Where are all the parks, Ray?


I thought I would direct this question to Ray Alcorn specifically, since he lives in Virginia. But any helpful replies would be appreciated.

Ray, I live in the Richmond area, and it seems as if there are NEVER parks for sale within 200 miles of here; at least in any remotely desirable area of Virginia with less than 25% unemployment, or that don’t have asking prices that a hedge fund would balk at.

Looking at the various listings on the internet, it seems other states (Texas and Florida, in particular) have plenty of listings for those great turnaround plays that I read about on this website (35 spaces, located 5 minutes from my house, below market rents, etc…)

Any that do come on the market get snapped up immediately, because MHP are fantastic investments (which leads me to wonder how the people writing these stories about finding great deals with burned-out owners who offer great owner-financing and 21% CAP are locating these properties).

And of course there is always the temptation to just build a new one…

Any thoughts?

I’ve got a broker friend who has two pocket-listings for parks in the Blacksburg VA area (my hometown). He had two more listed in Franklin County and Bedford County, but they might have sold by now. I know the B’burg parks (used to own one of them) and have seen the financials. Pricing is decent, but it depends on how you feel about a combination of lot rent, rental homes, and notes on owner-occupied units. Great opportunity for a cash-flow buyer.

Send me your contact info to ray@lcorn.com and I’ll put you in touch.

As to building a new land-lease park, probably not feasible. The problem is non-existent single wide production, and declining production of multi-section HUD code units (as opposed to modular under BOCA code). I am in the middle of writing my 2012 Forecast and just looked at 2011 housing data… mfg housing produced a total of 46,000 units, lowest ever on record, and 90% of that was multi-section. Consumer financing is non-existent for anything except land/home deals, and that competes directly with housing supply, so the edge is in financing the deals yourself. Tony Colella, host of the Mobile Home forum had a course “Investing in Mobile Homes With Land”, but I can’t find it in the bookstore. Drop him a note on the MH forum and ask.

This is why existing parks are hot, new development is zero, and Lonnie-deal financing of existing units is the only game in town for buyers. Add to that the demand for affordable housing and you’re right, it’s a great time to be a park owner.