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Pets In Lets: MPs urge government to enable tenants to keep animals

A respected political website claims that over 30 MPs from a range of political parties have written to the Housing Secretary urging that private tenants be allowed to keep pets in their properties.

The approach is that landlords should be able to charge pet-specific fees - such as insurance costs or additional deposits - with the 2019 Tenant Fees Act amended to make the fees legal. 

The Politics Home website says a letter to Robert Jenrick has been penned by Conservative MP Andrew Rosindell outlining the proposals, which have the backing of Labour’s Andrew Gwynne, Green Party MP Caroline Lucas, Liberal Democrat leader Sir Ed Davey and Scottish Nationalist Lisa Cameron. 


Rosindell is a long-time advocate of keeping pets in rental properties. 

He is promoting the Dogs and Domestic Animals Accommodation and Protection Bill in the House of Commons. The measure - which has had its first reading but has yet to make significant progress because of a backlog of Commons activity caused by the pandemic - is urging a reform of laws allowing dogs and other animals to be kept in rented accommodation so long as owners can demonstrate their care for them.

Rosindell has also stated in the past that he wants a change to the Tenant Fees Act. 

In a foreword to a report by pro-pet group AdvoCATS, Rosindell wrote earlier this year: “The Tenant Fees Act of 2019 had positive aims but it has clearly been harmful to the cause of greater pet ownership fo renters, an issue which has come to a head given the loneliness and self-isolation many have suffered during this pandemic, something which a dog or a cat could really ameliorate.

“Amending it to allow for landlords to require insurance as part of the permitted payments might only be a start, but it would be a positive start and I hope the government explores this as an option.” 

Supporters of Rosindell’s letter to Jenrick point out that a simple Commons vote on an amendment to the Act would be sufficient to trigger the change - completely new legislation, potentially taking years, would not be required.


There have been several pressure groups and politicians calling for change to allow pets, especially following the pandemic’s restrictions prompted a surge in the purchase of dogs in particular. 

A spokesperson for the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government says: “Our changes to the Model Tenancy Agreement will help make it easier for tenants with pets to rent privately by removing restrictions on responsible tenants with pets and encouraging landlords to offer greater flexibility.

“They aim to strike a balance between protecting landlords’ property from being damaged by badly behaved pets, whilst ensuring responsible tenants are not unfairly penalised.”

You can see the PoliticsHome story here.

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  • icon

    I do NOT want pets in my rental home. End of story. It's my house and I'll decide who and what lives in it, not the government.
    I live with my wife (in another house) who has cats and they sh*t and p*ss all over the place. And to reinforce what I just wrote, not two hours ago I watched her cat crap on the floor right in front of me. It's her house and that's her choice but it's not happening in my house. Sod that for a game of soldiers!
    What the hell has this got to do with the government anyway? I suppose that next I'll be required to provide a garage for tenants' cars (I only have a driveway)?


    I'm a renter. And I FULLY agree with you.

  • icon

    Why is it that I am not allowed to post with the word 'sh*t' but 'crap' is ok? Go figure!


    😃😃👍It because I'm a renter! Seriously though, it's because the algorithm is written by people who don't know grammar. Expanding a word into the present participle often gets it through, same on TikTok.
    80% of the worlds software is written in India. I went there for 13 years and learnt Hinglish! -true story!

    In India, the streets are littered (pun intended) with labrador dogs. All the 'wild' dogs are Labrador-breeds. The reason? The middle classes own dogs. It's very expensive. And they get abandoned. Over the last 39 years or do, I've witnessed the change in wild dogs. Now they are (for dime reason) all in-breeds of labradors.
    We'll see the same here. As Landlords are obligated (forced) by well-intentioned, but uneducated MP's, to allow people to own pets in rented property, as soon as the 'rent' becomes a financial difficultly, the very real expenses of dog/cat ownership will kick-in. And dogs/cats will be abandoned.
    By interfering with LL's decisions, perhaps making them go against their intuition, we will create new problems, bigger and unexpected.
    Here's another question- when I complain about my neighbour's dog- I'm obligated to do so directly with them.
    Not do in a rented property- I can 'complain' to the LL.
    Evictions because of nuisance pets? Or an abandoned dog?...

  • John Ahmed

    If I allow tenants in with pets I will charge a hefty premium.
    I'm starting to get fed up with this government and its interference with private landlords. I don't mind pets, but a lot of tenants leave a mess to start with. Simple facts are a lot of tenants do not look after the property as it is not theirs!
    I'd like to see a sensible approach to the private landlord as most of them do a really good job and contribute a great deal both to the social system and to GDP.

  • icon

    "which have the backing of Labour’s Andrew Gwynne, Green Party MP Caroline Lucas, Liberal Democrat leader Sir Ed Davey and Scottish Nationalist Lisa Cameron."

    So nobody of any significance then thank goodness.


    I recollect reading that Lisa Cameron owned and rented out a flat which was formerly social housing and bought at a discount.

    If this and other former social housing properties were still available then private landlords would not need to be caught up in this nonsense.

    We could then leave problem tenants for the social sector to deal with and focus on providing quality homes for quality tenants. I have always focused on higher end properties and have only had 3 problem tenants out of over 300, with only one eviction ( someone who went off the rails from a good job on to drugs and became a DSS claimant but I never saw his housing benefit).

  • icon

    Private tenants are already allowed to keep pets in a rental property. If the landlord agrees that is.

    These MP's need to realise that the tenant doesn't own the property, the landlord does.


    I agree. It is not a 'right' to own and live with a domestic animal.

  • icon

    Ask me - not the Housing Secretary! Prove you are a decent tenant who looks after my property and you can have a pet - but if you are out at work all day you can't have a dog however good a tenant you are!

  • Matthew Payne

    Finally....its only taken them 30 months to wake up. Insurance won't cut it as we have dicussed many times, noone will underwrite it at a sensible premium, tenants or landlords won't treat it seriously for different reasons. Pet deposits are the only way forward, but they have to be sensible. If the commons cap them at a weeks rent or similar, nothing will change....


    Pet deposits are the (stinky) problem.

  • George Dawes

    If you can take a big deposit to cover damage ok , otherwise no way

  • icon

    what is the point of tenancy agreements,if this crackpot government makes them void????????
    I feel Landlord human rights are being broken!

  • icon

    I'm a renter. I think we are living in the Middle Ages, living with 'domestic' animals in our houses. Private or rented, it's about time people stopped seeing 'pets' as a 'right' and stared seeing them for what they are- domestic animals. No dog or Carly owner can claim to be an animal lover if they own an animal that will eat literally 1000's of animals that are kept up n the most appalling conditions, slaughtered and then fed to their 'pet'. Cats account for half of all garden bird kills, dogs account for half of all council complaints. If I owned a property, I wouldn't Leto meat-eaters no, shitting, shedding animals in it. Why should I expect my landlord to feel any different?


    How come you can write 'shitting' in your post but when I wrote 'sh*t' in mine I got told off and made to change the word (by use of the *). That's just not fair.


    Is this about letting to people with a pet cat or dog? Both species have lived with humans for 10's of thousands of years. Aside from a minority of chippy landlords we have found a solution for cohabitation which works for all species.
    If I was in the market to rent with a pet that eats literally 1,000's of animals, I would look for a house with very thick bars.
    Other than that, what is a Carly?

  • icon

    Easy one this if it becomes law that you cannot refuse pets.
    Three tenancy rates ie £895 for no pets £995 for a cat £1095 for a dog.
    If during tenancy you decide to get a pet then that’s what the rent will be. If you want to have a pet you will be paying for it and you will be happy
    Just the same if you decide to buy a Jaguar or Bentley then your costs will be more.
    Can’t expect to own a prestige car on Fiat 500 money


    That would be fair enough. I own a Honda Goldwing 2019 and I can't insure it without a garage. My rent, I'm guessing, reflects the fact the property has a garage, as I (guessing again) imagine a two bedroom flat without a garage would be cheaper.
    Obviously, if you buy a new Goldwing, you're not trying to save money!!😃😃

    The same if you own a pet- dog, cat, goats, horses, chickens, rabbits etc you are not trying to save money!
    So if renters want animals in their domicile, make them pay for it. There is nothing unreasonable in that. And owning animals is not a human right, anymore than owning a motorcycle is.
    But... just as my LL is not legally obligated to provide me with a garage, she/he isn't legally obligated to provide me with animal stables.


    Styx, a Honda Goldwing, very nice, I had a BSA Super Rocket in the long hot summer of 76 (aged 22) loved it until I got nicked speeding and lost my licence for 3 months.
    I agree your comment those that want to get onto the property ownership ladder need to make sacrifices, if they won't make sacrifices while young they will be tenants for life, their choice .

  • icon

    An 'friend' of mine has just spent £1500 hours n call out and treatment for a 10 yr old dog that in all probability will die within the year. She owns two dogs. And received PIP. And UC. How are supposed to fight for more funds and benefits when these idiots are feeding it to their dogs? What are we going to do, pay their rent AND 15 years of animal feed and vet bills? I'm a renter. DOGS are already a major nuisance, shouting everywhere and barking all the time. The lawn in my hew rented property is ruined by the previous tenants dog.. the landlord won't replace it! And I don't blame him, but how 'fair' is that?



    Why not ask the landlord if you can fix the lawn and then enjoy it?

    Grass seed and elbow grease are all that's needed.

  • icon

    Why? It wasn't the landlords dog, and the LL didn't know about it before the deposit was paid.
    Human nature, he didn't think to check the lawn. He is cooperating, I have a good LL👍But 'elbow grease'? And lawn seed? I'm a professional landscaper. The dog has killed the grass AND the soil. The answer is re-turfing, not 'elbow grease'. The dog's uric acid has shifted the ph of the soul. Seed won't grow in it. He redecorated and re-carpeted for me. There's only so much you can expect. This is 2021. We should have moved away from keeping meat-eating animals in our own living space by now. I appreciate your suggestions, but the answer isn't insurance, lawn seed, redecorating or 'elbow grease'. The answer is people need to 'grow up' and stop treating animals as entertainment and stop feeding millions of them to our pets in the name of being 'animal lovers'. It's hypocrisy. What next? Pigs, cows, chickens, goats, because I have a 'right' to 'own' animals? No. I don't think so. It's academic anyway... two choices, a single bloke like me, no pets/kids/goats etc or a cat lady and her dog loving husband? Which would you have in your property?

  • icon

    Wow Styx - I had never thought that owning a cat and or a dog was not being an animal lover because as you point out animals are slaughtered to feed them!

    Another contradiction to live with .


    Time to create vegan cats and dogs, eh?

  • PossessionFriendUK PossessionFriend

    I rented a property in Wales to a Tenant who had a dog ( that I had met
    and ‘ interviewed ‘ ) and a Two month deposit was offered, because Wales have NOT put a limit on the amount of Deposit.

    Had the property been in England, it would be sorry, No pets because the Government had prevented me from mitigating against the ( very real and expensive ) risk.

    MHCLG don’t have a scooby. ! and sadly its Tenants suffering from many of their policies meted out on Landlords.


    Decent tenants are always the victim of the deeds of Shelter, MCLGH, Generation Rant etc who only help rogue tenants at everyone else's expense!

  • George Dawes

    This doesn’t take into consideration of the poor animal , stuffed into a high rise flat , no exercise , no fresh air , no garden

    Politicians make me sick , vote catching pond life

    PossessionFriendUK PossessionFriend

    Yes George, but pond-life don't claim as much ' hooky ' expenses
    ( and are useful to the environment )


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