Pet Friendly Condo Living

petsThere has been a lot of talk in the news lately about Toronto’s growing dog population and the need for more amenities, particularly in condominium developments. Toronto city planners are hoping to introduce new bylaws that would make amenities for pets mandatory in condo developments.

Dogs are a hot issue among the city’s condo dwellers and developers, and for many new developments is a huge selling point. We’re now hearing about conflicts that would have been inconceivable just a few years ago, like the condo owners in one new development near the Distillery District who were furious when a promised pet grooming area was cut from the final building plan. There are so many dog owners in the building that they can’t be ignored, and the grooming area is planned to be restored.

An even more telling sign of the times is the growing frequency of pet spas and grooming facilities listed as part of a condo building’s amenities. Condo developers are coming up with new solutions like dog runs and possibly pet care services on site. So why is this so important? The past decade has produced a remarkable shift. With the price of freehold homes rising in the Toronto area, the condo has become the first home for many, and pets are coming with the territory.

Pets-in-Condo-LobbyIf you are looking to purchase a condo in Toronto and you plan on moving with your pet it is best to do your research and due diligence prior to purchasing. Many condo buildings have rules and regulations that do not allow pets, or have restrictions on the size of your pet or number of pets allowed per unit. Here’s what you can do to ensure you pet can move with you:

  • Not all buildings are pet-friendly, so ask your real estate sales representative to only show you units where pets are permitted. Price and location are traditionally the top two factors that buyers consider when looking at a new place. But if you have a dog and the condo rules won’t allow it, you’re not interested in the building.
  • Once you’ve chosen the condo you would like to reside in and you’ve decided to put in an offer, make sure that your real estate sales representative makes the offer conditional on your lawyer’s review of the status certificate. A portion of this document deals specifically with the pet rules and regulations in the condo building, outlining the size, type and number of pets. Keep in mind that even if pets are permitted, any animal that is considered to be a nuisance or dangerous to the health, safety or welfare of the community is prohibited.
  • Just because a building allows pet ownership doesn’t always mean that it will provide pet amenities like a dog-run or pet grooming area, so do a bit of research on the neighbourhoods you would like to live in. Find out where the nearest off-leash parks are located, check reviews of the local grooming and dog-walking services, and don’t forget about the local vet clinic. You never know when there might be an emergency. Your real estate sales representative will be also able to help you with this information.

If you’re thinking of buying a condominium and you’re interested in knowing which Toronto condos are pet friendly, or if you have a particular building in mind but you’re not sure about its rules on pets, drop me a line.


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