Being part of a residents’ association on a park home site can have many advantages. But what is it? This article answers some frequently asked questions about residents’ associations.
What is a residents’ association?
A residents’ association (RA) is a group of residents living on a park home site who “work together to represent the interests of residents on a park” (LEASE). They talk to site owners and sometimes other organisations about issues which are affecting the people who live on their site. Residents’ associations also tend to organise social events and activities.
What are the benefits of joining a residents’ association?
As a member of a residents’ association, you’ll get to know the people who live near you and feel more connected to your community. You’ll also be involved in conversations with the site owners when any issues are being discussed.
What rights does a residents’ association have?
A residents’ association which has been set up properly has legal rights that the site owner has to take notice of. A site owner must:
- Consult with the residents’ association about any proposed changes to the site or how it’s managed
- Give the residents’ association 28 days’ notice in writing when they want to consult with them
- Describe any proposed changes to the residents’ association, and explain how and when comments can be made
What if your site doesn’t have a residents’ association?
If your park home site doesn’t have a residents’ association, you can set one up yourself.
How do you set up a residents’ association?
The first step towards setting up your own residents’ association is to speak to potential members. For a residents’ association to be considered valid, at least 50% of the people who live on the site need to be members. Membership needs to be open to anyone who lives on the site and owns a park home. People who are renting their park home can’t be members. Site owners and their families can’t be members either.
A residents’ association needs to have a chairperson, secretary and treasurer. So, when you’ve gathered some potential members, you’ll all need to vote to decide who will do those roles.
Your group will then need to write to the site owner and ask them to acknowledge your residents’ association. The National Association of Park Home Residents (NAPHR) has created a letter template near the bottom of this web page for your group to adapt and use.
When you’ve created your residents’ association, you need to maintain an up-to-date list of members.
What if the site owner doesn’t acknowledge your residents’ association?
If at least 50% of the park home site’s residents are members of your association, the site owner has to acknowledge it by law. If they refuse to, you can take the case to a Tribunal. There is more information about this in an article produced by The Leasehold Advisory Service (LEASE) on their website.
Where can you find out more?
If you’d like to find out more about residents’ associations, here are some places where you can find out more.
The UK government has produced a fact sheet with more information about the laws around setting up a residents’ association which you can access here.
The Leasehold Advisory Service (LEASE) is an organisation funded by government to provide free advice on the law relating to Park Homes in England. You can find their guidance about forming a residents’ association here.
You can find out more about park home insurance by speaking to our friendly team at Lifesure. Our comprehensive product includes buildings and contents insurance with home emergency and legal expenses cover included as standard.