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Can I Rent if I Have a Pet?

Many landlords object to having tenants moving in with pets – especially the larger pets, such as cats, dogs and house rabbits. The reason for this is pretty understandable – cats and dogs in particular can scratch skirting boards and chew tables, chairs etc. Cats claws are particularly adept at ripping fabric on sofas and cushions etc.   

Not all pets carry out these home wrecking actions, of course. Pets can be taught to refrain from scratching and chewing using a number of clever techniques, such as spraying the items with an odour they dislike, or using behavioural commands. But if a landlord has never been a pet owner themselves , then chances are they may object to your furry friend being brought into their new home.  

Can I Rent if I Have a Pet? PropertyLoop

Can a Landlord Stop You Having a Pet?

Landlords are unable to adopt a blanket ban on having Pet within their rental property. Whilst in recent years this may have been achieved through the landlord enacting a no-pets clause into the terms of the tenancy agreement, such terms have since been prohibited. Instead, landlords must apply the new model tenancy agreement, not only preventing owners from issuing a blanket ban on renter’s furry friends, but gives them 28 days in which to explain to the tenant why they would be unable to house the pet.  

Are Landlords Allowed to Charge More for Pets?

Since the implementation of the 2019 tenant fees act, landlords that had previously requested that their tenants that wish to bring pets into the property pay a higher security deposit, have been prohibited from doing so after a financial limit was placed on deposits. Whilst this was met with opposition from many landlords that did not wish to be financially penalised for allowing pets into their property, many owners have instead begun to charge tenants a “pet rent”. This simply allows the landlord to deal with the additional cleaning and repairs that can come with living with pets. With this being said it is also worth noting that owners are also prevented from demanding the occupants of their rental property pay for professional cleaning services. 

Is It Hard to Rent With a Pet?

With the number of renters that choose to bring along their furry friends on the rise over recent times, landlords will undoubtedly have to deal with a renewed wave of pet requests. However, after the implementation of the 2019 tenant fees act the number of pet-friendly rental opportunities plummeted, leaving less than 10% of landlords offering a home for renters that are accompanied by their furry friends.

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What happens if you don’t tell your landlord about a pet?  

If the tenancy agreement specifically stipulates that the occupants of the rental property must gain the permission of the landlord before introducing a pet to the property it is essential that tenants do so. Whilst this may seem, like obvious advice, with the repercussions for allowing an animal into the property being minimal, this is far from the case. Similarly to unpaid rent or misuse of the rental, bringing in a pet without gaining the landlord’s permission will be treated as a breach of the tenancy agreement’s terms. A violation of these terms would give the owner of the property sufficient grounds to pursue repossession of the property, removing the occupants and their pets in the process. It is also likely that the tenants may find it difficult to source another rental property as the landlords will be reluctant to offer a glowing reference. 

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