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Government has ‘no plans’ for pets for lets concessions

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There are ‘no plans’ to amend tenant deposit rules to allow landlords to ask for additional amounts if they are to allow tenants to bring pets into their lets.

This was the message that junior housing minister Eddie Hughes gave when answering a Parliamentary question from tenants’ pets campaigner Andrew Rosindell. He asked what assessment the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government had made of the potential merits of adding pet deposits to the list of permitted payments in the Tenant Fees Act.

Hughes replied that the Act had indeed introduced a cap of five weeks’ rent for properties with an annual rent below £50,000, and banned most letting fees charged to tenants.

‘The five-week cap should be considered the maximum, rather than the default amount charged’, he said. ‘This approach should therefore accommodate private renters who wish to keep pets, without the need for a separate pet deposit. The Government has no plans at this time to amend the Tenant Fees Act 2019’.

Propertymark, the letting agents’ body, has put its weight behind the idea of allowing ‘per deposits’. It said that, despite the rebuff, it has not changed its mind.

‘The limitations that the Tenant Fees Act is imposing on the private rented sector is causing a reduced appetite for many who wish to rent out their property. The legislation, which became law in 2019, has had the unintended effect of making it much harder for landlords and agents to accept tenants with pets. This is because it outlaws tenants being charged an additional deposit for pets, and prevents them being required to take out pet insurance’, said Propertymark chief policy advisor Mark Hayward.