Troubleshooters: $2 sign costs consumer more than $300

Thursday, November 16, 2017 12:20AM
Action News Troubleshooters: Nydia Han reports on Action News at 11 p.m., November 15, 2017

CENTER CITY - The Troubleshooters normally issue "buyer beware" stories but this one is a "seller beware."

Andy Kim wants to sell his 1997 BMW because he lives in the city and doesn't use it very much. He says he walks to work and barely drives it in his free time. So he went out and bought a "for sale" sign for $2. But that cheap little sign ended up costing him $301.

"It's absurd," said Kim.

Kim got a traffic ticket for violating city ordinance code 902-1-A.

"The car was registered, it was properly insured, it was parked legally," Kim explained.

But apparently it wasn't parked legally. The City of Philadelphia ordinance says "parking for certain purposes prohibited: no person shall stand or park a vehicle ... upon any roadway for the purpose of displaying such vehicle ... attached thereto for sale."

"It's outrageous. How was I supposed to know that you can't sell your own car in front of your own house," said Kim.

It seems most people don't know about the ordinance.

The Action News Troubleshooters found a Nissan Sentra for sale in Fairhill. That seller was unaware he could get a ticket and so was Crystal Roman, who was selling her Honda.

"You could be fined $300," Nydia Han told her.

"I didn't know that," Roman said.

Roman said her car with the sign has been parked in Juniata Park for six months and she says she'd be angry if she got a ticket.

"I'd be very upset. I'm not paying that ticket. They're going to have to fight me for it," she said.

However, Roman says she isn't taking any chances and removed the sign.

A city official tells us the legislation creating the fine was introduced by two people who are no longer on city council. The ordinance took effect in 2003.

The Troubleshooters did ask the city if it would waive Kim's fine, unfortunately the city refused. And no one had any comment on why the fine exists or why it's $301.

Click here for a list of Philadelphia Parking Authority violations.

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