What is a park home?
Park homes are modern, bungalow-style detached homes located on plots, known as “Pitches”, on privately owned estates. In law these homes are known as “Mobile Homes” and are covered by their own legislation, The Mobile Homes Act 1983, as amended by the Housing Act 2004 (in England), with similar provisions in Wales and Scotland. They are built to comply with British Standard BS 3632, which dictates stringent Health and Safety standards and requires high levels of insulation for year-round occupation. Park homes now have efficient double glazing and energy-efficient condensing boilers as standard. All National Park Homes Council (NHPC), manufacturers’ homes carry an approved badge. This signifies that the home has been inspected and approved through the NPHC Certification Scheme as complying with the correct standard.
Why buy a park home on a Maguire's estate?
For the lifestyle! Our parks are friendly communities designed for the over 50s. They ideally suit mature people who want a safe base from which to enjoy their retirement, or singles and couples who want the security and peace of mind of belonging to a community of people of similar age, but who do not want to move to managed accommodation.
There is also the benefit of downsizing to a manageable home and possibly releasing the capital from a larger property with which to enjoy security during your retirement.
Will I own both the park home and the land?
No. Your park home is covered by a unique form of legal tenure under which the park owner continues to own the land on which the home is sited; but you, as the occupier, own the home itself. The Mobile Homes Act 1983 gives you wide-ranging rights allowing you to occupy your pitch on the park as a resident, almost indefinitely. The legal relationship between you and the owner is governed by a very important agreement known as the “Written Statement”. This agreement is transferred to the new occupier whenever a park home is sold on the park.
What documentation should I receive?
Under the amended Mobile Homes Act, all prospective owners of park homes purchasing the home from the park owner must receive a written agreement from the park owner at least twenty-eight days before they complete their purchase and move in, to give them time to understand exactly how things will work.The 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 from the outgoing occupier. This will need to be formally transferred to you, requiring signatures from the seller, the park owner and you, before you can move into your home. You must make sure that the correct procedure is followed when purchasing a pre-owned park home. The right to keep the park home on the park is not legal until the outgoing occupier has discharged any payments for pitch fees, electricity and the likes to the park owner, any commission due to the park owner has been paid and the form of assignment for the Written Statement has been correctly completed and signed by the seller, buyer and park owner.
Other documents you should receive include:
- Park rules, which are to ensure the smooth running of the park, including matters such as communal parking arrangements and whether or not pets are allowed.
And, if the home is new;
- Information about how to apply for a Gold Shield Warranty Certificate.
- Home Manufacturer’s Owners’; Handbook for your home, covering items such as how the home should be maintained.
Is Council Tax payable for park homes and if so, how much?
Yes. Council Tax is payable on park homes (as on all residential homes). The amount payable will depend upon the individual Council Tax band assessed by the Council Tax Valuation Office. For further information, contact the Council Tax department of the relevant local authority (see ‘further information’ for the appropriate park).
Do I have to pay commission to the park owner if I sell my park home?
Yes. The payment of commission on the sale of a park home recognises the park owner’s investment and interest in the land and park infrastructure. The current maximum commission rate is fixed at 10% by law. When a home is sold, the purchaser acquires the park home itself (which they then own outright) together with the right to station it on the park owner’s land granted upon assignment of the Written Statement.
Is stamp duty applicable when buying a residential park home?
No. Stamp duty is a tax payable on a transfer, conveyance or lease of land. As a park home owner you do not own the land where the home is sited, so no stamp duty is payable.
Are pets allowed on Maguire's estates?
Yes. All our sites allow pets, although this is at the park owner’s discretion, and pets should be well behaved and friendly to ensure that they do not cause a nuisance to other park home residents.
Can children live on a Maguire's estate?
No. All our parks are for the over 50s, so children are not allowed to be site residents. Children are however, welcome to visit for holidays, weekends over etc.
What is a pitch fee?
To occupy a pitch on a park you will need to pay a pitch fee. A pitch fee is paid monthly to the site owner. The pitch fee will form part of the agreement (your Written Statement) it includes charges to cover the site’s basic running costs.
Do pitch fees increase yearly?
Yes. The pitch fee is increased yearly on a pre-set date. It is only allowed to increase in line with your agreement, which is strictly governed to prevent park owners increasing the fee in an arbitrary way.
Are Maguire's park home estates licensed?
Yes. Our sites are licensed by the local authority. Copies of licences (which may differ between authorities) are available to view upon request.
Do Maguire's estates have Planning Permission?
Yes. All our parks have planning permission from the local authority and copies are available to view upon request.
Can park homes be re-sold?
Yes. Park homes can be sold on the open market, although they must be sold to someone over the age of 50 to ensure that the park stays a retirement/semi-retirement park.
Can a park home be passed on in a will?
Yes. The home can be passed on just as any other possession. If the home is left to a spouse or partner who is in occupation, the surviving partner will inherit the rights to the park home and can continue to live on the park. If the inheritor is under 50 they cannot move into the home but they can sell the home on the open market. The 10% commission is not payable at the time the home is inherited but would be payable when the home is sold.
Can I get finance to buy a park home?
Yes. Finance is available but it is best to use a specialist in park home finance that understands park home law and is used to dealing with retired applications. We are happy to give details of this type of finance provider.
Can I buy a previously-owned park home?
Yes. Pre-owned homes do come into the market. These are private sales, and the agreement is transferred from the old owner to the new. The park owner will need to approve any new purchaser although approval cannot be unreasonably withheld, unless a valid reason is given. If the home is less than 10 years old the remaining part of its Gold Shield Warranty will be passed on to the new resident.
Can a park home be adapted for a disabled person?
Yes. The beauty of a park home is that they can be finished to your own individual particular needs, so we can arrange the installation of ramps and handrails for access, if necessary.
What guarantees come with a park home?
New park homes supplied by us come with a ten year Gold Shield Warranty. Gold Shield covers the cost of remedial work that may be required in the unlikely event of an inherent defect in the load bearing structure of your new park home over a ten year period from the date the home was first purchased. In addition, in the first year, you are entitled to cover for every part, component, fixture and fitting in your new home. However, the Gold Shield warranty is not insurance, so it does not replace the need for home cover.
Are park homes economic to run?
Yes. Modern park homes are built to very high standards. They are double-glazed and built to BS 3632 which requires high levels of insulation for year-round occupation. Park homes often require less energy than traditionally built homes.
Are park homes low maintenance?
Yes. Although park homes are constructed off site they have the feel and look of a traditional bungalow, with PVC glazed windows, decor tile roof and brick skirts.
Are the services connected?
Telephone lines are laid to each home through underground ducts. You will need to pay a standard connection charge to BT at the time you move in. Mini Sky television dishes and television aerials are allowed to be erected in discrete positions. Details on water, sewerage, gas and electricity can be found on this website’s park information pages
How do I insure a park home?
There are many specialist park home insurers. We recommend that you obtain quotes to compare prices and levels of cover.
Do I need a Solicitor or Surveyor to buy a park home?
There is no legal necessity to appoint a Solicitor or Surveyor when buying a park home. However, Maguire’s Park Homes recommend that you do appoint a Solicitor to handle the purchase of a new or pre-owned park home. Please be aware that we do not personally recommend any particular company and would advise obtaining written details and quotes for any services required. Maguire’s Park Homes also recommend that you get a specialist park home surveyor when buying a home over ten years old.