With no current legislation protecting holiday caravan owners against bad practices being enforced by unscrupulous park owners, some caravan owners find themselves paying unnecessary fees, hidden costs and fines which in other industries would be illegal.
Despite the lack of regulation, there appears to be no new government initiatives to stop such activity.
Recently, in May 2013, there has been regulation imposed on residential park homes, but not those used for holiday purposes, cementing the feeling that nothing will be done under this government to help the owners of holiday homes. The laws introduced include a limitation of changing pitch fees only once a year, alongside having a right to sell your holiday home in an open market, and local authorities having greater powers to enforce the rules.
However, for anyone who is unaware, there are trade bodies which do exist in order to regulate the caravan industry, by making members adhere to a code of conduct for operation. The main organisation in the UK is the National Caravan Council (NCC), who have approved holiday parks across the country, highlighted by their company logo which will be pictured on the park’s main website. Parks who are not members of the NCC may not adhere to their set guidelines, and so My Holiday Caravan recommends buyers look for sites covered by the NCC’s regulations.
The NCC’s Approved Holiday Park – Holiday Home Ownership scheme and Code of Practice was re-launched in February 2013, in order to address these complaints and regulate the industry more efficiently. For more information about the NCC’s scheme, see the coverage we gave its release on our website here.
Alternatively, the OFT put forward their recommendations to buyers for protecting them against unfair contract terms back in 2003. These include the prevention of the park from deterring or insisting on sales, partial or full refunds to terminated applications, and a full disclosure of all terms at the outset of the sale. The main points can be viewed here.