Is it an attainable outcome or a dream too far that the elderly Mr. and Mrs. Kim would be allowed to stay in the mobile home they bought and remodeled in the Rancho Fullerton Mobile Home Estates on Valencia in Fullerton?
The Kims have hired a local attorney to object to the $12,800 in attorney fees the park lawyer is demanding from them. Hopefully, the judge in the hearing set for the end of September will see that Rancho Fullerton Mobile home park lawyer Gregory Beam, who makes his living representing Mobile home park owners in acquisitions, creating and enforcing rigid rules and regulations, and other matters, is gouging the elderly couple who live on their Social Security retirement income. After all, complaints were promptly handled by the Kims, who are still trying to stay in their home, where they have made many friends.
The park manager has continued to harass the couple and has refused to accept their monthly space rent. The Kims have never been late on their space rent and did not understand why park manager Ms. West would reject their rent until they were told that a landlord refusing rent is the first step in eviction proceedings. Even if the Kims, at this point, agree to sell their mobile home and move, they are in a tricky situation because mobile homes are notoriously non-mobile. Taking their home with them requires enormous moving costs and available vacant space to move to in another park. But, in a “Catch 22,” selling their home requires park manager approval, which is not guaranteed.
The Kims bought the mobile home from a woman who had angered park officials when she refused to sell directly to the park. But, after winning a harassment and wrongful eviction case against the park, that resident successfully sold her mobile home privately and moved elsewhere. However, according to the mobile homeowners’ advocacy group MHPHOA, something more may be happening here that would explain the ongoing harassment by park manager Ms. West and attorney Beam towards the Kims and others living at Rancho Fullerton.
According to MHPHOA, which reprinted the Kim’s story and others on its website https://mhphoa.com/about, “This type of behavior typically precedes a park sale. An offer is made by a prospective buyer, but there are conditions. One of those conditions may be that the current owners bring the Cap Rate up to a certain percentage. This is usually done through space rent increases. It may take a couple of years to reach the target Cap Rate, but once they do – SOLD.”
According to Park Attorney Beam & Associates website: “As a result of our experience, we have developed a Legal Services Program intended to provide a full-service approach to the legal representation of mobile home park operations.
- Acquisitions and Formations: All legal services associated with the acquisition of mobile home parks and the preparation of the required documents, procedures, and entities necessary for park operations. These documents include Long Term Leases, Rules and Regulations, Partnership Agreements, Incorporation documentation, Private and Public offering documentation, etc.
- Park Operations: All legal services associated with the operation of mobile home parks, including, but not limited to:
- Enforcement of rules and regulations through injunction and unlawful detainer actions;
- Management hot-line intended to address matters of immediate concern to park management;
- Rent control administrative and litigation matters; and
- Land use planning issues such as conditional use permit applications, zoning variances, planning commission, and city council representation.
3. Divestiture: All legal services associated with the “exit strategy” of park owners, including, but not limited to:
- Park conversions and;
- Sales and syndication, including sales to tenants.