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Pets welcome at many Houston high-rise properties

December 22, 2017 GMT

Don’t think that living in a high-rise means you can’t have pets. Your home can easily be their home.

Houston’s condos have adapted to welcoming pets with amenities, walking paths and parks as well as porch potties. Most importantly, being aware of the living situation with pets in a high-rise before moving in can make the transition easier.

In Styleathome.com’s article, 8 Things to Know About Dogs and Condos, at the top of the list is being familiar with your building’s rules regarding pets in the home where some might forbid them completely or have restrictions on the size and type. Next, being aware of what happens in case of a complaint or a dispute with a neighbor over a pet is important to note.

Issues such as leash areas or where to exercise your pet, should also be examined before moving forward. Also, make sure your pet is well-socialized and not left alone for long periods of time because living in a high-rise isn’t the same as in a single-family home.

Paige Martin, broker with Keller Williams Memorial, lives in a high-rise, and also has a dog. Knowing pet policies for buildings is a great first step, she said.

“A number of buildings have restrictions on either the number of pets you can own, the weight those pets can grow to, and some restrict specific breeds,” Martin said. “In specific cases, new buyers can petition the HOA board for a waiver or exception. It’s wise for any new condo buyer to be aware of the rules, restrictions and enforcement policy of their building. In many cases, a pet can be forcibly removed from a building for cause.”

The process of letting your dogs go outside for a bathroom break can also be an issue when the back door to real grass is several floors down. Knowing the in’s and outs of that is something to look into as well. Martin recommends turning your balcony into a “pet facility,” or being prepared to increase your daily fitness activities by going and up and down the building for walks.

Developers are making condo residences even more pet friendly with some adding specific pet areas with gated fences and designated regions for animals Martin said.

The single best thing she’s noticed is the addition of large covered balconies, where a contractor can install grass, cleaning and water acting as a private backyard.

“2727 Kirby is an example of a building that does a great job. They have good sized balconies, a secured pet park, and full-time concierge service. In addition, the building staff is known for helping residences with their animals. If you’re looking at buying in a condo, and the area is still gentrifying, check to see if the building offers 24/7 security. They can help watch out for you on your 2 a.m. ‘potty break,’” said Martin.

Don’t forget the pet amenities that can make your relationship with your furry companion even more enjoyable.

These can range from pet-friendly HOA policies, secured pet areas for resident use only, and 24/7 concierge or security.

There are many choices to find the right fit for you and your beloved pet.

“There are over 90 residential high-rise and mid-rise condos in Houston,” Martin said. “High-rise and condo living is booming as more people are looking for an easier, maintenance-free lifestyle with amenities like pools, tennis courts, valet parking and more.

“One of the few downsides of condo living can be pet restrictions. However, there are luxury pet-friendly Houston condos.”