Mobile Homes

4 Strategies for a Best-Case-Scenario Mobile Home Park Takeover

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Caravan site park aerial view illuminated by summer sun

Things have changed a little in the mobile home park investing space in the last few years, with cap rates lowering and consequently driving up purchase price and lowering spread. There are also more mobile home park buyers, which means more competition.

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Many of the new buyers are such novices that they don’t fully get how to evaluate a mobile home park properly. As such, we are seeing a lot of buyers paying outrageous prices. I don’t want that to be you.

If you don’t buy right, then your deal may not work out in the long run. You can compensate for a few errors if things go wrong, but you lose your wiggle room if you paid too much. In that case, you may have put in a bunch of hard work only to break even—or worse, lose money—for you and your investors.

Here are a few ways you can make sure that your mobile home park takeover works out.

1. Maximize Profits With an Effective Business Plan

So, cap rates have compressed. Competition is higher than ever. How do you maximize profits given these circumstances?

Remember “forced appreciation” from my previous article on BiggerPockets? Well, that’s where we can really add some value to our parks.

If your park is 100% occupied, tenants are paying utilities, and you’re already at market rents, then there is not much else you can do but increase rents annually, decrease expenses, and hope for cap rates to drop over time. Alternatively, if there are vacant lots, spaces to add on extra lots, vacant homes, utilities that the park currently pays, lower-than-market lot rents, or higher-than-needed expenses, then there’s tons of room to increase profits.

In the mobile home park (MHP) space, we call this “value-add.” Therefore, the best and easiest way to maximize profits is to increase the amount of value that can be added to this park during your ownership. You may technically be able to do everything at once, but you are better off increasing value steadily over time. Not only does it not work out logistically, but it’s also unethical to raise tenants’ expenses too quickly or in too large of a chunk.

When taking over a park, immediately eliminate unnecessary expenses, as this will drive up your NOI. Next, take a close look at rents. If there is significant room to raise rents, it’s more likely the previous owner was in some kind of time bubble and for one reason or another either forgot to, chose not to, or was scared to raise rents. In this case, most tenants don’t realize that they were paying under-market rents for whatever the time period was.

As a new owner, you will need to raise rents to what they should have been. But if you're way under market, it may take a few years to catch up. Of course, tenants never like having rents raised or utilities billed back, but it's the nature of the economy to keep up with inflation. It's not just the tenant's expenses that are increasing, it's the expenses of the nation, as we are all affected by inflation. So, we need to raise rents each year to keep with the times.

In addition, over time, bill back any utilities that the park is paying so tenants ultimately pay 100% of utility costs. That might take a few years, and you may need to wait until rents have been raised to market before you can effectively do that. Alternatively, you can bill back utilities earlier and raise rents later.

For example, if you raise rents by $30 and bill back an extra $35 in utilities on day one, the tenants will go from $300 a month to $365 a month. That’s too much of an increase at once, so you’ll need to spread it out so tenants can afford the increase each year.

On top of the ethical reasons not to increase tenants’ expenses too much or too quickly, if you over-increase you’ll be evicting everyone for not being able to pay and left with an empty park. That’s not good for anyone involved.

mobile-home-sellers

2. Find Opportunities in Lower-Occupancy Parks

After we have implemented the above improvements to our park’s economy, we can look at remodeling and filling all vacant homes. Then, fill all vacant lots with new or used homes.

These can astronomically increase the value of your park. For example, if each lot is evaluated at $31,500 per lot, increasing occupied lot count by 20 lots gains you $630,000 in increased value. Sure, there are costs associated with that but still tons of value increase as a result. Raise rents on those 20 additional lots, and you further increase profits.

Given that MHPs currently have compressed cap rates, if you are already at market rents, a lot-filling/value-add strategy can be a highly valuable way to increase profits. Due to this, it may be worth considering taking on parks with lower occupancy and higher room for value-add.

If you do go that route, be sure to take financing options into consideration. If you are less than 70% occupied, financing terms become less attractive.

Another thing to take into consideration is whether your market can handle such an increase in occupancy. If your park’s in a 30,000-person town and you want to increase your occupancy by 100 lots in 24 months, then good luck to you. You will likely only fill one or two lots a month in a market like that, so take it into consideration before getting too excited. (Actually, save your excitement for extracurricular activities, not mobile home park investing.)

Many MHPs have already been improved. I believe that opportunities exist in the parks that have not yet been maximized—the parks that have been left behind, if you will. Mainly, I’m referring to parks that have significant upside due to low occupancy.

We still need to stick to our criteria and not veer from our numbers, but we can take on parks that others have left behind. It means more work and more capital and consequently more upside.

Related: How to Evaluate Mobile Home Park Investments for Profitability

3. Increase the Length of Your Business Plan

If you are bringing investors in on this mix and you are trying to figure out how they can make sufficient returns, you may need to turn a three-year plan into a five-year plan (or even seven-year plan) to make the numbers jive.

More time equals more rent raises and more time to decrease expenses and increase occupancy. This may help bridge the gap between profitable returns for you and profitable returns for your investors to make the deal work.

mobile-home-investing-cons

4. Don’t Be Scared of Park-Owned Homes

As with private utilities in MHPs, it’s up to each park owner whether to take on a significant amount of park-owned homes as part of their business plan. A park-owned home (POH) is a mobile home that is owned by the park—therefore, the park is responsible for significant repairs. Whereas a tenant-owned home is owned by the tenant, so tenants are responsible for repairs.

The latter is preferable for me, as the tenants have pride of ownership in a home that they own. This organically drives up the park’s aesthetics. Tenant-owned homes typically mean less turnover, which is also something to take into consideration.

I’m not opposed to POHs, but they need to be given the correct evaluation so we can weigh the management and capital that is put into maintenance with the turnover of POHs. It’s likely that there will at least be a few POHs that come with any given park purchase. Even if there aren’t, once you get into years two and three of operations, it’s highly likely you’ll end up with at least a few POHs to handle due to tenant turnover.

Some MHP investors love the higher cash flow that high POH-count MHPs can produce. This may be true, and overall having POHs can add additional income and prove to be profitable. There is nothing wrong with that approach. It’s simply up to the appetite of each specific investor and what they are willing to take on.

Related: 4 Common Mobile Home Title Issues (& How to Best Fix Them!)

POHs come with high maintenance and management, which, for me, does not make keeping POHs long-term worthwhile. We can buy a park with whatever number of POHs it has, with the intention to convert the homes to tenant-owned homes at a rate of about three to five years per home. We can achieve this by selling the home in full (immediate) or carrying the note if they need financing.

You need to be licensed to sell, broker, or finance mobile homes, so take that into consideration. Alternatively, you can use rent-to-own or rent-credit style programs. As time goes on, the more tenants pay rent, the closer to homeownership they get, until they are ultimately in the position where they own their home.

If you are taking the latter route, be sure to check with local authorities and have an attorney approve the program or documents you are using to make sure you are compliant with all laws. After the 2008 financial crises, laws and acts were put in place to restrict chattel loans (mobile homes fall under this category), so additional steps need to be taken to ensure you are compliant.

If you are taking on park-owned homes, you will need to evaluate the cost of repairs needed on each home. Then, take into account that you will have turnover in park-owned homes. Do your research on the anticipated turnover for your market and apply that rate to the number of homes you have so you can holistically evaluate the management, maintenance cost, and efforts you will be taking on.

When calculating for turnover, keep in mind you’ll likely need to do a light to medium remodel each time a home turns over due to wear and tear (or intentional tenant abuse), so apply those costs to your overall calculation.

Once you have evaluated the overall costs to achieve turning POHs into tenant-owned homes, you can then go back to your purchase price and adjust as necessary. Each evaluation will be park- and market-specific, so make sure you fully evaluate and are comfortable with the cost and effort involved.

Summary

You may think the park you want to buy won’t pencil out, but once you apply these four best practices, then you may come to find that your deal works after all. For a more in-depth look at how to evaluate mobile home park investments for profitability, I strongly encourage you to go back and read this article.

Have you done a mobile home park takeover? How did it go?

Tell us what you’ve learned in the comments below.

Bryce Robertson, your "Real Estate Mate," purchased his first mobile home park in 2015 with a net worth of -$50,000, with unseasoned credit and a mere $2,000 in the bank. Once Bryce closed that seemingly impossible deal, he knew that anything was possible and continued to grow his knowledge, experience, and wealth to become financially free within 2.5 years through U.S. mobile home park investing. Now Bryce had “cracked the code,” for real and figured out how to live the true American dream!
    Wenda Kennedy JD from Nikiski, Alaska
    Replied 7 months ago
    I own a MHP and I own almost all of the mobile homes. Our State laws changed so I essentially couldn't evict a mobile homeowner who misbehaved. So, I have low to moderate-income rentals -- the only bank of affordable housing in my community. Other investors in my rental market own apartments. My NOI (net operating income) is better than their's -- and especially my ROI (return on investment ratio). For the MHs rehabs, my return is 20% to 100%. My investor friends used to look down on me because I invested in mobile homes rather than multi-family properties. Funny, my status has been elevated with the new popularity of MHPs. I've gone from "trailer trash" to being considered a smart investor. And to think that I was quietly flying under the radar while taking my profits to the bank.
    Bryce Robertson Rental Property Investor
    Replied 7 months ago
    Thanks for sharing Wenda. Thanks also for contributing to affordable housing and making more houses available in the affordable housing space.
    Gail Travers
    Replied 7 months ago
    Before investing in a Manufactured Home Park, consider reading Esther Sullivan's excellent study, "Manufactured Insecurity." In it, she describes the abuse mobile home owners face at the hands of predatory investors and how this negatively affects the entire community. This entire scheme reeks of entitlement on the part of the investors who feel as Mr. Robertson does that mobile home owners have been getting a great deal for years at the hands of previous landlords - somehow not paying their share or some other convoluted idea. This is a load of BS as owners of these homes tend to pay rent raises based on increases in taxes and other capital needs that occur in the community. It's not about creating a passive income stream for out of state investors, but about providing affordable housing for people. There is a great myth perpetrated that investors come in and beautify these communities, offering a much more pleasant experience for the people living there. This is not the truth. When the investors come in and start their bullying tactics, threats, pushing of responsibility on the homeowners, you better believe there will be push back. We, in Akron, NY fought for protection from these predators and with the help of other renters in NYS, we won significant protections. But, we are not done. People who live in parks all over the country are organizing for protections. The business model described above is destructive. While the author may think that by having homeowners feel a pride of ownership in their homes and thus "organically" a miracle happens and everybody takes care of their homes is missing what happens to people when they are deciding between whether they can afford the heat bill or their medicine.
    Bryce Robertson Rental Property Investor
    Replied 7 months ago
    There is no business model described above. Although there are a few ways above that mention how to make more affordable homes available in an industry with massive demand and low supply. I takes lots of risk and capital to make this possible and I take my hat off to anyone bold enough to step in a solve that problem. By making more and more homes available, by increasing the curb appeal of a park, increasing the professionalism of management, by helping solve problems for tenants and fulfilling their needs, by enhancing the community atmosphere; not only does the tenants quality of life improve, so does the overall experience for the neighborhood, the city, and when these efforts are multiplied across the country, its improving the amount of and quality of affordable housing, and its all being done keeping an average lot rent of around $300 a month. That's problem solving on a monumental level! Mobile Home Parks alone cant completely solve the abundant affordable housing problem in America (as there simply aren't enough parks to house the amount of folk who fall within the need of having affordable housing), but at this point it holds the highest value and contributed the most to solving this ever expanding problem, which I believe is the biggest housing problem in America. With all that's happening around us in today's economic environment, this problem to be solved is only getting larger and larger and will need more and more effort to help solve. I'd like to ask you Gail Travers, how have you positively contributed to solving the affordable housing problem in America? How many lives have you positively changed by putting your money at risk and by working hard to pull together all the people and resources necessary to create an opportunity for other people that seriously need it? Have you put your money where your mouth is? It's easy to talk or drop negative comments online, although our actions speak louder than our words. I only hope that you can use your negativity to motivate you enough to take massive action to play an active role is solving the problem you are talking about.
    Katie Rogers from Santa Barbara, California
    Replied 7 months ago
    Inflation? Well, sure, but a lot of landlords raise rent more than the rate of inflation even as the wages of their tenants had not risen for at least a decade.
    Bryce Robertson Rental Property Investor
    Replied 7 months ago
    As park owners we cannot control how much tenants earn, but we can control lot rents and in the affordable housing space, we are still at about $300 a month lot rent nationwide. Sure there are parks (4 star and 5 star parks) especially in locations like California and New York that are gated communities with luxurious club house's that have lot rents in excess of $1,000 a month and home prices over $100K. I'm assuming these are the landlords you are referring to here? If that's the case, I totally get your standpoint. That is absurd and that is not at all affordable housing. Having that said, affordable housing is the only section of mobile home parks investing that I ever talk about, and that makes up for the vast majority of mobile home parks nationwide. Affordable housing is where the opportunity lies, because that is where the biggest housing problem in America needs to be solved. I write these articles in aim of helping more and more investors gain sound education in order to come to the table and help solve this problem.
    Ron Barone
    Replied 7 months ago
    Unfortunately GREED is running like wildfire though America...Its really sad when investors take advantage of the elderly,disabled and even our Vets... Investor's see MHP people as weak and they will not fight back.... I am a retired business man and my father also was a retired business man... my father and myself took care of our disabled, elderly and our Vets. Unfortunately the "new style investors" are much more aggressive and would throw there own mother under the bus to make a buck... MHP are the new way to get ahead....Very sad....new laws must be enacted to curb this type of "PREDATORY" investments or the homelessness will increase each year that this is allowed in our Country.
    Bryce Robertson Rental Property Investor
    Replied 7 months ago
    Sounds like you have a lot of generalized and merely opinionated comments here Ron. I feel that you want the problem of affordable housing to be solved in America. I'd urge you to take that frustration and energy, and put it into productive use, by playing an active role in putting your money, time, efforts and expertise on the table to take massive action and solve the problem that concerns you. It's massive action like this that causes monumental change. It takes courage, risk and dedication to see these actions through. Martin Luther King was a prime example of taking what concerns him most and transmuting that energy into massive forward productivity to be the cause of action in making positive change in the things he finds most important. Complaining provides no value to anyone unless those complaints drive our actions to solve the problems we are bothered about. I wish you the upmost success in taking massive actions to solve the problems that concern you Ron. And please keep in mind that readers here at BP are playing an active role in getting educated so they too can put their money, time and efforts at risk by solving problems. This is an education platform and the only valuable role one can play here is by positively contributing to it and providing value to others.
    Gail Travers
    Replied 7 months ago
    My opinions expressed here provide an insight and education into the lived experience of a mobile home park "takeover" as you so aptly call it. Our new owners (Sunrise Capital Investors - 3 years we have been fighting them) starting by raising the rent 36% immediately. We have fought tirelessly and continue to fight to get them out. The idea of curb appeal is a joke...nothing has been done to improve one inch of this community. They tried a mass eviction of 15 families - the judge was incredulous at the greed and lack of any ability to work with the residents and said no way. Your sarcasm and citing Martin Luther King as an example are further proof of a knowledge deficit on how to effect social change (like solving the affordable housing crisis). This is how I put my "money where my mouth is". I am an active leader in the national organization MHAction and work every single day to improve the life of my own family and my neighbors. I spent a career in nursing, caring for people who so badly needed help and human kindness. I bought a house, paid my taxes and worked every day just like everybody else. It is not money I had to offer because I chose a different way to contribute, but work - going to work, caring for people and trying to change the world one life at a time. And don't worry, we are taking massive actions. Testimony from our residents in this park helped NYS pass protections for predatory investors in June 2019.
    Bryce Robertson Rental Property Investor
    Replied 7 months ago
    I'm glad you are taking some form of action to help improve the lives of others. It seems like the work you are doing is productive. Simply dropping negative generalized comments on an article on an education platform is not productive, but I do honor your enthusiasm. Making blanket statements that park owners are predators and park tenants are victims is clearly a generalization and an uneducated one. I do wish you success in your productive endeavors. This is an education platform though, so unless you are stopping by to add value here, then you'd be best directing your energy elsewhere where you actually can be productive. Wishing you all the best.
    Ron Barone
    Replied 7 months ago
    Bryce, Martin Luther King is not the man you should be using as an example of right from wrong....Do you really think that King would have purchased a MHP and double or triple the fees to rent a piece of DIRT no bigger then my garage ,I think he new better then that, dont you think.... 31 yrs of business experience is what I can use to compare right from wrong and how to treat people.... Ive watched 2 local MHP go down hill since they were taken over from there Mom and Pop owners...Both were bought by "Predatory Corporations" and many of my customers lived in these parks so I have first hand knowledge on "what really happens" in MHP after they were taken over and its NOT GOOD at all.... I also have 2 Mom and Pop Park owners that were my former customers that have enough sense NOT to sell to a Predator type firm, in fact both are willing to let there tenants try purchasing and co-oping when they are ready to sell in the near future just to keep them safe from exploitation, both of them actually care about there tenants ... In my opinion the right of first refusal should be law to allow the people who own the homes to have first rights, this would keep the BAD APPLES out of the picture.... Bryce I hope you are not one of those bad apples and sees opportunity and take advantage of my grandmother or are you one of those guys who would run over your mother to own a Ferrari... I hope not, because there are to many GREEDY DICKS in this country and its getting worse everyday.
    Bryce Robertson Rental Property Investor
    Replied 7 months ago
    Sorry to hear your frustration. Seems like you have had a bad experience with a few parks, and keep in mind you experience with a few parks does not make up for the entire industry or have any reflection on other park owners. You will see that when I mentioned Martin Luther King, it was an example of taking action on something we want to see changed. Please also keep in mind this is an education platform where people like myself, dedicate free time to provide valuable education to investors. Just to bring you up to pace; lot rents in our parks average $300 a month. We have be know to give Thanksgiving turkey's to each lot come thanksgiving time to say thanks to our tenants, we prefer to hire people who live in the park to be manager and maintenance (over people from outside the park), from time to time, we have bought medications, food, supplies and appliances for tenants in need, and we are continuously making improvements in the park to increase aesthetics and strengthen the community vibe. Thanks in advance for keeping an open mind and knowing that there are tons of good park owners who are making a positive change for everyone involved.
    Patrick Sears from Midlothian, Virginia
    Replied 7 months ago
    I'm not sure about the "greedy dicks" in this country, but there certainly is a troubling increase in the amount of ENTITLED DICKS in this country who think that everything from cheap housing to free health care, education, food and everything else under the sun is some God-given right. What the hell is wrong with you people?!?! If, for example, your wages haven't gone up in 30 years while the cost of your lot rent has, that is not the f*%king problem of the "predatory corporation". That is YOUR PROBLEM. If you made choices in your life that have caused you to be a property RENTER and not a property OWNER, then don't bitch when you find things like increasing rents that are out of your control. None of you have any right to blast Bryce (who hasn't given any indication that he is overly greedy or abusive) for running a profitable operation. Gail Travers, by getting NYS to pass unconstitutional "protections" against investors, all you have accomplished is to decrease the rental pool of available properties, be cause no one in their right mind operates rentals in NYS or NJ. You also don't have the right to demand an owner sell to your little "co-op" either. The owner MAY decide to sell to you IF you meet the market price. And while we appreciate you service as a nurse (a career YOU chose), it does not entitle you to discounted rent or other rights from a private entity. Wow, socialist much?
    Katie Rogers from Santa Barbara, California
    Replied 7 months ago
    The entire disdainful tone toward renters is shameful. In my community, for example, people making twice the national median income are renters because the local median house 16-20 times the national median income. The reason for landlords to be mindful of the income of their the typical tenant in their tenant pool is because in order to minimize vacancies, and the cost of vacancies, you do not want to price out your tenants. It takes time to save for a down payment. If employers refuse to regularly raise wages,but landlords continue to heedlessly raise rents, the end result is the situation we now have allover America, where people working full-time in good jobs are paying too much for rent. You see, they may have qualified when they first moved in, but it doesn't take long for their salary to end up less than a third of the rent. 50% of renters pay more than 30% of their income to rent, and 50% of them are paying more than 50% of their income to rent. I myself was once in a situation where the landlord suddenly raised the rent 26%, but my salary did not change. At no point did the nurse imply that her career entitled her to discounted rent or "other rights." Wow, straw man much?
    Gail Travers
    Replied 7 months ago
    Actually, Mr. Sears, you are incorrect about many of your assumptions. In our park, we met the purchase price of the park after completing due diligence activities that determine fair market value of the park after the owners agreed to sell to us so we could have our "little co-op" as you said. When the deadline for the purchase arrived, the owners decided they needed a million more than the fair market value to make the deal. So, it really has nothing to do with fair market value. It has to do with paying off investors and dumping the park once all the value is wrung out of it. My comments about nursing were in response to Bryce asking me how I put my "money where my mouth is". From what I can discern, Americans contribute to society in various ways - teachers, health care workers, factory workers, and a million other ways. The idea is that we work together for the betterment of our families and our communities. I am unsure why you think that makes me entitled. Also the comment about working for thirty years with no raise does not reflect my career. I started as a housekeeper in a facility, went to LPN school, RN school and then got a Bachelors Degree in Nursing - all the time working and raising a family. Your assumptions about people and entitlement are way, way off from what I have seen in my experience. Also, I understand that some in life may not have the tools or money to continue their education as I did and may not increase their income as I was able to do. But, these people contribute to our lives in other ways. Who am I (or you) to judge what value each contributes? Lastly, I made a choice to live in this mobile home. I paid $104,000 for it to position myself responsibly in a home that met my needs. Your picture shows a young man - I am 67 years old, so I am certainly in a different phase of my life - the phase where no one wants to be a pain in the neck to their kids. The new owners (Sunrise Capital Investors) arrived two months after I did. My thought out plan for retirement didn't pan out as expected. As you say, my choice, so sucks to be me I guess. Our owners have made many people in this park who paid their bills and never took a dime from anyone eligible for "free food, free healthcare" all because we were purchased by predatory investors who have done ZERO to improve the quality of life for anyone in this park.
    Katie Rogers from Santa Barbara, California
    Replied 7 months ago
    A lot of typical tenants are in low-paying jobs that have been designated as "essential workers." The irony burns.
    Ron Barone
    Replied 7 months ago
    To Katie Rogers and Gail Travers, I know ,I was a landlord for 24 yrs and I watched what happens when a tenant loses there job or has a unforeseen accident .... I would help them instead of evicting them.....I feel for the average Joe out there just trying to make a living but are facing a wall of Dicks on a daily basis.... Many of these Dicks had a silver spoon in there mouth when they were born and had no moral values instilled in them from birth, everything was given to them from Mommy and Daddy's hard work and have no clue how to put a hard and honest days work in.....I personally watched one of these silver spoon Dicks go to jail for ripping costumers off by overcharging and lying in court.....Unfortunately these type of investors tend to turn a blind eye to a struggling family that may not be able to afford a 20, 30 or 40% or more rent raises... Things are changing in this world especially in America with more and more Dicks are being born everyday, ruthless ,uncaring and heartless................And finally the huge profits that can be made in MHP is incredible, I know I looked into them and most returns are 25-40% on my investment annually and that before raising the lot rent....That's why Mom and Pop didn't raise rates they were making a good living already for renting a piece of dirt... The problem now is that the new investor is not interested in 25% profits he is looking at 50,60% or more..... This is where the GREEDY investors comes in and hurt many of there tenants by raising rates higher and higher until the tenants home value is crushed under the weight of higher and higher rents for that piece of dirt under that home.... This is a gold mine for investors, but a TRAP for the tenants.......OOH!! Patrick, do me a favor look in the mirror while reading your post, I hope the hell you are not one of those DICKS,
    Mike Kanevsky
    Replied 7 months ago
    I am currently in one of the industries that have been affected the most by COVID-19. I own bars and have a large event planning company for nightclubs and festivals in New York City. I have had a very successful and growing business until the pandemic hit NYC and I was forced to shut down all operations and my revenue went to zero. I am not sure about the future of nightclubs and events and this might be similar to owning a Blockbuster store in the early 2000s. I have always had a passion for Real Estate and investing and feel like this would be the perfect time to get into space. I strongly believe and agree with economists who have been stating that we are heading into a terrible recession or even a depression. I can see the need for affordable housing and I was fascinated with Bryce’s articles on mobile home investing including this one. I saw that he had online classes on http://www.propertyworkzusa.com/ and I reached out to him and was able to get a discount due to the current market conditions. I finished the course in 5 days and it was very informative and covered everything from buying, managing, selling, and syndication. I recommend this to anyone as it can be applied to other real estate investing as well where you would have multiple units. I am looking forward to starting my real estate investment journey.
    Bryce Robertson Rental Property Investor
    Replied 7 months ago
    Thanks for the feedback Mike. Glad you enjoyed the "A to Z of MHP's - Home Study Course." Let me know once you have your first park under contract and I'll review the deal with you to see if there are any red flags and to make sure it really is the type of investment you are looking for. All the best deal hunting in the interim!
    Gail Travers
    Replied 7 months ago
    Bryce, I am struck by your objection to generalized statements regarding what has happened to the mobile home industry and the new breed of investors who are attracted to the opportunity to make money. When you talk about previous park owners being in "some sort of time bubble" you negate the power of relationship-based business. These owners knew their tenants, and lived nearby or even in the park itself. What you perceive as people living in some isolated world of low rent and easy street is actually laughable. People bought their homes here because they were affordable - it was a responsible decision to buy what they could afford. The spatial closeness of the homes bred a sense of community. The closeness of the owners encouraged the ability to develop relationships that fostered general well-being - kind of a win-win. Modest increases in rent were expected and accepted. What is happening today is absent that. For example, the owner of this park is an investment company from Florida that bought this park to make a profit. They love to talk about how they are saving affordable housing but we are living with the consequences of their actions. If I sound bitter, it is because I have borne witness to the pain and misery this business has caused. There is another nearby park that has gone through this experience. The park has gone from a well-maintained community with a waiting list to a mess - streets in disrepair, disgruntled tenants and desperation to get new people in to live in new single-wides they have set up to replace the ones torn down in disrepair. We are headed down that same path. As the rent goes up, the value of our homes goes down. Mike, be careful in this business. Covid is not done wreaking havoc in any of our lives and I would expect it would be better to start a business providing something of value to people with wealth than with people who are barely hanging on if maximizing profits is your aim.
    Bryce Robertson Rental Property Investor
    Replied 6 months ago
    I agree that more is still to come economically. We have a crazy few years ahead of us. Affordable housing is, and will be for the foreseeable future, the biggest problem that needs solving in real estate in the U.S. Currently mobile home parks are still the #1 contributor to solving that problem. MHP's are at about $300 for average lot rent nationwide. I'm assuming your not objecting to that being considered as "affordable." Yes there are cases in FL, CA and NY where prices are far exceeding $300 a month. Those parks are typically much higher quality and in much better locations than the $300 a month parks elsewhere in the country and are not typically considered affordable housing. I'm not sure those states can provide affordable housing like the rest of the country given their insanely inflated real estate pricing bubbles (especially CA and NY.) It's misfortune you are having a bad run at your park. I feel for you! Please keep in mind, that is not my domain, and my parks average under $300 a month in rents. That is the type of park I'm always referring to in my articles (affordable housing parks with rents near $300 a month.) Wishing you all the best!