Landlords who try to ban our furbabies may actually be unlawful 82



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Legal experts in both Queensland and New South Wales have determined that landlords who don’t allow pets into rental properties are being unreasonable.

A ruling by the Queensland Civil and Administrative Tribunal has found by-laws which absolutely ban pets could be “oppressive and unreasonable”.

According to QCAT, pets should instead be dealt with by body corporates on a discretionary basis. This would allow landlords and tenants to negotiate about individual pet needs.

Meanwhile, the Tenants Union of NSW wants to end lease agreements which forbid pets altogether. The TUNSW has submitted a discussion paper that will be considered by state parliament later this year.

Keeping pets is “both a personal choice and personal responsibility”, says the TUNSW. “A person’s tenure can have no bearing on their ability to keep a pet responsibly”.

“Tenants, like anyone, are perfectly capable of keeping pets sensibly and responsibly. A prohibition against ‘No Pets’ terms in residential tenancy agreements is long overdue”.

The TUNSW has described how pet-owners often find it difficult to rent new properties. This can be a stressful experience, as many people treat their pets like family.

Older Australians arguably need their pets more than anyone, as our loved ones pass on and families grow up. So how can we ensure pet-owners are getting a fair go?

The TUNSW has suggested that “pet agreements” could protect new tenants and landlord alike.

Pet agreements might include repairing any animal-related damages, or agreeing to pay for professional carpet cleaning and fumigation.

These ideas have been welcomed by people online. As one person commented, “I would love to be able to have a small pet to keep me company”.

“However, the pet-friendly rentals available are so few and far between and also expensive. Changes do need to be made now!”

Have you found it difficult to rent with a pet? Are your pets like family? Share your thoughts about furbabies below:

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  1. Surely the owner of the property should have the final say in who it is rented to.

    2 REPLY
    • They can’t stop people having children, who are generally noisier and dirtier than dogs and cats.

  2. Emma Kate Kirsty. It’s only QLD and NSW as yet but at least there’s a little light at the end of the tunnel.

    5 REPLY
  3. I am facing eviction from a Churches of Christ care housing unit because of my dog Ruby, When I first spoke to my building manager about her , I was told there shouldnt be a problem, and as I knew of another dog like Ruby, a staffy, had been living in a unit block run by the same service, I didnt think there would be any issues. Long story short I did get her befor written permission was given for several reasons, She is a blessing to me and some of the other tenants, clean well trained never a bark out of her and my health has improved But 8 months later the final eviction notice been given to us!!!! Court is the next stage, Heres hoping IRuby and I get to stay!

    6 REPLY
    • Hope you win. I cant get a place because of my old dog who I refuse to give up. Id rather sleep on a park bench with her than live where she is not welcome !!!

    • It is her breed that they mostly object to, there are other dogs here, but none as clean or as quite or as loved as she is!Good luck to you in finding a place, may meet you under a bridge or a park bench if we get thrown out!

    • Maria Cosgrove Serafini Ash Me an my gal would love to meet you an your fur baby!! Save me a bench Lol !!!

    • Maria I hope you and Ruby win, people with little dogs probably wouldn’t be hassled, this is so narrow minded of the powers that be. Good luck.

  4. When I did rent for 12 yrs I wud not take on a place that said no pets….my pets are my world n need a fenced property to stay safe….there shud be more pet friendly rentals

  5. We had a rental property on the Gold Coast, and we allowed a small pet either cat or dog to be included in the rental agreement, the property was small so we did not really want anything too large. Our biggest problem was once that was on the agreement, the tenant could and did bring large dogs onto the property. We ended up spending thousands getting carpets replaced, and repairs. Some animal owners are very responsible but it’s the bad owners that have ruined it for everyone.

    10 REPLY
    • Barbara L Smith Yes, but one tenant in particular made sure she got her bond back by the real estate, who then we had to fight in court to get payment for the repairs, I could write a book about the experience.

    • Sometimes it is near impossible to get the smell out of the place. Also lawn end up with holes all over and it is very difficult to get them to repair it creates lots of cost to the owner and rental does not bring much return anyway unless you are someone who has lots.

      1 REPLY
      • Gosh I’ve had dogs all my life and not one of them has dug a hole!!!

    • Barbara if you see how much damage the “bad” ones do, and then put animal damage on top, bonds are but a small drop in the ocean of fixing the issues.

    • We just ban pets outright. Too many bad experiences and it costs a fortune in repairs and lost rent, getting the place fixed every time. Then of course there’s the incessant complaints from all the neighbours… Not worth the hastle! 🙁

    • Renting out valuable property is a minefield , with the poorest return imaginable. The bad tenants. Give everybody a bad time . Hence good tenants with pets are stuck in the same box

    • We good tenants should not have to suffer for the bad ones, if you have been renting for a long periods with animal the estate agent should know you and your animal if they are clean or not and should be able to give some kind of a reference if and when you have to rent through someone else.

    • I cant see what the difference between a small and large dog would be. I dont rent but have both a small and large dog and the small one is much more destructive than the large. Perhaps an extra bond would be the way to go to enable repairs etc for damages.

      1 REPLY
      • absolutely agree! It’s usually people who are unused to dogs that make the generalisation re large dogs being more destructive than small! I’ve had extremely sooky Irish Wolfhounds and Deerhounds who only want to sit on the lounge and adore me!! No destructiveness in those big doggies!!

  6. We have always allowed animals at rental property we have owned. The only problems we have had were because the tenants were slobs, the addition of a couple of animals may have contributed a bit more to the mayhem but not much. If the tenant is responsible they will ensure the animal does minimal damage. We have spent far more on replacing the grill pans for ovens that leave with the tenant than we ever have damage done by animals. One tenant replaced all the wire in a screen door the day they left as their cat left claw marks.

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