Is it getting easier to have pets in rented accommodation?

Is it getting easier to have pets in rented accommodation?

It’s debatable whether getting a pet is a good idea in the first place. Fur, mess and cost are all strong counter arguments for getting yourself a pet, but they remain enormously popular across the UK for homeowners and renters alike.

There’s plenty of research to suggest they’re good for your mental health, can improve your human relationships and can even increase your IQ as well as lots of examples of dogs being used in medicine to either detect illness or cure it.

According to the RSPCA 12 million households across the UK (44%) have pets, with the total number of pets across the country at 51 million. That’s estimated to have increased even further following the lockdowns of 2020 with many across the country buying or adopting pets whilst spending more time at home.

Moving home is a stressful experience anyway but add into that the potential stress of finding a landlord that will accept pets and things can get a little overwhelming.

For such a large cohort of the UK population, it seems silly that some would restrict themselves just to tenants who don’t have pets. There is, of course, the argument that tenants with pets are more likely to cause damage to carpets or leave a smell, but this appears to be a rarer occurrence with more regulated deposit schemes.

Not only that, but with renters making up an ever-increasing percentage of the UK population, it follows that landlords will need to start making it easier for tenants to have pets.

It’s getting easier

There’s more good news for tenants with pets this week with the introduction of the Model Tenancy Agreement. This new government legislation is a template for the recommended contract that landlords should use.

It prohibits an automatic ban on pets and means that landlords have to object in writing within 28 days of a written pet request from a tenant and provide a good reason.

Christopher Pincher, housing minister, said: “It can’t be right that only a tiny fraction of landlords advertise pet friendly properties and, in some cases, people have had to give up their beloved pets in order to find somewhere to live.

“We are bringing an end to the unfair blanket ban on pets introduced by some landlords.”

Better quality rental property

As the popularity and necessity of good quality rental accommodation increases it has meant that the government has stepped in and taken a more hands-on approach to regulation of the Private Rented Sector (PRS).

It means that over the years being a landlord, and estate agents, have been professionalised to a degree that gives many renters the confidence that they have the right protection and standards to ensure they’re going to be happy in rented housing.

This has never been more apparent, with a vast majority of private renters saying they’re happy in their rental accommodation. With this news that landlords are now looking to make it easier to have pets, it’s also following a trend of making it much easier for renters too.

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