12.10.2020 11:24 am

Soaring Number of London Dog Owners with Pre & Post Lockdown Puppies

List your property as ‘pets considered’. Doesn’t mean that every pet is allowed

In life, personally and professionally, you need to adapt. The same can be said for London landlords. Post lockdown, the housing market has changed, unemployment in the Capital is rising and tenants are struggling to pay their monthly rent.

The Reasons Why The London Rental Market Is Changing

  • The equilibrium has swung from the landlord to the tenant. More properties to choose from.
  • Compared to other cities and parts of the country, London rents are becoming unaffordable.
  • Many tenants now working from home and need more space. Moving out of London makes financial sense.
  • Better quality of life for people and their families living outside the Capital.
  • No longer commuting to the office or is limited. No reason to stay in current property.
  • Save on transport costs.
  • Be able to spend more time with the family.
  • There are a lot of empty new build London properties, where investor landlords will accept lower rents just to get in some income.
  • Having a long-term tenant even if their rent is a bit lower is better than trying to increase the rent and risk losing them.
  • A lot of tenants are protected under the Government scheme who have lost their jobs and cannot afford to pay the rent. Here is an interesting article from The Daily Telegraph which outlines these points.

Pets Lets is a pet friendly London property portal where landlords and agents can upload their properties for free. Tenants with pets can register and message landlords direct. We also offer pet-friendly relocation and viewing services.

The Pros of Pet-Friendly Letting

What are the many benefits of letting to tenants with pets, mostly dogs and cats?

  • Just walking on the streets, parks and commons, it is hard to miss a large increase of people with their new puppies which means a bigger ‘pool’ of potential tenants.
  • It can be said with puppy prices increasing by over 100%, that this influx of new dog owners are affluent and more responsible.
  • A survey by Dogs Trust revealed that 78% of dog owners have struggled to find somewhere to pet-friendly rentals, with 54% never finding something.
  • Only 15% of London landlords are pet-friendly. Landlords can beat the local competition by letting to people with pets. All about supply and demand.
  • All landlords prefer to avoid an expensive void period. Tenants with pets stay longer and because it is difficult to relocate in London with a pet, they stay longer and are keen to look after the property.

Addressing Issues with Pet-Friendly Rentals

  • By making your property pet-friendly, you ‘Open your Doors’ to a much higher number of responsible tenants.
  • By listing your property as ‘pets considered’, you as the landlord do not have to accept any pet. It might be that you would prefer a ‘small dog’ or meet the tenant(s) and their pet before agreeing to the rental. Some landlords stipulate a cat or a dog.
  • Like any tenancy there are risks. Children damage properties with crayons and paints, people spill drinks such as red wine, vape and usual wear and tear. A dog friendly rental is a no bigger risk.
  • Always ask for a reference from a previous landlord or a Vet. A Pet CV is not uncommon as it gives all the information including up to date treatments.
  • Properties can be professionally cleaned, so allergies for future tenants is a minimal risk.
  • Look at Barket Place. There are courses where tenants can train their dogs to bark less and be more considerate to neighbours.

Adverse Effect of 2019 Tenants Fees Act

  • Deposits are now capped to 5 weeks. Limits the amount to cover damage to the property.
  • You can no longer insist on an end of tenancy clean. This relates to all tenants. Pet owners tend to be the most responsible.

    Pet Proof Your Property

  • If you are really worried about your property, then pet proof it.
  • Remove breakable items, any rugs you like and if you have an expensive sofa, then cover it with a throw.
  • You could add a stairgate and insist no pets upstairs in the bedrooms.
  • You can also ask that the tenants have a cleaner during the tenancy.
  • Just like a tenants has requirements, the same can be said for a landlord.
  • If there is a garden, you could use astro turf to cut down on mud.
  • Insist on a break clause just in case it does not work out.

    Tenants with pets is the future. If there is no lease restriction on pets, then we advise landlords to consider pets. Look at it on a case by case basis. Meet the tenants with their dog. You will know very quickly whether it will work or not.

    Russell Hunt, is the Founder of Pets Lets, and a staunch advocate of making London a pet-friendlier place to live. We want to educate landlords on the benefits of letting to people with pets. Pets Lets is a London pet-friendly property portal where landlords can list for free. We also offer a pet-friendly relocation and viewing service.