Mobile Home Financing

Hello everyone

Long time no chat. I have a question for the guys/ gals who rehab mh’s. I have been presented with an offer to buy a big m/h on 1 acre. Appraisals on the low end are approx. $85,000. Purchase price $40,000. Needs approx $14,000 in repairs. I have a hardmoney guy who will loan the $$ on it for purchase and repairs contingent upon me finding a lender who will do the permanent financing at the end when I refi. I have spoken to about 4 people I know and no one will touch it. Back end is to rehab it and rent it. This area has NO rentals - no houses, trailers or anything available so renting should not be a problem at about $900+/ mnth.

So, my question is - how do I find a “traditional” lender to work with on refi-ing m/h’s after the rehab is done? Also, what about seasoning issues?


  • Rob


Financing on used manufactured housing is difficult to find because they depreciate rather than appreciate. It is almost impossible to find funds for investing in them as rental properties. I would think long and hard about renting a trailer. The people who tend to rent trailers don’t care about them whatsoever. Since trailers are made of light weight materials, they tear up instead of standing up to normal wear and tear. I had looked into putting a trailer on a piece of property that I own and have decided that I’ll build a stick built house instead. I saw one fellow that moved in a new trailer on some property that he had. He rented it for 6 months at $800 per month (rents in the area are typically about $700 per month for older houses) then the tenant moved out. He had to do several thousand dollars worth of repair afterwards. He now has the property for sale. Everyone that I have heard of making money with trailers have bought them real cheap, fixed them up and sold them owner finance for retail price at a high interest rate.



Thanks for the feedback! :slight_smile: I actually have someone lined up who wants to move into it and then buy it from me when they get their credit back in line (1-2 years) and then they want to keep it as a rental.

My thoughts were pretty much for the short term profit and of course helping these people who are my friends. I was also thinking of doing a wrap motgage as well, any thoughts there?

Thanks again.

Buy & read books by Lonnie Scruggs. The one I recall is “Deals on Wheels”. He also wrote at least one other, title unrecalled. He knows trailer-mobile home-manufactured and how to make a buck on them. I’ve tried to apply his ideas to low-cost houses with only mediocre success, but I betcha he has it right for MHs.
As Wilson-no-relation said, they depreciate, so are harder to work with.
Good luck,

Thanks Ray. I completely fogot about Ronnie’s books. :slight_smile:

Exactly right. Get DOW’s and this problem could be solved quickly. I’m rehabbing a MH this weekend that I bought for 700 bucks. Needs about 700 bucks to make it right and I will sell it for 6K with owner financing. Owner financing is a much better fit then renting. The owner will have a vested interest in the home and to treat it better than a renter would. Good luck,



In my opinion, EVERYONE is off base here.

#1. Lonnie’s books deal with homes in parks - this one is on an acre. There is a book on this, and I highly recommend it: Investing In Mobile Homes With Land, available exclusively here:

I know these guys personally, and they are dead on with their system.

#2. With all due respect to the Moderator, I completely disagree with WilsonTaylor. This deal depends on comps, not how a MH is constructed, or the erroneous fact that only trailer trash will rent a MH. You state that appraisals come in @ 85K. Needing 14K in repairs, what will it comp out at? I’m betting that it would be higher than 85K. And even if not, 40 + 14 = 54, and compared to 85K ARV (if ARV is what the appraisal is based on) You’re still way ahead. Get it rented, and get a 70-80% mortgage against the property. It cashflows, you get the tax-free money (proceeds from the loan) to pay off your HML, or wherever the purchase and rehab $$ came from, there’s some left over to buy another, you get depreciation, and your property appreciates. BTW, how bad is it to need 14K in rehab???

Impossible to find investing funds? Bah. Start asking local banks/credit unions. Even higher interest non-standard lenders (American General, HFC, et al) would be better than HM. You may have to ask around, but there is money out there for an improved property consisting of a double-wide ATTACHED TO REAL ESTATE!! That is the lender’s security.

In today’s hot housing market, there IS appreciation in these land/home deals.

I have been doing Lonnie Deals for several years, and over the last couple of years, have also been doing L/H deals. I think that this is a deal - jump on it - after due diligence, of course: septic OK? water OK? no skeletons in the closet? The face value that you present, if accurate, describes a deal I would take right now.

Where is it located?? ;-)3

Have you considered pulling the existing trailer off the property (sell it or give it away) and replacing it with a nice 3 Bdrm/2 Bath manufactured home? As you now know, most banks won’t touch an older trailer and definitely treat anything prior to 1974 like the plague.

But a newly manufactured home is put in on a fixed foundation and much easier to qualify for a loan to a new buyer. Visit your loacl M/Home dealer and check out their full package prices. You’ll already save money on the fact that the utilities are already in place, which is one of the big investments people usually have to do on unimproved land.

The three M/Homes down my street were all put in by a friend of ours who made money on all three deals. (And he had to pay for utilities brought in.) Check it out.


I’m glad that you disagree and are confident enough in yourself to state your opinion. A lot (if not most) of the people who make big bucks in any industry do so because they see what others miss. The point that I was trying to make is that I have not found investors that have been happy renting manufactured housing. I am sure that there some that are in this great country, I just do not happen to know them. I personally find that rental properties of any type seem to have more “wear and tear” on them than owner occupied properties or maybe it is just that they call me instead of fixing the problem themselves. This trend along with the fact that trailers are made with lighter weight materials seems to me to add up to even more repairs. But on the other hand, it all depends on the renters themselves. I guess that I misspoke when I said that " The people who tend to rent trailers don’t care about them whatsoever." I hope that I have not offended anyone by my inadvertant slander. I apologize if I did. My take on the situation is that (for me) buying this property for rental might be more trouble than it is worth, but it might be a great deal to buy, fix up and sell, especially with owner finance or lease option. The exit strategy can make all the difference in the world.


Thanks everone for the great responses! Steve - WA hit it right on. Here are some more details since the original post:

4bed, 2 bath
Built 2002
Dining, family and living rooms (big place!)
laundry room and pantry off kitchen
.75 acres
neighbors are trailers but it appears that the owners actually do take care of them. No junk in the yards, yards are all mowed, stone walk ways, etc. Maybe because they all appear to be on close to 1 acre lots - who knows.
Has underground water and electric already hooked up. Previous owner used a temporary septic container and was caught. So, they were told to install the septic system but never had the money to do it.

m/h next door just sold for $85,000 but is smaller (about 1500sf)


offered $40,000
settled on $42,500
Appraisal should be $85k- $90K


Septic system: $8000. perk test and permit already done.
Carpet: $4000. Previous owner had cats. If I buy the materials I have an installer who will install it for a couple of hundred dollars.
Mow the yard: weeds are a mile high.
Misc unknowns: $2000

Total repairs: $14000

So, even though I’m not a huge m/h fan this one really seems to work. Now it does help that I already have someone ready to move-in who wants to rent it now or buy it (owner financing now - maybe, or buy outright in a year or two after their credit is better - sub 500 FICO now :o). This looks like a pretty good deal and I am excited about it.

  • Rob



I am here for the first time, and I am a brand new want to be investor. You seem to know a lot about mobile homes, how do I find good deals?
I like the idea of buying them cheap, fixing them and sale them owner finance ???


Norma by all means buy Lonnoie Scruggs book Deals on Wheels and Making Money with Mobile Homes". They are a great deucation.

Thank you Barbara I will look into it


I got it and read about 1/2 way so far. An interesting read. I have been looking through my paper and a couple other pubs. Nothing great so far. Saw a couple ads for homes in the 7-10k range. Those were the cheapest thus far. I am in Vegas and am not sure about how many MH parks we have.

I do know that the new law passed by the supreme court is scary. Here we have one park that just got notified to move it for a new development. I think the city said they would tow the home to a new park and drop em off lol Basically it is a situation of move it or lose it literally.

I agree with what was said about this being a great deal. One to jump on for sure.
On another note, there are banks out there who will still loan on MHs in parks even. They just aren’t easy to find. However while working on one of my new approaches to mobile home investing I found an owner in a park who had a 11% loan from a bank in New York. I could dig up the info if anyone wants to know. Might be good details to have. Not sure of all the details of how it went through but it floored me.

Hello all, I am just getting started myself.
I know of 2 mobilehomes

  1. could pick up for $3000, 2 bd single needs some repairs, it sets in a park with $289 mo. rent as well as it is right next to a rail road track. Thought either owner financing or L/O. :-\ I was concerned about getting it insured if I treat it as a L/O. What do you think???

  2. 1993 doublewide with lot. Appraised for $98K owes 60K with payments of $ renting it now for $800.00
    They will sell it for $75K.
    I personally do not have any money to work with for a down payment for financing. Looking for something creative…please help :slight_smile:
    Thank you

Great info folks!