We were approached by a professional in the industry (Manufactured Housing Dealer) who sells Manufactured and Mobile Homes in the North Bay and who is very concerned about the two issues in parks, namely interference of sales and senior abuse.
Real People Are Effected
When park owners/managers cross the line, real people are effected. Here is one example. Let’s say his name is Jim. Jim is recent amputee, in and out of the hospital often, his wife is burdened by the additional stress of taking care of her husband and running their local business. His home no longer suits his physical living needs due to stairs and Jim’s wife made a “make-shift kind of ramp” to better get him in and out of the house. As a result, his health is not improving because of the additional stress. This is a form of Elder Abuse.
The Bad & The Ugly
Interference with the home sales has placed extra extreme financial and physical burdens on residents trying to sell their homes. Management: a) Does not approve any prospective buyers, b) Does not allow open house signs to better direct people to their home when having an open, c) and Embarrasses/harasses R.E. Agents, in front of potential customers.
A Real Estate Agent reported the manager at one North Bay Park harassing her about “not having obtained permission from the park to place her open house signs.” Apparently the park does not give other agents any problems. The manager continued “Don’t bother (even if the home is sold) it won’t get approved anyway.”
Other issues include managers: 1) Jacking up rents so high that the residents have to move 2) Declining every potential buyer for an available home 3) Going to seller’s home after a couple months to offer the seller a low-ball amount. The seller’s take the low ball amount just to get out. 4) Management waits the full 15 days for the potential buyers to receive their Park Denial. This is a way for management to stall the sale and get more time so the general public has less of a chance for the seller to obtain Full Market Value for their home. For most residents, their home is their only asset-and their entire life savings is tied up in it, only to be subject to a “distress sale” by a greedy, mean park manager.
We hear some managers really care about their residents:
a) The manager at Shamrock, a 55+ park is Cecille. She is a GREAT Manager who cares about her residents and is just a “star”. She should be recognized for her good deeds/treatment to her residents. She takes time to hear residents concerns, and does something about it when deemed necessary and within her power, and has great people skills.
b) Anita is the manager at Roseland Mobile Home Park, another 55+ park. “She is a wonderful lady who should be recognized for her people skills-and REALLY caring about her residents. I purposely moved an elderly lady there because Anita would take good care of her. She is always available to her residents and her actions have been proven.”
c) Jody runs shop at Las Casitas de Sonoma, an All-Age park. She is a “Great gal, another good manager. She helps coordinate summer school programs for the children of her park-ON HER OWN and should also be recognized.”
“Many residents are going to be grateful for the changes that will take place, eventually, as a result of your articles. However, many are afraid to speak up and I want YOU to write something about that-how they can go about being anonymous to report bad, illegal and unethical activity by park managers. People are DEATHLY afraid to speak up. We must assure them by telling them, very clearly, HOW to speak up-and who to trust. You wrote/ran a previous article on that too. I suggest you have them contact you directly. That would make them feel safe knowing they have you on their side. You’d be bombarded-but I can easily help you with that.”
Who Can You Trust?
“Residents simply do not know where to go for help.” Now residents have an option. We at MH Life have been working for MH owners now for 12 years. We ran a non-profit, namely Coalition of Mobilehome Owners- California, for 7 years. It was successful, providing a terrific newsletter and low cost legal help. The magazine has been printed for 3 years and now reaches 25,000 homes monthly.
Can we be trusted? 100%! We are not out for self profit. The magazine is FREE, although we do ask for donations. Everything in the magazine can be documented, i.e. we can prove what we write. If we make a mistake, we correct it in writing.
Our goal is to educate and inform. Also to build a community of folks around California. We suggest all readers get on board, together we will make a difference. Donate and/or volunteer to help out. We need distributors in parks not now getting the magazine. We need folks to step up to run Regional Organizations (see pages F-H). We need folks to tell their friends living in other parks about the magazine.
It is important that everyone know the basics. MH owners have rights. Don’t let park managers take away your rights! We will support your efforts. Want a personal visit? Join ooVoo (video conferencing) and invite Frank into your home. Or you can call Frank at 818-886-6479 or email him at firstname.lastname@example.org. (email is best if you have it).