The MHPTF met November 1, 2006 in Los Angeles. The task force is supposed to have full discussion of important issues in mobile home parks. In the past, for the most part, those “discussions” have not taken place. We have written about the MHPTF in several issues of THE VOICE. Our conclusion: The MHPTF is a puppet for the LA Housing Department and the park owners group. Those mobilehome owners sitting on the MHPTF are neither our representatives or “subject matter experts” as the MHPTF Guide would have us believe.
This meeting was somewhat different. Although the discussion was dominated by the LAHD chairperson,, there was some discussion about long term versus short term leases.
LONG TERM VS SHORT TERM LEASES
One topic discussed at the November 1st meeting of the L.A. Mobile Home Park Task Force was “long term vs short term leases.” Some parks across California, under local Rent Stabilization Ordinances (RSO’s), only offer long term leases to purchasers coming “off the street.” According to of the WMA, some park attorneys have advised park owners that this practice is legal. They do not offer rental agreements (12 months or shorter) which are under “rent control”
Why would parks offer only long term leases? Simply because any rental agreement longer than 12 months means that space is no longer under rent control, at least for the term of the lease. It is important to know, however, that as soon as the lease term runs out, the park MUST offer that resident a month to month tenancy or 12 months or less. THAT’S THE LAW.
So how is the park legally able to only offer a long term lease to prospective tenants “coming off the street?” The loophole is the definition of HOMEOWNER (798.1) The Mobilehome Residency Law, 798. As a consequence, some parks feel a “prospective tenant” is not protected by the Mobilehome Residency Law because he has NO TENANCY in a park.
We know of several parks where this is occurring. And we’d like to find out if your park does this also.
PARKS INTERFERENCE AT TIME OF SALE
Another issue in mobile home parks, suggested by CoMO-CAL as an agenda item, has been continually passed over by the MHPTF. That issue is parks interference at time of sale. This issue has several forms. The park may not accept a qualified buyer. The park may ask a resident to move an older mobile home and not allow the resident to sell it. Or the park may ask the resident to upgrade his mobile home before sale. The park may allow the resident to sell his mobile home, but require the buyer to move it. There are more.
Although this item was placed on the agenda for the MHPTF, there was no time to discuss it. It WILL be on the agenda for the January 31, 2007 meeting in Van Nuys. Please plan to attend and support our efforts. If you have other issues you would like the MHPTF to discuss, please call CoMO-CAL at 1-800-929-6061 or email us at email@example.com.