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Jury Awards Millions to Residents in Suit Against Controversial Community Operator

November 26th, 2018 Comments off

 

JuryAwardsMillionsResidentsSuitAgainstCOntroversialCommunityOwnerKortScottDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

AP and numerous local media announced last week that residents in a manufactured home community in California won a multi-million-dollar judgment from a jury.

 

A jury has awarded more than $5.5 million to 31 residents of a Southern California mobile home park[sic] rife with problems including sinkholes, sewage backups and rats,” said AP and KUSI.

Lead attorney against the Kort & Scott owned property “…Brian Kabateck says the residents, many elderly, lived in squalor at the property that was once a trash dump for the city of Long Beach,” per AP.

 

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The local media news video below was posted prior to the settlement, but tees up some of the background and issues involved in what many in that area view as a scandal.

 

 

The property went into bankruptcy, prior to the judgement, per the Long Beach Post.

 

 

The people who bought this in 2014 knew what they were buying. They paid $23.5 million and they saw this as their personal ATM machine and they didnt 1 want to do any repairs, they didn’t want to do any fixes,” attorney for the community’s residents, Brian Kabateck said, per KABC.

The defense attorney for the property owners told prospective jurors that it was known that the development was built on a landfill, explaining that residents were given disclosures about that point.

That apparently didn’t sway jurors.

After being sued for neglect and other causes of action, “owner of North Long Beach mobile home park [sic] files for bankruptcy,” according to the Long Beach Post.

The owners of Friendly Village Mobile Home Park1, who have been sued by tenants over their alleged neglect of the North Long Beach park, filed for bankruptcy” in October, court records show.

A Beverly Hills attorney representing Friendly Village in the bankruptcy proceeding, Howard I. Camhi, did not comment to the Long Beach Post at the time, nor did Phil Woog, the Costa Mesa attorney defending Friendly Village in the civil lawsuit.

Industry veteran Marty Lavin, JD, has previously opined in several commentaries that community operators bear responsibility for business practices that instigate resident, legal, and regulatory furor.  Resident groups, such as MHPHOA and GSMOL, are among those that routinely beat-the-drums about Kort and Scott, which arguably causes issues for other community owners that don’t engage in similarly controversial practices.

Last year MHProNews noted that local media failed to present another Kort and Scott community’s perspective, but in this Long Beach case, it seems that the California firm declined the opportunity.

 

Public Official, ABC News, Manufactured Home Community Owner Clash Over Resident Concerns

 

By contrast, MHProNews reported last week on an uproar in another state, where that manufactured home community operator promptly replied to our request for comments. That community owner robustly addressed concerns by local media and that town’s officials.  That prior, unrelated report, is linked further below, and a follow up to it is planned in the near term.

That’s this afternoon’s “News through the lens of manufactured homes, and factory-built housing,” © where “We Provide, You Decide.” © ## (News, analysis, and commentary.)

Footnote 1: typo and terminology errors are in the original media reports.

(Related Reports are further below. Third-party images and content are provided under fair use guidelines.)

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SoheylaKovachDailyBusinessNewsMHProNewsMHLivingNewsSubmitted by Soheyla Kovach to the Daily Business News for MHProNews.com. Soheyla is a managing member of LifeStyle Factory Homes, LLC, the parent company to MHProNews, and MHLivingNews.com.

 

Related Reports:

Kort & Scott Financial Group (FSFG) Faces Reports of Senior Wrath

Public Official, ABC News, Manufactured Home Community Owner Clash Over Resident Concerns

Giving Thanks for Manufactured Housing Independents, Applauding “MHIdea!”

Ford and Toyota Teach Manufactured Housing Professionals and Investors

 

 

 

Kort & Scott Financial Group (FSFG) Faces Reports of Senior Wrath

July 11th, 2017 Comments off

KortScottFinancialGroupDiableEstatesAntiochManufacturedHousingIndustryDailyuBusinessNewsMHProNewsAbout three years ago, Sam Zell quipped in Chicago to hundreds of manufactured home community professionals that at Equity LifeStyle Properties (ELS) they discovered they had a partner without an investment they didn’t count on.

The government.

The owners of Diablo Estates have likewise learned from experience that organized residents can run to city hall, garner media attention, and often get their way.

A mobile home park [sic] designed for seniors isn’t well-suited to young families, argues Vivian Espinoza, 74,” says the East Bay Times (EBT).

The EBT – which understands that dramatic headlines are what draws clicks and readers, reports that “Seniors fear Antioch mobile home park [sic] will accept all ages.” Fear?

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“SIC “defined, credits are as shown. Given how often terminology is mangled, MHProNews will strive to clearly show when the errors are those of the speaker or third party. by the use of [sic] in the copy.

You’ve got children running around — there’s no place for them to play,” Espinoza reportedly said, per EBT.  She pointed out the community doesn’t have a playground.  “And there’s more vandalism. Teenagers get bored and they vandalize.”

Ironically,” said a community professional that had pointed the developing story out to MHProNews, “that’s the kinds of comments a NIMBYite who wants to stop a manufactured home community development or expansion might make.”

The protests look to be organized by the MHPHOA.

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Collage from the MHPHOA website,, shown under fair use guidelines.

From their website, “MHPHOA PLEDGE: The MHPHOA is a grass roots movement who are passionately dedicated to the preservation and protection of mobile home owner’s rights in Kort & Scott Financial Group (KSFG) dba Sierra Corporate Management (SCM) mobile home parks in the State of California.”

One local industry professional, speaking of the record, rhetorically asked “While many seniors certainly may prefer a 55 + community, do community owners with millions invested no longer have rights too?”

About KSFG

Based in Southern California, Kort & Scott Financial Group, LLC. is an owner and operator” of manufactured home communities, says their acquisition website. “Since 1989, the company has acquired over 9,500” sites, says the firm’s website.

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Collage from the KSFG website, shown under fair use guidelines.

California’s Codes and Standards says there are some 5,239 manufactured home communities licensed to operate in that state.

Several dozen are in KSFG’s portfolio.

Because it appears that the vast majority of Vista Diablo Mobile Estates’ residents are seniors,” said the EBT report, “council members responded to their impassioned pleas by unanimously agreeing to consider adopting an urgency ordinance at their July 11 meeting.”

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Credit, Google Maps.

The ordinance, if approved, would establish an immediate moratorium on any changes to the mobile home park’s residency requirements while city officials study the matter further and come up with a permanent set of rules,” concluded the local media report.

Not one word of the EBT report indicated any input or outreach to the property owners. Nor was there any attempt to represent their postion, beyond citing the following: “Although federal housing law prohibits discrimination on a wide variety of fronts, an amendment in the 1980s allowed landlords and developers to restrict housing to seniors as long as that demographic comprised at least 80 percent of the complex’s units.”

The Daily Business News plans to reach out, track and report back on this and similar developments. ## (News, Analysis.)

(Image credits are as shown above, and when provided by third parties, are shared under fair use guidelines.)

SoheylaKovachManufacturedHomeLivingNewsManufacturedHousingIndustryDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews-Submitted by Soheyla Kovach to the Daily Business News for MHProNews.com.

Capital One Provides Loan for Purchase of Calif. Manufactured Home Community

January 6th, 2016 Comments off

Calif__sierra_mobile_home_park_santa_clarita__mhphoa__creditA press release from Capital One reveals it has arranged a $3.27 million Fannie Mae adjustable-rate loan for the purchase of Sierra Mobile Home Park in Santa Clarita, California. The seniors-only community has 74 home sites and features a clubhouse, pool and laundry room.

Senior Vice President Chad Thomas Hagwood, the head of Capital One Multifamily’s Southeast office in Birmingham, Ala. originated the transaction. The seven-year loan has a three-year interest only period with amortization on a 30-year schedule.

Sierra Mobile Home Park was built in 1956 and has been in the hands of the same owner for 50 years. The borrower intends to increase occupancy and adjust rates to market levels as it aims to increase its net operating income (NOI).

Separately, MHProNews has learned from MHPHOA that Kort & Scott Financial Group (KSFG) purchased Sierra in Oct. 2015, managed by Sierra Corporate Management, and that site rents are $650/mth. In a phone call, Capital One would neither confirm nor deny that KSFG is the current owner.

MHPHOA (Mobile Home Park Home Owners Allegiance) is a grass roots organization that advocates on behalf of residents of manufactured home communities. ##

(Photo credit: Google Earth/MHPHOA–Sierra Mobile Home Park)

matthew-silver-daily-business-news-mhpronews-comArticle submitted by Matthew J. Silver to Daily Business News-MHProNews)