Hi, now that the new pet laws for tenancies have been introduced to several states, with South Australia to follow, I would be interested to know what challenges people have found with these new laws and what processes you have changed to ensure protection for the landlords. We have a pet agreement of course but knowledge of other issues would be helpful. Look forward to your feedback.
Hi Sharon, Pets I find more and more are getting hidden at inspections, I completed an inspection at a property and I had a trade go and do some work at the same property 3 days later, and there was a snake in a glass cabinet, never have I seen this before, the tenants clearly hide it as it isn’t on their lease, and with Reptiles you need to have a special licence. It’s difficult to monitor, the best we can do is our best is to remind our landlord’s to have the appropriate landlord insurance.
It’s great to have suppliers onside and willing to let us know if they notice an issue with the property when they are working there - all about good relationships!
These laws have not yet been introduced in NZ, but there are noises about them coming, and a few worrying precedents have been set at tribunal, so it’s interesting to hear what challenges you have across the water
lots of challenges but that’s why I love my job
Although New Zealand doesn’t have these laws as @julie has pointed out , a local property manager recently found out at Tribunal that “there is no specific clause in the RTA that prevents tenants having a pet” so having a clause in the tenancy agreement not allowing them, is actually contracting outside the law. Scary stuff! Having a law would actually be preferable in these circumstances.
We contacted Tenancy Services to check whether our Pet Clause was acceptable or would be considered contracting outside of the Act. We were told that as allowing a pet could be considered an added benefit for the tenancy, a Pet Clause was acceptable and enforceable (for reasonable conditions! Always, a grey area on what is considered “reasonable”). Our clause specifies the pet that has been allowed, covers professional cleaning including carpets, and that the tenants must have adequate insurance to cover any damage caused by the pet.
One of our issues in QLD has been getting instructions from the owners within the legislated timeframe. We have reminders, texts, emails and voice calls all advising that if we don’t hear from the owners that we will approve the pet as long as it falls within council regulations.
Need to also be aware of those council regulations - Toowoomba has restrictions for cats and dogs depending on the square meters of the house and yard etc. This can often make the decision for us.