ARVC applauds HUD RV definition

DENVER — The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development has published a proposed rule that would clarify the distinctions between park model RVs and manufactured housing.

HUD proposed the clarifying language based upon a recommendation from the Manufactured Housing Consensus Committee (MHCC) at the request of the Recreation Vehicle Industry Association (RVIA), the National Association of RV Parks and Campgrounds (ARVC), and the Recreational Vehicle Dealers Association (RVDA), all of which have been actively seeking the clarifying language in the HUD Code for the past 16 months.

“We applaud HUD for working with ARVC and our industry allies at RVIA and RVDA to clarify the language in the HUD code so that federal, state and local authorities will no longer confuse park model RVs with manufactured homes,” said Paul Bambei, ARVC’s president and CEO. “We are also grateful to have had RVIA’s and RVDA’s support on this issue.”

Jeff Sims, ARVC’s director of state relations and program advocacy, said, “HUD’s Proposed Rule would provide a clear definition and distinction between park model RVs and manufactured homes which will be extremely beneficial when working with local officials.”

HUD published a proposed rule on Tuesday that clarifies any misconceptions by defining an RV as a unit built on a vehicular structure that is not certified as a manufactured home and that is designed only for recreational use and not as a primary residence or for permanent occupancy.

The Proposed Rule further states that an RV should be built and certified by the manufacturer in accordance with either the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) 1192or the updated American National Standards Institute (ANSI) standard for recreational vehicles, which goes by the code A119.5-15.

HUD also proposes that RVs prominently display on a cabinet or countertop a notice stating that the unit is designed only for recreational use and not as a primary residence or permanent dwelling. HUD is also seeking comments on various issues involving the definition of an RV.

Sims said ARVC’s launching of a grass roots letter writing campaign in late 2014 in conjunction with our industry allies helped to move the issue forward for HUD to propose the clarifying language. HUD had previously planned to require porches to be included in the 400-square-foot limit on park model RVs, but backed off the proposal after nearly 800 park owners sent approximately 2,700 electronic letters to 335 members of Congress opposing the porch requirement.

Park operators and RV industry officials also told Congress that what was really needed was for HUD to clarify the distinctions between park model RVs and manufactured homes.

SOURCE: National Association of RV Parks and Campgrounds press release

Greg Gerber

Greg Gerber

A journalist who has covered the recreation vehicle industry since January 2000, Greg Gerber founded RV Daily Report on April Fool's Day in 2009. He also serves as the editor of the publication and website. As an Eagle Scout, he has enjoyed camping for decades and has visited every state except Hawaii. A DODO -- Dad of Daughters Only -- to three young women, he has two grandchildren as well. He currently splits his time between Wisconsin, Texas and Arizona. Greg can be reached at

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  • Mark ( says:

    One can only guess that Mr. Bambei is not seeing the logic of this language through to its potential end. Let me help explain:

    1. HUD accepts this language
    2. Citizens in communities looking to get rid of “unsightly” RV parks will grasp this language
    3. They will attend city council meetings and say “see HUD says these RVs are not for “primary residence or for permanent occupancy”
    4. The City Council will consult with legal and they will say “Yes HUD has set the rules and they change the definition of an RV. We should follow their rules or potentially lose federal assistance.”
    5. City Council will send a letter to RV Park owner saying “We are aware that you currently have long term guests living in structures not suitable for permanent occupancy. These guests must vacate.”
    6. Park owner calls ARVC and they say “We supported this language change because it helps you install Park Models”
    7. Park owner points out that even Park Models are not suitable to permanent occupancy under these rules.
    8. ARVC asks HUD what is “permanent occupancy”?
    9. HUD says well the closest rule we have says” HUD’s regulatory definition of “permanent housing” states: “The term `permanent housing’ means community-based housing without a designated length of stay, and includes both permanent supportive housing and rapid re-housing.”

    I hope you see the point… by trying to loosely lump Park Models in with RVs this proposed language opens a can of worms for potential problems. There is no definition of permanent occupancy AND there are millions of Americans using a RV right now as a primary residence.

    The industry should step up to the plate and be honest. They want to exempt Park Models so that they can install manufactured homes in locations where they are not allowed by local ordinance. To do this they need to define Park Models as RVs not as manufactured homes which they really… kind of… are.

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