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Neighbours Parking Illegally. What Can We Do?

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montification | 16:51 Thu 16th May 2013 | Law
37 Answers
The previous owner of our flat and the upstairs flat (it was a house split into two flats) sold the back garden to a housing association who built two houses on the land with no parking spaces.

We, the ground floor flat, have a space at the front of the property and the upstairs flat have a space at the rear of the property which abuts the two houses and is accessed by a driveway from the public highway.

Both the flats have been empty for almost a year and one of the houses at the back has become accustomed to parking her car in the rear space reserved for the upstairs flat and is refusing to cease doing this. There used to be a sign marking the space as reserved but this mysteriously disappeared at some point in the last month before both ourselves and the upstairs flat completed our conveyancing.

The deeds to both the flats state that the houses at the rear of the property have a right to walk, cycle and move their bins across the driveway but that there is absolutely no right to a vehicular access. Thankfully the previous owner of the land was very explicit in this regard when selling it to the housing association.

We have got in touch with the housing association who own the two houses and their solution is to write to their tenant with a reminder that she isn't allowed to park there. The housing officer for the properties has confirmed that the housing association is aware that their tenants have no right to park or even to drive their cars on land.

The problem is that because the road is heavily restricted the tenant doesn't have anywhere else to put her car. There isn't space for 2 vehicles at the rear of the property and she can't park in the drive because it is incredibly narrow and any car left there would block access to our front door and the door to the upstairs flat. It would also obviously block the car belonging to upstairs from leaving.

Both flats have only been occupied for a couple of weeks and we don't want cause any upsets or tread on anyone's toes. We have tried speaking amicably to the owner of the car but she either walks off and goes into her house or feigns ignorance over the facts of the deeds and says she's never been told she can't park there.

What are our options? Somebody we know has suggested getting a parking post put in and only giving keys to both flats but aside from the cost we're worried this might seem a bit aggressive. Also, it would only take a bit of superglue in the lock to cause a huge headache. We're a bit stuck and don't know how to handle things.



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Write her a letter showing copies of the details of the parking arrangements on the legal documents. Then say that you will take legal action if she continues to park there. If that does not work wait till she vacates the space then put a car in it. if she continues to park there, buy a clamp from halfords and clamp her, then take a week to release it. Eventually even dumb animals learn. The more expensive way is to fit some rising bollards in the space to reserve it.
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A car being in the space does not deter this woman. She simply parks behind it therefore blocking in the upstairs flat and blocking access to the bin storage.

The owner of the car is quite a formidable woman. If we put a note on her car (let alone a clamp) we are in no doubt that her or her teenage son would do something far worse to either of our vehicles.

She has been told by the housing association that she is not to park her car there so even if we were to confront her with the documentation ourselves, it's unlikely she would pay any attention. What is the legal action we can take? Does it class as trespass or something else?

I agree with TTT, start with a letter enclosing the relevant information. hand deliver it to her or send it recorded delivery. I would also be copying the letter to her landlord requesting that they address this with their tenant.
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Since the housing association has already acknowledged that she has no right to park there and provided her with this information, should she continue to ignore them and us, who would our complaint be against? Would we be taking legal action against her or against the housing association? Could we, in theory, insist the housing association pick up the cost of any bollards?
If you are thinking of legal action, then it starts with a solicitor's letter. I am not sure how legal action will stop this woman taking action against your property. In your circs I would be taking it up with the housing association and requesting them to control their tenant. Housing association tenant agreements usually have some kind of "good behaviour" clause in them.
doubtful that you culd get them to cough up for bollards but they should be dealing with the nuisance behaviour of their tenant as per my previous post
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So far, thankfully, the housing association have been incredibly apologetic and forthcoming. We have been given the mobile number of the housing officer responsible for the property in case we need to report anything. Would you therefore suggest that we muddle along as best we can for a while longer whilst continuing to keep the housing association up to date in the hope that they can eventually deal with the behaviour? We certainly wouldn't be adverse to this way forward.
my two=pennorth:

causing nuisance to neighbours can get you thrown out of HA properties SO keep up the complaints in writing, with photographs, evidence of distress/inconvenience caused and diary of your amicable approaches to her!

I would be being a bit more proactive than that with chasing the HA for a solution. Phone every time she parks in the wrong place or blocks the access.
Sounds like a bully to me. The best way to deal with bullies is to bully them.

Start with a lawsuit for tresspass at the local court that should get some action. You can also go down the clamping route also get some motion sensitive cameras in the car and make sure she and her son know they are being filmed. Take note of her movements and then always be ther with a video camera when she goes out or comes in. When she moans just say you are gathering evidence for her court case.

Next phase, buy a scrap car for cash and block her in with it and take a long time to move it.

Whilst all the above is going on make it clear that she is trespassing and that she can end all this turmoil at any time by not trsepassing.

Ultimately you can hire a clamping/tow away firm to take it away every time she parks there. The expense will soon start to hurt.

Of course any expense you incur in the above should be claimed from her in the small claims court.

Bully the bullies!
That's a bit dramatic don't you think?

You may as well advise her to steal her lunch!!
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We have to live here though. We don't want to cause any arguments and yes, whilst at the moment they are bullying us, if we went as far as getting cameras, scrap vehicles etc it's not only going to cost us money but it's also going to require a lot of time. We're quite sympathetic that she's been parking here for almost a year and it is unfortunate that the road is so restricted but if we pay someone to tow her car away it's only going to cause a massive escalation of events.

She's just got home and parked in the driveway blocking in the car upstairs. I'm going to take a photo to show the housing association and start keeping a detailed log of all activities.

The woman told us the day we moved in that she hates the couple who live in the other house and that she wants to move so at the moment we're a bit worried that she's trying to use us as her way out ie make us complain about her a lot until the housing association find her somewhere else.
ignore TTT, he's obviously forgotten his meds again. The log and the photos are an excellent idea. If you have the blokes's mobile number, i would be phoning him too. The more fed up he gets, the more likely he is to ac.t
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Thanks for all the suggestions. We'll keep a log of all the goings on and keep on at the housing association. I will probably end up emailing and calling them a couple of times a day so with any luck they'll soon get bored and do something to put a stop to it.
you need to phone the mobile number every single time she parks on or drives over the land
bedknobs, that's what I'd do too!
If you want to be a victim listen to those above, otherwise do what I said. You have to live with them, yes, they also have to live with you. Belive me If I lived there instead this would be over by Sunday and they'd be sharing a BBQ. I always give them a way to be reasonable. They do this because you are being weak. Grow a pair and trust me this will be over. The actions I suggest will not cost you any money, they are 100% in the wrong and as such they know it and you can claim it back from a court after dragging them through it. They hope you don't have the b4lls don't make them right. Wars are caused by 2 things religion and pacifists. Don't be either.
The reason this sort of bullying goes on is because of all the pussy footing about. If you don't front them up they walk all over you. They know they are wrong, they hope you will allow them to get away with it.
Have you got an email address for the housing association. Rather than ring them every time, email them and send a dated photo of said car blocking the space. Anyone flaunting HA rules like this is building up trouble for themselves. It's not her space, it's not your problem that parking is so limited in the. Have you got access to someone with a car who could park it there instead, and pretend that they've moved in upstairs?

You could always repaint the sign - a can of white paint doesnt cost much. It's private property, she's trespassing.

Don't fret about upsetting her - you were here first, you are in the right.
Tora - not everyone is as aggressive as you.

R1Geezer is really appearing again, ain't he??!!

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Neighbours Parking Illegally. What Can We Do?

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