It’s one of those topics that creates a lot of debate on all sides: should you, as a landlord, allow pets in your private rental property? At the end of the day, the decision is yours, and we completely understand the concerns you might have, but we would be remiss not to share some recent findings on the subject with you.
Damage to property, noise, smells, and untrained pets are just some of the major factors landlords have highlighted to us in the past as affecting their decision to not allow pets in their properties. According to recent research by SpareRoom, 69 percent of landlords stated they didn’t allow pets in their property.
People rent a property for many reasons, not just because they can’t afford to buy. They may have relocated for work, or have had a change in circumstances. Loneliness is a huge problem for people across generations in society today, and it is recognised that keeping a pet can play a small part in the solution.
“Often, dogs and cats increase neighbourliness: they break the ice between strangers and can become a source of collective affection. But it is for older residents that a dog or cat can make a life-changing difference - as an antidote to loneliness and constant companion,” states Lord Best, chair of The Property Ombudsman and the working party on the Regulation of Property Agents, in a recent research report.
The report goes on to say, “Pets are also recognised as extremely valuable companions for those suffering from loneliness, with one study revealing that owning a pet increases your chances of being happy and successful and nine out of 10 pet owners claiming that they believe their pet is good for their health and well-being.”
The report also highlights the benefits that keeping pets has on people’s mental health, with mental health charities expressing how they can help people with depression, anxiety and conditions such as ADHD and autism.
So what measures can pet-friendly landlords put in place prior to starting a new tenancy? Tenants who have previously rented with pets are always keen to prove that they are good tenants. Many are happy to provide references from previous landlords and supporting photographs to prove that they left the property in good condition.
Now, we’re not saying that all tenants with pets will have a blissful tenancy, but then that can be said for any tenancy. But by putting measures in place to do the best you can to ensure that the tenant you choose will respect your property, whether they have a pet or not, you are doing all you can to ensure your next tenancy is a successful one.
If you would like a further conversation about letting one of your rental properties to a tenant with a pet, please contact a member of our lettings team.