3 Ways to Sell Parking at Your Church


by Scott Fitsimones

12 December 2018

If your church has a parking lot, you could be earning revenue by renting it out when there aren’t services. We’ve talked to hundreds of churches to learn about how they were selling parking, and this is what we found.

Option 1: Hire a parking lot attendant

A lot attendant can take cash and do enforcement by standing at the entrance. They can also get to know your congregation and let church visitors in for free.

The downside is hiring a full time parking lot attendant is expensive. The average pay for an attendant is $9.93 per hour, or $1,500 per month. This can add up to half of your parking revenue, so if your lot is small, this won’t make financial sense. Plus, a lot attendant can only be there for 8 hours a day, so your lot may be missing out revenue in the mornings and evenings.

Option 2: Install parking machines

Parking machines can replace the need for a lot attendant and potentially save your church money in the long run. They can also allow people to pay with credit or debit cards, which is critical if you’re selling parking to students or professionals who are less and less likely to carry cash.

The problem is these machines run anywhere from $5,000 - $15,000 to purchase and install and can break or be damaged from sun exposure, misuse, or weather. The other issue is installing a parking machine doesn’t solve enforcement. You still need to hire or have a staff member check license plates. Many parking machines make the process difficult by printing a long list of registered plates, requiring the enforcer to wander around the lot, scanning the list at each car.

Option 3: Sell with AirGarage

AirGarage is our website designed for churches that lets you register your congregation for free parking and sell parking to everyone else. It was designed with churches in mind, making it possible to schedule events like Sunday Mass or Wednesday Youth Group. When you schedule events, your parking lot disappears from the AirGarage app, and your lot is reserved for you.

We handle enforcement, payment collection, and visitor registration, so you can be free to run your church, not manage a parking lot.

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