Buying a condo? Make sure your pet will be allowed in

If you are a pet owner and are interested in purchasing a condo, you should become familiar with the condo homeowners association rules and regulations which will state whether pets are allowed and if so, how many and what the restrictions are.

The pet owners I know — myself included — treat their pet like a member of the family. This is very evident in this true story.

A couple bought a condominium and were happily living in it. It was noticed by another owner that the couple had two large dogs. The association rules stated each unit can only have one pet and the pet weight cannot exceed 40 pounds.

According to the rules, both the couples’ dogs were not allowed. What’s the recourse? Well, it might be possible to have the rules changed, but that is highly unlikely. However, these new owners had to sell their condo and move to another where their pets could be accommodated.

What happened here is a sad situation. Somewhere, somehow, the buyer’s agent did not ask the all important pet question (Do you have a pet and if so, how many, what kind and how big?).

Also, the buyer’s attorney did not bring this point up to the buyers. However, the effective responsibility is on the buyer.

Before you buy

Part of any condo purchase is getting a copy of what is called a resale package. It is ordered by the seller’s attorney and forwarded to the buyer’s attorney for review and then given to the buyer to review. Included in the package will be the association rules and regulations. There is a five-day review period allowed by law. Reference 2011 Connecticut Code Title 47 Land and Land Titles Chapter 828 Common Interest Ownership Act Sec. 47-270. Resales of units.

This review process should be done early on in the transaction. With regard to pets, that question should be asked and answered before even making an offer.

I always ask buyers the pet question and if applicable and possible, get a preliminary copy of the rules from the owner via his or her agent to verify the pet restrictions. Better to do this up front than to find out later on before closing (as the resale package can be ordered late in the process) or worse yet find out after the closing as the couple did above.

The association rules and regulations are most important to obtain as early in the process as possible for review. If a condo buyer does not believe he or she can live by the rules, then it’s better to know sooner rather than later and get out of the deal via the 5-day rescission period.

Condo purchases have been popular this past year in Fairfield County. There is due diligence to be done when purchasing a condo and a buyer needs an agent experienced in condo transactions.


If you are interested in buying a condo and need an experienced condo agent, I would be happy to assist you in your quest to find the perfect condo for your lifestyle and budget and will be sure you are familiar with all the rules sooner rather than later.

For more information, contact Barbara Altieri, Realtor at RealtyQuest — Shelton and Darien — at, or 203-520-6930.