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What is the New Dogs and Domestic Animals Bill?

The new Dogs and Domestic Animals (Accommodation and Protection) Bill proposes a change in the law to ensure that pet owners can gain the right to live with their pet in any rented property so long as they can prove that they are responsible and caring pet owners. This bill was originally proposed by the Conservative MP Andrew Rosindell. It has been backed by a cross-party group of 11 other MPs. The bill has had its first reading in Parliament and is scheduled to have its second hearing on January 29th, 2021.

Why was this bill introduced?

Conservative MP Andrew Rosindell has stated that he was motivated to bring this bill before parliament because it is unfair for families to ‘be torn apart’, saying that for many people, separation from a beloved pet is no different to being separated from a sibling or parent. He also points to other European countries such as French, Belgium and Germany, which have all successfully outlawed rental discrimination against pet owners. 

Are the rules the same for all pets?

Different considerations would apply to different kinds of pets. For small animals including cats and rodents, a prospective tenant would simply need to get a certificate from a qualified vet before moving into the property. This certificate would state that the pet was healthy and that the tenant was a responsible, caring pet owner. 

For dogs, the requirements are somewhat more detailed. Dogs must fulfil a checklist that includes being vaccinated, being microchipped and responding to commands from their owner.

What do landlords think of this bill?

Some landlords are unhappy about this proposed bill. They argue that they and their tenants have already been impacted by the passing of The Tenant Fees Bill, which is a piece of legislation that caps deposits at costing no more than five weeks’ worth of rent. As many landlords previously protected themselves from pet-induced damage by increasing deposits for pet owners, this has led to many landlords refusing to rent to pet owners. Even among those who are still willing to accommodate tenants with pets, some landlords argue that this has already led to them having to put their rental prices up by between £25 and £50 a month.

How can property management software help keep everyone happy?

Property management software could provide an innovative solution to help keep landlords and pet owners happy. Property management software, such as that manufactured by InventoryBase, enables landlords and agents to remotely carry out property inspections. This means that landlords can easily keep an eye on the state of their properties, ensuring that no unwanted pet-induced damage has occurred. Whether you’re carrying out mid-tenancy or end-of-tenancy inspections, property management software will help to make your task easy.

Learning to use new software may seem like a daunting task, but you don’t need to be a technology expert to use property management software. InventoryBase’s software has been continually updated since its creation in 2012, meaning that you can be sure that it will be compatible with the latest technology. As well as this, it’s easy to access our online support services when you need them. 

Investing in new software to help you manage your properties doesn’t have to be an expensive matter. Our plans cost from as little as £10 per month.

We offer a 14-day free trial with no credit card needed.

It remains to be seen whether a compromise can be reached that bears in mind the needs of pet owners and the needs of landlords.