Any time you drive to an airport to catch a flight, the first challenge is often finding a parking space in whatever airport car park you are using. They always seem to be jam packed with cars, which is not surprising given the length of stay involved in long term car parks. What is surprising, however, is that there is a very sound alternative investment predicated on this simple fact.
Sam Tarling is a founding partner and sales director of Katar Investments Ltd. Katar is a boutique investment brokerage which specializes in selling airport parking spaces on behalf of Park First Ltd to individual investors, who can then enjoy returns on their investment starting at 8% a year. “This is a new commercial property opportunity involving the sale and lease back of airport parking spaces. Park First operates a long stay airport at Glasgow Airport which they own and we sell on to investors in the form of individual specific parking slots,” Tarling explains.
A state of the art on-line booking system and number plate recognition technology is key to the revenue generating potential of this opportunity. “Airport car parking provides higher yields than most other types of traditional “buy-to-let” investments. We are seeing a real growth in investor interest in car park investing opportunities,” he notes.
Tarling points out that the global property specialists, Colliers, recently estimated the global market size of the car park investment market to be around US$12.5 billion and growing. “One of the unique features of airport car parks is that they operate at almost full capacity all year round, creating the opportunity for a very lucrative investment,” he notes.
Airport car parking has, of course, long been recognized as a high yielding corporate investment. However, the approach taken by Park First means that investing in this asset class no longer requires investors to put up hundreds of thousands of pounds of capital. By breaking the investment down into individual parking spaces, available to purchase at £20,000 per parking space, Park First has created a much lower point of entry for retail investors to get involved.
“Single or multiple parking spaces are available to purchase, with a guaranteed return of 8% per annum in years 1 and 2. Years 3 & 4 are projected at 10% and years 5 & 6 projected at 12%. All the spaces carry title deeds, registered in the owners’ name or company name, at the Land Registry,” Tarling concludes.