If you live in an area where parking is scarce or in high demand, you can make a little money by renting out your parking space. Around here there are several large fairs and festivals held every year. While most provide free parking, the free parking is often a good hike away from the venue. There are several home and business owners that are adjacent to the festival grounds. They capitalize on the fact that people want to park close by and they rent out their parking lots, driveways, and yards. The going price tends to be between two and ten dollars, depending on how close they are to the grounds. If a homeowner can park four cars in his yard, that’s possibly $40 per day. More if there is some turnover and he can park more cars than that in a day.
There are also people who live in the city who rent out their parking to commuters. I know one person who bought his townhouse largely because it came with a parking space. However, he does not have a car. He prefers to use public transportation, his bike, or his feet to get around. He knew from the beginning that he would rent out that parking space. To set his price, he researched what the monthly rates were for the parking decks in the area and then he set his price lower than that. He advertised in the local classifieds and within a few days of closing on that town home, he had a renter. It’s a win win. The renter saves money over paying for public parking and my friend makes some extra money (about $130 per month).
If you prefer to use online resources to sell your space, ParkAtMyHouse.com is an online marketplace of parking spaces and it may make it easier to find a renter. There is a fee for the site, but it’s only due when you rent the site. If you can’t rent the space, you don’t pay. Of course there’s always Craigslist and other online classifieds.
If you decide to rent out your parking spaces, you need to do two things. First, make sure your homeowner’s association or property management doesn’t have a problem with it. In areas where you’re renting for a special event you may be able to get special permission even if the HOA otherwise forbids the practice. But if you’re renting full time, your HOA may not go for it.
Second, check with your insurance company and ask if you need a rider or special policy to cover the cars on your property. If something happens to the cars (theft, storm damage, etc.) you’re parking, are you liable? You may be able to get around liability by posting a sign saying something to the effect of, “Park at your own risk,” but check with your insurer or a lawyer to be certain. A lawsuit will wipe out any money you make.
You don’t have to live near a major city or festival grounds to successfully rent out your parking. If you live near an airport, train station, college, hospital, cruise terminal, or apartment complex that limits the number of cars renters may have you may be able to rent out your excess parking. You won’t make a fortune, but it’s a little extra money and you don’t have to really do anything to earn it.