Your search results

Letting to Pet Owners

Posted by Birchills on 07/01/2021

Letting adverts stating NO PETS are a common sight on any lettings portal in the UK. But it’s important for landlords to at least consider all tenants for their properties. Remember just because you advertise as Pets considered doesnt mean you then have to accept a Pet.

Here Birchills give some compelling reasons to consider allowing tenants to have a pet. 

How many tenants have pets? 

In the UK half the adult population own a pet. So it stands to reason that a significant number of tenants do own pets, and a much larger number would like to have a pet if possible. 

Studies have found as little as 4% of UK rental adverts are welcoming of pets. Landlords worry that a pet will damage their property and possibly annoy close-by neighbours causing complaints.

3 Reasons why Landlords should consider tenants with pets

For some properties, pets will never be appropriate; for example if the property is too small or has no garden. If it is a room in a shared house then the existing tenants might not want a pet-owner to move in. But overall, there are some good reasons to consider allowing pet-owners to apply to rent your property. 

Marketing to a larger section of tenants

As we’ve seen, a large number of renters either have pets or would like to be able to have them. Excluding pet owners will dramatically reduce the number of tenants who could rent your property. 

This in turn also makes it more likely that you will have a void period. The rent you lose during this period can quickly add up to being a worrying cost. The problem is increased if you are relying on the rental income to pay a buy-to-let mortgage or your day to day living expenses.

On the other hand, advertising ‘pets allowed’ means your property could receive more enquiries, get more viewings and be let faster. 

Pet-owners will want to stay with you for longer

Because it’s so hard for renters to find pet-friendly properties, allowing them to keep pets will mean your tenants are more likely to stay with you for longer. There are two sides to this. Firstly, they will be happier with their living arrangement than if they had to forgo their animal, and so will be less likely to want to move home. 

Secondly, moving home will be a much more difficult task for tenants with pets, due to the lack of available housing. If you have good tenants with pets, this makes them more likely to stay with you, meaning you’ll have good tenants paying your rent for a longer time.   

If they get one when they move in, there’s not much you can easily do about it

Lastly, if your tenants do move a pet into the property, then there’s not a huge amount that can easily be done to remove the pet without evicting the tenants. And if they are paying the rent on time, not causing any complaints, and you have not found any issues when inspecting the property, then evicting them may not be your best move. 

Include a pets clause

Your tenancy agreement should make it clear that any pets are there with your written permission, and that any new pets would require new permission to be given. The clause should also specify that your permission will not be unreasonably withheld. Failure to include this could mean that the clause if deemed an unfair clause by the Consumer Rights Act 2015. 

In any case, tenants are ultimately responsible for returning the property to you in the same state as the beginning of the tenancy; the contract should clearly state this, and you should make sure the tenants understand. Since tenants are on the hook for their pet’s behaviour, they will be incentivised to make sure they treat the property well and clean thoroughly before the end of the tenancy.

Compare Listings