Park without Permit/Zoning

Have park under contract in a (very) small city in Iowa within a good metro. City does not require a permit for the mobile home park so they do not have any on file. When I asked about a “Certificate of Zoning” they didn’t know what I was talking about. Went up a level to county, and county zoning office said they only handle issues in unincorporated areas so this would not apply. Park was created in 1960’s and the city thinks the park is in very good standing with them.

Any suggestions on how I should proceed to protect myself? Is this something I just need to get a signed letter from a city attorney or something similar?

You can draft a letter to the city asking them to confirm that the park is legal conforming or legal non-conforming and ask them to sign it. I would suggest you have an experienced land zoning attorney do it. The Mobile Home Park Lawyer has a podcast that discusses this topic.

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I had a similar situation with my small community in Talladega, AL. Park was in unincorporated Talladega county and didn’t fall under any zoning or regulation of any kind ( :grimacing:). I called the various govt offices that may regulate a MHC and they all said because it’s unincorporated there’s no regulation (rural southern states for the win!). This still made me a little nervous so I ended up paying $800 for a zoning study from that documented all the things I had found and more and made me a nice little packet that I have on hand just in case. The peace of mind is worth the $800 in DD.

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