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Pets at rented property

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I hope this is the right forum and somebody can help me. I moved in with my girlfriend who rents about 6 months ago. She has a pet dog which she hadnt informed the agents about. They have been informed by a neighbour that she has a dog. They have called us in to speak to us.

What will the next steps be? We have been great tenants, been there for a year and have recently signed up for another year. I accept that we are at fault, but can we be evicted as a consequence? Will we lose deposits? Be accountable for that years rent? The contract wording is written below and I've heard that the OFT deems it unfair to blacket rule out pets. Hope somebody to help clarify our situation.

 

"the tenant agrees neither to keep any animals,birds,reptiles or rodents in or on the premises nor to allow his invited guests or visitors to do so.in breach of this cause to responsible for reasonable costs or rectification of any damage caused or for any appropiate de-infestationm,cleaning ,fumingation etc..required"

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Yes, you can be evicted as a consequence - however, the LL would have to issue a notice to you first and then issue court proceedings - all of which you'd have to pay for if they won in court (not guaranteed).

 

The biggest difficulty the LL has is that he/she may have a clause in their lease (if the property is leasehold), which indicates that no pets are allowed, hence if that is the case and you do not get rid of the pet, the LL is put in a difficult position since breaching their own lease might lead to forfeiture if the breach is not remedied. I am not saying this is the case, but the clause in your tenancy agreement may be there for a very valid reason.

 

Unless the pet has caused damage to the property then it's unlikely you'll lose the entire deposit, although you should expect to lose some of it for additional cleaning. No matter how clean someone thinks their pet is, they always leave a smell and fur behind! If you are evicted, you won't be expected to pay the whole year's rent - and if you have to move due to the pet, then the LL has to mitigate their losses. You are, however, clearly in breach of the tenancy agreement by having a pet - it's not unfair for a LL to choose to not have pets in their properties (and certainly many leases prohibit them without express permission from the freeholder).

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That is what I expected. Nothing has been said yet, and for all we know he could be fine with it. We have been perfect tenants, asking for 12 month contracts instead of 6 and not one late payment. He has even said to the agents how good we are and this was in the same conversation when they asked if we had a dog.

As far as damage, downstairs in laminate flooring with a big rug thats ours, so cleaning wont be an issue. They have done inspections and commented on how clean we were and thats why they were surprised we had a dog. Hopefully he will see thats she is not an issue and we can carry on as normal, I'm sure he doesnt want to lose a years tenancy and go through court etc. I will update when I know more.

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suggest you speak to the LL direct and offer by way of offsetting potential claims not covered by the existing deposit, a further amount, to be agreed, say £200? if this accepted, the contract will have to be amended and the deposit protected, more hassle for LL, so you could offer to pay for that as well.

You have to be fair, and you dont want to move.

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