tenant has more dogs

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  • tenant has more dogs

    Hi

    When my tenant and I signed the tenancy agreement back in November we agreed on a clause stating that they could bring their dog with them but any additional pets were only allowed with my written consent. I have just found out that they now have 2 cats as well as the agreed dog.
    I am also concerned about the general state they are keeping my property in.

    The agreement states :
    "The Tenant will keep the Property in good repair and condition and in good decorative order"

    Where do I stand on both counts and what are my best options?

    Regards

  • #2
    3 choices -
    1. Accept the cats and deduct any damages from deposit at end of tenancy
    2. Serve s8 notice under ground 12
    3. Serve s21 notice to expire at end of fixed term (min 2 months)

    For option 2, the judge would have to make a decision about the fairness of evicting someone because they had a couple of cats too many.

    Comment


    • #3
      thanks for that. What is ground 12 and how long would they have to vacate under S8 ground 12?

      Thank you

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by justcumbria View Post
        thanks for that. What is ground 12 and how long would they have to vacate under S8 ground 12?

        Thank you
        Ground 12 is...
        Any obligation of the tenancy (other than one related to the payment of rent) has been broken or not performed.
        You need to give 14 days notice on a s8 notice, and then you can try and claim possession via the pcol website - cost £100.

        Hearing will be in 4/6 weeks and, in the unlikely event that the judge thinks eviction is appropriate, he will give tenants a minimum of 14 days to go.

        Of course, just issuing the s8 notice (free) may be sufficient to prompt tenants into re-homing the cats - but people do get very attached to their pets.

        Comment


        • #5
          Seriously? You're seriously considering evicting someone over two cats?



          I believe they could be required to vacate within 14 days, IF you could convince a judge to grant possession.

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by asquithea View Post
            IF you could convince a judge to grant possession.
            Not likely though, is it!

            Comment


            • #7
              If the tenant pays the rent on time and is working, i.e. able to pay for any damage to the property, then I wouldn't dream of evicting.

              I would just claim costs for damage/professional cleaning at the end of the tenancy (and if T disputed it I would refuse deposit scheme adjudication and resolve via the courts).

              Comment


              • #8
                Thanks for your replies
                Asquithea - I was only wanting to know what my options were. It's always better to be approaching something with the correct information. I'll talk to the tenant and hopefully we can resolve.

                Thank you

                Comment


                • #9
                  Whilst some premises are clearly unsuitable for some pets and no one wants a constantly barking dog or a family of cats, I have to express surprise at the number of landlords who want to exclude pets. I mean it is not as if keeping pets is something anti-social and many perfectly respectable people keep pets. The average pet is not known to be a house destroyer.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Lawcruncher View Post
                    Whilst some premises are clearly unsuitable for some pets and no one wants a constantly barking dog or a family of cats, I have to express surprise at the number of landlords who want to exclude pets. I mean it is not as if keeping pets is something anti-social and many perfectly respectable people keep pets. The average pet is not known to be a house destroyer.
                    As a pet owner myself, I kind of agree, but there are circumstances where extra precautions might be wise. Cats and dogs can have 'accidents' which are almost impossible to effectively clean once soaked in. I recently had some LHA enants do this, and the downstairs carpets needed replacing and the upstairs ones cleaned/de-flea-d. No rent paid for last month, so deposit was useless and the chances of recovering/enforcing the carpet & cleaning costs through the court next to nil.

                    A declared (non caged) pet or a smoker, doubles the deposit requirement for me - although I did have one applicant who tried to convince me his Staffy would be permenantly caged!

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      I can think of one very strong reason for banning all pets: if it's a flat, L's own long-leasehold's covenants might ban every leaseholder from keeping pets. L's sub-lets must too; or else L could find his/her long-lease being threatened (by the freehold reversioner of the block of flats) with forfeiture.
                      JEFFREY SHAW, solicitor [and Topic Expert], Nether Edge Law*
                      1. Public advice is believed accurate, but I accept no legal responsibility except to direct-paying private clients.
                      2. Telephone advice: see http://www.landlordzone.co.uk/forums/showthread.php?t=34638.
                      3. For paid advice about conveyancing/leaseholds/L&T, contact me* and become a private client.
                      4. *- Contact info: click on my name (blue-highlight link).

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by jeffrey View Post
                        I can think of one very strong reason for banning all pets:
                        An outright ban is contrary to UTCCR guidelines. I agree though that a medium to large dog kept in a fifteenth floor flat is unreasonable. I think the OP had the right idea by inserting a special conditions clause in the AST to cover this.
                        The advice I give should not be construed as a definitive answer, and is without prejudice or liability. You are advised to consult a specialist solicitor or other person of equal legal standing.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by jeffrey View Post
                          I can think of one very strong reason for banning all pets: if it's a flat, L's own long-leasehold's covenants might ban every leaseholder from keeping pets. L's sub-lets must too; or else L could find his/her long-lease being threatened (by the freehold reversioner of the block of flats) with forfeiture.
                          That may well be the case and there may or may not be a sensible reason for the prohibition. I suppose many flats are not suitable for pets (ease of access to outside/lack of garden/noise, etc).

                          However Lawcruncher's point was about the general reluctance on the part of LLs to allow pets, including in houses where the premises are suitable.

                          I think that part of the problem is that whilst many dog and cat owners are responsible, a significant minority of of them seem to be under the illusion that their particular little Sweetheart-Poochykins or Fluffy-Kitty-Kissball can do no wrong, and they are apparently unable to see or smell the damage an untrained pet can inflict on carpets, furniture, etc. An example of this is the general inability of dog owners (tenants or otherwise) to realise that their houses smell of dog. Everyone else can smell it, but they cannot. Point out the scratches on the door and they'll say 'Oh but that's just his way of telling us he needs a wee. He's very intelligent'.

                          Add to this disabling of the senses, the fact that on average people do tend to take more care with their own possessions than with someone else's, and you begin to understand why LLs can be a bit reluctant.

                          Having said that, the longer the Ts propose to stay, the less reasonable it seems to ban them from having a pet.
                          'Pause you who read this, and think for a moment of the long chain of iron or gold, of thorns or flowers, that would never have bound you, but for the formation fo the first link on one memorable day'. Charles Dickens, Great Expectations

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Paul_f View Post
                            An outright ban is contrary to UTCCR guidelines.
                            1. There are no guidelines in the Regulations.
                            2. The guidelines are those of OFT.
                            3. They are not legally-binding; in fact, they have no effect at all, other than in terrorem.
                            4. The lease clause would have been individually-negotiated and so it would be binding no matter how supposedly 'unfair'.
                            JEFFREY SHAW, solicitor [and Topic Expert], Nether Edge Law*
                            1. Public advice is believed accurate, but I accept no legal responsibility except to direct-paying private clients.
                            2. Telephone advice: see http://www.landlordzone.co.uk/forums/showthread.php?t=34638.
                            3. For paid advice about conveyancing/leaseholds/L&T, contact me* and become a private client.
                            4. *- Contact info: click on my name (blue-highlight link).

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Even if not individually negotiated I cannot see how a prohibition on keeping pets is covered by any of the "indicative and non-exhaustive list of terms which may be regarded as unfair" set out in schedule 2 to the UTCCR or is otherwise covered by them.

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