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Mobile home residents explore option for purchasing neighborhood

Residents of the St. Vrain Village Mobile Home Park asked lots of questions Monday about purchasing their neighborhood. ROC USA was there to provide some answers.
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The St. Vrain Village Mobile Home Park behind Twin Peaks Charter School. (Photo by Macie May)

Residents of a second Longmont mobile home park have decided to pursue an option to purchase the property themselves.

Buying St. Vrain Village Mobile Home Park was discussed during a meeting Monday evening in the parking lot of Twin Peaks Charter School, a stone’s throw from the park. Residents were recently notified that park owner, St. Vrain Investors LLC, has put the property up for sale.

The meeting was organized by Andy Kadlec, program director for ROC USA, which, according to its website, is a nonprofit “social venture scaling resident ownership of manufactured home communities.”

 

IMG-2975Andy Kadlec stands so residents of St. Vrain Village community can hear him talk about how they could potentially buy the neighborhood property. (Photo by Macie May)

 

Kadlec rallied residents to explain that Boulder nonprofit Thistle works with communities such as St. Vrain Village to purchase the land on which manufactured homes sit by forming a co-op and assisting the co-op in purchasing the property.

Of the 130 homes in the St. Vrain Village community, 68 were represented at the meeting. After listening to Kadlec for most of an hour and a half, 52 decided to vote to go forward by committing to work with Thistle and ROC USA.

 

IMG-2973Residents gather in the Twin Peak Charter School parking lot to learn more about the potential purchase of the St. Vrain Village Mobile Home Park. (Photo by Macie May)

 

St. Vrain Village resident Shawn Calloway said he voted against working with ROC USA because he felt the organization did not provide enough information on the process and left him with too many questions.

"I was surprised to see so many in the community jump on board so quickly with the little bit of information that was given at this meeting," Calloway said.

However, Calloway did say since the community voted to begin work with ROC USA, he would continue to participate in meetings to learn more about the possible future of his mobile home community.

In February 2019, residents of Longmont Mobile Home Park bought their neighborhood for $3.2 million through the ROC model. The community contains 36 lots.

The ROC model includes residents forming a co-op to purchase the land. Then ROC USA assists the co-op in negotiating, purchasing and financing the loan for the property, according to Kadlec. Residents who form the co-op decide the rules, membership fees, lot rents and more. Manufactured home communities that go this route often see fewer rent hikes than commercially owned communities, according to Kadlec.

Kadlec also told residents Monday that if they purchased the land, they would not have to worry the community would be sold and possibly rezoned, forcing them to move.

With residents deciding to look at options within the ROC model, Kadlec said the next step is more meetings, including one to hear a testimonial from a neighborhood the organization has worked with in the past, and potentially one covering St. Vrain Village financial information.

IMG-2978Residents signing documents to begin the process of potentially buying neighborhood property. (Photo by Macie May)