Should You Buy a Condo with a Dog?

written by Elyse Berman, CRS
Boca Raton, FL   
Mar 5, 2021

Should you buy a condo with a dog? Interesting question and definitely something to think about if you have a dog or more than one.

Condo living is easy. No question about it. There is less to take care of than with a house. When you leave, you just lock your door and go. Everything outside your drywall is taken care of by the condo association. Sounds good, right? It is good for many people and it may be for you too. But, if you have a dog, there are some things to consider before jumping in.

First, does the condo accept pets? In other words, is it a pet-friendly condo? If they do accept dogs, do they have a weight limit? How about breed restrictions or maximum number of pets? If a condo accepts pets up to 20 pounds and you have a Golden Retriever, you may have a problem. Or if they accept one pet and you have two, you may have an issue.

Do the rules of the condo require you to vaccinate your pets? Many condominium buildings do. Not everyone believes in vaccinating their pets today. Rabies is required by law in many areas, but I'm talking about other yearly vaccinations. Some people titer their pets. They do a blood test to determine if your dog or cat still has antibodies to previous vaccines. If they do, nothing more is required. If they do not, your pet will receive the appropriate vaccine. This is fine, but will it work with the condo association. Something to inquire about.

Is your dog a barker? Occasional barking is one thing, but if your dog has separation anxiety or is just a barker, condo living may not be a good fit for you. Neighbors may complain. You don't want to have your dog deemed a nuisance, as many of the condominium documents address just this issue. Your neighbors are entitled to peace and quiet in their homes. If you have a barker, you may want to consider a townhouse or single-family home instead to head off any potential issues.

How about walking your dog? Are there grassy areas nearby? Does the association supply dog bags? Will your dog be allowed to walk on the elevator, or will you be required to carry him/her? How about the lobby, are dogs allowed to go out through the lobby or must they use an alternative exit/entrance? You and your furry friend may be fine with the condo's rules, but you should be aware of them before you buy.

Condos have more rules and regulations than townhouses or houses, but many people love living there - with their pets. They key is to find a condo that is pet friendly, so they will welcome your furry friend. You do not want to get funny looks or to feel you and your friend aren't welcome, even though you were able to get them in.

If you're planning to buy a condo with a dog, it needs to be right. Please check all facts first.

Elyse Berman, PA, CRS is a Pet-Friendly REALTOR® who has been helping people buy and sell homes for the past 16-plus years. She serves Palm Beach County, Florida.  Check out her blog.