If you’re considering buying a static caravan, it’s important to be aware of any potential pitfalls.
Although static caravan ownership is a wonderful experience, there are a few things you need to consider before making your purchase.
In this guide, we’ll discuss some of the most common problems people encounter when buying a static caravan.
If you’re thinking about investing in holiday home ownership, make sure you read on!
1. Not Getting To Know The Holiday Park
It’s essential to research and thoroughly check out the holiday park before you buy. Holiday park styles vary so much, from quiet and peaceful to busy and lively – and everything in between.
The best way to decide is to go and book a holiday on the park – if this is possible – especially during the times you are most likely to use it.
If you plan on using the caravan during any school holidays, try and stay during this time too, holiday parks have a pretty different atmosphere at peak vs off-peak times.
While you are there, see if you can speak to any other owners and ask them about their experience at the park. Ask if there are any pitfalls to ownership that they have experienced.
Check out any facilities and see how well they are maintained. Find out if they are closed during any part of the year.
2. Short Holiday Park Season
Before you buy, check how long the park is open—some parks close for part of the year, usually in the winter months. There are, however, holiday parks that are open all year round.
3. Not Researching The Local Area
Most static caravans and lodges are located on holiday parks in popular areas with tourists.
Decide on how lively or quiet you like your holidays.
If you prefer to explore many different areas and don’t like to be restricted by location, you might consider a touring caravan instead.
You might also like: Where Is The Best Place To Buy A Static Caravan?
4. Not Realising All The Costs
When you see a static caravan listed for sale, that price is usually not an all-inclusive cost.
Aside from the initial cost of the caravan, there are also other things to consider.
Although not exhaustive, the main ones are;
Annual Site Fees
These vary from park to park and sometimes within a park (depending on the location of your pitch).
Sometimes the first year fee is included in the purchase price, but usually, it is payable. Different parks operate in different ways; some require the entire year’s payment in advance, whereas other parks will accept payment by instalments.
Check and see what bills are already included in the site fee. Typical bills include electricity, gas and water.
There are cheap ways to heat a static caravan, such as portable heaters and draught excluders, which might help reduce these bills.
Council tax is not payable on non-residential holiday parks.
Although static caravan insurance isn’t a legal requirement, most holiday parks will insist you have it under the terms of siting it.
Even if it isn’t needed, it makes sense to insure a static caravan.
Maintenance and Repairs
Like any home, a static caravan also requires maintenance and repairs.
It’s wise to allocate some money for any general maintenance or unexpected costs such as roof or window repair or any damp and mould issues – although this can be prevented with the correct care.
5. Furnishing and Renovations
Most static caravans come furnished; this is especially true of new ones. However, some older models might require a bit of renovation.
Over time some of the furniture may become a little tired and require replacing.
You may also decide to upgrade a few areas, perhaps adding more outdoor space such as some decking or a garden area.
Check out our static caravan makeover ideas.
6. Transport and Siting Fees
This is only relevant if you buy a static caravan that is not already located where you want it or if a preferable plot becomes available on the holiday park you are already on.
The costs of transporting and siting a static caravan vary depending on many factors (distance, size of caravan etc.)
7. Static Caravan Age Limits
It’s essential to know the holiday park rules on static caravan ages. Most parks have an age limit and will ask you to remove it when that age is reached – that could be after 10, 15 or 20 years.
If you plan to sublet the caravan, check the age limit that the park has; these can be set at ten years old at some locations.
It’s worth noting that these age limits tend to be more common on UK holiday parks – sites in other countries such as France and Spain tend to have more relaxed rules.
8. Static Caravan Depreciation
Like a car, static caravans also depreciate. The rate is similar to a car (about 15% per year), but there are variables. Like cars, new caravans will depreciate at a quicker rate than older used ones.
9. Not Being Able To Sublet
If you plan to rent out your caravan to offset some of the costs associated with ownership, check that the holiday park allows you to sublet.
If you are considering buying a static caravan, we hope this article has given you a good overview of the potential pitfalls.
Owning your own holiday home can be great fun and very rewarding, but it’s important to consider all aspects of ownership before deciding.