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Posts Tagged ‘New Hampshire’

Stop, Manufactured Home “Thief”

October 23rd, 2017 Comments off

ManufacturedHomeStolenNotMobileHomePostStarDailyBusinessNewsMHProNewsIn the latest in our Daily Business News periodic reports on problematic, or allegations of illegal behavior that occur in the industry, a Pennsylvania man who stole a manufactured home in a storage lot was sentenced last week.

Robert D. Brown pleaded guilty to second-degree grand larceny, a felony, for what the PostStar described as a $60,000, 70’ manufactured home.

The September 2013 theft occurred when a professional manufactured home transporter (a.k.a. ‘toter driver’) took a home from a parking lot near the Big Apple Diner in Hampton, NY per the PostStar.

The case summary, per Don Lehman’s reports.

The 2013 theft of the home occurred in a parking lot off Route 4, in Hampton, NY.

DonLehmanPostStarNewYorkpostedManufacturedHousingIndustryProfessionalNewsMHProNews

Lehman mini bio, per the Post Star.

The home had been left there by the owner, “pending transportation elsewhere.”

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RobertDBrownPostStarTheftManufacturedHomeDailyBusinessNewsMHproNewsPolice and the owner located it in south central Pennsylvania in the spring of 2014, and alleged that Brown carted it off and gave it to a relative.”

  • Brown was picked up by Washington County sheriff’s officers from the jail in York County, Pennsylvania.
  • Brown completed a sentence there for possessing the stolen manufactured home, for a 2015 case in Pennsylvania.
  • Brown had worked for a company that transported manufactured homes. His former boss fired him for theft, had determined that a home he had brought to Pennsylvania was stolen.
  • Police recovered the home, which Brown had allegedly gave to a relative.  The home was returned to the owner.
  • Brown was represented by the Washington County Public Defender’s Office for his arraignment.
  • The charge of grand larceny was punishable by up to 15 years in state prison.
  • Brown had no prior criminal history, and made restitution, and was given a plea bargain.
  • Washington County Judge Kelly McKeighan imposed the sentence Friday, and directing that Brown make $3,882 restitution. If Brown violates probation, he then faces up to 15 years in state prison.
  • Washington County District Attorney Tony Jordan said restitution was for loss of the value while it was unaccounted for.
  • Brown had no criminal record before the home theft, and he paid the restitution at sentencing on Friday, Jordan stated. He also completed a jail term while awaiting disposition of the case.

As HUD Code manufactured home industry professionals know, in spite of the inaccurate moniker of ‘mobile home’ used too often by the media, this kind of theft is a rather rare occurrence in the industry.  The reasons are many, including the fact that specialized skills and equipment are needed to move a manufactured home. Moves of a true manufactured home are rare, not routine.

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So to call a manufactured home ‘mobile’ is not only technically inaccurate, but it’s the least common state of the home; manufactured homes are immobile far more than mobile.

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Learn more from videos and reports, by clicking the linked stills above.

 

By contrast, the theft of motor vehicles in 2016 is larger than the total retail sales of the new manufactured home industry last year.  About $5.9 billion was lost to motor vehicle theft in 2016, per iii.org.  ## (News, analysis.)

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

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Drama, Take Three – MHC Infighting Over Potential Sale

April 20th, 2017 Comments off
MHCWeighsAcquisitionOfferUnderStrangeCircumstancescreditZillowBriarcrestEstates-postedtothedailybusinessnewsmhpronewsmhlivingnews

A home in Briarcrest Estates. Credit: Zillow.

In the ongoing saga of Laconia, New Hampshire – based Briarcrest Estates, both the tempers, and stakes, are higher than ever.

According to the Laconia Daily Sun, Briarcrest co-op board members Joe McCarthy, Don Vachon and John Drouin have resigned from the six-member board, after they came under fire over a proposal to sell the community to Hometown America Corporation.

A special meeting has been called for April 24 to fill the vacancies, and another meeting has been set for May 20 to consider selling the community.

As the Daily Business News covered here, the Briarcrest story dates back to July 2013, when community owners Mark and Ruth Mooney tentatively agreed to sell the Briarcrest Estates to Hometown America for $10 million. In compliance with state law, the terms of the transaction were disclosed to the tenants, who had 60 days to make a counteroffer by presenting a purchase-and-sales agreement. The law requires the community owner to bargain in good faith with the residents or their organization.

Residents of Briarcrest Estates then formed The Lakemont Cooperative Inc. and, with assistance from ROC-USA and the New Hampshire Community Loan Fund, matched the offer from Hometown America Corporation.

After initial resistance, Mark and Ruth Mooney agreed to sell the 183 acre, 241 home site community to the cooperative, which has owned and managed it since April 2014.

EditorialResidentOpposesSaletoHometownAmericacreditGoogle-postedtothedailybusinessnewsmhpronewsmhlivingnews

Credit: Google.

Fast forward to January 2017, when things changed. That change came in the form of a offer to buy Briarcrest Estates.

It was from Hometown America.

It’s an unsolicited offer, period. A fire-from-the hip” proposal, said Vachon at the time.

The Hometown America deal reportedly included retiring the outstanding balances on a $8 million loan from TD Bank and $2 million loan from the New Hampshire Community Loan Fund as well as covering the prepayment penalty of $873,000 on the bank loan, closing costs and real estate transfer taxes associated with the transaction.

For some residents, the timing was “convenient.”

Although the board has claimed the offer was not solicited, the letter from Hometown America Corporation outlining its terms begins ‘per our discussions,’ indicating that board members have been communicating with Hometown America for some time,” said Katherine Carlson, who also was among the first officers of the cooperative.

MHCWeighsAcquisitionOfferUnderStrangeCircumstancescreditBriarcrestEstates-postedtothedailybusinessnewsmhpronewsmhlivingnews

Credit: Briarcrest Estates.

Residents in the community say that it has become a neighbor-versus-neighbor battle, with one faction wanting to sell the community, and the other wanting it to remain a cooperative.

It’s just been ridiculous,” said McCarthy’s wife, Carrie, who said her husband and the other board members were unfairly targeted for suggesting cooperative members consider an unsolicited purchase offer.

There are a small number of people in this park [sic] who are so toxic,” said McCarthy.

All they are trying to do is stop the vote. It’s not all wonderful here in the co-op. People fight and argue. It’s like something you’d see on TV.”

Resident Louise Rosand, who is in favor of remaining a co-op, says that the ability to avoid rent hikes and keep control of the community are both critical. She also feels that the three board members who resigned were not completely honest about the situation with Hometown America.

They went behind our backs,” Rosand said. “There is no financial reason to sell. We are in good standing. We have extra money to put away. The bank loves us. The park has been running smoothly.

It’s kind of like a group against group. Your neighbor could be for or against. I live in a little section where there are four of us who are not for the sale, but if you go down the street you may find somebody who is for the sale. But you don’t go in your backyard and yell. You wave at everybody who goes by.”

 

ROC USA Commentary

An unrelated ROC USA community. Credit: ROC USA.

The ROC-NH program of the New Hampshire Community Loan Fund has helped convert nearly all of that state’s resident-owned communities, now numbering over a hundred. ROC-NH Director Tara Reardon told MHProNews it often takes time for a new cooperative to develop leaders and grow into what will become that community’s personality.

We’re confident that, if the process is transparent, the residents at Briarcrest will make the right decision for their neighbors’ and their own futures,” said Reardon.

Mike_Bullard_Marketing_and_Communications_Mgr_at_ROC_USA

Mike Bullard. Credit: Linkedin.

ROC Members are empowered to make decisions for themselves and their communities. Democracy, as they say, isn’t always pretty, I think we can agree in the wake of last year’s elections, that’s a fact,” said Mike Bullard, ROC USA Communications and Marketing Manager, in an email to MHProNews.

But making a tough decision, or even a bad decision is better than having no choice at all.” ##

 

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

 

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RC Williams, for Daily Business News, MHProNews.

Submitted by RC Williams to the Daily Business News for MHProNews.

Editorial: Resident Opposes Sale to Hometown America

March 23rd, 2017 Comments off
MHCWeighsAcquisitionOfferUnderStrangeCircumstancescreditBriarcrestEstates2-postedtothedailybusinessnewsmhpronewsmhlivingnews

Credit: Briarcrest Estates.

In a contentious story that the Daily Business News covered here, the alleged on and off discussions to sell Laconia, New Hampshire- based Briarcrest Estates to Hometown America has one resident choosing to utilize the power of the media to make their point.

According to the Laconia Daily Sun, the story dates back to July 2013, when community owners Mark and Ruth Mooney tentatively agreed to sell the Briarcrest Estates to Hometown America for $10 million.

In compliance with state law, the terms of the transaction were disclosed to the tenants, who had 60 days to make a counteroffer by presenting a purchase-and-sales agreement. The law requires the community owner to bargain in good faith with the residents or their organization.

Residents of Briarcrest Estates then formed The Lakemont Cooperative Inc. and, with assistance from the New Hampshire Community Loan Fund, matched the offer from Hometown America Corporation.

After initial resistance, Mark and Ruth Mooney agreed to sell the 183 acre, 241 home site community to the cooperative, which has owned and managed it since April 2014.

MHCWeighsAcquisitionOfferUnderStrangeCircumstancescreditBriarcrestEstates-postedtothedailybusinessnewsmhpronewsmhlivingnews

Credit: Briarcrest Estates.

Fast forward to January 17th of this year.

Doug Minahan of Hometown America Corporation wrote a letter to cooperative President Don Vachon.

Doug Minahan. Credit: LinkedIn.

It was an offer to buy Briarcrest Estates.

It’s an unsolicited offer, period. A fire-from-the hip” proposal, said Vachon at the time.

The Hometown America deal reportedly included retiring the outstanding balances on a $8 million loan from TD Bank and $2 million loan from the New Hampshire Community Loan Fund as well as covering the prepayment penalty of $873,000 on the bank loan, closing costs and real estate transfer taxes associated with the transaction.

But for some residents, they claim that the timing was “convenient.

Although the board has claimed the offer was not solicited, the letter from Hometown America Corporation outlining its terms begins ‘per our discussions,’ indicating that board members have been communicating with Hometown America for some time,” said Katherine Carlson, who also was among the first officers of the cooperative.

 

A Letter to the Editor

MHCWeighsAcquisitionOfferUnderStrangeCircumstancescreditZillowBriarcrestEstates-postedtothedailybusinessnewsmhpronewsmhlivingnews

A home in Briarcrest Estates. Credit: Zillow.

Earlier this week, resident Barbara Patterson decided to take matters into her own hands, with a letter to the editor.

Everyone has heard of Briarcrest. It’s a manufactured housing park [sic] consisting of 240 very well maintained homes on the side of Prescott Hill, within a hop, skip and jump of Laconia and Winnisquam, Paugus, Opechee and Lake Winnipesaukee,” said Patterson, in her letter to the Laconia Daily Sun.

We are very proud of our community and three and a half years ago, Mark and Ruth Mooney put it up for sale for $10 million.

Patterson then spoke to the process that residents went through.

During our formation, our very hardworking resident investment banker, our resident Merrrimack County administrator and many, many other hardworking, talented individuals — joined eventually by our resident paralegal — worked closely with ROC and formed a co-op to govern ourselves. ROC USA is a New Hampshire social venture working to make quality ownership viable for homeowners in manufactured home parks [sic],” said Patterson, who then provided her view on Hometown America.

Now our co-op is threatened by the same buyer from Chicago who originally made an offer to buy Briarcrest: Hometown America. Our second board of directors has been negotiating with Hometown since November, unbeknownst to the majority of the 230 resident owners not on the board. Originally, we were assured that we would never be sold again and I, for one, believed it,” said Patterson.

But the current board of directors has been in direct contact and providing financial information to Hometown America without our knowledge or the membership’s authorization to do so. We believe this is a breach of trust. The board is attempting to limit our discussions and have made a date for Hometown America to make a presentation to the membership and a date for a special membership meeting, although they have yet to tell us what we will be voting for.

EditorialResidentOpposesSaletoHometownAmericacreditGoogle-postedtothedailybusinessnewsmhpronewsmhlivingnews

Credit: Google.

Patterson also points to her opinion that some new owners, or seasonal residents, may not completely understand the impact of a vote for new ownership.

Some of our new owners are not aware of the serious consequences of a vote for a private owner such as Hometown America and their ability to raise our rents hundreds of dollars to help pay its own considerable debt, or to sell us to another buyer. We lose all control over our rents, rules and management,” said Patterson.

Hometown America’s reputation is less than stellar and squeaky clean. Numerous lawsuits have been filed against Hometown in states in which they own parks [sic]. We, as a co-op, want to maintain our low rents, our own governorship, and our beautiful community.”

The Daily Business News will continue to watch this story closely and provide updates. ##

 

(Image credits are as shown above.)

 

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RC Williams, for Daily Business News, MHProNews.

Submitted by RC Williams to the Daily Business News for MHProNews.

Multi-Acre MH Expansion Approved, Residents Concerned

March 9th, 2017 Comments off
MultiAcreMHExpansionApprovedResidentsConcernedcreditConcordMonitor1-postedtothedailybusinessnewsmhpronewsmhlivingnews

A Hynes Group Home. Credit: Concord Monitor.

In Allenstown, New Hampshire, officials have formally approved the sale of 166 acres of town-owned land to a Canada-based manufactured home developer, Hynes Group.

The company, which already manages the 300 unit Holiday Acres community in town, plans to expand it by an additional 210 units, which will be age-restricted.

Per the Concord Monitor, the Allenstown select board okayed the sale by a 2-1 vote this week, with selectman Jeff Gryval voting against the measure and selectmen David Eaton and Jason Tardiff in favor.

The Hynes Group says that the new homes will be larger than the current homes in the Holiday Acres community, with additional extras such as garages.

The major factor to take into the study was that it was age-restricted. And the impact of that is that it reduces the number of school-aged children dramatically,” said Russ Thibeault of Laconia-based Applied Economic Research.

Based on an estimated average valuation of $141,068, Thibeault says that the new development would add about $29 million in property value to the tax rolls, and Allenstown could expect a net increase of about $500,000 in new tax revenues once all the homes are built.

MultiAcreMHExpansionApprovedResidentsConcernedcreditConcordMonitor2-postedtothedailybusinessnewsmhpronewsmhlivingnews

The entrance to Holiday Acres. Credit: Concord Monitor.

Thibeault’s analysis also projected about $1 million in revenues from one-time sewer and water hookup fees.

Mark Fougere, of Fougere Planning & Development Inc., in an analysis submitted to town officials, thought that the revenue number could be even higher.

The estimated positive fiscal impact of $513,000 outlined on page 29 is, again, very conservative and we would expect actual positive revenues to the community to be higher than this finding,” said Fougere.

Even with the positive report, many residents who were at the meeting this week have expressed concerns that the development will burden the town’s services and contribute little in terms of revenue.

And, the issue of just how many students the development might bring made for some strong responses, including one from a unique source.

 

NIMBY Strikes Again?

MultiAcreMHExpansionApprovedResidentsConcernedcreditGoogle-postedtothedailybusinessnewsmhpronewsmhlivingnews

Allestown, NH (shaded in red.) Credit: Google.

Our schools are currently struggling to financially meet the needs of the existing student population. They are not prepared to accommodate a large influx of additional students. School taxes will increase as a result,” said Kathleen Pelissier, the town’s clerk and tax collector, in a letter sent to certain residents urging them to contact the select board before the vote.

I hope I’m wrong. But only time will tell.

Pelissier’s letter also said that manufactured homes depreciate quickly in value, and she worried many property owners in the planned age-restricted development might apply for exemptions on their taxes based on age and income.

As a part of the sale, the Hynes Group agreed to upgrade the area around the new development, including installing a sidewalk along the turnpike to the entrance of the new development.

For more on cases of NIMBY (Not-In-My-Back-Yard), including a recent case in Glendale, Arizona, click here. ##

 

(Image credits are as shown above.)

 

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RC Williams, for Daily Business News, MHProNews.

Submitted by RC Williams to the Daily Business News for MHProNews.

MHC Residents Triumph With Co-Op and Purchase

February 6th, 2017 Comments off
MHCResidentsTriumphWithCoOpandPurchasecreditCoOperativeNews-postedtothedailybusinessnewsmhpronewsmhlivingnews

The Polly Ann Park community. Credit: Co-Operative News.

For manufactured home community residents in Dover Point, New Hampshire, Christmas came early.

According to Co-Operative News, those residents created the Dover Point Cooperative, elected a board, and engaged the Resident Owned Communities team (ROC) at the New Hampshire Community Loan Fund (NHCLF) to guide them through the $3.125 million purchase of Polly Ann Park.

 

The co-op signed the deal for the community right before Christmas, and became owners.

The journey began last February when Polly Ann Park residents received a letter from the owners at the time, Frank and Ann Torr.

The couple wanted to sell the community. And they were very keen on the residents buying it.

As Daily Business News readers are aware, New Hampshire laws on manufactured home communities are some of the strictest in the nation, and require residents be given the first opportunity to buy.

MHCResidentsTriumphWithCoOpandPurchasecreditGoogle-postedtothedailybusinessnewsmhpronewsmhlivingnews

The location of Polly Ann Park in Dover, New Hampshire, marked with red indicator. Credit: Google.

With the Torrs’ wanting the community to go to the residents, they approached NHCLF about making the sale to the residents before telling the residents.

We can’t thank Frank and Ann Torr enough for coming to us about buying the park [sic],” said Steve Sheehan, community resident and the first president of the co-op’s charter board.

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Credit: New England Real Estate Journal.

When we started this process, my wife and I told everyone we would have a cookout when we had a signed purchase and sales agreement.

Sheehan also shared that the process of getting to the point of ownership was challenging, yet rewarding.

This was a nine-month process with a lot of ups and downs,” said Sheehan.

Knowing that our future is secure is a great feeling. Once we renovate the garage into our meeting hall, we are going to have another celebration for the community.

With the standards set by New Hampshire, the state encourages these transitions, which are becoming the rule as opposed to the exception: 120 other manufactured home communities have converted from private ownership to a member-owned co-op, which represents 22 percent of the total communities in the state.

For Steve Sheehan, and the residents at Polly Ann Park, they are grateful for what the state, and others have done.

I know I can speak for everyone on the board in saying we couldn’t thank ROC and the Community Loan Fund enough for all their work and guidance throughout this process. We couldn’t have done this without them,” said Sheehan.

For more on New Hampshire resident owned communities, including the case of Lakemont Cooperative-owned Briarcrest Estates potential sale to Hometown America, click here. ##

(Image credits are as shown above.)

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RC Williams, for Daily Business News, MHProNews.

Submitted by RC Williams to the Daily Business News for MHProNews.

Paul Bradley – Mom and I Believe in Manufactured Homes!

December 15th, 2016 Comments off

MomIBelieveManufacturedHomesLoisBradleyMHLivingNewsMHProNews-660x330Perhaps no statement of support for modern manufactured housing is stronger than when someone connected with the industry buys a home for themselves, or their beloved family members.

That’s the ‘heart’ of the story behind Paul Bradley, ROC USA president, purchasing a manufactured home for his mother, Lois Bradley.

Bradley tells that story in his own words, complete with a photo spread, at this link here. ##

(Collage Image Credits: MHLivingNews, ROC USA and Marlette by Clayton Homes.)

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Soheyla Kovach.

Submitted by Soheyla Kovach to the Daily Business News on MHProNews.com.

Modular Tiny Home, 196 sq. ft., has All the Amenities

June 20th, 2016 Comments off

Tiny_Home_sanford_maine_tech_school_tammy_wells_journaltribue__creditWhen first-grade teacher Deirdre Brackett of Sanford, New Hampshire retires she will move into a 196 sq. ft. tiny home she contracted with Sanford Regional Technical School in Sanford, Maine for the students to build the modular home, as journaltribune tells MHProNews. An average hotel room is 325 sq. ft.

Nearly completed for its eventual siting in New Market, NH, the home will have an apartment-sized stove and small refrigerator, cupboards, sink and wall-mounted drop leaf table. A sliding door leads to a bathroom, the bed doubles as a couch, and stairs lead up to a loft where her grandchildren can sleep when they visit.

The home will have a heat pump for heating and cooling and an air exchange system to keep the air fresh. Brackett said she has under $25,000 invested in the tiny home, not including the land.

Sanford is in the very southern tip of Maine, near the NH border. ##

(Photo credit: journaltribune/Tammy Wells–Standing in front of the tiny home are instructor Troy Hathaway, Brackett, and students Teddy Vrandenburg and Tony Parent. Another student who worked on the home, Mike Mackie, is not pictured.)

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

Manufactured Housing Co-operative Member Honored for Outstanding Community Service

May 13th, 2016 Comments off

new_hampshire__fosters_slash_kate_harris_photography__above_and_beyond_award_roc_nhRick Cantu, of Emerald Acres Cooperative, one of 119 resident-owned manufactured home communities in New Hampshire, was honored by ROC-NH’s (resident-owned communities-New Hampshire) Co-ops Celebrating Community for his outstanding volunteer work in his community, receiving the Above and Beyond award.

He was nominated by his neighbors, one of whom wrote: “Rick is a certified Well Operator that volunteers his time to help manage our Co-Op’s water system. He ensures the Co-Op is complaint by taking the time to handle all required paperwork for the state as well as personally going door to door to hand out water compliance paperwork.”

As fosters informs MHProNews, Emerald Acres in Barrington, NH converted to resident ownership in 2006. ROC-NHs’ Above and Beyond Award honors residents of New Hampshire’s manufactured home co-operatives who go above and beyond in assisting the operations of their communities. ##

(Photo credit: fosters/Kate Harris Photography–Nick Cantu receives the award from Tara Reardon, ROC-NH director.)

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

Another New Hampshire Manufactured Home Community becomes Resident-owned

April 16th, 2016 Comments off

new_hampshire__ward_s_park_roc__jason_moon_nhpr__creditThe 15 home site manufactured home community, Ward’s Park, in Portsmouth, New Hampshire is the most recent manufactured home community (MHC) in the state to become a resident-owned community, as nhpr.org tells MHProNews.

New Hampshire is one of a handful of states with a right-to-purchase law that gives residents of an MHC 60 days to match the offer on a community when the owner chooses to sell. This does not obligate the owner to sell to the residents, but the law requires the offer to be made.

With the help of the New Hampshire Community Loan Fund (NHCLF), the residents have now organized into the Woodbury Cooperative, and as Jo Ann Paradis, the vice president said, “We had to set up committees; we had to contact snow-removal companies, trash removal companies; we had to have all these engineers come in and test the ground – we were busy.”

Noting that two months is not a long time for low income folks to raise funds to purchase an MHC, NHCLF’s Tara Reardon said resident-owned communities are New Hampshire’s answer to a lack of affordable housing. “The average price for a manufactured house in the state of New Hampshire is $60,000,” says Reardon. “And the average price for a stick-built house is $270,000.”

The rent for each home site had been $240 a month, but now with ownership they would each have a mortgage payment of $550 a month. The residents point out that a two-bedroom apartment in Portsmouth is $1300/month. Moreover, it is better than moving.

Since 1984 the NHCLF has assisted 119 MHCs become resident-owned, and five more are currently in the wings. ##

(Photo credit: NHPR/Jason Moon–Woodbury Cooperative, formerly Ward’s Park)

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

Another Manufactured Home Community in New Hampshire Converts to Resident-Owned

March 8th, 2016 Comments off

roc_usa__creditThe 32-homesite Ladd Hill Mobile Home Park just became the 118th manufactured home community (MHC) in New Hampshire to convert from privately owned to resident-owned, as citizen informs MHProNews. Now called Ladd Hill Cooperative, Inc., the Belmont, NH community deal was finalized March 1, and the purchase price of $525,000 was financed with a mortgage through the New Hampshire Community Loan Fund’s ROC-NH™ program.

When residents Everett and Pat Palmer heard their community was to be sold and they might lose their home, they contacted the Community Loan Fund (CLF) and started the ball rolling toward the resident-owned community (roc) Ladd Hill has become.

In addition to finding funding, CLF provides advice on leadership, structure of the organization and training to operate the community. The fund assisted homeowners convert the first community in Meredith, NH in 1984, and since then has helped 118 communities become resident-owned comprising more then 6,500 homes.

Everett Palmer said: “It’s a relief to know we own the community, and that our investment and all that we’ve worked for is protected. This whole process has brought our park together. We’ve become closer to our neighbors, and met the ones we didn’t know.” ##