Helpful Tips Property Management

Forum Spotlight: Cats causing issues

Victoria Barker
Written by Victoria Barker

A landlord posted on our Forum recently a question about what she should do next with a long term tenant, whose cats were starting to become a nuisance.

At the start of the tenancy, it was agreed that the tenant could have two cats. However the landlord recently inspected the property and had discovered that the cats had scratched a lot of the carpet up, and the cat litter trays were even overflowing meaning there was a bad smell throughout the house.

The landlord was keen to write to the tenant to advise them of the need to keep the property tidy. They wanted to hear the views of other landlords on the Forum on how to word the letter so it is firm but polite.   

What landlords on our Forum said

The first landlord member to post on our Forum began by saying that in their opinion, writing to the tenant about this issue is unlikely to make a difference, though there would be no harm in writing.

Another landlord added their view, that this landlord had made a mistake to allow cats to live in the property in the first place, adding that it is now highly likely that the carpets will have to be replaced when this tenant does leave.

In terms of actually cleaning the carpet, they suggested trying a professional cleaning service to do this.

Don’t write to them at all

Another landlord said that they didn’t think it’d be worth writing to this tenant at all, as while the tenant is in the property, how they live is their own business (within reason)

Speak to the tenants instead of writing

A regular Forum user then added their view-that instead of writing to this tenant it would be effective to go and speak to them about this issue. They disagreed with the user above who suggested not writing to them, disputing this by saying that this landlord has a duty of care towards her tenant and it might even be the case that the tenant hadn’t realised how bad the smell in the property had got. This issue will not go away and will only get worse, so it is too risky to just leave it alone and ignore it as things stand.

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About the author

Victoria Barker

Victoria Barker

Victoria is the Communications Officer for the RLA.

She is responsible for producing articles for our Campaigns and News Centre, the weekly E-News newsletter and media review, and creating social media content. She also contributes to our members magazine, Residential Property Investor.

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