Today, Gov. Jay Inslee signed into law legislation sponsored by Sen. Noel Frame (D-Seattle) to protect the residents of manufactured home parks from displacement. SB 5198 would require two years’ notice before the closure of a manufactured home park and would give residents of the park a fair chance to purchase the park themselves. The bill was negotiated between landlords and representatives of manufactured home park tenants and passed the Legislature with bipartisan support.
“Manufactured housing provides an important and affordable housing option for a lot of folks, and we need to make sure it’s preserved for them,” said Frame. “Many of their residents are older adults, aging in place, or on fixed incomes. If their park closes, this is a huge disruption, especially since there are fewer and fewer parks with availability that they could move to. The folks living in a manufactured housing park should get a bit more predictability, and a fair chance to purchase the land they’re on if the owner decides to sell, and this bill makes that happen.”
The bill does allow for landlords to give less notice in certain cases, particularly when the landlord offers relocation assistance to tenants. The two-year closure notice is reduced to 18 or 12 months if the landlord offers sufficient financial compensation to tenants for their relocation costs or the cost of their home.
When a park’s landowner gives notice of intent to sell, the tenants would have 70 days to decide whether to compete to purchase the park, and the landlord and tenants would enter negotiations. Both parties would be required by law to negotiate in good faith through that process.
The bill will go into effect on July 23, 2023, 90 days after the end of the legislative session.