Pets are a new issue for landlords and renters

Nia Williams

September 22, 2011

As renting goes mainstream, many tenants, including pet owners, are finding their lifestyles affected, according to new research from FindaProperty.com.

Some members of Generation Rent have already been penalised for their pet ownership – 5% have had their deposits withheld as a result of having a pet and 2% say they’ve been evicted because of their animal.

Undaunted, 13% of renters say they would still break tenancy rules for their pets and keep them in a rented home even if animals were banned.

Samantha Baden, property analyst at FindaProperty.com, said: “We are a nation of pet lovers and fast becoming a nation of renters, but these two obsessions can sometimes clash making things more challenging when finding a new home to rent.

“In a highly competitive rental market, landlords have the luxury of being able to pick and choose their tenants and for some pet owners this can cause problems, particularly if they’ve failed to tell the landlord that they have an animal.

“It’s always best to discuss your pets up front with your prospective landlord – you never know – the owner might just be an animal lover themselves.”

While the Findaproperty.com survey highlights the lengths to which tenants will go to in order to secure the perfect home for them and their pets, the competitive rental market is forcing some renters to make even tougher decisions.

Battersea Dogs & Cats Home revealed that so far this year more than 141 dogs and cats were brought in to the charity for rehoming after owners suffered housing problems such as eviction and strict tenancy agreements.

Battersea’s head of intake Liz McWalter said: “The boom in the rental market has seen an increase in the number of animals coming into our care because of bans on keeping pets. Owners are coming to us because they are being left with no choice but to give up their pets.

“Battersea is increasingly concerned that many tenancy agreements are overly prohibitive about keeping pets in rented properties.

“We want to see tenancy agreements making greater allowances for keeping pets, so tenants do not have to make tough choices about the future of their animals.”

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