The PA Coalition of MH Residents - PAMHOA
Protect Your Rights!
WORKING FOR FAIRNESS IN HARRISBURG!
PAMHOA IS THE ONLY INDEPENDENT AND PROFESSIONAL AGENCY DEDICATED TO REPRESENTING MANUFACTURED HOMEOWNER INTERESTS.
WE HAVE DRAFTED EQUITABLE AND FAIR LEGISLATION TO REPRESENT RESIDENT CONCERNS, AND WE OPPOSE ATTEMPTS TO INTRODUCE "INDUSTRY DRIVEN" LEGISLATION THAT DOES NOTHING TO REALISTICALLY HELP RESIDENTS OR PROTECT THEIR LEGAL INTERESTS.
WE CALL ON THE LEGISLATURE TO PROTECT OWNERS OF MANUFACTURED HOMES, LIVING IN LAND- LEASE COMMUNITIES, FROM FRAUD AND OTHER PRACTICES THAT SERVE TO DESTROY THE HOME OWNERS EQUITY AND LEAVE THE HOME OWNER TRAPPED AND DEFENSELESS AGAINST UNFAIR AND OFTEN OUTRAGEOUS COSTS OR CHARGES.
WE ALSO DECLARE THE OFFICE OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL FAILS TO PROTECT THESE CITIZENS AS IS REASONABLY NEEDED.
NEEDED LEGISLATION INCLUDES:
i) Better protections when operating a "home owners association".ii) Opportunities for Community purchaseiii) Corrections to ACT 80iv) Registration of Communitiesiv) Communication of resident rightsv) Protection against financial loss, unfair leases, and excessive rents.
Please see other legislative comments below and elsewhere on this site.
AND, PLEASE VISIT LINKS "HB 1767", "New legislation" and "Legislative Change" at this web-site.
Resident's National Organization (NMHOA) recently took step to discourage aggressive landlords, asking residents to sign a petition. NMHOA work extensively at the national level and Washington DC., to represent resident issues. For information on NMHOA please visit:You can read about all about NMHOA at the NMHOA webpage: www.nmhoa.org and please check out our facebook page: http://www.facebook.com/NationalManufacturedHomeOwnersAssociationAdditional information about the work NMHOA is doing with the Center for Community Change (CCC) on manufactured housing issues and retirement security can be found at: www.mhaction.org
OTHER URGENT ISSUES:
PAMHOA made formal representations to the members of the "House Urban Affairs Committee" (and the Sponsors of HB 1767) setting out concerns and objections... following the denial of essential resident amendments recognizing resident needs to arrive at a FAIR and BALANCED bill.
To learn more about HB 1767, please visit link "HB 1767" (at left)
RESIDENTS COMPLAIN HB 1767 DOES NOT PROVIDE NEEDED PROTECTIONS FOR RESIDENTS AND THEIR INVESTMENT
The long delay in HB 1767 coming to a vote (several years delay), and with residents increasing concerns for issues such as illicit leases (unreasonable guidelines for living)...
...AND unreasonable rents, (excessive rent increases obtained by duress),
AND the opposition by the Manufacturing Industry (representing [protecting] Community Owners) against good sense provisions needed to amend ACT 80 (see below), makes the present version of HB 1767 inadequate and unsuitable without revision.
PAMHOA continues to work with legislators and residents to obtain a bill that responsibly meets resident's concerns (and defends and respects their property, while recognizing the industry's reasoned needs.)
Amendments worked on for months to improve ACT 80 have been denied in the House Urban Affairs Committee. This is a major disappointment for residents when most - due to 30 day lease (exemption) - are denied the intended benefits of ACT 80.
Watch here for all developments... to keep you informed.
Successful legislation is only obtained when residents participate in writing letters of complaint or support. Contact PAMHOA for more information.
Other NEWS HEADLINES at "GHA HOME" page.
PURPOSED FOR 3/4 MILLION CITIZENS IN 2000 COMMUNITIES ACROSS THE COMMONWEALTH
THE LARGEST BLOCK OF UNSUBSIDIZED AFFORDABLE HOUSING IN THE COMMONWEALTH
- FOCUS on working to bring change in Harrisburg – through new legislation!
- Do not attempt (unless there is a confirmed legal basis) to struggle within your own community by “taking on” the Park Owner - BUT INSTEAD inform residents (your neighbors) of their constitutionally protected freedom and responsibility - to protect their rights - AND to WORK together through the legislative process and “right to assembly”
- Residents can do this by supporting PAMHOA; writing letters, sending e-mails, or making phone calls; AND informing all residents (neighbors and residents in other communities) of their responsibility and need to actively participate.
- Information can be obtained from PAMHOA or its members and representatives. AND to encourage membership and registration with PAMHOA, so that residents can be kept informed – getting this message out in your community and neighboring communities.
For a full copy of "TIME TO ACT" report please go to the link at left
Wrong and Egregious
No matter the interpretation under law – supporting a precept where responsible home owners leasing land to site their conventional or “mobile” homes (not trailers), that allows the landowner to increase lot fees without cause or justification and to intimidate by the use of leases removing constitutional rights, AND in addition, intentionally place the home owner’s property at risk, making ownership unaffordable and the home unmarketable, also leading to circumstances causing default so that the land owner can take possession, is simply WRONG. The promotion of these conditions by the courts or the legislature by neglect or failure to represent/act on behalf of the citizen egregious.
Residents of land-lease communities (LLC) are proud Americans!. We are retirees, the elderly, persons with disabilities, retired vets, and working families...We pay our own way, and only ask we are treated fairly, with respect, and have an equal opportunity to defend and protect our rights and property... and to be justly recognized for our achievements by PA law!
As working families we are employed as police officers, firefighters, nurses, store clerks, bakers, carpenters, landscapers, school and county employees, postal workers, maintenance engineers, hairdressers, small business operators, truck drivers, retired and disabled vets, …folks who are the back bone of America and its economy...and as retirees and the elderly... we are grandparents and great grandparents…and many of us are infirm and seriously ill, all struggling to retain the dignity of home ownership, working for the American dream.
** Residents have to ask why there are so many concerns regarding their living in MH communities (known as "land-lease communities"). The reality is residents may be dealing with serious infractions affecting them, their living, and well-being; infractions out of keeping with resident constitutional rights. Residents reminded they are responsible for protecting their rights!!! These concerns lead to the question:
"Is there conspiracy to defraud PA's residents and elderly living in LLC?"
Conspiracy; Plot, Scheme, or Plan...
Defraud: Deceive (misinform), Swindle (rip-off), Cheat, Trick, or Fleece (Take for a ride)
Please visit links at left "WHAT IS THE REAL DEAL?" and "AMBUSHED - BAMBOOZLED - ROBBED".
And our links on forming a HOA and more....
MEANWHILE, WE HAVE BEGUN THE PROCESS OF SEEKING IMPROVED LEGISLATION. A task force has been formed and meetings held with legislators to discuss and review possible legislative proposals to better protect residents owning property in land-lease communities (LLC). Indications are very hopeful that better legislation can be framed and will be submitted to the House in future months - MORE details will be posted soon; BUT THE SUPPORT OF RESIDENTS, AS IS THEIR CONSTITUTIONAL RESPONSIBILITY, IS ESSENTIAL IF PASSAGE IS TO BE OBTAINED. (PLEASE READ the Pres Message on this site)
HB 2212 (ACT 80) came into law March 2011. For more information see the link at this site.
AN AMENDMENT IS BEING WORKED ON TO CLOSE THE "LOOP-HOLE" IN ACT 80- THAT EXEMPTS 30 DAY LEASES FROM MANY OF THE REQUIRED DISCLOSURES, INCLUDING EXPLAINING RENT INCREASES. PARK OWNERS FAVOR 30 DAY LEASES FOR THIS REASON.
Rep. Freeman plans to reintroduce his House Bill this session, providing residents "the right to purchase" (their community) in the event the Park Owner plans on selling. This Bill also includes for limited compensation to residents loosing their homes under "change in use" (of the land)
SB26 sponsored by Sen. Greenleaf and Sen. Browne introduces "rent stabilization" and will provide residents a mechanism to contest rent increases where unreasonable.
Additional Bills anticipated in the near future include better protections for the "right of assembly" and operating a Home Owners Association; and to provide "Park Closure Insurance" based on a small premium - to protect residents against loss and financial ruin.
The PA Coalition of MH Residents (PAMHOA) is working with legislators and the legislative task force on these Bills to ensure the best possible provisions to meet resident concerns. For more information please contact PAMHOA.
RESIDENT SUPPORT FOR NEW LEGISLATION TO BETTER PROTECT RESIDENTS IS ESSENTIAL. WILL YOU HELP?
PROBLEMS FACED BY Manufactured Homes Owners living in land-lease communities (LLC) are common throughout the USA. However, how those issues are addressed varies from State to State.
Few residents of LLC are aware of the extensive risks they face and in many instances do not recognize the financial disadvantages affecting them.
FOR EXAMPLE: WHO CAN AFFORD A $2,000.00 INCREASE IN ANNUAL LOT RENT IN A FEW SHORT YEARS - WITH NO ADDED SERVICES OR OTHER BENEFITS? MANY RESIDENTS ON A FIXED INCOME!!!
PA legislation affords minimum protection, and residents can be faced with eviction, unrestricted rent increases, and even the loss of their entire equity invested in their home, or very substantial losses or costs to keep their home.
DO NOT LET THIS HAPPEN TO YOU!
Every day, the high cost of lot rents and property taxes combined with lost employment or other cause such as illness are taking people to the brink with little help available.
IT DOES NOT NEED TO BE THIS WAY!
Careful and responsible people can be subjected to conditions outside of their control when not only are legal fees unaffordable, but few legal rights exist to protect them...
COURTS LIMITED BY OUT OF DATE LAWS!
IF YOU ARE "low-income" AND FACED WITH A SERIOUS PROBLEM CONTACT YOUR LOCAL "LEGAL-AID" OFFICE IMMEDIATELY FOR ASSISTANCE.
- AS AN OWNER OF A MANUFACTURED HOME IN AN LLC YOU CAN BE EVICTED AT SHORT NOTICE
- HAVE NO PLACE TO MOVE YOUR HOME
- PAY THOUSANDS OF DOLLARS IF A SITE CAN BE FOUND (Relocation costs can be as high as twenty thousand dollars, or more!)
- BE FACED WITH UNSUBSTANTIATED AND EVER INCREASING LOT FEES
- FALL PREY TO LARGE CORPORATIONS OR REITS TURNING YOUR HOME SITE INTO A PROFIT MAKING MACHINE
- YOU ARE DENIED THE OPPORTUNITY TO PURCHASE YOUR HOME SITE, TO PROTECT YOURSELF AND KEEP YOUR HOME AFFORDABLE
ALERT...ALERT...ALERT... YOU MAY HAVE RECEIVED A NEW AND SIGNIFICANTLY CHANGED LEASE SAID TO BE DUE TO ACT 8O. MANY RESIDENTS HAVE FOUND THESE NEW LEASES MAY BE ILLEGAL AND UNSUITABLE. A DEFECTIVE LEASE SHOULD NOT BE SIGNED. IF YOU ALREADY HAVE A WRITTEN LEASE, ACT 80 DOES NOT SAY YOU MUST HAVE A NEW LEASE. PA LAW ALSO PROVIDES THAT YOUR LEASE IS A CONTINUING LEASE. THE NEW ACT TOOK EFFECT MARCH 18 2011; BUT DUE TO REPORTS RECEIVED THE COALITION RECOMMENDS A NEW LEASE SHOULD BE REVIEWED BY AN ATTORNEY BEFORE SIGNING. WE ARE CONSULTING WITH OUR LEGAL TEAM TO DETERMINE WHAT RESIDENTS SHOULD DO TO REPLY TO UNEXPECTED DEMANDS BY PARK OWNERS. MOST RESIDENTS RECEIVING THESE LEASES CANNOT BE EXPECTED TO UNDERSTAND THEIR RIGHTS UNDER THE NEW LAW WHEN LAWYERS DO NOT YET KNOW HOW THE NEW LAW WILL AFFECT YOU.
AMONG OTHER THINGS, THE NEW LAW ALLOWS YOU TO NEGOTIATE THE LEASE TERMS INCLUDING A 12 MONTH LEASE, WHEN THE PARK OWNER MUST PROVIDE YOU WITH SPECIFIC SERVICES. A 30 DAY LEASE EXEMPTS THE PARK OWNER FROM THAT OBLIGATION. ALSO YOUR NEW LEASE LIKELY INCLUDES CHANGES AFFECTING YOUR STATUS UNDER LAW - THE NEW ACT 80 EFFECTIVE ON MARCH 18, 2011 REQUIRES YOU TO HAVE 60 DAYS NOTICE OF LEASE CHANGES - NOT A FEW DAYS NOTICE AS PARK OWNERS ARE OFTEN GIVING TO EXECUTE A NEW LEASE. SEE WHAT WE SAY ELSEWHERE ON THIS SITE CONCERNING SIGNING LEASES AND YOUR OBLIGATIONS. ALWAYS OBTAIN PROFESSIONAL OR KNOWLEDGEABLE ADVICE BEFORE SIGNING A NEW LEASE - A LEGAL AND BINDING CONTRACT.
AGREEING TO A NEW LEASE MAY FOREVER TAKE AWAY YOUR HARD EARNED BENEFITS UNDER THE NEW ACT AND LAW (ACT 80)
IF NOTHING ELSE, IF YOU BELIEVE YOU MUST SIGN A NEW LEASE WITHOUT AMPLE TIME TO REVIEW AND CONSULT WITH A LAWYER OR OTHER KNOWLEDGEABLE PERSON (NEW LEASE TERMS MAY AFFECT YOUR LEGAL RIGHTS AND ENTITLEMENTS) ENDORSE WITH YOUR SIGNATURE "This lease signed under PROTEST". (because, you have no opportunity to negotiate or complain) ALSO A COMPLAINT CAN AND SHOULD BE FILED WITH THE OFFICE OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL (asking to be notified of defective leases). WE WILL ADVISE YOU FURTHER AS SOON AS POSSIBLE. (see our legal department comment below and new link "SIGNING A NEW LEASE"
BETTER STILL, REFUSE TO SIGN A NEW LEASE UNTIL YOU HAVE AN OPPORTUNITY TO FULLY UNDERSTAND NEW LEASE TERMS AND INSIST A NEW LEASE FULLY COMPLIES WITH ACT 80 AND PA STATUTES. YOU CAN PROVIDE A COPY OF YOUR LEASE AND ANY ATTACHMENTS - SUCH AS REVISED COMMUNITY GUIDELINES - TO THE COALITION (Marked for the attention of the "Legal Department") FOR REVIEW; OR CONTACT "REGIONAL HOUSING LEGAL SERVICES" FOR THEIR HELP (Contact information available form the Coalition offices); AND INFORM YOUR PARK OWNER YOU WILL EXECUTE THE AGREEMENT SUBJECT TO OBTAINING ADVICE. Leases seen so far need amendments to protect your rights and property.
NOTE: ACT 80 REQUIRES YOU TO HAVE A SIGNED LEASE (see our comments on negotiating lease terms) AND NEW LEASES UNDER THE NEW LAW REQUIRE YOU TO BE GIVEN 60 DAYS ADVANCE NOTICE OF LEASE CHANGES AND 30 DAYS TO REVIEW AND COMPLETE. DO NOT BE BAMBOOZELD!
PLEASE READ WHAT OUR LEGAL DEPARTMENT SAYS ABOUT SIGNING LEASES, AND "PREEMPTIVE LEASES" AS REPORTED TO THE COALITION IF YOU MAY HAVE RECEIVED A SURPRISE LEASE. PLEASE VISIT THE LINK "SIGNING A NEW LEASE" AT LEFT.
WHAT CAN BE DONE?
PA legislation protects your right to operate a Home Owners Association.A HOA is the first building block in protecting your rights. Many law makers are waiting to hear from residents about their concerns which may not be limited to those mentioned above.
There are many concerns that can be readily corrected but meanwhile put you at risk, or cost you money - money you cannot afford.YOU should contact your State Representative to express your concern.
YOU can also speak with the office of the Attorney General to ask how your rights are protected.
If you are faced with an urgent problem such as eviction or harassment contact "Legal Aid". (Residents should always comply with Community guidelines.)
Other protections for your community can be obtained through zoning and local government - contact PAMHOA for more information.BUT MOST OF ALL you MUST support efforts of legislators and others both in government and outside government trying to change the extreme and urgent situation faced by MH owners in the Commonwealth. YOU SHOULD contact "The PA Coalition of MH Residents" (PAMHOA) indicating your support, and ensuring your community is responsibly represented. We at PAMHOA will guide you and let you know how you can obtain help.
We recognize many properties are owned by persons with disabilities, retired persons on a fixed income, and the elderly, as well as working families all equally entitled to be represented in their common concerns and interests. And, to remove the stigma of owning a "trailer" as the home has a "title" - a false concept unrelated to the majority of homes in land-lease communities (LLC), their cost to purchase, and in being equal in quality to stick built homes. Manufactured Housing (modern ranchers) often the most suitable choice or housing option to meet owner needs.
We are working to protect your investment; removing forced and false depreciation; and to make available INSURANCE that will protect you against the cost of eviction due to a "change in land use". We would like to see affordable financing for older units; and to re-visit the basis for property taxes, and when property taxes apply to be on a fair basis.
IF YOU THINK YOUR TAXES ARE TOO HIGH, APPEAL YOUR LOCAL TAXING AUTHORITY TO CHANGE YOUR ASSESSMENT. IMPORTANTLY PA's "Common Level Ratio" CHANGES AND THIS COULD SIGNIFICANTLY AFFECT YOUR TAX OBLIATION. IF SOME TIME SINCE LAST ASSESSED YOU COULD CUT YOUR TAXES SIGNIFICANTLY - CHECK IT OUT!Nor are we stopping there as residents in LLC need to be better informed of their rights and provided the resources to protect those rights; including obtaining better representation (along with legislation), and removing FEAR AND INTIMIDATION (by use of the threat of eviction) when trying to form a "Home Owners Association" in their community, (and as applied to enforce none conforming leases, and exorbitant rents destroying residents investment and security), and to have better access to an appeal process when needed in responding to the actions of the Park Owner.
For more information contact PAMHOA and BE SURE TO SUPPORT REGIONAL AND STATE-WIDE EFFORTS!
CHANGES to help protect LLC residents and restore fairness might include:
THE RIGHT OF FIRST REFUSAL
THE RIGHT TO PURCHASE
THE RIGHT TO REASONABLE LOT FEES (Under resident's contracts)
PARK CLOSURE INSURANCE
RECOGNITION OF "REAL" PROPERTY
OPPORTUNITY TO ADJUDICATE DISPUTES
IMPROVED "TRAINING" OF COMMUNITY EMPLOYEES
(Manufactured Homes are not in any sense motor vehicles. They do not deteriorate as a vehicle deteriorates becoming obsolete after a few years or need daily maintenance. To apply depreciation and to "title" as vehicles is a false premise and damaging to the home owner's investment - Manufactured Homes are not built or sold to be vehicles.)
ASSISTANCE IN MAKING FINANCING AVAILABLE FOR OLDER HOMES TO FACILITATE RE-SALES (Refinancing, Equity loans, or other lending is not available on older properties - typically after 15 years, and where available interest rates are considerably higher than for traditional homes, further depreciating property values).
IMPROVE COMMUNICATION TO LLC RESIDENTS INFORMING ON THE OPTIONS OR FACILITIES AVAILABLE TO THEM UNDER LAW.
IMPROVE ACCESS TO AJUDICATION (including Dispute Resolution and use of a "Hearing Board") TO APPEAL PARK OWNER ACTIONS, INCLUDING UNSUBSTANTIATED LOT RENT INCREASES, AND TO ENCOURAGE THE JUST MITIGATION OF COMPLAINTS. (Residents placed under duress)
PROVIDE FOR RESTORING EQUITY AND BALANCE, RECOGNIZING LLC RESIDENTS INVESTMENT AND PROPERTY OWNERSHIP (Residents first enter into a lease, forgoing title to the land based on the economic benefit or advantage to them. Any subsequent contract (lease) entered into, or extension of that contract (lease) must reasonably recognize the entitlements of both parties; and should not be based on duress. If needing to be displaced (relocation of homes) the economic and practical solution should reasonably provide for all parties and not be designed to unduly destroy resident's wealth or equity).
RESIDENTS TO BE ENTITLED TO "MAKE AN OFFER" AND NEGOTIATE PARK PURCHASE IN GOOD FAITH (as any other business where appropriately organized and represented)
Subject to arriving at suited legislation, the priority of these concerns may change.