A Coveted Car Community

There’s nothing else like it on the Monterey Peninsula. Garage Unlimited of Monterey offers 46 car and storage condos ranging from 1,384 sq. ft. to almost 2,700 sq. ft. of space in a private, access-controlled facility at Ryan Ranch near the airport.

In an area that loves its cars — yet has a serious shortage of attached garage space in many residential areas and new developments — it’s no surprise that Garage Unlimited of Monterey has been embraced by collectors and track-driving enthusiasts with an affinity for a world-class circuit such as Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca.

But what really sets these garage condos apart is that every unit comes with a mezzanine 15 feet above the main floor—providing plenty of room for owners to store their vehicles (with or without stacking systems) and work on their cars as well. In addition, many owners are planning to furnish their mezzanines to create den-style retreats — with a big-screen TV, couch, wet bar, refrigerator, and maybe a pool table or arcade games.

A Place to Hang Out with Friends

In years past, it was common for guys to gather in a friend’s garage on the weekends, maybe catch a televised race or a game, and wrench on their cars. That’s the idea behind the creation of this special car-oriented community — and it seems like numerous owners have bought into that concept.

“Already many people are planning to include large-screen TVs and sofas for sporting events — a place to watch the races — audio systems and other amenities,” said Jon Lee, a soon-to-be owner of a Garage Unlimited of Monterey unit. “I think it’s going to be a lot of fun — not just a place for a nice car collection or to store things, but also somewhere people simply like to be.”

“There are going to be owners with everything from muscle cars to exotics such as Ferraris, as well as RVs, boats and motorcycles,” Lee continued. “You’ll have some million-dollar cars and other collector cars that have special meaning for the people who have chosen to be part of this car community.”

Versatile Storage Units

In addition to the cars, many of the garage condos may also be used to store furniture from a vacation home or college apartment, or other personal or business items. Ceilings are up to 25-feet high with roll-up doors that are 10-12 feet wide by 14 feet high.

The property will be completely fenced — with access-controlled entry gates, abundant lighting and video cameras covering common areas. Owners will always have access 24×7.

High Resale Values and Lease Options

While certainly no one can predict what resale values will be on the car and storage condos in the future, past experience indicates a potential for serious appreciation.

“There’s been a sign posted at (a similar facility in Santa Cruz) over the past few days that says, ‘I want to buy your garage,’ so these units are highly in demand, and I’m confident the same thing will happen in Monterey,” said Russ Foster, who owns units in both facilities. “I think the Monterey area is an even more car-oriented environment than Santa Cruz, and the people living in Monterey and Carmel typically have even less space than we do in Santa Cruz.”

The latest opportunity for those interested is that Garage Unlimited of Monterey plans to allocate a couple of the units for people who’d rather lease than buy. These units for lease will then be made available to prospective owners who are looking for an income-driven real estate investment.