The laws for renting with a pet

A state-by-state guide to the laws around pet ownership and rental properties

The laws covering pets and rentals vary across the country. Here is a summary of the key characteristics of the laws in each state.

New South Wales  

There is no term in the Residential Tenancies Act 2010 that prohibits you from keeping a pet, or that requires you to ask for your landlord’s consent before you keep a pet. However, landlords can refuse to allow a tenant to keep a pet without providing a reason – unless it’s an assistance animal.

https://www.tenants.org.au/resource/guide-renting-pets-nsw

Higher bonds cannot be charged for tenants with pets or children.
https://www.fairtrading.nsw.gov.au/housing-and-property/renting/starting-a-tenancy#what

Pets are allowed in strata, unless the animal causes ‘unreasonable interference’ (for example, it is a dangerous or restricted dog). Also, your pet or pets must not disturb other residents in your scheme.

https://www.nsw.gov.au/housing-and-construction/strata/living/pets

 

Victoria  

A renter requesting approval for a pet will need to complete the consent form (Word, 583KB)

If a rental provider believes that it is reasonable to refuse consent to a pet living in the property, they will have to seek an order from VCAT to refuse the pet.

https://www.consumer.vic.gov.au/housing/renting/repairs-alterations-safety-and-pets/pets

 

Queensland  

Before renting a property, a tenant is required to seek permission from the property manager/owner to keep a pet.  There are clear rules in relation to renter’s requests for pets and a list of grounds a lessor, agent or provider can refuse your request.

https://www.rta.qld.gov.au/during-a-tenancy/living-in-the-property/renting-with-pets

Tenants should consider if the property is suitable for pets (e.g. enough room, fencing, pet doors) and if their pet could cause any damage to the property (e.g. torn screens or lawn damage). The issue of pest control should also be considered.

A separate pet bond cannot be charged.

For more information, visit https://tenantsqld.org.au/wp-content/uploads/2022/10/pets-TQ-2022-02.pdf

 

 

South Australia  

Allowing tenants to keep pets in private rental properties is at the discretion of property owners.  For strata or community title properties, approval is usually also required from the strata or community corporation.

If the landlord doesn’t accept pets in the property private renters might have to give up their pet.
For Landlords:
https://www.sa.gov.au/__data/assets/pdf_file/0014/335012/RentingWithPets_LandlordFactSheet.pdf

For Tenants:
https://www.sa.gov.au/__data/assets/pdf_file/0016/335005/RentingWithPets_TenantFactSheet.pdf
https://www.sa.gov.au/topics/housing/renting-and-letting/renting-privately/pets-in-private-rental-properties

 

Australian Capital Territory  

ACT law instructs tenants to seek permission to keep a pet at a rental property if the signed tenancy agreements requires them to do so. Landlords can only refuse consent on very specific grounds and with the approval of the ACT Civil and Administrative Tribunal. Pet bonds are not allowed but the tenant is responsible for any repairs or additional maintenance due to keeping a pet.

https://www.acat.act.gov.au/case-types/rental-disputes/pets-in-rental-properties

 

Western Australia  

Landlords in WA do not have to allow pets in their investment properties.

Also, a pet bond is optional but is permissible, with some conditions.

  • Only one pet bond per residential tenancy agreement can be charged, irrespective of how many pets are kept by the tenant at the premises.
  • If a tenant has already paid the lessor a pet bond in relation to a dog or cat that is kept at the premises, then no further pet bond can be sought in relation to other pets.
  • The pet bond is only to be applied towards the cost of fumigation of the premises, not for general cleaning or repair of damage caused by the pet. These latter expenses should be recovered from the security bond.

Major amendments to the Residential Tenancies Act 1987 are now being drafted after a review so that tenants will not have to choose between a rental property or their pets.

  • Tenants will be allowed to keep a pet or pets in rental premises in most cases.
  • If a landlord doesn't want pets in their property, they'll have to apply to the Commissioner for Consumer Protection and have a reasonable reason to do so.
  • Landlords will be able to place conditions on the keeping of a pet.

https://www.commerce.wa.gov.au/announcements/wa-tenancy-law-modernisation-strike-balance-between-tenants-and-landlords

 

Northern Territory  

Tenants have the ability to keep a pet at their rental premises, if after 14 days of notifying the landlord in writing of their intention to welcome the proposed pet into their family, the landlord has not objected in writing and made an application to the Northern Territory Civil and Administrative Tribunal (NTCAT).
Pet bonds are not permitted under the Residential Tenancies Act 1999.

Keeping Pets in a Rental Property Fact Sheet
https://consumeraffairs.nt.gov.au/__data/assets/pdf_file/0007/956779/keeping-pets-rental-property-fact-sheet.pdf

https://consumeraffairs.nt.gov.au/for-consumers/residential-tenancies

 

Tasmania  

A tenant can only have a pet at the property if the owner has agreed or it is in the lease.

Pet bonds are not allowed. Only one bond amount is allowed for a tenancy, and a pet is not able to enter into a lease.
https://cbos.tas.gov.au/topics/housing/renting/beginning-tenancy/pets

 
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