Renting vs Buying A Park Home

Looking At Buying vs Renting A Park Home


Posted by Justin Allitt in Buying a Park Home, Park Homes, April 1, 2016

Thousands of people are living or renting a park home across the UK.  In fact, the number is likely to be higher than 250,000!  Whether you’re approaching retirement and want to downsize, or if you want to purchase a holiday home that you can use as a fantastic foothold all year round, there are plenty of great reasons to look into buying park homes.  But what about renting park homes?  Could paying a small amount each month be better for you than buying a property outright?

There are lots of things you need to consider when it comes to park property.  In some cases, buying may be the better option.  In others, however, renting a park home might be more convenient and cost-effective for you.  However, as you can imagine, renting is a lot different to buying, and it can mean you have to deal with different types of contract and agreement.

At Sell My Group, we want to offer you all the information you need when it comes to finding your perfect park home.  Whether you rent or buy, there are tons of wonderful reasons to move somewhere quiet and laid-back.  Read on for our full guide on what you need to know when renting, and whether or not it makes sense to buy instead.

Rental Tenancies and Your Rights

When you rent a park home, you’ll need to agree to a rental or tenancy agreement.  These will be set by your landlord, who will draw up a contract with a solicitor or legal advisor.  Your contract should protect your rights as much as the landlord’s, which is why it is crucial you look through any fine print as carefully as you can.

In fact, you may want to approach a solicitor of your own before you sign anything!  When you pay rent, you will agree to a rent contract.  This doesn’t have to be in writing, and your rights won’t change if it isn’t.  However, getting some form of documentation might help to ease your mind.  According to official government advice, you’ll be able to stay on the park premises for at least a year from your moving-in date.

However, a good, written contract should give you these details in clear language.  A landlord should tell you what notice you need to give, if any, if you wish to leave.  However, your contract will also tell you what happens if you break any rules set by the landlord. 

What’s more, a landlord should give you notice of their own if they wish for you to leave.  Refusing to acknowledge this request may lead them to giving you an eviction order.  Therefore, it’s best to keep within the legal remits of your contract!

What is a ‘Dwelling House’?

According to Shelter Scotland, a park home that you rent could become a ‘dwelling house’.  Therefore, it’s worth knowing these details in case they apply to you further on down the line.

A ‘dwelling house’ is a property you use as a permanent residence.  It might have full electricity supplies, water and communications.  A dwelling is also static, meaning you can’t move it from place to place.  These rules still apply whether you are in a regulation tenancy, or one with assured rules.

Types of Tenancy for Park Homes

Before you start renting a park home, it’s worth knowing what type of tenancy you should enter into.  According to official government advice, it all revolves around the date of January 15th, 1989.  If you are paying rent on a park home you’ve been living in before then, a regulated tenancy will apply.  After that – which is most likely – you’ll fall under a shorthold tenancy instead.

Depending on your tenancy type, and the contract you sign, you may find that you need to assert your rights to a landlord.  This may occur, for example, if your landlord doesn’t recognise your status, or if there are any disagreements with regard to contract terms.

If this happens, it’s always a good idea to look for legal advice.  Make sure to consult a solicitor, or to click here to get in touch with a local advisor who can help you further.

Should You Rent or Buy a Park Home?

Ok – now that we’ve broken down some of the red tape surrounding park home rentals, it’s worth us considering which option is best for you.  Is renting a park home going to be easier for you than buying outright?  Which options are likely to cost you the least money?  Let’s take a close look.

How Will You use Your Park Home?

The driving factor when securing a park home is how you’re going to use it.  Do you want to claim a park home as a permanent residence?  Or do you want to just use it as a temporary stop-gap?

If you’re only moving to a park home temporarily, it may be worth renting.  Otherwise, you will tie into an asset that could cost you a lot of money in the long run.  However, there are also huge benefits to buying a park home.

For example, buying a property at a park is a huge foothold.  If you see yourself living in a park home for some years to come, it may be worth making the leap.  Don’t forget, too, that you can look for park home finance, which will help you to secure your property.  You can’t get a mortgage on a park home, however, there are still ways you can look for financial help.

The Costs of Buying vs Renting

While park homes can be cheaper to run than traditional properties, your circumstances might vary.  For example, you might not have enough money outright to buy a park home, or to put down a deposit.  Therefore, if you are low on funds right now, you might want to rent to begin with.

Do also remember that resale values can vary.  Therefore, if you buy a park home and want to sell it later on, there’s no guarantee that you’ll get the same money back.  On top of this, the Mobile Homes Act states that park owners get a 10% cut of your sale profit, too.

Purchasing a park home, therefore, might be worth doing if you don’t see yourself selling any time soon.  Keeping hold of your asset might work out as a more financially viable solution.  However, again, your circumstances are likely to vary from the norm, or the average.

Your Flexibility

Finally, let’s think about your flexibility, and the flexibility you’ll get when renting a park home.  When you buy a park home, you are free to do what you like with it – within reason!  Of course, you will have an agreement that you need to sign with a site owners before you can move in.

However, buying a park home means you’re likely to have some sway over how to decorate it.  By renting any kind of property, a lot of this will legally fall to a landlord.  Some contracts can differ!  You might find that some landlords are looser than others on these rules, while others with stop you from making any major changes to their properties.

Crucially, it all comes down to the contracts.  No two contracts are ever going to be the same!  That’s why we recommend you speak with a solicitor, or a housing advisor, who may be able to give you more of an insight into what to expect.

Renting a park home will give you a lot of flexibility as far as movement is concerned.  However, you’ll find restrictions come into play when it comes to what you can actually do with a property under a rental agreement.

Conclusion

As you can see, there are plenty of things to consider!  There are definitely plus points for renting and negative points for buying.  However, both options may appeal to you depending on your circumstances.  Therefore, you will need to consider how likely it is you are going to need to stay in a park home, and what you intend to do with it while you stay.

  • Renting a park home means you won’t have to pay a lot of money upfront, and you won’t own any assets.  It will also mean that if you do want to move on, there will be room in your contract for you to do so.
  • Buying a park home means that the property is legally yours.  This means that you can adjust, and you can benefit from using it however you wish.  Within legal reason, of course!

Your reasons for renting or buying are going to vary.  Therefore, you should consider looking carefully at guides on owning a park home if it is likely to be something you wish to use for years to come.

Don’t forget, either, that you must make sure the park you choose has a 12-month licence if you rent or buy a property.  Otherwise, you may be breaking the law!  Make sure to read more of our guides for further assistance.