Cuddly Corbyn wants to give tenants the right to keep pets

by Neil Patterson

10:36 AM, 14th February 2018
About 3 years ago

Cuddly Corbyn wants to give tenants the right to keep pets

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Cuddly Corbyn wants to give tenants the right to keep pets

In an effort to win over animal loving votes the Labour party wants to give tenants a default right to keep pets in their rented home.

Landlords can only refuse permission under the 2015 Consumer Rights Act if it is reasonable to do so, for reasons such as the animal’s size, possible damage and impact on future rental demand.

However, Labour want landlords to have to prove the pet will be a nuisance before keeping it can be refused. Therefore, this would stop landlords being able to advertise properties with a no pet policy.

The plans also include giving low income earners help with vets bills!

Labour shadow environment secretary, Sue Hayman, said: “People shouldn’t be denied the joy of keeping a pet just because they can’t afford a home of their own. For the majority of people under 30 buying a home is sadly less and less an affordable option.

“I believe the five million households who are forced to rent really shouldn’t be denied the joy of keeping a pet. Pets are not only good company, but they can also help reduce stress in their owners.

“So we want to consult with landlords to see if we can give tenants the default right to keep a pet in their home, so long as they’re not a nuisance. It’s important we don’t just design policies for those fortunate enough to own a home and we reflect the needs of the many, not the few.”

The NLA’s, Richard Lambert, said: “Around half of landlords say they are reluctant to allow renters to keep pets due to a perceived added risk of damage to the property, and the increased costs of repair at the end of a tenancy.

“You can’t take a blanket approach to keeping or refusing pets. The NLA has consistently supported schemes that encourage landlords to take on pet owners, such as the Dog’s Trust’s ‘Lets With Pets’, but landlords should have a right to refuse permission so long as they justify their decision.

“For example, common properties in the PRS, such as high rise flats or those without gardens, may simply not be suitable for keeping some animals nor beneficial to their welfare.”

In addition to the last comment by Richard some leasehold property covenants preclude keeping pets in the building.

A Property118 reader commented on the news that “I automatically turn down anyone who wants just a room and has a cat. Many people have allergies. It must be a non-starter in HMOs.”


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Comments

James Noble

9:00 AM, 17th February 2018
About 3 years ago

Richard, My main worry is that organisations such as Dogs Trust (which is really a big business with a long list of highly-paid executives) joins forces with Corbyn and jumps on this 'pets for all tenants' bandwagon. Less control for landlords; more dogs and cats, more mess, more noise, more strays and more profit for Dogs Trust and other such 'charities'. Am I cynical - yes. Realistic - yes.

Jessie Jones

10:24 AM, 17th February 2018
About 3 years ago

A tenant of mine had a few fish. Then a few more. Then a water purification setup. Then some spiders. Then some more. Then some ants became attracted to the fish and live spider food. There is also a mite infestation. And the ceilings came down from the leaking water plant. And I now have eczema from clearing up the spider exoskeletons that he left on the window sills and floors, as they have barbed toxic hairs.
Of course he has no money for me to sue him. And the house is now uninhabitable. It will cost me 1000's to sort out, and more in lost rent.
And it all started with just a few fish.

Richard Adams

14:15 PM, 17th February 2018
About 3 years ago

Reply to the comment left by James Noble at 17/02/2018 - 09:00
James, If Dogs Trust, and others like Blue Cross, jump on the Corbyn bandwagon like you fear they may then frankly I give up on believing there being any good left anywhere in the world we live in. When I adopted a rescue dog I, my wife and my home were extensively vetted. A visit to my home was part of the process to ensure it was suitable. The garden particularly was inspected. Naive and sentimental I may be but I just cannot foresee the dog rescue organisations seeing Corbyn's madness as an opportunity to start "getting rid of dogs" rather than ensuring 100% they only go to suitable homes. Apart from anything else their charitable status provides only for responsible adoptions. I for one would report them to the Charity Commissioners should they digress as you fear they may. Furthermore if news leaked out that they were offloading dogs on to unsuitable owners - tenants or anyone else - I suspect the donations on which they 100% rely would dry up.

James Noble

15:58 PM, 17th February 2018
About 3 years ago

Richard, you are in good company. There are millions of other naïve and sentimental supporters of animal charities in this country, the executives of which will be cheering Corvyn to the rafters as they continue to line their deep pockets with your contributions. But please don't feel there is no good left in this world; can I recommend the Salvation Army? (whose CEO earns £15k). What a shame Corbyn, of all people doesn't see fit to support the poor and homeless in a more robust manner, rather than clouding the issue with 'pets for tenants.' 'Homes for the Homeless' should be the cry from the Labour Party.

Darren Peters

17:16 PM, 17th February 2018
About 3 years ago

Reply to the comment left by Ken Smith at 15/02/2018 - 12:18I laughed so hard thinking about this & the Karl Pilkington link.
I have a btl in an ex local high rise and, if Corbyn does this, I'll be cheering myself up writing letters to the council asking them to hurry up and create a cow-friendly means of escape from the 8th floor in case of fire since they can't trot(?) downstairs nor use the lift.
Perhaps I'll also advertise among the circus community for short tenancies in the down season - plenty of interesting pet lovers there. Better start clearing out the Boris bike racks and car share places for the communal inner
-city cheetah petting farm 🙂 🙂

Richard Adams

18:49 PM, 17th February 2018
About 3 years ago

James there is nothing naive or sentimental about loving dogs and putting their welfare above all else. You seem pretty convinced the rescue charities will jump on the Corbyn bandwagon? If though the fatcat execs of Dogs Trust etc are so reprehensible then why are they bothering to vet dog potential adopters like they do now? Just give a dog to anybody who applies now. They don't need Corbyn to change their ways. Regarding their ways I believe they won't change. Remember the Rudyard Kipling quote "in this life I have feared many things most of which never happened". Bear it in mind in this instance James!

James Noble

22:22 PM, 17th February 2018
About 3 years ago

Richard, I think we have to agree to differ, otherwise we could be playing doggie tennis for weeks. ('Oh, East is East and West is West, and never the twain shall meet...' Kipling again.) I'm sure we are both convinced that the decision to allow pets, or not, must remain in the hands of individual landlords. Let's hope it stays that way.

Mark Alexander

6:20 AM, 18th February 2018
About 3 years ago

Reply to the comment left by James Noble at 17/02/2018 - 22:22
Interesting to read both sides of your debate. Thank you for keeping it clean and professional.

Chris @ Possession Friend

9:11 AM, 18th February 2018
About 3 years ago

Reply to the comment left by Mark Alexander at 18/02/2018 - 06:20
Making Pets ( or anything else ) 'Mandatory' is excessive and everybody with an ounce of sense should know 'one size doesn't fit all'.
There are plenty of examples of well-behaved pets (& tenants) and many to the contrary.
This is the basic fault in Corbyn's proposal.

Smithy @hotmail

10:58 AM, 18th February 2018
About 3 years ago

Re: owning a snake. One of my tenants had a snake in a tank - he was remanded in custody for a week or so - electricity ran out and the heating in the tank stopped. The snake died. So did the tropical fish because the pump and heater in their tank stopped. Some time later he got a pet hamster for his daughter - she left her fluffy hat next to the cage and the hamster chewed it and choked.
Another (very nice) couple got a cat - they used to let it in and out of the front room (double glazed) window. It wasn't until after they had left (with return of full deposit) that I noticed that the seal along the bottom of the window had been shredded by the cat's claws - it is possible they hadn't even noticed.
Another tenant - an elderly lady - had her grandson living with her. He and a chum 'rescued' a couple of staffies - they took one each home. And in fairness, the dog has scars where it had been burnt with cigarettes. In due course, a mate of the grandson moved in temporarily - with an un-neutered staffie. So the next thing is we have a litter of staffies. Grandson kept one. The grandson has now moved out and my tenant (who is now 74) is stuck with two fully grown dogs. I have moved her to house with a larger garden, but the dogs are not exercised enough and are damaging the doors where they scratch. She also does not always know when they want to go into the garden so there are issues with dog wee. She has been with me for over 20 years and the dogs are genuinely nice animals (built like small tanks but very friendly) so I am reluctant to get rid of her or the dogs.
Needless to say, all my tenancy agreements say 'no pets'.

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