It can be very expensive to find somewhere to live and some people find living in a mobile home is an affordable option. There are a number of sites around the Dorchester area and we quite often have clients contact us for information on their rights and for help in resolving problems.
It is a complicated area as there are different types of sites and different site rules. A protected site is one where planning permission has been granted by the local council and the site owner has a licence. It is otherwise an unprotected site.
Tenants living on protected sites do have some rights. The owner must meet the council’s safety and amenities standard, they must have a contract which sets out pitch fees and there is some protection from eviction. People living on unprotected sites have very few rights and can often be told to leave with little notice.
Mobile homes can either be owned or rented. When it is owned there will still be a pitch fee to pay and possibly other charges such as for energy or water. There is usually no time limit on how long you can stay and eviction should only happen if the contract is broken. When renting it may be possible be get housing benefit to help with the rent.
Many site owners run the sites well but sometimes problems do arise. We have had clients claiming harassment, with threats to cut off fuel or eviction. This is a criminal offence and should be reported to the council.
There is a guide for mobile home residents on gov.uk; the National Association of Park Home Residents have an advice line 01492 535677; and the Leasehold Advisory Service have a Park Homes advice line 020 7383 9844.
The local Shelter and CAB can also help.
Visit the CAB office at 1 Acland Road, Dorchester, call Dorset Adviceline on 0844 2451291 or visit adviceguide.org.uk