Selling Your Mobilehome?

FORM 770 REV 12/2019

When You Sell Your Home…

GSMOL would like you to know a few things that will be important to you when you sell your mobile/manufactured home. You can also do a favor for your fellow MH park residents who are selling their homes if you pass this information on to them.

If you live in an area where there is a Space Rent Stabilization Ordinance (also known as “rent control”), the next person to own your home needs to know that they must ask for a “month to month” or “twelve month” rental agreement in order to stay under the protection of the ordinance. If the buyer of your home signs a long-term lease (more than twelve months) their space will be REMOVED from rent stabilization and their rent will be raised according to the terms of the long-term lease.

Although the Mobilehome Residency Law (MRL) says that a resident of a mobile/manufactured home park can NOT be required to sign a long-term lease, this law does not apply to prospective buyers of homes. The only way your buyer will know not to sign a long-term lease is if someone tells them – you, or your Realtor.

Also, you should know that Governor Newsom signed a bill that GSMOL supported, SB 274 by Senator Bill Dodd, which will become law on January 1, 2020. One part of this bill says that if you have a buyer who is being rejected because their income doesn’t qualify them to live in the park, the buyer can now submit other proofs of ability to pay rent, such as other financial assets they own, if they should wish to do so.

Finally, just a word to the wise: if the park offers to buy your home, consider carefully what could happen as a result. When the park owns both the home and the space, that space is removed from rent stabilization. Should the park rent the home out, the tenant may be charged double or even triple the typical rent for the park, since they are paying for both a home and a space. Or if it is an older home, the park may pull it out, replace it with a new home, and sell it to a new resident.

Although the new resident can ask for a month-to-month rental agreement and be under the protection of the rent stabilization ordinance, the park owner is allowed to start them out at a much higher rent than the previous owner was paying because they (the park) were temporarily in possession of the home. Or the park can require them to sign a long-term lease, and then they won’t even have rent stabilization. There is nothing illegal about any of these practices, but it is NOT “affordable housing” as mobile/manufactured homes are intended to be. So, if your area has rent stabilization, selling your home to the park should be the very last resort.

If you have questions on these subjects, please contact your nearest GSMOL leader. Find their information in The Californian magazine or call the Home Office at 800-888-1727.