Don’t believe the hype, the Tories are not making landlords accept pets

Landlords will still be able to ban pets.

Across the UK, hundreds of thousands of landlords are forcing tenants to give up their pets in order to find somewhere to live.

According to the Dogs Trust, 78% of pet owners have experienced difficulty in finding accomodation that accepts pets.

While the Tories ignored this problem in their last manifesto, Labour promised to address it, stating: “We would consult with tenants and both social and private landlords so that tenants can keep pets as a default unless there is evidence that the animal is causing a nuisance, or its welfare is compromised.”

As Labour lost the election, they aren’t able to implement the policy but the Tories have taken up the issue…and then come up with a solution so weak it’s meaningless so as not to inconvenience landlords.

The government will alter the ‘Model Tenancy Agreement’, which is a template designed to be used by landlords for their contracts with tenants, so that it allows pets.

This got an uncritical ‘exclusive’ write-up by the Sun’s political editor Tom Newton Dunn and has now been shared over 13,000 times on Facebook with the majority of the comments positive.

The only problem is that changing the Model Tenancy Agreement is pointless – hardly any landlords use it. Even if they do, they can just change the bit about pets. Also, there’s no definition of what a “well-behaved pet” is.

So it’s not a “diktat”, as Tom Newton Dunn claims, it’s at best a tentative suggestion. Dunn has history for this kind of inaccuracy. He recently published a far-right conspiracy theory and deleted it without acknowledging his mistake.

Dunn does go on to point out the action is not legally binding, contradicting his earlier “diktat” claim, but says housing minister Robert Jenrick “has not ruled out” making it so. Around a quarter of Tory MPs at the last parliament were landlords themselves so this is unlikely to happen.

On Twitter, many people pointed out what a pointless policy this was.

Joe Lo is a co-editor of Left Foot Forward

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7 Responses to “Don’t believe the hype, the Tories are not making landlords accept pets”

  1. Dave Roberts

    If anything shows just how out of touch with reality this blog is this is it. With Labour just having suffered the worse electoral defeat since 1935 Jo Lo is concerned that the Tories are conning people into thinking that pets will be compulsory! I don’t believe it!

  2. Julia Gibb

    And yet the English continue to keep the Scots as pets, feeding us, paying for the roof over our heads and giving us free money. How can this disgraceful treatment of Scotland be allowed? Why is there not more free English money?

  3. Dave Roberts

    Bit over the top Julia. I have some very nice Scots friends. Totally unrelated but have a look at the racist site http://www.obv.org.uk and the lead article of Clive Lewis and twp leading racists Jesse Jackson and Simon Woolley. I’ll bet he regrets that photo op.

  4. Ronald Olden

    Labour Council landlords and Housing Associations also ban pets from certain properties, and nearly always require you to obtain permission to keep one where they are permitted.

    Landlords are entitled to determine who they rent their properties to, and they have to think of the terms of their own leases and the neighbours who might be adversely affected.

  5. Housing minister accused of being soft on rogue landlords is married to a landlord himself | Left Foot Forward

    […] accused of favouring landlords. For example, by opposing Labour’s rent control proposals, by failing to force landlords to allow pets in their rental properties and by only allocating £4m to a fund to tackle bad landlords across the whole of […]

  6. Patrick Newman

    Ronald – “Landlords are entitled to determine who they rent their properties to,” I see so it is OK for a landlord to display a sign which says “no blacks or gays”? You wanker!

  7. Housing minister accused of being soft on rogue landlords is married to a landlord himself – LeftInsider

    […] accused of favouring landlords. For example, by opposing Labour’s rent control proposals, by failing to force landlords to allow pets in their rental properties and by only allocating £4m to a fund to tackle bad landlords across the whole of […]

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