Violent Crime, Parking Spaces

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Q. I recently bought a building in a pretty rough neighborhood. Seems like a day doesn’t go by without some sort of violent crime nearby. Just the other night, there was a shooting just down the street. I buy paint by the truckload to cover all of the graffiti and tagging on the building. I have a couple of vacancies now, and I don’t know if I have to tell them about all the stuff going on. If I did no one would rent. What do I do?

A.
Crime, unfortunately, is a fact of life in many communities throughout Southern California. When asked by the prospective resident about crime in the area, refer them to the local police department for statistics. Be careful not to portray your building as a “security” building or advertise it in any way that may create a false sense of security or safety. If your property provides an increased risk of harm or has had a recent rash of criminal conduct, you may have a duty to disclose this fact to the prospective resident, even if not asked.

Q. Street parking spaces are few and far between near my building. My apartment complex has just enough parking spaces for my residents to each has one space. If a resident has more than one car, they must try to park it on the street. It has been working out fine for years but now I have this one tenant who refuses to follow the rules. He is constantly parking his second car in someone else’s assigned spot. I’ve told him several times but he just ignores me. What do I do?

A.
Your community rules and regulations should specify your parking rules, specifically stating that only one vehicle may be parked on the premises and that all parking is assigned. Ensure that you have the proper signage at the entrances to the parking area. Most cities require the sign to contain certain restrictive parking language, plus the local police department telephone number, and the California Vehicle Code section that provides for towing of unauthorized vehicles. Contact your local police department for their specific requirements, as they vary from city to city. Next if you know the offender, then provide a written warning of the violation. Attempt to serve it at his residence, post it on his door if he’s not in, and also put the warning on the windshield of his car. If practical, take and save a photograph of the warning on the vehicle windshield, because the offender will always claim that you did not give prior notice before towing. If he fails to remove the offending vehicle, the car may be towed.


This article is presented in a general nature to address typical landlord tenant legal issues. Specific inquiries regarding a particular situation should be addressed to your attorney. Stephen C. Duringer is the founder of The Duringer Law Group, PLC, one of the largest and most experienced landlord tenant law firms in the country. The firm has successfully handled over 255,000 landlord tenant matters throughout California, and has collected over $155,000,000.00 in debt since 1988. The firm may be reached at 714-279-1100 or 800-829-6994. Please visit www.DuringerLaw.com for more information.

Contact AACSC

Apartment Association,

California Southern Cities
333 W. Broadway St., Suite 101
Long Beach, CA 90802
(562) 426-8341

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