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Neighbor Disputes – Q & A

Q: Can a condo association ban pets?
A: A homeowners association can both enact and enforce such pet restrictions. As the following case illustrates, it is important to read a development’s covenants, conditions and restrictions (CC&Rs) before you buy into it. Pet restrictions sometimes appear there. Also, if you have talked to other owners, you will know whether or not there is tolerance for pets.

In the case of Nahrstedt v. Lakeside Village Condominium Association, Natore Nahrstedt, a resident of Lakeside Village Condominiums believed it was reasonable for her to keep three cats even though her deed restrictions read, “No animals (which shall mean dogs and cats), livestock, reptiles or poultry shall be kept in any unit.”

Nahrstedt filed suit after the board assessed fines of $500 a month against her. The California Supreme Court ruled in favor of the association.

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