Important Considerations when Buying a Residential or Holiday Park
As with any property transaction, when buying a residential or holiday park there are many questions that a prospective park owner should consider before going ahead with their purchase. At IBB Solicitors, our Commercial Property team has a wealth of experience in helping park owners with property transactions, and we would always recommend that a buyer take the following steps:
- Do your research! Ask the seller questions such as: How large is the site? How many pitches does it have? When was the site first opened, and has the infrastructure (roads, lighting, services) been properly maintained or refurbished? Once you own the land you will be responsible for its maintenance and any repairs…
- Look at the planning history of the site. Has the previous owner made any planning applications, and what was the outcome? Is there any chance to expand the park or to increase the number of homes? Also check that all necessary planning/environmental consents and registrations (e.g. GDPR) are in place and can be transferred.
- Look at the seller’s paperwork. Do each of the occupiers have written statements/licence agreements? Are there any site rules, and when were they last reviewed? Does the park have a minimum age limit?
- Review the site licence and conditions. Are there any outstanding breaches or compliance notices to deal with? Contact the local authority and check what arrangements will need to be put in place to transfer the licence to you after completion. Also consider whether any alcohol, gaming and entertainment licenses will need to be transferred.
- Work out (and stick to!) your budget – make sure you take account of the transaction costs, such as professional fees for lawyers, valuers, agents or surveyors and accountants, as well as any taxes like VAT and stamp duty land tax. And don’t forget about internal management time cost.
- Consider the timescale for the deal – be realistic about the period within which negotiations, due diligence and preparing documents will take – complications often arise, and completion may be dependent on information from third parties (such as the Council).
- If you are buying the park business (rather than just the land), take advice as to the position of any employees or workers on the park.
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