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Caravan Storage Site Owners' Association (CaSSOA)

In our video guide to the Caravan Storage Site Owners' Association (known as CaSSOA), we tell you all you need to know about this nationally recognised body of the caravan storage industry.

Transcript to guide to the Caravan Storage Site Owners' Association (CaSSOA)

Hi. My name is Iain MacDonald from the specialist caravan insurer, Shield Total Insurance. I'm here inside Guardian Secure Storage in Colchester, an accredited Gold award site, of the Caravan Storage Site Owners’ Association, known as CaSSOA.

CaSSOA is the representative body of the caravan storage industry. It was established in January 1999, with the aim of reducing caravan thefts. It is a non-profit organisation, and now has an approved network of over 500 accredited sites, with site capacity varying from 15 units through to over 1,300 caravans stored.

My name is Andrew Mattin, and I've been a member of the Caravan Storage Site Owners’ Association for 10 years now. I first found out about the Caravan Storage Site Owners’ Association on Google actually, when I was first interested in setting up a storage site. I kept seeing their name, then made an enquiry and had a visit from Ted Young, who had a look at the site and gave me the various details of what I would need to do to bring the site up to a CaSSOA standard site.

Of the half a million touring caravans in use in the UK today, approximately 20%, roughly 80,000 touring caravan units, benefit from CaSSOA secure caravan storage.

A typical customer would be someone living probably in a 60 mile radius of the area here. Someone who perhaps doesn't want to store a caravan at home, can't store the caravan at home, haven't got the room, maybe there's a covenant on the property which doesn't allow storage, don't like to leave a caravan or have a caravan stored at home and then go away and have the fact advertised that they're away. Might have had a caravan stolen and the insurance company have requested they store on a secure CaSSOA site.

Using a tiered system of Bronze, Silver and Gold ensures that each accredited site meets a minimum secure caravan storage standard. The Bronze award indicates a good level of security, whilst the Gold award is the most secure.

Using a points based system, the association conducts a series of site inspections, which assesses, amongst other things, perimeter protection, for example palisade fencing, security lighting, and CCTV to ensure that it complements the physical and electronic security, as well as ensuring there is in place an efficient site management system, so that the access control, usually via a single exit or entry gate, denies access to the unauthorised visitor, as well as monitoring the movements of those permitted to be on site.

Perimeter protection is very important, so we have steel palisade fencing here on the site, infra-red perimeter beams, access control on the gates, on the automated gates.

Now what does it cost? Anywhere between £300 to £450 per annum. Now the actual annual site fee is based on a number of factors. It could be the geographical location, whether you want outdoor or indoor storage, whether it's a single or a twin-axle caravan, as well as the supply and demand for secure caravan storage in the local area.

Well normally for the secure caravan storage, you're looking at probably around about just over a pound a day, so depending on whether it's a single or twin-axle van, £35 to £40 a month, which works out at sort of £420 to £480 a year, so that's the sort of figure you're looking at to store at a high-quality, secure site.

There is an emerging trend of criminals using Google Earth to research the location of unsecure caravans for both theft and easy getaways.

It's mandatory on site to have insurance when you first arrive on site and obviously then to be renewed annually, so we don't allow storage on the site unless there is a valid insurance policy in place.

In my opinion, £1 a night for secure caravan storage is a price worth paying for complete piece of mind.

I would say now eight out of ten people when they come to see us will recognise CaSSOA and the discounts that are offered by insurance companies, for example Shield Total Insurance who will offer up to 25% discount for storing on a CaSSOA Gold award site.

At Shield Total Insurance we offer insurance for any age, make or model of touring caravan. We offer you discounts up to 60% and our award-winning caravan insurance starts from just £48.