Tag Archives: Parking

Board Wishes to Grant Exclusive Use of Handicapped Parking Space to Unit Owner

D.B. from New Haven County writes:

Dear Mister Condo,

The association installed a handicapped spot per owner’s request. He is upset since visitors are occasionally parking in it. Can we put the unit number on it?

Mister Condo replies:

D.B., the association is free to enforce the handicapped parking spaces in their association-owned parking lots as they see fit. If non-handicapped cars are parking in handicapped spaces, they can be towed at owner expense, especially if there are signs indicating that non-handicapped cars will be towed from handicapped designated spaces. However, just because there is a handicapped space that was set up by the Board at an owner’s request, that doesn’t make the spot his. Other handicapped unit owners (and/or guests depending on the parking policy) with properly marked handicapped placards may also use the space. Generally speaking, it is “first come/first served”. However, if the Board wishes to designate a space for the specific use of one resident, it could try. However, don’t be surprised of other unit owners balk at the idea. After all, if everyone else is fighting for the limited spaces available at the association, they would be right to call foul for any single unit owner getting special treatment. Shared association parking is at a premium; the Board has a duty to protect the rights of all unit owners to use the amenity. All the best!

New Condo Owner Needs to Remove Handicapped Parking Designation from Deeded Space

M.F. from outside of Connecticut writes:

Dear Mister Condo,

We are looking to buy a condo. It comes with two deeded spaces. However, one of the spaces has a handicapped designation. Will we be free to use the spaces (as we would be the owners) despite the designation? 

Mister Condo replies:

M.F., congratulations on the new condo! You should check with either the management company or the Board of the condo before you purchase just to make sure that the two deeded spaces are yours and not owned by the association. It is unusual for a unit owner to get a private space designated as handicapped. What would be the reason? The unit owner already has exclusive use of the space, handicapped or not. It is possible that this unit owner decided to designate one of his deeded spaces as handicapped for a personal reason or that the Board actually designated the space as handicapped at his request. You do need an actual answer before you simply assume that this is one of your deeded spaces. As long as you actually own the space, there should be no issue with you removing the handicapped designation or using it as you see fit. Good luck!

Finding the Parking Rights on a Condo More Than 50 Years Old

M.B. from outside of Connecticut writes:

Dear Mister Condo,

I live in a building that was built in the Sixties. I have a two-bedroom condo and one parking space. There are many residents that have two parking spaces. There are some residents that rent their spaces for extra income. The real estate agent has been the president of the board for over 25 years and makes a good living renting and selling apartments. He has been known to be a bit of a con man. Since my apartment has been turned over several times since I purchased it, how can I find out how many parking spaces it was originally?

Mister Condo replies:

M.B., you should check your deed and/or closing documents from when you purchased your unit to see if the number of parking spaces is mentioned (it should be). There may also be a copy of the original deed at your local Property Office (this varies from town to town, city to city, county to county, etc.) so you might need to do a little research to find out where your local records are stored.  As for your dislike of the long-serving Board President, consider that the collective unit owners that have lived there for the 25+ years he has been elected to the Board have continued to reelect him year after year. He must be doing something right. 

Condo Parking Law for Backing Up Cars

G.K. from Florida writes:

Dear Mister Condo,

In Florida, what is the law about backing your car up in your parking space?

Mister Condo replies:

G.K., I am not aware of any law that requires you to back your car into your parking space. However, many associations require that your license plate be visible when parked so that they can easily see that the vehicle is properly registered and licensed. Most associations prohibit unlicensed and/or unregistered vehicles on association grounds. Check the parking rules for your association and follow them as you have agreed to do when you moved in. All the best!

HOA Requires City Resident Parking Permits for Parking Passes

C.S. from Massachusetts writes:

Dear Mister Condo,

I am an owner of my condominium with an onsite parking lot. I have two parking spaces on my unit deed. Due to recent parking issues the HOA sent out a letter stating in order to receive our new parking pass for our parking lot we must obtain a city resident parking permit prior to any passes being issues. Is this something an HOA can require?

Mister Condo replies:

C.S., I don’t see why not. You are a resident of the city and assuming unit owners are paying taxes to the municipality in return for their parking permit, it isn’t too far of a jump for the association to use the city’s parking permit for verification for their own parking pass issuance. If a unit owner were denied a parking pass for a deeded space based solely on refusal to produce a city parking permit, I could see where the rule could be challenged but it would take time, effort, and a lawsuit to do so. My guess is that it is just easier to comply with the HOA’s request. Good luck! 

Condo Parking Lot Design Blocks Walkway Access

S.A. from New Haven County writes:

Dear Mister Condo,

My condo has unassigned parking with a “two space” limit, first come-first serve. The issue is that spaces are directly in front of my walkway. Vehicles completely block it. During normal weather I can use the grassy area to go around. During winter when snow is piled high and I have to squeeze between vehicles and there would be no way for a quick medical extradition if needed. I have requested adjustment numerous times without any solution. I even drew a schematic with an easy solution. I also have a 20% disability to my right leg. Is this a legal parking spot? Thank you

Mister Condo replies:

S.A., unless the local building code calls for something else, these parking spots. Are under direct control of the board to use as they see fit. You would think that they would want to keep a path clear for unit owners and first responders but I am not aware of any law requiring them to do so. This parking condition has likely existed since the condo was built so it is not a new condition. Keep speaking common sense to the Board. Perhaps they will agree with you and act. If you feel your disability entitles you to more than the Board is willing to do, you might want to speak with an attorney to see if you can sue them and force them to act. Other than that, I think you are stuck with the parking situation as it is. Good luck!

Can I Use My Condo Parking Space As I See Fit?

M.S. from outside of Connecticut writes:

Dear Mister Condo,

Hi I have a deeded parking spot that has its own tax bill. My son moved back home and has equipment to start a business in my parking spot. I park on the street. Someone complained as usual here and now they sent out an email that says the condo association 3-4 people decided nothing can be stored in a parking spot. Remove in a month or pay a fine. Isn’t this the same as my unit and I can keep items there?

Mister Condo replies:

M.S., the short answer is “no”, your parking space is not the same as your unit with regards to you using it as you see fit. The Board took the actions necessary to prevent other unit owners from following your example and using the parking lot for anything other than what it was intended for, namely, the parking of cars. Imagine living in a community where unit owners decided to store trash in their parking space or house livestock, etc.. It would quickly become chaotic, unsightly, and even dangerous. Your Board is in the right here, you should comply with the new rule. All the best to you and your son’s new business!

Condo Handicapped Parking Requirement

B.F. from New Haven County writes:

Dear Mister Condo,

How many handicap parking spots are required for residential only condos?

Mister Condo replies:

B.F., since parking areas at residential condos are typically private property, owned by the association, there are no mandatory requirements for handicapped parking. The association, governed by its democratically elected Board of Directors, is in control of the common grounds, including the parking area. The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) governs how many handicapped accessible parking spaces are in public parking lots but doesn’t address private parking lots. Any unit owner or resident is free to petition the Board to ask for handicapped parking but they are not under any obligation to provide them. The reality is that parking is at a premium at most condos and just isn’t feasible to allocate spaces within the limited resources of the association. Good luck!

Unit Owner’s Car Finish Damaged by Association-Owned Tree

A.T. from outside of Connecticut writes:

Dear Mister Condo,

I have two assigned parking spaces. There is a lot of debris coming out of the tree above which destroys car paint. Am I entitled to request reassignment of parking or request tree removal from the HOA?

Mister Condo replies:

A.T., it is doubtful that you will get it but you can certainly request that the Board reassign your space or remove the tree. The Board controls the parking lot assignment and you more or less get what you get. I am sorry that there is a particularly nasty tree above your space but the Board is not obligated to do anything about that. Are you the only one effected? If not, gather a group of signatures to present top the Board. Perhaps there will be strength in numbers. Other than that, a car cover may be your best bet for protection. Good luck!

Condo’s No Parking Rules Ignored by Unit Owners Including Board President

K.J. from Fairfield County writes:

Dear Mister Condo,

There is a spot near my garage which is marked “No Parking”. If someone parks there, it is very difficult if not impossible to maneuver my car into my garage. Additionally, it narrows the driveway in our parking lot so that other cars have trouble going around the lot. Sometimes a neighbor will have a guest park there because the guest is too lazy to park in visitor parking which is about fifty feet away. One of my neighbors parks there weekly because it’s just more convenient than her garage. That neighbor is president of the condo complex. I have complained to her about “people” parking in that spot and she says “You’re right they shouldn’t” and then the same day SHE parks there. What should I do?

Mister Condo replies:

K.J., all you can do is complain loudly and often each and every time the “No Parking” rule is violated. The president of the Board is not exempt from the rules of the association and should be reported for each and every time she violates the rule as well. Presidents who feel they do not need to follow the rules of the association have no business serving as officers of the association and I would not hesitate to point that out at the next election cycle when she is running for reelection. If she isn’t going to follow the rules how can she be expected to enforce the rules, a primary duty of the Board? Other than that, it sounds like you have a series of unit owners and guest who just don’t care about the parking rules and how their violation of those rules inconveniences other community members. The world is full of rude and ignorant people; sounds to me like a fair number of them reside in your association. The rules are on your side; well-mannered residents are not. Keep complaining. It may get better; it may not. All the best!