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Landlord charges for pets - advice

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11/22/2016 14:08 EST

Hi all,

I am a Brit living in Belgium and I have just signed a new lease. The landlord waited until the very last minute to provide us with the contract (only had 15 minutes to review it). He knew that I had to be out of my current apartment in a matter of days, so knew I was in a position where I had to sign.

Unfortunately, there were a number of additional requirements listed which I do not agree with, including a clause that if I have a pet I need notify to obtain permission and pay €50 A MONTH.

I know that in Belgian law no-pet clauses in residential leases to be unreasonable, abusive, and contrary to public order, and have consequently declared them null and void. It is seen to infringe tenants’ fundamental rights to privacy and to inviolability of the home.

I understand that I signed the contract so will most likely have to accept that I need to pay to own a pet if I wish to, however, are there any lawyers out there who can confirm this?

If a no-pet clause is an infringement on my rights, then surely making me pay to have a pet is also unreasonable/a barrier to me exercising my right?


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3/25/2017 17:51 EST

it is not that simple. If you rent a country house, there is no reason why a landlord should prevent you from keeping pets. However, if you rent a small apartment, there have been rulings in Belgium in favour of the landlords. What is essential is that pets do not cause damage or problems (excessive noise, odour, ...) for the neighbours and that the apartment is spacious enough. Keeping a large dog will not be permitted.
If you cannot come to an agreement with your landlord, I advise you to get a lawyer.

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