Running a residential park
A residential park can have 1 home owners' committee. The committee is formed by an election organised by home owners of the park.
If the home owners' committee at your park sends you a complaint or proposal, you must respond in writing to the committee within 21 days of receiving the written notice.
Find out more about home owners' committees in residential parks.
As the residential park owner, you set the rent for each park site and must ensure rent details are clearly stated in the site agreement.
To increase or decrease rents, you must follow the process below as outlined in the Manufactured Homes (Residential Parks) Act 2003.
Rent can be paid by one of the following approved methods, at a place that must be stated in the site agreement.
- deposit to a financial institution account nominated by you
- credit card
- deduction from pay, pension or other benefit
- another method agreed on between the parties.
If a home owner pays by cash you must give them a rent receipt. You must also provide a rent receipt if the home owner requests one when paying by cheque.
If an electronic payment is made, you must give a site rent record within 7 days of a home owner's request.
Site rent increases covered by site agreement
As the park owner, you can propose a general increase in site rent that uses the methods specified in the site agreement.
A site agreement may allow for a site rent increase using multiple bases (CPI and market review), but only one basis may be used at a time.
All general site rent increases for a particular basis must occur on the general increase day, which is a day nominated by you for that basis. A general site rent increase for a site can't occur more than once a year.
You must notify residents of any proposed general increase in site rent. You must provide this notice to the home owner at least 35 days before the nominated general increase day.
The home owner has 28 days to dispute the increase in writing through the dispute resolution procedures.
Site rent increases to cover special costs
In certain circumstances, you may increase site rents in a residential park to cover special costs using methods not contained in the site agreement.
There are 3 types of special cost:
- operational costs – a significant increase in the cost of running a park such as rates, taxes or utility costs for the park
- repair costs – the cost of significant repairs to common areas or communal facilities in the park that you couldn't have reasonably foreseen
- upgrade costs – the cost of significant upgrades to common areas or communal facilities in the park.
You must notify residents of any proposed increase in site rent to cover special costs. You must provide this notice to home owners at least 2 months before the proposed date of the rent increase.
If a home owner disagrees with a site rent increase to cover a special cost or doesn't respond to the notice, you can assume that they dispute the site rent increase. You can then begin dispute resolution procedures.
Decreasing site rent
The home owner can apply to QCAT seeking a reduction in their rent when:
- the quality of your residential park's common areas and shared (communal) facilities have decreased substantially
- you remove a shared (communal) facility or service that you provided when the site agreement started
- a shared (communal) facility or service as described in advertising, or in another document made available to the home owner before they entered the site agreement, has not been provided in the residential park.
You may reduce a home owner's rent if:
- a utility charge included in the rent becomes separately measured or metered and the home owner has to pay separately for the use of the utility
- a utility stops being available to the home owner through no fault of their own.
In most cases, utilities in residential parks are not included in the site rent. These are generally paid for separately by the home owner to the park owner.
You cannot charge more for the supply of a utility to residents than the actual cost charged to you by your supply authority.
In the case of electricity supply, only the actual cost of the electricity can be passed on to the home owner and no extra fees or charges can be added to their electricity bill. Park owners who charge in excess of the cost of a home owner's supplied electricity may be in breach of the Manufactured Homes (Residential Parks) Act 2003 and penalties may apply.
You can include a component cost in the site rent to cover the cost of providing electricity and maintaining the electricity network or other infrastructure charges. This should be explained in the site agreement.