Our educational institutions are accustomed to finances being tight.
Schools are used to making the most of their existing resources and looking for more efficient ways to do things, in order to save money and ensure that funds are allocated to the right places most effectively.
However, an increasing number of schools and colleges are now looking to alternative income streams to supplement government funding – and actually boost the amount they have to spend.
One of the most overlooked and underused resources a school has is it’s car park – an asset which could be bringing in a significant amount of extra income every year if utilised properly.
However, this potential revenue stream still remains largely untapped across the industry. Think about it this way: most schools have a car park, but much of the time it’s predominantly empty. Outside of school hours, during holidays and at the weekends – how many spaces are usually occupied? Most likely, not many – and savvy schools have found a way to make a better, and more profitable, use of this available space.
JustPark is a website which allows property owners and businesses to rent out their spare parking spaces online. These are then booked by its community of over a million drivers, with the owner taking home their chosen price per space. People want cheap parking, and lots of buildings have spare spaces – JustPark simply matches the demand with the supply.
Dozens of schools are now using JustPark to rent out the empty space in their car parks on a short-term basis – and they’ve raised a total of over £20,000 so far. In most cases, the money goes towards funding resources, facilities and equipment for pupils which the school would otherwise struggle to afford.
It’s free for a school to list its parking spaces on JustPark. You choose how many spaces, how much they should cost, and when they are available. Add a picture, contact details and a brief description, and you’re ready to go. Drivers searching for parking in the area will then be able to book a space in your car park online – with the money going straight into your JustPark account, which you can then easily withdraw to your school’s bank account.
Schools are charging an average of £7 per day for drivers to park, but this increases to £15 closer to local amenities such as high streets, sports stadiums and concert venues. Either way, the price is usually far less than nearby car parks and pay-and-display parking – so schools are raising valuable extra funding and drivers are saving money on their parking.
St Richard Reynolds Catholic College in Twickenham, south west London, has raised over £2,000 through JustPark – renting out their spare parking spaces to rugby fans when there is a match on at the nearby stadium. The school charges £15 per space per day – half the price of the official match day parking outside the ground.
“The service is very good, we’ve made a significant amount of money – particularly during the Rugby World Cup last year” said Treasurer for the school’s PTA, David Bernie. “We’d really recommend JustPark, it’s a simple way to draw people to your spare parking spaces”.
“We use the money raised to provide those little extras that the school might struggle to find the funds for. Recent purchases have included a printing press for the Art department, brass instruments for Music and a silver cup that’ll be awarded to the house with the most merits.”
For more information on how to advertise your school’s car park online, head to JustPark’s page for community spaces (address below). And to find out how much the spare spaces in your car park could be worth, check out JustPark’s rental price guide tool (www.justpark.com/rental-price-guide).