Found a home to buy and move... but the park says I can't


#1

I’m looking for homes to purchase and move into my park. I found one on Craigslist but the seller says the landlord said it cannot be moved out of the park.

The sellers signed a contract that reads:
The sale of this home has been deeply discounted with the expectation that the home is staying in the park for at least 5 years. Purchaser agrees to leave home in park for a minimum of 5 years from date of contract. If the home is moved prior to the expiration of the 5 year period then the price is an additional $5,000. This amount is to be paid prior to the home being moved.

Do any of you do this or run in to this? Is there anything I can do or what would you do?

I want to be ethical in business but I also want to fill my park. I also understood WI law to contradict this practice.


#2

Your question is a legal question that I don’t know the answer to and an attorney would be best suited for.

My high and mighty two cents - I’d just pass on the home. There are other homes out there, and this is a small industry. Poaching a home from a park that clearly wants to keep it could end up fine, or could end up hurting you in unforeseen ways down the road.

When I buy a home I contact the park and ask if they want to buy it back before I move it, and I’ve been surprised how many don’t care about me moving the home out for one reason or another (usually the manager is just lazy/sloppy).


#3

Who currently has title? Legally the seller (to you) may be able to wiggle free from the deal they cut with the landlord because of state law, but in practice I’m sympathetic to fulfilling the contract terms in favor of the landlord. We put a similar condition on homes we sell. Lease is for 5 years or until financing is paid off.


#4

After you start bringing in homes and spending the money to fix them up, you will want a similar agreement in place as current park owner.

In a case that a buyer pays for the home and then finds this out would be best handled by offering the home back to current park owner for what you paid for it if you bought it right and then adding that point to your due diligence checklist.

Good luck
Ken Lavoie


#5

if you have the title and the park hasnt put liens on it and its signed by the person selling it.
the park cannot hold the home, they can start a lawsuit against the tenant in contract but for them to hold the home is illegal conversion. the local police will not stop the home from leaving either.


#6

I agree with everyone else who has commented. You don’t want owners poaching homes out of your park so consider giving them the benefit of the doubt and pass on the home.


#7

By this argument you cannot come take the home until you pay the prior owners debt to the landlord and you would have to trespass to do it. The landlord would have a criminal case against you as well as several other causes of action. On the other hand, it’s hard (and pointless) to chase you once the home has left. So you can run in (with your licensed and insured mover) and scoop the home up if you think you’ll get away with it.


#8

Look at you Dept of Business and Financial regs to see if it is valid.


#9

@Brandon im a transporter as well as a park owner, so i know what im saying to be 100% fact as ive moved 100’s of homes out of parks out of the midwest, the parks need to always go after the tenant in contract not the new buyers. what your implying is felony or misdemeanor conversion and you’re managers will go to jail.


#10

What can I say, I think you’re wrong legally and morally. In practice, you’ll get away with it. See you in court!


#13

Thanks for the input guys! @Brandon, seeing your responses around the other posts I’ve come to respect your opinion so thanks for weighing in. Good to hear your side as well @aaronstarr. I decided to pass on this one, mostly due to the Golden Rule, due onto others as you would have them do onto you. But that’s just me.


#14

I asked the same question here years ago when I bought my park… homes leave and you do get people moving homes. Golden rule always stays though…


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