Down at the stadium they’re waiting for the end of the age


• The residents of Meadowbrook Trailer Park in Richmond, Maine, are looking to buy the land beneath their homes. By forming a cooperative to purchase and manage the land, they would ensure their future stability, build equity in the homes they own, and take responsibility by taking charge of their own community. The 200+ residents of the Mission Trails Mobile Home Park in San Antonio, Texas, may not have that option. The owner of the land beneath their homes plans to sell that land, … [Read more...]

7 things @ 2 o’clock (8.22)


1. The Lakeport (Calif.) City Council is studying new rules to protect seniors from the semi-feudal dilemma of owning their homes but not the land beneath them. Since there's no effective market mechanism to limit exploitative rent increases on that land -- they can't easily move their not-mobile "mobile homes" -- the second-best solution is to provide some kind of legislative protection from unreasonable rent increases. The best solution to this problem looks like this: We own it, we manage … [Read more...]

Scenes from the class war

"Dives in Hell and Lazarus in Heaven" (1510)

"It's not fair." "I can't believe they're doing this to older people." "So how do these families survive?" "The study, by the Rand corporation, looks at the 14 states that have said they will opt out of the new Medicaid funds. It finds that the result will be they get $8.4 billion less in federal funding, have to spend an extra $1 billion in uncompensated care, and end up with about 3.6 million fewer insured residents." "I wonder whether even Republicans really believe that story … [Read more...]

Social Security benefits should be going up, not the land-rent for seniors

*Jun 11 - 00:05*

Here's yet another manufactured housing community getting royally screwed, "East Allen Township (Pa.) mobile home owners seeking protection from raising rents." Residents of the Greenbriar Village development say owner Equity LifeStyle Properties has been unjustly increasing their land rents, and there’s nothing they can do about it. Equity is the largest manufactured home community company in the United States and in some cases has increased land rents more than 100 percent in a year, … [Read more...]

A positive, but partial, step for manufactured homes in Pennsylvania

In 2006, 50 families were displaced when the land beneath their homes was sold. Six years later, the lot sits empty. (Express-Times photograph)

Beginning in December, a new Pennsylvania law: … Requires manufactured home community owners to inform residents within 60 days of any decision to close; gives them at least six months, not 30 days, to leave once the closure notice is given; pays them up to $4,000 in relocation expenses for a single home and $6,000 for a multi-section one; and pays at least $2,500 or the home’s appraised value, whichever is greater, for those unwilling or unable to relocate. Jim Deegan of The Express-Times … [Read more...]

Same American story, this time in Wisconsin

A 2007 photo from the Wisconsin State Journal shows homes in the former Monona neighborhood. That neighborhood, those homes, and the families who lived in them, are all gone now.

Chris Rickert of the Wisconsin State Journal reports on the "unpleasant" history of the Hickory Lane Mobile Home park in Monona. The five-acre site is set to become home to luxury apartments where residents will benefit from $2.15 million in city-funded improvements such as underground parking and boat slips on the Yahara River. The story of what it used to be, Rickert says, is "worth remembering": Back in 2005, the mobile home park's owners, Mansel and Dottie Johns, decided to get out of … [Read more...]

The state of the American Dream in Stonegate and Sunset Village

Here's a story from the Chisago County Press. That's Chisago County, Minnesota -- north of the Twin Cities and south of Duluth. The county is home to about 54,000 people, including the 50 households of a neighborhood called Stonegate in Lindstrom, Minn. The Press' Denise Martin tells us about those families and their impressive battle for independence, "Mobile home park residents take rare action in purchasing their neighborhood": There are as many types of people who call Stonegate home … [Read more...]

WWGBD? In a political war over trailer parks, nobody wins


I've written a lot here about trailer parks. That's the common, somewhat derogatory, term for manufactured housing communities in which residents own their houses, but not the land beneath them. The problem with mobile homes is that they're not really mobile. They're anchored to a particular site, and detaching them to transport them elsewhere is extremely expensive and, in many cases, impossible. That means the regular rules of the market do not apply -- there can be no competition to … [Read more...]