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 Post subject: the condo we just bought has pet restrictions. :/
PostPosted: Sun Dec 30, 2012 8:33 pm 
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We bought a condo. Hooray! But we found out after all the papers had been signed and the money had changed hands that the condo has a pet policy. Only 1 pet. We have 2 cats. I know what you're thinking- why didn't I ask about the pet policy? Well, we had been house hunting for months before that, so when we started looking at condos, I thought the only difference was monthly association fees. I didn't know there were lots of rules and didn't think to ask because, well, we were buying property, why would anyone be telling us what to do with it?

So, that's totally our mistake. We're definitely taking both cats. I can't think of why anyone from the condo association would be visiting our condo or checking on our number of pets. But they are cats, they like hanging out in windows. I've heard if we are found in violation, they can take us to court, and we will lose.

Any advice? Any ideas? We want this to be our forever home, and for our cats to be safe and happy.

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 Post subject: Re: the condo we just bought has pet restrictions. :/
PostPosted: Sun Dec 30, 2012 9:02 pm 
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I worried about this too and I tried to find out the pet policy and it was curiously difficult to do before I could buy. And of course there's a rush to bid/buy....Anyhoo, because I wasn't sure if I could have both cats when I first moved in, so I carried one cat in openly and sort of smuggled the second one in. Honestly, no one noticed or cared because there's all this moving stuff going on anyhoo. And it turns out I could have two cats in my condo anyway. But my plan was, were I restricted to one, I'd just keep the second cat and not say anything and maybe hide the cats, or one of them, when any condo rep comes around and you generally get notice on that sort of thing, anyhoo. I can relax though because I can actually have both cats, I'm just saying I was worried about this at the outset and was making a plan to keep both and that was my plan to just keep one kitty on the downlow as much as possible. I believe you're only allowed to have one dog in my building per resident and I know one lady on the 12th floor has two and no one bothers her about it.

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 Post subject: Re: the condo we just bought has pet restrictions. :/
PostPosted: Sun Dec 30, 2012 9:05 pm 
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Hopefully no one in your condos would actually care and report you if you had 2 cats instead of one? What on earth could that matter to anyone? I would think/hope the rules are meant more to deter animal hoarding and trashy yard decor? Congrats on the new place! Maybe you can get on the condo association and get the rule changed in the future!


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 Post subject: Re: the condo we just bought has pet restrictions. :/
PostPosted: Sun Dec 30, 2012 9:08 pm 
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Just fyi, it really is going to depend on how strict your condo association is. I lived in a coop in Manhattan and the coop head was a retired lawyer who literally screamed at me in the street about needing to get rid of my dog and hounded me (no pun intended) once he realized I had one that violated the rules (changed after I moved in).

If you have bought the condo and there is no way to reverse the sale, I'd just take my 2nd cat and hope no one says anything. Also, do you know if you can sublet? If your condo organization freaks out on you, could you easily sublet and get another place? My coop didn't allow subletting, so I was really screwed and forced to either sell my place or get rid of my dog (I sold my place, even though it was the apartment of my dreams, because nice as it was, Cuddles was my family from the minute we met).

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 Post subject: Re: the condo we just bought has pet restrictions. :/
PostPosted: Sun Dec 30, 2012 9:42 pm 
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I guess you don't have many options at this point, huh? So I'll just comfort you by telling you plenty of people I know violate pet policies with indoor cats. With dogs it's pretty obvious, but with kitties you just need to avoid nosy neighbors and keep them out of the windows! If you own the place there's no reason anyone should need to come in. And if they do for any reason just don't chance it and hide one of the cats for the day.

Obviously I wouldn't advocate going into a lease/buy knowing you're breaking the rules, but once you're in, meh...worry about it if the time comes.

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 Post subject: Re: the condo we just bought has pet restrictions. :/
PostPosted: Sun Dec 30, 2012 9:45 pm 
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Yeah, agreed with what Tofulish said. My condo assn did have someone walking around looking at the outsides of the houses, so what if they did see something, as cats seem to like windows.
Anyway, we had a decorative bird house on an outdoor pillar that had been there forever but one day we got a notice that we'd be fined like, $100 because it was on a certain side of the pillar. It had been there for years. Also, we were in a corner lot and honestly no one would've seen otherwise but we weren't allowed to have outdoor dog post/leash things (but damn, it's cold in the winter, come on!) and a bunch of other people had them but one day we got a notice that it couldn't be there. So I think it depends on how harsh the people are who are in charge of things.
We were allowed to have 2 dogs, up to 80 lbs total. So weird.


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 Post subject: Re: the condo we just bought has pet restrictions. :/
PostPosted: Mon Dec 31, 2012 1:08 am 
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Become the president of the association & make your own rules. ;)

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 Post subject: Re: the condo we just bought has pet restrictions. :/
PostPosted: Mon Dec 31, 2012 8:23 am 
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there's not much you can do at this point other than be vigilant about how much exposure your cats get. obviously dont let them outside.
hopefully no one (ie neighbors) will care. make pals with all your new neighbors around you because they're the ones who will be likely to notice. if you become buddies with them they will be less likely to feel like being a crasshole and reporting you.

we lived in a condo for 5 years, never had a single problem til towards the end of our time there. there was a no dog rule at our condo complex and my in laws came to visit us with their two small dogs. they didnt even STAY with us even though we had the room. they stayed in a hotel because of the dogs. they were physically over at our place during the day. the dogs i dont think barked once but we took them for a walk, etc.

we got reported and fined......for having dogs visit for one day.......
i wrote the condo association a nasty letter and they waived the fine but it was just stupid to begin with.

so im not trying to scare you as more likely than not with 2 indoor cats no one will ever notice BUT my point is people can be total jerks for no reason. sometimes condo associations get really weird about rules and stuff.

we also had our (registered and stickered) car towed for no reason and had to bail it out of car jail and their was damage done to it during the tow.

we think the same person reported the car and the dogs. cant prove it of course :-P

other than the end where shiitake went to hell for some reason we had an amazing 5 years in our condo. we moved because it got too small for us and i desperately wanted a dog.

i had a guinea pig at the end and i have no idea if that was against the rules or not but no one ever noticed her. ;-) a little less visible than a cat though

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 Post subject: Re: the condo we just bought has pet restrictions. :/
PostPosted: Mon Dec 31, 2012 11:00 am 
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Tofulish wrote:
the coop head was a retired lawyer who literally screamed at me in the street about needing to get rid of my dog and hounded me (no pun intended) once he realized I had one that violated the rules (changed after I moved in).


Those are the worst. (retired people who have nothing to do all day)

At least that's my experience with that kind of buildings. We had a building where there was a shared space where people could do their birthday parties.
So they asked us to charge the people for organizing a party cause when there is a party then the fridge is full and takes more electricity....

So it really depends on the h.o.a. and that's made up of the neighbours.

It could be an option to suggest at the next annual hoa meeting to vote on allowing 2 pets per unit. (you probably need to do that in writing)


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 Post subject: Re: the condo we just bought has pet restrictions. :/
PostPosted: Mon Dec 31, 2012 11:02 am 
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Veg_Eric wrote:
We had a building where there was a shared space where people could do their birthday parties.
So they asked us to charge the people for organizing a party cause when there is a party then the fridge is full and takes more electricity....


Who knew that the Grinch had moved to the Netherlands!

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 Post subject: Re: the condo we just bought has pet restrictions. :/
PostPosted: Mon Dec 31, 2012 11:08 am 
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Tofulish wrote:
Veg_Eric wrote:
We had a building where there was a shared space where people could do their birthday parties.
So they asked us to charge the people for organizing a party cause when there is a party then the fridge is full and takes more electricity....


Who knew that the Grinch had moved to the Netherlands!

Don't refrigerators that are full use less energy?


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 Post subject: Re: the condo we just bought has pet restrictions. :/
PostPosted: Mon Dec 31, 2012 12:01 pm 
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Olives wrote:
Tofulish wrote:
Veg_Eric wrote:
We had a building where there was a shared space where people could do their birthday parties.
So they asked us to charge the people for organizing a party cause when there is a party then the fridge is full and takes more electricity....


Who knew that the Grinch had moved to the Netherlands!

Don't refrigerators that are full use less energy?


Yep, it's harder for the motor to cool an empty space than a full space. Whatever is inside the fridge retains the cold.


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 Post subject: Re: the condo we just bought has pet restrictions. :/
PostPosted: Mon Dec 31, 2012 12:37 pm 
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Just remember, the rules in these kinds of places are often written to deal with problems. If your cats don't end up as problems for anyone, they could easily go unnoticed.

However, you should find out what the culture of your particular condo association is like. When we first bought our place last March, we had a number of problems in the first couple of months related to conflicting deed information with the owner of another unit. To sort this out, we had to attend the association meeting for our complex, which taught us quite a bit about how the rules are made and enforced in our building. We also got to listen to disputes about parking, votes to continue contracts for building upgrades, and even to see who some of the kooks in our building are.

For instance, we learned that some people wanted a motion to let people install wood flooring. It had previously been forbidden, but that about 30% of the units already had it. The board realized there was no way to enforce the rule that wasn't draconian, so they voted to allow it with certain restrictions, basically as a measure to encourage people to do it correctly.

In other words, we learned that there is a certain amount of flexibility in our association, and that the extra cat we are stashing probably isn't at the top of the enforcement list given the challenges they are working on. ;)


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 Post subject: Re: the condo we just bought has pet restrictions. :/
PostPosted: Mon Dec 31, 2012 12:42 pm 
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I have always had more pets than allowed, every place I've lived for 12 years. They were cats, quiet, and I never had an issue. I know for a fact that several of my management companies knew, but because I was an ideal neighbor in every other way they didn't care. I think they just kept it in their hip pocket in case I caused issues, then they could tack that on as a reason to get rid of me.

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 Post subject: Re: the condo we just bought has pet restrictions. :/
PostPosted: Mon Dec 31, 2012 1:15 pm 
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Invictus wrote:
I have always had more pets than allowed, every place I've lived for 12 years. They were cats, quiet, and I never had an issue. I know for a fact that several of my management companies knew, but because I was an ideal neighbor in every other way they didn't care. I think they just kept it in their hip pocket in case I caused issues, then they could tack that on as a reason to get rid of me.



i think this is a really good point. my husband and i were probably ideal tenants. always paid our condo fee on time, didnt make a fuss when there was a big assesment to redo the decks on each unit and paid that fee, didnt cause any trouble or make any noise.

so im guessing when this dog thing came up and i complained it was really easy for them to waive it, not only because the fine was totally unreasonable but also because we were ideal tenants.

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 Post subject: Re: the condo we just bought has pet restrictions. :/
PostPosted: Mon Dec 31, 2012 2:19 pm 
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I'm sorry for the kitty-rule situation you find yourself in, dakini! I know Dexter and Luna don't look alike, but hopefully you wont have neighbours that nosey that they'd be tracking cat activity to that extent? Well, unless they're at the window at the same time... I think, like someone said, getting to know your neighbours might be a good plan. I guess I just don't understand how if you own a place anyone would have a say over that kind of thing, particularly if they're indoor kitties?

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 Post subject: Re: the condo we just bought has pet restrictions. :/
PostPosted: Mon Dec 31, 2012 8:37 pm 
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I've had waaaaay more cats than I'm allowed under association rules. It helps that some are technically long-term fosters, but I haven't had any problems. I think as long as your cats behave, it shouldn't be an issue.


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 Post subject: Re: the condo we just bought has pet restrictions. :/
PostPosted: Tue Jan 01, 2013 5:50 am 
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Ouch! That's rough to find out after you signed and paid. Cats are quiet enough animals so your only problem will be them sitting in windows. It's annoying when blanket rules like this are applied. Like what if you had 2 goldfish?! Hardly the same as having 2 100lb dogs.

Just try not draw attention to the fact there is two. When you are not around maybe keep them in separate rooms so that if they are in windows it will be 2 separate ones and if they are seen then hopefully the person doesn't put 1+1 together and realise they are in the same condo. Consider even leaving the blinds down when you aren't around.

Play by every other rule and be an absolute saint so not to draw attention to yourself.

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 Post subject: Re: the condo we just bought has pet restrictions. :/
PostPosted: Wed Jan 02, 2013 12:45 am 
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I use to put enough potted plants in windows that my cats had access to that they could not get into the window. However, my cats are polite and try not to knock things over. I never, ever let a neighbor in my apartment.

You can also move when people would be asleep. Put cat carrier inside cardboard box with towels on top. Don't tell anyone there you have cats to begin with.

You can apply one way film directly to your windows ( you see through it at night though)

or You could ( or someone you know that is handy) could make wooden frames for your windows that will fit snugly around the edges painted or stained the same color as your window, the use a router to make a inner groove insert plexiglass before capping the top. The glass would be flush with your window ledge so your cats can't get into the window at all. You can put put one way window film on the plexglass along wiht the addtion of closed blinds at night ( you can see through film at night) your neighbors should never see your cats. If anyone asks bout your windows tell them you are being green and saving energy.

I've done the wood frames for energy saving purposes in my home and they are hard to notice from the street.

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 Post subject: Re: the condo we just bought has pet restrictions. :/
PostPosted: Wed Jan 02, 2013 2:06 am 
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8ball wrote:
Olives wrote:
Don't refrigerators that are full use less energy?


Yep, it's harder for the motor to cool an empty space than a full space. Whatever is inside the fridge retains the cold.

but a party will have the door opening and closing all day, losing teh colds each time - especially by people unfamiliar with the contents that hold it open to find "where the hell you keep the pickles, man?".. though certainly not enough to warrant a fee go cover a bump in your monthly bill

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 Post subject: Re: the condo we just bought has pet restrictions. :/
PostPosted: Tue Jan 08, 2013 6:37 pm 
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Oh good grief. I have 2 cats, and bought a condo 2 years ago and never even THOUGHT there would be pet rules in my own damn condo.

Well, one of my kitties is kind of nuts, and we can't let him look out of the windows. If he does, and sees another cat, he has 'misdirected agression' towards it, and will attack our other cat. So not exactly your problem, but we do have to keep him away from the windows. The ones that face any direction other than our yard at least.

We got wooden shutter type blinds to go in the windows. He can't move them to the side and peak out. We can keep them semi-open and get light in, but he can't see out the bottom which is where he would see other cats, and where they would see him.

They are kind of like these Wood Blinds but nowhere near as expensive. They look really really nice too.

I think you will be fine if you keep them out of the windows that face the street/sidewalk and just keep quiet about it.


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 Post subject: Re: the condo we just bought has pet restrictions. :/
PostPosted: Thu Jan 17, 2013 11:33 pm 
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Pffft to paying any attention to a "Pet Policy". As if its any of their forking business.

The chances are slim that you'll be the only person in the building with more than one pet. Everybody'll be doin' it. Just keep on the down low and you'll be fine.

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 Post subject: Re: the condo we just bought has pet restrictions. :/
PostPosted: Thu Feb 07, 2013 7:09 pm 
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This post was actually one of the reasons I signed up to this forum. There were some good suggestions here. I'm hoping for an update from the OP as to what has happened. And I'm wondering who said you would lose in court if found in violation of the pet policy? Which I think is totally bogus.


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 Post subject: Re: the condo we just bought has pet restrictions. :/
PostPosted: Thu Feb 07, 2013 10:07 pm 
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interrobang?! wrote:
I'm sorry for the kitty-rule situation you find yourself in, dakini! I know Dexter and Luna don't look alike, but hopefully you wont have neighbours that nosey that they'd be tracking cat activity to that extent?


How open are you to the idea of giving one of your cats a makeover to fashion it into an exact image of the other cat in case anyone is watching...? No?

Seriously, though, that policy is much too strict. If you're pretty sure there's no flexibility to it, I'd do what others have said and be super stealthy. Sneak one of the cats in when you move. Put curtains up so you can close them during the day when you're not home and avoid window creepin'. It will be a little sad for the cats but at least you'll be able to keep your place and not get in trouble.


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 Post subject: Re: the condo we just bought has pet restrictions. :/
PostPosted: Mon Feb 11, 2013 2:58 pm 
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Tofulish wrote:
If you have bought the condo and there is no way to reverse the sale, I'd just take my 2nd cat and hope no one says anything.

This. It all really depends on how strict your condo association and how noticeable your cats are. My mom lives in a condo with a 2 pet limit, but she has three cats and nobody's said shiitake. If you're worried about them being visible through the windows, get blinds or something. As long as they're not super-noisy or smelly the second cat will probably never get noticed.


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