Park homes for sale and rent in the UK

Setting up a Qualifying Residents Association

Published: 21st September, 2022

Qualifying Residents Association

A formal resident’s association is a useful forum for all residents on a park home estate. It provides a platform where residents can voice and discuss any concerns they have and not to mention can help to bring communities closer. A formal association is also the most effective way to approach a park owner to ensure that residents are heard.

If your park does not currently have a formal association in place, it is worthwhile to consider setting up an informal one to provide the opportunity to harbour a collaborative approach for residents to resolve or address any site issues. However, it is important to be aware, the park owner is not obliged to address any issues raised by the residents with an informal set up, about park operations and management.

There are certain criteria to be met for a QRA to be formally recognised. It must include at least 50 per cent of homeowners on the park. It is important to note that residents who rent their homes cannot join the QRA formally. When calculating the percentage of park home owners, each park home shall be counted as one resident/member and, in the event of there being more than one resident of a park home, the resident whose name first appears on the agreement/written statement is to be taken as the main resident for the QRA.

A QRA is required to retain certain records and documents, for example

  • an up-to-date list of members
  • a constitution
  • any other rules of the association

A QRA member is required to elect individuals for the following roles:

  • Chairperson
  • Secretary
  • Treasurer

The chairperson, secretary and treasurer are permitted to make administrative decisions. Members should vote on all other decisions, and there is only one vote assigned to each park home.

The association must request formal acknowledgement from the park owner in writing addressed to the secretary stating that the association is recognised as a Qualifying Residents' Association. In this notice the residents should also explain how they have met the conditions required. If the park owner fails to accept, an application to the Tribunal can be made. The Tribunal can order that the QRA is recognised in the absence of the site owner recognition.

It is important to note that the QRA is independent from the park owner, therefore anyone who is an agent or employee of the site owner is excluded from membership.

Why is a QRA important?

QRAs hold certain rights. Park owners should consult with the residents’ association when they want to spend money on improvements for the park or change how the park is operated.

Consequently, the park owner must consult with the QRA on any proposed changes regarding the operation or management of the park, as well as any improvements they are planning. Any planned improvement costs must be clearly outlined from the onset and the park owner must also explain if these costs will be considered in the next pitch fee review.

In particular, the law states that the park owner is required to:

  • provide the QRA with at least 28 days’ notice in writing of the matters that require consulting;
  • describe the proposed changes and how they may affect residents, either directly or indirectly, in the long and short term;
  • explain when and where the QRA can make comments; and,
  • take into account any comments made by the QRA before proceeding with the proposed changes.

Does everyone have to join?

The simple answer to this is no. Although strength in numbers is important, so is the ability to make your own choices. So, if the QRA is not something you wish to join on the park you live on, please remember it is not a legal requirement to become a member.

Concluding thoughts:

There is no doubt  that there are huge positives in having a QRA set up and also by being a member. As we have seen in this article, park home owners can set up a “qualifying” residents’ association to represent the park home owner’s community and the benefits of which have been highlighted. A QRA may make liaising with the park owner easier, building neighbourly relations and - where needed - help spread the cost of legal advice.

Courtesy: Ibraheem Dulmeer at Park Homes Law

The information provided in this article serves as useful guidance. Please note that this is not intended to be comprehensive and should not be taken in place of specific legal advice.  This material should not be replicated without the author’s consent. Ibraheem Dulmeer © 2022