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SA Property Law - Breach of Lease Agreement for Pets?

Discussion in 'Property Law Forum' started by JOB, 15 February 2016.

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  1. JOB

    JOB Member

    15 February 2016
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    We rented a property that was advertised as " pets allowed". During our rental application, we indicated that we will be having a labrador. Eventually, our application was approved, but during the signing of the lease, we were surprised to see "no pets allowed" indicated on the contract. The Property agent assured us that they can add a pet clause in after signing.

    Now they have just sent through said pet clause / pet lease agreement, but to our dismay, they have indicated that our puppy must be outside the house at all times.

    Can they do this at all under Property Law?

    We have always intended to keep the puppy as an inside dog.

    (We understand that the owners want to preserve the property, but the property was not supplied with furniture or carpet, so there isn't really anything the 3month old puppy can potentially destroy.)

    What can we do? What should we do? Help!
  2. Sophea

    Sophea Well-Known Member

    16 April 2014
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    Hi JOB,

    As I understand it, before you entered into the lease the understanding and agreement was that you were allowed to have a pet at the property. This was the basis and understanding upon which you signed the contract. The requirement that pets are to be kept outside arose after you signed the contract and, therefore, does not form part of the lease agreement. While you were aware that a pet clause would be inserted at a later time you did not have notice of the precise terms of it, and all that was contemplated between the parties was that pets would be allowed, not that they would not be allowed inside the house.

    I think you would have grounds to argue that you agreed that pets were allowed - nothing was agreed regarding their exclusion from the house. However, this isn't going to make the landlord happy. Therefore, I would try to come to some sort of compromise and agree that the dog is to be confined to certain areas of the home, any damage will be repaired and that you will do flea/insect sprays on the premises. Something like that?

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