Gauging market to fill vacant homes

Assessing market for a park in the midwest. Good area metrics,
Metro is 600,000. SFR Homes for the metro are averaging $108k, Other parks rents are $100 higher. Apartments/homes rent $700-950/mo.

But— in the specific neighborhood where the park is located they are generally very low $25-50k and rents lower ($550-700).

Park is Over 250 lots, 100 lots owner occupied, 80 vacant homes. Current lot rent $300/mo. w/s billed back.

Question is: can I fill these homes?

This will be our first park.

Thanks in advance.

Stick a tickler ad in craigslist and in facebook marketplace for each of these things -
1 ad that is vague with park location, just the city, just that you have vacant spots to fill and you’ll give them like, 2 months free rent, see what you get. (build a list with it)
1 ad that says the basics of the homes you are trying to fill that are vacant, ( like … we have 2, 3, and 4 bedroom homes for sale/rent @ prices from this to this) and post in both locations again, - see what you get.

Are the vacant homes in the park you are looking at livable or are they tear downs? or Handyman specials? Are you wanting to rent them or move them off or sell them? Are you willing to carry the paper?

What are the bonuses to living in that park? Is there a clubhouse, a pool, things for the neighborhood kids to do besides break into houses and steal cars? etc.

The park I take care of is in the basically worst part of town and I have a wait list because inside my park, its clean, quiet, friendly, and people take care of their stuff. The money in the neighborhood is not as important as the quality of tenants that can be created with management that is firm and fair and educates the tenants on their responsibilities. If the park looks bad and you can immediately improve it with paint and good staff and landscaping, people will flock to you to get in there. Even if the homes are in poor shape. Even in the poorest part of town.

Run the ads (they are free to run in my market, hope the same there) in different formats over the weekend, you’ll get the most hits between Friday and Monday morning to get a sliver of the market.

What it sounds like is the park is in need of strong healthy trained staff to make it full again. But I bet you, it could be filled up within about 18 months with good looking homes and tenants that want to be there if conditions are right, coming from the management/staff side. :slight_smile:

oh, one thing to take into consideration, why are there so many vacant units? were they rentals or did something break underground - water/sewer/power lines damaged - super important infrastructure questions to ask about so you aren’t out $50K+ in repairs straight out of the gate.

… lemmie know what happens :slight_smile: hope this helps.


Thanks BarbraM. Good insight. Ran just Clist for 5 days and had 25 unique responses. Unfortunately the park went under contract. Should have tied up and then ran market.

Good call. But glad you tested it :slight_smile:

@MKProperties , as per your post:

  • “…Park is over 250 lots, 100 lots owner occupied, 80 vacant homes…”
  • “…This will be our first park…”

Also, per your recent post:

  • “…Unfortunately the park went under contract…”

As a MHP Owner (one being a Turn-around…but smaller…65 Total Lots) 80 vacant homes is “A LOT” of work in general (we had 11 vacant & condemned mobile homes along with 7 rented POHs).

However, for a first time MHP Owner 80 vacant homes could be over-whelming.

Just a couple of questions to consider for future potential MHP purchases:

  • Why were there so many vacant homes (80 vacant homes in this scenario)?
  • Why were the vacant homes not rented or sold?

We wish you the very best!

1 Like

@Kristin Yes 80 is a lot of homes. If the demand to fill them is there it seems that “in-place” homes can be more cost effective yet may demand a longer time period. I think they were TOH as all are that now. As to why so many I did not get close enough to get any good answers to that. But, as @BarbraM eluded in her post there is a large unfound water leak that likely has effected residences. Why they cannot find it is unclear to me as they have had leak detection companies come and still are unable to find. This has been over 24 months of really excessive usage. Seems to me the present owners are being taken and a new owner would need to hire someone who knows what they are doing and demand it be found or no pay.

Is it uncommon to not find a leak this large? ($10,000-12,000/ mo for 100 homes).