We recommend that prospective purchasers use a 3-step approach to buying a park home.
Find an area you like
This is important. No matter how nice the park is, if you don't like the area you won't enjoy living there! Make sure that there are sufficient transport links, amenities, etc, and that you're close enough to family and friends. You may also decide that you'd like to move closer to the seaside. Properties close to the coast usually cost more than inland properties, but this may vary from area to area.
Once you've decided on an area (or areas),
Find a park you like.
We've found that it works best when clients look at half a dozen or so parks in the area of choice. That enables you to get an idea of the quality of parks in the area and the average prices of park homes.
Make an appointment to view the parks and have a good wander around. Chat to residents while you're looking around- these are your prospective new neighbours! Ask their opinions on the park owner, other residents, the local area, etc. Obviously opinions will vary between residents, but it should help to give you an overall idea of what it's like to live on the park.
This is also a good time to check whether the park allows pets and whether there are any restrictions on who may live on the park. Many parks are retirement parks and only allow retired or semi-retired residents. You should also ensure that the park is a member of the BH&HPA (British Holiday & Home Parks Association) and the NCC (National Caravan Council). The local council is also a good place to visit, as you should enquire as to whether there have been any major problems with the park and/or the park owners.
What are the local amenities to the park? How far away is the nearest doctor's surgery? Is there a greengrocer/butcher/baker/post office nearby? What about transport links to the park? Is there a bus service that runs to the park or near to the park? These are all important questions to ask when selecting a new prospective home.
Once you've decided upon your park of choice, Choose a home.
This step generally comes last in the process. The reason for this is that no matter on which park you site a home, the home is going to be almost exactly the same. In other words, the home itself will be the same on any park in the country. It's the surroundings of the park and your neighbours that will determine whether it's just a house or a home that you love and enjoy!
Additionally, some plots are better suited to some homes than others. For instance, if the plot you've selected has a great view, you're certainly going to want a home design that's going to make the most of the view!
On Kings Park Village we often site new homes that have been custom-made for the specific plot on which it sits. That means that you're likely to buy a home that makes the most of its surroundings.
Accidents do happen, even in Park Homes. As such, it is important to have the correct insurance for your park home. As many insurance companies do not understand the specific requirements of park home insurance, it is best to use a specialist park home insurance company.
Examples of such companies include:
01242 528 844
Park Home Assist
0845 402 0631
Park Home Insurance
0800 61 48 49
The laws governing park homes are different to those governing standard bricks and mortar homes. As such, it's important for residents to seek specialist legal advice when matters requiring legal guidance arise.
Park Home Legal Services Ltd
01275 373 762
0906 586 2135 (Helpline, costs 60p per minute)
01895 201 700
So you are thinking of selling your park home - What can you do to help improve your chance of securing a buyer?
Before you market your home.
First get your home ready to sell; get rid of the clutter. This means getting your furniture down to the 'minimalist' look. Remember the first thing they will see is the home and 'you never get a second chance to make a first impression'. Make sure your home is painted a neutral colour both outside and in. I had a florescent green home on the market with an identical one next door and I couldn't get anyone to view it. The vendor eventually agreed to paint it and the first person to view it bought it. The same goes for the inside- keep it neutral. For the sake of the cost of a tin paint (approximately £20 it will be worth it!
Dig but your assignment, rent book, guarantees and warranties for everything. Have a list of all your outgoings: i.e. Council tax, rent, water, electric etc. Find out where the nearest bus stop is. Due to the cost of running a car these days, many people are giving up their cars and therefore sites near bus routes are becoming more popular. And don't forget to find out how regular they are. You also need to find out where the nearest post office, shop, etc is. Most people looking at park homes will be at or close to retirement age and needing to draw a pension they will need to know how far they will have to walk or drive to get it.
Preparing your home.
This is the first impression your viewer will have of the inside of the home. Make sure there are not 15 coats hanging up behind the door so that you cannot even get into the hallway.
If you only have two of you living in the home you do not need four armchairs and a 3 seater settee. It will only make your living room look unnecessarily cluttered. Do you really need a sideboard and a writing desk etc? I had to get rid of over 1/3 of the furniture in my house before I could sell it. All I did was to put it in storage and it didn't cost the earth. I paid £9.00 a week for a container the size of a transit van. Position the furniture around the edge of the rooms where possible, otherwise it can divide a room and makes it look a lot smaller than it is.
If you have an area designed as an eating area you must show it as one. A table and four chairs is all you need.
The smell of coffee/bread is a good one (but a little cliched), but more important is to leave the work surfaces clean and put away the pans, scales, cleaning equipment, today's lunch etc. Make sure the lunch smells have gone and the bin is outside and the sink is clean and smell free. This cannot be overemphasized. The smell of some cooked vegetables can be very off-putting! Show people any integral appliances like the washing machine, fridge/freezer etc. The purpose of them being integrated is to hide them but you would be surprised how many people do not realise that they are not cupboards and go away wondering how people wash their clothes.
If you have a second room which you use as a hobbies room, it is always a good idea to change it back into a bedroom for selling. In my experience, they will probably do with it exactly as you have, but the best way of maximizing its potential is by putting a double bed back in. A lot of rooms do not look like they will take a double bed until you put one in.
Obviously the bathroom should be clean and smell fresh. Put the toilet seat down and make sure the shower curtain is tied well back to stop it looking darker than necessary. Tidy all the cosmetics, shaving equipment, bubble bath etc away and only have a few ornaments. Try to have plain neutral coloured floor mats and shower curtains.
No matter what the size of your garden is you must make the most of it. Generally a lawn will look bigger than a patio. A patio or hardstanding area can be improved with pots of flowers and shrubs (please make sure the buyer does understand if they are not included in the sale price). The homes external appearance can be improved in the summer by hanging baskets. Have a good look around the garden- weed the drive, spray the moss, move the pile of rubbish/broken wheel barrow etc.
All a rule, anything that is already growing in a garden should really stay and be included in the sale price. If you do have a special rose bush or plant you would quite to take please ensure you make it very clear you will be removing the plant. You would be surprised how a few moments of care and careful planning at this stage can avoid losing a sale at a later stage.
The aim is to make your home feel as light and airy as possible. If you have a lovely outlook overlooking fields, bin your net curtains. In my experience, net curtains can artificially darken a room. lf you have blinds make sure they are up and make sure curtains are well tied back to maximise the light as well.
Have a look at your home from a potential buyer's point of view. Walk around your home and if there are any dark corners, try to hide them either with a small desk lamp, standard lamp, uplighter etc.
If it's a grey day make sure you leave all the lights on.
If it is possible, move your car off your drive so your prospective viewers have somewhere immediate to park. I know how frustrating it is if I have to spend 10 minutes trying to find a space whilst trying not to wind the neighbours up by blocking anyone in or parking in anyone else's space. Explain/show where their visitors can park.
Don't get me wrong (I have two dogs) but in my experience it is best not to have any pets in the house for viewings. Get your partner/friend to sit with them in the garden or take them for a walk. I have had feedback from a viewing I did over 10 years ago, which consisted of 'I have no idea what the home looked like because all I can remember was trying to stop a wolf from attacking me- please do not send me any information on houses where dogs reside, I was absolutely petrified!'. You would also be surprised how many people seem to have allergies to pet's fur, so keep them out. Once they are out, pick up their toys (yes I know they usually have more than the grandchildren) then give the home a quick spray with 'Febreze', which seems to me to be the best for getting rid of pet's smells.
Greet and introduce yourself/your partner. Make sure the visitors start from the hallway if you have one. The layout of a home is much easier to remember if you start from the front door.
Show your prospective purchaser into each room and then stand behind them by the door. They came to see the home and it will look much bigger if you are not in the centre of it. Point out things but please let them absorb the room- silence is not a bad thing. It gives them a chance to ask questions and talk to each other. Something may come up which may make or break the sale, purely by your answer. Don't point out obvious things like the windows but try and be helpful by pointing out the things they may not see, i.e. The gas fire has a back boiler, double glazing, the home is centrally heated, there is a built in wardrobe etc. Remember when you bought the home what was a pleasant surprise and what was a shock...
Once they have been around the home give them the opportunity to have a wander around on their own. Just put yourself in the hallway so you can still see them but they can talk freely. Go back to the largest room in the house to talk, usually the living room. Sit them down and ask them if they would like a cup of tea or coffee. You must give them the opportunity to ask any questions. If you have prepared correctly, you will have all the information ready about ground rent, services, bills etc.
Selling an empty home
Make sure the house is warm- there is nothing less welcoming than walking into a freezing cold house when it is actually warmer when you are stood outside! If you are leaving an empty house it is always a good idea to leave the heating on low anyway, if just to stop your pipes from freezing. Make sure you leave the electric switched on, nothing worse than trying to do a viewing in the dark with a torch! Leave an air freshener in a couple of the rooms and leave some doors/windows open just before the viewing for air to circulate.
The BH&HPA is the only organisation which works exclusively for the benefit of park business. It was created by park owners with the sole objective of serve the parks industry.
For over 50 years, park owners and managers themselves have set the Association's strategy, through the democratic election of industry members to serve on the Association's Board of Directors. Currently, over 2,100 park owners and managers are in BH&HPA membership, representing more than 2,700 park businesses throughout the British Isles.
BH&HPA's influence is wide and it is automatically consulted by government on all new, or changes to, legislation affecting park business. The Association is very pro-active in its work to improve the regulatory environment in which parks operate.
The Gold Shield Ten Year Warranty Scheme provides purchasers of new park homes with total peace of mind. Gold Shield was launched in 1987 as a statement of confidence in the quality and durability of park homes and there are currently nearly 950 parks registered with the scheme and over 10,000 park homes are covered.
The Gold Shield Ten Year Warranty is managed by a Board of Trustees from the Park Home Industry and administered by the National Park Homes Council. Gold Shield operates an independent financial reserve, financed by the park home manufacturers, which ensures that homes registered under the warranty benefit from full structural cover for a ten year period.
The Gold Shield Warranty is available FREE OF CHARGE to park home owners. These benefits are provided alongside and in addition to your purchaser's rights under the law. Your responsibility is to ensure that you take good care of your home, including maintaining regularly the coated exterior surfaces, in accordance with the manufacturer's recommendations. Gold Shield is a warranty to cover rectification work in the unlikely event of a failure or defect in the structure of your home for a period of ten years. Decorations, appliances and furnishings, purchased as part of your home originally, are also covered for the initial period of the warranty as shown in the section 'What does Gold Shield cover'.
How do I obtain Gold Shield cover?
BUY YOUR HOME FROM A GOLD SHIELD REGISTERED PARK. Your first step is to confirm with a park manager that the park is registered with Gold Shield before you purchase your home. This ensures that the home complies with BS 3632, a British Standard which certifies that the home is suitable for year round occupation and that it is sited professionally in accordance with the exacting requirements of Gold Shield.
How can I register my home?
When you purchase your home you will receive a Purchaser's Warranty Application Form. You and the vendor, normally the park owner, will complete the form and send it to Gold Shield. The vendor will also give you a Purchaser's Warranty Agreement. Gold Shield will send you a Warranty Certificate confirming your cover, to keep with your Agreement.
Can the cover be transferred?
If the home is sold during the first ten years, the remaining un-expired years may be transferred to a new owner. A change of ownership form, on the reverse side of the Purchaser's Warranty Certificate, is completed and returned to Gold Shield. A new Purchaser's Warranty Certificate is then issued.
What does Gold Shield cover?
Year One - During the first year, your new park home will be fully covered by the warranty to include the whole structure of the home and every part, component, fixture and fitting.
Year Two - The second year of the warranty provides you with a similar level of cover as year one, with the exclusion of any fault or defect arising from central heating boilers and controls, any electrical or gas installation with moving parts, soft furnishings, floor coverings and internal decoration. Years Three to Ten - Years three to ten provide you with protection against any major defect in the structure of your home (the load bearing parts of its floor, walls and roof) Exclusions are specified in detail in the Park Home Purchaser's Warranty Agreement. Gold Shield is not an insurance policy and does not cover risks normally associated with home insurance, such as theft, fire and accidental damage. You should ensure that you are covered against these risks with a reputable insurer.
The Park Homes Charter has been drawn up jointly by the resident's associations, British Park Home Residents Association, Independent Park Home Advisory Service, National Association for Park Home Residents and the industry trade associations, British Holiday & Home Parks Association and the National Park Homes Council and in consultation with the Department of the Environment, Transport and the Regions. (For addresses, see contact list at the end of the Charter)
The Charter has been drawn up to help the home owner and the park owner to understand and use the law in a fair and even way. The Charter does not affect the statutory rights of any party; it explains those rights and the obligations of each party. Only the Courts can give a definitive ruling on questions of law.
The Charter recognises that the park owner and the home owner share the same interest; a well-run Park Home Estate where the benefits of park home living can be enjoyed and the purchase of a park home is secure for the future.
Members of the British Holiday & Home Parks Association (BH&HPA) and the National Park Homes Council (NPHC) shall comply with the Mobile Home Act 1983 and with this Charter and the Associations will apply their disciplinary procedures against any members who are shown to have breached the Charter.
As the owner or prospective owner of a park home, you may be aware the law already protects your security and peace of mind. The law gives you, subject to certain conditions:
• The right to a Written Agreement under the Mobile Home Act 1983.
• Security of tenure
• Rights concerning the inheritance of your home
• The right to give your home to a member of your family
• The right to sell your home on the park
When considering buying a park home
On all the BH&HPA and/or NPHC member parks, you have the right to employ an independent surveyor to have the park home surveyed. You should make sure the surveyor you use has experience of park homes.
On all BH&HPA and/or NPHC member parks, you have the right and are encouraged to tour the park unaccompanied and to meet and talk to existing park home owners.
You should enquire from the trade associations, whether or not the park is in BH&HPA and/or NPHC membership and whether, therefore, this Charter automatically applies should you proceed with your purchase. Failing that you should ask if the Charter applies.
When you decide to buy a park home from the park owner
You have the right to take independent advice on your purchase and the documents offered should you wish to do so.
Before any final commitment is made, park owners in the BH&HPA and/or NPHC membership will give the purchaser an information package to take away to help with the decision making process. This will include:-
• A copy of the Written Statement complying with the Mobile Home Act 1983 between the home owner and park owner, to study before you make the commitment. You will find that the agreement normally consists of four separate parts numbered (i) to (iv). You should make sure you fully understand and are satisfied with the Agreement and especially the provisions of Part IV (known as the Express Terms), which are individual to the park concerned.
• A copy of the Park Rules which help with the good management of the park and safeguard home owner's interests.
• A copy of Housing Booklet, 'Mobile Homes - a Guide for Residents and Site Owners', produced by the Department of the Environment, Transport and the Regions and a copy of the Charter.
The park owner in BH&HPA and/or NPHC membership will be pleased to answer your questions and will endeavour to provide any information you require. In any event, the park owner should explain:-
• The total cost of buying the home fully sited on the park, in writing. A breakdown for insurance purposes shall be given on request.
• The amount of pitch fee to be charged, how and when it is reviewed.
• All other services provided by the park owner such as water, sewerage, gas, electricity standing charges.
• Any Park Rules or special provisions (e.g. that it is a retirement park or requirements regarding pets or animals).
The Local Authority issues a Site Licence to the park owner. All BH&HPA and/or NPHC member park owners must display a copy of their site licence and attached conditions, which shall also be made available on request.
The licence requires the park owner to observe a number of standards which apply to the park, relating for example to health and safety including fire safety, electrical installations, water supply, sanitation, refuse disposal, the spacing between homes, sheds, porches and parking arrangements. If you have any concerns regarding the site licence, you should discuss these with the park owner.
Park owners in BH&HPA and/or NPHC membership will draw your attention to the park owner's entitlement to a transfer fee (commission) if you sell your home and assign the agreement on the park. The rate for this transfer fee will not exceed such rate as may be specified by an order made by the Secretary of State, currently 10%.
You should check that the home complies with the park's site licence conditions. If it does not, the park owner may be able to offer advice on this subject.
Park owner members of the BH&HPA and/or NPHC shall ensure that two originals of the agreement (known as the Written Statement under the Mobile Home Act 1983) are prepared; one for the home owner to keep and the other for the park owner. The park owner and the resident should sign each copy and their signatures should be counter-signed and witnessed.
When you decide to buy from an existing home owner on the park When you buy from an existing home owner on the park, the agreement with the park owner must be transferred to you without alteration in the terms and conditions. You will not be entitled to a new or different agreement. Therefore, you should make sure you understand the terms of the agreement which sets out the rights and responsibilities you are taking on as a home owner including the current pitch fee that applies to that agreement.
If you are considering the purchase of an old park home, the park owner in BH&HPA and/or NPHC membership will advise you in writing of any possible issues that might limit your security of tenure. Your agreement could be brought to an end if a Court is satisfied that the home is having a detrimental effect on the park. The section of the Charter headed 'Bringing the Agreement to an End' contains further advice.
IF YOU ARE IN ANY DOUBT AT ALL ABOUT THE PURCHASE, TAKE INDEPENDENT LEGAL ADVICE AND DO NOT PROCEED UNTIL YOU ARE SATISFIED.
When living on a park home
• You have the right to the quiet enjoyment of your home and the amenities of the park.
• You have the right to the protection and benefits of the park rules.
• On a BH&HPA and/or NPHC member park, you have the right to receive normal household deliveries directly to your home from suppliers of your own choice. However, a degree of common sense is required. If for example, the lorries used by gas suppliers are too heavy for the park roads, then deliveries should be made by hand or by using a trolley to avoid costly damage to the park infrastructure. In such circumstances, the park owner shall provide reasons in writing.
• All BH&HPA and/or NPHC member park owners shall maintain the common areas of the park for which they are responsible.
• All BH&HPA and/or NPHC member park owners shall respect the peace, privacy and rights of park home owners.
• All BH&HPA and/or NPHC member park owners shall adhere to the provision of the 1983 Mobile home Act, this Charter and meet their responsibilities under their agreements with home owners.
• Park homes are normally connected to all services. On a BH&HPA and/or NPHC member park, you may connect your home to any further mains services which become available, provided this is practical and on payment of all associated costs.
• You have the right to establish or apply for membership of any resident's association or social club on the park. A democratic and fully representative resident's association can provide a valuable forum for home owners and make for easier communications between the park owner and the home owner.
• A change of ownership of the park will not affect your statutory rights or those contained within your agreement. Good communications between residents and the park owner is essential to ensure your park is well managed and a happy place to live. It is in your interest to inform the park owner should you have any concerns relating to the park.
In order to ensure your park is a pleasant environment in which to live, you should respect the peace, privacy and rights of your neighbours. You should make sure that you understand and meet your responsibilities as a home owner.
Your park home is a valuable asset and one which should be looked after. You should make sure you are fully acquainted with the Manufacturer's maintenance recommendations. As a home owner, you are responsible for the maintenance and upkeep of the home and the designated garden area, in accordance with the rules of the park.
If permitted by your agreement with the park owner, should you wish to make improvements or changes, which alter the appearance of your home or garden area (e.g. the erection of a porch, extension, shed, garage or fence etc) you are responsible for obtaining the park owner's written consent in advance. 'Guidance Notes for Park Home Refurbishment' are available from the park owner or from the BH&HPA and NPHC.
In the interest of security and to avoid any misunderstanding, it is advisable to inform the park owner in writing if you are going to be away from the home for a long period. If your park home ceases to be your only or main residence, the park owner may apply to the Court for permission to terminate your agreement
Pitch fee reviews
You can expect the pitch fee to be reviewed on an annual basis, normally in line with inflation. Details of the factors taken into consideration in a pitch fee review should be in the express terms of your agreement. The pitch fee normally covers routine repairs and maintenance to the park. Where the pitch fee increase will be above the rate of inflation, a BH&HPA and/or NPHC member park owner will consult with the home owners and explain the circumstances, giving reasonable advance notice.
A BH&HPA and/or NPHC member park owner will clearly explain all other factors including changes in legislation, which are taken into account in the review of the pitch fee. When reviewing the pitch fees of existing park home owners, the park owner will not take into account the expenditure in development for new homes, except where that expenditure also benefits existing residents. You may then expect the increase to be borne partly by the park owner and partly by existing residents.
The park owner will, on request, separately identify charges for mains services (gas, electricity, water or sewage as appropriate) where these are included in the pitch fee. Either these charges will not exceed the controlled tariff applicable, or the park owner will justify the charges made with supporting evidence. A Pitch Fee Arbitration Scheme, approved by the Department of the Environment, Transport and the Regions and operated by the Institute of Arbitrators, is available as a low cost alternative to resolving disputes in Court, if your park is a member of the BH&HPA or NPHC.
If you decide to sell your home
You have the right to sell your home, either privately or through an estate agent or to the park owner.
Park owners in membership of BH&HPA and/or NPHC will permit one \"For Sale\" notice to be displayed in the window of a home for sale, provided that it does not exceed A4 size (210mm x 297mm)
All new agreement issued under this Charter shall not place an obligation on the park home owner to sell the park home to the park owner. Because of the unique partnership which exists between the park owner and the home owner, the law states that where the occupier sells the home and assigns the agreement, the park owner shall be entitled to receive a transfer fee (commission) on the sale. The rate shall not exceed such rate as may be specified by an order made by the Secretary of State: currently 10%. The transfer fee is not comparable with commission payments made to Estate Agents etc. Rather, it reflects the fact that the pitch and the amenities of the park add to the resale value of the home. Transfer fees supplement the income the park owner received from pitch fees; without them, pitch fees would have to be higher.
Considerable investment is necessary to develop and maintain a licensed park home estate. A reasonable return on this investment is essential to ensure that the park continues as a viable concern in the interests of both the home owner and the park owner.
Parts 1, 11 and 111 of your agreement under the Mobile Homes Act 1983 are fixed by law and state your statutory rights. Part 1V, called the express terms, contains information relevant to your park and may vary as circumstances vary from park to park.
These describe, for example, the legal relationship between and the obligations of the home owner and the park owner. They provide for the maintenance and upkeep of the park by the park owners as well as the pitch area, garden and park home by its owner. They state when and on what basis the pitch fee can be reviewed, what to do when a home is sold and when a park home may be moved from its pitch.
Park Owners can prepare and issue their own express terms but many choose to use the model form issued by BH&HPA and NPHC.
When you buy a park home from an existing home owner, you will be bound by the express terms of their agreement with the park owner, that will be that will be transferred to you- therefore it is important to make sure you fully understand your rights and obligations, before you purchase. When you buy a park home from the park owner, it is equally important to ensure you understand the terms of the agreement proposed to you, negotiate these with the park owner if you are not entirely satisfied and do not proceed with the purchase unless you are happy with the terms of the agreement under which your home will be sited on the park.
REMEMBER, IF YOU ARE IN ANY DOUBT AS TO YOUR LEGAL POSITION, YOU SHOULD SEEK INDEPENDENT LEGAL ADVICE BEFORE YOU PURCHASE.
Bringing your agreement to an end
You can bring your agreement to an end and remove your home from the park by giving 28 days written notice to the park owner. When this happens, you are entitled to the return of any unexpired pitch fees paid in advance. However, a park owner wishing to end the agreement has to apply to the County Court for permission, This can only happen if the Court is satisfied of one or more of the following:-
1. That the home owner has broken a term of the agreement and has not put this right when asked to do so:-
The most common way of breaching the agreement is not to pay the pitch fees (to the extent that they are not in dispute) on time. Recommended practice for the park owner is to investigate with the home owner why they are behind with their pitch fees and to try to agree a timetable for payment of the arrears. It may be helpful to refer the home owner to a debt counselling service such as that offered by the Citizen's Advice Bureau. Proceedings in court should only be used as a last resort. A minimum of 28 days notice must be given. The court will only give leave for termination if it is satisfied that it is reasonable to do so.
It will sometimes be necessary for the park owner to take action against a home owner in the interests of other home owners and good management. Again court action is a last resort when other ways of resolving the problem have failed.
2. That the home owner is not occupying the home as his/her only or main place of residence:
Park owners should make sure the home owner is living somewhere else and is not merely temporarily absent from home for any reason, before proceeding to court. It is important, therefore, that the home owner should advise the park owner in writing of any prolonged period of absence in order to avoid misunderstandings. Where possible, the park owner and home owner should discuss the question before proceeding to court.
3. That the home, having regard to the age and condition, is detrimental to the amenity of the park, or is likely to become detrimental in the near future:
Very old and unsightly park homes can be quite out of place on a park and the law recognises this. The way the law works is to require the park owner to show that a home is having a detrimental effect on the quality or pleasantness of a park, because of its age and condition. It is not enough for a home simply to be old, it must also be detrimental because of its condition. Normally the home will be an obvious eyesore, out of place among the majority of homes on the park. Sometimes parks will consist mainly of old homes but that does not prevent the court from finding that a home is detrimental if the court is satisfied on the evidence that this is the case. Buyers of older homes need to be aware of this provision and should seek advice from an independent experienced surveyor on the structural condition and from the park owner if they have any doubts. A park owner who intends to bring action based on the age and condition of a park home, shall tell the home owner and any prospective buyer of the home, in writing, of his intention.
What happens to your home if you die
The law specifically deals with the treatment of park homes where the owner dies. If the home owner was living with his/her husband or wife when death took place, then the surviving partner can inherit the home and the rights for the home under the agreement with the park owner. In this way they can continue to live in their home on the park. Under these circumstances no money should change hands and equally no transfer fee will be payable. This applies also for people living together as husband and wife. A member of the home owner's family who was also living in the home when death occurred may also inherit the home and the rights of the agreement and therefore continue to live in the home on the park, so long as this does not contradict the park rules or terms of the agreement; for example, the family member should be within the age range permitted on the park. The law carefully defines who counts as a member of the home owner's family. Under these circumstances no money should change hands and equally no transfer fee will be payable. If no family member was living with the home owner when he or she dies, then the person who inherits the home will have the right to sell it on the park but will not have the right to live in the home with the benefit of the agreement themselves.
Gifts of park homes
The law allows a home owner to give away his park home and pass on the benefits of the agreement to a member of his family, as defined in the Mobile Homes Act 1983 subject to certain conditions. Under these circumstances, no money should change hands and equally no transfer fee will be payable.
How to deal with problems
Park owners who are members of the BH&HPA and/or NPHC will use every endeavour to assist in the settlement of complaints arising on their parks. They will also be able to advise you of the conciliation and arbitration procedures, which do not affect your statutory rights.
Step 1. The home owner with a complaint is advised in the first instance to take his/her written complaint directly to the park owner.
Step 2. The home owner may at any time seek help and guidance in settling complaints from the National Resident's Associations, Local Trading Standards Departments, Citizen's Advice Bureaux and Consumer Advice Centres.
Step 3. Complaints involving members of the BH&HPA and/or NPHC, which are not resolved can be referred for conciliation to the British Holiday & Home Parks Association or the National Park Homes Council (addresses below).
The Conciliation Service aims to ensure that both parties in any dispute understand the point of view of the other and is not a method of arbitration. The undertakings of park owner members of both BH&HPA and NPHC are clearly laid out within this Charter. If investigation through the conciliation service shows that these terms have been breached, every effort will be made to ensure compliance. The Association's disciplinary procedures include, as a final measure, expulsion from trade association membership, with all the attendant negative publicity this implies.
Step 4 (Pitch fee problems). In the case of disputes concerning pitch fees, if the complaint is still not resolved to your satisfaction, you may once more approach the respective trade association's Director General for advice on the availability of an independent Arbitration Scheme. It is intended to be a scheme, which can be used without the parties having to employ experts, but does involve fees for the arbitrator's time. In many cases, the issue can be determined ?on paper? without a hearing. Arbitration can only be used to resolve a dispute if both parties agree. Site Licence Issues If you are concerned that the park does not reach the standards set down in the Site Licence issued by the local authority, you should discuss this with the park owner. If you are not satisfied by the response you receive from the park owner, you may also take this up with the local authority's Environmental Health Department.
NATIONAL TRADE ASSOCIATIONS
National Park Homes Council
Aldershot Hants GU11 1SS
Tel: 01252 336092
British Holiday & Home Parks Association
6 Pullman Court
Great Western Road
Gloucester GL1 3ND
NATIONAL RESIDENTS ASSOCIATIONS
British Park Home Residents Association
3 Lewis Way
Notts. NG6 8UJ
Independent Park Home Advisory Service
17 Ashley Wood Park
Dorset DT11 9JJ
National Association of Park Home Residents
Flat 1, 6 Rhiw Bank Avenue
Specialist magazines are an excellent source of information about the park home industry. They provide news and reviews of parks, homes, events and other useful items. There are two major park home magazines in circulation in the UK:
Park Home & Holiday Caravan
Park Home Living
The NCC was setup over 70 years ago (1939) as the UK trade body representing the collective interests of the tourer, motorhome, holiday home and park home sectors. They are a not for profit membership organisation and unique in that they represent all those within the supply chain:-
Manufacturers of tourers, motorhomes and holiday and park homes Retail dealers of tourers and motorhomes. Distributors of holiday homes Holiday and residential park operators. Suppliers of components, appliances and accessories. Specialist service providers to the industry
Odds Farm Estate. Wooburn Common Road, Wooburn Common, High Wycombe, Buckinghamshire, HP10 OJY
Telephone : 07825 440289
Fax : 01628 530603
Email : email@example.com
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