Over a quarter of tenants haven’t mentioned their pets

Over a quarter of tenants haven’t mentioned their pets

13:34 PM, 1st August 2017, About 6 years ago 21

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Pet lovers often feel they have to hide their animals from their landlords in order to secure accommodation, a new survey has found.

The research revealed that 27% of UK renters with pets DID NOT notify their landlord about their animal prior to moving in.

Half of respondents, in a survey by animalfriends.co.uk, owned a pet before their tenancy began and 13% were forced to rehome their companion.

Of the pets that were kept, one in ten people said they had to hide their banned animal before a visit from their landlord, for fear of serious repercussions.

The survey results support Mintel Lifestyle’s 2016 report that suggested urban living was a reason for the decrease in the number of dogs and cats in the UK, US and Australia.

In almost 10% of cases, according to the new data, banned animals were discovered by the landlord and tenants were met with demands such as being asked to sign a new tenancy agreement, charged a higher security deposit or forced to pay a rent hike.

The average renter was charged an additional £160 in security bonds and application fees due to the animal living within the property.

Last month, the National Landlords Association warned that new government plans to regulate the security deposit fees could force many landlords to ban pets from properties due to the increased risk of damage caused by the animal.

The survey also revealed that almost a fifth of animals had caused damage to a let property, with 12% damaging fittings and a further 6% ruining furniture.

Westley Pearson, Managing Director from AnimalFriends.co.uk commented, “It’s important to ensure that you’re able to properly look after any animals before you decide to bring one home with you and that includes making sure both you and your pet will have a place to live.

“Some dogs can live upwards of 13 years so even if you have a place to live at the moment, you need to think about what would happen should you decide to move.”

The data also uncovered that 30% of pet-owning renters don’t have any outdoor space for them to exercise.

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Nick Pope

15:07 PM, 5th August 2017, About 6 years ago

Just had exactly that problem.

I am happy to consider pets and have one tenant with a 10ft python. He's very affectionate, lives in a large tank and causes no damage at all - most importantly the tenants asked and were given permission.

However another tenant moved in a dog without asking and I only found out when I called when tenant was out and it barked at me through the window. That was all sorted out but the last straw was on a recent visit when the tenant showed off a second pet which was in the living room, uncaged (though it was tied to a large piece of wood) - a fully grown eagle owl! This is a large bird (6ft wingspan) and is capable of taking small dogs, game birds and even roe deer fawns. I feel a 6A notice coming on!

philip ellis

16:05 PM, 5th August 2017, About 6 years ago

Reply to the comment left by Nick Pope at 05/08/2017 - 15:07Absolutely fantastic Nick. You have to salute these tenants 🙂 I merely pointed the tenant to the contract that said any pets should be controlled and any social disturbance would result in a request to control or remove the animal. They went 'ape' completely ignoring the wording of the contact, repeating that I said they could have animals. They refused to see mine or the neighbours point of view...and actually made it a lot easier for me to go thru with evoking the six-month break clause, with a promise that if they resisted, I'd have no choice but to evict them for breach of contract.

Matthew Dorrington

14:19 PM, 6th August 2017, About 6 years ago

I had a similar experience Philip,

Turns out my tenant had several cats running around, what started off with two soon escalated, good point mentioned about breach of contract! In fact this particular problem completely turned my three bedroom terrace investment into one big cats litter frenzy!. The tenant didn’t answer any of the agents calls or mine when asked about the cat's, It became obvious in the end that actually the tenant was using the home as one big cats kennel.

The tenant was so obsessed with his cats more than his own health. In turn this also became a problem for the neighbours as he didn’t clear up the cats mess after them, in the end I decided to issue a section 21 notice to the tenant, he had already began to slip back on the rental payments a couple of months before so now was a good time to do so! Sure enough he didn’t want to leave, put the blame on me and said id been a bad landlord (even though the rent was below market value etc) and said id have to take him to court! Soon the rent escalated up to £6k + in arrears, he showed up in court and admitted to everything, I got possession back thanks to Landlord Action and a 14 day possession order was granted, also the 6k to be paid back over 6 years, lock smith and bailiff did there job on the day and I finally got in to the property! As I type the smell of the cats is coming back to me!

Basically he didn’t train the cats, the cats pee and muck was everywhere from top to bottom, the garden was covered in cats litter. Now being a cat lover myself has this put me off renting out to people with cat's / animals, well not really as such, just make sure the tenants are being truthful, and are telling you when they have bought a pet into your investment!

The tenant problem is being aired on Channel 5 in the next few weeks with Paul Shamplina on Nightmare Tenants, watch at will 🙂

Gillian Schifreen

16:09 PM, 6th August 2017, About 6 years ago

Reply to the comment left by philip ellis at <a href="05/08/2017" rel="nofollow">https://www.property118.com/quarter-tenants-havent-mentioned-pets/#comment-93264">05/08/2017 - 09:42Touch wood Philip, we've never had void periods. In fact our tenants occasionally move from one of our properties to another as their needs change. They call us and ask up to let them know when we have a bigger/smaller house! Sadly not a soon as they'd generally like!

Also all our tenants have just been sent a summer Thorntons chocolate hamper. They love that coming out of the blue. Costs us £32 each with discounts and really does make a difference. We get praised on local social media.

philip ellis

16:59 PM, 6th August 2017, About 6 years ago

Reply to the comment left by Matthew Dorrington at 06/08/2017 - 14:19What a horrendous story, but it's obviously an exception....and most people a thoroughly decent and respectful. I do believe that my tenants really appreciate the efforts i go to...and I'm sure would fear the consequences should they start to mess me around, as ultimately they'd have to move out and into a shit-hole where the landlord doesn't care how they live.

I do interview all prospective tenants and have a rule that I have to like them...otherwise how on earth am I going to want to sort problems out if I don't like them...and ultimately trust them? Luckily I have lovely tenants and would do anything for them...so long as they don't have too many cats !! 🙂

philip ellis

17:03 PM, 6th August 2017, About 6 years ago

Reply to the comment left by Gillian Schifreen at 06/08/2017 - 16:09That's a lovely idea. Did you just do it as you were feeling kind...or was it linked a to renewal of contract etc.? Did Thorntons deliver?

Think I might to something similar.

Gillian Schifreen

19:16 PM, 6th August 2017, About 6 years ago

Reply to the comment left by philip ellis at 06/08/2017 - 17:03We do odd things like that for good tenants - actually all of our tenants are wonderful. Even a bottle of Lidl Champers at Xmas goes down really well. Yes Thorntons deliver and they always have offers on the hampers but I search out voucher codes as well. We probably spend a couple of hundred quid a year and it's well worth it. Sadly one of our tenants is leaving. She's given us almost 3 months notice and will happily show viewers the house. Doing that be extra does pay dividends.

philip ellis

19:26 PM, 6th August 2017, About 6 years ago

Reply to the comment left by Gillian Schifreen at 06/08/2017 - 19:16You've given me an idea. It was an Aldi panettone last year....maybe i should push the boat out next Christmas.

Gillian Schifreen

19:48 PM, 6th August 2017, About 6 years ago

Reply to the comment left by philip ellis at 06/08/2017 - 19:26Ha!

Ian Narbeth

14:02 PM, 7th August 2017, About 6 years ago

Reply to the comment left by Matthew Dorrington at 06/08/2017 - 14:19When I was a student I rented a flat with two other law students. The dining room had previously housed a male cat which had sprayed. The noxious smell made the room unusable for the entire 9 months we lived there.

If a property is let unfurnished then it's one thing. The cats can rip up the tenant's curtains and soft furnishings but I would not want pets in a furnished property absent a very substantial deposit.

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