This will be part one of a series on what to expect from your manager for a Mobile Home Park.
Priority one for any landlord is rent collections. This needs to be done starting on the first of the month and completed by the fifth of each month. All rents received need to be deposited daily, unless a weekend or holiday. For those residents who request a rent receipt â€“ a receipt will be provided. You must have a policy of no cash â€“ only checks, bank checks or money orders to be accepted. Your Manager must never accept cash. All rents received need to be logged on the monthly rent collection record. For those that insist on paying late then there will be the additional duty to collect late rents and all appropriate fees.
Some Owners try to eliminate late fees by using a graduated lot rent lease. If rent is paid on or before the first then the regular rent is due. If rent is paid on the second to the fifth then an extra $15 is added. Rent received from the sixth to the tenth needs and extra $30 to be added. Rents paid from the eleventh to the twentieth need an extra $45. For rent received after the twentieth then add $60 to the rent due. The graduated lot rent lease allows the residents to pay the rent on any day of the month and depending on what day of the month the rent gets paid a different rent amount is due. When you have to go to court â€“ many magistrates do not like to allow late charges. With this type of lease then it is not late charges you are asking for â€“ you are asking for the rent due for paying on that day of the month. If this rent is contested check your Stateâ€™s position on rent control. Most state that no City, State or Local government agency will engage in any type of rent control.
The Manager must pass out late notices or any other legal notices as requested by Owner. Any time there is a scheduled rent increase, the Manager needs to ensure all residents receive a copy. It would probably be a good idea to have the resident sign a log that they received the notice on such and such date. If there are water or electrical meters that need to be read for submetering purposes, this needs to be completed and entered into a billing form to the residents. The billing sheets would then need to be passed out to each unit.
During the course of the month certain bills need to be paid â€“ you may pay some by bill pay and others may be paid by the Manager using a bank check from your business account. At the end of the month the completed income and expense report needs to be provided to the Owner. This will then be entered into a computer database to be used for placing on the Schedule E at tax time.
Besides the monthly income & expenses report there are other monthly reports due to the Owner. First would be the monthly vacancy report. Any vacant homes or lots need to be on this report. With mobile home parks, resident turnover is a bare minimum when compared to other sectors of real estate rentals. This report may not change much from month to month so may be changed to a quarterly or semi-annual report to the Owner. Second would be any new Federal or State Laws that have been enacted that may affect the operation of the mobile home park. Some examples would be rent control, changes to the Mobile Home Park Landlord-Tenant Act, Tenants first right of refusal to buy the Mobile Home Park when up for sale or the Assessor changing the way the property is assessed for tax purposes. All Managers need to keep up with all of these changes to ensure compliance. Finally, if the Owner has a petty cash fund set up to pay for low cost items, this needs to be accounted for and all expenditures replaced so the balance is always the same at the start of each month. Perhaps $100 could be available in this fund or checking account available for the Manager to use directly.
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