Last nights conference call

If I understood correctly. The future of filling present MHP’s is going to rest on the owners of these communities.

I am new to the business of MHP’s. I have bought and sold a couple of homes about 3 years ago, deals when well. I knew from the past that dealers apparently had a relationship with MHP’s that was of mutual beneifit to both.

I only know the backgrounds of a few people on this forum, those I believe started in the business as Lonnie dealers and have gotten into park ownership. Having said that, is the mindset of the park owners that they are

going to take care of all financing needs in the parks as home owners want to buy or sell their home? If a home gets too old, is it going to just be banded from the park?

I have a reason for my questions. I am really trying to understand the climate of this business, it doesn’t seem to be the same business it was 5 -7 years ago! I think everyone knows that fact.

I have have been told by two big park owners this week that they will not allow anyone other than them to buying or selling homes in their parks.

These parks have many empty lots and other homes for sale by owners.

I was contacted by telephone by the president of one of these parks that owns about 6 or more parks this two state area, that I could do no business at all! I had contacted one of the park managers about buying a home from someone that had it for sale. (normal Lonnie sop)

I didn’t take issue with this owner, just told him fine, I always check up front before doing a deal.

I didn’t like his tone and really am puzzled by what I view as short sited view on his part, he has many open lots and I had no plan to move the home.

Sorry to be so long, can someone clear this picture for me.

I know the first answer, just move on to the next park. Well I don’t buy that answer, there seems to be a mindset in the parks I have visited that it’s my playground and you can’t play.

The park manager’s are not the decision maker, they are ruled by someone in another state seems to be a trend.

My big question is what is the future for the small investor?

Buy your own playground or invest somewhere else, besides MH’s.

Les (IN)


I’ll give you my opinion free of charge. I’ve recently bought 4 parks. Two of the parks are Lot rent only and the other 2 are park owned homes for rent.

I love the Lot rent only parks (as long as they are owner occupied). I live out of state and there is very LOW maintenance on the dirt and its easily manageble. The down side… you make less money. The biggest upside… NO MAINTENANCE work on homes. We are looking at doing lonnie deals at these parks, but in the mean time they are slowly filling up on their own.

The 2 parks with park owned homes are cash cows, but time and money sucking aliens. We are seriously looking at converting one of these parks to no park owned homes. Either by selling the homes there currently or by just junking them and moving new ones in. We can finance the conversion with the other cash cow park… It won’t happen over night, but we are going to work towards that direction.

It will be an interesting year as we are kinda learning as we go along.

Good luck.


Great comments and questions about the Clayton Bank & Trust teleseminar and the industry in general.

It’s no secret that the MHP business has been very brutal in the past 5 or 6 years to the single park owner who didn’t or couldn’t provide their own inventory of homes to sell via owner financing.

Chattel financing has dried up and the only way a park owner is going to fill up a park or even keep it stable is to become a “retail outlet” OR allow someone else to fill this need…the Lonnie dealer.

Will this change?

Short term…not likely. There are a few national lenders looking at a smart way to get back into the chattel lending business. However, as long as mortgage rates stay low there is simply no way for them to make money in the manufactured home lending business.

Long term…most likely. This business is just like any other real estate class, it’s cyclical. We are in a down cycle, no doubt about it. But, if you listen to Jim Clayton and other “icons” of the industry, things will change. There will always be a need for affordable housing in this country. There will be a national lender or two who will eventually get back into the lending business on a grand scale and do things right this time. When this happens, those of us who have good properties will reap rewards like many have never seen. Think about the supply/demand relationship. How many new parks have been built in the past three years? Very few. As sales pick up, dealers will be placing a premium on lots in good parks because they will need them to complete the sale. I want to be that park owner and smile all the way to the bank as my lots become more valuable.

As you can tell, I’m very positive about the future of mobile home investing. It’s just like any other real estate investment class…if you can buy properties in a down market and make them profitable, just think of the value you have created when the market heats up and everybody wants to get into the game. We are seeing that with single-family homes right now.

The other issue you asked about concerned the future for “Lonnie dealers” in this business. We do allow people to buy/sell homes in our parks. However, we don’t allow just anyone to do this. If the person is honest, reputable, and truly cares about the park…they are in. We still control who actually buys the home and rents the lot, but we work with the Lonnie dealer so he/she can make money in the business. It’s all about relationship and trust.

Why don’t you personally visit the owners of the parks mentioned above? Explain how you can work with them and help them fill their park…have a well thought out plan that will be mutually beneficial. This works, I’ve done it before after being refused by people.

I hope this helps.



My personal favorite is a pure land-leased park because of the reasons you mentioned. I think it is awesome that someone else (retail dealers/Lonnie dealers) is filling your lots. That is very rare unless you have a 5 or 4 star property.

In most cases, we have to fill the park ourselves with homes that we eventually sell and carry financing. As a rule, we don’t rent homes. The maintenance, turnover, and community deterioration aren’t worth the hassles.

Let us know how things pan out.



You can contact Steve Waite at 720-339-4942. He is the point of contact for the Clayton Bank and Trust financing program.