We have had owners come to us and ask, ‘My tenant has a dog against the lease …what should I do?’

Hey everybody, it’s Matthew Whitaker and I’m back to answer the question, My tenant has a dog against the lease – what should I do?

So, this happens fairly frequently.

I always tell people, “Hey about 6 out of 10 applicants that we get have dogs.” Some people don’t disclose that because they know that people don’t want dogs in the house.

But before you know it they’ve got a dog or mid-lease they decide to get a dog and now you found out about it.

Decision Time

The first thing I would say is, you have a decision to make.

Number one, do you want to make a big deal out of it?

If they’re great tenants and they take great care of the property, you may not want to make a big deal out of it. You may want to allow them to keep their beloved dog.

And it may be an honest mistake. Maybe you just call them up and say, “Hey, you’re not supposed to have a dog, you know, what are we going to do about this?

Pet rent, maybe some sort of dog deposit, dog fee, whatever, but you just have a decision to make.

Now, if you’re very frustrated, you’re like, “Hey, no, this is against the lease, they shouldn’t have done it,” then the first thing I would do is I would call them up and talk to him about it.

If I were you, I would call them up and talk to them.

You can say “Hey, you know this is against the lease. This wasn’t disclosed in the lease document or this has happened since you signed the lease. And you said you weren’t going to have pets and now you have a pet.”

Talk to them and say, “Hey, you know, what’s the plan here?” The goal should be to solve it amicably if you can.

Lease Termination

If they’re like, “No, screw you, you can, you know, take a long walk off a short bridge,” then you may have to terminate the lease.

Then you need to decide if that’s something that you’re willing to do because you can terminate the lease based on this because what it’s called is a material breach of the lease.

So, you have two types of breaches. You have a rent breach and a material breach. This is a material breach of the lease.

You will go through the same process in most states to evict the tenant for a material breach.

So, the next step would be to go through the process of eviction if that’s what you decide to do.

So, that’s it. That’s Questions Owners Ask. I’m Matthew Whitaker with gkhouses.