New homes

New government model tenancy agreement encourages more pet-friendly landlords

Posted May 27th 2021
Dog and cat in a pet-friendly home

The United Kingdom is a nation of pet-lovers, with more than half of adults owning a pet and many more welcoming pets into their lives during the pandemic.

However, currently, just 7% of private landlords advertise pet friendly properties, meaning many tenants struggle to find suitable homes and in some cases, people have had to give up their pets all together.

Under the new Government Model Tenancy Agreement (the government’s recommended contract for landlords announced in January 2021) landlords will no longer be able to issue blanket bans on pets.

Consent for pets is the new default position, and landlords will have to object in writing within 28 days of a written pet request from a tenant and provide a good reason.

These changes are intended to encourage more landlords to cater for responsible pet owners, who will be able to secure leases more easily as a result.

Under the new agreement, objections from landlords should only be made where there is good reason, such as in smaller properties or flats where owning a pet could be impractical.

Reassuringly, tenants will continue to have a legal duty to repair or cover the cost of any damage to the property, meaning pet-friendly landlords’ properties are safeguarded against badly behaved pets.

If you have a question about allowing pets in your property, simply contact your local Intercounty branch and speak to one of the team.

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