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Welcome to your constantly updated resource for news and views on the Brookline Real Estate market. Here you will find commentary and statistics to explain the daily changes in the Brookline specific housing market.

Whether you're looking for an estate in Cottage Farm, a condo in Brookline Village or are just stopping by please feel free to read along and comment at will. If you are interested in speaking about renting an apartment, buyer representation or listing your home please feel free to contact me.

Friday, December 07, 2007

What do you mean it has no parking?!?!

As residents of Brookline know, few things get us as riled up as parking issues. For those of you outside of Brookline, I will quote the Town's Overnight Parking Policy:

Overnight Parking: No driver may park on any street in Brookline, or in any Town-owned off-street parking facility, for a period longer than one (1) hour between the hours of 2:00 AM and 6:00 AM on any day of the week unless allowed by the Transportation Board.

Well, this means we all have to have some sort of off-street parking. I happen to live in an 8 unit condo building that owns "two" parking spaces, and I use the term as lightly as possible because I don't quite see two cars ever fitting in them. So I, like so many others, rent monthly in an outdoor lot about 300 ft. from my front door. I pay $150 a month (which is about the going rate) and I'm in a 12 month parking lease. My management company plows (most of the time) and my car is close by when I need it. There is a large condo building with a parking garage across the street from me, so I can decide to rent a $200 garage spot if I wanted to.

What does this mean for house hunting though? So many people refuse to rent parking because they don't want to deal with the hassle or cost of it. So many sellers are worried about the value of their condo suffering because they lack deeded or assigned parking. (For the record: deeded is owned by individuals, assigned is owned by the condo association) We've already established what the cost is for rental parking in Brookline, or at least in Coolidge Corner, which is where the largest demand and highest prices tend to be. To buy a parking space these days you're most likely going to spend over $40,000 for an unattached spot. I'm referring to a spot that isn't really a part of your own property. When buying a condo with a deeded or assigned parking space you're going to see a similar increase in sales value.

Those prices make absolutely no sense for any reason other than convenience and quality of life. Of course, those are the reasons our properties here in Brookline are selling at over $400 per square foot, but let's look at what $40,000 would cost if you were to add it to your mortgage payment. We'll assume for our purposes here that you are going to get an interest rate of 6.75% That extra $40,000 will add to your monthly payment a total of $259.44. Yes, to buy a parking space you will pay at least $260 per month, yet to rent it you will only pay $150 - $200 per month. Why not buy a condo that fits your needs best and then go find parking later?


Anonymous said...

We are having this problem right now. Found an apartment we love in Coolidge Corner with no parking. Parking 2 blocks away. Not as concerned for resale as hassle factor. How annoying is it?

The Brookline Connection said...

It really depends on your commute. I used to walk to the office and to my biggest listing, and it was nice to have my car somewhere in between. Now, I am up early with my dog, get my street parking space in front of my building and my car is close by when it's time to leave for the office.

I've never had attached parking, so it's not something that bothers me, and you'll find that most places in Coolidge Corner have good enough access to on-street spaces that you will only have to walk to and from your parking space once a day.

Congrats on the new place and welcome to the neighborhood!

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The views expressed on these pages are the opinion of the author and any public contributors. They do not substitute for the advice of a legal or financial professional. These opinions are not representative of any firm or business. Please always consult an attorney, financial professional or sign a contract with a Buyer Agent or Seller's Agent for specific advice.