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Your rights if you own a mobile home and rent a pitch

A mobile home is either:

  • a structure that can be moved and lived in

  • a vehicle designed or adapted to be lived in

A railway carriage or a tent do not count as mobile homes.

If you own a mobile home that you live in as your only or main home, your rights depend on where you pitch it. These rights do not apply if you only use the mobile home for holidays.

Your rights will be different if you rent your mobile home.

You could be homeless if you have nowhere permanent to park the mobile home you live in. The council must help you if you are homeless.

A temporary holiday pitch does not count as a permanent place.

Check your rights if you think you could be homeless

Check if you live on an unprotected site

An unprotected site does not have planning permission or a site licence from the council. For example, this could be:

  • a holiday site

  • farmland

  • land owned by your employer

  • someone’s garden

Your rights come from the contract you have with the site owner.

Your rights could be limited, and you may not have the right to stay there if the site owner asks you to leave.

If you refuse to leave, the site owner may need to get a sheriff court order to evict you. While this could give you more time on the site, the court will probably agree to evict you. You could also be ordered to pay the site owner's court expenses.

Check if you live on a protected site

A site is protected if it has planning permission to be a mobile home site, and either:

  • is run by the council

  • has been granted a site licence by the council

The site owner must maintain the site according to their licence.

If you think a protected site is unlicensed

Ask the site owner to see the site licence. It should be on display if there are more than 2 mobile homes in the park.

If they cannot show you a licence, contact the council. They can make sure the site owner licences the site properly. There's a £50,000 fine for running a site without a licence.

If you’re unhappy with the park conditions

Contact the council’s environmental health team. Explain your concerns and ask for their help to put it right.

You can also get help from your local councillor, MSP or MP.

Your rights on a protected site

Getting a written statement

If you want to rent a pitch on a protected site, the site owner must give you a written statement. You must get this at least 28 days before you sign an agreement.

It should tell you:

  • the pitch address

  • the pitch description

  • how long you can rent for

You and the owner can agree to add extra terms. For example:

  • how much pitch fees are

  • any service charges and what they cover

  • how and when the site owner can access your pitch for repairs or maintenance

Getting a lease agreement

Once you park your mobile home on a protected site, you should be given a lease agreement containing certain rights. These rights are called implied terms.

Your lease agreement must say:

  • how the agreement can be ended

  • you have the right to gift your home to someone

  • you have the right to sell your home without the site owner agreeing to who buys it

  • if you die, someone can inherit your home and live there

  • what happens if the mobile home needs to be moved

You and the site owner can agree to add any other terms. These are called express terms. They cannot conflict with the implied terms.

If you do not stick to the terms of the agreement, the site owner could ask you to leave.

Your agreement to rent the pitch continues until either you or the site owner want to end it.

Site rules and conditions

Your lease agreement may have terms about following site rules. This usually covers things like:

  • pets

  • parking

  • hanging out washing

Only site owners can enforce site rules. They cannot change the rules without consulting the site residents.

Selling your home or changing the owner

You have the right to market and sell your home without the site owner agreeing to the buyer.

You have the right to give your home to a family member and sign the agreement to them. The site owner cannot take a fee for this, or change the agreement once it's signed over.

If you die, the pitch agreement can be given to any family member who was living with you at the time.

If no-one was living with you, whoever inherits the home has the right to sell it. They do not have the right to live in the home or give it to anyone else without the site owner’s permission.

Moving your mobile home

The site owner can move your mobile home to another pitch in some circumstances. This is sometimes called re-siting.

They can only do this when:

  • your written statement says they can

  • the new pitch is similar to the original one

  • all costs of re-siting are paid by the site owner

Moving out

To end the agreement, you must give the site owner at least 4 weeks’ notice.

Being evicted

Your landlord or site owner can only evict you in some circumstances.

Check your rights if you’re being evicted from your mobile home site.

If the protected site owner changes

All existing agreements remain in place. You do not have to sign a new agreement. The new owner cannot change the site rules without the agreement of homeowners in the site.

Costs on a protected site

If the site owner wants to increase pitch fees

They must follow what your written agreement says. It should say when fees can be reviewed and how an increase should be calculated.

If you disagree with an increase, write to the site owner and say why you think it's unfair.

If you cannot agree, you can resolve the dispute in court. You’ll need the help of a solicitor to help you apply.

Find a solicitor on the Law Society of Scotland

Solicitors charge for their work. You may be able to get free legal advice or legal aid to help with costs.

Charges for gas and electricity

If your gas and electricity come from the mains supply, then the site owner can only charge you:

  • for what you use

  • the rate they are charged

They cannot sell you any supply for profit.

If you’re unhappy with charges, speak to the site owner. If you think your consumer rights are affected you can get advice from Citizens Advice.

Paying council tax

You usually have to pay council tax if you live in a mobile home. If you're struggling to pay, you may be able to get a council tax reduction.

If you're being harassed on site

Harassment by your landlord or the site owner is a criminal offence. It can include:

  • threatening you

  • stopping you having guests

  • cutting off or restricting your water, gas or electricity supply

  • entering your home when you’re not in or without your permission

Check our advice if you're being harassed by your landlord.

Last updated: 1 November 2023

Housing laws differ between Scotland and England.

This content applies to Scotland only.

Get advice if you're in England