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Preserving Manufactured Housing Communities

We own it!Manufactured Housing owners form resident-owned communities (ROCs) using low-cost loans and our expertise.

The Washington State Housing Finance Commission, in partnership with ROC Northwest and ROC USA, offers the financial tools and expert guidance for manufactured-housing (“mobile-home”) communities to become self-owned cooperatives. 

As of August 2017, we’ve helped the residents of ten communities across Washington state to join together and buy the land under their homes. Residents not only gain the ownership and management of their community, but also capital for improvements and ongoing maintenance. With the help of the Commission and our partners, you can own it.

Why manufactured-home communities?

Manufactured-home communities are unique. They provide critical housing affordable to people with lower incomes, especially in rural areas that lack many housing options. Residents usually own their homes, but not the land under them. Thus, when the land is sold, homeowners face an uncertain future. They may be displaced, and the affordable housing lost. That’s why the Commission is dedicated to helping find solutions.

manufactured homeWhat are the benefits?

When neighbors form a cooperative and buy their community, they gain the security of knowing they won’t be forced out by increased rents or sale of the land. Also, the loan often finances not only the purchase of the property, but critical improvements that may have been deferred for years. Finally, residents gain the freedom to set their own rules, control maintenance, and plan for future improvements.

How does the Commission help?

The Commission works in partnership with ROC USA to provide financing for the purchase (and sometimes improvement) of the property. This financing means a bank loan with favorable terms for the cooperative.

What are some examples of resident-owned communities?

The Commission has helped numerous manufactured-home communities across Washington State to preserve their land by joining together as a cooperative. Now that these residents own their neighborhoods, they’re building equity and making community improvements.

A few examples:  Oak Harbor  |  Moses Lake  |  Centralia |  Duvall

RESIDENTS:
 
Is your community up for sale, or has your landlord discussed selling the property?

residentIf so, this may be an opportunity to purchase it as a cooperative.

How do we (residents of a park) start the process?

Invite ROC Northwest to a neighborhood meeting. As a nonprofit technical-assistance organization with years of expertise helping manufactured-home communities to become resident owned, they can discuss your community’s options, as well as explain the steps and decision points.

What does it mean to become a cooperative?

If you decide to move forward as a cooperative, you’ll establish by-laws (rules) to determine how your co-op will operate, when meetings are held, and other rules of your new organization. You’ll also elect a board of directors to act on day-to-day issues and vote on larger matters. Each household purchases a low-cost share to become a member of the co-op, paying a monthly fee.

What is involved in the purchase of the property?

Typically, a cooperative will hire their own impartial expert to assess the community’s infrastructure and its ability to cover the cost of a loan. It then secures a loan to buy the property. The Commission and ROC USA have partnered to help finance this loan at favorable terms for many communities. The households in the cooperative pay a monthly fee to cover the mortgage, taxes, and other costs.

How much would it cost my household?

As a cooperative buying your community, you may need to increase monthly fees (lot rents) to cover mortgage costs. Typically, owners have seen their monthly fees increase anywhere from $10 to $100 a month. The amount depends on many factors: loan size; number of households; necessary reserves; and required site improvements. However, the purpose of this program is to help owners preserve their housing, so costs are kept as reasonable as possible.

manufactured homeLearn more by contacting the Commission or ROC Northwest

Commission:  jacob.richardson@wshfc.org

ROC Northwest:  info@nwcdc.coop

 LANDLORDS/ COMMUNITY OWNERS:
 
Are you a property owner interesting in selling your land?

If you are interested in selling your property to your residents, give the Commission a call and we can answer your questions. See also ROC USA’s info for property owners.

If you’re not ready to sell…

Need to make some improvements? We can often help finance utility upgrades (like water and electricity) to help you and your residents save money. Just ask.

Contact Us

Jacob Richardson | 206-287-4482 | jacob.richardson@wshfc.org
David Clifton | 206-287-4407 | david.clifton@wshfc.org

 

 
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