Caravan Park Closure

Spring 2017

Once located on the city fringes where suitable land was cheap and abundant, the caravan park is rapidly succumbing to the voracious appetite of urban expansion.

Today, the last vestiges of affordable accommodation is valuable real estate.

For many residents it’s a refuge from homelessness or a place to retire with some dignity.

Under the Residential Tenancies and Rooming Accommodation Act residents have some protection against summary eviction.

Firstly, the tenants must be informed about these changes and how it will affect their tenancy.

In the event of the park being sold and closed voluntarily the new owner is obliged to give long term residents 3 months’ notice.

Tenants must be given a Notice to leave (Form 12) if their tenancy is to be ended as a result of park closure.

If the moveable dwelling park is being sold but the tenancies will continue, the outgoing owner/manager must advise the tenants of the upcoming change of owner/manager. This notification is called an Attornment notice.

Tenants must be told in writing who the new owner is and be given the new owner’s/manager’s address for service. The tenants must then pay their rent to the new owner/manager.

Any rent which is unpaid at the time of the transfer of park ownership is a debt owed to the previous owner.

Alternatively the previous owner may pass the right to collect this debt on to the new owner when ownership of the business is transferred.

Sometimes issues may arise about the Moveable dwelling tenancy agreement (Form 18b), such as how it is ended and how notices were issued.

If you have a dispute about the terms of the agreement, talk to the other person as soon as possible. Be clear about your concern and listen to what the other person has to say.

If you can’t resolve the dispute, contact the Residential Tenancies Authority (RTA) for information about the Act and procedures to follow.

The RTA’s dispute resolution service provides tenancy conciliation to help the parties resolve the dispute, if they are unable to do this themselves.

If the matter can’t be resolved, then it may be necessary to apply to the Tribunal for a decision.