Whilst the MLA has quite a broad scope for pitch fee increase, there are some plus points – sums spent on the park must be for the ‘benefit of caravan owners’ and unlike its predecessor this MLA doesn’t mention ‘any other relevant factor’ has been removed. ‘Market rates for pitch fees’ remains a contentious term – how can this ever be fair?
Many written agreements reference above inflation or RPI (Retail Prices Index) increases as needing explanation and justification. If your pitch fee increase is above either then it's important that you ask your park owner how the revision has been arrived at. To find out what the current rate of inflation or RPI is check here: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/10612209
To establish how or why your pitch fee has gone up, it's important to put your request in writing. The approach can be light, and conversational, but it's vital that the request is documented. You can pop your park owner an email or write them a letter - whichever best fits your own circumstances.
A really common reason given for increase is redevelopment of the park and/or the installation of new facilities such as a pool or gym. Once again, it comes down to whether your contract mentions such items but it's important to note that in most circumstances agreement terms cover sums actually spent on the park or its facilities.
If you haven't got a written agreement, or your licence is 'annually renewable' it's still advisable to ask the question, it's just worth bearing in mind that your park owner has less of an obligation to respond.
Plan of Action!
Make sure that if you’ve got a contract and that you’ve checked to see if the item of enquiry is covered – or if there is a complaints procedure that should be followed.
- Contact your park management.
All items of enquiry that we receive would benefit from being presented to the relevant party prior to our involvement, we feel that putting pen to paper is always the best approach.
- Keep copies of everything!
Make sure that you keep copies of anything that you send to your park regarding the enquiry. If you're a NACO member, make sure that anything you send gets sent to us in order that we can keep it on file should we need to intervene or follow-up.
Remember, NACO members have access to our team of specialist advisers who can help with the analysis of your contract and construction of correspondence. We have a range of template letters to assist with any approach to your park management. Join today or call us on 01255 820 321 to find out more...