Landlords worried about pets and eviction changes in reforms

Leaders Romans Group lettings boss Allison Thompson says landlords are adopting a ‘wait and see’ attitude as implementation of the Renters (Reform) Bill edges ever closer.

Allison Thompson, Leaders Romans Group pets estate agency

More landlords are worried that tenants might request to keep a pet after the introduction of the Renters (Reform) Bill rather than the abolition of Section 21, research from Leaders Romans Group (LRG) reveals.

Over half (56%) of landlords said that the change regarding pets would be negative while 54% said that the abolition of Section 21 would have a negative impact.

Graphs from LRG showing sentiment around abolition of Section 21 and tenants keeping a pet.

Six out of 10 landlords (62%) surveyed by LRG said they intend to maintain or increase their portfolio over the next year despite the pending impact of the Renters (Reform) Bill with just over half (55%) saying that they didn’t plan to change their investment strategy.


Most landlords explained that their approach to property investment was long-term and that they would not rush to leave the private rented sector.

Landlords did see some positives in the draft legislation with six out of 10 (63%) saying that easier repossession if a tenant is at fault was welcome and just over half (52%) supporting the introduction of an ombudsman.

The so-called ‘landlord exodus’ is being overstated.”

Allison Thompson (main picture), LRG National Lettings Managing Director, says: “Although there are some substantial changes in the private rented sector, both political and financial, the so-called ‘landlord exodus’ is being overstated.

“Yes, there are some significant issues with the Renters (Reform) Bill but LRG and others have been actively involved in shaping this legislation so that it is fairer on landlords – who after all, are the mainstay of the property industry and depended upon by Government to provide homes to some of those most in need.”


She adds: “As local authority housing waiting lists continue to increase, I hope that Government will reflect on landlords’ vital role and take their views into account as the legislation passes through Parliament.”

LRG, which includes the brands AcornGibbs GillespieHose Rhodes DicksonJohn PayneLangford Russell, LeadersNorthfieldsPorticoRomans and Scott Fraser carried out the research among 630 landlords in March 2024.

The Neg revealed last week that PayProp UK boss Neil Cobbold believed last-minute amendments to the Renters (Reform) Bill designed to appease some Tory backbenchers will make ‘little material difference’ to the majority of landlords or tenants.


  1. I regard S21 and pets as equally damaging. Landlords are really going to struggle as the courts have time and again shown themselves to be biased in favour of tenants: banning landlords from evictions over the tiniest details, allowing cases to be deferred again and again when tenants fail to attend hearings, awarding derisory repayments amounts when CCJs are awarded, failing to punish tenants time and time again for their misbehaviour or outright wanton damage, for example by allowing them to claim they are self-employed, so there is no method of debt recovery via attachment of earnings. Of course the result of a rubbish court system – still not established – means that as soon as a landlord has the misfortune to have a terrible tenant, they are simply going to leave the sector because they cannot get redress for bad debts.

    Pets too are going to be a nightmare – disputed damage bills at every turn from urine, faeces, animal hair and dirt, anti-social behaviour by pets barking, yowling and so on – and carpets and furniture trashed with hair. :Landlords won’t be able to ask for extra deposits, so will be dependent on insurance policies, on which there are bound to be endless exclusion clauses and the landlord will always be left out of pocket, with a compromised property – because as I know from personal experience (my wife is allergic to animal fur and lint), no matter how high-quality the cleaning is supposed to be, people with allergies can almost always detect when there’s been an animal in a house. And how is the poor landlord meant to navigate pets in HMOs? If a prospective tenant moves in a pet cat, what about the other members of the houseshare, who may hate cats, suffer from asthma or other lung or skin conditions, or object to the horrible animal’s behaviour? Are their views meant to be just ignored?

  2. Well we’ve seen quite a lot leave the market already most citing an incoming Labour government and the continued despising of landlords by the current clown show; those with one or two houses rented out are mainly selling, stating there are “better investments with less agro”; and who can blame them. Watch rental prices carry on up.

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