My story so far… (long) - Posted by J (NC)
Posted by J (NC) on February 22, 2009 at 16:43:50:
I’m just starting out at this. I tried it a few years ago, but was so tentative and scared that I didn’t do much more than spend hours driving through parks. Now I’m at it again, and I’m doing a lot better.
Anyway, there was an ad in the Sunday paper last Sunday and this Sunday offering, “38 homes in a park, $2900 each. Move or stay.” I didn’t call last week for some unknown reason, but decided to this week. I talk to the guy who said that he would sell me all of them, or as many as I wanted. I would love to buy them all, but I don’t have anywhere near that kind of money, nor do I think I could line up 38 qualified buyers that quickly.
I drove to see him today. This guy doesn’t own the park, he owns the trailers. But due to his failing health (grossly obese, in a wheelchair) he is trying to sell them. He had been renting the trailers, and so most of them have tenants in them, which I told him I wasn’t interested in. I have NO desire to be a landlord, especially 45 minutes from home. I asked which ones were empty, that I’d like to check those out. He gave me the list and sent me out into the park to check them out.
I drove to the newest one, a 1995 New Moon, 2 Br, 2 Ba. Empty. I couldn’t get into to look around, so I walked around it for a while and then started peering into windows. Finally, I was checking something on the porch when a neighbor came out.
I greeted him and told him that I’d been talking to Mr. (let’s call him Johnson) Johnson about buying some of the homes. He said, “Shoot, Mr. Johnson ain’t in any position to be talking about selling these homes. He’s so far behind on his lot rent that he’s about to get 43 trailers evicted!”
I start talking to the guy about what’s happening. He told me that the guy I needed to talk to was (let’s call him BJ) BJ, and that he knew what was going on with the whole thing. Then he told me that his mother, who lives one street over, had BJ’s telephone number. So I go with this guy to his mother’s trailer to get BJ’s number. In the process we talk about the condition of the park, which isn’t all that great. While there, they offer to sell me his mother’s trailer for $8500. I forgot to give them my card. D’oh!
So I went back to see Mr. Johnson and said that a neighbor had told me that there was some kind of lien on the titles, so if I purchased one, would I be able to get the title straight out? He assured me that the titles were fine, that if I bought one I would get it straight out. He even showed me where he had all the titles for them. He told me that he was still shopping around interested parties, but that he would know something else by March 1st. I gave him my card, told him I’d love to buy one, and went on my way.
What he didn’t know was that I had BJ’s telephone number, and my first step after leaving was to call BJ. BJ said that he didn’t know anything about the titles, whether they were clear or not, but that he believed that they were clear. Other than that, he told me he couldn’t say more, but he could put me in touch with Mr. Johnson’s attorney. Then we talked a little more and he told me that the issue was back lot-rent, and that if I bought the home, it would be a question of whether or not the home could stay there. According to BJ, he is in “serious trouble” over the issue of back lot-rent. By the way, I gather that BJ is the PM, and the owner lives in Seattle.
So I don’t know what to do next. If Mr. Johnson doesn’t come up with 3 months back lot-rent on 43 trailers by March the first, (that’s $35,000) I think the PM is going to do something.
So the questions as I see them with my very limited experience, are:
- What will the PM do if he doesn’t come up with the money, which I think is doubtful? The owner isn’t living in the trailers, so does he evict the tenants?
- If I could buy this one home (I can only swing one, I swear) is there a way that it could be singled out and the money go towards ITS back-rent, so that it could be kept there?
- If I offer to pay the back-rent to the PM, I know that I’d have to get a better deal on the trailer than the owner is most likely willing to give. That would add $825 to the price of the home if it’s 3 months late.
- There were a LOT of homes for sale in the park. I am hesitant to buy given a) the impending problems with the rent, b) concern that any price I could give to buyers would be grossly over the other trailers in the park.
I think my plan of action is to wait until Mr. Johnson calls me, if he does. If, after the 1st, I haven’t heard anything, I think I’m going to call BJ and ask him what happened. If they had to evict, I’ll put an offer on what’s available now. What do you all think?