility for the service animal, refusing to resolve noise complaints or clean up after the animal.
- The pet is a threat to the other residents of the property.