Car park management

Our greedy landlord charges £110 a MONTH just to park outside our flat – I leave my car 18 miles away to avoid it

RESIDENTS have been outraged after their landlord charged them £110 a month just to park outside their flat.

Those living in the luxury block of 158 flats have seen their parking reduced from £80 a month to £110 since the start of the pandemic.


Residents of Sawmill Court, Manchester, have been outraged at the price of parkingCredit: James Speakman
Dom Gold, 28, is a disgruntled resident


Dom Gold, 28, is a disgruntled residentCredit: James Speakman
Gabriella Farcas, 54, was also stunned by the rising price of parking


Gabriella Farcas, 54, was also stunned by the rising price of parkingCredit: James Speakman

And a driver from the Manchester city center block leaves his car 18 miles away in Knutsford, Cheshire, to avoid sky-high parking charges.

The huge parking rambles were brought in by the Manchester Life owners of the apartments with 82 parking spaces at Sawmill Court, Ancoats, Manchester.

As the Sun team chatted with a retired couple dismayed by the exorbitant parking charges, a group of Manchester Life staff asked us to leave the grounds of Sawmill Court, who refused to discuss the cost of parking.

Yasmin Mahmood, 66, and her retired businessman husband Nayyer, 76, told how they requested a meeting with the bloc’s management after being told of the upcoming price hike next month.

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Yasmin said: “We live on a fixed income and have been here for three years with parking going from £80 to £110 during this time.

“The latest price hike from £95 to £110 is over 16% and nearly double the rate of inflation.

“Every year there’s a raise and that’s not true. We asked for a meeting to discuss it but were told there was no negotiation.

“The parking fees have gone up over 25% since we’ve been here, it’s appalling. People like us have a fixed income.

Another resident, Sam, 27, who declined to give his surname but works as a freelance songwriter and tax consultant, said: “I park my car at my parents’ house in Knutsford and when I have need for work, I’m going there to pick it up.

“It’s gotten to the point where any sane person just wouldn’t pay for it.

“The prices they charge are extortionate – I would say £50 a month on top of the rent would be very fair, but they want more than double that.”

Personal trainers Adam North, 26, and James Warrilow, 24, are also outraged by the increased parking fees.

Adam said: “It’s just not justifiable – it’s way beyond the rate of inflation and we understand it happens every year.

“There are people who were paying £80 for parking when they moved in and a few years later it’s up to £110. How can that be fair?”

James added: “It’s well above the rate of inflation, so it’s understandable that people are outraged by it.”

And tattoo artist Dom Gold, 28, said: “I pay £1,600 a month for my two bedroom flat but nothing in Sawmill Court is what it should be.

“They even charge five cents a month to park a bike, but when I moved in the washing machine and dishwasher weren’t working.

“Parking I just won’t pay and will park on Jersey Street in a public car park which costs £3 for 24 hours and is cheaper.

“The public car park even has working CCTV.

“It comes to something when public car parks are cheaper than parking in your own apartment and they are equidistant from my apartment.”

Accountant Gabriela Farcas, 54, is another appalled by seemingly random price hikes on the premises.

Gabriela said: “It’s steep – it’s not keeping up with inflation, which is 9.1%, it’s a lot more – very steep indeed.

“It’s £30 in two years so if it goes up again I’ll probably have to reconsider my lease.”

The price spike comes amid a cost of living crisis that has seen fuel prices rise by nearly £2 a liter and electricity and gas hikes hitting people hard.

Another tenant shocked by the parking fee hike is David Loughbrough, who said: “What is the justification?

“I am writing a letter asking Manchester Life how they are going to invest the money and whether they are going to invest in electric car charging stations. I will be writing to the local council member.

“This company may have a brilliant product on the outside, but on the inside they don’t care. The council tax refund we got went straight into their pockets.

Will Caspari, who moved into his flat in June last year, is also appalled and said: “My salary is not going up. Adding £500 to that cost of living is not something you you’re waiting.

“If they said they had done something to improve the parking lot, that would be different.

‘The problem with these new builds in popular areas like Ancoats is that they feel unstoppable as they will be able to fill flats in order to cash in every last penny with current residents.’

A spokesperson for block owners Manchester Life said: ‘Manchester Life reviews and adjusts all parking charges each year to ensure we are competitive in the market, provide good value for our residents and reflect any changes in parking administration and maintenance costs.”

The price increases have been implemented as follows: on July 1, 2021 the charges increased from £85 to £95 per month, then on August 1, 2022 the charges will increase from £95 to £110, which residents have been informed.

Owners say they benchmark themselves against the neighborhood and downtown market to make sure they’re competitive.

They also claim that they adjust the fees each year to reflect their administration and maintenance costs.

They claim that Sawmill Court is competitive on the basis of a monthly charge of £110 per month, citing the following charges for nearby parking:

Northern Group lists £135 per calendar month (additional discount if paying 12 months in advance).

Angel Gardens £150 per calendar month.

Slate Yard is £150 per calendar month. (Discounted rate for NCP nearby)

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Broadside lists £175 per calendar month.

They say the £110 works out to £3.66 a day, which is a bargain compared to NCP season ticket prices ranging from £900 to £2,055 a year in Manchester.

Yasmin, 66, and Nayyer Mahmood, 76, learned that there was "no negotiation" on the price


Yasmin, 66, and Nayyer Mahmood, 76, were told there was ‘no negotiation’ on the priceCredit: James Speakman
Parking charges have been reduced from £80 to £110.


Parking charges have been reduced from £80 to £110.Credit: James Speakman
John Smith

The author John Smith