Off-street parking or residents' parking zone (SW London)

(22 Posts)
CanucksoontobeinLondon Sun 13-Oct-13 20:32:19

We're moving to London next year and I've been looking on rightmove.co.uk to get an idea of what's out there to buy in our budget and our preferred suburb(s). Obviously the actual houses I'm looking at right now will have sold by the time we're there, but I figure I can still get an idea. I've noticed that properties just don't have off-street parking where we want to live, unless we pay a significant premium that we just can't afford.

DH would be commuting via public transport to central London. I don't have a job lined up yet, but I would hope to commute via public transport. Nevertheless, it seems like we'll probably need to get a car, if only for evenings and weekends. DH's parents live in Surrey, and we'd want to drive out and visit them sometimes. Plus, we don't know yet how close the kids' school(s) will be, and there are extra-curricular activities to consider.

How bad is residents' parking in, say, Wimbledon? (one of the places we've been looking at) I'm envisioning driving around in the rain, desperately searching for a parking spot, and finally finding one about 20 minutes away from the house. Is it worth us going further out into the suburbs to get off-street parking?

Thanks in advance.

CallMeNancy Sun 13-Oct-13 21:36:12

Parking in London is hell, generally.

Quite how hellish depends on a number of factors, whims of the local council, number of flats vs houses (& within them number of children/nannies/staff/carers), proximity of local shops & commuter tube stations, & how big the individual cpz, & how many T roads are in it.

Some may be fine. Others are a pain. The only thing you can do is find a house you like, & drive round at different times.

An elderly family member in one cpz in West London would prefer to walk to the supermarket or take taxis than risk losing his parking space. Visitors regularly had no where to park at all. Deliveries stopped in the middle of the road. Contractors would frequently refuse to work that street. The local nimbys suggest residents use the dual use visitor/residents spaces in a strict rota to allow everyone else the chance to park in an actual space. 4 streets away in a different cpz zone but same council, no issues at all.

I lived in a neighbouring borough, & Sunday nights when everyone came home after the weekend was the worst time. Others not too bad. But frequently had 9am Monday morning parking fines if I'd not been lucky enough to find a space the fight before and had forgotten to move by 8.59.

BIWI Sun 13-Oct-13 21:39:48

Wimbledon is a big place! It depends entirely where you are thinking of living.

I live in SW19 (not actual Wimbledon) and we have permit parking, but 99 times out of 100 I can park outside my own house.

Pachacuti Sun 13-Oct-13 21:44:10

Residents' on-screen parking isn't bad at all where I am (not Wimbledon, but close).

HepsibubbleCauldronToad Sun 13-Oct-13 21:47:01

I'm by Tooting Common and there's no CPZ in any of the streets around here. Never an issue with parking pretty much outside either. Even for CPZ in Wandsworth it's only £120/year.

PenguinsDontEatPancakes Sun 13-Oct-13 21:50:07

You really can't generalise. And no, most London houses won't have off street parking outside new developments and very high end stuff.

Our road (not Wimbledon, SE) was always fine. A friend's half a mile away was a nightmare. You can't really generalise.

CallMeNancy Sun 13-Oct-13 21:50:59

I now you said Wimbledon, but just incase - Avoid Lambeth at all costs. Yes, even the nice bits that are next to Wandsworth.
Lambeth dictates you are only allowed 50 visitors per year. The unfriendly borough, with a roaring black market in visitors permits.

CanucksoontobeinLondon Sun 13-Oct-13 22:19:57

Wow, thanks for all the tips. These answers are great. Well, not great, because they fill me with foreboding, but it's better to be aware than to be ignorant.

I'm starting to wonder if we might be better off joining a car co-op. I googled and they have www.zipcar.co.uk which seems similar to zipcar.ca Anybody have experience, either good or bad, with using Zipcar?

CanucksoontobeinLondon Sun 13-Oct-13 22:20:54

Or using similar companies? I'm not wedded to Zipcar, they're just the one I know because they're in Canada as well. Thanks.

DrinkFeckArseGirls Sun 13-Oct-13 22:23:04

My friends live in Wim Park and they always manage to park outside home. 3 sets of friends.

HappyAsASandboy Sun 13-Oct-13 22:26:51

We used StreetCar when we lived in London. We owned a car but decided to leave it at a parents house 100 miles away rather than try and park it on street in Lambeth.

StreetCar worked well for us. There were plenty of cars around, they were all new, and we didn't need it that often. Having said that, we didn't have a family, so a supermarket shop could be carried home on the bus.

Good luck with your move smile

PenguinsDontEatPancakes Sun 13-Oct-13 22:28:21

Streetcar was taken over by Zipcar, so now the same thing.

perkynana Sun 13-Oct-13 22:30:02

I use Zipcar, as I've got no car - I really like it and have one just around the corner that is usually free when I need it. Use it a couple of times a month....trips to ikea, big shops etc Some parts of London have lots of car club cars, and others don't. There's a website called car plus that's got all of the locations for different companies.

MaeMobley Sun 13-Oct-13 22:30:12

We live in Wimb Park and always park outside our house.

IHaveA Sun 13-Oct-13 22:41:42

Taxis are another option. Even if you spend a lot on taxis it can still be a lot cheaper than owning or hiring a car.

CanucksoontobeinLondon Sun 13-Oct-13 22:47:05

Thank you, Happy. We're not moving until next summer, so technically speaking i shouldn't need good luck until at least next spring, but I feel like I need it now. There's a lot to plan.

BIWI Mon 14-Oct-13 07:32:15

Which bit of Wimbledon were you thinking of, Canuck? If you were thinking of the Village, then yes parking is horrendous - although I suspect for residents it's probably much easier than non-residents or those who don't have parking permits for the Village.

cooper44 Mon 14-Oct-13 09:21:03

Hi I live in central Wimbledon right next to the town and I've never had any issues at all. The only place it's ever tricky to park is in Wimbledon village and even then it's ok you just have to park away from the shops. Around South Park it's a bit more congested but its still fine.
I use zipcar too sometimes. There are lots round here and it's very easy.

Nancy66 Mon 14-Oct-13 10:17:21

I'm in SW London (under Lambeth.) On my street you pretty much can't park after 6pm. Usually I can find a space within a street or two but there have been occasions where I've gone out at night - driven for 'safety' reasons (ha) and then found myself parking about half a mile from our house and having to walk to it alone at 2am.

Parking is a nightmare in London as is car theft, petrol theft and vandalism. My car has been broken into 3 times this year alone.

TheReturnoftheSmartArse Mon 14-Oct-13 10:25:04

I'm in Wimbledon and have lived in the area for almost 20 years, in 4 different houses. I've never had off-street parking and never had any trouble parking outside my house either. Parking in the Village itself, on the high street, is challenging, but I guess it's unlikely you'd actually live on the high street? The residential roads are fine. For visitors, you can buy half/daily visitor permits from Merton Council, or an annual visitor permit, which I had for our live-out nanny.

Good luck with your move - you've got a lot to think about!

CanucksoontobeinLondon Mon 14-Oct-13 17:35:34

I do indeed have a lot to think about. Thanks so much for your replies, everybody!

Want2bSupermum Mon 14-Oct-13 17:41:56

When I lived in London I got rid of my car and did my shopping online. At the time the only place was Ocado. I got everything delivered through them. I needed a car about 10 times a year and either borrowed one from friends or rented one. I found some great deals online through various rental companies. Sixt have good deals sometimes.

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