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Pet House

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Australian’s love their pets. Pets outnumber humans by a ratio of 3:2 with over 60% of households owning one or more. This begs a tricky question for landlords, do you allow tenants to keep them?

In Victoria there are no specific tenancy laws governing the possession of pets. However, landlords can negotiate further provisions for tenants with pets. These may include:

· Pet references from previous landlords

· An additional ‘pet’ bond or an increase in the standard bond

· More frequent inspections until its established that the pet is not causing any damage

· The tenant having the property professionally treated, namely carpets, every six months as well as at the end of the lease

If a tenant’s pet does cause damage to a property or is a nuisance to neighbours or other residents, a landlord may issue the tenant with a notice advising immediate action i.e. permanent removal of the pet and repairing any damage.

Pets in apartment complexes are generally not permitted without the written permission of the owners’ corporation. The owners’ corporation may grant permission although certain conditions almost always apply. For example, a dog may need to be on a lead when on common property.

A common sense approach seems to work best when it comes to pets and rental properties. Outcomes can be extremely positive especially when the tenants have been properly screened.

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