Manufactured home park disputes

QCAT hears a range of disputes relating to manufactured home parks including rent problems, utility costs, varying special terms, maintenance of the park, terminating site agreements and changing park rules.

Caxton Legal Centre's Queensland Retirement Village and Park Advice Service (QRVPAS) is a specialist service providing free information and legal help. It offers this service for residents and prospective residents of retirement villages and manufactured home parks.

Contact QRVPAS online or via 07 3214 6333.

A manufactured home is also known as a mobile home. It is a structure other than a caravan or tent, that:

  • has the character of a dwelling house; and
  • is designed to be moved from one position to another; and
  • is not permanently attached to land.

A residential park is an area of land that includes:

  • sites; and
  • common areas; and
  • facilities for the personal comfort, convenience or enjoyment of persons residing in manufactured homes positioned on sites.

To help resolve a residential park dispute, you can follow this three-step process.

You may also contact a Dispute Resolution Centre, which offers free confidential and impartial mediation services to assist in resolving your dispute.

Step 1 – negotiation

You must first try to resolve the dispute within the park. Write to the other party stating your dispute and nominating a date for a meeting. You must give notice of at least 14 days, but no more than 28 days. The other party must respond in writing within 7 days of receiving the notice. The other party can nominate another date for the meeting, but it must be within 7 days of the first nominated date. You must then meet to resolve the dispute.

Step 2 – mediation

If you cannot resolve your dispute through the negotiation in step 1, you may apply to the Principal Registrar of QCAT to refer the dispute to mediation.

A mediator will be appointed and you will be given notice of the date, time and location of the mediation. The mediation is held in private.

You may be represented by a lawyer or agent at the mediation unless the mediator is satisfied you should not be represented.

If an agreement is reached at the mediation, the mediator records the agreement in writing, it is signed by the parties, and a copy is given to you and QCAT.

Step 3 – hearing

If the dispute is not resolved at mediation you may apply to QCAT for a hearing before the tribunal.

Exclusion from the three step process

In some circumstances, you can apply to QCAT for a hearing without going through steps 1 and 2.

These include:

  • where a park owner applies to QCAT for an order terminating the site agreement on certain specific grounds;
  • where the home owner applies to QCAT before the termination day for an order extending the time for giving the park owner vacant possession of the site;
  • where the park owner applies to QCAT for an order declaring that the home owner has abandoned the home and the day the home was abandoned;
  • where the park owner applies to QCAT for an order authorising the park owner to sell the home or personal effects to a prohibited person on the conditions, if any, stated in the order;
  • where the park owner applies to QCAT for an order giving the park owner an entitlement to receive an amount paid into the unclaimed moneys fund, on account of after-termination rent;
  • where the park owner or park manager applies to QCAT for an order permitting the park owner or park manager to enter the site for a stated purpose.