Landlord’s guide to parking management
Urban parking has always been highly sought after. In 2009, a single spot in Back Bay made the headlines after being sold for $300,000. Parking is also a precious amenity that adds substantial value to urban properties, and a stable source of revenue for homeowners and property managers.
However, renting out and managing parking spaces can become a real hassle, as well as a bone of contention between landlords and renters. We put together our best pieces of advice to make parking management as smooth as possible.
Use the right terms
When it comes to advertising a rental property, every word matters, and parking shouldn’t be an exception. It is critical to provide accurate and precise information on the available parking space(s) to potential tenants.
- On-street parking: As its name implies, it refers to parking spots located on the streets.
- Off-street parking: Indicates that parking is on the property but does not mention whether it is indoors or outdoors. You should also specify if it is a garage (attached or detached), a parking lot, a driveway, a carport, a breezeway, etc.
The type of parking available for renters can considerably influence and justify the price you will charge. For a detailed explanation of the different types of parking, visit gimme-sheter.com.
Know the laws
Make sure to stay updated with your city parking laws and always communicate them with your tenants. When it comes to on-street parking, keep up with parking bans or restrictions. Beware of street cleaning or public work that could restrain residential parking on certain days. For information regarding Boston on-street residential parking, check the City of Boston’s website
Create a parking space rental agreement
Dedicate a section of the residential lease to parking, or create a separate contract for the parking space(s) alone. Make sure to state all the rules but also the rights of the tenants. Creating a fair and reasonable lease is key to building and keeping a good relationship with your renters. Finally, make it as exhaustive as possible, leaving no room for any possible doubt. Check out this parking lot agreement from sec.gov.
Consider renting parking separately
It’s generally easier and more convenient for owners to include parking with the rest of the rental property and couple it with rent. However you might want to separate parking and housing rent, instead of bundling them together for a couple of reasons:
- Tenants may not have a car due to the walkable neighborhoods or the vehicles being a liability.
- You will optimize underutilized parking spaces by renting it out to non-tenants that need parking.
- It will help prevent subletting as you keep control over who rents out the parking spaces.