Taking Control: MN Mobile Home Residents Seek Park Ownership
Monday, October 26, 2015
ST. PAUL, Minn. - A growing number of Minnesotans who live in mobile homes are now building a solid foundation for the future by taking ownership of the parks in which they live.
Warren Kramer, executive director with the Northcountry Cooperative Foundation, says those who live in manufactured home communities are at the mercy of the parks' owners, whose main goal is making money.
He notes that can mean regular rent increases, lack of investments for improvements and displacement. So Northcountry is working to help residents band together to gain ownership when parks go up for sale.
"So their lot rents become stabilized and become lower than rents in investor-owned parks in the market over time," says Kramer. "And then houses in resident-owned communities have been proven to sell faster and for more money precisely because of that kind of security that resident co-ops provide."
Kramer says Northcountry has already helped residents of eight manufactured home communities in the state cooperatively purchase their parks, with another located in Clarks Grove set to close next month.
In addition to the economic advantages, there are also social benefits of park ownership for the manufactured home residents, who are disproportionately senior citizens, those with disabilities and low-income families.
That's why the efforts are being partially financed by the Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Minnesota Foundation. Carolyn Link is the executive director.
"We are funding this grant because we know that healthy, stable housing and the financial security that comes with it are really essential to good health," says Link.
The ownership conversions as a way to address the shortfall of affordable housing in Minnesota will be among the topics at the 11th annual Innovations in Manufactured Homes conference, which starts today. There are about 1,000 manufactured home parks in the state with a population approaching 200,000 people.
get more stories like this via email
Progressive groups are speaking out against the idea of a constitutional convention, warning it could be used to impose conservative policies on …
Health and Wellness
Today is National Gay Men's HIV/AIDS Awareness Day, and Nevada is one of the 10 states with the highest HIV infection rates. In 2021, more than 11,00…
The current Farm Bill expires Sept. 30 and with a looming government shutdown, reauthorization does not appear imminent. Wisconsin farm groups say …
Kentuckians continue to be charged, jailed and fined for cannabis-related offenses at high rates, despite dramatic shifts in public opinion, …
Three conservation groups have sued to stop a large logging project near Yellowstone National Park they say threatens endangered species in Montana…
Elected officials in New York and across the country are urging state and local governments to use new funding available through the Environmental Pro…
A new poll found Pennsylvania Republican voters want political candidates to prioritize preserving and growing manufacturing including tariffs in the …
New polling data showed most Ohio Republican voters say small-town factory jobs are not coming back, and want their elected representatives to …