When you purchase a mobile home on a leased-lot, you will be asked to sign a rental agreement. State law allows you a choice of signing a month-to-month or a one year agreement. The management is also allowed to offer you a long-term (more than one year) lease. Did you know that if you sign a long-term lease you may lose valuable rent-adjustment protections?
There is currently a santa cruz county rent stabilization ordinance, in place which states that, as long as your manufactured home is located within unincorporated Santa Cruz County and is your primary residence and otherwise covered by the Rent Adjustment Ordinance, your rent may be raised only once per year and increases are limited to the criteria provided in the ordinance. Park residents have the right to challenge a rent increase and have the matter heard by a County contracted independent Hearing Officer.
However, if you sign a long-term lease, over 12 months, this ordinance will not apply to you and you lose this valuable protection.
Currently, in the incorporated areas of the County, only the Cities of Watsonville and Scotts Valley have Mobile Home Park Rent Stabilization Ordinances in places. The Cities of Santa Cruz and Capitola rescinded their rent control laws in 2004 and 2012, respectively.
To learn more about your rights as a mobile home owner, and to see the Watsonville and Scotts Valley rent stabilization ordinances, click here.
Note, much of the information here can can found in this County Bulletin.