Numbers guys - please advise.

I have been thinking on the topic of a proactive approach to preparing for resales within my MHP. I am in an area in which good used mobile homes will sell, and be relocated to private land, or other MHP


Please clarify. If you are holding the notes, why would you need reserves? You already “own” most of the home unless they are close to having it paid for, don’t you? In this climate, it seems like you would just be buying the homes that emptied where you did not hold the note, and paying your end buyer a small amount of money (maybe) for their equity.

I think Anne would be a great person to answer this question - she owns a ton of homes sold on notes!

Another question - how are you keeping your costs at $15,000 including sheds? Our costs have been creeping up over the last few years. In 2006 and 2007 $15,000 was a legitimate number for us, now it is closer to $17,000 due to increased costs for transporting and rehab materials. We do not require sheds.

Ellen, I adopted the business model of offering in-house financing about November 2007, at that point I had 24 park owned homes (rentals) 38 resident owned homes. Currently, I hold 12 rental homes, 1 inventory units ready to go for sale, 1 being readied for sale, 1 home used as office, 56 resident owned homes

I should have looked here first as I put up a long post on Creo. I can’t believe the prices you guys are paying but I know lots of people pay these prices. But then again, I buy mostly 80’s and 90’s SWs. I haven’t moved one in over a year due to the increased costs. .



We have been buying homes no older than 1998, some as new as 2007. We typically pay $8,500-$10,500 for a 16x80 from Greentree. We did recently buy a 1996 from a private owner on a tip from one of our mobile home friends in Montgomery at $10,500 but it was vinyl/shingle and in great condition. We sold it the day it hit the park, pre-rehab. It needed an outside unit and other small items, but we had huge issues with the transport of it - the toter got stuck, called a tow truck which got stuck and ended up with a bulldozer getting all out. THAT was an expensive move!

We sell our homes for $22,500-$24,500, and are bringing in singles exclusively. Our clientele can afford a combined payment of about $575 monthly, which we split between the 1st and 15th. Lot rent is due the 1st, house payment the 15th. We are replacing living room and hall carpets and kitchen vinyl with laminate when necessary. (That is huge when you get one back!)

We have been exceedingly busy for the last 6 months. We have not had homes ready fast enough! We only have 17 more to bring into the park and every lot will be full. We have about enough left on our Clayton line of credit for 7 of those. We mix borrowed IRA funds in as well, which will hopefully buy the other 10 that we need! All the IRA funds that we use are from people we have met and formed relationships with at mobile home functions.

Things are not all rosy, however. We are currently in the process of evicting three tenants. One we “worked with” and ended up giving us a rubber check. We are now formally evicting her as well as handing the check over to the D.A. Hindsight is great: we should have stopped her nonsense months ago. This home is more than likely getting trashed as we wait for the eviction to happen, which is very slow in Alabama.

We are also booting two other tenants who have moved in between December and February. They have some sort of problem between them and both currently have lodged complaints against the other for beating each other (and their children!) at some other place than our community. They obviously don’t belong living here! In the last two days the police have come and arrested them all for this incident. It has to be real, who could make this up? LOL.

Contrary to other people’s experience that post regularly, we have not had the greatest luck with people on SSI. They do have a regular income, however they like the champagne on their beer budgets! Our manager turned down one applicant, who was pregnant, because she asked her as she and her boyfriend were looking at homes how long it would be before she found out if her baby would get a check! Very, very sad. Our manager was livid - her daughter is deaf. As she told me, she would rather have a healthy child than get the SSI check she receives every month for her child.

Jim and I are planning to meet up with old friends at MOM in May!


I’m not sure what you are asking, but we do get lots of people who call about buying my homes to take away and put on their lots. We don’t sell to those buyers, and I’m up front that I won’t allow a financed buyer to move the home til it’s paid off.

We buy homes aged 20 to 3 years from lenders and also directly from sellers from $1000 to $10,000 usually- that’s both singlewides and doublewides. Moving, set-up and holding costs are around $4-$8K. We sell our doublewides for $24.9K to $38.9K, depending on size. We’ve been putting in laminate and that has really turned out to be an excellent choice, now that I’m getting them back.

I have one really nice doublewide that I’ve sold for a third time in 18 months. Nice house, I’m just re-doing the master bath because it was ugly to start with (paint, new linoleum, ,new shower). It has laminate in the living/dining room and it still looks great. Sold it last week $2K down, and $690/month includes lot rent and tax escrow. Price is $31,900. I had to put in all new appliances since the previous buyer stole them in the middle of the night. I have about $20K in this home right now.

Our notes are usually 8 to 15 years in length. About half of them have stayed in the last 4 years, others just keep turning over.

I don’t keep a fund to buy homes, I borrow funds from other people’s IRAs or cash accounts and use them to buy houses in the park, and am going to be buying some new homes to fit into hard-to-fit lots (we charge more for doublewide lot rent, and we have a few small but wide lots, for which we rarely see the right sized repo). Right now I’m paying investors 10-11.5% for secured loans with personal guarantee.

We will pay top dollar to someone to keep a nice-looking home in the park- its worth it not to have the vacant lot and the trouble of bringing in a new home. Like $15K for a singlewide, but that’s from a park-owner perspective, rather than a Lonnie dealer.

I hope this helps.


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