Rains fail to dampen caravan park sector

Picture: PA
Picture: PA
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WET weather during the peak summer weeks failed to put a dampener on the holiday and caravan park markets last year, according to a market trends report.

Despite the poor weather in the height of summer 2015, there were steady improvements in both sales of parks and trading conditions on parks, it said.

This was largely down to fine weather in spring and autumn, together with improved economic conditions, says the 26th annual Market Report from Edwards and Partners, a division of national chartered surveyor, Sanderson Weatherall.

The report reveals particular growth for the residential sector, with strong demand for park home estates in spite of the extra workload imposed by the new regulations flowing from the 2013 Mobile Homes Act. Chris Tucker, partner at Sanderson Weatherall, said: “It’s been another year of steady growth for the market. Most holiday park operators have reported a successful 2015, even if they did face a washout in the peak summer months, and caravan and lodge sales appear to have remained strong – especially at the top end of the market.

“The sunny spring and autumn were clearly beneficial and forward bookings for the main season were boosted by the two recent fine summers in 2013 and 2014.

“Low inflation, falling fuel prices and an increase in average earnings also helped to support the sector.”

Chris Tucker added that the strong uplift in values seen in the residential park sector was due to increased demand for individual homes.

He added: “There are some extremely positive signs that the sale of new homes in some parts of the country have really taken off this year. This has created a strong demand for vacant pitches spanning the whole market in terms of value; a phenomena we have not seen since the pre-recession boom years.

“In fact, the average pitch value for residential park homes has risen 6 per cent from £25,000 to £26,500 in the last 12 months.

“This could be a welcome side effect of new legislation, which may have boosted the appeal of residential park living.”