Can I Live in My Static Caravan?
“Can I live in my static caravan?” is a question we frequently get asked. The short answer is yes, there are ways in which you can live in your static caravan. Many travelers and gypsies have been doing so for centuries, and long before we had the sites, technology and resources that make caravanning so comfortable in the present.
If you enjoy a caravanning as a holiday past time you’ll have no difficulty what-so-ever to adjust something you love into a full-time way of life. If you’re a home dweller with little experience looking to live in a static home for whatever reason, be it freedom or saving money, you might find the adjustment a little bit harder but it is still easily attainable.
Here are some options that are available to those looking to move into a static home or caravan for the long haul.
Living in a Static Caravan Park Home
If you want to be able to live in a static caravan for the whole year then you can live in a Park Home. Normally this will involve buying a static caravan from the owners of the park. You will then rent the pitch from them and be liable to pay a variety of fees to live there. This will include council tax, maintenance fees and utility bills. Don’t take any risks when choosing a residential static caravan park, always ask the owners the exact costs of renting the pitch and bear in mind that although you will have bought the caravan the owners may claim a portion of the sale price if you want to sell it on.
Park Homes have a license to operate twelve months of the year as residential housing, which is why you will have to pay council tax. However you can use your static caravan as a permanent address and be entered onto the electoral role.
Living in a Static Caravan Site Home
Site homes for static caravans are holiday homes. This means that their license only extends for about 10 months of the year, so you will have to vacate your caravan for two or three months every year. The result of this is that the caravan can not be regarded as a permanent residence and you cannot use the address to be on the electoral role.
Static caravan parks of this type will often allow you to bring your own caravan. Again you will be liable for pitch rental fees and often a maintenance surcharge plus the costs of your bills. Don’t forget to ask the owners the exact amount of time you must be away from your caravan and factor in the cost of staying elsewhere during this period.
Living in a Static Caravan On Your Own Land
There is a lot of contradictory information about using static caravans on your own land. The reason is that different areas have different rules and in the majority of cases you will need some kind of permit in order to use a caravan. As a general rule you are not allowed to live in a caravan on your own land without planning permission. What you can do varies from council to council so you should check with them before making any plans. The law states that outbuildings, including caravans, cannot be used for sleeping in unless permission has been obtained.
Word of mouth suggests that you are unlikely to get planning permission for a permanent caravan residence unless the land is already used for caravans or you are planning to live their temporarily whilst carrying out renovations.
However the best course of action would be to speak to a solicitor who specialises in local planning applications because there is a huge amount of variance across the country as to what is and what isn’t permitted. For instance some new build homes stipulate in the deeds that caravans may not be parked on their land. Some councils will insist upon waste water being dealt with in a particular way, which can make your costs shoot up. Get legal advice before doing anything, otherwise you may be issued with an legal warning telling you to leave.
If you want to dig deeper into the legal side of living in a static home, make sure you read the Mobile Homes Act 1983.
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