0115 933 8997

Join the Comfort Standard, enjoy better letting.

Accepting Pets in Light of the Tenant Fee Ban

23rd Aug 2019

Category: Opinion

With deposits capped at 5 weeks, we're now commonly asked whether landlords should accept tenants with pets in their rented properties without the assurance of a higher deposit. The answer isn't straightforward but getting it right could be highly beneficial to landlords.

Before the tenant fee ban in June this year landlords and letting agents would commonly solve the problem of tenants wanting to move in with pets in tow by agreeing a higher deposit. This gave assurance to the landlord that if the pet caused any damage, they would be able to recuperate the costs through the tenancy deposit (with the appropriate clauses in place in the tenancy agreement) when the tenant moved out. It also worked well for tenants who, if they kept the property in good order and returned it without any sign of their furry friends, would still get the full deposit back. It was a pretty straight forward system which worked well for landlords and tenants. However, the Tenant Fees Act which came in to force in June this year has put a stop to these kinds of agreements by capping the total tenancy deposit at the equivalent of 5 weeks rent. Landlords are now left asking whether it is still sensible to accept tenants with pets without the financial assurance that damages will be dealt with.

For landlords seeking financial assurance one means of doing so is by raising rent for tenants who approach them to live in their property with pets. Of course, this is not ideal for the tenant who (unlike under the higher deposit agreement) will not be able to recuperate the payments if they leave the property in just as good a condition as a tenant without pets. While the landlord may be financially better off by a few pounds each month, it risks leading to bad will with the tenant and the potential of them not caring for the property or leaving it in a good condition at the end of the tenancy, as they would have if they were trying to get their deposit back.

So what’s the alternative? We think it’s a great chance to use it to your advantage as a landlord! Rather than seeing it as a risk, why not see renting to tenants with pets as an opportunity? Market your property clearly as suitable for pets and applicants are likely to come flooding in. In an environment where taking pets is an unpopular choice, if you have a property which could be appropriate for pets then it will significantly increase demand. You are more likely to have a greater number of people applying for your property and therefore a wider choice and better chance of finding a quality tenant. Not only are you more likely to find a quality tenant, but tenants with pets aren’t necessarily a bad option in terms of quality. They are more likely to stay for longer because it is harder to find a property which accepts pets and is therefore harder to move. With no fees tying tenants down now this could be an attractive option.

Lindsay

Lettings Manager (NFOPP Level 3)

Life-long Nottingham resident Lindsay previously worked as a Senior Negotiator at a fast-paced, multi-branch letting agency. She is fantastically skilled in all aspects of the lettings process and great at building relationships with our landlords. She is excited to dive into her new role as Lettings Manager and has recently completed the Technical Award Level 3 in Residential Lettings and Property Management with ARLA Propertymark.

Comments

We love to build lasting relationships
Give us a call today

Privacy | Cookies

47 Derby Road, Nottingham, NG1 5AW| Company Registration No: 0C365521 | VAT No: 157879546
Copyright © Comfort Letting Agents LLP 2020 - All rights reserved