Struggling to find a place to park your car can be highly frustrating, particularly after a long day. However, living in strata adds a unique perspective to parking your car.
Parking is easily one of the most contentious issues within strata living, sparking a myriad of queries and complaints. These issues can vary from visitor parking spaces, parking on common property, parking in other residents designated car spaces and leasing out car spaces.
At SSKB we find most issues can be categorized into 2 main areas:
Drivers who park in another residents designated space without permission
Drivers who park in visitor’s car space for longer than acceptable
If you are an Owner’s Corporation resident and you experience either of these two issues do not fret. Below, we have provided some solutions to help face these situations.
Personal car space:
It is important to remember in many strata parking situations that while the Owners Corporation rules may have been broken, that does not mean the car parked is breaking the law.
For the most part, if a car is parked in your assigned spot, you assume it is parked by accident. It can be the case that most strata car parks do not mark the individual spaces with the lot numbers for privacy purposes and to help protect the safety of the resident. We suggest the first thing you should do is write a note outlining what they are doing incorrectly and place it under the windscreen wiper of the occupied car. Generally, we find that soon after the car owner realises an apology is made and the mistake is never made again.
It is important to note that although a car is parked on your ‘property’ the vehicle is owned by someone else. Although it can be an inconvenience, do not react irrationally and damage the car or similar. This is highly illegal.
If all else fails, the next step would be calling for authorised person (police officer) to help resolve the issue. However, prevention is the best method ensuring everyone is aware of the rules!
You may look at installing a removable bollard within your car space that can eliminate parking issues within the private car space.
Visitor Car Space:
In Strata living common property visitor parking is commonly abused by car owners.
For visitors to the property, the visitor car parking spaces are regulated by the Owners Corporation Rules or from a Committee resolution. Similarly, the Committee is responsible for enforcing the rules in relation to strata parking and this cannot be delegated.
Evidently, the time limit and regularity for car owners using spaces is decided by the Owners Corporation. Some Owners Corporations choose rules that set time limits while others trust that low owners and their visitors will be considerate to promote harmonious strata living.
3 ways to prevent strata owners car parks being misused:
However, to prevent car owners abusing this privilege we have set out some strategies to utilize:
- Signage at entry and marking appropriate spaces as ‘visitors only’ is recommended.
- The owner’s corporation must advise residents that breaching any parking rule is unacceptable in any circumstances. Depending on the degree of non-compliance, this may involve:
- A letter to the individual resident and/or lot owner using the visitor car space;
- Issuing a formal breach notice; or
- Formal dispute resolution procedure as set out in the Owners Corporation rules.
3. Take photographs to document the abuse and act as evidence when presenting to the owners.
As a last resort, it is best to take this issue to the Owners Corporation. If the Owners Corporation is in agreement that there has been abuse of visitors parking and parking rules are not being adhered to the Owner’s Corporation can issue a Breach Notice. For more serious cases with repeat offences, the issue can be taken to the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal. Only VCAT has the power to issue fines.
Strata parking problems can cause disharmony within strata communities, however dealing with issues quickly can help increase residents’ living experience.
Remember that your Community Manager is always available to provide assistance with any issues you might be facing. Click here to speak to a Strata expert at SSKB today.