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Government Officials Investigate “Mobile Home Evictions,” CBS News Video, Manufactured Housing Report, Analysis

January 24th, 2019 Comments off

GovernmentOfficialsInvestigateMobileHomeEvictionsCBSNewsVideoManufacturedHousingReportAnalysisDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

I hope the city of San Jose will opt to protect vulnerable mobilehome park residents from preemptive evictions and not submit to the devious and greedy manipulations of the park owner. I live in San Juan Capistrano and our strong supportive city council opted to protect their MH residents (on a different issue, but relating to abuses of MH residents by Park owners). SJC City Council is a strong example of doing what is right to protect their residents and to preserve affordable housing,” said Carol Brinkman.

 

The city of San Jose is closely monitoring mobile home evictions after complaints came from residents saying they are getting pushed out for minor infractions,” said KPIX 5 out of San Jose, California.

Last summer, Karen Carpenter reportedly received an eviction notice from the Winchester Ranch manufactured home community (MHC) where she has lived for six years. The reasons cited by management?

Minor clutter, some old paint cans and some weeds,” Carpenter said.

 

Carpenter told the CBS News affiliate that she was ill last summer and didn’t get outside to work during her first “seven day notice.” But she pointed out in the video report to KPIX 5 where those items were, in her back yard, masked from the street.

I just can’t believe that I’m going to be possibly evicted over some weeds and old paint cans,” said Carpenter.

The community manager’s did not comment for the CBS affiliate’s mainstream media (MSM) report. But it was noted that Winchester Ranch is in the process of redeveloping into a large apartment complex, which will have “nearly 700 units.”

To Carpenter, her eviction notice for a relatively minor infraction is not a coincidence.

They are going to be developing the park, and the first phase is right where I am sitting. That’s my only guess as to why they are singling me out,” she said.

Carpenter hired an attorney and is fighting eviction.  The issue is getting attention at San Jose City Hall. In December 2018, the Housing Commission reportedly wrote a memo to the mayor Sam Liccardo and City Council, warning of possible preemptive evictions for minor infractions at mobile home parks in San Jose.

The memo stated there could be attempts to avoid provisions of the city’s MHC conversion ordinance, “which guarantees mobile home residents extra time, monetary compensation and other benefits if a park converts to another use,” said KPIX 5.

Carpenter doesn’t have a mobile home, based upon the visual evidence, it is a manufactured home.  But doesn’t episodes like this feed into negative stereotypes that are arguably harming residents and most industry professionals alike, not just in San Jose, but nationally?

The city’s investigation memo noted that the land San Jose manufactured home communities are built on have “become so valuable that it creates an incentive for park owners to convert the property into other more profitable uses.”  This is among the reasons that the Manufactured Housing Association for Regulatory Reform (MHARR) has argued for a robust application of existing laws, such as enhanced preemption made law under the Manufactured Housing Improvement Act of 2000.

It is also why MHARR – an independent producers association – has encouraged the creation of new post-production associations, so that new structures can advocate for what the Manufactured Housing Institute and their allies apparently won’t.

 

City Officials Vows to Monitor, Investigate

We are going to monitor any housing issue that is brought to our attention,” said Rachel VanderVeen, Deputy Director of the San Jose Housing Department. Housing officials say they don’t have any active cases of abuse of the mobile home conversion ordinance at this time.

Manufactured home industry professionals should understand that just as associations and industry firms may share cross talk, so too do public officials. So an event in San Jose should not be considered as an isolated concern.

Meanwhile, Carpenter will have her day in court. “If I lose, I will have to move out within 5 days,” said Carpenter.  The CBS affiliate closed their report by saying, “She doesn’t have firm plans on where to go if that happens and she is afraid of becoming homeless.”  Is that the image of insecurity that will draw potentially millions of prospects to manufactured home communities and retail ceners?

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This episode may not represent the majority of the industry’s independent or corporate owners.  But just as the Millie Francis – Our Lady of Guadalupe art controversy is rocking ROCs, and communities – so too will this story and others like it have ripple effects that will impact not only those who spark the report, but also those who happen to share the same profession.  That’s MH “Industry News, Tips, and Views Pros Can Use” © where “We Provide, You Decide.” ## © (News, analysis, and commentary.)

 

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Huge Loss to Affordable Housing Stock May Be in Offing

June 22nd, 2017 Comments off

(Residents of Green Tree Estates, l-r, Roz Bailey, Annabelle Bentley and Dianna Weys. Credit: Amy Reid, Surrey Now Leader)

Similar to re-purposing pressures in urban areas in the United States, our manufactured housing neighbors north of the border are facing redevelopment issues that threaten to uproot them from long-standing manufactured home communities.

Vancouver, British Columbia is home to approximately 1,000 manufactured home communities, according to the Manufactured Home Park Owners Alliance of BC. Those communities comprise over 60,000 households. As in the U.S., many are occupied by elderly residents on fixed incomes.

Residents of Surrey, BC, just east of Vancouver, last year saw Park Mobile, an MHC across from Surrey Hospital, acquired by WestStone Group, which plans to build a state-of-the-art seniors care facility on the site. The project calls for 400 units of varying levels of care, including offices and a research center.

On two occasions city council delayed the plan, concerned about where the residents would go. However, as of Dec., 2016 the developer had acquired all 47 homes with tenants scheduled to be out by the end of June, 2017.

Surrey Councillor Vera LeFranc told the Now-Leader, “The City of Surrey has done as much as possible with our limited authority, to protect manufactured home owners, and will continue to ensure that developers meet a gold standard whenever residents are displaced,” stressed LeFranc, “but the Province needs to make changes to the Residential Tenancy Branch if there are to be any further protections.”

Surrey, British Columbia. Credit: Google Maps

As MHProNews has reported, the repurposing of MHCs in the U. S. has worried residents, as noted by Georgia’s Manufactured Housing Executive Director Jay Hamilton: “As communities become surrounded and engulfed by restaurants, Hilton Hotels, stadiums, big box stores, airports, residential and commercial developments, property taxes begin exceeding the total revenue from renting spaces.”

Another comment on such cases is linked here. 

On Thursday, June 8, residents of Green Tree Estates MHC in the Fleetwood park area received a letter saying the owner intends to rezone the community and build townhouses, noting “no tenant will have to vacate the property for a minimum of 24 months.” Options from the developer include buying residents’ existing homes plus 25 percent, move their homes to other communities, a payment of 12 months rent plus a guaranteed income of $700 for life.

Light rail (LRT) is planned along the major artery, King George Blvd. where an estimated 1,000 manufactured homes are located. Surrey’s Community Planning Manager Don Luymes predicted many will fall.

As the city grows and transit investments are made along King George, it’s probably inevitable that many of these sites will be redevelopment candidates,” said Luymes.

Under the current Manufactured Home Park Tenancy Act, tenants receive 12 months notice if a site is to be redeveloped, with moving expenses capped at $5,000.

Roz Bailey has lived in the 55 and over Green Tree Estates MHC for ten years loves her ground level home where she can garden and easily visit neighbors. “The government is always, always saying they want seniors to age in place,” said Bailey. “It’s best if you can live safely and independently in a community and you’ve got a lot of informal supports, which are more important than formal ones really. There’s a lot of community here.”                                                                       

(Unrelated home for illustration purposes on King George Blvd. Credit: Google Maps)

Surrey-Newton NDP MLA Harry Bains has advocated on behalf of residents of MHCs since 2006 when developers wanted to build condos on the site of the Seacrest Motel and RV Park inhabited primarily by seniors, some in their 80s. He said, “That really got me thinking that these people, many of them serve our country and build this country and province. These are seniors and these are the last years of their lives and they’re being told to pick up their house and move.”

The plan was rejected in 2007, but in March of this year the developer got his way and the last residents finally moved out.

With light rail planned along King George Blvd. Bains said all the home sites are in danger of development as city hall looks to make the LRT successful.

These are really nice, small, little communities. They look out for each other. We need to preserve these,” he added. “This will be a huge loss to our affordable housing stock.” ##

(Linked here is a related story about rent control in Canada – and the U.S. – that threatens manufactured home communities.

Linked here is a story about the vision that some Canadian leaders have for the future of manufactured homes in their nation.)

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Submitted by Matthew J. Silver to Daily Business News on MHProNews.

Gentrification and Community Closure playing out

December 3rd, 2014 Comments off

texas-mission-hills-mobile-home-park-san-antone-mary-tuma-sacurrent-credit-posted-mhpronews-Gentrification has become a hot topic in many parts of the U.S.. MHProNews   took a look at the issue as it’s playing out for residents in a manufactured home community (MHC) in San Antonio.

New residents coming to downtown are a welcome sight to local businesses. So a planned mixed use development coming to the area is welcome, but it is coming at the cost of the homes for those in a south side MHC that is set to be closed.

Former mayor, Julian Castro – who has since become Secretory for Housing and Urban Development (HUD) – called for a task force of civic leaders and council members to examine the issue of gentrification and how its impact can best be handled. This, mySA says, followed the controversial decision to close a MH Community, which forces the removal of hundreds of families.

Brenda Reyna, says the ExpressNews, spent years several thousands on a three-bedroom home for her son and daughter in the Mission Trails community on the South Side. “This is my neighborhood for many years,” she said in Spanish.

The City Council rezoned the property last May so a $75 million, high-end mixed-use development, that will include 400 apartments.

Part of the plan would call for a guaranteed sum to those displaced. Staffers are looking at how other cities have dealt with similar issues, looking for options. They’re considering low-income housing tax credits (LIHTC), zoning incentives and a bond election to help fund projects, including affordable housing.

For those moving out early, a $2500 incentive was offered by the developer. Nicole Elizalde Henning, an attorney working on behalf of Mission Trails residents, criticized the developer White-Conlee and the seller, American Family Communities.

Economic improvements and answers to how funds are distributed so they “benefit the current residents as well as future residents coming in,” are being reviewed, said Rod Radle, a member of the task force and former executive director of San Antonio Alternative Housing Corp. “I think anyplace where you don’t have a public policy in place that encourages mixed-income development, you will have potential for problems.

Redevelopment using aging manufactured home communities – often referred to as ‘mobile home parks’ – has been taking place for some years in much of the U.S.. Some estimates are that over 5,000 MHCs have closed since 2000 nationally, often in favor of redevelopment for commercial or residential use.

For a prior report earlier into the action leading to the closure of this community, click here. ##

(Photo credit: SA Current)

joseine-josie-thompson-writer-daily-business-news-mhpronews-com50x50-Article submitted by Josie Thompson to – Daily Business News – MHProNews  

200+ site manufactured home community may be sold and redeveloped

October 5th, 2011 Comments off

Gaslight_Village_-_credit_MHVillageLJWorld reports that Gaslight Village Mobile Home Park in Lawrence, KS is under contract to be sold for redevelopment, a decade after the community was split to allow construction of a Best Buy, Home Depot and other commercial development northeast of 31st and Iowa streets. Edwardsville-based Mid-America Manufactured Housing Communities, which owns the manufactured home land lease community, has distributed notification letters to residents of the 148 homes at the park, which has 241 spaces. “The rumors are flying wildly again,” said Tom Horner, corporate secretary for Mid-America. “There is a potential buyer out there that is looking at buying it. We just wanted to be honest with our residents and tell them the truth.” While Horner would not comment on the proposed use, citing a confidentiality agreement, city officials have been contacted by a company that envisions a project “along the lines of a residential use,” said Scott McCullough, the city’s planning director. This may include single family, or multi-unit projects, including townhomes, condos or apartments. Relocation assistance would be provided to existing residents, if the sale and land use goes through. As Gaslight Village’s owners say in their letter to residents: “We will keep you informed as the potential sale progresses during the next several months.”

(Photo credit: MHVillage)