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non refundable pet deposit - Landlord Forum thread 175515

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non refundable pet deposit by JD (Iowa) on March 20, 2009 @13:40

I have a tenant who refuses to pay a $75 non refundable pet deposit on his dog. He told me it was illegal in the state of Iowa to do this.
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Re: non refundable pet deposit by Anon (NC) on March 20, 2009 @13:56 [ Reply ]
Wow your deposit is cheap! I charge 200.00...dogs can cause a lot of damage.
Re: non refundable pet deposit by MFO (PA) on March 20, 2009 @14:30 [ Reply ]
I don't know about Iowa, specifically. I agree with the previous poster though - $75 is nothing. I charge $250. My sister charges $500. Non-refundable.

If the tenant won't pay the deposit, tell him you'll move on to the next applicant. I imagine he will have a hard time finding someone who does not either charge a deposit or extra rent each month.

Re: non refundable pet deposit by Micah on March 20, 2009 @14:34 [ Reply ]
Deposits are by definition refundable. What you need is a one time pet FEE or just add a certain amount to the rent each month as pet rent.
Re: non refundable pet deposit by Richard Greyson (CA) on March 20, 2009 @14:40 [ Reply ]
I don't know if it is illegal in Iowa, but who cares.
Tenants always seem to know that the landlord is doing something "illegal". Red Flag #1

You are not obligated to rent to dogs.

Although sometimes cute, dogs are not a protected class.

You can require a pet fee, a larger security deposit for accepting the dog or even a higher rent because you do not want pets.
The tenant can then take it or leave it.

Re: non refundable pet deposit by M-bone on March 20, 2009 @14:48 [ Reply ]
Is this an existing tenant? What does your rental agreement say about pet fees/deposits? Like Micah said, there is no such thing as a non-refundable deposits. Either charge a deposit or a non-refundable pet FEE. If this is an existing tenant and you have it in your rental agreement and this tenant brought in a pet, then give him a proper cure/quit notice. Be prepared to evict if they do not comply.
If this is a prospect tenant you are talking about, move on, you don't have to argue your pet fees with a PITA who doesn't agree, they can look elsewhere.
I personally charge a non-refundable pet fee of $300.00 plus $50.00/mo. added rent.

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