Bad news, renters who have pets: A solid majority of Canadians believes landlords should have the right to evict tenants with animals.
A new survey from Angus Reid found only 37 per cent of respondents agreed that landlords should not be able to refuse to rent to people with animals. Sixty-three per cent sided with the landlord's right to refuse to rent to pet owners.
Not surprisingly, there is a gap between how homeowners and renters feel about the issue, with a full 70 per cent of homeowners siding with landlords' rights. Among tenants, views were split 50-50.
There is also an income gap on this issue. Households earning less than $50,000 were more sympathetic to the tenant's side, but still sided with landlords 54 per cent to 46 per cent. Among households earning more than $100,000, fully 76 per cent sided with landlords, and 24 per cent with tenants.
"For people who currently have pets, the need to find a pet-friendly landlord limits the number of options available when apartment-hunting — a problem that becomes all the more acute in highly competitive rental markets such as Vancouver and Toronto," Angus Reid said in its report.
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In most Canadian provinces, landlords have the right to refuse pets, although pets are allowed unless specifically banned in the lease. However, under Ontario's Residential Tenancies Act, landlords aren't allowed to include no-pets clauses — although it is still known to happen. And there are still conditions under which a tenant can be evicted for having a pet — for instance, if other tenants or the landlord are allergic.
"Though Ontario is the only province to prohibit 'no pets' clauses in tenancy agreements, its residents are only slightly more sympathetic to the renters' side of this face-off than the national average," Angus Reid noted in its report.
Earlier on HuffPost Canada:
And while residents of Toronto and Vancouver expressed almost identical views on the issue, residents of Montreal were somewhat more favourable to tenants' rights.
This is no doubt due to the fact that Montreal's home ownership rate is considerably lower than Toronto or Vancouver (55.7 per cent for Montreal, compared to 66.5 per cent in Toronto and 63.7 per cent in Vancouver, according to Statistics Canada).
Angus Reid's numbers came from an online survey of 5,413 Canadians who are members of the Angus Reid Forum. It was carried out from Dec. 7-Dec. 14, 2017, and has a margin of error of +/- 2 percentage points, 19 times out of 20.
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