Recent data from the RSPCA suggests approximately 61% of Australian households now own pets. Recent amendments to strata legislation have made residential strata generally more ‘pet friendly’, however these legislation changes do not automatically grant pet owners the right to keep pets in their units.
Different Strata Plans may have different rules when it comes to residents and owners keeping pets. It can be confusing to determine if you are permitted to have a pet in your strata plan and if so what decision making process must be followed before the pet is permitted.
Check your by-laws
The best way to determine if the residential strata property you live in or are considering purchasing/renting in allows pets, is to start by checking the registered by-laws. Typically, you will receive a copy of the registered by-laws when you buy or lease a property. If you are an owner and can’t find your copy of the by-laws, contact your strata manager to request a new copy. If you are a tenant, contact your property manager.
Often by-laws will have a clause that directly relates to pets within a strata property. In most circumstances where there are by-laws in place you’ll be required to get the strata committee or owners corporation’s permission to have a pet. It is common for there to be restrictions in the by-law relating to; the type of pet that can be kept, number of pets and size of pets. This list is not exhaustive so it is very important to familiarise yourself with the restrictions for your building. Proof of the pet have had its recommended vaccinations, micro chipping and registration with the local Council (as applicable) is also not uncommon. In some instances, references regarding the pets nature and behaviour from past landlords and neighbours can also be required.
Fresh Strata has an application form that residents can complete to provide all the required details necessary for the strata committee to make a decision on the application. Each application is assessed on its own merits by the strata committee when considering an application.
Your pet is your responsibility
Being a responsible pet owner includes cleaning up their mess on common property and repairing any damage they may cause to common property. This responsibility includes removing excrement and backfilling any holes a pet may dig. Every resident has a right to enjoy where they live, so if you have a dog that is an excessive barker or aggressive to other residents, you may be asked to permanently remove the pet from the strata property. You might also be sent a breach notice by the strata committee outlining how your pet has broken the by-laws.
What if I have an assistance animal?
Registered assistance animals can’t be denied residency under the Australian Disabilities Act. The strata committee still has a right to require an application form be completed and proof that your animal is registered with your local council as an assistance animal.
Choose Fresh Strata to assist with your pet application
Fresh Strata has extensive experience assisting Owners Corporations and individuals with pet applications. We are committed to providing strata committees with the most up to date information in regard to pets in strata and regularly review new case law and focus papers to ensure our knowledge is current.
As a business our core focus is on complete transparency and outstanding customer service to best support our Owners Corporations and residents.
For a Fresh Approach to Strata Management Contact us today.