The design and construction of park homes has improved beyond measure in the last 20 years and today’s modern park home bears little resemblance to the 'caravan' style homes built in the 1960s and 1970s.
Pitched tile effect roofs, double glazed UPVC doors and windows, central heating, underfloor and wall insulation, the latest appliances, walk-in wardrobes, en-suite bedrooms, open plan design, porches, conservatories, bay windows, the list goes on and on. There is no doubt that the modern home is built to exacting standards and boasts exciting and contemporary designs.
However, it is true to say that on any park there are still a large number of older homes that have stood the test of time due to their robust and high quality construction, a degree of tender loving care and, in many cases, some significant investment. As a result it is often impossible to guess the original age of the home.
Whilst manufacturers have, generally speaking, upped their game, although after sales can still be an issue, there are now a good number of refurbishers, some of whom advertise in this publication, who are able to completely transform a home and to a very high specification too. In some cases the home is stripped right back to the chassis!
It is apparent that park home insurers take a mixed view of older homes, adopting a contrasting underwriting approach. Some apply a strict age limit, typically 20 years or so, some apply higher premiums, in some cases considerably higher, whilst others apply what could be considered to be prohibitive excesses, as much as £500 for loss or damage arising from the escape of water, on the basis presumably that older homes are more likely to suffer from a burst pipe or escape of water. That seems to be an irrational approach given that many older homes have been completely refurbished from top to bottom.
Paul Baker Insurance Services (PBIS) adopt a more pragmatic approach; the main consideration for them is not the age of the home but its condition. So for homes than 20 years of age exterior photographs of the home will be required and further questions will be asked about the home to establish how well it has been maintained.