If there is an issue that can generate endless and passionate discussions if not arguments, are the rules and regulations regarding pets in the condo unit.
Of course, it's always wise to inquire as to the policy before buying the condo.
Someone who has to stay away from a certain kind of animal especially due to allergies will be wise to know beforehand what the true situation in the building is.
On the other hand somebody who owns a pet will want to make sure that it will be accepted by at least the immediate neighbors and the owner would want to demonstrate how well behaved and friendly his pet is. Also, if there are children and there is a possibility of an accident, the pet owner will be wise to take an appropriate insurance policy to protect him or herself against any unfortunate event that could happen.
Usually, and especially regarding dogs, condo regulation can specify that the pet has to be hand-carried when passing through the lobby. If the size of the dog makes it impractical, the owner will have to find an alternative path, through the garage for example, but always with the animal restrained with a leash and with proper care taken to protect the surface against any “droppings". It is the direct responsibility of the owner to clean up after his animal and some condominium buildings charge a fee of $50 or more for any “doggy-droppings" that has to be handled by the concierge.
Also, no animal can be left on the balcony or terrace of the unit when the owners are not present. Any disturbance by the animal is cause for formal or informal complaints and the condo owner who suffers a prejudice will not, usually, talk directly to the owner of the animal, but will direct his complaint with management. This method, although seemingly cumbersome has the advantage of avoiding direct confrontation between owners but can still create ill-feelings that could last for decades.
As far as pets that are kept indoors the principle that every man's home is his castle, applies. Hopefully, the sound proofing between the walls of the unit is adequate, so as not to annoy the neighbors with singing birds and other vocal animals. As usual, common sense and a certain degree of tolerance are required because pets are often considered members of the family and can be the source of intense emotional stress on both parties when tolerance is not practiced.
Gilles Martin is a Real Estate Agent, accomplished Entrepreneur and long-time businessman. His articles can be read on Musings of a Real Estate Agent .