Along with the number of bedrooms and bathrooms, the number of car parking spaces is one of the three standard criteria commonly used in marketing a home.

Stand-alone car spaces are valuable and can be sold if they are on a separate title. Their value depends on the availability of off-street parking and access to good public transport.

The question is - how much value does a car parking space add to a home?

This question arose recently in a court case in which McGrath Sales was sued for misrepresenting the number of car spaces in its website listing for the property. The listing stated: Double garage plus private off street and driveway parking.

The property was a house in one of the best streets in Sydney's eastern suburbs - Ginahgulla Road, Bellevue Hill. The problem was there is very little on-street parking because it is close to two schools - Scots College and Cranbrook.

So the owners reserved one side of a wide common driveway for parking 3 - 4 cars, in tandem, and had placed two Private parking signs on the wall. They were the driveway parking spots described in the listing.

Technically, the driveway parking spots were on a right of way and were therefore available only for temporary parking, so as not to obstruct the right of way. For this reason, the Court ruled that the description was misleading and deceptive.

Fortunately for McGrath Sales, the Court found that the buyer bought the house because they 'fell in love' with it, not because of the parking, and so the misleading statements on the listing had not caused them any loss.

For the exercise, the Court considered the evidence of two expert valuers on the value of the driveway parking, had it not been on a right of way. The Court valued it at $150,000. You should keep in mind that the house had a double garage and parking for 2 cars in front of the garage, so the driveway parking was a 'bonus' not a necessity.

So, car spaces can add significant value to homes.

For my case note on the court case