Every dog has its day: Landlords and tenants in rare joint celebration as Government paves the way for renters to own pets without causing massive risk for property owners
- Landlords and tenants across Britain had a rare moment of joint celebration
- Housing Secretary announced plans to let renters have a legal right to keep a pet
- Plan allows landlords to ask tenants to get insurance for pets causing damage
- It would end three years of many renters not being able to have pets with them
Landlords and tenants across Britain had a rare moment of joint celebration today after the Government paved the way for renters to own pets without causing massive risk for property owners.
Housing Secretary Michael Gove’s Renters Reform Bill could allow tenants to have a legal right to keep a pet while landlords could request people living in their properties to take out insurance for damage caused by animals.
Ben Beadle, 40, is the chief of the National Residential Landlords Association, the UK’s largest group for private residential landlords.
He told MailOnline that although he was glad of the proposals he wished they had come sooner after ‘years’ of strife that left many landlords having to ban pets from rented homes.
Housing Secretary Michael Gove, pictured with his Bichon Frize called Snowy, has announced plans that pave the way for renters to keep pets without leaving landlords with unnecessary risk of damage
Law changes in 2019 made it illegal for landlords to ask tenants to take out insurance for damage caused by pets as part of their tenancy agreement
Mr Beadle, who is a landlord himself, said allowing tenants to keep pets was ‘a question of risk’ because of the damage the animals may cause.
Law changes in 2019 made it illegal for landlords to ask tenants to take out insurance for damage caused by pets as part of their tenancy agreement.
By proposing to allow such insurance, the Government is ‘correcting an issue of their own making’, Mr Beadle said, as landlords will now be able to mitigate against potential damage.
He said: ‘I just wish the Government had listened to stakeholders originally.
‘It’s a good move. It’s something we have campaigned on.’
More than four million families currently live in private rented accommodation in England, but just seven per cent of landlords advertise their properties as being pet-friendly.
The Cats Protection charity, which has been campaigning for rules to be changed, estimates there are one million households who would like to own a cat but cannot because they rent.
Chief of the National Residential Landlords Association Ben Beadle, 40, welcomed the proposal, although he told MailOnline he wished the Government had ‘listened to stakeholders originally’
As part of the renting shake-up, ministers will change the law to prevent landlords having blanket bans on pets.
Property owners will need to have a good reason to refuse permission for a tenant to have an animal in their home but renters will get the power to challenge their landlord’s decision.
A Government source said: ‘Would-be pet owners are being unfairly deprived of the company and companionship of an animal by their landlords – so we’ll change the law to end this unfairness.’
Conservative MP Andrew Rosindell said: ‘For most people, being separated from their dog is no different from being separated from their brother or sister’
Tory MP Andrew Rosindell, who sponsored the Dogs and Domestic Animals Accommodation Protection Bill, said: ‘Dogs are more than man’s best friend: they are equal members of the family.
‘For most people, being separated from their dog is no different from being separated from their brother or sister.
‘Sadly, pet owners who move into rented accommodation face the reality that their family could be torn apart because most landlords in Britain have unnecessary bans or restrictions on pet ownership.
‘For those who depend on the companionship of their dog and need their loving friend to be with them—especially those who live alone—such restrictions are nothing less than discrimination, cruel to animal and owner alike.’