In Colorado, House Bill 17-1354 is music to the ears of manufactured home owners and residents throughout the state.
According to the Reporter Herald, the bill would help prevent residents from losing their homes over delinquent tax bills they didn’t know were unpaid, and is one step closer to becoming law.
The Colorado House Local Government Committee unanimously passed the bill this week.
The bill, introduced by Rep. KC Becker, (D-Boulder), would change the process for county treasurers when collecting delinquent taxes on mobile homes (pre 1976, in a permanent location) and manufactured homes by giving treasurers flexibility on collection.
It will also allow county treasurers to declare tax liens on the homes as county-held to try to address title issues with the homes and prevent them from being sold to investors.
The current law requires county treasurers to collect delinquent taxes by court action or putting mobile homes up for a tax lien and potentially being sold, leading to the eviction of the residents.
“Some of the issues have stemmed from residents who are either renters or not the first owners of the home who receive the tax bills in the previous owners’ names,” said Becker.
“They don’t open the mail or don’t realize a notice left at the residence is for them. It’s not about people evading taxes or even not wanting to pay their taxes. Then, their homes are put up for tax liens, sold for thousands of dollars and the residents are evicted.”
A Potentially Predatory Issue
The proposed bill also addresses another problem in an indirect way.
In what appears to be a predatory practice, investors were waiting to purchase mobile and manufactured homes via tax liens, and then reselling them at much higher rates to residents who didn’t know that they owed taxes.
Boulder County real estate broker Jill Grano became aware of the activity, and when she found out about the next tax lien sale, she bought as many liens as she could. That included 40 percent of the manufactured homes.
Then, she turned around and worked to help those same people to clear their delinquent accounts.
“A lot of times, we hear a lot about problems and coming to us for solutions, and I think there is a solution here that needs to happen,” said Rep. Jonathan Singer, (D-Longmont), thanking Grano for her efforts.
“But you actually came up with a good short-term goal as a solution, so thank you for that — working with the community to stave this off for a little while.”
For more on manufactured housing in Colorado, including the case of Denver Meadows Mobile Home and RV Park owner Shawn Lustigman and the community’s residents at odds, click here. ##
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Submitted by RC Williams to the Daily Business News for MHProNews