London-based agency Mountgrange Heritage has been supporting the Lets with Pets scheme since 2013. Observing the critical shortage of landlords in London willing to accept pets they launched their highly successful 'Pet-friendly lettings scheme', matching pet owners with a property which is right for them.
Since Mountgrange Heritage launched the scheme, 20-25% of their landlords have signed up, and this number is continuing to grow. Under the scheme, Mountgrange Heritage asks all landlords to consider accepting pets.
For those families who are relocating, the team not only help them find a home, but can also put them in touch with local partner businesses who can help care for the pet during the move and help it settle into its new area.
Landlord case study
Deirdre is not only one of Mountgrange Heritage's pet-friendly landlords but also a dog lover. Pictured here with her springer spaniel Fleck, she explains why landlords should consider accepting pets at their properties and what they should consider to make the experience a smooth one for all involved.
"I let 3 properties with Mountgrange Heritage and currently have a dog owner in one of them.
When I met the tenants, they were desperate to find somewhere suitable for their spaniel having come up with blanks in their search for a home. I believe all landlords should consider pets – if you don’t then you are missing out on a huge part of the market.
My advice to fellow landlords? Don’t be frightened! Meet the tenants and establish a relationship with them so they will be honest if any problems do arise. Meet the pet too before making a decision.
Just because you’re accepting of pets doesn’t mean you have to accept every pet into every property. Be pragmatic. I’ve never experienced any problems with pets at my properties and always get a larger deposit to cover any extra wear and tear. The tenants tend to be lovely people too!
As a landlord you will be asked this question more and more - more tenants these days come with pets. Pets are an integral part of the family, just like children!"
Tenant case study
Lynne is the proud owner of Coco, a Havanese, and rents her flat in Notting Hill through Mountgrange Heritage.
"Our search for a new flat took about 3 weeks and we viewed around 15 properties – that isn’t too long but it could have been quicker if the agents involved had checked with the landlords in advance to see if they were prepared to accept Coco. For the flats that didn’t accept dogs, it ended up being a waste of 3 peoples’ time.
Landlords don’t seem to like a flat rule; they feel that if they say yes to pets that they should accept all pets but it’s up to them; they can easily stipulate the type of animal, its size or even temperament. And they can meet the pet and decide for themselves then. Agents should also always make a point of asking landlords as often I think they just haven’t really considered it.
London is such a fantastic place for dog owners, with so many parks and open spaces. It’s just a shame that more flats and restaurants don’t accept them.’When we found our flat through Mountgrange Heritage we were really lucky – they have a selection of pet friendly flats on their website and this one has access to a communal garden where dogs are allowed off the lead. Not all of them do! We had to pay an extra deposit of a month’s rent to allow Coco but I totally understand that – it’s an insurance policy for the landlord against extra damage."
To find out more about Mountgrange Heritage, visit www.mountgrangeheritage.co.uk