Did you know there are currently over 2,000 park sites in the UK with over 200,000 people living in them? The park home way of life appeals to lots of people from all walks of life for many reasons; the laid back way of life, low purchase and living costs (often releasing funds to enjoy retirement), high security and idyllic locations are major appealing factors.
Sadly though many park home owners who have bought older park home models have found themselves living in a home that is not sufficiently insulated which means they are cold, draughty and very costly to heat.
Lack of insulation
Park homes built before 2005 (when insulation standards weren’t included in the British Standard for park homes) are often poorly insulated. This has left many people vulnerable to low temperatures and exposure to the cold leaves people susceptible to viruses and illnesses that could potentially be fatal.
Tens of thousands of older people living in park homes are putting their health at risk as they struggle to keep warm over the winter, due to the high cost of heating, according to new research by Age UK
Fuel is costly
As many park homes do not have access to the mains gas grid, residents have to rely on more expensive fuels like LPG (Liquid Petroleum Gas), oil and electricity to heat their homes. It’s common for park site owners to already have a supply agreement in place which restricts park home owners ability to shop around for a better deal.
In a new Age UK survey of over 200 park home residents aged 65 plus, over half reported they faced problems staying warm in their home over the winter months and a similar proportion said their health problems were made worse by cold weather.
A need for Government funding
The Green Deal Home Improvement Fund had previously provided funding for park home owners up to £6,000 to enable people to insulate their park homes. But with this scheme scrapped many pensioners are struggling to find funds to cover the cost. Pockets of funding do periodically become available, for example Help to Heat schemes, Disability grants etc but the problem is that different councils administer this in different ways, depending on the needs of their community, so it can be hard to track down.
Organisations such as Age UK are calling on the government to roll out an energy efficiency scheme tailored to park home residents who are on low incomes or basic State Pension. It is extremely important for older park home residents to keep warm because their health could be in jeopardy.
Ways to make a park home more energy efficient
Given the right funding availability there’s really not much science to improving the energy efficiency of a park home. The addition of modifications such as installation of External Wall Insulation, Underfloor Insulation, energy efficient windows and doors, efficient boilers and draught excluders will have a dramatic effect. Wall insulation alone can save up to 50% on energy bills.
Thanks for reading.