Others parking in my paid slot

59 posts in this topic

This is a matter I just cannot get me head around.

 

As often happens, I was out and about yesterday afternoon and returned home around 18.00 to find someone had parked in my parking slot in front of the house.  That only irritates me slightly, but the end result I just can't grasp.

I live basically in the town center, but just short of the pedestrian zone.  The street runs perpendicular to our five parking spaces.  All of which are reserved.  The car park is painted with a nice yellow 'Privat' and there is a sign on the house that states this is private parking and violators will be towed.  Across the street is underground parking.  Yes, violates will be towed at my expense and I have to hope to be reimbursed.

At least once a week, someone parks in one of our spaces causing us to either use the underground parking or blocking everyone in.  At least once a month someone parks in my space.  As I drive a VW Bus, it is too tall to park underground, so I am left blocking everyone.

As is standard, not long after I enter my flat, the door bell rings and it's the person who parked in my slot.  I can never recall it every being a woman.  Always men.  When I go back downstairs, I never hear a 'sorry' or 'excuse me', but rather they are upset with me as I inconvenienced them!  Ages of these men have varied from 20 - 70 and all nationalities and from all parts of Germany.

While I understand that perhaps a person might not have seen the signs that this is private parking, behind the cars is the house door and a huge set of seven mail boxes.  Obviously someone lives there.  But it's this lack of apologising I just do not grasp. 

As I do each time, I walked downstairs, opened the door and look at the individual who is standing next to their car.  They say nothing.  There is merely the expectation that I hurry up and move.  I don't budge.  When they become impatient, I say that as soon as I hear an apology, I'll move me bus.  One would think I just referred to their mother as something unmentionable as they become hysterical and angry.  Often, rather than apologise, they threaten, and this I love, to call the police.  Please do, I reply.  One actually did, much to his dismay.  The police were not kind and actually cited him, but he was unusually rude.  Most just prefer to argue but do eventually say 'excuse me' for parking in your slot.

Why is it so hard to feign embarrassment, simply say I failed to see the posted signs, and apologise?  Are we so involved in ourselves that we fail to simply fail to understand how our actions effect others?  Has parking become a human right that I failed to read about?  

Thoughts?

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My man, on every street you will find remnants of the stones that cities throw down in winter. You pick up four of these. You unscrew each of the improperly parked car's tire caps and drop one in. Then, you screw down the cap with the pebble in it. Block the guy in anyway. When he gets back, he will still have enough tire pressure to drive off. In 4 hours he will have four flat tires. 

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I love this^^^.  If I were you I would not open my door and let them simmer for an hour. 

 

I would also get some huge stickers made that say “i suck at parking” and put them on the offenders windshield. 

 

I love Germany and the culture but Germans are some of the most selfish people ive ever met. Never in all my life have I encountered people on a near daily basis who cut in line, park and drive however they want and generally act like they are the only people on the planet that matter. 

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I know it is an expense you shouldn't have to incur but the owner of the carpark could install those retractable barriers that can be raised (and locked) or lowered for each car space.

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how do the perps know to knock on *your* door?

 

When you open up, do you reveal in any way that you already know why they are ringing?

 

I think I would be a massive prick about it...I'd cheerily ask them what I can do for them.  Force them to say "I need you to move your car as it's blocking me in".  I would then ask them "how can it be that I'm blocking you in?!  I don't know you/you don't live here and our parking area is reserved.  Are you visiting one of the neighbors and parked in their spot?  this is very strange...I just don't understand how I could be blocking you in"  rinse and repeat until they at least explain very clearly what they did ;)

 

no it's not the same as an apology - not at all - but it's something.

 

I don't understand why they have such an issue with admitting mistakes or apologizing.  It's weird but as Adem points out, it seems to boil down to a cultural thing.  On the flip side, I haven't noticed that an apology is expected either, when I have committed an offense.  I apologize anyway but they look at me sometimes as if I have three heads.  I think the idea is that the apology doesn't FIX anything, nor does it indicate that the perp will change their ways.  I get the feeling this falls into the category of "small talk" - something that is just for show and has no real value - I can sort of grasp that interpretation.

 

I do have German friends who have apologized to me about this or that, but it's very sincere, and *not a cop out*.  I think anglos tend to apologize just to smooth things over...different.   

 

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I would have zero tolerance of it.   It's your space.  Your rented property.  I see it as no different from other property.  Ask them if you can jump in their car and come round to theirs and do your laundry and watch a bit of TV :lol:.  No different from what they feel entitled to do.    We have to stand our ground and fight our corner in life -  otherwise people will try to walk all over us.

 

I have a usually empty space here but nobody ever uses it.   I always had issues in urban London areas, and barriers or spikes were normal there.   I live near a city centre and open entry sites round me usually have them - take a look around your area.     I would do that.    We also used to photograph them.  They hated that.   One thing that reliably rattles cages and intimidates.   Rationalisation of false entitlement often stops as soon as there's a permanent record of it :rolleyes:.    The only "cultural" element of it is car owner entitlement.   It's purely a space (and thus money) thing.

 

Where I do have it here is in the communal yard space (not parking) in front of my flat.  What I always get there is some flimsy "excuse".   Everyone's got their reason when they matter more than the rest.   I always do put a note on it or go and deal with it and (because its residents or associates) report it to HV.  With a photo.   Part of the problem to manage is that, if one person does it, others often see that as a green light.  So you tend to have to squash individual instances when they arise.  Whoever is parking in your place is probably telling family and associates there's this great free place he knows :angry:.

 

If you have not raised it with the HV, perhaps do that as well.    See if they have any comments or ideas.   They may be useless (mine is), but at least record it.  And what do the other space owners / renter think? It will be happening to them, short of never leaving it unoccupied.  (Last time somene parked in the yard, I knew it was a removal, which is OK...but one of the other neighbours was down in no time questioning them).

 

Pressures on city centre parking are generally going up (not least as cities clamp down and charge more, which pushes the problem in part onto local residents) and so your issue may not go away by itself.   Rule of town or city life - if you make accessible space available - does not even need to be a defined space - people will use it.

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I'm wondering why you don't call the police every time before the perp comes around. Let them call a tow truck. They'll definitely get their money back.

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18 minutes ago, fraufruit said:

I'm wondering why you don't call the police every time before the perp comes around. Let them call a tow truck. They'll definitely get their money back.

 

 it's a civil matter, not criminal.  at least when my neighbor had a similar issue (someone parked in her spot for 3 WEEKS!) the police told her she'd have to arrange the tow and recoup the costs herself.

 

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21 minutes ago, fraufruit said:

I'm wondering why you don't call the police every time before the perp comes around. Let them call a tow truck. They'll definitely get their money back.

 

Police don't do anything here, it's private property. I remember at least two threads where (non German) parking offenders complained bitterly about being towed away from private property ...

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Great and funny answers, all.  I did one time block someone in and went off for a wee walk and returned an hour later.  The 'perp' was not amused and started calling me names.  I said nothing, but entered the house and went to my flat only to have non-stop doorbell ringing.  After 15 minutes or so, I relinquished, and verrrry slowly backed out allowing the idiot to leave.

@fraufruit, the police can't do the towing. They can't have a car towed from public property.  The only time they could is when, while extreme, if a car was blocking access and emergency personnel needed to enter.  While we might call it trespassing, it's actually not criminal, so the police won't get involved.  I did argue one time at a stammtisch that when someone does this, they are prohibiting me from use of something I pay for, similar to unlawful appropriation.  While the others agreed, the sole prosecutor at the table disagreed, for reasons I cannot recall. 

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Can't you just put a traffic cone or something similar in your space  ?

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My advice for a sign:"This property is protected by Chuck Norris." 

 

That should do it. Great Friday thread.

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1 hour ago, BayrischDude said:

The 'perp' was not amused and started calling me names.  

 

Oh they go straight to angry very quickly.  Hardly a surprise of course.  What you'd expect from the sort of entitled narcissist who feels entitled to just take other people's stuff.   We are not dealing with Mr Decent.  

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Just grab them where it really hurts a ger-man - put a big sign up: 'Gebührenpflichtiger Privatparkplatz 50 Euro'.
If they still park there, they've entered a legally binding contract = 50 Euros or you won't move your car.

 

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This all sounds very familiar - we have a spare parking spot in front of the house clearly on our property

that is also marked with the appropriate "Privat - Parken verboten" sign. We only need it occasionally

for family and friends (well, quite often for mother-in-law), but people park on it anyway.  When I say to 

the offender "please don't park here, this is private property", they often reply "but you don't need it now"  

or "only for ten minutes, I need to go to the shop" or "that doesn't matter, I can park here" - as if the offender

had the right to do as he/she pleases.  Seldom does anyone ever say "I'm sorry, I will move it and park

somewhere else".  This is when I get angry and impatient! If they would just apologise, I would probably

let them park there, at least for a short while.  This unwillingness to admit a fault seems to be a cultural

thing which still irritates me after all these years. 

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I’ve actually been on the receiving end of something this. I was living in Asperg near Stuttgart many years ago when we had a visitor come from the Czech Republic. Unbeknownst to me, she had parked in a reserved parking space in front of this old grouchy geezer’s house as she had honestly failed to see the “reserved” sign. So when she goes to leave we see that someone had pulled his car out of his garage and blocked her car to apparently “make a point” (I just realized he did this after she had left and he then immediately drove his car back into the garage). Not knowing who the owner of the parking space was, we just honked the horn a few times until eventually fatso came out to start ranting about his spot. Well, we both apologized and I mentioned she was not from here and that it was an honest mistake on her part, but he continued to go on and on (some Germans really love posturing apparently). I apologized once again, but then said in no uncertain terms there’s nothing more to discuss and he should move his car or things will start to get ugly.

 

I certainly can understand that someone gets upset when they are inconvenienced and this surely wasn't the first time this happened to him, but I could not do any more than apologize sincerely, and when I realized he was just itching for a fight, I changed my tone immediately. And I’ve often noticed that many Germans interpret being polite and courteous as a weakness, which makes them feel empowered and then are suddenly brash, whereas if you push back then they typically back down. As someone who was raised to be respectful and well-mannered, I find this a shame.    

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One "offender" - a doctor who has his practice nearby - once said to me that I should grant him permanent 

and unlimited access to our parking space without any fees because, as a doctor, he was doing a valuable

service to the local community, we should be thankful.  This is the point at which I completely lost my temper

and embarassed my wife - I have the appropriate German vocabulary. Needless to say, this fellow will never

ask us to park there again. 

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Can you put your license plate by your parking spot?  Some people might still park there but at least they can't say they didn't notice it was private.

 

31 minutes ago, Tammodar said:

One "offender" - a doctor who has his practice nearby - once said to me that I should grant him permanent 

and unlimited access to our parking space without any fees because, as a doctor, he was doing a valuable

service to the local community, we should be thankful. 

 

I would have said if you give me your mobile number and I can call you night or day when I have a runny nose or a tummy ache and you will come free of charge and tend to my needs, we have a deal.

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