As there are parking problems involving my personal access and illegal use by persons unknown of my private car parking space, I would like advice about erecting a security bollard. A private notice has already been placed and ignored. The management company have been informed but I have to make a decision. What, if any, would the public liability issues be? The parking space is in a block of apartments.
Your first port of call in this case is to review your title deeds to confirm the rights and covenants in relation to the parking space. Your solicitor is likely to have shared the primary title deed with you when you purchased the property.
You refer to “your private car parking space”. The deeds will confirm if a parking space is leased or licensed to you and if that space is designated or undesignated. Some leases reserve a right in favour of the owners’ management company (OMC) to change or alter the location of a parking space allocated to a property owner and so it is important to check the deeds to confirm the position. Parking spaces generally form part of the common areas and are owned, managed, and insured by the OMC.
In an apartment development mutual covenants exist on the part of the owners and the OMC. The owners covenant is to pay their service charge and to comply with certain restrictions necessary for communal living. The covenants on the part of the OMC are generally for the maintenance and repair of the block and common areas, to insure the apartments against the usual risks and to provide public liability cover in relation to the common areas.
If you wish to install a security bollard, you have to seek the prior consent of the OMC in compliance with the terms of your deeds. The OMC will need to consult their insurers to confirm that this does not negatively impact on the overall insurance cover. If the OMC agrees to the installation, you should request the OMC to install any such bollards as it is their obligation to ensure the security and control of traffic and parking on the common areas.
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We note the OMC have been informed of the issue. This should be clarified by writing to the managing agents, if any, and to the secretary/directors of the OMC. You should also request the matter is put on the agenda for discussion at the next OMC meeting. It may be that others are experiencing similar issues to you. Perhaps some form of parking management would be welcomed by other owners. You may also consider putting yourself forward as a director of your OMC to seek to resolve issues you have.
Siobhán Durkan, partner in P O’Connor & Son Solicitors
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