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Can My Landlord Charge Pet Rent in Massachusetts?

Pet Rent_FotorProblem:  Samson is the best cat in the world.  For the most part, he just sits by the window and watches the day go by.  You have had Samson since you moved out of your parents’ place.  He is not your partner, but he is close.  Your landlord recently found out that Samson lives in the apartment with you.  The lease is due to be renewed and the landlord has informed you that he will be charging a pet rent if Samson continues to live with you.  Is charging pet rent legal in Massachusetts?


Answer: A landlord may charge pet rent.  The law is not terribly clear on this but thus far, there is no case in point making the extra charge for a pet on a monthly basis illegal.


A landlord may also charge a “pet deposit” as long as taken together with the security deposit, it does not exceed one month’s rent.  Read more about Pet Deposits here.


If you think you landlord is not in compliance with Massachusetts Tenant/Landlord Law, contact us.

Arthur Hardy-Doubleday

Author Arthur Hardy-Doubleday

Arthur Hardy-Doubleday practices law in Cambridge and Martha's Vineyard Massachusetts. He works in the areas of Real Estate, Personal Injury, and Consumer Protection Law. When not practicing law, Arthur enjoys sailing, hanging out with friends on the beach, and waking his dog "Ridiculous."

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