Coming home from a long and tiring day and finding out that there’s no parking space in front of your house is an all-too-familiar problem. Is your neighbor constantly taking the space outside of your home? Do you find yourself asking the question: “Can my neighbor park in front of my house everyday?”
This can’t be legal, can it? Can my neighbor park in front of my house every day? Unfortunately, the answer is yes. Your neighbor can legally park in front of your house, and you can’t complain about it. In fact, the law states that anyone can park in front of your house since that area is considered a public space.
If you find it annoying (like most people would), then most likely it’s not about legalities here, but rather about your inconsiderate neighbors’ parking habits.
Parking problems commonly create tension among neighbors. Before you become hostile towards your neighbor and invite everyday stress in your life, check out the rest of this blog post.
We’re going to cover what you need to know about the legalities of neighbors parking in front of your house as well as what your options of dealing with this situation are.
Can My Neighbor Legally Park In Front of My House?
In the eyes of the law, it is legal for an individual to park in front of someone else’s house. If you don’t have any parking permits on a private road, legally, you don’t own the parking space outside of your home. You can’t also have that space reserved for your car only.
It may not be good news for you, but other people in your neighborhood have as much right as you to park in front of your home. However, while it is generally legal for someone to take up “your” parking space, the act is considered by many as inconsiderate.
One can understand the need for a homeowner to park as close to his home as possible. It’s convenient and it’s safe, knowing you can easily keep an eye on your car. However, there are instances where parking spots are full (as in the case of having guests over). This could force you or your neighbor to take the space other than the one in front of your/their house.
Homes On Public Streets
If you live on a public street, the same rules apply – it is legal for someone to park in front of your house. For example, you live in an apartment near a hospital and someone decides to park in front of your home to avoid parking fees in the hospital. This will be considered legal and you can’t do anything about it.
However, if it looks like the car is abandoned and has not moved for weeks or months, you can report to the city roads department, which will tow the vehicle away. But before you make the report, be sure to verify that the car has been abandoned or find out if anyone in your area owns it.
What To Do If a Neighbor Parks In Front Of Your House?
If you constantly have to deal with neighbors parking in front of your house, you might wonder if you can call the police on them or report it to the towing company. In this section, we will address such questions.
Can I Report A Car Parked Outside My House?
Yes, you can report a parked car outside your house but it’s not as simple as making the call or reporting that person the moment you see the car parked. You can report if you see a car parked in front of your house only if this is done excessively and if you observe that the car isn’t moving.
Can You Call The Cops If Someone Parks In Front Of Your House?
If someone’s car is parked in front of your house, calling the cops to complain about because you believe it’s your spot is useless. As mentioned, it’s not illegal if someone parks their vehicle in front of your property.
Note that if the car that’s parked in front is owned by someone who lives adjacent to your house, regardless of how long or how frequent that is, no law has been violated.
However, if the car hasn’t moved for weeks or months, you can contact the police. In addition, you might also want to call the cops if you are suspicious about the car. For instance, you don’t know whose car it is or if it belongs to someone you don’t know or not familiar with in the neighborhood.
Can You Have A Car Towed For Parking In Front Of Your House?
A car can be ticketed if the car parked in front of your home for more than 72 hours doesn’t belong to someone who lives adjacent to you. In this case, you may call the towing company to have the car towed.
How Long Can You Park In Front Of Someone’s House?
Before you get impatient and call out your neighbor for parking outside your house, know that your neighbor can use that spot as long as he or she wants. You may call the cops only if it appears like the car has been abandoned, as mentioned earlier.
Every state has different laws when it comes to the length of time someone is allowed to leave their car in a parking spot in the neighborhood. Unless the car is clearly abandoned or is not recognized to be part of the neighborhood, you can’t make the call to the police or towing company.
Usually, towing is only done if the car is parked for long and has an expired registration. If the car parked outside your house has a current registration, the towing company will run the plate. If the results indicate the car belongs to your neighbor, there’s nothing much that can be done, except to politely ask the neighbor to park in front of his house or in his garage.
Can I Park On My Neighbor’s Easement?
Easements are rights given to the holder to use a portion of someone’s land for a specific purpose. In our previous articles, we have discussed how utility companies can come to your yard, even without permission and how they can also legally dig in your yard by way of utility easements.
An easement also allows an individual to step foot on your land, if it means that your land is the only way for that individual to gain access to a road nearby or their property. But can one park on a neighbor’s easement?
The answer is no. Generally, you cannot park on an easement. While an easement gives access to individuals or companies to use the land (as in, coming and going to access their property), it doesn’t include the right to park a car.
Can My Neighbor Park In Front Of My Driveway?
Parking in someone’s driveway may be generally viewed as inconsiderate and rude on all levels. Most likely, this will cause tension between neighbors. After all, no one would be happy to see someone else’s car in their driveway.
However, this happens and it causes problems especially if your driveway is blocked, whichever direction you look at. Ultimately, it’s about respect and courtesy between neighbors.
The fact is, your neighbor can legally park in front of your driveway. If you have to deal with this on a regular basis, be mindful of how you react and remember that the law is not on your side.
In this case, the best thing to do is to approach your neighbor calmly and try to settle things amicably. If your polite request falls on deaf ears and your neighbor continues to park in front of your driveway and block your access, then you may need to find someplace else to park.
Another option would be to leave a nice note on their car. This can go both ways, however: You’ll either have a reasonable neighbor that gives in to your request without problems or you’ll have a neighbor who will give you a hard time.
Another thing you can do to gain full access to your driveway is to get to the spot early. If you do this often, your neighbor might give up and no longer bother to park in your driveway.
Can My Neighbor Park In Front Of My Mailbox?
Getting mail or postal deliveries late is a problem for most homeowners, and this happens if something is blocking your mailbox. Parking in front of someone’s mailbox is also generally considered rude, but not totally illegal – at least in some states.
In California however, it is clearly stated in the California Vehicle Code that parking in front of or within 10 feet of a mailbox is unlawful:
It shall be unlawful to park or leave standing, during the hours of eight a.m. to seven p.m. of that same day (except Sundays and federal holidays), any vehicle, as defined by the California Vehicle Code, in front of, or within ten (10) feet of, any individual mailbox, community mailbox, cluster of mailboxes, or United States postal receptacle available to the public. The length of time a vehicle is permitted to stop in front of any individual mailbox, community mailbox, cluster of mailboxes, or United States postal receptacle available to the public shall be limited to the time a person is actually involved in the act of depositing mail in the applicable receptacle.California Vehicle Code – https://www.codepublishing.com/CA/SanJacinto/html/SanJacinto10/SanJacinto1016.html#10.16.370
You can try to see if your city or town ordinance prohibits cars from parking in front of mailboxes. If such an ordinance does not exist, you can take it up to your council.
Problems With Delivery
Some postal services will skip deliveries when a mailbox is blocked by a car or a trash can. Carriers are usually instructed to mark “box blocked” and attempt to make another delivery the next day. This usually causes a delay in deliveries and it could go on until the obstruction is removed.
As what Jamie Lumm had written in the National Association of Letter Carriers, the practice of skipping deliveries due to obstruction in mailboxes “is wrong and should be stopped.”
According to postal regulations, carriers should dismount to deliver to the mailbox that has been obstructed. In most cases, recipients don’t have control over the obstruction of their mailboxes – and certainly don’t have control if a neighbor decides to park in front of the mailbox. That said, these recipients shouldn’t be denied their mail.
If putting a note in your neighbor’s car or anywhere near your mailbox doesn’t work, you can also call the postal service about your problem. Some carriers will cancel the deliveries while many won’t, so it’s best to report it to the post office.
What To Do If There Is A Suspicious Car Outside Your House?
One of the reasons homeowners don’t like it if someone parks in front of their home is because of suspicion. If you find that someone you don’t know is parking outside your house, it can be a scary thing. Before you freak out and call the police, you have to think about legitimate reasons why a suspicious car is there in the first place.
But even so, it’s hard to react calmly and not be vigilant. At what point should you be suspicious enough to want to call the police? What can you do in this situation?
First, you must understand what “suspicious activity” really means. Your idea of a suspicious car may differ from that of your neighbor’s. It might just be a neighbor’s friend’s car left there or a guest’s car staying for long. However, seeing a vehicle driving by in your area several times during moments you’ve spotted something suspicious should alert you.
Industrial or agricultural vehicles moving in your area, or worse – parked in your area at odd times also counts as suspicious. Likewise for vehicles that park for long in business premises that are known to be closed.
If your suspicion is bothering you, you can calm yourself down by noting the make of the car, its model and license plate number. You can also talk to your neighbors about the suspicious vehicles. If the suspicion persists, contact the police. In most cases, though, people would quickly call it in.
How Do I Stop People From Parking In Front Of My House?
Do you have a problem with cars parked in front of your driveway or blocking your mailbox? Perhaps you have concerns about a suspicious vehicle outside your house instead. You would want to know some ways on how to stop people from leaving their car outside your property.
In some countries, people would put items that are considered “deterrents to parking in front of my house.” These would include traffic cones, no parking signs, and painting on the parking spot. Some homeowners swear these strategies work and have discouraged people from parking in front of their homes.
But the thing with these deterrents is that, depending on where you live, it is illegal. This is mainly because a road or street is considered public and anyone has the right to use it.
A better question would be. “Can you stop a neighbor parking outside your house?” The answer is no, you can’t. Instead, you deal with it. You talk to your neighbor and use a polite approach. That’s the best thing you can do in the hopes that your neighbor is the listening type.
The next best thing is to put a friendly note on their car. Still, this does not guarantee you will get the space all to yourself. For this reason, some homeowners make the decision to move to a different place or residential area where parking rules meet their expectations.
Is it rude to park in front of your neighbor’s house? This may be one of the questions you will ask regarding parking etiquette. Generally, yes, it’s considered rude to park in front of your neighbor’s house the same way as you would see it’s inconsiderate for someone to park outside yours.
But is it legal? Can my neighbor park in front of my house everyday? Unfortunately, yes and there’s not much you can do about it, except using a polite approach and establishing proper communication with your neighbors.