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Please ensure that you read through the terms and conditions before signing up to any driveway rental app, as well as the parking contract between you and the property owner.
Table of Contents
Part 1: Saving Time and Money on Parking
Owning a car in the UK really is a double-edged sword. While the freedom and convenience of owning your own vehicle are undeniable, car ownership’s ever-increasing costs can’t be ignored. One of the major headaches that comes to mind is the sometimes astronomical prices charged for parking.
ParkingScout is on a mission to help people find the most affordable and convenient parking spots around the UK, and today we’ll be taking a closer look at an innovative and novel way of solving the parking problem – private driveway rental and parking.
How does driveway rental parking work?
Companies like JustPark and a handful of others (discussed later in this article) have created apps that allow people with driveways, garages, or other available spaces that could be used as parking to easily and conveniently rent them out. This is great news for both homeowners who can make a few extra pounds letting out their parking spots when they’re not in use, as well as for motorists who can save quite a bit by avoiding often-expensive on-street or private car parks.
While driveway rental parking is still new to a lot of people, it’s a growing industry with more and more users signing up every day; and to little surprise. Private driveways are safer than a lot of on-street parking options, can be pre-booked to ensure availability, and can save you the time and hassle of driving around looking for suitable parking. Additionally, you can pre-book a spot for specific hours on a schedule well in advance, securing your preferred spot for the foreseeable future.
While the process might differ slightly between apps, pre-booking your parking spot really couldn’t be simpler.
- Download the app of your choice and register an account.
- Enter your destination (a postcode, address, or description will all do) and travel times and dates to search for suitable parking.
- Scroll through the available options, select the best fit for you, and proceed to the checkout page.
Price comparison of the best driveway rental apps in the UK
There are numerous driveway rental apps currently operating in the UK. While their underlying business model is the same, things like pricing, number of available driveways, user interface and experience (UI and UX), and filter options differ. In this section, we’ll look at the reason you’re all here – to find out if driveway rental parking is cheaper than car parks.
To compare the four biggest driveway rental apps, we created scenarios that could represent real-life use. This included looking for parking with and without the need for further public transport, switching between different lead times (the time between booking and arriving at the parking), and comparing prices for different lengths of stay.
We compared the following driveway rental apps:
Test number 1: Central London, max 15-minute walk from destination
In this test, we looked for parking no more than a 15-minute walk from W1S 2EH, right in the centre of London between Mayfair and Soho. We did not consider any options that would require taking any public transport after parking. We only looked at options available within the next 24 hours.
Within these parameters, we managed to find the following number of parking spots for each platform:
- Private car parks (NCP, Q-Park, etc.) – 25 viable options
- JustPark – 7 viable options
- Your Parking Space – 3 viable options
- Park On My Drive – 3 viable options
- Parklet – 0 options available within a 15-minute walk
On average, despite there only being half as many available options, driveway rental parking options were cheaper than private car parks for all lengths of stay. Over a 7-day period, the average driveway rental is close to 40% cheaper. Over 4-hour and 30-day stays, this gap is smaller, but still in driveway parking’s favour.
When we looked at the absolute lowest prices that still met the criteria, private car parks beat some of the driveway rentals; however, in all cases, the absolute cheapest parking spot available was to be found via the driveway rental app.
In this test, JustPark came out on top with the lowest average parking prices, as well the absolute cheapest parking options and the most parking spots available.
Test number 2: Central London, best options that include public transport
In this test, we looked at the same location as test number one, again only looking for parking spaces available within the next 24 hours. This time though, we also considered all options that would include taking public transport (bus or rail), but only if the total travel time after parking is no more than 45 minutes. This includes the time it takes to walk from your car to the station, travel time, and the maximum 10-minute walk to the final destination from Bond Str Station, Piccadilly Circus Station, Oxford Station, or Green Park Station. This has the added benefit of avoiding congestion zone charges.
By greatly expanding the geographical area, we increased the number of potential hits significantly across all platforms, even with the same 24h availability requirement.
- Private car parks (NCP, Q-Park, etc.) – 100+ viable options
- JustPark – 100+ viable options
- Your Parking Space – 52 viable options
- Park On My Drive – 25 viable options
- Parklet – 15 viable options
Our first observation when allowing for the use of public transport was that increasing the geographical area of search dramatically increased the number of available options across all categories. That being said, the outcome in terms of parking prices reflects that of test number one.
Again, private driveway rental came out on top for both average and lowest prices. While private car parks offer a very slight advantage over 4 hours, the alternative beats it on all other lengths of stay, and in all cases, offers the absolute cheapest parking. JustPark again took the title for the cheapest and most available options among the driveway rental apps, with Park On My Drive coming in second place.
Test number 3: Brighton Beach, max 0.3 miles walk, busy season
For this test, we played the role of a prepared holidaymaker and booked our parking 1 month in advance. We looked for parking spaces no more than 0.3 miles from Brighton Beach during the height of the tourist season to see how driveway rental apps compare out of London.
Even with a lead time of a month, we were surprised to see how many available parking spots had already been booked accross all apps.
- Private car parks (NCP, Q-Park, etc.) – 10 viable options
- JustPark – 6 viable options
- Your Parking Space – 3 viable options
- Park On My Drive – 0 viable options
- Parklet – 4 viable options
Test number 3 yielded some very interesting results. For short-term parking of less than a day, the private car parks consistently beat all the driveway rental apps, both on average and for the cheapest available price; however, the picture really shifted dramatically when looking at longer timeframes. For example, we were able to book 30 days of parking with JustPark at 85% cheaper than any private car park offering, with significant savings to be had with Park on My Drive and Your Parking Space as well. Notably, Parklet did not have any spaces available within 0.3 miles of Brighton Beach, and only two in all of Brighton.
Conclusion and Tips
Overall, pre-booking your parking using one of the many driveway rental apps available today can be a big money saver. In all three of our tests, we managed to find cheaper parking available than what established private car parks can offer.
While all four apps managed to provide us with parking that beat private car parks in terms of price, JustPark stood out as the overall best. It consistently provided us with the most options, as well as having the cheapest available options in nearly all the tests. Both Your Parking Space and Park On My Drive also have good options available, if not as many as JustPark. Parklet seems to be the smallest of the bunch, and in 2 out of our 3 tests, did not have any available parking that met the criteria.
Advice for using driveway rental apps:
- Remember that the driveway owners set their own prices and will try to compete with car parks in their area. If you’re willing to walk a bit or take public transport, you’ll be able to find deals that are significantly cheaper.
- Availability changes fast. If you’re planning a trip, try to book a good spot the moment it becomes available.
- Remember to look at the filters on offer. Things like security, disabled access, and covered parking can all be toggled on or off in searches to help you find the ideal spot for you.
- Always read through the driveway rental contract to avoid any nasty or unwanted surprises.
Part 2: Earn Extra Income from your Driveway
If you own a driveway, an unused garage, or any other space suitable for parking, the time has never been better to make that piece of land work for you. Across the UK, more and more people are signing up for driveway rental programmes, either as an owner or a motorist looking to find cheaper and more accessible parking options.
Below, ParkingScout will help you understand the ins and outs of earning the easiest passive income of your life. We’ll look at the benefits of letting out your driveway, the process of signing up, and cover some of the important considerations you’ll need to think about.
How much can I earn letting out my driveway?
The average UK parking space has a monthly earning potential of £209 and a yearly income potential of £2500.
– 2022 comparethemarket study
Your actual income will obviously vary based on a range of factors, including location, parking and security features, and the number of hours it’s available.
Driveways in London can realistically expect to earn £500+ per month, while letting a driveway in Glasgow, Belfast, Cardiff, or Bradford could easily net you £300+ per month. In all of these areas, your yearly income from full-time rental would start at around £4,000, exceeding £7,000 in some areas in London.
Driveway owners in smaller cities or towns can reasonably look at £1000 or more.
Why should I let out my driveway?
The easiest extra income you’ll ever earn
What sweetens this deal significantly is that the entire process is extremely easy to set up and run. Once you’ve registered and set up your account with your chosen app –there are plenty to choose from each with its own pros and cons– there’s really not much to do other than to ensure that your advertised parking spot is available when booked.
It really is that simple!
Community and environmental benefits
When people drive around aimlessly looking for either available or affordable parking, our roads get clogged up, more petrol gets burned, and frustrations rise. For every person who’s pre-booked a more affordable driveway and doesn’t have to spend time on the road looking for a parking place, there’s one less car to deal with. This eases traffic and reduces unnecessary vehicle emissions.
No long-term commitments or obligations
Your driveway means your rules. You set the price and availability, and can stop letting it whenever you please. Have a big group of friends coming on the weekend? Simply mark it as unavailable for that period. Expecting huge crowds near your place for a festival? Up your asking price to match the demand.
How do I let out my driveway?
You basically have two options: advertise your driveway or other parking spaces in classified ads such as Gumtree, or register with a dedicated parking app such as JustPark. While classified ads have the advantage of not having to pay commissions, dedicated apps have massive numbers of users looking specifically for your product. Additionally, the apps essentially automate the process to an extremely high degree, meaning no calls or back-and-forth emails to settle addresses, payment options, or other relevant details. From here, we’ll focus on the app option.
Step 1: Choose your platform and create an account
This part of the process is about as difficult as it gets. There are a number of UK driveway rental apps; however, finding the best one for you shouldn’t be too hard. Below, you’ll find a quick overview of the most well-known options, as well as handy links. We recommend reading through the owner agreements (also linked) to ensure you fully understand the details of working with each platform.
JustPark is the biggest and most established driveway rental service provider in the UK. Since 2006, they’ve managed to build up a network with more than 10 million users and almost 50,000 parking spaces. Listing available parking spaces is free, and they charge drivers a 3% commission on top of your asking price.
Parklet charges significantly more commission than other options. It starts at 30% + VAT for rentals of less than a week, dropping down to 20% + VAT plus a once-off £25 + VAT admin fee for monthly rentals.
Your Parking Space
Your Parking Space is an up-and-coming parking solutions provider that looks beyond driveway rentals. In addition to driveway rental, they’re positioning themselves as a full-suite parking management solutions company for larger clients with hundreds of spaces, such as shopping centres, stadiums, and hotels.
Your Parking Space manages over 350,000 parking spaces, but this number includes managed car parks. Driveway owners set their own prices, and a 20% commission is added on top. While this is steeper than JustPark for example, they offer their customers a price match guarantee if the same spot is found cheaper anywhere else.
Park On My Drive has one major advantage over the rest of the platforms – they charge a once-off £20 per year admin fee the first time your parking space gets booked. This means no extra admin fees on top of your advertised price, making it as cheap and attractive for the customer as possible.
The major downside of Park On My Drive is that their service is not app supported, forcing you to use their outdated website and communicate by email. This significantly affects the user exerience, as you can’t quickly and conveniently check your status or make changes to your profile. POMD would rate higher if they fixed this problem.
Step 2: Add your parking space to the app
Putting your parking space up for rent really couldn’t be easier. In 3 out of the 4 apps we tested, the process was incredibly streamlined, with unambiguous and crystal-clear instructions. While the order of the steps might change slightly between the apps, the basic process is as follows:
- Enter the parking space’s location with either a postcode, map pin, or address.
- Provide details about the parking space, such as:
- Availability of EV chargers
- Security features such as gates or lighting
- Access instructions such as requiring a permit, key, pin code, or taking a special route
- The size of the parking space(s)
- Disabled access
- Covered or uncovered parking
- Airport transfer availability
- Provide details about the parking spot’s availability. This could mean only looking for hourly rentals during certain periods, or focusing on longer-term rentals such as weekly or monthly. You can also set custom availability between certain hours if you need the space yourself after work.
- Set your price. You can choose between manually setting your own price or using the automated pricing feature that will determine the price based on your location and parking market. It’s important to remember that you won’t get that many bookings if you charge more than a privately owned car park.
- Make your listing stand out from the rest by adding photos of the parking space, security features, or access points, as well as writing a relevant and catchy description. This last step is optional, but can really help attract motorists.
- Enter your contact and payment details to complete the process.
That’s it! You’re all set up! From here on out, it’s simply a matter of keeping an eye on your phone and making sure that your parking space is available as promised when you get a book. The app takes care of the rest!
Letting out your driveway FAQs
Condsidering making your driveway available not sure about some aspects of the deal? Check out our frequently asked questions to help you make up your mind.
It depends. If your driveway earns less than £1,000 per year, that income is tax-exempt according to the 2017 property trading income allowance.
Yes. Homeowners are allowed to let one space on their driveways without planning permission. The rental platforms will allow you to make more than one available, but consult with your local council before adding a second.
Yes. The platforms have absolutely no say in how you choose to use or market your driveway.
In addition to having your parking space listed on more than one platform, any additional value you pass on to the driver could increase your hourly rate. Examples could include adding CCTV, security lighting, or other security features to the parking space, installing an EV charger, or installing a cover over the parking spot. You could also consider offering value-added services such as airport transfers.
Yes, but it does complicate things a tiny bit. Typically, the platforms will push the owners to only consider longer-term rentals with a notice period, and you will be prompted to enter specific details on how to obtain the fob or permit. Your Parking Space has a special provision that will cover the costs of replacing a lost key fob or permit in the event of loss or damage, but only for monthly rentals.