The right of residents to park cars, trailers, caravans and trucks on the common property is generally limited. Usually only cars may park on the common property, only in the areas nominated, and only with the written permission of the body corporate.
Unless there has been a prior grant of exclusive use of common property car parking space, there is no “as of right” entitlement to parking on site by owners or other occupants, or guests.
Visitor Car Parking
In all community title schemes visitor car parking is a finite resource requiring careful management to ensure a harmonious environment. The problem with the management of this finite resource is an unrealistic expectation from some owners and occupiers that their visitors should have access to free and unrestricted car parking at all times. Unfortunately, this expectation cannot be met. Local authorities are approving the construction of new community titles schemes with less and less visitor parking. This is particularly the case in central business districts. However, regardless of how much visitor parking developers provide, the expectations of the owners and occupants must be managed through an effective communication process. Visitor car parking may be limited to just a few hours.
Who is Responsible for Parking Disputes?
In some instances, the body corporate has by-laws that prohibit people from parking outside of their specifically designated areas. Unfortunately, whilst these by-laws are considered the rules of the scheme they are not necessarily recognised by the police or local council. The responsibility of resolving parking disputes falls to the Body Corporate Committee.
It may seem that to tow, clamp or issue fines are obvious solutions for cars that park where they shouldn’t. However, it is not as simple as you might think.
Bodies Corporate unfortunately do not have the same rights when it comes to towing, clamping and issuing fines that local councils have. There are strict rules surrounding it, often ruling them out as options entirely.
Some strata schemes go down the path of engaging a carpark management company. This helps monitor any parking situations that may arise. However, it is important for Committees to remember that when interfering in any way with a car that is parked on common property, the Body Corporate may be liable for damages that may be caused to the car in the process. This is why these types of agreements are often discouraged from a legal perspective.
The law prevents bodies corporate from taking any physical action against illegally parked cars. However, there is talk in the industry that we might see changes coming in the near future that allow bodies corporate more power in these situations.
Until these changes come into effect bodies corporate are to continue with the method of sending correspondence to any owners or occupiers who do not comply with By-laws and are to apply to the Commissioners Office when matters are required.
Our advice is to remember that there will always be problems and conflicts that arise in community living. The best way to overcome them is to show consideration to your neighbours. Contact StarBMS today by clicking here.