https://www.gotocourt.com.au/civil-law/nt/caravan-park-law/

National Legal Hotline

1300 636 846

7am to midnight, 7 days

Call our lawyers now or,
have our lawyers call you

Caravan Park Tenancy (NT)

Updated on Oct 10, 2022 5 min read 297 views Copy Link

Nicola Bowes

Published in Aug 08, 2022 Updated on Oct 10, 2022 5 min read 297 views

Caravan Park Tenancy (NT)

In the Northern Territory, the Caravan Park Act 2012 outlines the rights and responsibilities of caravan park landlords and residents. This legislation sets standards for habitation, maintenance and repairs to caravan residences, and provides mechanisms for both parties to enforce their legal rights. Without familiarity with this legislation, it can be difficult for a landlord or resident to know their legal obligations.

Caravan parks in the Northern Territory

A caravan park is an area of land that contains a complex of caravan sites. A resident in a caravan park has a right of occupancy through an agreement with the park owner. Such parks may or may not include tenant access to common facilities such as bathrooms and laundries.

The Caravan Parks Act 2012 covers those individuals who have signed an agreement to live in a designated caravan park for a statutory length of time. By contrast, the Residential Tenancies Act 1999 covers a person who lives in a caravan on private property and pays rent to a landowner. The Caravan Parks Act 2012 creates a legal framework to govern the obligations of caravan park operators and residents in the Northern Territory. The Act establishes a default agreement for caravan park leases. The legislation also mandates minimum periods of notice that must be given before terminating a tenant’s occupancy. Specifically, the park operator must give three months of notice to terminate a periodic occupancy and 42 days of notice to end a fixed period arrangement. Other notice periods apply during emergency situations such as floods or fires.

This legislation applies when someone lives in the same caravan park for at least five years, or when all of the following apply:

  • Someone signs an agreement to reside in a caravan park for at least 12 months;
  • The agreement requires payment of rent;
  • The agreement is not between friends or family members where only a nominal rent is charged;
  • The park is not advertised exclusively as tourist or holiday accommodation;
  • The site is not operated on a charity basis for the disadvantaged, unemployed or the homeless; and
  • The site does not function as emergency accommodation.

Crucially, if a caravan lease agreement states that the Caravan Parks Act applies to the lease, then the resident is protected by the Act even if the arrangement does not qualify under these conditions. In fact, a caravan park operator must inform a resident before they sign an agreement if the Caravan Parks Act does not apply. An operator who violates this obligation is liable for a ten penalty unit fine.

Resident’s responsibilities under the Caravan Park Act

Under the Caravan Park Act, a resident has certain legal responsibilities. For instance, a resident cannot provide false information to a park operator when entering into an agreement. It is also prohibited for a resident to use the caravan or the site for an illegal purpose, such as drug production or distribution.

The resident must pay an appropriate security deposit upon request and pay their rent in a timely fashion. They cannot change the locks without reasonable excuse, and any damage to the property or need for repair must be reported to the park manager or owner. The resident must keep the caravan and the common spaces in the park and surrounding areas reasonably clean, and not infringe on the privacy and peace of other people staying in the park. Further, the resident must inform their park manager if their caravan will remain unoccupied for more than 30 days, and not sublet the caravan without the park manager’s permission.

Residents’ rights

The Caravan Parks Act clearly articulates the rights of a caravan park resident. For instance, a resident has a right to enjoy the property without undue interruption from the park operator. In addition, the park manager must provide receipts for rental payments if the resident pays by cash or cheque. The rent on a caravan can only be increased if this is provided for in the lease agreement, with a statement of the rate of any increase and the proposed calculation method. Also, a rental increase can only occur six months into a resident’s occupancy or six months after the last increase, and the park operator must give the resident at least 30 days written notice prior to the increase.

The resident is entitled to 24-hour access to their residence. The park facilities, including any communal toilet and shower block, must be properly maintained. Importantly, a resident is entitled to make certain repairs to their caravan and claim the cost back from the park operator. If the manager asks the resident to vacate the caravan, they must be given written notice of termination.

Even when a person living in a caravan in the Northern Territory is not covered by the Caravan Parks Act, they still have contractual rights. These contractual rights accrue if the resident has either a written or verbal agreement with the landlord. However, it can be more difficult to establish a contractual obligation when there is only a verbal agreement between the landlord and tenant.

Go To Court Lawyers can answer any questions you have about your rights as a caravan park operator or resident. Please call 1300 636 846 or email for further assistance.

Published in

Aug 08, 2022

Nicola Bowes

Solicitor

Dr Nicola Bowes holds a Bachelor of Arts with first-class honours from the University of Tasmania, a Bachelor of Laws with first-class honours from the Queensland University of Technology, and a PhD from The University of Queensland. After a decade of working in higher education, Nicola joined Go To Court Lawyers in 2020.
Nicola Bowes

Nicola Bowes

Solicitor

Dr Nicola Bowes holds a Bachelor of Arts with first-class honours from the University of Tasmania, a Bachelor of Laws with first-class honours from the Queensland University of Technology, and a PhD from The University of Queensland. After a decade of working in higher education, Nicola joined Go To Court Lawyers in 2020.

Topics
People helped badge

Affordable Lawyers

Our Go To Court Lawyers will assist you in all areas of law. We specialise in providing legal advice urgently – at the time when you need it most. If you need a lawyer right now, today, we can help you – no matter where you are in Australia.

How It Works

You speak directly to a lawyer
Arrow
Get your legal situation assessed
Arrow
We arrange everything as needed
You speak directly to a lawyer

1. You speak directly to a lawyer

When you call the Go To Court Legal Hotline, you will be connected directly to a lawyer, every time.

Get your legal situation assessed

2. Get your legal situation assessed

We determine the best way forward in your legal matter, free of charge. If you want to go ahead and book a face-to-face appointment, we will connect you with a specialist in your local area.

We arrange everything as needed

3. We arrange everything as needed

If you want to go ahead and book a fact-to-face appointment, we will connect you with a specialist in your local area no matter where you are and even at very short notice.

7am to midnight, 7 days

Call our lawyers now or, have our lawyers call you

1300 636 846
7am to midnight, 7 days
Call our Legal Hotline now