Fairer Laws on Keeping Animals in Strata Schemes in NSW Announced August 25, 2021
The laws were informed by public consultation for the strata schemes statutory review earlier this year, including a survey on pets in strata.
The laws recognise the changing nature of strata living and the increasing shift towards pet ownership. These changes will make it easier and fairer for people to responsibly keep pets while living in strata.
Under the new laws, an owners corporation:
- can only refuse to allow an animal into the scheme if that animal unreasonably interferes with another resident’s use and enjoyment of their lot or the common property
- may still require residents to apply for approval from the owners corporation to keep an animal on their lot
- may still set reasonable conditions in their by-laws to manage the keeping of animals in the scheme. Strata by-laws that set a blanket ban on keeping any animals within a property are not valid.
The laws also include a list of circumstances where an animal causes an unreasonable interference to residents in a scheme. The owners corporation can take steps to prohibit an animal that is being kept in the property if the animal causes a nuisance, hazard or unreasonable interference.
Owners corporations will need to review their existing by-laws and make sure they comply with the new laws. Residents of a strata scheme with a ‘no animals’ by-law should contact the owners corporation to update the by-law.
The NSW Department of Customer Service has produced a report that sets out the public feedback received from the pets in strata survey and explains how the list of circumstances was developed. For more information please click on the links below:
Strata Schemes Management Amendment (Pets) Regulation 2021
under the Strata Schemes Management Act 2015 (click to open the PDF)
Review of the keeping of animals in strata schemes in NSW
Report under section 276A of the Strata Schemes Management Act 2015 (click to open the PDF)