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  • Buy-to-Let

    Should a landlord allow pets?

    Good afternoon

    I'm about to let out my first BTL and wondered if any of you allow pets and if so, are there additional costs to consider, or additions to the tenancy agreement.

    As a dog owner, I don't mind a couple of dogs or cats, but wanted to check with you more experienced folk what steps to take to ensure I cover all bases.

    Also, if the new tenants are pet free to start and then decide they want one, what do I do if I want to allow them?

    I'm thinking dogs or cats, not so much other smaller, caged, furry friends, which hopefully would not cause any issues.

    I'm sure they'll be some urine tainted stories.

    Many thanks for your help.

    Regards

    Colin

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    Although you can ask for a larger deposit I've heard that if you claim for animal damage the claim often gets refused as being wear commensurate with animals.

    Instead I am inclined to charge a higher monthly rent, not a lot just enough to cover inevitable additional wear and tear. Pet owners are more likely to stay long term because finding another home is much harder with animals. Longer tenancies = less voids= less costs.

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    Thank you very much for taking the trouble to respond.

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    We accept pets and have a pet policy for them to sign and ask for £100 extra deposit. This usually covers it, although we have had stained carpets and that came out of the main deposit. Not so impressed by a tenant who keeps rearing chickens and ducks in the conservatory!

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    Thank you, I'll watch out for farm animals!  I may include regular checks if I allow them.

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    I say "clean, well-behaved pets considered". I make sure we discuss where the pet will do its doobries and how that place will be kept hygenic and whether or not the yard is big enough for the pet they have in mind and we talk about things like not allowing the pet to foul the pavement in the street or back alley in case they are not familiar with UK laws and standards on this.

    I hope that way, I'm clarifying my expectations. It's worked so far but I'm aware its a risk.

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    Thanks Alison.  It seems best for me to ask the right questions before agreeing.

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    The tenant should also be instructed to lock the pet away when workmen are coming round. My plumber tripped over my tenants' bouncy dog. Fortunately he wasn't hurt but it was a lesson learned for all of us.

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    Am not a fan of pets of any kind. Lesson learned through experience. Let property to a pet owner, the animal dug up the lawn in several places , I think a bomb crater may have been smaller then these created by the dog .

    To add salt to injury the smell of the urine in the carpets could not be got rid of no matter we did. Ended up replacing the carpets and relaying the lawn. So SORRY no pets.

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    Thank you very much for taking the trouble to respond.  I've had a variety of responses, still undecided, but will see if I get asked and what they have to start with.

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    We were asked if we would allow a pet dog after the tenant had been in place for over a year, they had kept the house spotless. We agreed as long as the tenant took out pet insurance, along with other criteria i.e. noise, no fouling in the garden etc etc. They agreed... But I never asked to see the policy (as I trusted them... Bad mistake) they never took it out!

    The interim inspection in October was exemplary, house in very good order (1st tenant of a new build) The tenant vacated the property over the Christmas break by arrangement. The final check-out inspection was completed on 2nd Jan by an agent, who discovered the dog had chewed the banister and fineuals woodwork, and the smell of "Dog" lingered after having the carpet cleaned twice. We have had a Quote to repair, replace parts of the woodwork and paint to a good standard exceeds the deposit!!

    I would NOT have any further pets of any kind in any of our properties, irrespective of pet insurance. In my eyes it was a hard lesson but a breach of trust, by not informing us that this damage had occurred previously. In an email response to my email to the tenant, they complained about the deposit being challenged through the Secure Deposit Scheme, Saying "that £20 should cover it..." have you seen the price of paint! let alone the wood work replacement. It's cheaper by far to say NO... Than having all the hassle of claiming and to fix it, with the new tenant standing on the door step waiting to move in, and wondering what's hell is going on. Say NO NO NO every time, (Sorry... Rant over)

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