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Rentals with pets allowed: Demand for pet-friendly homes soars by 120% amid pandemic puppy boom

·1-min read
The renovated Royal Arsenal in Woolwich has a pet-friendly flat for £1,450 pcm. Through Open Rent. (Rightmove)
The renovated Royal Arsenal in Woolwich has a pet-friendly flat for £1,450 pcm. Through Open Rent. (Rightmove)

Some of us baked banana bread, others bought a jungle of succulent plants, and the enthusiasm for lockdown puppies saw the UK’s pet population surge by an estimated eight per cent since last spring.

As a result, pet friendliness has leaped to the top of renters’ wish lists when looking for a new home according to a new survey from Rightmove.

Demand for rental homes which will allow pets has jumped 120 per cent in the last year, followed by homes with balconies (up 70 per cent), parking spaces (up 48 per cent), and gardens (up 30 per cent).

Renters are also keen to find a home where bills are included. Demand for these all-in properties is up 38 per cent.

“The rise in pet ownership during the lockdown periods has been well documented, and we’re seeing this translate to the rental market,” said Tim Bannister, Rightmove’s director of property data.

“Becoming a pet owner is a long-term commitment, so what’s really interesting to consider is the impact this could have on the rental market in the future, and it’s a signal to landlords that if they were to consider allowing a well-behaved pet then it may open them up to a bigger pool of potential tenants.”

Property listing feature

Increase in demand July 2021 versus July 2020

Pet-friendly

120%

Balcony

70%

Parking

48%

Garden

39%

Bills included

48%

The Government is backing tenants’ rights to keep a pet. Last year it announced that the UK’s standard tenancy agreement would be rewritten to include permission to keep a furry friend at home.

However, experts warned that without legislation many landlords would simply continue using no-pet agreements.

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