MEMBERS of a Hartlepool residential park group are throwing their weight behind a national campaign to change a law which allows the owners of mobile home sites to claim 10 per cent of any property sold.
The Elmtree Community Action Group – which is made up of residents from Elmtree Park for mobile homes, off Queen Street, in Seaton Carew – is backing the National Park Home Residents Justice Campaign.
The aim of the campaign is to change an “unjust” law which allows the owners of mobile home sites to take a 10 per cent cut of the sale price of properties, and also every time it is sold thereafter.
The protest will be taken to the Houses of Parliament, along with a 200,000-strong petition, where representatives of the mobile home owners will put forward their arguments for overturning the law.
Today, Ken Hayes, chairman of the Elmtree Community Action Group, said: “This has been a thorn in the foot for many years, but we’ve never had the power to do anything about it.
“It just creates a ‘them-and-us’ situation.
“It is a bone of contention all of the time and it sours relations between park owners and residents.”
Ken, 82, added: “It encourages bad ownership really and it doesn’t give park residents a chance at all.
“For example, if you have someone living on the park then the owner could do all sorts of things to make that person want to leave and see their mobile home, of which the park owner gets the rent until it’s sold, and then a 10 per cent cut.
“The money would be better off going to our beneficiaries.
“I mean the owners get their rent, why should they get a cut of how much the properties are worth?”
Colette Wright, who runs the site, added: “The 10 per cent commission that is paid by home owners on Elm Tree Park is in line with all residential parks in the UK.
“Home owners are made aware of the commission charge when they purchase a home and therefore agree to pay this amount when they sell their home.
“The commission is essential to park home economics, without it pitch fees would have to increase to take in account the loss of income otherwise infrastructure and maintenance on the park would suffer.”