Finding Pet Friendly Strata Properties
It’s been estimated that 60 per cent or more of Australians own a pet. With the trend towards high-density living arrangements, more and more properties are accommodating pets in some way. Often the issue of allowing pets will come up in strata schemes or properties with body corporates. Whether you’re renting or buying into such a property, you’ll want to check that they allow pets before signing the contract and calling the moving companies.
Pets and Strata Properties
Pets in higher density living spaces such as strata schemes can be a concern because of noise, cleanliness, and other issues that can impact on the living standards of other residents. However, as so many Australians own pets, many properties are pleased to accommodate families with pets.
Residents are subject to the by-laws or rules of their strata scheme, which is in turn subject to the local state or territory laws relating to strata schemes (or body corporates). This means you can check both the strata by-laws and the regulations in your state and territory to find out where you stand in relation to obtaining permission.
Check the By-Laws
You should obtain all relevant and necessary approval for keeping pets, and double check that your strata scheme’s by-laws permit pets to be kept by residents. Ask for a copy of the by-laws from the owners corporation and check for the provisions on keeping pets. Depending on the property, you may be able to keep a pet without explicit permission, or you might need to obtain written permission first.
Some properties may prohibit all pets and only permit guide dogs and other assistance animals. Strata schemes are usually not allowed to prohibit disability-assistance animals such as guide dogs and hearing dogs, though you should check the regulations in your state or territory for more information.
Renting vs. Buying
You should check the by-laws whether you’re renting or buying. If you’re renting and you want to keep a pet in your home, you should make sure that your lease agreement covers permission and that you have permission from the owners corporation. You should also have written permission if you’re intending to buy into a strata scheme.
Obtaining Consent Before Moving In
If you’re applying for consent, include all relevant information about your pet in your application. If you’ve lived in other strata properties or rental housing before, provide a reference from your previous landlord.
Moving into a new home usually means extra financial commitment, whether you’re renting or buying. Hence, it’s a good opportunity to obtain some pet insurance quotes before moving into a new property, so that you have a level of financial coverage for medical or treatment costs for your pet.
If You’re Refused Consent
If you’re refused consent for keeping a pet on the premises, you might be able to appeal to a tenancy tribunal or similar body in your state or territory. You’ll want to seek legal advice before doing so. It’s always a good idea to try and resolve the issue privately before advancing to mediation or adjudication.