First a little background...
We live in a 3 bedroom- 1300 sq. ft condo in Wisconsin and are part of a condo association with 11 other units.
We have lived here for almost 15 years and we have 5 children...3 over the age of 16.
Each unit has a small, single car garage and a private driveway
. But, due to the small size of the garage and the large size of our vehicles, SUV & trucks, we are unable to park in our garage. We currently have 3 vehicles and have been parking 3 vehicles on the property for the last 5 years...one in our driveway and 2 along the tree line of the public driveway. There are no designated parking spots for guests or otherwise...just a long, wide driveway in front of the units.
Our association held a meeting last Thursday which we were unable to attend due to prior commitments with our children. During that meeting they voted in a new by-law that states that only 2 cars per unit are allowed to park on the condo property...one car in the private driveway and one car along the tree line.
We were informed, by email via the meeting minutes, that we are no longer allowed to park 3 cars in the driveway and we would have to park one car on the street. During the summer parking on city streets is allowed but we live on a busy road and have had a car totaled by a careless driver in the past so we hesitate to park there now. But between the months of November and April over-night parking is not allowed because it interferes with the snow plows. I have asked twice where we are supposed to park come November and I have not received an answer. But I have been told we may be fined if we violate the by-laws.
My question is...
Can the association create a new by-law like this without providing an adequate alternative? We have asked about adding parking numerous times over the past 14+ years but the other owners always vote against it.
Also, can they really fine us if we do park on the property?
There was not a vehicle restriction when we moved in almost 15 years ago and it has never been an issue until this year. We have had 3 vehicles parked on the condo property for 5 years now...how can they suddenly just decide not to allow it without providing somewhere else for us to park? And without our even being at the meeting to discuss the situation?
They state that we have too many vehicles and that it is unfair that we take up space that visitors may need to use. In my opinion, I pay condo fees each month and WE should have first choice at available parking before visitors. The visitors should be required to park on the street for the short amount of time they are here.
We are going to try to fight the new by-law as we will be ticketed by the city if we park on the street after November. I was hoping you might be able to advise us as to whether we have any legal support as well.