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The Importance of Parking When Buying a House

When you look for a house, you’re thinking about where you’ll put everything. But remember one “member” of the family that needs its own room: your car. Knowing where the car goes has as big an impact on your decision to buy as deciding how to arrange the furniture. Generally, though, you don’t need to keep the furniture safe from criminals, road hazards, and bad weather. Here’s how to consider the importance of parking when buying a house. 

What Kind of Parking Is Available?

There are two kinds of parking: off-street and on-street. Off-street means parking spaces on your property, while on-street indicates, yes, parking on the street, making potential parking spots depend on the luck of the draw. Most listings include abbreviated descriptions of parking. Off-street parking can include garage parking (GAR), assigned parking (ASRSV), leased parking (LSD PKG), and so on. The number of spaces is indicated by a number. Ads should be upfront about parking, letting you decide before you ever cross the house’s threshold.

Fees and Fines

When visiting a potential home, find the easiest place to park your car. You’ll get an idea about where future guests can put their vehicles before figuring out where your own car will rest. Look for parking restrictions and decide if overly restrictive rules make things more difficult for your visitors or yourself. Permit parking usually means having to purchase monthly passes for visitors as well as a special parking sticker for yourself. If street parking is at a premium, you might even be required to rent a space. Some cities make extra cash through parking tickets and are notorious for punishing the slightest infraction. 

You should also investigate whether the area has restrictions on vehicles like your own. Parking a large pickup truck in some city neighborhoods can garner a ticket, for example. Overall, calculate the future expense of parking legally or paying fines and decide if the neighborhood offers enough amenities to justify that expense. When assessing the importance of parking when buying a house, money is at the top of the list of considerations.  

Garages, Driveways, and Lots

If a home comes with a garage or dedicated parking space, you’re ahead of the game. But still, look carefully. Does the garage meet your needs? Is it separate or attached to the house? Does the door open and close easily? Is it lockable, and is there enough space, not only for your car (or cars) but also for storage? Check its condition as well. The older it is, the sooner it’ll have to be replaced. Do you have a parking space instead of a garage? See how clean, well-lit, and maintained it is to prevent damage to your tires. Ensure it’s a good distance from regular traffic as well, so no passing cars can sideswipe your vehicle. Driveways are great but you’ll want to measure them to make sure your vehicle fits and isn’t blocking the sidewalk.


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