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Caravans: Any tips re buying one?

Discussion in 'Personal' started by delmamerchant, Aug 2, 2017.

  1. delmamerchant

    delmamerchant Established commenter

    I am thinking of buying a static caravan. Anyone on here have any advice re what to look for. I am going to buy it on a holiday park. It seems hard to find a good site - without an amusement arcade that is open for most of the year. Any tips?

    I am attempting to invest in my emotional wellbeing and my ideal country cottage is well out of my financial reach.
    Sundaytrekker, mathsmutt and peggylu like this.
  2. peggylu

    peggylu Star commenter

    I'd be asking about and looking for:
    • Price, age and specifics about the caravan
    • Transportation, siting and commissioning costs
    • Rate of depreciation
    • Criteria for determining if a caravan is no longer up to park standards
    • Location, type and size of the pitch
    • How long the license is issued for and how it can be renewed
    • Planning permission on the park
    • Any local authority conditions which may affect you and your caravan
    • Opening times of the park throughout the year
    • Arrangements for winter storage
    • Amenities and services provided
    • Planned maintenance or development on-site
    • Annual pitch usage fee and how it can be paid
    • Criteria for increases in fees and details of past changes for reference
    • Utility costs
    • Insurance requirements – must the park’s block insurance be used? Are there penalties for not using it?
    • Any other sundries/fees and charges
    • Restrictions on transfer of ownership
    • Circumstances where your caravan could be moved from the park
    • Notice and refunds policy
    • Exclusions to the park owner’s liabilities
    • Any unfair penalties, restrictions or obligations imposed on you
    • Any unclear fees, charges or payment schedules in site agreement.
    • Permission for the site owner to move your caravan or change your pitch without notice
    • Any potentially excessive fees and charges in comparison to alternative sites.
    Then when I had answers to all those queries I'd check out whether I liked the decor, fittings and locale.
    Lalad, chelsea2, install and 3 others like this.
  3. peakster

    peakster Star commenter

    My only comment would be to get one at a larger site because the maintainence is likely to be much better.
    peggylu and Lara mfl 05 like this.
  4. mathsmutt

    mathsmutt Star commenter

  5. FrankWolley

    FrankWolley Star commenter

    I'd look in a mirror, and ask 'am I really that old'? before even thinking of buying any sort of caravan...:eek:
  6. install

    install Star commenter

    Do not buy one..... you may regret it for a long long time.
    wanet and lanokia like this.
  7. catmother

    catmother Star commenter

    Probably best to try a few sites by spending times there to see what they are like?
    peggylu and Lara mfl 05 like this.
  8. slingshotsally

    slingshotsally Star commenter

    My PiL were thinking of buying one! I shall email a link to this thread.
    peggylu and Lara mfl 05 like this.
  9. install

    install Star commenter

    Good advice for the OP. I have tried some and it wasn't my cup of tea or coffee for that matter.
    Last edited: Aug 2, 2017
    mathsmutt, peggylu and Lara mfl 05 like this.
  10. peakster

    peakster Star commenter

    They can also be very difficult to sell.

    ..and ask yourself, how much do you think you are likely to be in in each year.

    Although you could always rent it out to your friends for holidays.
  11. NellyFUF

    NellyFUF Lead commenter

    SOmeone on here has a scottish timber lodge that is a good investment.
    On telly last night I watched some designery man do one up and then rent a lovely field in the Lakes for it.
    I have a contact who has one on half an acre of Yorkshire where they live all summer then live in a cheap 2 bed terrace with no garden the rest of the year.
    I have one on the coast in North Yorkshire. I adore it. It is parked by a stream in a small and badly run site where we see no one and there are no facilities not even a radio signal. We have had one for many years in one place or another as this was brilliant for the kids when they were young, and was my well being when teaching. Don't go for one on a chain site. Or posh site. Tour around the area you are considering and enquire at sites that you fancy. Or buy a field/woodland and source your own van. Or a shed or what not.
    I have 30 x 20 feet of North Yorkshire that I can call my own and I love it. It is just finding time to get up there that is still a problem.
    My van is around 20 years old now but everything is repairable. My even redid the window seals last year ....we found a van servicing company that drains it down and sets it up every year.
    Get one with a gas boiler and hot water.
    If I could I would get one with a wood stove.
    lexus300, mathsmutt, peggylu and 2 others like this.
  12. InkyP

    InkyP Star commenter


    We walked past here at the weekend. Although it looks huge from the air in the photo the vans at the front, nearest the cliff were more like holiday cottages with their own little gardens. They looked privately own as people seemed to keep their own stuff there, they had a lived in look. I would have loved a van there although there is no access to the beach.
    The website address says Bridlington but this is Gristhorpe.
    peggylu and Lara mfl 05 like this.
  13. peakster

    peakster Star commenter

    There are a lot of commercial caravan parks in that area though.
    Lara mfl 05 and InkyP like this.
  14. Bonnie23

    Bonnie23 Occasional commenter

    My parents sold their house and moved into one three years ago. They have two dogs as well. They love it and haven't looked back since. It's right on the beach and it's perfect.

    I would advise going through a site you want to be based on. Normally it works out cheaper because you dont have to pay a transportation fee. Unless of course they don't have any caravans you want.

    Be careful as well that you get a 12 months residential pitch. A lot of sites are 11 months and close for one month to avoid council tax but it's not worth the hassle as most caravan sites are just £500 a year for the tax.
    install, mathsmutt, peggylu and 3 others like this.
  15. Dunteachin

    Dunteachin Star commenter

    Spot on reply from @peggylu!

    We've had one for 24 years (not the same one) but not on a commercial site with those costly fees, rules and regs.
    We have loads of facilities on site, including a large outdoor pool.
    It's our second home!
  16. caterpillartobutterfly

    caterpillartobutterfly Star commenter

    If you don't have children, choose one with no child facilities at all.
    Try and spend a weekend on site before buying if you can.
  17. Didactylos4

    Didactylos4 Star commenter

    That one especially as some parks still insist on age-limits for statics using their parks.
    This may mean further investment in as soon as 3-5 years.

    Which is a pity as some of the companies who rent them out as holiday homes also sell off older models really cheaply even if they are usually both structurally sound and better maintained than some sold privately
    mathsmutt and peggylu like this.
  18. peggylu

    peggylu Star commenter

    Why? Is it only old people who can enjoy the pleasures of a coastal or countryside retreat?
    mathsmutt likes this.
  19. Duke of York

    Duke of York Star commenter

    We had a static caravan for a couple of years. It had previously belonged to a friend who offered it to my sweetheart for a song. It seemed like a good idea at the time. The caravan was nice enough and it was on a nice site near Folkstone, but every time we went there, there was something that needed doing, which took the edge of that weekend away.
    mathsmutt likes this.
  20. peakster

    peakster Star commenter

    Fixing a water leak in a caravan can be a nightmare,

    The most dangerous thing about them of course is the bottled gas supply - if you don't turn the cooker off completely then you can get a leak.
    mathsmutt likes this.

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