Submission: Keeping Pets in Rental Homes


A rental is not just a landlord’s investment property, it’s a person or family’s home. Renters should have the same rights as owner-occupiers to make simple choices to make the house they live in a home, including whether to adopt a pet.

There are a range of significant benefits to changing NSW residential tenancy laws to make it easier for renters to keep pets. These include, but are not limited to:

  • Animal welfare.
  • Physical and mental health and wellbeing benefits for people who keep pets.
  • Improving safety of people experiencing domestic and family violence who may otherwise delay leaving violence because of a concern for their animals’ safety. 

This Tenants' Union submission addresses the four questions outlined in the NSW Government’s Keeping Pets in Residential Tenancies Consultation Paper (‘the Paper’). In addition, the submission addresses several issues not explicitly raised in the Paper, including the impact of ‘no grounds’ evictions for renters with pets, the potential for discrimination against renters with pets when applying for a rental property, and our concerns about pet bonds. The submission makes some suggestions as to implementation of the changes we propose.

This submission is complemented by the Make Renting Fair community submission, which features contributions, stories and views from over 75 renters. These contributions were collected via a survey on the Tenants’ Union of NSW website, in Make Renting Fair campaign meetings, through various Tenants’ Union of NSW and Make Renting Fair social media channels, and at an in-person event at a dog park during the consultation period. Three of the renters’ contributions featured in the Make Renting Fair submission have been duplicated here. We encourage you to read this submission in conjunction with the Make Renting Fair campaign community submission.