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A development company that is explicitly “pet-friendly”

Kevington Building Corp, one of RAPS’ great corporate partners, recognizes that animals are a part of our lives and families – and the company creates communities that reflect that reality.

Finding pet-friendly housing – whether rental or strata-titled – is a major challenge in British Columbia. Landlords and strata councils are largely free to choose whether companion animals are permitted in a suite or a building. 

So, it is rare to find a development and property management company that is explicitly “pro-pets.” RAPS is deeply grateful for the depth and breadth of support we receive from socially responsible corporate partners. We are especially proud to be associated with Kevington Building Corp., which supports our programs that save and improve the lives of animals. Kevington also walks the walk in terms of creating communities where families that include pets are enthusiastically embraced.

Michael Gunion, Kevington’s General Manager, Operations and Marketing, says that welcoming pets is an integral part of the company’s larger ethos. 

“We could not say that we create community-oriented rental properties if we didn’t embrace pets because pets are very much part of the community,” he says. “We are proud to offer rentals that enthusiastically accept pets into our properties. Pets are a big part of families and communities so we strive to create a balance between pet owners and non-pet-owners to establish a friendly building and community for all.”

Kevington’s 16 properties – which include residential, retail, and mixed residential-commercial spaces – are all pet-friendly. Businesses are more than welcome to have an office dog or a shop cat. Members of their maintenance team even carry treats to make furry friends at any property! Pets are such a great way to bring people together and create a healthy and cheerful living and working environment. The comings and goings of folks walking their pets adds to the activity in a building, which not only creates incidental connections but increases safety for everyone. If you know your neighbours, you’re far more likely to recognize something suspicious.

Walking dogs is the most obvious way that informal social connections are made. But cat people also connect in Kevington properties, partly because of an online tenant portal. People are able to connect with other cat owners and, Gunion says, residents can rely on one another to pet-sit or even call someone for a quick hand if they’re stuck late at the office and need someone to feed the cat.

At The U, Kevington’s new apartment rental tower in Coquitlam – set to open this spring – there is a sizeable urban orchard with over 30 fruit-producing trees and an outdoor dog area for some quick dog exercise on the building’s second floor garden patio. 

One of Kevington’s approaches to building communities within their buildings is making it as easy as possible to adapt to changing lifestyles. Want to add a pet? The Kevington team is there to discuss it – and they also might have some advice. “We have seen lots of pets and pet owners, and some breeds and size of dogs seem more suited for an urban, apartment living lifestyle. We take a genuine interest in the wellbeing of both our communities’ pets and their owners, so we are happy to share our experience with our residents and help them choose a breed suited for apartment living.”

The company’s flexibility extends to human relationships as well. If a resident wants a partner to move in, it’s a simple addition to the lease. Likewise, when a relationship ends, Kevington knows paperwork is the last thing someone wants to face. They have a simple one-pager to take one party off the lease. In a few cases, separating couples both loved living in a Kevington building and community so much that they have both remained on the Kevington property – just in different apartments. 

Conversely, the sense of community and interaction that the company encourages in its buildings often has unintended but welcome romantic consequences. Pets make friends with residents, residents meet other pets that they love, and occasionally residents meet and fall in love with each other!

“We joke that our properties are a bit like those old romantic TV sitcoms like the Love Boat or Melrose Place,” Gunion says. “We have had so many residents meet each other because of all the events and tenant get-togethers that we host.” They have had tenant proposals and even weddings at their properties.

RAPS believes that animals make our lives, families, neighbourhoods and communities safer, healthier, and happier. We are so pleased to partner with a business that shares this core value.