In turning around a mobile home park project, it is necessary to bring in mobile homes and be able to sell them. It is very important to get your message out to the public to let them know that you have affordable housing in your park and that you have really easy terms, low down payments and affordable monthly payments so they can realize the American dream of purchasing and owning their own home.
One way to market and advertise your park to sell the homes is to use a billboard which will give you more exposure so that people can become familiar with your property. We have implemented billboards in Texas to garner exposure for the three mobile home parks that we have in a small town of 100,000.
You can also use door hangers and flyers. A really good target for door hangers would be apartment complexes. Hanging the door hangers on people’s apartment doors will let them know that for the same price or less that they are renting an apartment, they could go ahead and buy a mobile home. You could also put flyers on cars in busy shopping malls. These are two of the best ways to implement door hangers and flyers.
Bandit signs are a helpful way to advertise and sell as well. Bandit signs come in 18″ x 24″ or 12″ x 18″ sizes. They are inexpensive (about $1.00 – 3.00 per sign) and are meant to put along a busy road or attached to electrical poles. By putting signs along the road leading into the park and also in key traffic areas within town, you will let people know that you have affordable housing at your mobile home park. Make sure and contact your local city or county to know the rules about bandit signs (as well as real estate signs). In one city that we have a mobile home park, we are only allowed to put bandit signs out from 5pm on Friday until Sunday at midnight. At another mobile home park, the city will only allow us to put out a maximum of 5 bandit signs at any one time.
Printing “gift certificates” (that actually resemble a real gift certificate) has worked great for us. We offer $500 gift certificates and put in company workplaces, either on bulletin boards or in the lunch room. You can also hand the gift certificates out individually. Additionally, we work with local cities, counties, state offices, and corporate organizations in order to be able to include a gift certificate for $500 towards the purchase of a home in their employer benefits package.
Our park managers are also required to visit the local mobile home dealers and ask the manager to give a $500 gift certificate to anyone who is unable to qualify for financing through their mobile home dealership. Most times we can provide seller financing because our qualification requirements are probably easier for buyers to qualify then from the local mobile home park dealer. We compensate the manager of the mobile home dealership $300 – $500 for every home sold that they refer a buyer to us.
Another successful marketing tool is to have brochure boxes in front of each mobile home which list all of the benefits and details of the mobile home itself. That way, if somebody comes in after hours or on weekends they can get all the information, and then if they are interested they can contact you with the phone number from the brochure inside the box. This tactic has worked very well in our mobile home parks.
We ensure that each home for sale has a 18″ x 24″ “For Sale Sign” in the window letting potential homeowners know that the home is for sale. The signs are about $5.00 – $10.00 per sign (depending upon quantity/logos/number of colors) and are highly effective. We use a bright color like red to attract the attention of people passing by the mobile home for sale.
Letting your residents know that they can receive a free month’s lot rent or a large referral bonus (we pay $300) for anybody that purchases a home that is referred by the resident works exceptionally well. We also include mention of the referral bonus in our monthly newsletter as well as hand out flyers/door hangers to each resident on a quarterly basis.
You can also gain more exposure for your mobile home park by hosting a barbecue or sponsor a park-wide yard sale. It might be good to offer kids’ jumping machine or something where the children have some toys so they can play. Sky is the limit as to events that you can plan to garner more exposure for your mobile home park.
Another method is to try using television and radio spots. In West Texas, we purchased 30-second TV spots for as little as $1 to $5 per spot. (The $5 was actually a national TV station and the $1 was spent more for the local cable stations.) That worked well for exposure. Radio spots are priced reasonably and for maximum exposure your spot should be aired during drive times (6am – 8am and 4pm – 6pm).
However the most cost effective and greatest results come from placing classified ads in the Thrifty Nickel, Greensheet, and Pennysaver. The cost is about $5 to $15 per ad per week. You can place classified ads under the “Apartments for Rent” heading. Most people who are looking to rent apartments are really good candidates to buy a mobile home because for the same price they are renting an apartment, they can own their own home. You can also put classified ads under “Mobile Homes for Sale”.
Marketing and advertising will be the key for getting homes sold and filling up your mobile home park quickly!