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Direct Line Insurance : Nearly half of landlords welcome government move to end blanket bans on pets

04/19/2021 | 10:11am EDT
Nearly half of landlords welcome government move to end blanket bans on pets
4min read
19 Apr 2021
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  • Nearly half (45 per cent) of landlords welcome the government's new Model Tenancy Agreement, the recommended contract for use with tenants, which allows well-behaved pets in properties as the default position.
  • Less than a third (30 per cent) intend to object to tenants having pets in their properties. This is despite just seven per cent of UK landlords currently advertising pet-friendly properties.
  • Tenants have responded enthusiastically with 61 per cent saying it will result in fewer pet owners having to give up their pets, and half (49 per cent) believing fewer animals will be stuck in trusts or rescue centres.
  • The study also revealed one in six Brits who have rented a property have hidden a pet in the premises without the landlord's consent.

Nearly half of landlords welcome the government's new Model Tenancy Agreement, which establishes the right to have a well-behaved pet in a property as a default position where it is applied, according to new research from Direct Line business insurance.1

The Model Tenancy Agreement (MTA) is the government's recommended legal template for landlords to use with tenants. Previously landlords using the agreement were able to issue blanket bans on pets in their properties. Under changes announced by Housing Minister in January, the default position is that responsible tenants can keep well-behaved pets in rented properties wherever the MTA is applied. Landlords will now have to object in writing within 28 days of a written pet request from a tenant and provide a good reason.

Just 30 per cent of landlords say that they would submit an objection, a positive development for animal-loving tenants, since currently only seven per cent of landlords advertise pet-friendly properties despite more than half of Brits owning one.2

Tenants have responded enthusiastically to the change to the Model Tenancy Agreement, with 62 per cent saying that they are happy. When asked why:

  • Three in five (61 per cent) said this will result in fewer pet owners having to give up their pets because of restrictions implemented by landlords.
  • Half (49 per cent) say it will result in fewer animals being stuck in animal trusts or rescue centres.
  • 35 per cent stated that they already had pets so it will make it easier to find a property in the future.

Where it is applied, the new Model Tenancy Agreement should help prevent some tenants from breaking the rules. One in six Brits who have rented a property have hidden a pet in the premises without the landlord's consent. Younger tenants are the most likely to do this, with 25 per cent admitting to doing so.

Those who have kept a secret pet in their rented property did this because:

  • 44 per cent were concerned that their landlord would say no if they requested permission to keep a pet in their property.
  • More than one in five (22 per cent) said the property they wanted to move into didn't allow pets, but they felt the need to hide the truth because they already owned a pet.
  • 16 per cent forgot to check with the landlord before getting the pet and subsequently realised they weren't allowed to keep one.

Jamie Chaplin, Landlord Business Manager at Direct Line, commented:

'The new Model Tenancy Agreement brings good news for animal-loving tenants, with responsible owners able to keep well-behaved pets in rented properties wherever the government's recommended legal template is in use.

'And with a majority of landlords stating that they do not intend to submit an objection under the terms of the new Model Tenancy Agreement, it looks like more pet owners can rent properties with furry friends without worrying about breaching their tenancy agreement - as long as they are well-behaved!'


Notes to Editors

  1. Survey conducted by Opinium of 2,007 nationally representative UK adults on 16th- 19th February 2021.
  2. Survey conducted by Opinium of 200 multi-property landlords on 8th- 11th February 2021.
  3. https://www.gov.uk/government/news/new-standard-tenancy-agreement-to-help-renters-with-well-behaved-pets

For further information please contact:

Direct Line Group
Unni Henry
Senior PR Consultant
Email: [email protected]

Michael Hindmarsh
Account Director
Email: [email protected]

About Direct Line business insurance

Launched in 2007 Direct Line business insurance now has over half a million customer policies, providing a flexible range of insurance products for the landlord, van and small business sectors.

Direct Line business insurance policies are underwritten by U K Insurance Limited, Registered office: The Wharf, Neville Street, Leeds LS1 4AZ. Registered in England and Wales No 1179980. U K Insurance Limited is authorised by the Prudential Regulation Authority and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority and the Prudential Regulation Authority.

Direct Line business insurance and U K Insurance limited are both part of Direct Line Insurance Group plc.

Customers can find out more about Direct Line business insurance products or get a quote by calling 0345 301 4827 or visiting https://www.directlineforbusiness.co.uk


Direct Line Insurance Group plc published this content on 19 April 2021 and is solely responsible for the information contained therein. Distributed by Public, unedited and unaltered, on 19 April 2021 14:10:02 UTC.

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