Buying a Static Caravan – Where to Start
You may well be thinking of buying a static caravan, especially as staycations are on the rise, and static caravans are an increasingly popular choice for holiday homes. If you are thinking of buying your first static caravan, this guide is here to help you make the right choices. A static caravan is a large financial investment, so it is important to be prepared and to have asked all the right questions before purchasing one.
Choosing a Park when Buying a Static Caravan
The first thing to consider when buying a static caravan is the park in which it is situated. Static caravans are nearly always sold in situ as part of a deal including the pitch inside the park and other park amenities. The situation of your static caravan is paramount.
Ask yourself if this is the spot you want to spend much of your leisure time. Is it a place to which you will want to return again and again? Try to arrange a short stay in the park, if not in the actual static caravan you are interested in. This is the best way to judge if you are going to like it there.
Ask other park occupants, your future neighbours, how they find staying there. Ask them about the wider area and the management of the park. You will, of course, want to meet the park manager or owner too, to get an idea of who you will be dealing with on a regular basis. It is important to feel you can approach them to help you manage your static caravan and particularly to judge how the park as a whole is managed. You will not always be there and it is important to be assured your static caravan is safe and watched over.
The National Association of Caravan Owners (NACO) is set up to further the aims of static holiday caravan owners across the UK. If you need advice or guidance you can give them a call.
If you are considering renting out your static caravan, make sure you are in a park that allows this and are aware of any extra obligations this entails for the maintenance of your static caravan.
Choosing the Static Caravan itself
The variety in style, quality, size and price of static caravans available can be quite daunting. Trade shows, which display models from many manufacturers, are an excellent place to check out what is on offer now.
Many people will start to narrow down their choices by considering the size they need first. How many people do you want it to accommodate? Is it just for you and your family or might you be lending it or letting it to larger parties?
Look for value for money when buying a static caravan. A second-hand caravan can be a good buy if you also pay attention to the age, the features and condition of the caravan. Bear in mind, for instance, that some parks have an upper age limit above which they do not allow caravans on their pitches. Make sure your static caravan is an age which gives you enough time before you have to refurbish or replace it. Be clear of the rules of your park.
The Cost of Buying a Static Caravan
A static caravan is a great way for you and your family to enjoy your holidays. Be aware that the sale price is not the full cost of your static caravan. You will also need to know the following:
- How much is the pitch fee?
- Does the sale price include the pitch fee for a period of time? The first year’s pitch fee is sometimes included.
- Are electricity and water included in the fee and how are they billed?
- Are there any other fees or charges and when do they have to be paid? (It is worth noting here that you do not need a separate TV licence if you already have one at another UK residence)
- Does your static caravan come with a warranty included in the sale price or is this extra?
- You will need static caravan insurance as a condition of occupancy in the majority of parks. To find out more about this, talk to one of our experienced professionals on 01604 267 529 to get the best deal and be assured of the best cover.
- This will come with some maintenance obligations and you should allow for some costs involved here too. Talking to other static caravan owners about how much this may cost over a year is a useful way to estimate what extras you might need to factor in to your thinking.
If your caravan park offers you finance or you are taking it from another provider, make sure to seek independent advice beforehand. Include any repayments and interest in the costs of buying a static caravan.
The agreement you sign with the park management or owner is an important document. It should always be in writing and should be easy to understand. It should cover pitch fees and how long you are allowed to stay with your caravan on the pitch.
It should also clearly state any obligations you have on the site and for your static caravan.
Holiday caravan owners are not covered by the Mobile Homes Act (1983) which makes it doubly important that all concerns are plainly and comprehensively covered in the agreement you sign with the park management. This will make any issues that may arise much easier to solve successfully.
Be sure that you understand fully anything you are agreeing to. Keep a copy of the contract to review in your own time so that you are sure before you sign. If you are unsure, you should speak to a solicitor.
It’s worth taking some time to do your research when buying a static caravan as making the right choice can give you and your family a great deal of pleasure and happy times.
This is a marketing article from My Holiday Home Insurance, specialist providers of insurance for static caravans, leisure homes, leisure lodges and holiday homes. Our team of experienced advisers are always happy to help, so for more information, call our Northampton office on freephone 0800 988 0890.