Mobile Home Owner News – Jan 2020
Resident curated mobile home owners news and information for residents of Mobile Home Parks owned by Kort & Scott (KS) companies. The MHPHOA also provides news coverage for Mobile Home Parks not owned by KS companies.
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MHCs – Troubling Trend of Rent Increases and Resident Displacement
RE: Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac
Thu, Jan 23, 2020 – On Fri, Jan 10, 2020, US Senator Sherrod Brown (D) from Ohio, Ranking Member of the Senate Banking Committee, submitted the following letters to the CEOs of the Federal National Mortgage Association (Fannie Mae) and the Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corporation (Freddie Mac). The letters are identical with the names Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac interchanged, they open with…
I am writing regarding the increase in private equity investment in and ownership of manufactured housing communities (MHC) and a troubling trend of rent increases and resident displacement in many of these communities. I have seen first-hand how residents in these communities, many of whom are elderly and have fixed incomes, have experienced rent and other housing cost increases with few consumer protections. The information I am requesting here will help me better understand Fannie Mae’s role in financing private equity-owned MHC properties and what resident protections, if any, are included in the Enterprise’s financing process.
For homeowners residing in an MHC, housing costs come in two parts – the home loan and the lot rent. If either of these components of housing cost become overly burdensome, homeownership may no longer be affordable for an MHC resident. Over the past several months I have seen reports and heard directly from residents of MHCs in Ohio and throughout the country who have seen lot rent increases, coupled with new fees and other charges, that are unsustainable for existing residents. Many news reports of rent increases have come shortly after the MHC was purchased by a private equity fund that subsequently raised rents. Given the number of these news reports and private equity’s destructive track record, I am increasingly concerned that investment in communities without regard for the needs of existing tenants could result in displacement and fewer, not more, affordable housing opportunities.
As stated above, there is little data on MHCs. There is even less data available on private equity’s involvement in all segments of the American economy, including MHCs. While the Enterprises are just one of many outlets for financing MHC purchases, I would like to better understand the role that private equity has played over the last several years in MHC ownership from the Enterprises’ perspective. I would also like to understand what steps Fannie Mae is taking to ensure that residents of the communities it finances are not forced out by irresponsible rent increases.
Senator Sherrod Brown Letters
Date: Fri, Jan 10, 2020, Pages: 8
Related: Duty to Serve Webinar
Date: Thu, Feb 9, 2017, Pages: 41
Related: MHAction Report
Private Equity Giants Converge on MH
Date: Thu, Feb 14, 2019
Related: Mobile Homes
Last Week Tonight with John Oliver (HBO)
Date: Sun, Apr 7, 2019
Wed, Jan 22, 2020 – The MHPHOA online version of the 2020 California Mobilehome Residency Law in HTML has been updated to reflect all changes indicated below.
From the Senate Select Committee on Manufactured Home Communities:
Division 2, Part 2, Chap. 2.5 of the Civil Code. The Mobilehome Residency Law (MRL) is the “landlord-tenant law” for mobilehome parks, which, like landlord-tenant law and other Civil Code provisions, are enforced in a court of law. The Department of Housing and Community Development (HCD) does not have authority to enforce violations of the MRL.
Senate Select Committee on Manufactured Home Communities
- File Type: PDF
- Pages: 137
- Size: 3.9MB
From the 2020 MRL Introduction:
For the 2020 edition, SB 274 (Dodd) amended the companion law (CIV 798.34) to designate one companion at a time, not exceeding three companions per calendar year. The bill also requires a park manager to renew tenancy to those affected by a wildfire or natural disaster (CIV 798.62). Lastly, this bill amended (CIV 798.74) to clarify the park manager’s role in prior approval of a mobilehome purchase. Legislation signed by the governor not affecting the MRL but that is significant to those living in mobilehomes: SB 508 (Leyva) require that all mobilehome owners receive a copy of their insurance disclosure forms and Bill of Rights.
RE: The Oaks LLC, St. Clair Property Management, Gregg Kirkpatrick
Thu, Jan 16, 2020 –
Cooper and other residents are fighting a $220-per-month rent increase the city approved in November. The average rent at the park is $470, with about 30 of 84 renters paying around $399 per month.
Under a Santa Paula ordinance, annual rent increases for mobile home spaces are limited to increases in the Consumer Price Index, and they cannot exceed 7% of existing rent.
However, park owners can apply for a rent increase to cover the cost of a completed capital improvement project. This is what Gregg Kirkpatrick, owner of the Oaks Mobile Estates, did after spending more than $2 million to upgrade and replace the property’s utility system and clubhouse.
The park ownership is offering residents two options to pay for the increase.
The first option would involve a $220.98-per-month increase implemented incrementally over the next five years. Residents who choose this option would see a $25 increase in 2020, a $59 increase in 2021 and a $66 increase in 2022.
Alternatively, residents can enter a 25-year lease with the owner, which would involve a $25-per-month increase in 2020 and 5% annual increases every year after that for the remainder of the lease.
Note: The long-term lease is a tool used by park owners to remove homeowners from rent control protections.
RE: MHC Operating LP (ELS), Nicholson Family Partnership LLC
Thu, Jan 9, 2020 –
Westwinds Mobile Home Park resident Rob Leeper was astonished when he found a letter taped to his home Friday, informing him his family could be out of a place to live by the fall of 2022.
We were like what the heck? You know how much it costs to move one of these things? Leeper said of his 1,800-square-feet, 3-bedroom, 2-bath home. We would like to stay here if we could. We are a small village in a huge city.
Westwinds, located at 500 Nicholson Lane in North San Jose, hosts more than 700 mobile homes. The notices came from the management company, MHC Operating, which sued the property owner, Nicholson Family Partnership, early last week, stating they have no obligation to remove any of Westwinds residents before or upon the expiration of its lease.
Now, San Jose lawmakers have stepped in to try and assuage the roughly 1,600 mobile home park residents’ concerns. Mayor Sam Liccardo and Councilmember Lan Diep, whose district includes the park, held a news conference Thursday morning to announce a plan to expedite a land use designation that would protect the park and others like it.
The designation would mean a mobile home park owner cannot change what goes on that land without a general plan amendment, which is more difficult to obtain and requires approval from city officials. The designation would need to go through the planning commission, housing commission and City Council.
RE: Havenpark Capital Partners, Impact Communities
Wed, Jan 8, 2020 –
Two of Iowa’s Democratic U.S. representatives took steps Tuesday to address what they say are dramatic rent hikes reported at several Iowa mobile home parks purchased by out-of-state companies.
Rep. Cindy Axne, a Democrat who represents Iowa’s 3rd District, introduced a bill Tuesday to provide federal grants to local groups seeking to purchase and maintain mobile home communities.
Iowa 1st District Rep. Abby Finkenauer, also a Democrat, called for a Federal Trade Commission investigation into the practices of the out-of-state companies purchasing mobile home parks and increasing rents around the country.
Axne’s bill and Finkenauer’s letter come after Havenpark Capital Partners, an investment firm from Orem, Utah, purchased several mobile home parks in Iowa and began increasing rents by as much as 69%. Finkenauer’s letter notes media reports that another out-of-state company, Impact Communities, raised rents by 60% over the past two years at a mobile home park in Dubuque.
Also on Tuesday, Finkenauer sent a letter to Federal Trade Commission chairman Joseph Simons calling for an investigation into the reports of out-of-state investment companies buying mobile home parks and hiking rents.
Finkenauer referred to some of Havenpark’s recent purchases in the letter, as well as media reports that Impact Communities, a large mobile home park chain, has raised rent 60% over the past two years at Table Mound Mobile Home Parks in Dubuque.
Tue, Jan 7, 2020 – WASHINGTON, DC –
Today, Congresswoman Abby Finkenauer (IA-01) sent a letter to Federal Trade Commission (FTC) Chairman Joseph Simons calling for an investigation into the predatory and unfair business practices occurring at Table Mound Mobile Home Park and other mobile and manufactured home parks in Iowa.
In recent months, media reports have documented how out-of-state investment companies are purchasing mobile and manufactured home parks, then drastically increasing rent and fees on residents, and pressuring them to sign one-sided lease agreements. As it can cost up to $5,000 to relocate a manufactured home, some residents have no choice but to pay the rising costs or risk losing their homes altogether. This makes residents – many of whom are living on fixed incomes – especially vulnerable.
I am incredibly concerned that hardworking Iowans are being taken advantage of by out-of-state companies looking to make a quick and easy buck,” Congresswoman Finkenauer said. “Mobile and manufactured home park residents in our district are fighting back and I will continue standing with them because these stories are heartbreaking. I also want these so-called investors, looking to get rich off exploiting Iowans, to know this treatment of people in our state will not stand. I believe these companies are bad actors and that they need to be investigated.
Congresswoman Abby Finkenauer Letter
Date: Tue, Jan 7, 2020, Pages: 2
Sun, May 5, 2019 –
Though Havenpark Capital is just three years old, it has racked up complaints related to its business practices with consumer protection officials and housing advocates in several states, Watchdog found.
Investor Firm that Hiked Lot Rents at Iowa MHPs is Subject of Complaints in Other States
Department of Housing and Community Development – MHP Inspections
Mon, Jan 6, 2020 – On Wed, Jun 26, 2019, the Joint Legislative Audit Committee (JLAC) approved an audit request by Senator Connie M. Leyva (D-Chino) to review the efficacy and ongoing issues related to the California Department of Housing and Community Development’s (HCD) Mobilehome Inspection Program. According to the California State Auditor, the results of that JLAC Approved Audit will become available in May 2020.
2019-111 – Department of Housing and Community Development – Mobilehome Park Inspections
Est. Release Date: May 2020 » Audit Scope (PDF)
Wed, Jun 26, 2019 –
SACRAMENTO – Earlier today, the Joint Legislative Audit Committee (JLAC) approved an audit request by Senator Connie M. Leyva (D-Chino) to review the efficacy and ongoing issues related to the California Department of Housing and Community Development’s (HCD) Mobilehome Inspection Program.
As the Chair of the Senate Select Committee on Manufactured Home Communities, Senator Leyva continues to hear from mobilehome residents and owners about the insufficient oversight and follow-up by HCD that allows some mobilehome parks to fall into severe disrepair, as well as risk the public health and eventually the housing options of their residents. In recent years, HCD has identified inadequate gas meters, accumulation of combustible materials and exposed live electrical parts at mobilehome parks. Media reports also identified a mobilehome park in Northern California with poor infrastructure that was without power for several days during an extreme heat wave in 2018 that endangered the health and safety of elderly residents.
While I appreciate the important work that HCD does to protect the health and safety of mobilehome parks and their residents, there is clearly still much work to do to meet the needs of mobilehome residents across our state,” Senator Leyva said. “Mobilehomes provide a critical option for affordable housing in California, so it is important that we do all that we can to make sure that the state is inspecting mobilehome parks fully and properly so that we can keep residents healthy and safe. There is no excuse for mobilehome residents to ever have to live with exposed electrical parts or without power for days because of poor infrastructure so, depending on the results of the audit, we will likely need to find a way for the state to have better and likely more frequent oversight of these parks. I thank my JLAC colleagues for approving this important audit that will ultimately help to improve living conditions at mobilehome parks and the quality of life and safety of their residents.
The independent audit will include an assessment of HCD’s statewide mobilehome park inspection process and efforts, as well as review and evaluate follow-up visits made to parks by inspectors to ensure compliance. With nearly 5,000 mobilehome parks and 2 million mobilehome residents in California, the Mobilehome Park Maintenance (MPM) Inspection Program is crucial in maintaining the quality of life for these residents.
The California State Auditor will conduct the audit over the next several months and issue a public report once the analysis is completed.
Sun, Jan 5, 2020 – On Wed, Sep 26, 2018, Governor Brown signed Assembly Bill 3066 which gives California Mobile Home Owners a way to enforce the Mobilehome Residency Law and stop egregious abuses by predatory park owners.
AB 3066, authored by Assemblyman Mark Stone, was a re-introduction of AB 1269 from last year, which was vetoed by Governor Brown. AB 3066 was introduced in June of 2018 reviving the efforts started by AB 1269 and GSMOL Members throughout the state. The continued and relentless response by GSMOL Members and their urgent call-to-action caused AB 3066 to pass through the State Assembly and Senate and earn a signature by the Governor. Now that AB 3066 is a law, it should be called The Mobilehome Residency Protection Program or MRLPP, which is congruent with the name used by HCD.
Key Provisions of AB 3066:
6. In order to fund this new authority and these duties, HCD will assess a $10 annual maintenance fee on park owners who will be allowed to pass this fee on to residents (i.e. less than 84¢ a month). This will NOT be part of your space rent and will be a clearly defined line item. Most of us agree that 84¢ a month is cheap insurance to pay for the protection (and which we hope we will never need!)
Assembly Bill 3066, Mark Stone – Signed by Governor Brown
Mobilehome Residency Law Protection Act
Mon, Oct 1, 2018 –
Congratulations are in order! We (GSMOL) are happy to announce that as of Wed, Sep 26, 2018, Governor Jerry Brown signed AB 3066 – The Mobilehome Residency Law Protection Act into law.
AB 3066 was advocated for and sponsored by GSMOL and its members throughout California. Without support from you, our members, this wouldn’t have happened. So THANK YOU for all of your hard work on spreading the news and calling your legislators.
Legislative Counsel’s Digest
This bill would enact the Mobilehome Residency Law Protection Act. Beginning July 1, 2020, the bill would establish the Mobilehome Residency Law Protection Program within the Department of Housing and Community Development, pursuant to which the bill would require the department to provide assistance in resolving and coordinating the resolution of complaints from homeowners relating to the Mobilehome Residency Law, as provided. The bill would require the department to refer matters within its jurisdiction to its Division of Codes and Standards and authorize it to refer matters not within its jurisdiction to the appropriate enforcement agency. The bill would require the department to select complaints for evaluation under the program, as provided. The bill would require the department to contract with one or more qualified and experienced nonprofit legal services providers and, if a complaint submitted to the program is not resolved during a 25-day period for negotiation between management and the complaining party, the bill would require the referral of complaints selected for evaluation to an appropriate enforcement agency or one of those nonprofit legal services providers, as provided. The bill would require management to provide specified information to the department within 15 business days from the postmark date or electronic transmission of a request for that information and require the imposition of a noncompliance citation of $250 for each failure to comply.
Beginning January 1, 2019, the bill would require the department to assess upon, and collect from, the management of a mobilehome park subject to the Mobilehome Residency Law an annual registration fee of $10 for each permitted mobilehome lot located within the mobilehome park, to be paid at the time of payment of the annual operating fee imposed under the Mobilehome Parks Act. The bill would authorize management to pass this fee on to the homeowners within the mobilehome park. The bill would require that all moneys collected pursuant to its provisions be deposited into the Mobilehome Dispute Resolution Fund, which this bill would establish, and make those moneys available, upon appropriation by the Legislature, for purposes of implementing the Mobilehome Residency Law Protection Act, as provided.
AB 3066 Mobilehome Residency Law Protection Act
Sat, Jan 4, 2020 – This table of Investors, Park Owners and/or Park Management Companies is a work in progress as of Sat, Jan 4, 2020. The number of Sites data may not be accurate and is rounded up to the nearest quarter (25, 50, 75, 00). The MHPHOA are performing ongoing research in this area to see if we can accurately account for the total number of Sites for each entity listed. Address and Website information are accurate based on recent audits performed for data verification against publicly available records.
RE: Star Management
Fri, Jan 3, 2020 –
Even though mobile homes remain the largest form of affordable housing in California, a state of California/Stanford University report said that because mobile home park property is worth five to six times more if it is instead used for high density development, the homesteads long known as trailer parks are “vanishing.” There have been no new mobile home parks built in California since the 1980s.
Oceanside is thought to be a haven for mobile home park ownership because of a 1982 rent-control ordinance. Yet some warn the future is looking bleak for some of Oceanside’s 2,500 mobile home tenants.
For decades there were 17 Oceanside mobile home parks, most built in the 60s or 70s. But in 2017 the owner of the 21-space La Playa Vista park flat out ignored the city’s ordinance that mandated a mobile home park owner advise the city and then get approval of its closure. Condos are being planned for the La Playa property on Tremont Street west of Coast Highway. There are now 16 Oceanside mobile home parks. And by the end of the year there may be 15.
Bob Richards was a jet fighter in Vietnam who lives in the 433-space Rancho San Luis Rey Mobile Home Park. He says that when he tried to sell his home the sale was thwarted because park management harassed him by demanding, among other things, that he tear down the six-foot wall surrounding his home even though there are other six-foot-high walls in his park and Oceanside city codes specifically say fences up to six feet tall are legal.
‘I had a buyer from Palm Springs who was approved’, says Richards. ‘They came after me’, he says of Star Management which runs Rancho San Luis Rey. He says Star would not relent on its demands to tear down the fence which halted the sale. ‘They are completely predatory. They don’t want it to look like too many people are leaving because it will look bad to their investors. My buyer decided to walk away because he saw what [Star Management] did to me’.
Walshaw says some of the parks are buying up the homes within the park, allowing the owner to collect market rate rent ($2,000 to $2,500) versus rent-controlled space rent which is usually around $500. That, plus the effort to convince mobile home owners to sign away their rent control with new leases, has drastically taken down the amount of Oceanside residents still on rent control.
Thu, Jan 2, 2020 – According to data obtained from the California Department of Housing and Community Development (HCD), there are 5,251 Active Mobile Home and RV Parks totaling 452,721 lots/spaces in the State of California. Of those 452,721 lots/spaces, 363,931 are mobile home spaces, 66,474 are RV lots with drains and 22,316 are RV lots without drains.
There are 692 Closed Mobile Home and RV Parks totaling 21,164 lots/spaces. Of those 21,164 lots/spaces, 11,370 are mobile home spaces, 6,931 are RV lots with drains and 2,863 are RV lots without drains.
As of Thu, Jan 2, 2020, the HCD has data for a total of 5,943 Mobile Home and RV Parks totaling 473,885 lots/spaces which includes Active and Closed listings. Of those 473,885 lots/spaces, 375,301 are mobile home spaces, 73,405 are RV lots with drains and 25,179 RV lots without drains.
HCD Note: HCD has enforcement of 81.4 percent of the parks and 75.5 percent of the lots in the State of California. The overall average park size is 86 lots; 80 for Mobile Home Parks, and 88 for RV Parks.
According to data obtained from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (HIFLD) and as of Thu, Feb 14, 2019, there are 45,642 Mobile Home and RV Parks in the U.S.
The below Top 10 Largest Mobile Home and RV Park listings in California are based on the HCD Mobile Home and RV Parks Active Listings as of Thu, Jan 2, 2020.
Wed, Jan 1, 2020 – A summarized ordered list view by most recent date of Mobile Home Owner News for the 2019 year with duplicates merged and non-relevant topics removed. You can press
Ctrl+F on your keyboard to bring up the Find/Search dialog and enter the search term to find on this page.
Wed, Jan 1, 2020 – Historical Assembly Bill (AB) NOT Passed –
Thu, Feb 18, 2016 – AB-2351 Mobilehome parks: rent control. Introduced by Assembly Member Roger Hernández – An act to repeal Section 798.17 of the Civil Code, relating to mobilehome parks.
The Mobilehome Residency Law governs the terms and conditions of residency in mobilehome parks, and exempts a rental agreement that satisfies specified criteria, including that it be in excess of 12-months’ duration, from any ordinance, rule, regulation, or initiative measure adopted by a local governmental entity that establishes a maximum amount a landlord may charge a tenant for rent.
This bill would repeal these provisions. The bill would make a statement of legislative findings.
Stop Predatory Park Owners
MHP News Resources
Kort & Scott Pay $57,000,000
Largest Mobile Home Park Settlement Ever
Fri, Nov 22, 2019 –
Kabateck LLP attorneys representing hundreds of low-income mobile home residents in Long Beach, California secured a nearly $57 million settlement, which is the largest settlement ever involving a mobile home park.
MRL Protection Program
Sometimes, in mobilehome parks, disputes can arise between mobilehome/manufactured homeowners and park management. To help resolve some of these disputes, California created the Mobilehome Residency Law Protection Program (MRLPP) through the Mobilehome Residency Law Protection Act of 2018, Assembly Bill 3066 (Chapter 774, Statutes of 2018).
Must be a mobilehome / manufactured homeowner residing in a permitted mobilehome park.
What Types of Complaints can be Submitted for Consideration?
Complaints for issues within mobilehome parks related to Mobilehome Residency Law violations (California Civil Code). Common violations include illegal grounds for eviction, failure to provide proper notice of rent increases, or no written rental agreement between the park and mobilehome owner.
How do I submit my complaint?
Complaints must be submitted to HCD. HCD provides assistance to help resolve and coordinate resolution of the most severe alleged violations of the Mobilehome Residency Law. Visit the How to Submit a Complaint page for details on ways to submit your complaint to HCD.