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7 Shocking Things Mobile Home Owners Need to Know

7 Shocking Things Mobile Home Owners Need to Know

Mobile home owners, we’ve found ways that you can get help and protect yourself from eviction. If you currently own a mobile home, then you don’t want to miss this.

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First of all, I just want to say thank you to everyone who has reached out with questions. Once I dived deep into researching mobile homes, I couldn’t believe the statistics that I found! For example, did you know that 41% of mobile homes are owned or rented by low income seniors? 

I’ve found some very important facts to share with the mobile home owners out there. Here are seven things that you need to know so that you can get the help you need and keep your home. 

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First, you need to know your state laws. 

Not all states treat mobile home owners the same way. In some areas, mobile homes are treated like real estate, or real property. In other areas, mobile homes are treated like personal property. 

This may not sound important, but it makes a big difference. Think about it: a home is usually real estate. Personal property is… like your coat, hat, or suitcase.

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However, according to the site Urban.org, approximately 77% of new manufactured homes are classified as personal property rather than real estate… and that means that those mobile home owners are not eligible for many of the assistance programs that traditional home owners can use.  

For this reason, and many others, you’re better off if you also own the land underneath your mobile home. Nevertheless, I know that many people own their mobile home and rent the lot beneath it. We’ll discuss that in greater detail later in this post.

Second, you may qualify for home repair grants. 

We have found tons of different programs that offer home repair grants to assist with new roofs, heating, water heaters and other needs. These grants can provide thousands of dollars toward the repair and improvement of your mobile home. You can find the full list here. 

Third, you may be able to get free disability modifications. 

Along with home repair grants, we’ve also found many programs that offer free disability modifications to those who need them. This could include ramps or other needs. We’ve listed these providers in the same list as our home repair grants, so you can find that information in this list as well. 

Fourth, you may be able to get help with your utilities. 

Utility expenses can be overwhelming, but you may be eligible for help! LIHEAP is a nationwide program that helps with utility costs. You’ll need to reach out to your utility provider, state agency in charge of social programs or your local Community Action Council for more information on how and when to apply. 

Fifth, you may be able to get rent assistance with your lot rent. 

Many programs that provide assistance with rent will also help mobile home owners with their lot rent. This includes the Emergency Rental Assistance Program that was launched in response to the Coronavirus Pandemic. Not all states are using these funds to help mobile home owners but many are, so it never hurts to reach out to your local agency in charge of these funds and ask if you can get help. 

Sixth, you need to know about the National Manufactured Housing Construction and Safety Standards Act. 

If there are defects in the manufacture of your home, then you need to know about this Act. It requires manufacturers to correct any defects that present an unreasonable risk of injury or death to the home’s occupants, as well as any defects in the design or assembly of the home. 

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In order to help mobile homeowners, 36 states have created administrative agencies that enforce these standards and handle consumer complaints. If you own a mobile home in a state that does not have a specific agency for this, you can take your complaints to the US Department of Housing and Urban Development

mobile home owners learn about these secrets

Seventh, many mobile home owners are losing the homes they own to eviction.

This was one of the most surprising and disturbing things that I learned while I researched this content. I had no idea how at-risk mobile home owners were from eviction… and how desperate some mobile home lot owners are to evict people. 

So here’s the deal: If you own a mobile home and you are paying rent for your lot, you can get evicted from the lot if you don’t pay rent. 

But here’s where it gets complicated. Elizabeth Voight, the director of the nonprofit Manufactured Housing Action, was quoted by NPR as saying, “It costs $5,000-10,000 to hire a company to move your home off the lot that you rent. Older homes structurally can’t handle a move, and it’s very difficult to find a new lot.” 

Because of that, many landlords are increasing lot rent and evicting homeowners that can’t pay. They know that you probably can’t move your home, and they stand to gain a lot if you abandon the home. According to Voight, “The landlord turns around, rents the home or sells it again, adding to their profit margins. The resident has lost not only their home but their life savings.” 

Courts often allow this, because the homeowner can’t move the home. It becomes abandoned property and the owner of the lot can usually take over the title 30 days after the home is abandoned. At that point, they are free to rent it out to someone else. 

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The NPR article I read discussed a woman named Barbara who was evicted when she owed less than $1,200 in back lot rent. She lost the home she had owned and lived in for 16 years as a result of that eviction. 

NBC News also quoted Stuart Campbell, a lawyer form Legal Aid of Northwest Texas, who said, “Oftentimes when they are evicted for lot rent, they’re forfeiting the equity on the home. You could lose your home for $1.” 

Kristin Slonski, a litigation director for the nonprofit law firm Wisconsin Judicare, said that she has seen mobile homeowners selling their homes on Facebook Marketplace for $1,000 in order to avoid a total loss. 

This is heartbreaking and so, so wrong. 

To protect yourself, you need to be aware of all the assistance that is available to mobile home owners… and you need to do everything you can to avoid getting behind on lot rent or giving the landlord an excuse to evict you. Rent assistance programs like the Emergency Rental Assistance Program may be able to help, but be sure to reach out ot other community resources (like your Community Action Council) so that you can understand every benefit available to you in your area. 

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Nicole leads the Low Income Relief team with over 20 years of professional research and writing experience. Nicole started Low Income Relief after a personal experience with poverty. When her husband was medically discharged from the US Army, their family experienced tremendous financial hardship. Nicole was able to gather help from multiple community agencies and move into a nearby low income housing unit in just two weeks! Since then, Nicole has been dedicated to helping low income families in crisis. She regularly spends hundreds of hours combing through countless resources to make sure that Low Income Relief has the most comprehensive and complete resource directories on the internet today. Prior to starting Low Income Relief, Nicole worked as a novelist, journalist, ghostwriter and content creator. Her work has been featured in various print and online publications, including USA Today, eHow, Livestrong, Legal Beagle, The Daily Herald, The Chronicle and more.

Shasta

Monday 30th of May 2022

I've lived in my mobile home since 2006. I wrote a check to pay for it. The day will probably come when I want to leave. I don't know if I could sell my house. Can I just leave the keys on my kitchen table and let the trailer court take it over and do what they want to with my home?

Isaac

Friday 3rd of June 2022

Information on this should be in the article above. Chat with Lira, she might be able to help! https://lowincomerelief.com/chat/

Harold patrick

Thursday 26th of May 2022

Me and my wife are both disabled and don't have the money to do the repairs to park request now they're threatening to evict us what can we do

Isaac

Saturday 28th of May 2022

Information on this should be in the article above. Chat with Lira, she might be able to help! https://lowincomerelief.com/chat/

Diane Privette

Saturday 26th of February 2022

I own my mobile home and one acre of land. Well, the Mortage company and I own it. Many mobile homeowners are financed through one financial organization and then they turn it over to a mortgage servicing company. They are sharks just waiting on one drop of blood before they attack. My mortgage has been sold several times to different mortgage servicing companies. They all end up going out of business for unscrupulous practices. When I call to see who actually owns my loan they can’t tell me or won’t. When you finance your mobile home you’re at the mercy of whoever will finance you. They generally charge more than the going interest rate. I’m at 7.5% and have never been able to refinance at a lower rate. Many mobile home buyers are on the lower end of the pay scale or going through life changes such as divorce, just starting out or retirement. I’m my case it was divorce after 20 years. I had kids and didn’t want to rent. We had to leave a nice home in a nice neighborhood and we were all sad. If you are so much as a couple days late on your payment the mortgage servicing company will start blowing up your phone. I have had some issues with being late in the 22 years I’ve been here. I’ve had a couple times where they gave me an option to tag it onto the end of my loan. The kicker is you have to be two months or more behind for any help. My current servicing company is hard to deal with. If you call for assistance they send out a package of options. There is no such thing as refinancing at a lower interest, they can defer for a couple months but then the full amount is due. You can sell it, you can do a voluntary repossession or wait for them to evict you. Last year I was having a hard time. I’m disabled now but wasn’t when I bought my home. I’ve struggled ever sense I had to go on disability. I asked to defer one payment and tack it on the tail of the loan. That’s when they said I had to be two or more payments behind. They offered the package of “other” ways they could help as mentioned above. They wouldn’t take a partial payment and didn’t care what the reason why I was behind. Anyway, it went into three months because I had to pay it all or nothing. They wouldn’t take part of it. Or even two months of it. Next thing I know I’m getting served foreclosure papers by the Sheriff! All I could do was cry and go deeper in depression. Then I was bombarded with companies who wanted to pay cash for my home. They scour court records everyday to see who has been served. Sure they buy your house as is but you will lose all your equity and might walk away with enough cash to put a deposit down on an apartment if you can find someone who will rent to you. If I didn’t have kids (they are grown and on their own in other states) I honestly would have taken my life to get out of the misery I was in. A miracle happened and to make a story shorter, I was able to pay what I owed except for their attorney fees and court filing fees. That part alone came to almost 3,000.00 for basically nothing. That shows up on my monthly statement every month. I’ve not been late since then. I’ve asked for a breakdown of the attorney fees and they have refused to give that to me. I told them until I received that I would not pay that part. Not sure what I’ll do have if they come after me for that but I’d try to fight it. Anyway, getting a mobile home solved my problems but gave me other problems. I can’t even refinance because it’s not a hud loan or one of those that usually back a mortgage. When my 30 years is up I know there will be extra due but I’ll face that when I get there. I could sell and make some money if I could sell as is, because I have repairs I can’t afford to get done. Plus if I sold I would lose some of my benefits and I couldn’t rent anything now for what my monthly payments are. Speaking of repairs, dealing with mobile homes companies to get warranty work done is a joke. Not sure if that was because I’m a woman or what. I haven’t been able to use my back door since I bought the home because there was a leak and they never fixed it right. So the floor started rotting and it’s still rotted all these years later. There were other things too but not as severe as that. It was a good way to get a roof over my family’s heads but if I ever did it again at least I’m smarter now. Too old and disabled to do it again. Honestly, if I wouldn’t lose my benefits , I would sell and just rent, if I could find a low enough rent. It’s such a hassle and so hard to pay for things that go wrong. Always one repair or one payment away from losing everything I worked so hard for. As it is I’m behind in property taxes and though I’m making small payments to my county, it’s not enough. They are now threatening me to foreclose on me for 1,000.00. Life just really sucks sometimes. One last thing, there are not many choices of insurance companies that insure mobile homes and seems to be higher that stick built homes. I apologize for this being so long. Thank you for all you do. Warmly, Diane P

Isaac

Thursday 3rd of March 2022

Low Income Relief is an information service and does not provide cash or items directly. You will need to search our website for information about organizations that can help you meet those needs. Chat with Lira, she might be able to help! https://lowincomerelief.com/chat/ I hope this helps