Smokers and pet owners are finding that landlords are raising the barriers to their being taken on as tenants, says Tony Clarke, Managing Director of the Rawson Property Group. “There was a time when smokers and those with pets could come to an agreement with their landlord or agent but that is now often no longer the case.”
“Attitudes towards such tenants have hardened and it seems they will continue to do so”, says Clarke. The reason for this, in the case of smokers, is that smoke odours can and do penetrate carpets, curtains, furniture and even wall surfaces – and are very hard to eradicate. In some cases, smoke has even changed the colour of painted walls or furniture.
Similarly, says Clarke, pet urine or excrement leave smells which are extremely hard to eliminate and which can make a home totally unrentable. In many cases, tenants leaving at the end of their lease have had to accept that their entire deposit (usually equal to two months’ rent these days) will be taken by the landlord to pay for the replacement carpets, curtains and even a complete repaint.
“By law, the landlord has the right to reinstate the property, at the tenant’s expense, to the state it was in when the tenant first took occupation. This has to be borne in mind”, said Clarke. Asked if smoking tenants could not make a deal with the landlord to smoke only on the balcony (if there is one) or outside, Clarke said that he personally would probably accept such an arrangement but he feels many landlords would not.
This article “Landlords’ Increasing Aversion To Smokers And Certain Pet Owners” was issued by The Rawson Property Group – http://www.rawson.co.za/