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Most pet-friendly places to rent – and tips for lockdown pet-owner tenants

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Owning a pet became a growing trend during the past year as people looked to combat the stress of successive lockdowns with the help of a furry friend.

But for those who don’t own their home, pets can cause a problem when the time comes to move, as landlords are not often animal lovers.

There may be specific clauses in many tenancy agreements against keeping pets, but it is still possible to track down pet-friendly properties.

We take a look at what pet owners can do, the most pet-friendly locations according to a letting agent report, and spoke to tenant, Letitia Randell, about her experience of successfully renting a pretty flat in London despite owning two dogs.

Lettings agency Mushroom analysed the most pet-friendly cities by calculating the percentages of rental properties that allow pets in cities across Britain

Lettings agency Mushroom analysed the most pet-friendly cities by calculating the percentages of rental properties that allow pets in cities across Britain

A new model tenancy agreement was published by the Government earlier this year, which tried to make life easier for animal lovers. 

main change in the Government’s template tenancy agreement is the removal of restrictions on tenants with pets.

Letitia Randell with one of her two dogs that she shares the flat with in Little Venice

Letitia Randell with one of her two dogs that she shares the flat with in Little Venice

The Government introduced this to encourage landlords to accept tenants with pets. However, in reality the template is just that – and landlords are not compelled to use the template.

But pet owners can try to encourage landlords and agents to be more open-minded and shouldn’t be disheartened, as it is possible to find good places to let. 

Dog owner Ms Randell rented the ground floor apartment with a private patio in London’s Little Venice. She declined to say how much she pays in rent, but the price includes council tax, water and electricity.

It was let by a private landlord – who preferred to be known only as Joel – via lettings agents Savills. 

She said: ‘I had been searching for a flat to rent where I could live with my two dogs, Esme and Guiness, for a while and was quite open in terms of the area. 

‘I tended to find that where a landlord was open to a tenant having pets, often the accommodation wasn’t what I was looking for. 

‘I was really pleased to find where I’m living now as it didn’t feel like I was having to make a compromise because I have dogs. Not only is it a lovely flat, but the neighbourhood in Little Venice is brilliant too.’

One of Letitia Randell's two dogs (which are both cocker spaniel cross huskies)

One of Letitia Randell’s two dogs (which are both cocker spaniel cross huskies)

The ground floor apartment in London's Little Venice, which was rented by Letitia Randell - with her two dogs - via Savills

The ground floor apartment in London’s Little Venice, which was rented by Letitia Randell – with her two dogs – via Savills

Some places appear to be more favourable than others when it comes to tenants with pets seeking a place to rent.

Lettings agency Mashroom analysed the most pet-friendly cities this month – collecting data between May 10 and May 14 – by calculating the percentage of rental properties that allow pets in cities across Britain. 

The number one slot was occupied by Glasgow, where more than half of rental homes – at 50.2 per cent – allow a pet.

It is followed by another Scottish city – Edinburgh – where almost half of homes were listed as pet friendly at 49.7 per cent, and Cambridge at 44.4 per cent.

By contrast, Sheffield has only 12.7 per cent of rental properties currently listed as pet friendly. Other cities on the list include Bristol, Cardiff and Liverpool. 

How to find properties or convince landlords or agents to take pets

What can tenants do to improve their chances of being able to rent a property that allows their pets? 

Suggestions include looking at property portals that display pet-friendly rentals and getting a ‘pet reference’ from a past landlord. 

Sarah Tinsley, of the rental homes operator Quintain Living, says it is important that pets are part of today’s rental experience. 

She said: ‘We believe that being pet-friendly is more than merely allowing residents to keep pets. It’s about welcoming pets as part of our community and creating facilities that enhance the living experience for everyone, on two legs and four.’

Here are some tips on how to find properties or convince landlords or agents to take pets:  

1. Use a portal which displays pet friendly rentals. Zoopla, for example, has a ‘pets allowed’ filter in it’s letting search.

2. Get a pet reference. Ask past landlords and letting agents for a written reference for your pet and their behaviour in the property.

3. Write a pet CV. Include key medical details about your pet such as vaccinations and micro chipping as well as a local vet contact who could provide additional references.

4. Offer a Meet & Greet. Offer to meet the landlord or letting agent with your pet in advance so they can get to know them and their character.

5. Explore the breed of pet-friendly landlords such as Quintain Living. All its homes are pet friendly and feature a range of four-legged amenities such as dog runs, bark parks and grooming salons.  

Ms Randell said that she loves her new flat and its Little Venice location and one of the positives for her new landlord is that she would like to stay for the forseeable future.

She said: ‘As well as lots of great restaurants and cafes, there’s plenty of green space and of course the canal, so it is a relaxed and peaceful setting but with the benefit of being close to central London, too. Now that I’m here, it’s definitely somewhere I’d love to stay long term.’

The landlord of the property, Joel, explained: ‘Generally, most things are fixable so when it came to renting out the apartment, I was open to tenants with a pet because I felt that any potential damage or wear and tear could be sorted if needed. 

‘The property let quickly for this reason. Obviously the area is perfect for dogs because there are so many great parks and open spaces nearby.’ 

A pet in the pretty interior of the rental flat in Little Venice was welcomed by the landlord

A pet in the pretty interior of the rental flat in Little Venice was welcomed by the landlord

The two-bedroom flat in Little Venice comes with a private patio and is close to many of the area's parks and open spaces

The two-bedroom flat in Little Venice comes with a private patio and is close to many of the area’s parks and open spaces

Parliament introduced the Animal Sentience Bill on Thursday, as the Government recognises the importance of pets in people’s lives – and it may be the case that in future more landlords are open to animal lovers’ needs.

Stepan Dobrovolskiy, of Mashroom, said: ‘We’re seeing more and more renters looking for properties that welcome pets, especially for graduates and young professionals. Pets have become a support system for many of us, and the government is beginning to recognise this. 

‘We recommend to landlords take into consideration the needs and requirements of current renters, as tenants are prioritising properties that prove to be pet friendly.’

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Sirius Real Estate sells London business park for €18.8m (GB)

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Sirius Real Estate has agreed to the sale of an asset in Camberwell, London, for €18.8m (£16m), representing a NIY of circa 2%. The property formed part of the portfolio Sirius acquired in November 2021 with its purchase of BizSpace, the leading provider of regional light industrial, workshop, studio and out of town office units across the UK. The sale price represents a 94% premium to the valuation at the time of Sirius’ acquisition of BizSpace.

 

The multi-tenanted business park, which comprises approximately 34,700ft² of industrial and office space is 91% occupied following a series of asset management measures delivered through the BizSpace platform. The sale is expected to complete in July 2022.

 

Commenting on the transaction, Andrew Coombs, Chief Executive Officer of Sirius Real Estate, said: “This disposal is further proof of the latent value in the BizSpace portfolio we acquired late last year, the price being significantly ahead of last September’s valuation on which our purchase was based, and the attractive sale follows our recent announcement that we had since improved like-for-like rental income across the portfolio by 7.5%. The sale will allow us to invest in new opportunities for BizSpace in the UK as we continue to build our acquisition pipeline. Bringing together the Sirius and BizSpace platforms, with a strengthened management team at BizSpace, is already delivering strong results and operational synergies that will enhance our UK portfolio.”

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Southwold beach hut which is 10ft wide with no running water or electricity up for sale for £250,000

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A beach hut in an upmarket seaside town which is famed for its celebrity visitors has gone on the market for a record £250,000.

The price is believed to be the highest ever to be asked in the UK for a hut which people are not allowed to sleep in – and is double the cost of a three bedroom terraced house just 10 miles away.

The hut, numbered 149 and called ‘Here’s Hoping’, measures 10ft 6ins wide and is in a prime position on the promenade in the Edwardian town of Southwold, Suffolk.

The resort has always been a popular retreat for well-heeled Londoners and celebrities including Chris Evans, Michael Palin, Stephen Fry, Rowan Atkinson and Richard Curtis.

Beach huts on the south coast can be more expensive with selling prices for some in Dorset exceeding £500,000.

But the huts in Southwold, which have no electricity or running water, are subject to strict local by-laws which ban anyone from sleeping overnight.

A beach hut called 'Here's Hoping', pictured, which sits on the promenade of the upmarket seaside town Southwold in Suffolk, Doset, famed for its celebrity visitors, has gone on the market for a record £250,000

A beach hut called ‘Here’s Hoping’, pictured, which sits on the promenade of the upmarket seaside town Southwold in Suffolk, Doset, famed for its celebrity visitors, has gone on the market for a record £250,000

The price is believed to be the highest ever to be asked in the UK for a hut which people are not allowed to sleep in. The hut, called 'Here's Hoping' and numbered 149, measures 10ft 6ins wide and is in a prime position on the promenade in the Edwardian town

The price is believed to be the highest ever to be asked in the UK for a hut which people are not allowed to sleep in. The hut, called ‘Here’s Hoping’ and numbered 149, measures 10ft 6ins wide and is in a prime position on the promenade in the Edwardian town

The resort has always been a popular retreat for well-heeled Londoners and celebrities including Chris Evans, Michael Palin, Stephen Fry, Rowan Atkinson and Richard Curtis. Beach huts on the south coast can be more expensive with selling prices for some in Dorset exceeding £500,000

The resort has always been a popular retreat for well-heeled Londoners and celebrities including Chris Evans, Michael Palin, Stephen Fry, Rowan Atkinson and Richard Curtis. Beach huts on the south coast can be more expensive with selling prices for some in Dorset exceeding £500,000

The buyer will still have to pay annual ground rent of £998 and will only have 18 years left of a 30 year lease, although there will be an option to renew.

They will be able to enjoy spectacular views from a veranda overlooking the beach and the North Sea, while being just a short walk from pubs, restaurants and shops.

But just 10 miles away in Lowestoft, Suffolk, there are several homes up for sale, priced between £120,000 and £140,000.

But the huts in Southwold (pictured), which have no electricity or running water, are subject to strict local by-laws which ban anyone from sleeping overnight

But the huts in Southwold (pictured), which have no electricity or running water, are subject to strict local by-laws which ban anyone from sleeping overnight

Southwold beach (pictured) has always been a popular retreat for well-heeled Londoners and celebrities including Chris Evans, Michael Palin, Stephen Fry, Rowan Atkinson and Richard Curtis

Southwold beach (pictured) has always been a popular retreat for well-heeled Londoners and celebrities including Chris Evans, Michael Palin, Stephen Fry, Rowan Atkinson and Richard Curtis

Huts in the best locations within Southwold, which is famed for its Adnams brewery, pier and lighthouse, are rarely on the market and some have been in the same family or generations

Huts in the best locations within Southwold, which is famed for its Adnams brewery, pier and lighthouse, are rarely on the market and some have been in the same family or generations

Several semi-detached homes in the area offer three bedrooms, one bathroom and two reception rooms, and is located 0.1 miles away from Lowestoft railway station.

Another property on the market is a £90,000, three-bed semi-detached bungalow at Broadlands Park and Marina in Lowestoft which has a garden, one bathroom and one living room.

The listing for the beach hut boasts that it has ‘glazed double folding doors’ and ‘a number of storage cupboards’.

The previous highest price asked for one of Southwold’s 300 beach huts was £150,000 in September 2018.

Prices have soared since then as property prices have continued to increase and the demand for staycation breaks following the Covid epidemic has boomed.

Huts in the best locations within Southwold, which is famed for its Adnams brewery, pier and lighthouse, are rarely on the market and some have been in the same family or generations.

Several semi-detached homes in the area offer three bedrooms, one bathroom and two reception rooms, and is located 0.1 miles away from Lowestoft railway station

Several semi-detached homes in the area offer three bedrooms, one bathroom and two reception rooms, and is located 0.1 miles away from Lowestoft railway station

Many are rented out for around £600 a week to visitors who flock to the town.

The latest asking price is more than double the price of a three bedroom terrace house on the market for £110,000 around ten miles away in Lowestoft, Suffolk.

More than half the properties in Southwold are second homes and the full-time population is now below 1,000, putting extra strain on local services.

Earlier this year, councillors unveiled plans to try and stem the number of second homes in the town and make more affordable housing possible for local people.

A spokesperson for estate agent Flick & Son, which is selling the hut, said: ‘I am sure it will go very quickly.

‘There is a high demand for huts and we expect there will be a bidding war in the end.’

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EU will retaliate to any unilateral action on NI protocol, Coveney warns

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British prime minister Boris Johnson has been warned of the consequences of unilateral action on the Northern Ireland protocol, including the prospect of “retaliatory” action from Europe.

On the eve of Mr Johnson’s visit to Belfast, the Government and Sinn Féin said moves to disapply parts of the protocol risked damaging east-west relations.

Minister for Foreign Affairs Simon Coveney spoke of a “landing zone” for negotiations and indicated that the European Union was willing to make adjustments through “partnership and dialogue” due to what he said were “legitimate concerns” within unionism about the operation of the protocol.

However, he also said that if London moved unilaterally it would make matters “significantly worse” and that “then the EU will be forced to respond to that with some form of retaliatory action”.

Mr Coveney said it was not “helpful” to expand on what form that might take, but that a response “would be very negative”.

Taoiseach Micheál Martin said “there is a real and urgent obligation now” for Britain to engage with the European Commission “in a real and professional way to resolve issues that have been raised”.

Powersharing

Ahead of talks between Mr Johnson and Northern Irish political leaders aimed at restoring powersharing at Stormont, Sinn Féin’s northern leader Michelle O’Neill said unilateral action would “represent an appalling attack on the international rule of law”.

“Only through joint agreement with the EU can solutions to problems or concerns be resolved,” she said.

“I will be telling Boris Johnson that unilateral action deepens political instability and economic uncertainty and must not happen.”

Ms O’Neill is to meet Mr Martin in at Government Buildings Dublin on Monday morning ahead of her meeting with Mr Johnson.

Mr Coveney travels today to Brussels for a meeting of the EU Foreign Affairs Council and will later speak with EU negotiator Maros Sefcovic and British foreign secretary Liz Truss, who is expected to announce legislation on Tuesday that will unilaterally override central elements of the protocol.

Speaking to The Irish Times, Mr Coveney said Mr Sefcovic is open to making “significant progress” on the protocol.

“I believe there are solutions we could pursue and we can agree relatively quickly if there was an attitude to do so on both sides,” he said. “But we need a partner in London to do that, not a partner that is making threats of unilateral action.”

Envoy

The Minister also said he believes it is “likely” that US president Joe Biden will appoint an envoy to the North, saying the US administration is “extremely interested” in marking 25 years since the Belfast Agreement next year with “its institutions intact and functioning as they need to be”.

Mr Johnson is expected to affirm his commitment to the agreement and assert that he is not seeking to scrap the protocol. But Downing Street said ahead of his meetings with the North’s party leaders that he will not drop his government’s threat to unilaterally disapply parts of the protocol, which Mr Johnson agreed with the EU in 2019.

Downing Street said in a statement that Mr Johnson will tell party leaders that the door will always be open to “genuine dialogue” but that “there will be a necessity to act” and protect the Belfast Agreement if the EU does not change its position.

Writing in Monday’s Belfast Telegraph, Mr Johnson outlined that the protocol “has not been adapted to reflect the realities of the [Trade and Co-operation Agreement]”. He will signal that there is “without question a sensible landing spot in which everyone’s interests are protected”. However, he said that if the EU’s position does not change, “there will be a necessity to act”.


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