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Denverite: To protect tenants against predatory landlords, this nonprofit wants lawyers to think like organizers

Preview:

The Justice for the People Legal Center doesn’t yet have a website, but the new nonprofit law firm is already inundated with requests for representation, largely for cases related to housing and labor issues.

The nonprofit is the product of years of collaboration between a long-time local organizer and a lawyer who hope to bring a community organizing approach to the legal world. While Denver has plenty of public interest law firms, it’s not a city known for “movement lawyering,” a specific approach to law that directly partners with organizers and activists. Executive Director Dre Chiriboga-Flor and lawyer Jason Legg want that to... Read More

Our thoughts on this story:

I didn’t realize that the biggest predator species in Colorado is apparently not mountain lions or bears but instead the dreaded “landlord” creature. I hear they live in the mountains and swoop down on the first of the month to get checks from their prey. They’ve tried to photograph them, but they are extremely elusive. 

KTXS: Merkel ISD purchased mobile park, displacing dozens of families

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ABILENE, Texas — On December 21st residents of Sunset Mobile Home and RV Park received a letter from Merkel ISD informing them that the school district is now their landlord and will soon require everyone on the property to leave.

Shelley LeBlanc who moved to the mobile park 8 years ago after she lost her home in Abilene to a fire feels like the school district is making her feel the pain of losing a home all over again.

“It’s not fair,” LeBlanc said.

The mobile homeowner said it felt like a punch to the chest when she read that her family was getting kicked out of the home, they invested over $30 thousand into effective July 1st.

“We paid...

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Our thoughts on this story:

So a school district can buy a mobile home park and then shut it down without warning or compensation and not a word is said – while at the same time an “evil” private sector developer can do the exact same thing and be met with litigation, the city council trying to block all redevelopment options and the media in a frenzy of outcry and threats?

Can you say “hypocrisy” anyone?

Claremont Courier: San Dimas awarded $1.5 million for mobile home upgrades

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The City of San Dimas was recently awarded $1.5 million from the California Department of Housing and Community Development’s Manufactured Housing Opportunity and Revitalization Program for low income mobile home owners to upgrade their residences.

Grants of up to $40,000 will allow San Dimas mobile homeowners to “make critical health and safety repairs, as well as make meaningful upgrades to their homes for energy-efficiency savings, refurbishments, restoration, and more,” according to a news release. “This initiative is expected to enhance the quality of life for residents and extend the lifespan of these affordable properties.”

The...

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Our thoughts on this story:

First of all, whenever I hear of “San Dimas” I think of the movie Bill & Ted’s Excellent Adventure (which is where the fictional movie is located). And in this case San Dimas is on its own excellent adventure in actually advancing a good idea that is becoming more popular with many states, counties and cities:

“Grants of up to $40,000 will allow San Dimas mobile homeowners to “make critical health and safety repairs, as well as make meaningful upgrades to their homes for energy-efficiency savings, refurbishments, restoration, and more,” according to a news release. “This initiative is expected to enhance the quality of life for residents and extend the lifespan of these affordable properties.”

This is the framework of true affordable housing progress in the U.S.

WGRZ: In Town of Lockport, two mobile home parks pay a combined $83.8M in taxes

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LOCKPORT, N.Y. — In the Town of Lockport, two mobile home parks are the bulk of the 10 largest taxpayers for the 2023 tax levy.

They pay a combined $83.8 million of the top 10's assessment of $212.8 million, which is 39.4% of the town's tax roll.

Buffalo Business First is taking a look at the top taxpayers in a number of municipalities around Buffalo Niagara, and we'll share the results over the next few months. Why? Any significant changes in how these companies operate is bound to have an outsized fiscal impact on the municipalities where they’re based.

See the list below, with some details following. The data, for the fiscal year...

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Our thoughts on this story:

See if you can make sense of this story.

I looked up the Woodlands park that the story references and found it to have 1,235 lots at about a $700 lot rent, which equates to a revenue of around $10,374,000 annually. Assuming the other park is just as large then total revenue is around $20 million annually. It’s just basic math.

So if that’s the case, then how could the two parks pay $83.8 million in property taxes annually against $20 million of total revenue?

I’m assuming that the writer made a typo or misinterpreted the actual information. If we were on a game show we’d guess that the $20 million revenue yields $14 million in net income which equates to around $200 million in valuation and, at a 3% property tax rate = $6 million in annual property tax.

Therefore, I’m betting the actual number is $8.38 million and NOT $83.8 million.

If I’m wrong on this, please educate me on how any of this is possible mathematically.

Flagler Live: Bulow RV Park Has 6 Months to Solve Compliance Crisis, Pledging Not to Evict Anyone. But a Solution is Elusive.

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There will be no evictions at Bulow RV Park at least through the end of July. The Flagler County Commission extracted that concession from Bulow park management this afternoon in exchange for a stay on enforcing county regulations against dozens of RV sites that have become unregulated, permanent home, in violation of both county code and park rules. But park management doubts six months will be sufficient for a permanent solution, and county officials are finding their powers so limited that should evictions resume, there won’t much they can do.

For years, and under the nose of management, supposedly temporary residents at the 45-acre...

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Our thoughts on this story:

What this all boils down to is that the city is now saying that RVs can only be in the park for 6 months while people have been living there full-time for decades. Why the change in attitude by the city? You know the answer. It’s probably because kids are moving into those RVs with their parents and the city doesn’t want to pay the tuition (in fact, the article mentions the recent school crossing sign). So at a time when the affordable housing crisis in the U.S. is at its worse, here’s another government agency trying to basically shut a park down. In San Francisco they’re letting people live in tents on the city streets, but here we have a city that won’t let people live in RV park spaces at no danger to anyone and completely compliant with the precedent that’s been going on for decades.

Once again, there’s only word for this behavior: hypocrisy.

Richmond Time-Dispatch: Remaking a mobile home park at Bermuda Estates in Chester

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In recent years, the usual aggravations of life in mobile home communities have been overlain with a new anxiety: that landlords were looking to cash in by selling out to developers with other ideas about what the land is good for.

The peculiar tenure of mobile home park residents on their homes — owning the structures but not the land on which they were parked — makes that worry about the landlord’s intentions unlike what any other tenants might face.

“We were always afraid of being evicted; I was trying to save enough over two or three years so I could find another place in case they sold the park,” said Cesia Luque, who has lived for...

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Our thoughts on this story:

What a shocker – woke media outlets working in unison to try and brainwash you that the mobile home park business only works when the tenants own the land and are therefore free from “evil” developers.

"In recent years, the usual aggravations of life in mobile home communities have been overlain with a new anxiety: that landlords were looking to cash in by selling out to developers with other ideas about what the land is good for."

I wonder how many times you have to repeat the same false narrative before readers start thinking it’s true? Let me try it. CARTER WAS A GREAT PRESIDENT. CARTER WAS A GREAT PRESIDENT. CARTER WAS A GREAT PRESIDENT. Are you convinced now? Well, the media is hoping so. They are obviously working together to write multiple articles on the same narrative at the same time – kind of like a coordinated attack on our intelligence.

Bangor Daily News: Bangor tiny home park slated to finish within 6 months

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More than half of the tiny homes planned for a former Bangor mobile home park have been built since the city approved the project last February.

At the development, located in the former Martel mobile home park at 1337 Hammond St., about 20 of the 34 tiny homes have been built, according to Bangor landlord Louie Morrison, one of the developers of the park.

Since Morrison’s crew can build three homes in about a month, he said the development was intended to quickly add more quality, affordable housing at a time when the city desperately needs it.

“At the end of the day, these homes are a real solution to a real problem,” Morrison said....

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Our thoughts on this story:

Articles like this should serve as a wake-up call to the MH manufacturing industry as you have 400 sq. ft. tiny homes beating out 1,000+ sq. ft. mobile homes for demand – even at $1,200 per month price points.  The industry must accept that it must have a terrible stigma problem when you can re-package a smaller version of the product in any wrapper other than “mobile home” and it sells ten times faster and at a higher price per square foot. The only way to get rid of the stigma – it appears to me – is to radically change the exterior of mobile homes and tack on a better name. Just as the optics of an elongated rectangle sitting on stilts is clearly not a crowd pleaser, even the name “mobile home” or “manufactured home” is a sales loser. “Tiny homes” came out of nowhere and, with the aid of a few HGTV shows, have already blown mobile homes out of the water with consumer preference. Surely, manufacturers must find this alarming.

Nasdaq: Unlock Wealth Opportunities With These 5 Mobile Home Park Investment Secrets

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When you think of investments to add to your portfolio, mobile home parks might not be near the top of your list. However, the land these communities sit on has the potential for profitable returns and fewer headaches than other real estate types. As an investor (and potential landlord), you don’t have as much upkeep since the residents own their homes.

And there are syndication or real estate investment trust options if you want to completely remove yourself from the landlord equation. While the investment opportunity mobile home parks present may no longer be entirely under the radar, it’s still somewhat overlooked. However, big-name...

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Our thoughts on this story:

This article was obviously written by AI but it does have some good points.

Idaho Statesman: New mobile homes in Idaho are more costly than anywhere else in the nation. Here’s why Read more at: https://www.idahostatesman.com/news/business/article283872678.html#storylink=cpy

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Just because mobile homes are more affordable than site-built homes doesn’t mean they’re cheap — especially in Idaho. In fact, the cost of a new mobile home is more expensive in the Gem State than anywhere else in the country, according to a new report from Lending Tree, a North Carolina-based online lending marketplace. Can you guess how much one might cost? The average sales price of a new mobile home in Idaho in 2022 was $168,500. That’s an 83% increase over the price in 2017, which was $92,300, the report said. Montana and Arizona had the next highest prices, both around $160,000.

And, if you thought the cost of traditional,...

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Our thoughts on this story:

Can you spot a problem with the facts in this article:

The average sales price of a new mobile home in Idaho in 2022 was $168,500. That’s an 83% increase over the price in 2017, which was $92,300, the report said. The cost of a new mobile home is cheapest in Kansas, Ohio and Nebraska, where the average sales price in each in 2022 was around $101,000.

Then comes a clue:

Channel said one reason the average price of a mobile home is highest in Idaho is because residents are more willing to pay a premium for “higher-end” multi-section models, like a double-wide or a triple-wide, versus a typical single-wide, than people in other parts of the country. The U.S. Census Bureau’s Manufactured Housing Shipment Survey shows that in 2022 a majority of mobile homes shipped to Idaho were larger, more expensive models.

The bottom line is that many people in Idaho buy large, fancy mobile homes to put on their personal land and NOT into mobile home parks. If you take 50% off all of these prices, then you’re recalibrated back to singlewides that go into mobile home parks.

King 5: Bellingham mobile home park tenants fight to save the land they live on

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BELLINGHAM, Wash. — Preserving low-income housing is growing increasingly difficult in western Washington, as developers gobble up land for pricey high-rises and condos. 

Often it's those who can least afford to relocate who are caught in the crosshairs.

Right now, dozens of Bellingham mobile homeowners are living in limbo -- unsure if their homes will be sold out from under them.

As is the case with most mobile home parks, people at the city's Samish Mobile Home Park own their homes, but they rent the land they live on. 

When it comes time for the owner to sell his property people are often forced to move, but this time there may...

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Our thoughts on this story:

The narrative of park residents buying the parks they live in is reaching new levels of insanity, starting in Washington state apparently:

"Preserving low-income housing is growing increasingly difficult in western Washington, as developers gobble up land for pricey high-rises and condos. Often it's those who can least afford to relocate who are caught in the crosshairs."

Originally the narrative in these articles centered on residents who must be freed from “evil” park owners and now it has morphed into park residents who must be freed from “evil” developers. But here’s the big question: is this really the best use of public funds? If Washington starts to try and buy parks at elevated prices just to preserve them from being torn down for redevelopment that’s going to take money away from many other programs that might benefit a larger number of people, right?

For example, a park in Washington with development potential would probably be priced at $100,000+ per space. So a 50-space park would cost $5 million to buy. Is $5 million best spent helping 50 families live out their life in a dilapidated trailer park or would that money be better spent to build a $5 million library to benefit 100,000 people? 99% of all residents in Washington would probably vote for the library.

Of course, all of these efforts are nothing but virtue signaling. The non-profits want to pretend like they are the champions of the poor (and to them the label of “mobile home park” is perceived by their constituency as “the poor”). At least, that is, until they move on to something more interesting as Palo Alto just did.

People are wrong about America not producing anything anymore. We are the world’s #1 producer of hypocrisy.

Pensacola News Journal: Rent hikes, violence, evictions, mold: much Escambia low-income housing comes at a cost

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Oakstead Mobile Home Park in West Pensacola is one of the only places 80-year-old Paul Buckney can afford to live. The retired chef and U.S. Marine Corps veteran is on a fixed income and owns his trailer.

Up until a couple of years ago he paid $350 a month in rent. Then the mobile home park was sold to a hedge fund and within two years Buckney’s rent went up to $695 a month.

He simply couldn’t afford it, so Buckney and some others kept paying the previous amount.

“Then with the water and sewage, that would have been over $700,” explained Buckney, “which would have taken over three quarters of my income, which doesn't go up and... Read More

Our thoughts on this story:

Making sense of this article is like trying to herd cats. So, let’s break it down into pieces:

ITEM #1: TENANTS HATE HIGHER RENTS.

The mobile home park resident interviewed liked paying $350 more than $700. He lives in Pensacola, Florida. Here’s what Bestplaces.net has to say: SF average $240,000, 2-Bedroom monthly rent of $1,120 per month, 3-Bedroom apartment rent of $1,550 per month. Now this guy certainly knew that he was getting a ridiculous deal at $350 per month all this time in that market and that it was obviously not going to last, and even the new rent of $700 per month is crazy cheap compared to a 3-bedroom apartment (his home looks like 3-bedrooms in the photo). He complains that it costs $10,000 or more to move the home. Why move it? Just sell it if he can no longer afford to live in Pensacola and simply move to a cheaper city. If he moves the home his new rent will be just as high or higher so that concept is pointless. The real story here is that this guy can apparently no longer afford to live in Pensacola, not that the park owner is taking advantage. His lack of ability to afford the going housing prices in Pensacola is shared, I’m sure, by many people including the apartment residents in the city – who are paying on average twice as much as he is even at this new lot rent. If this person is truly retired, why not sell the mobile home and move to a smaller town in Florida with lower housing and living costs?

ITEM #2: SOME APARTMENTS ARE IN BAD REPAIR.

Anybody could tell you that. Have you ever been in a Class B or Class C apartment? They’re awful. But what I don’t get is how this relates to the mobile home park example (which looks great in the photos, by the way). I like how they don’t clearly state in the photo that it’s from the apartment complex and not the mobile home park, so if you don’t read the article, you think the filthy shower relates to the mobile home park (nice deception).

ITEM #3: CRIME IS TERRIBLE IN AMERICA.

Absolutely true. There were 4 car jackings and 3 shootings in a single week in Missouri’s most expensive zip code, Ladue, a couple months ago. But the deterioration of safety in the U.S. is absolutely not the responsibility of any single property owner and the examples cited are unique and not representative of the norm in any way. If you want to blame someone, blame the “defund the police” movement or city halls across America that are more concerned with the rights of criminals than those of victims. In St. Louis, for example, the police are not allowed to chase criminals in any case other than murder or rape if it requires them to exceed the posted speed limit. How is that going to work?

So, when you add up the story it’s just more of the usual nonsense which is clearly not what we used to call “news” but merely manipulation of some random facts knitted together to try to persuade you, in this case, that landlords are evil and tenants are angels. There are two sides to every story and this writer only bothers to acknowledge one of those positions and that’s not fair to readers who want 360-degree visibility of issues so THEY can decide what’s correct, NOT the writer.

Folsom Times: FOLSOM HOME IS IN ONE OF REGION’S TOP RATED MOBILE HOME PARKS

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This Folsom Times showcase property is provided and listed Legends Real Estate of Folsom and is a perfect place for those who may have that New Year’s resolution to downsize from their current home. Located in Folsom’s beautiful 55-plus Pinebook Village, this triple wide mobile home is listed for $269,000.

Listed by Legend’s Real Estate agent Cara Ryan, this home is perfect for empty nesters looking for a low maintenance home in a community packed with social and recreational amenities. The1996 square foot home at 646 Parkstone Drive in Folsom offers. Three bedrooms and two bathrooms, a kitchen with island and it even has a separate bar...

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Our thoughts on this story:

No offense but $269,000 for that thing is absolutely nuts. I urge anyone who thinks this is a great value to go to any city or town in the Midwest before you write that check. There are a million stick-built options at that price point that are larger, nicer, and better located.

KFOR: Midwest City property owner says city won’t work with him

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MIDWEST CITY, Okla. (KFOR) – An out-of-state property owner says he’s at odds with the City of Midwest City over mobile home permits.

Without them, he says he’s losing out on thousands of dollars each month and families that need affordable housing options can’t rely on his community.

Justin Morales, the owner of the Riverside Community on Sable Street, said the mobile home community has been a viable part of the city for decades.

“We’ve brought in over thirty homes in the last couple years and we’ve definitely followed the rules and guidelines,” he said in a prior interview with KFOR.

According to Morales, a recent effort to bring in 10...

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Our thoughts on this story:

Well, the City Attorney certainly sounds reasonable enough … NOT. Check this out – it’s actually insulting:

“Our chief building official went out, found seven of the ten were either wrecked, damaged or dilapidated and should not be within the mobile home park,” he said, saying the repairs would need to be done outside of the physical location of the community, according to the city ordinances. That’s what we have asked for them to do… repair them up to the current federal government requirements and then provide us that certification that they meet those requirements. And if they repaired up to those requirements, then they could be moved back in and be permitted. But until that is done, that was the position of the city,” Maisch said.

So let me get this straight. You can’t renovate a mobile home on-site. And you can’t renovate a mobile home without the government inspecting the work. Well, I know nothing about this case but I’m betting the actual law may 1) allow you to make repairs to a mobile home without having to haul it out to do so and 2) mobile homes do not need to be reinspected by the U.S. government while making normal repairs unless you do things to them that are not allowed under the HUD code (such as add a heavier roof, etc.).

It looks to me that the city is simply trying to harass this park owner into giving up on bringing more residents into this park. I don’t know how else you can read this. They definitely have a motive since each kid that moves in costs the school district $10,000+ per year in tuition while bringing in negligible property tax revenue.

I hope the owner of this park will present these facts to a local attorney who understands property law and explores what his rights truly are. Additionally, he might want to have a discussion with HUD because this case seems uniquely odd and HUD is starting to take action on cases like this one:

  • On January 18, 2022, the court entered a consent order in United States v. City of Arlington (N.D. Tex.).  The complaint, filed on January 13, 2022, alleged that the City of Arlington, Texas violated the Fair Housing Act (FHA) by discriminating on the basis of familial status when it blocked the development of an affordable housing project for families with children that had been proposed by a developer, Community Development, Inc. (CDI), and would have been financed using federal Low-Income Housing Tax Credits (LIHTC).  The complaint alleged that the City refused to issue a Resolution of Support or a Resolution of No Objection to CDI because the City had a policy of supporting LIHTC developments only for new senior housing intended for persons 55 years of age or older.  Under the consent order, the City will pay $395,000 in damages to CDI, maintain a non-discrimination policy for future LIHTC developments, provide Fair Housing Act training to certain city officials, and submit to compliance and reporting requirements for three years.  This case was referred to the Division after the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) received a complaint, conducted an investigation, and issued a charge of discrimination.

Olean Times Herald: More than $1M earmarked for housing affordability, repairs in Allegany County

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BELMONT — Allegany County programs will share in a total of $1.2 million from the state to support affordable homeownership.

Allegany County will receive $600,000 in Community Development Block Grant funding through New York to replace manufactured housing while Belmont Housing Resources for WNY, Inc. will receive $350,000 earmarked for homebuyer down payment assistance through the HOME Program.

In the latter program, funds may be used to acquire and/or rehabilitate single-family housing, provide down payment assistance, replace dilapidated mobile and manufactured homes as well as provide tenant-based rental assistance to households with...

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Our thoughts on this story:

Another smart initiative. Using state funds to fix old mobile homes is a win/win as it preserves home availability in a very low-cost method.

New York State: Governor Hochul Announces Funding to Support Safe and Affordable Homeownership for More Than 1,400 Households

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Governor Kathy Hochul today announced that 1,400 households will benefit from more than $46 million in grant awards to support affordable homeownership. The grants will help low- and moderate-income families make repairs or safety upgrades to their homes, replace manufactured homes, and provide down payment assistance for first-time buyers.

“As housing costs continue to rise, this significant investment will help carve out a path to affordable homeownership for 1,400 New York families,” Governor Hochul said. “My administration is using every tool at our disposal to address the state’s housing crisis, and we will continue to push forward...

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Our thoughts on this story:

Even New York is jumping on the bandwagon of making free repairs to the residents of old mobile homes. This is a seismic shift that will benefit a huge number of people at a low price point.

Robb Report: Prices of Mobile Homes Have Skyrocketed Across the Country

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If you thought the cost of single-family homes surged across the U.S. during the pandemic, that’s nothing compared to the escalating prices in America’s trailer parks.

A new study by LendingTree has found that the prices of manufactured residences, also known as mobile homes, have increased faster than traditional single-family properties, The New York Times reported on Thursday. The report looked at data from the U.S. Census Bureau to pinpoint where the country’s numbers have risen the most and how prices have changed from 2017 to 2022.

In 2017, the average sales price of a manufactured home in the U.S. was $71,900. By 2022, that number...

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Our thoughts on this story:

Ah yes, the power of manipulating data to focus only on percentages and not the actual price points. Sure, new mobile homes have gone up more than new single-family homes by percent – but that’s only because they started from a really low number in the first place. On top of that, the stick-built numbers have been corrupted by the author to include used units, too (since apples to oranges comparison was the only way to make their case).

"In 2017, the average sales price of a manufactured home in the U.S. was $71,900. By 2022, that number had spiked 77 percent to $127,300. At the same time, traditionally built single-family dwellings clocked in at $293,737 but only saw prices rise by 47 percent to $430,800 in that same period"

Look, I can play the same game:

  1. Dollar Tree raised their prices from $1 to $1.25 so they went up 25% while Walmart only went up 10%. What an unscrupulous outfight the dollar store must be! But wait ... that’s wrong.
  2. McDonald’s Value Meal product went from around $1 to $2 so they’re up 100% while Red Lobster only went up 20%. Darn that evil McDonald’s – how abhorrent! Hold on though … I know that’s not true.

The important data is the ACTUAL COST not the percentage of increase. A $127,300 mobile home is a heck of a lot cheaper than a $430,800 single-family home. In fact, if you’re obsessed with percentages, it’s 338% higher. I’m sure the author pushed the percentages to make their case, but only an idiot would come to their hoped-for conclusion.

One final problem with this piece of bad journalism. Used mobile homes sell for $1,000 to maybe $30,000, so if you include used mobile homes in those stats – which is only fair since you’re allowing used homes into the SF stat – then the actual statistically accurate price of the average of new and used mobile homes is more like $70,000 which is an even bigger gap with the SF number. To whoever wrote this article: nice try.

Yahoo! News: $1.25 million grant will help pay for trailer park water main

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Dec. 30—WATERTOWN — The town has arranged for a $1.25 million grant to install a new water main at the trailer park on Route 11 following a water pipe break that caused residents to be without water for more than a week last year.

The town will receive the funding through the state's Community Development Block Grant program, in addition to a previous $5 million grant that will help finance the new water main, said Michael Alteri, chief engineer with BCA Associates.

Alteri gave an update on the $9 million project to the Town Council on Thursday night.

Last year, the Town Council agreed to seek funding to install a new water main for...

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Our thoughts on this story:

This is smart. A city obtains a grant to replace the main water line in a mobile home park. It saves the park, saves the residents, and costs the city nothing. While the media wastes its time promoting resident-owned communities, it could be promoting this simple, effective way to actually help people immediately.

Grist: How mobile home co-ops provide housing security — and climate resilience

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As mobile home owners fight rising housing costs, some of them have hit upon a solution that also helps in the fight against climate change: banding together and buying the land underneath their homes.

This model of collective ownership, also called resident-owned cooperatives or ROCs, is on the rise. In 2000, there were little more than 200. Today, there are more than 15,000, according to a 2022 study from researchers at Berkeley, Cornell, and MIT. 

When residents own the land, they can move more quickly to upgrade infrastructure. That’s where climate change comes in. Renewables — especially solar —  work uniquely well with these types...

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Our thoughts on this story:

2024 has just begun and we already have a serious contender for Dumbest Article of the Year:

IDIOCY #1: “This model of collective ownership, also called resident-owned cooperatives or ROCs, is on the rise. In 2000, there were little more than 200. Today, there are more than 15,000, according to a 2022 study from researchers at the University of California Berkeley, Cornell and MIT.”

There are only 44,000 mobile home parks in the U.S. and ROC acknowledges they have only done around 200 deals since inception, so where did MIT come up with 15,000?? That would be over 30% of all mobile home parks in America, instead of the actual number which remains at around .0045%. That’s a pretty big error that you would imagine anyone with common sense would have spotted when proofing this article.

IDIOCY #2: “When residents own the land, they can move more quickly to upgrade infrastructure. That’s where climate change comes in. Renewables — especially solar — work uniquely well with these types of places, according to Kevin Jones, director at the Institute for Energy and the Environment at the Vermont Law and Graduate School. There’s nothing more perfect than these resident-owned communities because they already have a cooperative structure and, generally, commonly own the piece of land,” said Jones.  “[They] are just kind of natural communities to be able to bring the benefits of solar to more low to moderate-income people.”

This may come as a shock to a young journalist, but mobile home park residents have absolutely no money to fund infrastructure improvements in an ROC format, and certainly solar energy would NEVER be on that list if they could (fixing potholes is challenging enough when you have no deep-pocket owner to make those repairs).

Perhaps this writer went to the Marie Antoinette School of Journalism because something is definitely missing in their sense of reality. Perhaps the residents should eat cake while enjoying their new solar panels?

The Miamy County Republic: RVs will be allowed on two lots at Paola Mobile Home Park

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PAOLA – Recreational vehicles (RVs) will be allowed on two lots at the Paola Mobile Home Park thanks to a conditional-use permit (CUP) approved by the Paola City Council.

Council members reviewed the issue during their Dec. 12 meeting.

City Planner Jessica Newton said that, over time, the Paola Mobile Home Park at 716 S. Gold St. has brought in RVs to serve as long-term rental options for residents. Park owners have previously been notified by city staff that the legal option for the park to utilize RVs would be to apply for a CUP to operate as a “campground” as defined in the city’s Land Development Ordinance (LDO).

Park owner...

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Our thoughts on this story:

It’s interesting that there are two articles on the same topic this week. It’s a fact that RVs are becoming a desirable retirement housing option for many seniors and it makes a lot of sense that they are. Many Baby Boomers already own RVs, so it’s a simple transition to sell their house and move into the RV that they already own and enjoy and there’s none of the “trailer trash” stigma when you live in an RV, which has very high status ratings with their peers.

Of course, this article also brings forth the same question as the earlier one: do cities really have the right to restrict RVs in mobile home parks, since when the original permits were issued, they were all just “trailers”? If the city had not voted to allow the two RVs then the issue might have been litigated and the weakness in the city’s argument would have been exposed. Fortunately, the city saw the light here.

Sky-Hi News: What’s considered a mobile home park in Colorado? Even judges can’t agree.

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Over the past year, two lawsuits in Colorado sought to clarify the difference between mobile home parks and seasonal RV campgrounds that cater to out-of-state tourists.

The difference involves more than semantics: If a park falls under the state’s Mobile Home Park Act, owners are obligated to fulfill a litany of additional regulations, from tree and snow removal to rent-increase restrictions. RV parks have far fewer rules.

But as park owners and residents seek a better understanding of where their communities may fall, even judges can’t seem to agree.

This month, however, a Denver District Court judge issued a completely different ruling...

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Our thoughts on this story:

This is an issue that has been on my radar screen for nearly 30 years, stemming from my first acquisition called Glenhaven Mobile Home and RV Park. In many cities they claim that you can’t put RVs on mobile home park lots or mobile homes on RV park lots. But the problem is that RVs and mobile homes were the exact same thing when most of these parks were built (hence the words “trailer park”) and therefore the actual grandfathered permits have no such restrictions. Typically, the owners of the park just does what the city says  on this topic because it’s not that big a deal because they have few RVs or few mobile homes, but if Colorado wants to put a microscope on the issue they may soon find they’ve opened a Pandora’s Box as the park owners have been in the right all along and now the courts are going to prove it. Even now – with two conflicting rulings – Colorado is in a mess as there’s no clear case law on RV parks vs. mobile home parks (as long as they were built before the actual definition of mobile home came into play by HUD in 1976). This is one of those issues where both sides should just try to get along without looking to a court to give them a black and white answer on an obviously grey matter.

fresnoland: Millions available for Fresno mobile home parks after city rejects affordable housing project

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Funds will soon be made available for those seeking to safeguard some of the city’s last remaining affordable housing stock – Fresno mobile homes.

The Fresno City Council unanimously approved a resolution allowing the city to initiate a Notice of Funding Availability “for the acquisition, improvement, and preservation of affordable housing in mobile home parks within the City of Fresno” during their Dec. 14 meeting.

The resolution was sponsored by Councilmembers Miguel Arias and Garry Bredefeld. Arias said the NOFA decision illustrates the city’s shift in attitude toward mobile home parks.

“It wasn’t until two years ago that the city of...

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Our thoughts on this story:

The city of Fresno, California is finally getting wise to how to keep mobile home parks from being torn down and redeveloped:

“We are now connecting mobile home parks to water and sewer systems to make sure that they have a sustainable water source and have a necessary sewage infrastructure,” Arias continued. “We are taking responsibility to inspect and monitor all mobile home parks within the city’s boundaries, and now we’re actually funding the renovation and preservation of mobile home parks.”

More cities should adopt this attitude.

The Islander Classifieds: Pines residents facing rent hikes in 2024, some opt to sell

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Members of the tight-knit Pines Trailer Park community are facing hardship after developer Shawn Kaleta, owner of Pines Park Investors LLC, announced rent increases in the new year for homeowners.

The mobile home park, 103 Church Ave., Bradenton Beach, was purchased by Pines Park Investors LLC. Sept. 12 from longtime owners Jackson Partnership for $16,250,000.

The acquisition included park-owned land, buildings, mobile homes, vehicles, equipment and materials.

Residents who expressed concern that the park would be demolished and redeveloped rejoiced with a notice from the new ownership stating that the trailer park would remain.

Then, 17...

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Our thoughts on this story:

I love how the residents hired an “expert” to say that the lot rents should only be $850 per month. Well, maybe the “expert” doesn’t own a computer because a quick search of Bestplaces.net shows that Bradenton Beach has the following real estate prices:

Single Family Home: $775,100

2 Bedroom Apartment Rent: $1,620 per month

3 Bedroom Apartment Rent: $2,150 per month

The bottom line is that a lot rent over $1,000 per month is perfectly reasonable in this market and you can go hire 100 “experts” to tell the owner that $75 per month is right but nobody is going to buy that argument.

Sure, tenants were getting a ridiculous deal from mom and pop for decades. That has nothing to do with the actual value and new owners are not going to be compelled to keep lot rents ridiculously low like their predecessors did. Sorry, but it’s just not going to happen.

Palo Alto Online: With funding boost, plans advance for redevelopment of Buena Vista Mobile Home Park

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For the second time in the past decade, the Buena Vista Mobile Home Park is facing the prospect of demolition.

This time, however, the city and the community are embracing — rather than fighting — the redevelopment of Palo Alto's only mobile-home park.

The Santa Clara County Housing Authority, which purchased the park at 3980 El Camino Real in 2017, submitted this week plans to redevelop the park and turn it into Buena Vista Village. According to the newly submitted plans, the rebuilt park would include an apartment building with 61 units, ranging from junior 1-bedroom apartments to 3-bedroom ones. It would also replace existing mobile...

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Our thoughts on this story:

Read this carefully and see if you remember this park from 2017:

The Santa Clara County Housing Authority, which purchased the park at 3980 El Camino Real in 2017, submitted this week plans to redevelop the park and turn it into Buena Vista Village. According to the newly submitted plans, the rebuilt park would include an apartment building with 61 units, ranging from junior 1-bedroom apartments to 3-bedroom ones. It would also replace existing mobile homes and RVs, many of which fail to comply with local codes, with 44 new coaches of various types.

The goal of retaining residents marks the project as very different from the prior redevelopment proposal, which would have replaced Buena Vista with a high-end condominium development. That plan, which was pitched by the Jisser family in 2013, ran into massive community opposition and ultimately prompted the city and Santa Clara County to facilitate the Housing Authority's purchase of the Barron Park property.

This time, the project is expected to encounter little resistance. Earlier this year, Housing Authority CEO Preston Prince emphasized in a presentation to the City Council that in pursuing the redevelopment, it is "inspired by the values of equity, preservation and anti-displacement."

In the near term, however, the 260 current residents will have to decide what to do during the construction period and determine whether they want to return to the new Buena Vista Village once the project is complete. In response to an inquiry from this publication, the Housing Authority noted that residents are still living in the park and will continue to do so until the renovation starts.

I hope that all the cities and states that are hyped up on the residents buying their own communities sees this as a wake-up call that maybe the concept does not work as planned.

If you recall back in 2017 the media and the residents very publicly blasted the owner of the park who was going to redevelop it into high-end condominiums. They blocked and litigated him at every turn and eventually forced him to sell the park to the city for the perceived and widely promoted benefit of the residents (do you remember when they even pitched Steve Jobs’ wife to buy it and donate it?). Well, that was only 5 years ago and now Palo Alto is giving up on the concept and going to tear the park down themselves and do exactly what the prior owner was going to do only with the spin that maybe the residents can move back in some day – yeah, right.

If they had simply given the residents that park money back in 2017 – of which I publicly wrote articles on back then – those folks could have pocketed about $400,000 each and bought a nice brick house in an exurban California market with lower home prices. Instead, they are now the proud owners of … homelessness. Ronald Reagan once said that the nine scariest words in the English language are “I’m from the government and I’m here to help” – and he nailed this one.

Kitsap Sun: Year in review: After community responds, threat of evictions in Poulsbo subsides

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Editor's note: As 2023 winds to a close, the Sun is checking in on a few stories reported earlier in the year, as an update on the people involved. Today, we catch up with residents in the Poulsbo Mobile Home Park, where letters demanding upgrades on homes and rumors of eviction swirled last spring before a community response.

POULSBO -- At one point, Robert Carlyle could see the stars through a hole in the roof of his mobile home. He’s lived in the Poulsbo Mobile Home Park since 1990 and has received some help repairing glaring issues over the years. But when he received a notice last spring that his dilapidated home would have to meet...

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Our thoughts on this story:

I’m glad this had potentially a happy ending, but what I take issue with is that the concept of forcing tenants to bring property up to minimum standards is now taken by the media as an unfair request.

The inspections and subsequent notices of violation “are not intended to be an avenue for evictions and that is not our goal when we issue them,” Shah said to deFaria in an email. “Just like how an HOA operates, we expect residents to comply to the rules and regulations… to address safety hazards that are common with older homes and to improve the quality of homes and lots so that the community remains a high quality, safe, and clean place to live.”

The win/win here is that the owner got the property fixes done with volunteer labor. But the requests were never wrong and should not have been portrayed by the media in that manner. 

wbur: As investors lurked, mobile home residents in western Mass. bought their park

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A group of mobile home residents in western Massachusetts will ring in the new year with a renewed sense of place, after they banded together to purchase their park before outside investors could take over.

Bissellville Estates, a park in Hinsdale with 29 mobile homes, sold for $600,000. Residents borrowed an additional $180,000 to make improvements like cleaning up oil contamination and fixing electrical equipment.

Gary Bird, a resident leader who has lived at the park for 15 years, said he and his neighbors feel a sense of relief.

“So now that we're in control of the situation," he said, "it just feels good to know that there's none of...

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Our thoughts on this story:

No offense to the bureaucrats but when you can buy a 29-space park in Massachusetts for $600,000 ($20,000 per space) you know it has some significant cap-x problems in store for the new owner.  I hope they have a plan to pay for those, (and I bet they don’t). I assume the bureaucrats did zero due diligence and are about to find out the hard way how infrastructure and 1001 real-life things work when they have no money to pay for them.