Can I Really Lose My Apartment Over an Outdoor Cat?

Q: I’ve been renting a ground-floor condominium in a Lower East Side co-op for 13 years. For two and a half years, I’ve had an out of doors cat. He stays inside in the course of the day, and at evening makes use of a cat door that I put in to exit to the constructing’s courtyard. He often wanders into different constructing entrances within the complicated. I’ve been advised that some residents complained to safety, and that the board might not approve my lease renewal except I preserve him indoors. This appears merciless. I may stroll him on a leash, however even that looks like an excessive amount of of a restriction. Can the board actually deny me a lease renewal over this?

A: As a market-rate rental tenant residing in a co-op, your rights are restricted. Even in case your landlord has no downside together with your outside cat, the board can override your landlord and deny your renewal if the pet violates the constructing guidelines.

The co-op’s guidelines most likely prohibit companion animals from roaming round public areas and not using a leash or different type of restraint. While such guidelines are often geared towards canine, “those self same guidelines would prohibit a cat from being unfastened in any public areas,” stated Darryl M. Vernon, a Manhattan actual property lawyer who ceaselessly represents house owners of companion animals. To fulfill the board’s calls for and preserve your condominium, you “ought to preserve the cat indoors and take it to the park” on a leash, Mr. Vernon stated.

Outdoor home cats usually are not a typical sight in New York, however they do exist. Even the Netflix sequence “Russian Doll,” offers a nod to free-roam felines. Nadia, the perpetually doomed character performed by Natasha Lyonne, spends lots of her lives trying to find her misplaced cat in Tompkins Square Park, leaving it meals on her patio and worrying about its destiny. While Nadia could also be in a battle with loss of life, she will not be in a standoff with a co-op board, so she will let her pet roam.

You should determine whether or not your cat’s want for unfettered outside time is price shedding an condominium you’ve had for over a decade. Keep in thoughts that you’ll have bother discovering one other condominium with straightforward outside entry and a landlord who would welcome an out of doors cat that wanders into lobbies. To preserve the house you will have, chances are you’ll have to restrict your pet’s outside time to hours when it may be leashed and supervised.

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