Mobile Home Park Investing Articles

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Should I Report This to My Insurance Company?

Business owners Mobile Insurance serves often ask me whether to report a loss to their insurance company. Payment of any part of a claim is in the short term best interest of the client. However, some claims may result in a lower payout than the additional future insurance premiums charged by an insurance company because of the reported claim. Therefore, the key question is whether you will receive more benefits for this claim than you will be charged in future additional premiums.

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Obama Vs. Romney: The Winner Is Affordable Housing

Whether you’re Republican or Democrat, there are some issues that are not in question. One is that we are facing a growing element of America that cannot afford traditional housing options. There are 10,000 people PER DAY who are retiring and converting to living on meager social security and tiny pensions. The average retiring American worker will be living on around $2,000 per month. And the number of American families living on $30,000 per year or less is now around 50% of our total population. It doesn’t matter who wins the election, the surge of demand for low-cost housing is going to continue to grow far greater than the supply can possible absorb.

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Mobile Home Park Operator? This Is Why You Are Most Likely To Be Sued.

I was surprised to learn recently, 75% of all civil matters filed in the U.S. are employment related. The average settlement of these claims is $40,000. In 10% of the cases that go to trial, the judgment exceeds $1,000,000. If you think you are in a solid conservative part of the country where you are insulated from these claims, know that good ol’ Texas has more employment law lawsuits than any other state.

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I've Been Sued. Now What?

Being served with a lawsuit is no fun. For many, it’s scary and confusing. A lawsuit (aka: Petition/Complaint/Claim for Relief/etc.) is a legal document that outlines someone else’s complaints against you. It’s a one sided story that may not have any basis in reality. Take a deep breath. Don’t panic. Here’s a plan.

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Hurricane Preparation Guide / 10 Point Plan

The latest track shows Hurricane Isaac to be a Category 1 storm that will track through the New Orleans area then N, NW all the way through northern LA. This will likely affect our clients in Hammond, Gonzales, Alexandria, Denham Springs, Houma, Prairieville, Alexandria, Opelousas, Morgan City, Monroe, LA and South and Eastern Mississippi. Here's Ten key recommendations:

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I Don’t Have Any Company Auto Liability Risk. Really?

Many small businesses own one or no motor vehicles. Because of this, small business managers often assume they have only limited company auto liability exposure. But look a little closer, and you may find that’s not the case.

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Why invest in a Mobile Home Park?

When you write about mobile home park returns you always run the risk of being branded a liar, as nobody believes that you can make 20% plus returns on anything anymore. With a stock market that makes 2% a year, and CDs that make 1%, and single family homes that lose money, investors are just conditioned to expect a low single-digit return - and if you suggest more, they just discard that thinking as a bunch of hype that they've heard before in the days of the dot com and housing bubbles.

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Mystery Solved: Workers Compensation Insurance

Workers compensation insurance is a mystery to many. People with employees ask me from time to time whether they need workers compensation insurance. My reply is meant to catch their attention, “Not if you can afford to pay an employee’s medical expenses and lost wages… for life.” When an employee is injured on the job, workers compensation insurance pays their wages and medical expenses for as long as they are injured. Also, those that carry workers compensation insurance cannot be sued in civil court for on the job injuries. When your business carries workers compensation insurance, its benefits are the employees’ only option. A few years ago, a Texas worker lost a finger in a work-related accident. As his employer didn’t carry workers compensation insurance, the employee was allowed to sue in civil court. His silver-tongued lawyer had the jury in tears and won a $21 million dollar judgment… for a finger! Had the employer had workers compensation insurance, the claim would have paid medical expenses (about $2,000) plus $7,200 of indemnity. Plus, it’s likely there would have been no trial.

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While Waiting On The Supreme Court: What Is Happening To Health Care Costs And Insurance?

For the last six months, I've served on The Woodlands, Texas Chamber of Commerce Health Care Program Committee. These efforts culminated on April 27th with a conference that featured health care providers, hospital CEO's, health insurance professionals, and a Congressman. As business owners and managers, these issues affect us more than most. The following are some of the interesting facts and observations accumulated during my time on the Committee:

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Top 10 Dumb Mobile Home Park Management Ideas

Decide to save money by reusing old rickety wood steps without hand rails on all your show homes

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Community Management: The $20,000 Dog

It's exciting. You just purchased a manufactured home community. It has fifty (50) sites, forty eight (48) of which are occupied by home owning tenants paying $300/month in rent. You were pleased to purchase it for $960,000, or $20,000 per site. And now that it's time to begin managing the community, you discover three things. First, four of your tenants own large dogs (a German Shepherd, a Pit Bull, a Rottweiler, and a Chow). Second, your insurance agent has advised you that your insurance company strongly discourages allowing tenants to own such dogs and will non-renew or cancel your insurance if you don't force the dogs out of the park. Third, all four dog owning tenants have nice homes, are good neighbors, pay their rent timely, manage their dogs well, and will leave if their dogs have to go.

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Top 10 Mistakes Made When Insuring A Mobile Home Park

Failure to list/insure all your improvements on your policy. Many simply don’t include above ground utility infrastructure, signs, fences and smaller buildings

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How To Get Zero Down Financing On A Mobile Home Park

With single-family homes, a legitimate zero down deal is about as likely as sleet in San Diego. However, with mobile home parks, they are as common as rain. of the 25 mobile home parks I've bought, about five of them or 20% -- were zero down.

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How To Accept And Love Your Mobile Home Park Utilities

When you first buy a mobile home park, you are a little terrified of your water and sewer system. "What if it breaks down?" you worry. "Can I afford to fix it?". "Will my tenants get mad and leave if the water goes out for a couple days?".

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How Mobile Home Parks Make More Money Than Single-Family Home Investing

Just about anybody who watches late night TV, or receives email, or reads, knows that there are hundreds of people promoting concepts to make money in single family homes. "Buy foreclosures", "profit from short sales", "wholesale houses" there are at least 1,000 different concepts. Unfortunately, the only people who actually make money in many of these ideas are the promoters. There are so many people chasing after single-family homes to invest in that the market is beyond saturated, and any profitability has been extinguished.

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How To Make Huge Returns On Mobile Home Parks

When you write about mobile home park returns you always run the risk of being branded a liar, as nobody believes that you can make 20% plus returns on anything anymore. With a stock market that makes 2% a year, and CDs that make 1%, and single family homes that lose money, investors are just conditioned to expect a low single-digit return - and if you suggest more, they just discard that thinking as a bunch of hype that they've heard before in the days of the dot com and housing bubbles.

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How To Charge A Late Fee In A Mobile Home Park

Mobile home park tenants are not rich. Most of them live from paycheck to paycheck. As a result, they frequently don't pay their bills on time sometimes at all. To motivate these tenants to pay their lot rent on time, you must enact a late fee for rent that is not received by the due date. However, enacting such a plan is a lot more complicated than most park owners recognize. And messing up the plan can cause extreme legal and financial penalties. Here are a few initial points to consider:

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Evaluating Mobile Home Park Investments

So how do I determine what a specific mobile home park is worth? I want to know how many lots there are, how many are occupied and paying, what the lot rent is, what expenses the owner is paying, and who is responsible for the water lines, sewer lines, and roads.

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Don't Hold Park Residents To A Higher Standard Than Their Subdivision Neighbors - It's Not Good For You Or Them!

Most every mobile home park owner in the U.S. has a list of rules attached to their lease which is longer than the lease itself. While it's always a good idea to cover your bases and address every possible behavior concern, it's another to expect people to follow more rules than the local prison.

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Do Mobile Homes Have A Shelf Life?

Am I supposed to take the roof off and smell manufactured homes to see if they've spoiled like milk? Do they have an expiration date stamped on the frame? Can you fit one in a curbside polycart?

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Differences Between A Mobile Home Park and RV Park

When considering the purchase of a mobile home park as compared to an RV park there are many factors to consider. While mobile home parks and RV parks are often sold by the same brokers and are combined in one facility, they are not the same and both require different amounts and types of management. The following comparisons are for Overnight/Destination RV parks as compared to the typical mobile home park in which the lots are rented out on a monthly basis. In many cases, the seasonal or extended stay RV parks will have more of the qualities of the typical mobile home park rather than those of the Overnight/Destination type RV parks.

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Buying A Mobile Home Park Is Like Flying An Airplane

Everyone knows that commercial air travel is the safest in the world. But that's because of the high level of training of the pilots. From the pre-flight checklist, to the flight plan, to dealing with problems in the air, the pilot knows everything about what they're doing. The pilot who successfully landed in the Hudson River recently, did so because he knew every possible strategy of what to do in an emergency - he knew the options and could make an intelligent decision.

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Top 10 Mistakes Park Owners Make That Result In Avoidable Liability Losses

Top 10 Mistakes Park Owners Make That Result In Avoidable Liability Losses

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Beware Of The Seller Finance Trap

There are few things more attractive about the mobile home park business than seller financing. Non-recourse seller financing allows the buyer to escape the hassle and scrutiny of bank lending, while at the same time offering some degree of insurance against fraud (you have not yet paid the seller in full), the ability to give the park back and walk clean in the event of catastrophe, and often includes a below-market interest rate and longer loan term.

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A Great Sign For Your Mobile Home Park Is An Investment, Not A Cost

Most mobile home parks I have bought come with a standard sign design - a 4'x8' sheet of plywood with a faded poorly written name on it and no phone number. This must be a popular design because I see it everywhere. There is also the design of metal or wood letters on a brick or masonry wall with some of the letters missing. My favorite was on where some kid had yanked off the letters and then spray painted some replacements so that the sign said proudly "F___ Y__ Estates". What was equally funny what that the owner cared so little about the sign that he did nothing about it -- I drove by several years later it was still that way.

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