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Manufactured Homes in QLD - Residence Agreements for MH Parks

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Residence Agreements for MH Parks

A Public Information Document forms part of the Residence Agreement and will spell out:

  • exit fees
  • communal facilities available
  • resident age limits
  • contributions for general service charges and the basis of service charge increases
    • these charges are payable throughout your tenure
    • many increases are limited to CPI, but may be varied when a set percentage of residents agree to those changes. Increases over which the operator has no control e.g. rates insurance, taxes, are not limited to CPI.
  • individual residents are responsible for personal consumption costs such as personal liability & contents insurance, electricity, gas, water & phone.
  • fees for maintenance and capital reserve /replacement funds are payable throughout your tenure – additional costs may be incurred where residents request capital improvements or if damage is caused by a particular resident
  • repair or replacement of assets of any items in your home will be at your expense unless covered by a warranty. This will include hot water, solar, wiring, structure wear and tear, garage door, windows painting etc
  • the agreement should also specify operator insurances and your insurance liabilities as a resident, you will have to take out home owner and contents in most places
  • the dispute resolution process – make sure you understand this and this is defined in the Act and you will have to do due process on any issues you want to have dealt with including the Park Owner or Management
  • process for terminating residential agreement – actual resale arrangements will vary between Villages and Parks and should be well understood on entry. This can be critical as there are many stories about owners not being able to dispose of a property due to park rules regarding who can sell the property and under what conditions. The site agreement sets this out and you must be sure you understand that this is not the same as a private sale and has a different process and requires agents and solicitors that understand the requirements. You will be more controlled by the Park Owners rules and do not have the same freedom as private sellers.

In addition to details above, the Residence Agreement will contain information on your resale rights, exit fees, payment from the operator of the exit entitlement, and termination of the agreement.

Whether you plan to leave your Village investment in your estate,  it is imperative that you know exactly what the Termination / Exit provisions are, and any variables that may impact your ability to exercise your options.

General obligations on your behalf as a resident relate to:

  • ensuring the peace, comfort and privacy of other residents
  • the ability of park workers to fulfil their duties free of intimidation bullying or harassment
  • not negatively impacting the health and safety of park workers

Village operators are similarly obligated to residents including, most importantly, not interfering with the autonomy of residents exercising their rights over personal, financial or other matters and their personal possessions. They are also obliged to respond to residents’ correspondence within a defined time frame of thirty days.

Understand the legal issues so you can enjoy your new home. Be aware that operators do have the discretion to act in an emergency where residents may be at risk or to effect urgent maintenance.

Park operators are free to set the in going contribution payable by residents; similarly operators are free to set the basis and amount of exit fees. Both incoming and outgoing fees vary extensively between facilities. Again, gaining a clear understanding of how this will affect you is very important.

The resale process has many of the same elements as the usual real estate selling processes. How this process occurs can vary widely in a Residential Park is based on terms and conditions such as who is entitled to sell, time and limitations and offsetting exit fees legitimately chargeable by the park operator. Herein lies a potential minefield that cannot be explained by any generalisations, but which needs to be sorted out before that time arrives, and preferably before any commitment to buy into a particular MH Park.

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