PROPERTY: BUY

 
Ed Mead
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DIRECTOR DOUGLAS & GORDON

Q. I have been offered a parking space that’s close to my flat. Parking is a nightmare around my flat in Tooting but I don’t have a car. Should I consider buying it?

A. Depending on where you live, a parking space can be a very good investment. Closer to the centre where values are higher the ability to park off the street can be very valuable and you need to look at what can be done with the space. Many people will drive in to London and park their car, finishing their journey by Tube to avoid daily congestion charges. There are also many businesses that rely on their staff using cars, like estate agents, for whom renting a space makes sense. My experience tells me, though, that your best bet is to canvas streets around the space to see if anyone wants to rent it. In the centre of London a parking space can cost from £25k to £100k yet can rent for c. £4k-£5k pa which is a good return. Parking is not getting any easier and so it should appreciate in value over time. In outer areas the return can be even better depending on position. Of course a garage can be even more valuable as they give security and can sell for £75k -£250k. It’s always worth investigating whether there are any other planning angles with a space. If it’s next to a house, selling it to the owner might yield space to build on, or if there are other spaces it may be possible to get planning to build a house or block of flats, so be alive to the possibilities.