Many people - around quarter of a million at the last count - are attracted by the peaceful lifestyle of a park home park. Maybe you want to increase income in retirement, or make gifts of money to the next generation. You should always take proper legal and financial advice and the NCC strongly recommends using a solicitor when purchasing a park home. N.B. Stamp Duty Land Tax is not payable when you buy a park home.
Under the amended Mobile Homes Act, all prospective owners of new park homes (i.e. those purchased brand new from the park owner) must receive a written agreement from the park owner at least 28 days before they complete their purchase and move in, to give them time to understand exactly how things will work. This Written Statement is the most important document you will receive as it sets out the terms on which you are entitled to keep your home on the park and explains your rights in law. Once the agreement is signed, you will need to keep it in a safe place.
If you are buying a used park home, you will take over the existing Written Statement (see above) from the outgoing occupier. This will need to be formally transferred to you. The seller will also need to complete the following forms: Buyers' Information Form; Notice of Proposed Sale Form; Assignment Form; Notice of Assignment Form.
Other documents you should receive include, park rules including matters such as whether pets are allowed and communal parking arrangements, home manufacturers owners handbook for your home, with items such as how the home should be maintained. And, if the home is new you should receive information about how to apply for the Gold Shield Warranty Certificate.
After the new Mobile Homes Act 2013 comes into force (26 May 2013 - England only) a sale notice must be completed by both the seller and the proposed buyer at least 21 days before the proposed date of the completion of the sale. On receipt of the notice of proposed sale, the park owner can object to the sale only on certain grounds for example if the new owner - does not meet any minimum age limit on the park - wants to keep any types of animals which are not allowed on the park - wants to park vehicles of a type which are not allowed on the park or - wants to park more vehicles on the park than are allowed. To proceed with the objection the park owner must - within 21 days of receiving the notice of proposed sale form - send the seller a notice to say that an application has been made to the RPT for an order to prevent the sale from going ahead (a Refusal Notice). The Tribunal will then decide whether to grant a Refusal Order.
Your park home is a valuable asset. At the time you purchase your home, you should consider making a will if you have not done so already. Although you do not own the land upon which your home is situated, you still have the right to bequeath your home. However, the law as to how the park home can be passed on to beneficiaries a little more complex than it is with a traditional home. The law treats a park home as a chattel - in the same way as a car or a boat - so the wording of your will is important.