Nearly one-third of pet-owning renters have been hiding their animals from landlords for more than three years, according to new research by build to rent giant Quintain Living.
Its survey of 1,000 renters also found that 38% don’t feel comfortable asking for permission to keep a pet and 29% had difficulty finding a property to rent as a pet owner. Almost one in five pet owners (17%) have considered giving up their furry or feathered friend in order to find somewhere to live.
Birds were named as the most secretly kept pets in the UK – a staggering 50% of respondents who keep birds admitted hiding them from their landlord – with rabbits in second place (43%) and rather bizarrely, horses, with 33% of respondents.
Tenants find various ways of hiding their pets during landlord inspections, according to the buy-to-rent management firm: 35% take their pet for a walk, 32% ask a friend to pet-sit, 19% get neighbours to watch it, 15% hide it in a wardrobe or cupboard and 9% disguise it. As a result, 27% of landlords don’t know that their tenants keep pets.
Its research also found that Brighton is the most pet-friendly city in the UK – and Belfast is the least pet-friendly – with the most pet-friendly living in Norwich, Leeds and Sheffield. Plymouth, Cardiff and Edinburgh were at the other end of the scale.
Danielle Bayless (pictured), COO of Quintain Living, says: “For too long, renters have been excluded from keeping pets in their family homes, but, as we have proved, there is no reason why we cannot live in harmony together.
“We are proud to have been one of the first to offer pet-friendly homes to rent, as well as a host of pet-friendly amenities on site.”