As debate rages about whether pets should be allowed in more private rental properties, a senior house building figure has spoken up for the importance of cats, dogs and other animals at home.
Peter Morgan, managing director at Audley Villages, says: “Pets can be great companions, and for many people they are key to wellbeing, alleviating stress, anxiety, feelings of loneliness and encouraging people to enjoy the great outdoors. Looking after a pet is a full-time responsibility but comes with big rewards.
“It has been a challenging year for everyone and there has never been a more important time to put health and wellbeing first. During this period, 3.2m pet lovers welcomed a pandemic pet into their home making a total of 17m households in the UK responsible for a pet’s welfare.”
Morgan’s company operates in the retirement development sector but his arguments echo those put forward by advocates of pets in the rental sector.
“Many worry that in later life if they need to move home they will have to give up their beloved pets, this shouldn’t be the case and that’s no different in retirement villages. At Audley, property owners are welcome, and encouraged, to bring their pets, be that their Golden Retriever, pet rabbit or even lizard” he adds.
It’s currently National Pet Month and there are an estimated 34m pets in the UK, with cats and dogs accounting for 12m each.
The pets-in-rental-properties debate has raged in recent months as a result of the go vernment issuing a new model tenancy agreement which includes consent for pets as the default position, meaning agents and landlords who opt to use this type of tenancy agreement are no longer able to issue blanket bans on pets.
In addition Conservative MP Andrew Rosindell’s Dogs and Domestic Animals Accommodation and Protection Bill has had its first reading in the House of Commons; Rosindell says he favours an amendment to the Tenant Fees Act which would allow agents and landlords to charge tenants for additional insurance if they kept a pet.