Tandem parking spots sell for $560,000

BUSINESS - BOSTON - JUNE 13 2013. Lisa Blumenthal entered the winning $560,000 bid for two prime parking spaces behind 298 Commonwealth Avenue. Bidding for the tandem spaces started at $42,000 in the fiercely contested auction. Thursday, June 13, 2013. (Colm O'Molloy for The Boston Globe)
Two prime parking spaces behind Commonwealth Avenue sold for $560,000 at an IRS auction. Bidding for the tandem spaces started at $42,000 in the fiercely contested auction. (Colm O'Molloy for The Boston Globe)
The Boston Globe

Sold for $560,000: Rarely available tandem parking spots in Back Bay. Sweeping alley views in exclusive neighborhood, just steps from high-end Newbury Street shops. Amenities include fully lined asphalt spaces, stains included. Second space ideal for growing one-car family.

In the end, it came down to a bidding war between two neighbors, who took the price of two parking spots behind 298 Commonwealth Ave. from $42,000 to more than half a million dollars—nearly double the $313,000 median sales price for a single family home in Massachusetts—in less than 15 minutes.

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The neighborhood is home to the most valuable parking spots in the city. A space behind 48 Commonwealth Ave. set the record for a single spot at $300,000 in 2009. Two tandem spots a block from the Public Garden on Commonwealth Avenue sold for $200,000 last summer, and a single spot on Marlborough Street went for $250,000 in December.

Dozens of local residents, business owners, real estate agents, and lawyers turned out Thursday afternoon for the auction at the parking spaces, which the Internal Revenue Service seized from a man who owed more than $600,000 in back taxes.

A common complaint of those in attendance: difficulty finding a place to park.

Auctioneer Tim Smith, an IRS liquidation specialist, started the bidding in a light rain shortly after noon, calling the property the “two prettiest parking spaces I’ve ever seen.”