Stuck in a tenancy agreement waiting for the day that you have enough cash to buy your own gaff with a back garden for a dog? Well the wait may be over soon – for the dog part at least – as the government are proposing new rules for tenants who wish to keep pets in their rented homes.
As it stands, only a teeny 7% of landlords allow pets in their properties, and the majority of contracts are super strict when it comes to breaking their rules. Tenants can be fined for breaking their contracts, or if their landlords do decide to allow animals on the premises, huge fees can incur – such as additional rent on behalf of the pet or increased deposits incase of damage.
According to PETA, there are approximately 100,000 dogs without homes in the UK, with the RSPCA still having to put down a large number of healthy pets due to a lack of suitable homes to join. The new rule, as presented by Housing Secretary Robert Jenrick on the 4th January, calls for changes to the model tenancy agreement which would allow well-behaved pets into rented properties.
Speaking of the proposed rule, Jenrick said:
“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.”
Unfortunately the recommendations the Conservatives are hoping to roll out are not legally binding and landlords do not have to follow them, however if restrictions are continued to be put in place by landlords around pet ownership, an official law could be put in place to stop it.
The Housing Secretary has also released a statement to the press, saying:
“The government is clear there should be a balance with responsible pet owners not being penalised and landlords being more flexible in their approach, and it is right that landlords’ properties should be protected from damage by badly behaved pets.
“But total bans on renters with pets should only be implemented where there is good reason, such as in smaller properties or flats where owning a pet could be impractical.”
Here’s to hoping I can finally get that puppy I always wanted in 2020…