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Before Owning A Caravan Discussion and advice on all aspects involved in deciding if a static caravan is right for you.

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Old 23-07-2017, 23:59
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missionblue22 missionblue22 is offline
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Join Date: May 2017
Location: west wales inland, Llanbrynmair
Posts: 68

hi, i think that checking your chosen park is a member of the British Holiday Parks Association BHPA would be a good start, that would limit the increases to an arbitrary level, also check if there is a limit in the agreement, you have to take a good hard look at the park owner and ask what increases have been over the last couple of years, remember that the park owner wants you there, if there was a sudden increase of say 20% i am sure that 50% of the tenants would leave / not renew making the overall loss of income, the owner needs to make a living or he would simply give up, they have to balance the books and any increases are generally only covering increased costs,
park choices are numerous, i would be wary of a park that has a lot old used vans for sale, ? are the owners unhappy with the park ?
i chose cringoed park, there was only 1 used van for sale and 7 new vans for sale on the newly developed area when we purchased ours, there are 3 new ones left and the used one which has made its way to the web site, we purchased ours, and 2 others were upgrades from the long term touring area to static ownership, and another sold to a couple just last week. but you really need to visit a park and not just see the vans talk to the owners of other vans on the site, we did and we did not get any negative feedback, indeed after nearly 3 months now being there every weekend except 1 it has more than lived up to our expectation, but like i say everybody has different needs.
i do wish you luck in your search, and hope you find the site then the pitch then the van ( in order of importance in my view ) of your dreams
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Old 24-07-2017, 00:13
Bluebells Bluebells is offline
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Join Date: May 2016
Location: Lake District
Posts: 197

Glad you had a good weekend looking around Caroline and managed to visit a number of sites. That's a good way to do it as you do see the potential problems with the variety of agreements - or none! You are right to be wary. It is a big financial commitment for a long period of time and you want to enjoy your holiday home - and not have to take on worries and cares. Like you, we had no idea what to expect - and we hadn't come across this forum then. We were also very trusting when ringing around the sites and could have really fallen badly. Definitely you need a written agreement. I don't know how many declare the calculation for annual increases though. We are on a good site where we are very happy but our agreement doesn't give any indication of calculations. Also if you buy on a site and it changes ownership or they decide to make costly site improvements you might end up with a bigger increase in fees than you planned for. When we were looking around, the standard response to the question about fee increases was "they go up a little bit each year, not a lot". I realise now that means different things to different people, depending on their own financial status and some folk get a nasty shock. Best not to stretch your budget beyond where you are comfortable for a few years ahead.

The other thing I didn't realise was that site rules could be tweaked a bit each year. I thought that once you agreed the terms and conditions that was it for the duration of your lease - but apparently that isn't always so.

I am sure you will find something that you are comfortable with. There are so many caravan sites and vans for sale - its a pity they aren't in a catalogue with full descriptions and costs etc. where we could read the reviews and ask questions !!! Keep looking - but beware. All the best.
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Old 24-07-2017, 22:40
slattster slattster is offline
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Join Date: Aug 2014
Posts: 382

We have no written rules , it's just a matter of respect for each other , it's only a small site so it probably works better than a bigger site , the owner is in it for the long run , we believe he won't just sell up and run and he keeps the site nice which passes on to the vanners. There is a lot of trust involved but we loved the site and the pitch .....and the van so we went with it and so far so good. Find the site you love then the pitch then check if you can live happily within the rules while you choose a van for the pitch, we saw sites with pages of rules - scared me rather than please me.
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Old 25-07-2017, 01:58
Bluebells Bluebells is offline
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Join Date: May 2016
Location: Lake District
Posts: 197

We only visited 2 sites on completely opposite sides of England but checked out loads on the internet and made loads of phone calls and e mail enquiries to other sites as we were open regarding location. Didn't want loads of facilities but have family members with disabilities. We soon realised that many sites were closing down as it was end of October and we were anxious to purchase quickly ready for the new season. Weren't told by any that we could choose a pitch and then a van to go on it, etc. We were just offered vans already sited. One park sent a load of information, a list of vans for sale with plot numbers and a site plan to locate them - and the available cheaper vans were on high priced pitches. I have recently heard that the same site has written to the owners of older vans this year saying that they must upgrade or leave the park. Also additional facilities have been put on the park and the rents have been bumped up. This appeared to be a decent, well run park but wasn't suitable for our family needs so we didn't visit.
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Old 25-07-2017, 10:26
treetopper treetopper is offline
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Join Date: Feb 2011
Location: Treetops
Posts: 5,858

Must admit we have seen sites change...numerous family owned sites are being bought ,and they have sales people and have added club,also extended season without asking existing van owners....some are now not owners only....
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