Many of our lives are enriched by the presence of a pet, whether that’s a goldfish or a fluffier companion. But it’s important to check whether you’re allowed to keep a pet in your strata unit before you bring them home, or you could risk having to rehome them.
What are the rules about having pets while living in strata?
- That will depend entirely on your strata scheme’s individual by-laws. A strata scheme can vote in specific by-laws regarding pets, which could match one of the following or be a different rule entirely:
- Restricting all pets except assistance animals
- Allowing pets with written permission from the owners corporation
- Allowing pets and requiring written notice once the pet has stayed for 14 days.
The rules will vary from strata scheme to strata scheme – some are notoriously strict while others are more relaxed about allowing small pets. Remember that if your strata scheme by-laws do allow pets, you will still need to make sure your pet is supervised and not negatively impacting other residents: for example by excessive barking. You’ll also need to make sure you tidy up after your pet on any common property. Tenants will always need to ask permission from their landlord before bringing a pet into the strata property.
What are the changes to the NSW strata legislation regarding keeping pets?
The 2016 changes to the NSW strata laws simply lay out new model by-laws that make it easier for strata schemes to adopt a specific rule relating to pets. Where once pets in strata were a fairly restricted matter, it’s hoped that these model by-laws will enable more reasonable rules for many properties. The model by-law removes the reference to banning pets completely providing the option for allowing pets with written permission from the owners corporation. If voted in, this second model by-law states that no reasonable request can be refused, or if it is that written reasons be provided. This makes it much more likely that small and manageable pets will be accepted throughout the state.
What about assistance animals?
If you have an assistance animal, you need not be concerned. Even if your strata scheme has decided to prohibit pets, a trained and certified assistance animal is always allowed within a strata property. Any strata by-laws attempting to prohibit assistance animals will not be enforceable.
For information on keeping pets at your strata property contact your strata manager at Real Property Services on (02) 9960 4713, or send us a message.