[HISTORY: Adopted by Dutchess County as indicated in article histories. Amendments noted where applicable.]
Manufactured home parks — See Real Property Law § 233.
[Adopted 6-12-1989 by L.L. No. 3-1989]
This Legislature hereby finds and declares that there is a shortage of available space, both inside and outside manufactured home parks; that a particular housing problem exists for homeowners residing in manufactured home parks, wherein there is the potential for serious dislocation of families and loss of equity through the sale of manufactured homes; that manufactured home park residents frequently lack the resources to purchase new homes or move existing homes; that in Dutchess County there are over 70 manufactured home parks in which several thousand manufactured home owners reside. These manufactured home owners are a unique combination of homeowner and tenant since they own their homes, but rent the lot on which it is situated. The present vacancy rate of lots in manufactured home parks in Dutchess County is less than 2% and as vacancies have occurred, some park owners have required that only new homes may be placed on those lots. These circumstances make it imperative that laws be enacted which protect manufactured home owners from arbitrary eviction and guarantee their right to sell their homes in place. Without such protections for manufactured home owners, their investment in a home in Dutchess County is fraught with risk.
Manufactured homes are generally more affordable than conventionally built homes and this Legislature wants to encourage the ownership of manufactured homes under conditions which afford protection of the expectation of such home owners that the equity in their homes will grow over time as long as they maintain their homes in good condition. This article, which should be read in conjunction with New York State Real Property Law § 233, is based on a determination by this Legislature that the current state law to protect manufactured home owners is inadequate to protect the rights of manufactured home owners to stay in parks and sell their homes in place when they leave.
As used in this article, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
- In addition to its ordinary meaning, the cessation or nonrenewal of a lease or of the occupancy of a manufactured home or from a manufactured home park as a result of an act of a manufactured home park owner or operator.
- MANUFACTURED HOME OWNER
- One who holds title to a manufactured home and rents a space for it in a manufactured home park.
- MANUFACTURED HOME PARK
- A contiguous parcel of privately owned land which is used for the accommodation of three or more manufactured homes occupied for year-round living.
- MANUFACTURED HOME PARK OWNER OR OPERATOR
- The person in charge of a manufactured home park. This term shall include, but not be limited to, the owner of the land, the manager, assistant manager or any other person in charge of the operations or activities of a manufactured home park.
A manufactured home park owner or operator may not evict a manufactured home owner other than for the following reasons:
The manufactured home owner has defaulted in the payment of rent and a proper demand has been made for such delinquent rent. On payment of such delinquent rent, together with allowable costs, including interest and attorney's fees if so provided in the lease, any action instituted for nonpayment of rent shall be terminated.
The manufactured home or rented space is used for any illegal trade or business.
The manufactured home owner is in violation of a federal, state or local law or ordinance which may be deemed detrimental to the safety and welfare of any persons residing in the manufactured home park.
The manufactured home owner or anyone occupying the manufactured home is in violation of any lease term or lawful rule or regulation established by the manufactured home park owner or operator and has continued in violation for more than 10 days after the manufactured home park owner or operator has given written notice of such violation to the manufactured home owner, setting forth the lease term or rule or regulation violated and directing that the manufactured home owner correct or cease the violation within 10 days of the receipt of said notice. On expiration of such period, should the violation continue or should the manufactured home owner or anyone occupying the manufactured home be deemed a persistent violator of the lease term or rules and regulations, the manufactured home park owner or operator may serve written notice on the manufactured home owner directing that he/she vacate the premises within 30 days of the receipt of said notice.
The manufactured home park owner or operator proposes a change in the use of the land comprising the manufactured home park, or a portion thereof, on which the manufactured home is located, from manufactured home lot rentals to some other use, provided the manufactured home owner is given at least six months' written notice, or longer if a longer term remains in a rental agreement, of the proposed change of use and the manufactured home owners need to secure other accommodations.
No manufactured home owner shall be denied a continuance or renewal of a lease so long as he or she has, during the period of occupancy, complied with the terms of the lease and the rules and regulations of the manufactured home park then in effect.
No manufactured home park owner or operator shall deny the manufactured home owner the right to sell a manufactured home occupying a lot in a manufactured home park solely on the ground of the age, size or model of such manufactured home.
Nothing herein shall prevent the manufactured home park owner or operator from adopting reasonable rules requiring manufactured homes to be presentable in appearance, free from damage, painted, skirted, clean, properly landscaped, structurally sound and from enforcing general reasonable park rules to that effect, including the right to evict in accordance with § 205-3 of this article.
No manufactured home park owner or operator shall deny any manufactured home owner the right to sell his/her manufactured home in the manufactured home park or require the manufactured home owner or subsequent purchaser to remove the manufactured home from the manufactured home park based solely on the sale thereof, provided the manufactured home owner shall give the manufactured home park owner or operator 20 days' written notice of his/her intention to sell. The manufactured home park owner or operator may reserve the right to approve the purchaser of said manufactured home as a tenant in the park, but such approval shall not be unreasonably withheld. Approval of a purchaser must be granted or denied within 30 days from the date the manufactured home park owner or operator is notified of the name, address and information as to the credit worthiness of the prospective purchaser.
If the manufactured home park owner or operator fails to act within the thirty-day period, the purchaser shall have been deemed approved.
If the manufactured home park owner or operator unreasonably withholds permission, the manufactured home owner may sue for any damages resulting therefrom. If it is found by the court that the manufactured home park owner or operator acted in bad faith in withholding such permission, the manufactured home owner may recover the costs of the proceedings and attorney's fees in addition to any other available remedy at law or in equity.
No manufactured home park owner or operator shall withhold approval of a sale of a manufactured home by refusal to sign an agreement with the lending institution for the prospective purchaser, or charge a fee for signing such agreement, that permits the manufactured home to remain in the park in case of a default by the purchaser in the payment of the loan for the manufactured home so long as the lending institution guarantees payment of the rent and other legal fees to the manufactured home park owner or operator and upkeep of the manufactured home and the lot during such time as the lending institution procures a subsequent purchaser for the manufactured home who meets the reasonable approval of the owner or operator.
No manufactured home park owner or operator shall, as a condition of a lease of space in a manufactured home park, require a manufactured home owner, currently residing in a park, to purchase a manufactured home from a particular manufactured home dealer or from the manufactured home park owner or operator.
[Amended 12-7-2010 by L.L. No. 2-2011]
This article may be enforced by the Dutchess County Department of Behavioral and Community Health, the Dutchess County Attorney, or by any other governmental agency authorized to secure compliance by bringing an action in any court of competent jurisdiction for an injunction to prevent the violation or threatened violation thereof.
A civil action in the name of the governmental agency may be commenced to recover a civil penalty in the amounts prescribed by this article. Such action may be released, settled or compromised by the Director of the Dutchess County Department of Behavioral and Community Health, the Dutchess County Attorney, or his/her assistant, or the appropriate person of any other government agency.
A violation or failure to comply with any provision of this article may be raised as a complete defense, or as a counterclaim, by a manufactured home owner in any action brought by a manufactured home park owner or operator in a court proceeding in Dutchess County.