OpenRent Community

Latest proposal on pets

Here is an extract on the never ending issue of “Tenant pets” with yet another attempt at fixing the law on pets in the PRS.
If this rubbish ever gets passed I can see some tenants taking it to the extreme of a Crocodile on a dog lead , haha!
I for one will resist allowing pets … what’s your views??

The bill is due to have its Second Reading on the 29th January.

David Alexander, the joint chief executive officer of apropos by DJ Alexander, said: “This is a time of year when many people consider buying a pet as a present but for the millions of people in the private rented sector (PRS) this is not an option.

“Many landlords oppose the idea of allowing tenants to have pets as they fear their property will be damaged, may develop an unpleasant odour, and will decline in value.”

“Clearly there can be issues with inappropriate pet owners, but most people are responsible and regard their rented property as their home.

“They would be unlikely to want to live in a home damaged or destroyed by a wayward pet but there are steps that can be taken to ensure this doesn’t happen and if it does, then the landlord is covered.”

The bill proposes that tenants be allowed to have pets if they can demonstrate that they are “responsible owners” with a checklist of conditions to verify this which include a vet’s confirmation of vaccinations, spaying or neutering, that the animal is free of parasites and has been properly trained.

If these conditions are met, and the property is suitable, then it would be assumed that the tenant could have a pet.

Alexander added: “The last year has shown that people now, more than ever, regard having a good home as the most important part of their life. They want to feel comfortable; they want to feel safe, and they want to surround themselves with the things that make them happiest.

“Often this means having a pet. The Kennel Club published a report which said that 40% of puppies bought this year were as a “covid companion” and two thirds of new dog owners said their pet was a lifeline during lockdown.

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Who pays for the vet?

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Thanks for posting, Geoff. Am interested to see what Community members think!

this has all been here before. Wait for the avalanche!

THe property is suitable ?? None of mine are suitable.

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Lets see if this private members bill gets anywhere first. Most don’t

None of mine are either Collin! Ha! I think it’s an absolute cheek that some jumped up MP can dictate to Landlords on who can live in his investment. And the blighter makes it out that he’s doing us a favour!! If a tenant wants to have a bloody dog etc then they should seek accommodation that offers exactly that and if they can’t then bloody tuff!
The governments have tried this on several times in the past. The last attempt was by that Labour idiot Mc Donald who was trying a last ditch attempt to scrounge votes from renters by dangling a “pet”carrot at the Landlords expense.

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I am very interested to hear how you managed to make a property unsuitable to cats!

To the subject at hand-

I would be even less inclined to let a tenant take in a new pet, which this is very much focused on. An established pet, a landlord could potentially meet and judge how trained it appears to be. (For dogs, at least, it’s pretty easy to tell if a dog follows basic commands and acts appropriately)

New pets are a gamble for everyone. You aren’t just trusting the tenant to be a “responsible owner” in the general sense- but to train and manage any temperament issues. Pets can do a considerable amount of damage when they aren’t properly trained, even for experienced handlers there can be some property damage.

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simple one of .the other tenants in the converted house is alergic to cats and its true I have known her for 20 years

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Ah good reason! Two of our household are both allergic to pets and asthmatic. We’ve had to ask a landlord to rip up carpets because the previous landlors had had 3 cats living there for years and no amount of deep cleaning was enough.

(Another reason I’m a-okay with landlords banning pets!)

I’m glad you’re looking out for the tenant, that could really suck for her.

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I have to look after her She is my partners daughter !! and very asthmatic. There must be a lot of folks like that.

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I have asthma and always had pets. You can add a pet premium for pets which covers any cleaning/damage. However, not yet had any negative experiences with pet owners. If vetted and seen on home inspections you will know if a problem. With a responsible pet owner, they are more likely to look after their property and stay long term. To not accept pets is not good business sense. You can charge a premium of £50 per month, more than covers any concerns. If tenants willing to pay this it also demonstrates responsible pet ownership.

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I find that allowing pets into a rental property is simply hassle that I can do without.
Having to police your own rental properties for pet damage and pestering reluctant tenants to repair damage can easily be avoided by simply saying no to applicants with pets.
Your solution of increasing rents to cover the housing of a pet just fuels the tenant into complaining when the reality strikes home that they are paying £600 a year for the privilege of keeping a roof over bonzo‘s head.
Complaints from neighbouring property about barking, dog fouling and anti social behaviour all ends up resting on the Landlords shoulders.
I personally don’t have pets but feel as though I would be sharing the responsibility by agreeing to any tenants keeping an animal.
Then there’s the scenario of “give an inch take a yard” where the tenant decides that Bonzo needs a mate to keep him company while he’s alone in the property while the caring owners are at work. The potential problems and issues are now doubled, but is the rent increased accordingly?
Then there’s the ongoing issue of pet owners who promise faithfully to exercise the animal away from the property (unless it’s a rainy day and there’s a good football match on TV the good intentions and promises soon go out of the window and the garden is covered in crap!
I firmly believe that the politicians who repeatedly try to force Landlords to accept pets have absolutely no idea of the hassle and problems that can evolve.
Then there’s the situation that should the Landlord choose to evict a pet owning tenant there may not be many if any pet friendly homes available for the tenants to move into. This can lead to a long protracted end to an AST with a rapidly deteriorating relationship with the Tenant’s and a costly deep clean and new floor coverings to eliminate allergies for the next tenant
It’s far easier to just say no pets and ignore stupid politicians who use their support to gain a few voters

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Interesting response Ryan, so, a tenancy is agreed which includes a trained dog and all’s well. The animal dies several months later and the tenant replaces the old dog with a new pup. This goes against your initial preference of allowing pup’s into the property but in this scenario your tenants circumstance have changed and they simply went out and bought a new dog with all the problems and issues that goes with it. … so how would you handle this situation ?

I’ve had cats that scratched up the carpet really badly. Another time I helped empty a woman’s house and goodness the wood floors were ruined because she didn’t bother properly training the dogs and they pissed everywhere. (She owned the house, too!)

If you have irresponsible owners then you can end up with unspayed cat urine all over the walls and carpets- which is a major hassle to get out. Dogs and cats can do a ton of damage to walls and doors and floors.

Responsible owners, yeah great. But an irresponsible owner who leaves their dog to destroy the living room can cost you a helluva lot more than £50/month

I never said “asthma”, I said allergies. A neighborhood cat got into our house once and our then 5 year old nearly had to go to the hospital because his throat started closing up.

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Unfortunatley people think its okay to do the wrong thing and dont care.There are no gentlemen anymore. I let a tenant have a dog under certain conditions. They have not been responsible and they took up the weed control and bark chippings so the dog could shit on the mud, I stopped counting at 20 lots of poo, they blamed their kids for not picking it up. The dog doesnt get taken for walks so she will be treading mud and shit into my carpets , I am one in unhappy landlord. I cant see how I can do anything now, I am stuck with them.

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the place must smell . Do these owners not care about their own health and the health of their children.? obviously not.

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I really feel for you. It has to be soul destroying seeing your property investment being slowly destroyed by filthy, lazy tenants who allow there pet to create such a mess.
Through my experiences I think that most tenants have perfected the art of deceptions making promises that they have absolutely no intention of keeping.
I’m considerably wiser to these antics than previously and I print an additional document which includes an even longer list of rules than the actual STA. this is duly signed by both tenants and has been proven in court to be effective should the tenants not confirm resulting in an eviction.
Tenants have a belief that the Landlord will relax his stance on an issue due to the cost and hassle of pursuing them through the courts but my policy is that I will Sue any tenant who mistakenly feel they can abuse my rules and my hospitality and that I may shy away from the carnage they cause.
My advice to Landlords is:
(I)Create a document that lists all the “donts” not listed in your STA. ensure the following is printed in red lettering “ This is a legal document which includes additional terms and conditions to your tenancy agreement. The conditions are valid throughout the the full term of your tenancy. Sign only if you agree to be bound by the clauses stated herein”
(2) ensure that your Landlord insurance covers you for legal expenses! If not make sure you pay the extra to your current insurance company or a third party company to cover this element. Many tenants do feel that you won’t pursue an action because of the costs involved. By paying a relatively small premium you can gain legal advice and cost free action if you choose to pursue a tenant through the courts.
My last court attendance achieved me an award for several thousand pounds through the documents I made the tenants sign prior to handing the keys over.
Due to Covid restrictions we are suspended from evicting people save for exceptional circumstances of high rental arrears or unsociable behaviour but S21 can still currently be served when things get back to normality.

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I want lots of things that I can’t have and don’t whinge about it.
If a tenant can’t find a Private property that will accept pets, then the first place they should lay the blame is the Government for making a 5 week cap on Deposits.
Then if they don’t have a Guarantor that a landlord might accept, they had best be looking to rent in Social or Council Housing.

  • which ’ PRIVATE ’ rented property, is NOT.
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The building my flat is in doesn’t allow pets. Are they now obligated to allow them so I can be forced to rent my flat to someone with an animal? Is there a cap on how much extra we can charge for someone with a pet? And how can they police it anyway? We can turn down any tenant we want without giving a reason, how would they be able to know that was why?

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