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Renting to families with pets

Date Published 28 September 2016

With around 50% of the population owning a pet of some sort and the number of renters increasing on a weekly basis, are landlords losing out by excluding pets?

The Dogs Trust advocate the benefits of considering pets which increases the number of potential tenants who will view the property which in turn should reduce any void period and could encourage pet owners to stay longer in a property than families without pets.

At Tyler Estates, we always take a higher deposit from pet owners to cover any possible damage to the property from chewing or scratching; we also recommend landlords take out accidental pet damage insurance, a cost that could be shared between the landlord and the tenant.

Many of our tenants have pets and during our quarterly inspections, we have found all of the properties being looked after to a high standard and in many of the cases, have improved the property by decorating, we also support The Dogs Trust view that tenants with pets stay one properties longer than tenants without pets.

The Dogs Trust produce a good practice guide to help landlords and letting agents prepare for renting out to families with four legged friends and would urge landlords and agents alike to market properties stating pets considered and look at the individual pet on a case by case basis.

It is important to include a pet clause to your standard tenancy agreement when a pet has been agreed by the landlord, stating the type of pet and if that pet can be replaced if it were to pass away.
Another area to safeguard the landlord is to tailor the inventory, carried out before the tenants take up occupation and with a pet friendly family in mind: This would include taking lots of photographs at the lower level to include doorways, edges of carpet where it meets the grippers between rooms and newel posts. Pet friendly families often will agree to having the house professionally cleaned, make sure that this is stated in the tenancy agreement.