Buying or selling a home in a manufactured-housing co-op

Jay Mathena in his front yard

ROC-NH logoIf you are considering buying a manufactured home, you should consider all of the benefits of resident-owned communities.

Co-op communities are owned and run by the homeowners. Residents have greater control over rules and bylaws, access to better mortgage financing (which increases the value of their homes) and more financial security because they have a say in lot fees and park improvements.

Financing

Manufactured-home owners who live in resident-owned communities in New Hampshire and borrowers who want to purchase a home in those communities can apply for a Welcome Home Loan from the New Hampshire Community Loan Fund. Fixed-rate loans for purchase, home equity and refinancing for debt consolidation or home improvement are available.

Residents living in the following six co-ops may also qualify for conventional mortgage financing through the Community Loan Fund’s pilot program with St. Mary’s Bank and Merrimack County Savings Bank:

  • Camp Sargent Road Cooperative, Merrimack
  • Lakes Region Cooperative, Belmont
  • Lilac Drive Cooperative, Raymond
  • Medvil Cooperative, Goffstown
  • Otarnic Pond Cooperative, Hudson
  • Tamworth Pines Cooperative, Tamworth

For more information about this program, please contact:

If your community has not been certified for this loan program, we strongly encourage you to ask your Board of Directors to contact Tara Reardon at ROC-NH™ by email or at 224-6669.

Membership

Purchasing a home in a resident-owned community requires that you be accepted by the cooperative’s membership committee.

Like any landlord, the co-op must abide by federal fair housing laws and cannot discriminate against any protected classes. However, a co-op can reject applicants with criminal backgrounds or insufficient credit or income.

Once you have a purchase and sales agreement on a home, you should immediately apply for membership through the co-op office by filling out a short form and agreeing to both a credit and criminal background check. The co-op is required to approve or deny membership within 14 days of accepting your application. You will need to be accepted for membership and must receive an executed consent form from the co-op prior to closing on the sale of your home.

Ready to start? The Northern New England Real Estate Network Web site has a searchable database. Click on "Mobile Home" in the "Type" box.

Selling a home

Co-op members who have the best results selling their homes, both in terms of market value and ease of selling, are active and positive members of their communities. Attractive, well-organized and well-managed communities with happy members generally attract more enthusiastic buyers. So the best thing you can do to help to sell your home is insure that your community is a great place to live. Buyers sense and appreciate the enthusiasm people have for their communities.

A reputable local Realtor can be a great resource when you are selling your home. Ask your neighbors for referrals and try to find a Realtor who is familiar with your resident-owned community and who has experience selling manufactured homes. A Realtor can help you determine the value of your home, advise you on market conditions and make suggestions for what you should or should not do to your home prior to listing it for sale.

Before hiring a Realtor, be sure you understand the agency's relationship with you, the Realtor's commission schedule and what specifically they are going to do to expose your home to as many potential buyers as possible. Remember that real estate commissions are always negotiable, so interviewing more than one Realtor may serve you well.

Also, be sure your Realtor understands all of the financing options for your home, has membership application materials for your community in her or his  office, and understands your community's membership process.

Remember, people buy a lifestyle as much as they buy a home, so making sure that your community has a reputation for being a great place to live will pay off in a higher home value.

ROC-NH is a program of the New Hampshire Community Loan Fund, Inc. and a ROC USA® Certified Technical Assistance Provider
ROC-NH is a registered service mark of ROC USA®, LLC