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Mobile Home Park Investing

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Ed O.
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Wastewater and wells in MHPs and Tiny Home Communities

Ed O.
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  • Statewide, MO
Posted Apr 29 2024, 19:11

I'm curious to hear how these are set up in newer developments where city water and sewer are too far away. Sewers to me are a foreign concept as I've been fortunate to always be on city water and sewer. 

What would a new, rural setup look like for say, 50 to 100 units. Is there a rough and dirty rule for sharing wells and using a common septic for multiple dwellings to ease up on costs and make things for efficient?

Thanks in advance!

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Replied May 15 2024, 15:38

following for more info

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Ed O.
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Ed O.
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Replied May 20 2024, 21:01

Bump

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Don Konipol
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Don Konipol
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Replied May 27 2024, 09:45
Quote from @Ed O.:

I'm curious to hear how these are set up in newer developments where city water and sewer are too far away. Sewers to me are a foreign concept as I've been fortunate to always be on city water and sewer. 

What would a new, rural setup look like for say, 50 to 100 units. Is there a rough and dirty rule for sharing wells and using a common septic for multiple dwellings to ease up on costs and make things for efficient?

Thanks in advance!

Well and septic.  

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Ed O.
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Ed O.
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Replied May 27 2024, 17:48

@Don Konipol

Since we're sitting in front of computers and not having a conversation, I can't tell:

1. Are you being sarcastic? 

or 

2. Did you not read the post? 

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Replied May 29 2024, 05:12

I don't think @Don Konipol was being sarcastic he just answered your post with basically the only answer there is.  Outside of City services you will need to punch a well and depending on the size of the community maybe two.  For sewage you will need septic tanks and drainfields.  It will have to be professionally designed.  I have heard some systems have individual tanks with shared drainfields but again it would need to be professionally designed.  I suppose you could save some money that way but at this point it is going to be so expensive it won't even matter anymore as you will be punch drunk with the invoices piled up on your desk.

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Jamie Hora
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Jamie Hora
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  • San Antonio
Replied May 29 2024, 08:54

If you wish for each home/lot to have their own septic tank, counties or city code will usually require a minimum lot size (1/2ac - 1 ac min roughly).  Since you said tiny homes, this is probably not an option.  

Septic fields are an option, but they can require a quite a bit of open space.  Best advice is to reach out a septic designer and see how many drain fields you would need, or how many homes you can combine into 1 field based on code & practicality.  In my experience on my commercial sites (with restaurants), roughly 1 acre out of the 4 acre site could be eaten up by a septic field. Not sure about residential though.  

A well can definitely be set up to serve more than 1 home. Just need to see how much water a well in your area can produce, plus the cost / efficiency of a larger well vs multiple individuals. 

In both scenarios with "shared" services, I would also give consideration to the shared responsibility & maintenance of the septic field , well, and equipment. 

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Jeff Flynn
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  • Auburn, AL
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Jeff Flynn
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Replied Jun 19 2024, 13:25

If you get a well to supply water, you may take on liability if a tenant were to get sick from the water.  That is why most MHP operators stay away from wells if they can.  If it is the only option, you may be able to find a company that will take on that liability and service the well to ensure it is safe. 

As far as septic goes, I think it gets a bad reputation but I honestly prefer it over city sewer.  Although the city sewer itself is pretty hassle free, it comes with being in a city and cities tend to be difficult to work with if you are running a mobile home or tiny home park.  

Typicaly the amount of septic you need is going to be determined by the bathrooms in the units you are connect to them.  A 2 bathroom mobile home would need a larger system than a 1 bathroom mobile home.   If you are going to be using tiny homes, you may be able to use one large tank with enough field lines for 2 tiny homes. Doing it that way would only be a tad bit cheaper than a separate tank for each home.  At least that is how it is around me.