Communities secretary Eric Pickles has said he is in favour of homeowners renting out their driveways to motorists in a bid to combat increasing parking charges.
It's not a new idea and there's even a website which matches homeowners to drivers, but some local authorities are threatening fines of up to £20,000 unless the homeowner pays for planning permission for change of use. As we posted last week, some councils are raking in huge surpluses from parking charges and it appears that they're quite keen to hang onto it.
New guidelines from the government will mean that homeowners can rent out their drives for a single car without making a planning application provided there is no public nuisance to neighbours, or other substantive concerns.
But if you're thinking of concreting over your garden to create a car park it's likely to be frowned upon by the council, not to mention breaking the golden rule of not pissing off one's neighbours. RAC Foundation director Professor Stephen Glaister, said:
"If people can rent out a bedroom to a lodger then, within reason, why not let them lease out space on their drive? It is hardly a change of use. Surely, if we can reduce congestion on the streets, then councils should be rejoicing rather than moaning?"
Photo by Laura McGregor in the Londonist Flickr pool.