Proposed Pet Deposit Bill in Hawaii Benefits Both Landlords and Tenants – Ontario Should Follow Their Lead
It’s the same thing we hear from Ontario tenants all the time. If you have tried to find a pet-friendly property in Hawaii then you will know just how tough it is. They do pop up from time to time, but they disappear very quickly. This is why both landlords and tenants in Hawaii have their eyes firmly fixated on the Pet Deposit Bill.
This bill has just been introduced into both the Hawaii state Senate and the House of Representatives. The intention of this bill is to allow both landlords and tenants to be able to discuss a pet deposit. This is similar to a standard security deposit but the idea is to cover pet damage costs. Therefore, if no damages occur from your pet, you will get the money back when you move out. As the law currently stands in Hawaii, it is illegal to be charged this deposit separately. This is different than most U.S. states and Canadian provinces except Ontario and Quebec.
This has nothing to do with ‘Tenants from Hell.” At the moment, studies have shown that landlords are very reluctant to making their property receptive of pets. This is because they have a number of financial concerns in place which means they feel as though they won’t be able to recoup their losses for pet-related problems. If this bill is introduced, then hopefully this financial concern will be eradicated. The bill is all about helping landlords and tenants, with a very positive approach compared to similar debates in places such as British Columbia.
Studies have shown that around 60% of households in Oahu have one pet. This means that there are far too many people out there unable to afford affordable housing for themselves and their pet, which means adoption rates are sky high.
At the moment, the standard practice in rental agreements is adding a bit of extra money on top each month if a resident has a pet. This is completely legal. However, the pet owner would not get any of this money back at the end if no damage is caused. They will with a pet deposit however.
At the moment, the bill is under fierce debate. However, it is believed that everything is going to go smoothly. Which means it will enter law on the 1st May 2013. However, it will not be active until November 1st 2013. Nobody has yet to challenge the bill, and it is unlikely they will do so.
If this bill is passed, then we will be likely to see affordable pet-friendly rental properties spring up around Oahu before the end of the year. Which of course is going to be for the benefit of everybody. Not only will tenants with pets be able to find somewhere to live, but landlords will also be able to rent properties without fear of pet damage.
To discuss this and other Ontario landlord issues go to the free Landlord Forum