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My neighbour says we can't park

(100 Posts)
nettynan Tue 09-Oct-18 10:36:51

I don't usually post but I would really like to know if I am bing unreasonable here.

We live in a small street - maybe ten houses on each side. Parking is very rarely an issue. No one has driveways and we all have to have council permits to be able to leave our cars there as it's restricted during certain hours to stop commuters parking there all day. But we can generally park outside our homes or opposite or thereabouts whenever we want and so there are no issues.

We know most but not all of the neighbours. One evening recently we got home late and the only free space was at the end of the road outside the home of a woman we don't know.

The next day I was getting in the car and she came out of the house and started having a go at me for parking in "her" space. I explained politely that someone had parked outside my house (which wasn't an issue for me at all) so I had parked where there was a space. She kept saying I can't park there because it is hers. I explained politely that it was late and there was nowhere else and I have no issue with people parking outside my house because the permits do not specify spaces, only that we won't get a ticket for parking in the road but she was having none of it.

AIBU to be annoyed with her? No one else cares where they park as long as they can park somewhere. It is a tiny road so it's not like it is ever more than a few yards from your door anyway. Oh, and she doesn't actually have a car!!!! She likes to keep it free in case people come to visit.

Teetime Tue 09-Oct-18 10:46:16

Good neighbour relationships are important. I think I would pop and long and see her and try to build some bridges there. Perhaps there is a reason for her belief that its her space - was she sold the house on that basis?

Greyduster Tue 09-Oct-18 10:46:50

I doubt she has any rights, in the absence of a driveway, to the space outside her house and there should be no problem about you parking there. If she gives you any more grief, I would take it up with the highways department. We had this problem of a neighbour not allowing people to park outside her house, even though she had a drive and no car. She told my DD’s MiL, who was visiting me, that she was breaking the law. MiL got her phone out and offered to ring her magistrate husband to clarify the point, and she fled indoors!

Diana54 Tue 09-Oct-18 10:49:58

Don't worry about her, if she gets really annoyed she will complain to the council who will educate her, she doesn't sound the type to vandalize your car.
Just keep telling her spaces are not reserved.

nettynan Tue 09-Oct-18 11:30:48

She definitely won't have been sold the house on the basis that it is her space as it's a regular street with residents' parking but entirely unreserved. Basically anyone who doesn't live there can park in the road too apart from the two hour period that's restricted to stop people leaving their cars there all day. It's a very standard scenario and no one else in the street is bothered if they have to leave there car opposite or a house down or what have you. Most roads in the area are terrible for parking and you can end up miles away from your house so we are very lucky that it is relatively easy for us. Legally she really has no leg to stand on. Plus as she has no car I can't see why it would even be an issue. I don't think she would do anything like vandalising just shout!!!

nettynan Tue 09-Oct-18 11:34:49

Their car!!

Elegran Tue 09-Oct-18 11:38:16

I know people like that - don't even have a car themselves, but go ape about tradesmen working in nearby houses and parking outside their house. They say "What if I have visitors who need to park", but I don't think I have ever seen a visitor there. Maybe that is the problem - everyone else has more going on in their lives than them.

FlexibleFriend Tue 09-Oct-18 11:41:02

I used to have this issue with an ex neighbour, they have no right to park outside their house, I didn't park their from choice just because someone had parked outside my house. People get very territorial at times but you were within your rights to park where you did. I'd ignore her.

Nonnie Tue 09-Oct-18 11:44:15

Good for you for remaining cool but sticking to your guns. It may be that she has challenged weaker people who have caved in. She is either ignorant of the law or simply a bully, either way you did the right thing.

nettynan Tue 09-Oct-18 12:18:22

Thank you for your responses. I don't ever mind if someone parks outside my house because there is always somewhere very close by so I will carry on being calm and ignoring her nonsense politely!

Maggiemaybe Tue 09-Oct-18 12:31:51

Oh dear, parking is such a nightmare on streets like yours and mine! Fortunately most of our neighbours are reasonable people and we all muddle through - we can usually park outside our own house, but if it's taken and we have to go elsewhere there's no problem. The only time I've felt irritated was when a neighbour parked his high works van outside our window and it was cutting off our light. He came round and apologised without us having to speak to him and explained that it was only a temporary issue while he had something valuable in the van and wanted it nearby. There has to be a bit of give and take and your neighbour obviously hasn't realised that. You're not BU at all.

sassenach512 Tue 09-Oct-18 12:40:23

You do right nettynan, life is too short to be getting into a tizz over parking spaces flowers

Chewbacca Tue 09-Oct-18 13:04:57

As long as a vehicle is taxed, insured and MOT'd, you can park it anywhere that there are no parking restrictions, no yellow lines and the vehicle is not causing an obstruction. Your neighbour owns the land that her property occupies; not the footpath or the road leading from it. Whilst she may be irritated by parking outside her house, she has no legal right to it and cannot prevent anyone else from doing so.

The police are keen to remind people that it's not 'your right' to park in front of your house - unless you have a designated parking space.

Unless your street is governed by residents' parking permits, any member of the public can park in your street - as long as they are complying with restrictions, and not causing obstructions.

There's also no law on how long someone can park in the same space for, unless police reckon the car has been abandoned - in which case it might be removed.

Bellanonna Tue 09-Oct-18 13:32:18

I think Elegran may have a point. The resident could feel that others have more going on in their lives. Plus she has no car herself. My mother was a bit like that. She would agitate about who had “left their car” outside her front hedge, and be annoyed that my brother or I had to park elsewhere. People can be so obsessive and possessive anout their perceived space and it can at times result in unpleasantness between neighbours. Do encourage her to “report” you if she has a go at you again.

TerriBull Tue 09-Oct-18 13:42:23

Like you OP, we have restricted parking, my husband parks on our drive and I park right outside our house, my car has a residents' parking permit. I refer to the kerb adjacent to our house as "my space", in reality it isn't and if I'm out then it's for grabs by those who also have residents' parking permits, or if outside the restricted hours, anyone else. That's it! we don't own the pavement and the kerb nearest to our house, neither I suspect does your neighbour.

Baggs Tue 09-Oct-18 13:42:48

When we parked outside our own house in Oxfordshire, the neighbour across the street told us we were sterilising the street. He had easy access to where he parked his vehicles. We think he just wanted even more space. We never quite understood what he meant by sterilising: blockading, perhaps?

Shortly after that my very old car died and we didn't replace it, so DH parked his car on the drive. Passengers had to get out first though because we could only leave a very small gap between the car and our nextdoor neighbour's wall. Meanwhile more people on the street were getting second cars and started parking outside our house where we had used to park.

We think the neighbour probably had multiple apoplexies.

Mabel2 Tue 09-Oct-18 13:54:54

We have one neighbour who gets very territorial about parking. Even going as far as asking someone visiting us how long they were going to be there, however, they think nothing of parking anywhere they like. The rest of us muddle along fine, making sure we are courteous to the other residents regarding parking and we mostly manage to park in front of our own houses. I must admit though that it's very annoying on other streets to find you can't walk on the pavement because of the cars parked on it

Bopeep14 Tue 09-Oct-18 14:31:30

Some people are so terratorial about there percevied parking space on my street we have one lady who if anyone parks outside her house parks on the pavement at the side of them, which has caused quite a few arguments with people who couldnt get in there cars or put children in. She even knocks on peoples doors asking who owns the car thats parked. She once put a note through my door telling me that she had every right to park at the side of my sons car as he was in her space and she couldnt understand why he was so angry at her when he couldnt get his baby in the car, asking me to ask him to be more considerate where he parked next time. We now call her crazy lady. There are no parking restrictions its a free for all.

PamelaJ1 Wed 10-Oct-18 08:49:02

Could you print out the parking rules and let her have a copy, in a nice way? Maybe over coffee?
Thank goodness we don’t have this problem, one of my luxuries I think.
Some people in one of our seaside towns have put signs up to indicate no parking and even, occasionally, bollards. all illegal of course but it often seems to work. We would never park there as we don’t want an argy bargy on our day out.

Shazmo24 Wed 10-Oct-18 10:05:03

Is this lady new to the street? If this is the case then maybe she's not aware that people can't park necessarily outside of their house
I would try & see her and explain the situation

CarlyD7 Wed 10-Oct-18 10:06:36

Our new neighbours had this issue - well, they did have 3 cars! neighbours constantly complained about the youngest son parking outside their house (one said: "if my friend comes to visit, she needs to use the space - never mind that the house next door also doesn't have a car and doesn't mind anyone parking there). it caused a lot of ill feeling and the family hardly speak to anyone as a result. Pointless. In your position, I would try to avoid parking outside her house if possible, but if you do and she complains, (a) always keep your voice down and calm and reasonable (it's hard for someone to be angry when the other person's voice is low) and (b) suggest that she reports you to the council (where she will be told the facts of life!)

maryhoffman37 Wed 10-Oct-18 10:09:22

My father, who never owned a car, believed to the end of his days that the parking space outside his house was "his" and got very cross if anyone parked there. It is a common belief but wrong.

Kim19 Wed 10-Oct-18 10:13:05

My husband was always quite bemused by the fact that a drive was No 1 on my priority list when we were looking for a new house. He soon 'got it' and was grateful ever after!

PECS Wed 10-Oct-18 10:14:39

Unless it is,a,private road, which it cannot be if you have council parking permits, nobody owns a parking space. Find the legal info on line and pop it through her door with a friendly note saying you want to avoid any further misunderstanding!

jeanie99 Wed 10-Oct-18 10:18:29

Don't do anything to escalate this issue that would only make your problem worse.
Just carry on as before parking where you can and be polite to the lady if she approaches you again for parking in her space.
If she does contact the council they will rightly inform her that she does not have a space outside her home.