Our Pet Policy template:
- drafted by an expert UK solicitor
- supplements your tenancy agreement
- covers the specifics you need for permitting a pet at a residential property
- works perfectly with Legalo’s Assured Shorthold Tenancy Agreement
How Does It Work?
If as a landlord you agree to the tenant’s having a pet, then it is sensible to use our Pet Policy template to create your own pet policy. This will clearly establish what you expect from tenants, with regards to their pet, during their tenancy. Our pet policy template is a more detailed supplement to a residential tenancy agreement, so it naturally focusses just on the issues regarding the tenant’s having a pet at the rented property.
Amending your tenancy agreement
If you’ve made the decision to rent a property to a tenant who has a pet, then it’s important to add a specific clause about the pet to the tenancy agreement that you will require them to sign. The guide includes a suitable clause to refer to the landlord’s granting permission for a pet at the property.
Pets can cause additional mess or damage. Because of this, you may also wish to include a clause about how this applies to:
- the Tenant’s end-of-tenancy cleaning; and
- the tenant’s duty to keep the property in good repair and cover any damage caused by the pet.
The guide includes wording for a suitable clause about this and a provision to introduce the separate pet policy.
(NB Our Assured Shorthold Tenancy Agreement template already includes such clauses.)
Due to this, in practical terms you will need:
- a clear acknowledgement from the tenant that the property was clean to a professional standard at the start of the tenancy (an inventory with a schedule of condition should cover this);
- interim inspections to check up on the premises’ condition; and
- a careful inspection at the end of the tenancy for cleanliness and damage.
Deposit for pet damage
Unfortunately, while you might want to take a larger deposit from a tenant in case of additional damage being caused by the pet, this is not possible for tenancy agreements in England and Wales. This is because of the restrictions on the size of deposits under the Tenant Fees Act 2019 (click on the link for the government’s guidance notes on the Act).
As of 1st June 2019, landlords of residential properties are only be able to take as a tenancy deposit:
- a maximum of 5 weeks’ rent if the annual rent is under £50,000; or
- 6 weeks’ rent in the rare cases where the annual rent is £50,000 or higher.
Guide to clauses in this Pet Policy template
Below we have printed some of the key provisions from the guide to completing your pet policy:
Fill out the tenant’s, property and pet’s details at the top.
Feel free to alter or delete any clause that you wish to.
Clause 2 refers to a pet information form, which is at the end of the pet policy template. So the tenant should fill one in for each pet the landlord has given permission to be there.
As explained above, in relation to clause 5, we recommend regular inspection of the premises. This is because you need to check the tenant is complying and the pet is not damaging the property or getting it dirty.
Note in clause 13 that you cannot as landlord have a professional clean done and simply charge it to the tenant. However, you can if the tenant has failed to clean to a professional standard when he or she leaves. This is because arbitrary additional charges levied on tenants are now severely curtailed by the Tenants Fees Act 2019. Also note that the property must have been already clean to a professional standard at the start of the tenancy for your to be able to insist on its being cleaned to the same standard at the end.
The remainder of the guide explains how to sign the policy validly as a supplement to your tenancy agreement and includes a simple pet information form to fill in. (You will receive the full written guide when you buy the template.)