NC...nothing under $6,500 in what? - Posted by Bobby

Posted by Dan…IN. on November 03, 2000 at 23:59:27:

Sounds like good advice, Karl…Dan

NC…nothing under $6,500 in park…now what? - Posted by Bobby

Posted by Bobby on October 17, 2000 at 17:26:59:

Hi Lonnie & Ernest,

I live in mobile home heaven as you say, but after touring some parks, they don’t have anything under $6,500. and they don’t allow MH’s older than 1990.

The park managers are nice so far, but still a lone ways from first deal.

Your book has lots of good infomation…we live close to the NC/VA line. Is it better to do this in VA or in NC…the prices seem lower in VA but we are just starting out.

Most of the ads I read are for $4,500 but the MH has to be moved off lot.

Park managers are nicier than what most post say they are on this site…I kinda got discouraged with all the negative post about Park Manager…Some post make the mangers out to be evil, creatures in MH land…and I guess they’re are some like that…but all the negative post almost discouraged me from even going out to my first park…newbies like me are scared all ready starting this…it doesn’t help when we read how nasty a park manager is…So fellow post writers…it’s good to know you are having problems with park managers and we need to know here…but all the negative post almost kept me from going to my first park, so If I felt that way how many other newbies have quit before we really had a change to find out if it worked in our area.

Thanks Lonnie for helping with your book.


Re: NC…nothing under $6,500 in park…now what? - Posted by Dan (NC)

Posted by Dan (NC) on October 19, 2000 at 10:51:16:

Where are you looking in NC? Your comments echo my own about three years ago. I couldn’t find a deal and as a result forced a couple that weren’t as good as they could have been. But it’s like looking for a certain shell on the beach or mushroom in the woods. For the longest time you’ll swear that they just aren’t there. And then you’ll find one, and your brain will figure out what to look for, and from then on the shells/mushrooms are all over the place. Drop me an email at and let me know where you want to find a home. If I know of any (and if they aren’t ones I want!) I’ll send you the information. And something else. This business can be fun, challenging, rewarding, enlightening, and at the end of the day, profitable. If you’re only after the profitable part, you’ll miss out on some of the other positive aspects. Good Luck!

An analogy to election politics… - Posted by JHyre in Ohio

Posted by JHyre in Ohio on October 18, 2000 at 08:18:56:

Al Gore says that he deplores “negative campaigning” (though he certainly doesn’t hesitate to employ it). He has reason to deplore it- he’s done a lot of very negative things that are inconvenient for him right around election time. My own very biased, un-PC, non-Opra (Whinfrey, that is) opinion is that “negative campaigning”- aka, pointing out someone’s weaknesses- has an important place in electoral politics. The American people should know the good AND the bad when it comes to each candidate.

As goes politics, so with business. Doing Lonnie Deals has lots of upsides- and like any other business- its share of downside. Focus on the good side- and you are in for some rude surprises, possibly business-ending surprises?..we’ve all seen examples of that on this site. Focus on the negative, and you’ll never get started. We’ve seen a lot of that too!

Point is, read each post in context AND the sum total of posts in context. See the good, see the bad. Plan for the bad, achieve the good. Yes, some park managers are from he!!. Others (admittedly fewer in my experience with ALL classes of people) are simply sterling people. The first five months in this business were AWFUL for me…due largely to my own inexperience and some real loser managers. But I had the familial, emotional, intellectual and financial resources (in order of importance) to see it through?.and FINALLY found a (married) couple of managers who are just phenomenal people. Business is much better now, though it still has its rough moments.

I am contemplating entering parks of the sort you describe. My strategy, for my market- I can get repos in other parks for about $3000, plus $1500 to move em and maybe another $1500 to repair. That?s a more than double what I usually put into homes. In these nicer parks, I should (that is SHOULD, in THEORY!) be able to sell for cash and use that cash for more such deals or reinvest in Lonnie deals (aka- basically what Jacob in Indianapolis did/does). In my area, 3BR’s are HOT- they usually sell very fast, so I’ll only buy 3BR’s to help the odds. This is risky, in that it is a departure from my usual classic Lonnie Deals. We shall see if I am up to the task of managing that risk. Other strategies may be appropriate for such parks, we’ll see. Disadvantage of such parks: High cost of entry, picky park may cause delays in selling and therefore higher carrying costs. Advantages: Higher quality of buyer, ergo, ability to get cash or higher quality notes (read David Butler’s TIN CAN ALLEY for an EXCELLENT understanding of what constitutes “good” notes). It’s on you and me to minimize the downside and maximize the upside. People who learn how to do this consistently make excellent businessmen. Remember, it’s the batting AVERAGE that counts- you’ll have some strikeouts and some grand slams, but the average tells the tale. And an average takes time to build.

If this sort of park isn’t for you, be PERSISTENT and go FIND the right type of park. It took me 5 months of utter misery and wasted money…and I have to drive about an hour and twenty minutes to get there. Running a business from a distance as a third priority- behind family and the job that pays the bills ain’t easy- but you do what it takes. As I’ve said in other posts?“It’s a long way to the top if you wanna rock & roll”. Either make lemonade out of your lemons or go find the Minute-Made??..but you must neither ignore nor succumb to the negative aspects of this business.

Get up and DO IT NOW!

John Hyre

What is your target market? - Posted by Dirk Roach

Posted by Dirk Roach on October 18, 2000 at 01:49:41:

How many parks have you rode the bumps in?
And what type of shedual have you been consistently hitting those parks?
How many target parks are in your area?
What is the top dollar that you are willing to buy for to obtain the yield that you desire?
What can you do to find more homes?


Re: NC…nothing under $6,500 in park…now what? - Posted by Steve–DC

Posted by Steve–DC on October 17, 2000 at 21:48:31:

Hi Bobby,

Not wanting to go against anyone else’s advice–especially Lonnie’s, but here is something that might work for you just to see what response you get.

Do either or both of the following:

Take out an ad that says that “Guaranteed WRITTEN Offer on your Mobile home”. When someone calls (unless it is a MH broker) the seller will more than likely be at least a bit motivated. The extent to which will be up to you determine by the questions that you ask. Try to find out on the phone all the info that Lonnie suggests in his books as they relate to finding a truly motivated buyer.

Fill out a “Mobile Home Purchase Agreement” using the information that they provide you on the phone and send the contract to them in the mail. What to offer? If they ask 10K and they own the home free and clear–offer half–5K.

Include a short letter with your offer that states that you invest in mobile homes. Explain that you know that they want to get as much as possible for their home. Tell them that if they can’t get any other better offers on their home, you will pay them $XXXX dollars for the home. Make sure and include a clause in the contract that the purchase is “subject to a physical inspection and approval of my partner(spouse)” (or other “higher authority”). If the seller accepts the offer you can always get out of the deal (if you want to) by saying that your partner did not approve. You may be able to get the price even lower after a physical inspection of the property shows some problems. But if it turns out to be one you want–you got it for half price (pretty near wholesale).

OR, you could just call all the sellers that you currently know about and follow the procedure above. You never know what offer someone will accept.

Hope this gets you into a positive mode. At least it will get you used to asking sellers the questions that you need to ask to find out if they are truly motivated.

Steve Smith

A sure fire cure - Posted by Karl (OH)

Posted by Karl (OH) on October 17, 2000 at 21:21:42:


If you ever get discouraged with mobile homes, just go over the the main news group. Those folks seem to go though h*ll to put their deals together. But they have real nice payoffs when they?re done. That?s one of the reasons I?m doing mobile homes. It?s a relatively easy and low risk form of real estate investing, with very nice returns

Karl Kleiner

Re: NC…nothing under $6,500 in park…now what? - Posted by Eric C

Posted by Eric C on October 17, 2000 at 20:33:47:

Hi Bobby -

Please understand that Park Managers are not evil incarnate. Neither are Realtors or bankers.

Some people just have to take out their frustrations on someone and those groups are right there in the line of fire. Easy targets you might say.

All investment games (including real estate) are really played with what you have between your ears and not what’s in your wallet. The sooner you learn that, the better off you will be.

Persistance is key. Everyone here was a “newbie” once upon a time.

For the most part, if you’re going to be successful, you have to learn not to let yourself get too discouraged.

If you stick with it, the deals will come.

Take care,

Eric C

PS - remember, this is not a race. The only person who needs to be satisfied with your level of success is you.

Re: NC…nothing under $6,500 in park…now what? - Posted by Lonnie

Posted by Lonnie on October 17, 2000 at 20:24:30:

Hi Bobby,

Stop letting negativism control your thoughts. And don’t be affected by all the negative posts you read about park managers, (or anyone else). You only need one park, and one PM who will work with you to get started. So keep looking until you find one, they’re out there.

Sometimes it’s all in how you approach the PM. I like to spend as much warm up time as possible with a new PM, and talk about anything except business. Give the PM time to see what makes you tick and a chance to feel comfortable with you. And the same for you. Try to find something the two of you have in common, or can relate to, (fishing, golf, sports etc) and let the conversation shift in that direction. And just be yourself, don’t try to put up a front. When you sense the time is right, then ask about any MH’s that may be for sale in the park, and offer to help the PM find a good tenant for that home and keep it on the lot.

Talk with several park tenants, workers etc, before you meet with the PM. Learn all you can so you will have a good feel as to the type person the PM is. Then you will know how to approach him/her and how they think and operate.

As for finding a MH, don’t look for the MH, look for a motivated owner who needs to sell a MH. If the seller isn’t motivated and doesn’t really need to sell, you’re talking to the wrong person. Keep looking. And I don’t think the grass is any greener in VA than NC. You have plenty of opportunities right in your own area if you will just learn how to recognize the opportunity, and take action.

And don’t think you have to pay what the ads state, or the price a seller quotes you, that’s simply a starting point for negotiations. It’s up to you to determine if the seller is really motivated and really needs to sell. This all takes patience and practice, so don’t get in a hurry and make the wrong deal. Keep practicing and stick with it until you find that first deal. Once you do, and receive that first check, you’ll never feel the same about working a :job".

Good luck,


A comment on your post - Posted by Tony-VA

Posted by Tony-VA on October 17, 2000 at 18:33:24:


The posts about the park managers were intended to help answer specific questions, such as yours, about problems encountered with park managers. Most of us are happy to mention the great park managers we have run into as well. If not for them, we would not be in business. We have not forgotten this. We go out of our way to make sure our good park managers know how important they are and how much we appreciate them.

As for scaring off Newbies. Fear is in the unknown. Many responses to your posts have been done so as to educate you and others, while answering the specific question posted. It is our hopes that in so doing, we decrease the unknown, provide education and increase confidence.

We cannot provide all the confidence and education for new investors. It is up to new investors to learn and apply. We are simply investors as well who have gone through, or are still going through the same problems as those who post questions.

I have taken a bit of an offense that you state that we are scaring off new investors. Many of us spend a great deal of time striving for just the opposite result. I am sorry if you were overly concerned by some posts. Business can be tough at times. This forum goes to great length to assist during those times. We also go to great length to celebrate the victories that are posted here as well (take a look at some recent posts and you will find just that).

The topics of park managers typically, and repeatedly stress the importance of working with them. Consequently people post frustrations they have had with particular managers. You have missed the point of the conversation if you draw your conclusion from that portion alone.

The point of the post is to NOT skip the park manager. For some reason it appears to be a common error made by new investors. In committing this infraction, they not only miss the great deals the park manager can lead them too, but they open themselves up to financial liabilities such as back lot rent, repair expectations or even demands to have the home removed from the park. This is what the posts are intended to convey.

Simply put. Don’t skip the park managers.

There is no need to fear them. They are people trying to do a job. We simply recommend (strongly) that you work with them from the beginning.

I would hazard a guess that by working with the park managers Bobby, you will in time find the homes selling for far less. If the parks you have entered do not appear ripe for Lonnie deals, you have done yourself a service. You now have fewer number of parks to concern yourself with. Process of elimination has begun. Put these results to good effort and move on.

Nothing But Best Wishes For Your Success,


Good Post. (nt) - Posted by Tony-VA

Posted by Tony-VA on October 19, 2000 at 11:00:08:


Excellent post!.. - Posted by JCT

Posted by JCT on October 30, 2000 at 21:49:51:

I will have it framed and laminated! Where in OH are you at? Maybe close enough to share ideas. 45 min. S of CLE or 110mi. from COL (both by 71N/S)

Great post John, sounds like a plan. Thanks (nt) - Posted by Robert (Houston,TX)

Posted by Robert (Houston,TX) on October 18, 2000 at 20:12:55:


Re: An analogy to election politics… - Posted by Bobby

Posted by Bobby on October 18, 2000 at 08:31:01:

Hi John,

Don’t you have a problem bringing in an older MH into a newer park…the parks I talk to, all four of them!, said they would not take a MH older than a 1990.

Moving a MH here is about $3,000 I’ve checked into that already.



Re: What is your target market? - Posted by Bobby

Posted by Bobby on October 18, 2000 at 07:51:16:

Hi Dirk,

Like I answered in the above post…in a 60 mile diameter of our house there are 69 mobile home parks…we have just gone to four so far…I know you are going to say we keep looking but it does get discouraging…for some reason I am used to offers being turned down on regular houses but this is new to me and I guess I am wanted to make this work fast…as there are health issues in my case.



Re: NC…nothing under $6,500 in park…now what? - Posted by Bobby

Posted by Bobby on October 18, 2000 at 07:47:22:

Thanks Steve,

I’ll have to give it a try, since we live in an area that has 69 mobile home parks within a 60 diameter…it wouldn’t be problem to just go see the MH first.



Re: A sure fire cure - Posted by Bobby

Posted by Bobby on October 18, 2000 at 07:42:01:

Hi Karl,

Yes, I have read the, Main Newsgroups post. I have not given up on MH’s but anything new is Scary.



LOL How funny (nt) - Posted by Dirk Roach

Posted by Dirk Roach on October 18, 2000 at 01:45:12:


Re: NC…nothing under $6,500 in park…now what? - Posted by Bobby

Posted by Bobby on October 17, 2000 at 20:50:36:

Hi Eric,

Thanks for the pep talk we really needed it. I’ll keep a stiff upper lip and keep plugging away.



Re: A comment on your post - Posted by Bobby

Posted by Bobby on October 17, 2000 at 19:32:56:

Hi Tony,

Didn’t mean to offend anyone, maybe it’s just me.