Last Updated: November 24, 2023 • Visit Blog Homepage


A dog daycare and boarding kennel business can be a financially & emotionally rewarding venture, but it’s important to choose the right location for your business to be successful. One of the major decisions that must be made is whether to rent or own a space. If you're lucky enough to have an old barn or storage shed on your property, you're already ahead of the game. Unfortunately, most of us aren't lucky enough, so we need to go out and buy a facility or rent one.

This is going to be one of the largest expenses of your business, so you're going to need to make sure you thoroughly analyze if it makes more sense to rent your space or to invest in purchasing the space outright. Both options have their pros and cons, and it’s important to consider each one before making a final decision.

In this post, we’ll explore the pros and cons of owning versus renting a dog daycare space to help you make an informed decision.

Pros of Owning a Dog Daycare Space

Sense of Security

One of the biggest benefits of owning a dog daycare space is peace of mind. As the owner of the property, you know that even if you have a bad month, you're not going to miss a rent payment since you already own the entire building. This sense of security will help you not overreact to situations like a slow month here or there.

Potential for Appreciation

Another advantage of owning a dog daycare space is the potential for appreciation. If the property increases in value over time, you can potentially sell it for a profit. This can be especially beneficial if you’re looking to expand your business or retire in the future. Buying a warehouse in an up-and-coming neighborhood might be the perfect place for your dog daycare. The current value of the property is low, but in 10 years time, it might be THEE place in town, and then you can think about selling your facility and either retiring on the revenue or using the income to buy an even bigger space in another part of town.

Tax Benefits

Owning a property also provides certain tax benefits. For example, mortgage interest and property taxes may be tax-deductible, which can help lower your overall tax bill. We're not accountants or tax professionals here at DoggieDashboard, so you're going to want to talk with your tax attorney to see what the possible benefits are of owning your own facility.

Cons of Owning a Dog Daycare Space

Upfront Costs

One of the biggest disadvantages of owning a dog daycare space are the upfront costs. Purchasing a property requires a large initial investment, including a down payment and closing costs. Ideally you're going to want to have investors that help you pay for the entire building, since taking out a huge mortgage on the property isn't going to give you that peace of mind we talked about above. It's best to outright own your property instead of financing it for years to come.

Maintenance Costs

Owning a property also requires regular maintenance and repairs, which can be costly. This includes everything from fixing leaks and fixing broken windows to paying for landscaping and pest control. When you rent a property, you can almost always get the landlord to make essential repairs since that is part of the rental agreement. If the water heater or AC dies, you just need to give them a call and they'll send over the repairman. Done! When you own the property, it's on you, both physically and financially to make those repairs.

Responsibility

When you own a property, you’re also responsible for its upkeep and maintenance. This can be a lot of work, especially if you have a large dog daycare space. Most dog daycares or boarding kennels have a large outdoor space where the dogs are allowed to run during the day. If this area needs to be landscaped and maintained, that's going to be on you. If you were renting, you could include that kind of lawn maintenance in the rental agreement, but if you own it, it's all you!

Pros of Renting a Dog Daycare Space

Flexibility

Renting a dog daycare space provides you with a lot of flexibility. If you need to move your business for any reason, you can simply find a new location to rent. One year goes by pretty fast. If you're not 100% sure on your location, you can always rent for a year and see how the business does. If it goes well, you can look at buying in the same area. On the other hand, if business isn't too hot in that area, you can always look to move to a more populated or trafficked area.

Lower Upfront Costs

Renting a dog daycare space also has lower upfront costs compared to owning a property. You don’t need to make a large down payment, and you don’t need to worry about closing costs. You might still have to pay something like first month, last month and a deposit, but it's going to be much less expensive than the costs of buying the property. If you're not flush with money to start your new business, renting might be the way to go.

No Maintenance Responsibilities

When you rent a dog daycare space, you don’t need to worry about maintenance and repairs. The property owner is responsible for these tasks, which can be a huge relief for busy dog daycare owners. Let's be real, things are going to break when you start your business. The garage door will rust shut, the AC will stop working, the heater will give out. These things are just part of running a business. By not owning your facility, you can hand these responsibilities off to your landlord.

Cons of Renting a Dog Daycare Space

Limited Control

Renting a dog daycare space means that you don’t have complete control over the property. This can be an issue if you want to make changes or improvements to the space. Some landlords are going to be okay with you making changes or adding walls, etc. Others might not want you making any major changes and then you're forced to build your business to their specs. Look into adding certain amendments to your contract before signing it.

Lack of Security

Renting a dog daycare space also means that you don’t have complete control over the surrounding area. This can be a security concern if you have valuable equipment or supplies that need to be protected. You can always ask your landlord to install security cameras, but they might not see it as a worthwhile investment or they might say okay, but force you to pay the bill.

No Potential for Appreciation

Finally, renting a dog daycare space means that you don’t have the potential for appreciation. You won’t be able to sell the property for a profit if it increases in value over time. It might be a nice thing to see your surrounding neighborhood slowly turn from a rundown commercial area into a happening spot in town, but that also means that your rent will most likely increase and you're not going to see any profit when the owner eventually sells your property to some coffee chain. ;-)

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