Collector Backed for Parking Outside Despite HOA Ban on ‘Class C’ Vehicles

A crafty car collector told Reddit how he outwitted his homeowners association (HOA) when it tried to make its residents only have one vehicle in the driveway.

The collector, u/Independent-Grape586, shared his story to the r/MaliciousCompliance subreddit, which collects stories of people following rules exactly, even if not actually following the spirit in which those rules were intended. The original poster (OP) earned over 19,100 upvotes and 1,100 comments for his post, “My HOA will learn that I absolutely live by the letter of the law.”

The OP explains that all the vehicles he has—two cars, four motorcycles and a camper—all run and are insured. His household also has four people with driver’s licenses. While he normally stored all of these vehicles in his garage, when he saw his HOA rules allowed “only one Class C vehicle” in each driveway, u/Independent-Grape586 saw an opportunity.

In the United States, there are typically three main classes of driver’s license—Class A, which allows the holder to drive large vehicles like tractor-trailers, tankers and flatbed trucks; Class B, which allows drivers to use large buses and small dump trucks; and Class C, the most common type of license, which applies to standard vehicles, as well as vehicles that can transport 16 or more passengers that are not already described in the other classes, according to the Department of Transportation.

However, the class designation refers to the license, not the type of vehicle. There’s no such thing as a “Class C vehicle,” a fact that the OP used in his favor.

“I placed 5 vehicles in my driveway,” u/Independent-Grape586 wrote. “The letters came. I was quickly able to deflate them after asking them for the legal definition of a class C vehicle. No fines paid.”

A year later, the HOA amended their rules to allow as many as three vehicles per driveway. But the OP wouldn’t be deterred, and did some research. He discovered that the HOA did not cover public streets, which had been ceded to the city—which OP speculates was “an effort to avoid having to foot the maintenance bill.”

“The HOA had no authority to stop people from parking on a public street. So I moved 2 vehicles the my very narrow street. One in front of my house, and one directly across the street in front of my neighbors house,” u/Independent-Grape586 wrote. “Now, the only vehicles that could safely drive past my home were motorcycles and the one guy with a smart car.

“It was glorious. My street is a main artery into and out of the neighborhood. Lots of uturns and backtracking for folks to get home or to work,” he continued. “They are the ones who did the rest of the work for me. Complaints and calls to the HOA president resulted in another rule change vote. Now my driveway is open to any amount of legally registered vehicles.

“It fits 9…. I need more cars,” he added with a smiley face.

car collector hoa viral reddit malicious compliance
A car collector was praised for outwitting his HOA in order to park his collection in his driveway.
iStock/Getty Images

Newsweek has run a number of stories involving fights with HOAs. One man was fined after not moving his truck for two days, as the HOA therefore considered it to be non-running. In order to get around the fines, he adjusted the truck to become “loud as hell,” then parked in front of the HOA president’s home to gun the engine to prove his truck was indeed running.

Another HOA was criticized for telling a disabled war veteran to remove a wheelchair ramp. The reason? It wasn’t made with wood of the “right color.” After threatening the HOA with a lawsuit under the Americans with Disabilities Act, it dropped the complaint.

And in one case, an HOA tried to force its residents to participate in a mandatory garage sale with 10 percent of proceeds going to the HOA. What’s more, the HOA demanded people sell “luxury goods.” Residents were also told to use Stripe, a credit card processing app, so the HOA could monitor profits—but that the residents would be on the hook for fees.

Redditors applauded u/Independent-Grape586 for fighting back against the HOA.

“Had a similar issue with my HOA. They decided that I couldn’t park my truck with a trailer on the street in frontnof my house. Sent me a fine notice,” u/WinginVegas wrote. “I responded that I was parked legally and they couldn’t regulate city streets. They stated that there was a State law that let HOAs manage streets in their community but they skipped over the part that it only applied to gated communities where they did the maintenance.

“Got a letter from the Director of Parking for the City stating that only the City could regulate parking and that a truck and trailer was legal for 72 hours and then had to be moved but there was no distance rules on how far it had to be moved. They shut up quickly,” they added.

“A city I used to live in got in trouble with that. They used license plate scanners for traffic enforcement, and issued tickets if the same plate was picked up on successive scans for longer than the allowed parking duration. The court ruled that since the system couldn’t prove the vehicle was in the same spot — just somewhere on the scanned street — it wasn’t valid evidence of a parking violation,” u/archbish99 added.

“My favorite first step of dealing with HOAs is to look up their license/registration. This differs by location, but in my area it is a legal requirement for HOAs to be registered annually. If they are not, nothing they request is legal,” u/cake__eater suggested.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *