Homeowner’s Associations May Prohibit Parking Cars in the Street
Recently I was asked to research whether or not a homeowner’s association could prevent its members from using the street in front of their houses as a parking lot. Several homeowners in the subdivision routinely parked in the roadway which presented an obstacle to traffic and otherwise decreased the aesthetics of the neighborhood.
I researched Florida case law and found no controlling case. Accordingly, I expanded the scope of my research to foreign jurisdictions. Courts in other jurisdictions have upheld an association’s regulation over roadways and have entered injunctions against homeowner’s to prevent parking in the street. Specifically, the case of Verna v. The Links at Valley Brook Neighborhood Association, Inc. is a case prohibiting street parking. That case arose out of New Jersey and was decided in January of 2004.
In that case, a homeowner parked his work van in his driveway. The association’s restrictions prohibited parking of commercial vehicles at the homeowner’s property. Once the homeowner’s association delivered a letter complaining of the violation, the homeowner simply began parking his commercial van in the street.
The case went to court and the homeowner argued that the municipality controlled the streets: not the association. The court disagreed.
The court found that the association’s parking regulations promoted a neighborhood scheme which was created by the deed restrictions. Furthermore, the homeowner as a matter of contract agreed to additional regulations restricting parking.
The second case in support of the association’s right to restrict parking is Maryland Estates Homeowner’s Association v. Karen Puckett and Chris Schallert. The case essentially held that a homeowner must abide by all restrictions including restrictions against parking in the street. The homeowner cannot pick and choose which rules he will obey.
Foreign case law supports an association’s efforts to restrict street parking. Florida courts will likely prohibit parking in the street provided the restriction is found in the covenants and restrictions.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Houston E. Short
Houston Short grew up in the Central Florida area, and continues to reside in Orlando with his family. He provides representation in arbitration actions for the American Arbitration Association and engages in alternative dispute resolutions including mediation both binding and non-binding arbitration, and settlement negotiations. He is an active member of the American Arbitration Association Panel Review Committee, the Orange County Bar Association, and the Florida Bar. He graduated from Florida State University in 1984 with a bachelors of science degree (cum laude) and received his juris doctor from the University of Florida in 1987 (with honors). Houston co-authored, "The Constitutionality of the Legislatures Mandate to Sever Counterclaims in Mortgage Foreclosure Action," the Real Property, Probate and Trust Law Section, The Florida Bar.
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Disclaimer: While every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of this publication, it is not intended to provide legal advice as individual situations will differ and should be discussed with an expert and/or lawyer. For specific technical or legal advice on the information provided and related topics, please contact the author.