Michaela Chesin, Banner Staff| Wicked Local
PROVINCETOWN At one pointmanyyears ago, the town-owned almshouse on Alden Streetrequireda large parking lot,and so did a bankat the corner of Commercial and Winthrop streets.
Today, though,in this notoriously compact town,thoseparking lotshavebecome divorced from their original usesand are now part of a rising trendinprivate parking spaces.
This week,aprivateparking spacebehindthe old bankison the market for$89,000.
Anotherprivate spaceat the former almshouse and also the former council on aging and public works building ispriced at$79,000.
Fiveprivatespacesin a single lot locatedfartheraway fromdowntownarepriced at$45,000each.
Theres always several on the market, real estate agent Michael Minore said.
Based on the private parking spaces Minore has sold, residents wanted an additional space for their home, or businesses want a spot for their offices.Hes representing the seller for the $45,000 spaces.
Sometimes they move quickly and sometimes they take a while, he said.
During Principal Assessor Scott Fahles tenure, the highest price for a single parking spacehas been$90,000, which sold last year.In 2017, a tandem space two cars next to each other sold for $140,000, the highest for a tandemin recent years, Fahle said.
Provincetown and Nantucket are the two CapeandIslandstownsto see the rise in privatelysoldparking spaces, Cape Cod & Islands Association of Realtors Chief Executive Officer Ryan Castle said. That is mostly due to the lack of residences providing on-site parking, Castle said.
Private parking spaces sellat a premiumin cities like Boston and Cambridge, and have existed in Provincetown sinceat least2014,Fahlesaid.
In total, there are 122 deeded parking easements in town spaces not tiedtoa specific housing and business unit, according to town assessing records. Ninety-sixare single spaces and 26 are tandem,according to the records.
Thefiveparking spaces priced at $45,000eachare cheaper than other options because theres less density in that corridor oftown, Minore said.Properties closer to Commercial Streettend to becondominiumswith no on-siteparking, which is why the other two parking spaces currentlyon the market have a premium value, Minore said.
The private parking spaces areinaddition toa handful of other parking options in town. Some property owners offer rented parking spaces. There are private parking lots, where anyone can park forafee.There are alsothe1,066 public parking spacesowned by thetown.
The public parking brings in about $2 million in revenue each summer, andis used tooffsetproperty taxes and pay for capital improvements to the parking lots and parking system, Town Treasurer Alexander Williamssaid.
During the summer season, aresident can buy an annualpublicparking permit forbetween$55to$150, dependingon whethertheywant to park closeto Commercial Street and MacMillan Pier.A visitor, too,can parknearest to Commercial Street for $3.50 an hour, orat a lower hour ratefarther away.
Joel Harms and Bradley Horner bought aprivateparking spaceearlylast yearbecausetheirEast Endhomeon Commercial Streetdidnt come with parking.They had tried to buy a space for a while, Harms said.
Its important to have a spot on that end of town, especially during the [summer] season, Harms, who is a real estate agent, said. There are not many public parking lots on the East End, he said.
Its crazy spending that type of money for a parking spot but in that particular pocket of town, you really dont have a choice, Harms said.
Then inAugust of last year, Harms and Horner sold their house in a bundle with the private parking spot.
We only had the spot a few months before the house sold, Harms said. While it wasnt the intention to sell the house once parking was obtained, it did help with the sale, he said.
These daystheparkingspaces are being sold at higher rates than ever before, Fahle, the town assessor,said.
I am assuming itsa function of the overall real estate market that Provincetown is in the middle of,hesaid.
Many of the parking spaces are sold in combination with a condominium, even thosespacesthat are listed on the market independently, Fahlesaid.
They inflate the condo price, include the parking space and there you go, its a bundle, hesaid.
That bundling of a residence with an off-site parking spacepresents adifficulty for the assessors office,because theresno independent sales data on the spaceitself,Fahle said.
This year, the assessor's office lowered the assessed property valueforasingle parkingspacefrom $60,000 to $37,000. The 38% decrease came afteranevaluation ofthe easements withthelittlemarketdata available, Fahle said.
I know some people buy them to have them because theres such a limited amount. I know some people buy them because they want to someday package them for resale of their condo. Theres a lot of reasons, Fahle said.
The real estateagentsfor thetwo higher pricesparkingspaces currently on the marketsaidtheycould not discuss the listingsdue to client confidentiality.
Onecaveatexists, Fahle said.The use of a private parking spacecan belimiting.
Options such as parkingan RV or a small house on wheelsin the spacewouldbebasedonlyon what is allowed in the propertys master deed,Fahle said.
Its not one of those open-ended thingswell, alright, Iown aspace. I can do what I want with it, he said.
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