I will confess, I am a huge dog lover and most people who know me will attest to that. I think just about everyone knows our little girl *Abbey!
So you love dogs too (or you're a proud owner) and you are ready to have a place to call your own and you want your own piece of equity. With the Toronto housing market showing no signs of slowing, more and more urbanites are calling downtown Toronto their home, a condo is an ideal and affordable place to start.
A condo can be a great investment, but if you are a pet owner, as I am, you should be aware of some of the restrictions pet owners may face. This can be a touchy subject because pets are part of our family.
Who decides whether you can keep or have pets in condos?
If you already have a pet or want to become a new furry baby parent(s), this will depend on the condo’s rules, and you may not be able to have pets, but if you can, there most likely are rules surrounding what pets you can have, their size, weight and what you can do with them (probably can’t make them fetch stick in the lobby or jump onto your neighbours). All condo owners are obliged by law to comply with the condominium’s declaration, by-laws, rules and agreements. ((s. 19(1) of the Condominium Act)). For a more comprehensive discussion on this topic, see this article on owning pets in condos.
So you want a pet friendly condo? You're not alone!
Toronto is a city of pet lovers; just look at all the number of urban dog parks out there or people proudly walking past you with their pooch on a daily basis. So, it’s not surprising that the market is demanding more pet friendly condos with rules and amenities that suit their furry inhabitants just as much as their human ones. In fact, according to the Canadian Real Estate Association, one of the top 10 common searches on Realtor.ca is for ‘pet friendly’ neighbourhoods and condos.
Now of course, not every pet is appropriate for condo living. I encourage responsibility when selecting the right pet for your living arrangements, lifestyle, finances and commitment level which will means choosing based on practicality and not simply emotion – particularly when it comes to large and active dogs. Check out this article on the top dog breeds for apartment and condo of PetGuide.com’s post for small spaces.
Every condominium is different, some even feature dog washing stations and cool pet amenities. This in general, is becoming a common selling feature with many new builds. However, most condominiums in the city of Toronto have restrictions and allow pets but do your research as there are some that do not allow pets of any kind. Yes, that means even your sweet little Chihuahua.
So, which condominium is the overall best for your furry friends? Well, that is a personal choice and in the end, it all depends on the needs of both the buyer and his/her loyal friend so below I’ve made my selections based not only on a building’s pet vibe and human/pet ratio, but on the good old outdoors like the proximity to dog parks and walking trails. For you cat, bird, rabbit lovers out there, I have focused on dogs in this blog since canines are a little more difficult to accommodate and require much more room and exercise.
Here are my top 5 picks for ‘pet friendly’ condos:
#1 River City 2 Condos (32 Trolley Cres in Corktown District)
Part of three phases, River City II condo is high on the list of pent friendly condos. Many young pet-owning professionals call this freshly established neighbourhood home. With pet stores, pet hospitals practically at your door step, and not to mention the new the Corktown Commons ( an 18 acre park located at the foot of Lower River Street ) it’s dog heaven all year round.
#2 Robert Watson Lofts (363-369 Sorauren Ave in Roncesvalles)
One of my very favourite loft conversions in the city and it is a building with an above-average number of dog owners. The biggest perk for dog owners here, is literally steps to Sorauren Park which includes a fenced, sand-filled off-leash zone where dogs can run free.
#3 High Park Residences (1830 Bloor St W. in High Park North)
This brand new pet friendly condo was built in 2015 and it does not get better than this. Hit the ‘walk button’ and cross over Bloor St. to Toronto’s largest in-city doggie playground! 400 acres of mixed recreational and natural park making it Toronto’s largest in-city green space. Dogs are most welcomed here, and there is a large "off-leash" area to the north-east of the Grenadier Café called Dog Hill. Needless to say, it’s *Abbey’s favourite spot.
#4 Candy Factory Lofts (993 Queen St W in Queen West)
The Candy Factory Lofts is one of the most desired hard lofts in the city and you’ll find a lot of dog owners in the resident mix. In addition, its proximity to a incredible 37 acres of green (Trinity Bellwoods Park) is much-loved by local dog owners for “The Dog Bowl” where dogs can run freely and socialize. West Queen West area is packed with pet stores and boutiques.
#5 Tip Top Tailors Lofts (637 Lake Shore Blvd W in Fort York)
With spacious units, unique layouts, this former 1920s industrial building converted to condominiums lofts is the ideal location for any dog lover. Located directly across from Coronation Park (which is not only one of Toronto’s most beautiful parks), it’s a popular spot for local pooches, connecting owners to the Martin Goodman walking trails as well.
* In case you were wondering...this is Abbey!
Are you a dog owner looking to purchase a new condo or living in any of the above condos? Any questions about my post - 'I love Dogs! But What About That Condominium?' I want to hear from you so leave your thoughts in the comment section below.
Looking to buy, sell or refinance? Know your options. I can help! Direct line: 416-219-6662.