The Government has launched a new Model Tenancy Agreement to stop landlords being able to issue a blanket ban on pets.
The Press Release, issued on the 28th January 2021, titled “New standard tenancy agreement to help renters with well behaved pets”. The aim is to enable tenants with “well-behaved” pets to secure a tenancy. The key headlines are:
- New standard model tenancy agreement to make it easier for tenants with pets to find accommodation
- Landlords no longer able to issue an automatic blanket ban on pets
- Just 7% of private landlords currently advertise pet friendly properties
The upshot, landlords should insist all tenants have Tenant Liability insurance as part of the AST.
The Press Release goes on to state that “responsible tenants with well-behaved pets will able to secure accommodation more easily”. What is a well behaved pet? This is certainly a subjective issue and one that no doubt will cause dismay amongst some landlords.
Consent for pets will now be the default position. Landlords will have to object in wiring within 28 days of a written pet request. A good reason will have to be given by the landlord for a refusal. Examples may include the size of the property, health related issues and so on.
Tenants will remain liable for any damage to the property. Most leading letting agents now include a contractual obligation on the tenant to possess Tenant Liability Insurance.
Housing Minister Rt Hon Christopher Pincher MP said:
“We are a nation of animal lovers and over the last year more people than ever before have welcome pets into their lives and homes.
But 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.
Through the changes to the tenancy agreement we are making today, we are bringing an end to the unfair blanket ban on pets introduced by some landlords. This strikes the right balance between helping more people find a home that’s right for them and their pet while ensuring landlords’ properties are safeguarded against inappropriate or badly behaved pets.”
The full press release can be found by clicking here…