We hear from lots of people interested in renting with pets. And it's no surprise: most Australian households have pets, and with more people renting long-term, more of us want the opportunity to have pets in a rental home.
If you rent in Queensland, here are answers to some common questions about renting with pets.
Can renters in Queensland have a pet?
In Queensland, you may keep a pet at the premises if your tenancy agreement states that pets are allowed. If the tenancy agreement does not state that pets are permitted, you will need to ask for permission from the landlord. The owner can place restrictions on the sort of pets.
Can my landlord refuse pets?
Sadly, your landlord can refuse pets in two ways.
When you apply for a property, it’s common for a landlord or agent to ask if you have pets. If you say yes, there is nothing to prevent discrimination against you on this basis.
If you are an existing tenant in a property, you can ask permission to have a pet but your landlord can refuse. There is no requirement for the refusal to be fair or reasonable.
If you have a disability recognized under the ‘Guide, Hearing and Assistance Dogs Act 2009’, you should not be discriminated against for having a guide dog or assistance dog. Unfortunately, it would be easy for a property manager to refuse an application from someone with a guide dog, and it would be difficult to demonstrate that discrimination had occurred.
Can you be evicted for having a pet in Queensland?
Even if you have a pet without permission, you can't be evicted just like that. You would first have the option to get rid of the pet. If you keep the pet, however, it could jeopardise your tenancy. If you are worried about potential eviction, we encourage you to get advice from Tenants Queensland.
Are pet bonds legal in Queensland?
In Queensland the law does not permit a landlord to charge a separate pet bond. If your landlord has done so, this is illegal. Again, you could contact Tenants Queensland for advice.
Pets make homes
We believe that people should be able to have good homes in the rental sector. And this means the chance to make a pet part of your family. The situation described above denies many renters the health benefits of bits, or it forces people to give up a pet when they are trying to find a new home. Some governments have changed laws so that landlords must at least have a fair reason to say no to pets. Sadly, Queensland hasn't done even that.