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TODAY'S OTHER NEWS

No Pets: charities back call for reform of rental regulations

Several pet charities are supporting an attempt by an MP to reform lettings regulations to permit more pets in private rental accommodation.

Earlier this year the government said its model tenancy contracts would be revised to remove restrictions on pets, making it easier for renters to bring well-behaved animals into properties - however, agents and landlords are not obliged to use that model agreement. 

Andrew Rosindell, Conservative MP for Romford, has recently introduced the Dogs and Domestic Animals Accommodation and Protection Bill in the House of Commons, seeking dogs and other animals to be kept in rented accommodation so long as owners can demonstrate their care for them.

“What makes somewhere a home is something where special moments are created, living with a family, friends or companions” Rosindell has told MPs.

Now a number of animal welfare and animal rights charities have thrown their weight behind the campaign which would limit "no pets" clauses; if the legislation passes it will be dubbed "Jasmine's Law” in memory of a dog known to the MP.

The animal charities’ support letters are carried on Rosindell’s website and include the RSPCA saying: “Responsible dog ownership can bring huge benefits to animal and owner alike and we encourage all landlords to consider how they can work with their tenants to be dog friendly. Dog ownership can enhance the owner’s mental and physical health and encourage exercise, plus dogs make great companions - all of which has only increased in importance over the past few difficult months. As many existing dog friendly landlords will testify, dog owners can be some of the best tenants.”

Peter Laurie, the deputy chief executive of Battersea Dogs & Cats Home, comments: “One in five households in London now rent from social housing providers yet many animal lovers in these properties are deprived from owning a dog or cat, despite the key role animals play in helping to tackle loneliness and isolation.”

And the head of outreach projects at the Dogs Trust, Clare Kivlehan, adds: “For more than 10 years we've been working with landlords, letting agencies and the property industry through our Lets With Pets Scheme to provide guidance and advice. We welcome steps to address ‘no pet’ clauses that too often force owners to part with their beloved pet.”

At the start of 2020 the Housing Secretary Robert Jenrick called on the lettings industry to make it easier for responsible owners to have animals in rented homes.

Jenrick said at the time: “Pets bring a huge amount of joy and comfort to people’s lives, helping their owners through difficult times and improving their mental and physical wellbeing. It’s a shame thousands of animal-loving tenants and their children can’t experience this because they rent their homes instead of owning. So, I’m overhauling our model tenancy contract.”

  • James B

    Clearly nobody cares any more what the actual property owner wants to do.
    The U.K. is all about what can we do next to please tenants and make them vote for us

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    I simply can’t vote for either of the main stream parties again. Betrayal to our sector by this government and party is something our sector needs to remember when we next have to face the ballot box.

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    26 Years an estate agent, not yet met a tenant who doesn't have a "well behaved pet".

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    Absolutely.....In my career it all went wrong with the f*****g animals and it was a disaster of house wide destruction, sh*t, pi*s, hairs, smells.

    And that included the tenants too...They just do not get the issues.

    NEVER, NEVER, NEVER again.

     
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    Whatever happens, there is NO WAY any animal gets into my properties.
    And that includes UC beneficiaries who are also animals.

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    With all the rantings of Shelter, Generation Rent and these so called 'charities' it's like being in the middle of a Monty Python sketch. As long as the Conservative and Labour parties consider that's where the votes are, that's the future!

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    "Dog ownership can enhance the owner’s mental and physical health and encourage exercise"

    You might argue the same about having a job and not sitting at home on benefits.

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    And what about the destruction their animals cause to my building, and the messes in the house, the stinks and the sh*t in the garden and not to mention at smells and pi*s in every fibre of the building.

    And then I am the one who has to get rid of their disgusting mess and smell.......

    And then I am expected to worry about their mental state......!!!! They are all just naturally mental. Let them rot.

     
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    I just purchased a BTL - the owners left the garden full of dog sh*t - owners are just as bad as "tenants".

    I was a LA for 16 years - still now sourcing and managing outside of branch - the experience I've had is that it's not the pets that are the problem - it's the owners - and that's a problem if they're tenants, owners, lodgers, squatters or anything else. Sort out the owners and I am sure LLs wouldn't really mind...

  • Rob Mills

    I have been working in the lettings and insurance industry for many years, as a letting agent we never really had any issues with pets. As an insurance broker that has specialist products for landlords and tenants we have developed a tenants product that gives the tenant cover for PET DAMAGE to the landlords property, so the tenant and landlord are protected, let me know if you need some help...

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    That’s sounds like a great idea- how can we get more information

     
    Bryan Shields

    They never pay to de flea & the like. The next client always find out from neighbours & claim allergies.

     
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    Yeh
    My names Yapper and my brothers are Crapper and Dumper. As dogs we deserve a nice warm roof over our heads. In the winter would you want to go out in the garden to do a wee NO so we do one in the corner of the lounge sometimes .We add to the security of the house by barking loudly at every conceivable opportunity. Keeps the burglars away. YEH Woof Woof

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    Is there a charity to support other Human tenants who have allergies to pets and end up suffering due to other tenant’s pets in communal areas-lifts, hallways, stairs??
    And that ‘well behaved’ pet owner tenant supported by the letting agents can go live in the agent’s home-certainly not in my property to make mess, give allergic reactions or just bark the residents of whole block of flats, disturbing at night time with loud barking etc so it’s a clear No Pets on Health and Safety grounds.
    If these goldfish brained MP’s and charities are campaigning to allow goldfish as pets for tenants-no problems, but they have lost my vote and charity contribution for supporting other pets in my property.
    Well behaved human tenants with goldfish pet are welcome-other pet owners are referred to the council to help them.

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    Imagine a 60 gallon aquarium toppling over in the flat above. SHUDDER!

     
  • Barry X

    If successive waves, year after year of "vote winning" anti-landlord legislation hadn't made our lives so incredibly difficult and our businesses so precarious, low on profit and high on risk - with all sorts of potentially enormous - maybe crippling and bankrupting - fines for obscure infringements of pointless laws we didn't even know were "out there"..... if it weren't for all that then I think a lot of us would go back to calmly and politely accepting pets for quite a few of OUR (not their) properties.

    In the increasingly hostile anti-landlord environment its hardly a surprise that we exercise some of the few choices still left to us - that are allowed and not yet quite criminalised - to try and manage or reduce risks and hassle.

    The funny thing is - the way this is going - there will be a very DIFFERENT demand one day.... they won't just be demanding that despite all they've inflicted on us we go back to accepting pets..... various charities will be demanding that we accept TENANTS... yes, that's right: allegedly "well behaved" ones!!!

    They will be wondering why Landlords don't want anyone (humans, let alone cats and dogs) living in their (OUR) properties anymore!

    You might laugh now (and they certainly will) but the day is coming when this will make a lot more sense to the majority of landlords whose properties will be worth a lot more EMPTY than occupied - yes, we're nearly there... that day is not so far away now.

    In the inimitable words of Yogi Berra - "The future ain't what is was", and we know who to blame for THAT!!!!

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    I'm not laughing, Barry.

    Already we cannot say No DSS/HB/UC . What is next?

     
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    I always find it interesting that all the ideas to help tenants seem to come from people with no experience or knowledge of actually managing tenants or being a landlord. It just seems to me that every piece of legislation designed to help tenants just pushes rents up. To be honest if I was a tenant I would seriously ask whose interests are being served.
    This latest piece of proposed legislation will push a few more out and I suspect more are getting out than getting into the Lettings business which inevitably has only one effect

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    I see no reason why council or social landlords should ban pets. Nor should they be imposing stringent demands like spaying or neutering which are now being shown to be far too dangerous to be applied to animals in a blanket manner.

    Private landlords should be free to decide who they let to and what can be done in their properties. However if pet charities like the RSPCA think that private landlords should let to people with pets why don't they put up a fund to cover any damage caused by those animals? After all, if they are right and all tenants are considerate and careful with well behaved pets then it won't cost them anything, will it?

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    The RSPCA are after donations, not helping animals unless they can get a campaign out of their suffering.

  • Matthew Payne

    As I have said on previous linked posts, even if this legislation is passed, it will have no teeth whatsoever. Unless there is a list of demonstrable standards and behaviours that define "well behaved", that are then gauranteed by the issuing vet or the government with a financial remedy, then no pet will be deemed to be any different from that that they are today. An immeasureable risk.

    I assume Andrew isn't winging it with a plan to have vets meet a pet for 10 mins, issue a certificate saying they are well behaved, the industry forced to accept that as fact, and then at the end of the tenancy if they have got it wrong and there are pet related dilaps, then that's unfortunate and the Landlord will just have to foot the bill, as the vet thought they seemed well behaved when they met them 12 months ago. If that's it, I am sure we have more worthy legislation worth debating in Parliament, as that won't lead to a single additional pet finding a home, whether statute or not.

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