Pet Owners: Things to Consider When Shopping Homes

As pet owners ourselves, we at Team Andy Gibson know just how important it is to find a home that our pets can feel at home in, too. There's several things to consider to ensure you and your pet are going to find the best home for your needs. In the excitement of looking, you may forget to check into some very important key items. So this week, we're giving you some ideas on what you should look into to ensure you're making the right choice for you and your pet before committing to purchasing a home at the Lake of the Ozarks.

Check City and County Restrictions
Many cities restrict the number and types of pets allowed within city limits. This is especially important to look into when considering buying a home. The last thing you want to find out after closing on your new home and moving in, is that the city you live in restricts residents from having specific breed types within city limits, or that there is a per home pet limit. Many cities have ordinances in place that enforce leashing laws, fecal removal, and vaccination and registration of every pet with the city. Not only do you run the risk of receiving costly fines by being unaware of these types of ordinances and restrictions, but you could be forced to get rid of your beloved pet.

Review Homeowners Association Documents
If you're looking at a home or condo that is part of a Homeowners Association, you need to request a copy of the covenants and restrictions. Not every HOA allows pets. If the homeowner association permits pets, most likely the association bylaws will address restrictions on numbers, types, sizes, heights, noise factors and whether pets are allowed to freely roam the premises. Typically if a HOA does permit pets, there are specific pet designated areas set up for owners to walk their pets, and walking your pet outside of those designated areas or not cleaning up after your pet can result in fines. Many homeowner association covenants carry costly penalties for those who violate their HOA regulations.

Consider Home Location and Traffic
Sometimes, even the most well behaved dogs bolt when the front door is opened. Cats are inquisitive, and a curious cat can find a way to push open a screen door to get outside. In unfamiliar surroundings, pets may become confused and scared and can dart into the street in an attempt to find safety. To prevent this from happening, it may be best to pass on buying a home that is located on or near a busy street if the yard isn't fully fenced in.

When checking out the neighborhood, look for community-placed receptacles for waste deposits. Consider whether you would prefer an area where dogs are on leashes and the owners carry plastic bags, or a community where dogs run free, chasing cars, and pottying in any random yard they venture into. And of course, you'll want to know if you've got a neighboring pet that might become a nuisance or taunt your pets all day. This could be trouble in the long run, so take a moment to talk to the neighbors.

Consider Home Features and Layout
Is the yard fenced in? This is typically the most sought after feature that pet owners hope to find. If the home has an existing fence, make sure it is gated, the gate latches, and the fence is high enough so your dog can't jump over it. Inspect for loose fence boards that may need to be replaced. If the home doesn't have an existing fence, you may want to get measurements so you can accurately price the cost to have one installed.

Another thing to consider is the layout of your home. How does your pet fare with steps? If you've got a senior pet who has trouble climbing stairs, you may want to consider a single story home versus a multi-story one. And think about the flooring as well. Wood or ceramic floors throughout can prevent you from having to replace carpeting.

Look Into Local Pet Services and Parks
If you are buying a home in a new area, ask your agent and the neighbors for referrals pet services. Where can you find the best pet supply store? Are there any pet sitters or daycares nearby? You'll also need to find a new veterinary and groomer. And of course, you'll want to know where the local dog park is located!

We'd love to help you buy a home at the Lake of the Ozarks. We've got the experience you need on your side to find the perfect pet friendly home and neighborhood that suits your family's needs. So, if you're considering relocating to the Lake of the Ozarks, and would like to speak to an experienced real estate agent about your options, contact Team Andy Gibson today!

Keller Williams Lake of the Ozarks Realty
858 Hwy 42
Osage Beach, MO 65065 
573-286-5907 Cell
573-348-9898 Office


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