New landlord doesn't allow pets -- can they force me to get rid of my cat?!

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New landlord doesn't allow pets -- can they force me to get rid of my cat?!

Post by noth1ngness » Wed Jan 30, 2019 1:17 pm

In my tenancy agreement contract with my current landlord, it says that pets are allowed as long as tenants seek permission. My landlord told me they don't care one way or the other if I get a cat or not, so this month I was finally going to be adopting one. However, I was just told today that within 4 months, my building will be taken over by a new letting company, and these new people don't want to allow pets at all. My current landlord has told me that my cat might be a problem to these new landlords, even though it's not a problem for him. He also told me that he's already mentioned to these new landlords that no one in the building has any pets. He then told me that he won't let the new landlords know about my cat, that he's willing to pretend that he didn't know about it.

So -- if I do adopt a cat this month, once my landlord changes over to this new letting company, will they have the legal right to tell me to get rid of my cat??? I desperately want to adopt a cat this month and I absolutely do not want to move because I love my flat. But I don't want to be told in 4 months time that I need to get rid of my cat. I could never give up a pet like that. Would they even be legally allowed to demand that of me?

Any insights at all into the laws around this would be so appreciated xx I'm having trouble getting any answers through google xx

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Re: New landlord doesn't allow pets -- can they force me to get rid of my cat?!

Post by Lilith » Thu Jan 31, 2019 11:32 am

Hi, I'm very sorry to hear this, and though I'm afraid I can't supply any concrete legal advice, two options occur to me:

Firstly, the Citizens' Advice Bureau. If anyone can advise you on the legal stuff, they can.

Secondly, I've heard of a lot of landlords who've forbidden pets, but if tenants have made a special request, and offered to pay extra bond money, the landlords have agreed to their keeping a pet. It's worth trying.

Good luck and I do hope you get your cat.

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Re: New landlord doesn't allow pets -- can they force me to get rid of my cat?!

Post by Jayne1 » Sun Feb 03, 2019 6:14 am

You won’t be able to have a cat if the new landlords don’t want them you could always speak to the land lord and see if he would make an exception say you want to give a cat a loving home and explain things about why you want the cat I’m sure he would make an exception I think land lords think people with pets aren’t going to look after the property properly but that is not always true I’m sure things will work out for you

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Re: New landlord doesn't allow pets -- can they force me to get rid of my cat?!

Post by fjm » Sun Feb 03, 2019 8:43 am

As I understand it, it is the letting agency rather than the landlord that may be a problem. Can your landlord not give you permission that overrides the agency's conditions? It could be, of course, that the landlord is using the change of agency as a polite way of saying no to a cat, or that it is actually a new landlord taking over the property. I think you need to explore possibilities with the landlord.

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Re: New landlord doesn't allow pets -- can they force me to get rid of my cat?!

Post by Mayday21 » Fri Feb 08, 2019 11:09 pm

Hi the rescue organisation I’ve an involvement with asks for a landlord’s written agreement that cats are allowed. Unsure if the letting agency can dictate over the landlord. And of course if the holding is sold to anew landlord this may override any previous agreements. Think Lilith’s advice on contacting the Citizen’s Advice Bureau. We have a tenancy board for advice here. It’s a quandary especially if you want to give a little fur babe a loving home. Good luck.

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Re: New landlord doesn't allow pets -- can they force me to get rid of my cat?!

Post by Catotum » Sat Feb 09, 2019 3:37 pm

Try the CAB as a starting point. I'd agree that if the ownership of the property remains the same, then writing to the owner directly, explaining the situation & pointing out that you have pre-existing permission (not to mention a pre-existing cat) might work. The same, really, if there is a new owner. CAB might explain how you can find out who the owner is as well as the general legal picture. Your local library will know how you can contact CAB - indeed, they might have a CAB person visiting.

I know of a similar situation, although the flats in question were owned leasehold, with a managing agency appointed. Lot of people kept cats, regardless of them being prohibited but no-one had a problem. When I spoke to the agents on behalf of an aged relative, they said the owner had insisted on the clause but they were not going to pursue the issue. In your position I would follow up as I've described. You can't lose by it.

IF all else fails & eventually you are hounded (excuse the expression) &/or threatened with termination of your rental agreement, write & say you will ask the local press for help. They might change their minds at that point because adverse publicity would have a negative effect on their business. Go to the press IF all else fails - they'd love a story like that. It should only be the last resort, however, as too soon & you might bring down a world of trouble, which you do not want. Ask - threaten - expose. But do a lot of asking in a sweet voice first.

Keep copies of all correspondence, emails & notes of phone calls, including date & time.

Good luck.

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Re: New landlord doesn't allow pets -- can they force me to get rid of my cat?!

Post by booktigger » Mon Feb 11, 2019 6:45 pm

A local rescue has just taken in 5 cats due to a landlord change and new landlord refusing, giving owners a limited time to rehome (or presumably move).

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