Mobile Home Park Investing Articles

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Why The Article “The Truth About Trailer Parks: Poor Forced To Live Among Sex Offenders And Felons As Owners Cash In” Has Nothing To Do With Truth But A Lot To Do With Sensationalism

We all know that media groups have to peddle stories, but not since the prime of Jerry Springer have article titles been so lacking in credentials. Although the writer was unable to insert space aliens into the title, or a sighting of Big Foot, it still contains plenty of fantasy. So let’s break it down into easy, truthful pieces.

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Is The Guardian Jealous Of The Mobile Home Park Business Model?

The Guardian recently requested free passes to attend our Mobile Home Park Boot Camp, which we happily gave them. We get requests from media outlets all the time, which are gathering information for a story. The Guardian said that they were doing a piece on alternative investments, but we knew better. Still, we like to give any legitimate group the truth about the mobile home park business, so that they can at least get their facts straight about the affordable housing industry. However, this reporter apparently was not paying attention in class, or was trying to make a name for himself. Regardless, there are a few points that need to be made to bring the article into perspective.

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Why Mobile Home Parks Have Such An Unfair Advantage In Commercial Real Estate

America takes pride in the concept of freedom of competition. That's the reason that the Federal Government blocks potential mergers through anti-trust complaints. And the reason that we have laws against unfair competition. We're the country that puts people in jail for price fixing, and even elects our President through freedom of choice. So how in the world did mobile home park owners get such an unfair advantage - the ability to completely avoid free competition and operate in an environment free of competitive forces?

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Manufactured Home Community Cyber Liability Growing Fast

In the past, most lawsuits against small business revolved around bodily injury or tangible property damage. Product liability, slip and fall claims, injured employees and damaged property accounted for most losses. Prudent business practices and traditional insurance are good defenses against these risks. But with today’s rapidly growing computer centric world, that’s changed.

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The Case Against Land-Lease Community Terminology

The mobile home park industry has attempted to re-invent itself many times in the past. Unfortunately, it always seems to revolve around just changing its name, and nothing else. And the name change does little to actually accomplish anything of value, but only serves to confuse people on a product that is already chock full of misconceptions. So here's an analysis of why the "land-lease" name is not the greatest idea.

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Is That Dog Heading To Our Mobile Home Park

New Court rulings and Federal laws are opening the door to allow a parade of dogs and other animals onto your property. In many instances, either the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) or the Fair Housing Act (FHA) give your tenants the right to keep a dog or other pet even though your community rules would otherwise prohibit such. Disabled people may request that they be allowed to keep "service animals" and "emotional support animals." Presuming the tenant and animal meet the proper definitions, community management must allow the animal to stay. A "service animal" is defined as a dog that is trained to do work or perform tasks for a person with a disability. "Emotional Support Animals" are broadly defined as any animals, whether trained or not, which provide emotional support and alleviate symptoms of a disability.

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Don’t Put It In Writing

Here are two conflicting things lawyers often say. The first is, "You better have it in writing." Many contracts must be in writing to be enforceable, particularly if they last longer than six months, involve real estate, or are for more than $500. Having an agreement in writing helps clarify any terms which may cause confusion. The second is, “If only my enemy had sent me a letter.” When this happens, you can now prove your adversary’s thoughts with their own words. There’s no better evidence than that. This article is about the beauty of not putting it in writing.

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Employee Paperwork: The Feds Are Coming

If you have been worried about America’s spending binge not resulting in action, here’s some fine news. The Federal government is putting your money (actually, much of the money is borrowed) to work. A $138 million federal employee compliance worksite enforcement effort is underway in 2013. Federal agents are tasked with verifying that employers fully comply with 21 different federal labor laws. Even the smallest companies must comply with some of the laws and are audit targets. In short, your company’s chances of being audited have increased.

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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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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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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 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 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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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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