Property Managers Adding Towing Policies for Local Residents

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HARRISONBURG (WHSV) -- School is back in session for local college students, and that means parking in some neighborhoods is at a premium.

It's no secret that students return, parking lots become packed.

Now, property owners are taking that matter into their own hands and charging ahead to combat the problem.

If you're a renter, check your mailbox as you might have a letter explaining a new towing policy depending on where you live.

One particular renting agency, Riner Rentals, says people parking in residential spaces, who don't live there, has become a growing problem over the years which is why they're making their residents get decals and placards to identify who is allowed in a lot and who shouldn't be there.

It's a problem that property managers say needs to be dealt with locally.

“It's an issue whether you're on the residential side of the rentals or the student side of the rentals. We manage both student and residential properties, and there are different issues that arise depending on the type of property," explained Paul Riner, the owner and manager of Riner Rentals in Harrisonburg.

Some of those issues include students using residential parking lots to drop their cars off and commute to other neighborhoods.

Local towing companies say the issue is so bad, they're having to tow cars from illegally occupied handicapped spaces.

Because of this, some property managers are having their tenants fill out forms detailing what kind of car they have and why it's supposed to be in the parking lot that it's parked in. Once that form is filled out, drivers get a placard similar that goes inside the car. It's hung on a mirror or some place pretty visible, so the towing company knows the car is supposed to be in that space.

That's going to save you a pretty penny, especially considering one towing company we talked to charges the car's owner $135 just to tow the car. You can add $35 a day for being impounded on top of that.

However, those who own parking lots say they're not just going after everyone who needs a place to park.

Riner continued saying, "If your car is towed at a location where there's a towing policy, please don't take it personally. Just know that the property manager, and I know that any property manager will tell you this, our number-one goal is take care of our tenants."

If you've got questions about where you're parking, contact your landlord to see if you should be displaying any decals.


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