Finding the ideal rental home can be a challenging enough procedure on its own, but the task is made even more challenging for parents and pet owners because they are frequently confronted with advertisements declaring that children and pets are not welcome. This makes the task especially challenging for parents and animal lovers.
These circumstances are non-negotiable, so even people who have house-trained pets or children who they argue are well-behaved or who are past the loud or destructive age are exempted from the beginning of their search.
Many folks believe that homeowners, who are inevitably safeguarding their assets, ought to have the right to choose who they rent to and the grounds on which they make these decisions. However, some families feel as though they have been treated unfairly by landholders who cease to cater for them because they have children in their household.
In spite of the fact that it is against the law to refuse tenants because they have children if there is no valid justification for doing so, property investment and legal experts seem to view this as a somewhat ambiguous situation. After all, what constitutes “unfair” or “fair” bias is up for debate and can be interpreted in a number of different ways.
“If a homeowner has a seventh-floor property with a veranda, he could proclaim it dangerous for children, and that might be a valid reason to restrict children,” says Marina Constas.
According to the Rental Housing Act, a homeowner “may well not unjustly discriminate” against potential tenants or their homes based on variables such as their ethnic background, sexual identity, pregnancy, marital status, sexual preference, color, age, disability, faith, moral compass, belief, heritage, language, and birth when marketing a property to be rented or negotiating lease agreements with potential tenants.
According to Constas, bias based on age isn’t as easily shown as discrimination based on gender, sexual preference, or race. Nevertheless, age discrimination does occur. In addition, she is under the impression that a judge would never interfere with the ability of a landlord to select the tenants of his or her choice.
“So, if a landlord has a spotless property with brand new wood floors and doesn’t want kids living inside it, he has the right to refuse renters with children,” she says, recognizing, however, that it is “quite complicated” when observed in light of the act.
Landlords want to ensure that they are taking on the least amount of risk possible because a rental home is, primarily, an investment. As a result, each specific instance must be evaluated based on the merits that are unique to it. According to specialists in the field of real estate, some landlords may be reluctant to rent to families with children in an established neighborhood where the volume of outside noise is strictly regulated by the laws of the body corporate.
The possibility of harm being caused to the house or the garden is another factor that makes landlords reluctant to rent to renters who have children or dogs. According to Constas, there are certain situations in which renters are vehement about the decisions they make, even though this is not a usual practice. According to her explanation, there is a presumption, whether justified or not, that children have the potential to add additional challenges to a community plan in situations where this language is stated. The most common complaint is a disturbance caused by the noise.
“Children who are not being watched by an adult have the potential to cause a disturbance on common property or to put other motorists in the scheme in risk if they are riding bicycles or skateboards.” “In one of the apartment complexes for which I worked, the children of the tenants walked around to each car in the garages and put sand in the fuel tanks of the vehicles. In yet another version, the children did it for fun by setting fire to the laundry hanging on the lines.
When deciding whether or not to allow tenants to have pets, a landlord may exercise his or her own discretion. For instance, a pet-friendly apartment building could easily make room for a small dog, but a landlord might view a candidate with two german shepherds, which are active dogs that require a significant amount of space, as a greater risk due to the possibility that the dogs will destroy a small garden. According to Constas, the concerns surrounding dogs are the most emotionally charged in community initiatives.
“Rental property owners are required to abide by the terms of the system. In the event that the guidelines for a particular scheme say that tenants are not authorized to have pets, the landlords would be required to include a stipulation to that effect in the rental agreement.
“Other homeowners in a complex may find your pet to be a source of irritation. The type of disturbance might range anywhere from dogs who bark excessively to cats that sneak into other people’s apartments and spray urine across the furniture. There have been incidents involving barking parrots as well as a bulldog whose owners insisted that the animal be “debarked.” In addition to this, we have witnessed cats clawing at motor cars and dogs running unrestrained on common land, which has caused homeowners severe trauma.
Anger is also directed toward owners who do not pick up after their pets when they stroll them through the gardens that are shared by multiple properties. “On a few extremely rare occasions, we have witnessed snakes escaping from their enclosures and slithering into pipes that are located on common land.”
However, there is a continuing increase in the amount of tenants looking for houses where they can bring their four-legged companions, which suggests that landlords who are willing to accommodate tenants’ dogs may have a benefit over those who are not. There have been a lot of recent real estate developments that are pet-friendly.
According to Catherine de Villiers, a rental advisor at Jawitz Homes, landlords that accept dogs broaden the reach of potential clients at a time when there are so many properties that are in competition with one another.
“Tenants seeking for accommodations that are pet-friendly are typically willing to agree to terms indicating that any damage done by pets will need to be repaired,” says the article.
According to Jacqui Savage, the national rentals manager for the Rawson Property Group, many rental units do not allow pets not because the properties themselves are unable to accommodate animals but rather because landlords have a negative perception of pets that live in their homes.
“The reality is that many people think of their animals as members of their family. If you don’t accept pets in your rental property, you could end up turning away a big part of the people who would otherwise be interested in renting from you.
“Adapting these restrictions is a terrific method to extend your tenant market and separate your property from the competitors. Of course, this adjustment should take place within reason and in accordance with the restrictions imposed by the body corporate.”