French Mobile Homes: The Costs And Maintenance Every Owner Needs To Know About
Are you thinking about buying a mobile home in France? Before you join the thousands of people already enjoying their holiday homes, take some time to research the fees that come with being a mobile homeowner and some of the maintenance and repairs responsibilities you will be taking on.
The Costs Of Owning A French Mobile Home
To help you work out your budget, here are some of the costs to consider.
Annual rental fees
The main expense of becoming a French mobile homeowner is the annual ‘pitch fee’ to rent the land your mobile home resides. This fee is payable to the campsite and forms part of an annual rental contract.
Your annual rental contract will be issued annually and will detail any fees due and the responsibilities of both parties, the owner and the campsite.
Most campsites will insist you insure your mobile home, not only for peace of mind for your newly owned asset but also to protect your neighbours, the campsite owners and any guests that may stay at your mobile home when you are elsewhere.
The cost and conditions of an insurance policy can differ substantially, so do shop around and make sure you have the cover that is right for you at a reasonable price.
See our guide to insuring your mobile home for more details.
Electricity and water costs
Campsites can charge differently for electricity and water. Many include the fees as part of the annual rent, whilst others may issue a standalone charge.
Most mobiles homes have gas appliances fuelled by two gas bottles fitted externally either at the back or far side of the mobile home. Gas bottles will need regularly purchasing to ensure a continuous supply.
See our guide to Gas at your French property for more on purchasing bottle gas.
Lastly, the final cost you may incur is a fee to use the Wi-Fi connection. You may find this cost is part of your annual rent, but occasionally it can be a standalone charge.
Mobile Home Maintenance
Hopefully, now, you should have an idea of the costs associated with becoming a mobile homeowner. Now we will look at the essential maintenance required to keep your mobile home in good condition.
Essential Mobile Home Maintenance Tips For Owners
Every mobile home will need some maintenance to keep it in tip-top condition for many years to come. Here are some of the checks and maintenance tasks you should carry out periodically.
Interior Maintenance And Inspection Checks
- Check and open the air vents
Mobile homes are prone to suffer from damp, mould and mildew. You can prevent this from happening by opening the windows, doors and skylights as often as possible and keeping the air vents open and clear from debris and blockages when the mobile home is in use.
- Keep your bedding and soft furnishings from touching the walls
To protect your bedding and other soft furnishings, it is a good idea to keep away from the walls and windows when you leave for the winter. You could also store them in vacuum packs.
- Check the smoke and carbon monoxide alarm
Check the batteries work in the smoke and carbon monoxide alarms and have the boiler and appliances PAT tested regularly.
Exterior maintenance and inspection checks
- Check the guttering for obstructions and keep them clean
It is good practice to regularly check and clean out the gutters on your mobile home. Removing rotting materials, twigs, leaves can reduce the risk of any damage to the roofing material and avoid internal water leaks.
- Clean the exterior of your mobile home
Keep the exterior of your mobile home clean by giving it a regular wash reducing any damage caused by tree sap and bird mess.
- Drain down
It is a good idea to get into the habit of draining down after every visit. Draining down means switching off the water supply and draining any excess water left in the systems by running it all out. By draining down, you can reduce the risk of any water damage to your mobile home when it is unoccupied.
- Switch off the gas and electricity
Before leaving your mobile home unoccupied, remember to close and disconnect the gas bottles and turn the electricity supply off at the fuse box by tripping the switches.
- Switch off and disconnect the external water tap
If you have an external water tap, make sure you switch it off after every visit, and if possible, disconnect it all together.
Own a Property or Second Home in France?
Our Essential Reading articles cover everything you need to know as a French homeowner from property taxes and home insurance to paying your bills. Perhaps you also need recommendations on removals to France, advice on building and renovations, or tips for managing a second home? FrenchEntrée is here to help! We can even advise on selling your French property.
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