MHProNews.com has learned from Robert S. Coldren of Hart, King & Coldren in Santa Ana, California, a Vista (CA) Superior Court judge’s ruling may help MHC owners sell their land if they cannot earn enough from renting home sites. According to utsandiego rent control has been in effect in Oceanside MHCs since 1984. Since 2008, the ordinance and several court rulings have prevented Cavalier Mobile Estates in Oceanside from, first, raising rents, and then from selling the home sites to the residents. Judge Jacqueline Stern ruled the Oceanside City Council overstepped its bounds in preventing Cavalier from selling home sites in the last legal tug-of-war. The city is appealing this ruling, but may have to redo a hearing that initially denied Cavalier the right to sell its property. Cavalier’s attorney Mark Alpert says, “Their rents are so low its indefensible.” With rents running from 362 to $410 a month, the owners want to divide the community into 340 individual sites. Meanwhile, the city council voted to replace rent control with vacancy decontrol last May, which would allow rents to increase only if the home site or manufactured home changed hands. Community residents and supporters have garnered enough signatures to force a citywide vote, scheduled for June 2012. While residents on fixed incomes are fearful for their ability to remain in the communities, Councilman Jerome Kern and Mr. Alpert both see MHC owners rushing to sell their real estate if rent control is maintained.
(Graphic credit: MapQuest/NAVTEQ—star pinpoints Cavalier Mobile Estates)