RV parking in Los Angeles – Laws & Regulations

fighting a parking ticket

Overnight parking in Los Angeles

With over 7,000 people living in cars in Los Angeles, knowing RV parking laws in LA (including vans, campers, etc.) might just come in handy. As rent rises, people without homes find sleeping and living in cars to be a temporary solution; with cars, and especially RVs, you can retain enough of your belongings to live a comfortable life. Some may not have a choice in living out of their cars, while others may be looking to save money or live close to their job without paying skyrocketing rent prices. On the other side of the argument, many of these RVs/vans/etc park in quiet residential neighborhoods, and use their secondary batteries to power potentially-obnoxious lights, music, or other accessories. It’s important to respect all your neighbors – both stationary and mobile. 

Overnight Parking Laws

Parking laws in LA have changed in the last five years, and long-term parking at night may not be as easy as it once was. The city council has managed to tackle vehicle dwelling in residential areas with schools nearby by enforcing strict daytime and nighttime rules.

From 6am to 9pm, RVs/campers must park more than a block (500 feet) away from licensed schools, preschools, daycare facilities, or parks. That is, you can park on a residential street during these hours if the area is clear of schools and parks. In terms of nighttime hours, you can park in non residential areas which are again, more than a block (500 feet) away from licensed schools, daycare facilities, preschools or parks.

parking map

Where can I park my RV in Los Angeles?

Even with the above information, knowing which area is legal and safe can be tricky, which is why the city’s website now has a list of maps for you to navigate your way through parking. Each block or section is either marked red, yellow or green. Red refers to areas where living in cars in this area at any time is illegal, yellow refers to areas with daytime parking and no licensed schools or parks are nearby, and green refers to areas where parking is legal at all times, subject to all posted ordinary parking restrictions.

Here are the individual PDF maps of L.A. proper:

Overnight Parking Map – Hollywood
Overnight Parking Map – North Hollywood
Overnight Parking Map – West LA
Overnight Parking Map – Central
See more…

Other rules to keep in mind include, the 72 hour limit for vehicles that have been parked on a city street or highway to being reported as abandoned, and the restriction to parking in alleys or alleyways at any time.

L.A. RV parks

While these rules are difficult to accurately enforce, another option for RV owners might be to stay in legal RV parks across the city. In LA, you’ll find many with a hoard of facilities like wi-fi, AC power connection, drinking water and more. Payment is similar to a motel or a hotel, on a per-night/month basis.

For someone living in an RV on a permanent basis, it may be best to switch RV parks from time to time to avoid any legal issues. You also may want to invest in having your windows tinted, so as to avoid others seeing lights on in your RV at night. Other parking solutions may include parking in city-owned car parks, including some church parking lots which may even have bathroom setups aimed specifically at vehicle dwellers.

Written by Peter V.
Peter is an L.A.-based designer, blogger and daily commuter. He explores what causes parking to suck in urban environments, how to bring about parking regulation changes, and the latest advancements in parking tech.