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Buying a Site for your Static Caravan

By: Chris Nickson - Updated: 14 Apr 2021 | comments*Discuss
Caravan Static Caravan Caravan Park Site

Owning a static caravan is somewhat different to the type you see towed behind cars. A static caravan is larger – quite a lot larger - and more luxurious – what the Americans call a mobile home. It has wheels, but it's a caravan in name more than in fact. It can be moved, although not easily, because of its size and weight; not something you could possibly tow with a car (in fact, they can't legally be towed on the road - in spite of the fact they have wheels, they have to be carried on the back of a lorry).

On the face of it, buying a static caravan and a site for it should be quite straightforward. After all, there are caravan parks for them all over the country – it’s easy to find a directory of them online. But, in fact, the whole transaction is complex, and you need to be aware of the problems before going into it.

The Static Caravan

The first thing you need to know is that you can’t use the caravan as your main residence; that’s not allowed. Many parks close in the winter, anyway, so you wouldn’t be able to stay all year. Instead it’s a holiday home, and quite an expensive investment. Expect to pay £40,000 and up for a good, new static caravan. However, that’s still a lot cheaper than a bricks-and-mortar house, and you’ll find plenty of room. Generally, the price includes carpets and kitchen appliances.

But that money isn’t all you’ll pay. You’d better check the caravan comes with central heating and double glazing. If not, you’ll be paying for them, and it’s easier to have them fitted before the caravan is on site. After that, it still has to be transported from the manufacturer to the site, and then hooked up to utilities, which is known as commissioning.

People do re-sell static caravans, either on a site or to be transported, but be aware that resale prices aren’t that high, as depreciation tends to be steep.

The Caravan Site

If things seem complicated with the caravan, that’s nothing compared to buying the site. First of all you need to find a location, and obviously it should be in an area you like to visit – although the other end of the country isn’t a great idea.

Once you know where you want to be, consult a directory and find a caravan park in the area and see if they have vacancies – which you’ll want to do well before buying a caravan, of course. You don’t buy the site, however. In some ways it’s more like leasing it.

You pay a rent each year, which is often in the low thousands, and the contract is for a set length of time, which varies with the arrangement, but usually for at least a decade. On top of that, you’ll also be paying management fees, and if you decide to sell or move the home, you might have to pay even more. On top of that, what will you have to pay for insurance and utilities? It all mounts up.

On top of that, each site will have its own rules, which will be laid down in the contract, so you should study it very carefully before signing. What if you want to rent out the caravan for weekends when you’re not using it? Make sure it’s allowed. If there’s a pool or other facilities in the park, check to be sure you don’t have to pay extra to use them. Finally, when is the park open? Does it close in the winter, and if so, for how long?

Take all those factors into account when you consider buying a caravan and site. For the right people, it can be wonderful, a good holiday home and weekend retreat, and many love it. Just make sure you go into it with your eyes open.

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I’ve been looking to buy a static caravan very recently and have viewed several in the last few weeks, despite the fact that I’ve been researching all I can get my hands on about caravan ownership there are a few things that have really put me off. When you are offered a pitch to match up with the caravan you are being sold, you don’t realise until you a tualky look at the space it’s to be positioned just how close to the next caravans you might be. The lady in the caravan next to our pitch although giving me a friendly wave through the window spent the next half an hour watching us as we talked to the owner about the pitch . My thoughts were , is the neighbour going to become a boon pal or a decision I regret? So beware you can’t choose your neighbours. Secondly, those dreams of sitting on the decking with a glass of wine whilst the sun goes down. Sounds perfect doesn’t it . The trouble is twofold First when you buy a caravan, quite a lot of park owners may supply a rather meagre and expensive decking with the price of the caravan but it’s not big enough to squeeze more than two deckchairs in. Park owners quite like their caravans to look uniform and won’t allow large deckings to be built. So if your looking to show off your new requisition to the family maybe you’ll need an extra 7 or 8 grand and permission to buy the decking of your choice. Secondly, you do want to sit on your decking in the sun of an evening so check out which is north and south before you buy. All the pitches we looked at were in rather dank conditions on the park where we were unlikely to see any sun on the decking for most of the day. My last point for the ladies is this. When we looked it was in April, As we went past the caravans we noticed that people had moved the furniture in their caravans to the middle which was sheeted up?(maybe to stop it getting dusty or even damp) . Another lady was pressure washing her decking and others had obviously been washing net curtains in preparation for the coming season. Now I thought the whole point of buying a caravan was so you could have a holiday and put your feet up! Instead of one house to clean and tidy now there are two!! Some people may like to be busy but I’m not entirely sure having a caravan is going to be the restful haven it’s cracked up to be. I may look into motorhoming instead at least the depreciation is not quite so bad , you can choose your pitch, and sit in a sunny spot to drink your glass of wine!!!
Sasha - 14-Apr-21 @ 3:35 PM
Hi all, my wife and I are looking to buy a static caravan on site in the Herefordshire area. We will consider anything below £10000, possibly a little more. Anything at all would be great! Doesn't matter if it needs work. Thanks for your time!. Linda and Andy
Andy - 8-Feb-21 @ 6:47 PM
I am looking at buying a static caravan and looking for a site in the Northumberland area to put on site
Cammy - 15-Nov-20 @ 3:38 PM
We have a static caravan, it’s a 2005 We are not happy with the site. We want to look into moving the caravan but how do we go about finding sites that would except us and our caravan. We are open to looking at Northumberland or South Yorkshire or would consider any location in the Midlands .Any help advice would be really appreciated
Rob - 22-Oct-20 @ 6:07 PM
Hi, we have a beautiful 2017 Delta Locksley 38’x13’ Caravan sited on Isle of Sheppey but wishing to take it to a site near St Austell, Cornwall. Obviously, we will cover all transportation costs. Anyone know of any sites with available pitch. Thank You - Jo Griffin
Jo - 28-Sep-20 @ 11:46 AM
Hi Im looking to relocate toa smaller caravan site. Owners only in or around northumberland. Please can anyone help.
Lesa - 4-Sep-20 @ 6:57 AM
Looking for a site to put my static on. South East. Any where that anyone recommends
Caz - 4-Aug-20 @ 10:04 AM
Very good advi,cei do not want to sell my van but i move it to a residentialsite ?
Rulet - 23-Jun-20 @ 11:03 PM
We have a static caravan, it’s a 2007. We are not happy with the site. We want to look into moving the caravan but how do we go about finding sites that would except us and our caravan. We are in Scotland so looking for a site in Scotland. Also we would need to have idea on costs too. Any help advice would be really appreciated
Lizzy - 14-Jun-20 @ 9:24 PM
Hi I'm trying to find a place to put my static caravan on . Has anyone body got any ideas
Pip - 4-May-20 @ 11:45 AM
I would never buy a caravan again and would advise people to get a tourer and pitch up on holiday parks when you purchase a static van things go wrong believe me they do, these parks don't want to know you have no rights or there aren't any unions etc that can help, things like the ncc are just another posh name to get you to purchase once the parks have your money you get treated with content and if you don't like it you are ask to remove your van so people don't buy just rent I purchased a few months ago £86500 never got any after sales help which is a promise to new buyers etc etc not worth the paper its advertised on and this is from one of the larger well knowsites my new van is in ruined never got one bit of help
unhappy - 24-Apr-13 @ 4:52 PM
Beware if you are thinking of buying a static caravan. It will cost a lot more than the asking price ! If you should need to sell your van, for whatever reason, not only will it have significantly depreciated, but your site-owner may dock a significant commission, even if you have found a private buyer. Be prepared for the fact that many site-owners will kick you off when your caravan becomes 15 years old (20 if you are really lucky) and not only will you have to find a site that may be willing to accept your van, but you will be charged £500 or even £1000 "disconnection fee" by the site that is kicking you off. Then you will need to pay transport costs, reconnection costs, and if you are lucky, end up with your caravan on a site, but it may be nowhere near where you hoped to be. I speak from experience. Certainly never ever buy a static van without a legal contract that has been checked by YOUR lawyer.
Bob S. - 20-Aug-12 @ 8:06 PM
Yes, you need to check the site out very carefully indeed. There always seem to be endless little extras that can cost a fortune every year on top of the rent, and even hit you when you want to sell the caravan. I'd advise people to look around a lot, and have a lawyer go over the fine print and explain it before signing anything. It costs a little but it can save a lot in the long run.
Don - 31-May-12 @ 1:22 PM
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