5 Red Flags to Keep in Mind When Considering Mobile Home Communities
Leasing in a mobile home park might be exactly what you’re looking for. Perhaps you’ve given it some thought,
and you’ve started looking, or it’s just something that’s occurred to you, and you haven’t started earnestly looking into mobile home parks yet. Either way, you’re on the verge of making a good decision. Mobile home parks are generally cheaper, have a built-in community, and, unlike with an apartment, you get a standalone home and a yard. It’s the perfect mix of a family home and an apartment community. Just like with any home search, though, there are certain red flags to consider when you’re thinking of leasing in a mobile home park. Here are some of the top red flags to be on the lookout for:
Does the Park Have Unkempt Grounds?
Take a look around the whole park when you are considering leasing. You are not just living in one home; you’ll be living in a community, and that community should be up to standards. If the grounds look unkempt in any way, whether it’s overgrown lawns or houses in need of repair, then you need to question the viability of moving into that park. Both communal and private grounds should look well-kept and cared for.
Does the Park Have Many Vacant Homes?
If the park has just a couple vacant homes, or even a small handful, then there’s no need to worry. Some turnover is normal, but if the park sports many vacant homes, then you should perhaps reconsider leasing in that particular park. If a park has trouble keeping homes filled, then that could be a sign that the management isn’t very good. In many cases, vacant homes go hand-in-hand with unkempt lots and grounds.
Has the Management Been Communicative and Helpful?
Consider your relationship with the management prior to moving, while you are looking at homes. If they have been communicative and have responded to questions without much delay, then they are likely the same with those already in the community. However, if you have to reach out multiple times or if they don’t seem intent on answering any questions you have, you may want to look elsewhere. An unresponsive management spells disaster for the park and will make your life a little harder while living there.
What Is the Application Process Like, and What Kind of Rules Do They Have for Tenants?
These two questions go hand-in-hand because the application process is often a reflection of the rules already in place for tenants. Some rules are wonderful! They help keep the grounds in order and provide structure for a thriving community. It’s when rules go overboard that you need to look elsewhere. An application process shouldn’t be too intensive or strict, and you shouldn’t be paying half as much as your rent when applying. Ask to see the rules that tenants are expected to follow; a very strict set of rules may indicate problems within the park or management itself.
Has There Been a History of Leasing Rate Increases?
There will be, of course, some history of rate increases, as the cost of living rises. You need to make sure that management hasn’t raised the rates inordinately, or too many times in a year. Sometimes, too many vacant homes will be indicative of this. Finding out about rate increases may take some digging on your part, so don’t be afraid to ask questions of management or current residents.
On the whole, mobile home parks are wonderful places to live. Many have a thriving community, with weekly or monthly activities and events. Moving into a park might be just perfect for you and your family. If a park has good management, none of the above issues should be present. They’re all avoidable with a responsive and communicative management team, so let your first impression of that team speak to you. Mobile home parks are affordable and safe, especially with a good management team in place.
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