Turnaround Park Ideas - Posted by SandiFL

Posted by Michael(KCMO)m on December 01, 2007 at 09:03:41:


You’ve done a lot to turn your park around. I have enjoyed watching your success over the last few years and am happy for how well you’ve done.

I’m still keeping my eye out for some homes for you.

All the Best,

Turnaround Park Ideas - Posted by SandiFL

Posted by SandiFL on November 28, 2007 at 20:48:41:

I am involved as a “manager” of a RV / MH Park. This is a different environment for me. The park I live in is a 5 star 55+ park in Florida. The park that I am helping manage is a 0 star park all ages. It currently has people with and without children, with police records, no amenities, big dogs, lots of stray cats, people who do not pay the rent, cars that do not work, homes that I would not let me cats live in … Get the picture?

We are altering the ambiance of the park from the ratted fence to the pot hole streets!. The notice the residents had to remove their dogs went over as you might of expected. Half have moved out and the others “hide” their pet inside.

The evictions began the first week and of the 5 we started with, 4 have left so far (it has been 2 weeks yesterday).
Did I mention the paperwork for the residents transferred with the sale? Oh, of the 40 spaces, there were 20 sheets of paper given at the closing. Yes, to say that the record keeping was slim to none is an overstatement.

So, I am looking for suggestions. HELP!


Re: Turnaround Park Ideas - Posted by Rolf

Posted by Rolf on November 29, 2007 at 18:34:34:

I am in the middle of a turnaround situation in NE OH at the moment.
My formula is as follows:

  1. Get rid of the physical garbage first. Have a park-wide clean up day
    when the residents can get rid of anything. Be careful on the toxic
    stuff. Bring in dumpsters, work out a deal with a local trash hauler (as
    I did), whatever. The difference in appearance in one day will astound
    you. Then stay on top of this problem from now on. Don’t let the
    residents fall back into their old ways.

  2. Get rid of the human garbage. Evict as many as you have to. Have a
    meeting with the local police chief to find out who are the worst
    people. I suggest you focus on drug dealers even if they pay on time.
    Grit your teeth and get this over with. Others will fall in line really
    quickly. Am in this stage right now and the results are worth the

  3. Work on improvements in physical appearance, signage, better
    lease agreeements, amenities, advertising, etc. Haven’t planted bulbs
    yet? Why not? Nothing brightens up a place like drifts of spring bulbs
    and they are CHEAP. Huge impact for little money.

  4. Get homes into the park, sell them on contract, and control the
    quality of the new residents. Get going on the Lonnie Deals now to
    have something to sell when people get their tax refunds.

Good luck.


Re: Turnaround Park Ideas - Posted by ScottT

Posted by ScottT on November 29, 2007 at 08:00:09:

I purchased a park 3 years ago. The first thing I did was repaint the office, fill in the old swimming pool, repaved all the roads, ect. The the next thing I did was raise the rent $45.00 a month bigging in 90 days. That let everyone time to make up their mind if they wanted to stay in a park that was going to sparkle and still well below the area market. I lost only 2 homes and did not allow them to stay in the park. I replaced those 2 homes with newer Vanderbilt repos. Three years later, the park runs itself because they know the rules are the rules and they have a super clean park to live in. Rent has gone up $60.00 total and we have installed water meters on every home to take care of that expense. We have added 15 homes in the last 3 years and only have 7 spots left. The people we are getting are the best. Best of Luck!

Re: Turnaround Park Ideas - Posted by Ryan (NC)

Posted by Ryan (NC) on November 29, 2007 at 05:08:26:

Everyone has their own way to go about it but we all have the same end goal… On paper it’s easy to turn around a park and infill empty lots, the reality is it can be a slow painful process at times.

I tackle things in order of what will make the biggest impact on the property as a whole, normally I start with trash and just watch the property and it’s problem people. Normally within the first few days the worst of the worst will point themselves’ out and they get taken care of. As Tony said you can’t tackle every problem at once or you’ll drive yourself nutz or go broke… From my experience 25% or so of the tenants will relocate in the first 6 months of a turn around project, I just budget it in as an expense much like repairing the units.

My advice is to tackle the highest priority item that will change the property for the good and add profit to the bottom line… finish that one and move on to the next… soon the list will start dwindling and you will be able to look back and say WOW! How do you eat an elephant?

Best wishes,
Ryan Needler

Re: Turnaround Park Ideas - Posted by Sailor

Posted by Sailor on November 29, 2007 at 04:08:49:

This is a familiar story to many of us. My method was to show park improvements as I went around straightening things up. Some picnic benches & a gorgeous new sign, as well as pecan trees planted in every yard were my 1st steps.

Giving up a family pet is really hard, but the neighbors cheered when I got out the pit bulls. My fave tip is using a “silent” dog whistle to ferret out the dogs in hiding. Requiring up-to-date vaccinations & liability ins. w/help roust out some of animals, as the owners don’t want to put out an $$$. I got out the pit bulls by telling the owner’s that in addition to the shots & ins., they had to put the dogs in obedience school. They came to the conclusion it was cheaper to move.

Your paperwork might be better than the stuff I got. Turns out all the leases had been signed the day prior to closing, as none had previously existed.

Good luck! Just remember your major goals are to (1) increase income, & (2) decrease expenses, & that the good tenants w/appreciate your efforts @ improvement.


Re: Turnaround Park Ideas - Posted by Tony Colella

Posted by Tony Colella on November 28, 2007 at 20:56:29:

Hey Sandi,

My suggestion would be to not fight all the battles at one time. My first battle would be to get new leases signed by all tenants. You may have to give a certain number of days notice (ex. 30 days) before you can do this.

From there you can begin to pick your battles. Usually the loudest, non-rent paying tenants is battle number one. After you get them out, many others will fall in line, allowing you the time to fight other battles such as the dogs, pot holes, abandoned cars etc.

If you take on too much at one time you will not be able to stay on top of it and they will smell the weakness and test you at every turn. If you concentrate your efforts you will not be beaten on that topic and their will to defy you will weaken, some will move, some will wait and others you will get rid of until the general populace falls in line. There is no eutopia for long however.


Re: Turnaround Park Ideas - Posted by Andrew

Posted by Andrew on November 30, 2007 at 09:45:32:

Very good idea on bringing in a dumpster. One of the parks here did that and it really made a big difference in just a couple of days. People will part with a bunch of their crap if you make it really easy (and FREE) for them.

Probably a good idea to do this once a year.