Two months ago I closed on my first deal - 2 fourplexes, less than 2 miles from my house. The numbers worked great (at least in theory - time will tell!), and now I am in the process of getting things up to my standards. So far managing has been a piece of cake. The only issue I am having is parking...
Long story short, my one building has a parking lot that backs up to another building. Not only do the residents of the other building park there, but one of my units has 5 cars (for 2 people...) and they don't seem to understand the "two cars per apartment in the lot" idea. I've got a towing sign, and have used it - but I am thinking long term. I really don't like the complaint calls - I have to look up if the car is registered, call the towing company, etc.
So...what do you guys think about spending a few hundred bucks on getting the lot striped and painted with unit numbers? Has anyone done this? I would still have to take the phone calls, but I am thinking this would be a big deterrant in parking there if you weren't a resident.
I like this idea, @Ryan Bolus . It sounds like it can save you from a lot of future headache. The HOA at a condo that I own did this and it's worked out much better for the residents.
As far as execution, set a hard date and make it abundantly clear that all cars need to be removed on a certain date for "parking lot maintenance" and that anything left there will be towed at the owner's expense. Put flyers on all cars weeks beforehand and put up temporary signs as well.
Good luck and congrats on the property. Cheers!
That is one option but what about a blitz of enforcement. Issue stickers and tow , tow , tow for a while. Will that get people into compliance? works if you only have residents in the lot. Also the 5 car people have to choose what two cars they will be able to park in the lot if you issue stickers.
Thanks for the quick responses! I have thrown around the sticker/pass idea as well. Any recommendations on where I could get some - in small quantities...cheap?
I know an enforcement blitz would get my point across without a doubt, and I may end up resorting to that, but if there is any way I can do it "peacefully" thats the path I want to follow. Plus, I think the painting is a fairly cheap "upgrade" that makes the property look more professional.
I agree, painting and numbering is a must. We have our parking spaces labeled at our triplex here in CA, and the tow company whose sign we put up will tow any car that we or our tenants report as being parked in an assigned space. The tow company gave us a stack of forms to use, and we gave one to each of our tenants to fill out and give to the tow truck when they have a car towed. We do not even need to be there, the tenant can handle getting a car towed if it is parked in their spot. The key is that the spot has to be labeled so the tenant can show the tow company that they are authorized to park there and have other cars towed. I do not know if that would be the same in other states.
Just gotta share a story. We have an 8-plex and have the signage.... "Reserved For Tenants Only - Absolutely No Guest Parking" and the sign from the tow company with whom we contract is posted as well. Late one night, about 1130pm, I drive by on my way home from work and see an unauthorized car in the lot. I call the cell phone of the tenant who I suspect probably has a guest parking there. No answer. I don't knock on doors at that hour and this is not the first time this tenant has not followed the rules by allowing his guests to park in the lot, so I call the tow company. While I'm waiting for the tow truck, the owner of the car emerges from the unit that I had suspected. I introduce myself, take a photo of her next to her car and tell her that she is not authorized to park in the lot and I point to the signage. I also tell her that I already called the tow company. She gives me the "doe in the headlights look" and then asks "Would it be okay for me to take a few things out of my car before it is towed?" I advise, "It I were you, I would get in the car and move it to the street before the tow truck arrives." She says, "Oh! Okay." and moves it. I call the tow company and cancel the tow. Unbelievable.
If the parking lot is asphalt , you may want to sealcoat and stripe it at the same time .
Thank you all for the great suggestions and stories. I really appreciate it. I think painting is a no brainer after hearing all this. Now for the quotes...
The lot is probably due for a sealcoat - so might as well get it all done together.
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