Freehold and leasehold

Freehold and leasehold

Before you begin accepting pets in your property, it's important that you check the terms of your freehold or lease. Even though you own your property, there may be stipulations which would prevent you from giving permission for tenants to kept pets.

In England & Wales if you own a freehold property, there are usually no restrictions on keeping pets but some older freeholds may have restrictions on keeping animals.

If you own a leasehold property, it is important to study the terms of your lease to see whether there are any restrictions which would prevent you from accepting tenants with pets. If there are no such restrictions, you would normally be entitled as a private landlord to allow tenants to keep pets at your discretion.

If your lease does restrict or prohibit the keeping of pets, you may wish to approach the freeholder to see whether they would be willing to change the terms of your lease or give you permission in writing to allow pets in your property.

If you own a share of the freehold and all the other freeholders are in agreement, you can change the lease to allow pets. You would need to contact a solicitor for advice.

Scotland has ‘heritable property’ which is similar to the concept of freehold title in England & Wales. Although there are leasehold properties in Scotland, these tend to be less common than in other parts of the UK.

If you are concerned there may be restrictions preventing you renting a property to pet owners please seek advice from a property specialist or solicitor.