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Selling Mobile Homes

By - 2008

Selling mobile homes can be tricky because they do not always finance like other homes. This is especially true if the mobile is an older one. In fact, some old mobile homes are even difficult to insure, making lenders unwilling to lend on them at any interest rate.

How, then, do you sell mobile homes quickly and for a decent price? Whether selling your own mobile that you live in, or selling mobile homes you have as rental investments, there are several things you can do. But most of them need to be done before you put up that "for sale" sign.

Selling Mobile Homes - Preparation

The usual preparation helps, of course. Clean the place up, fix any obvious problems, and mow the lawn. Also, if it is an older mobile home that needs an occasional cot of tar on the roof, this can be a relatively cheap way to increase the perceived value. The more important preparation, however, is not for the home itself.

Prepare a list of places that finance mobile homes. This might take some research online and a few calls around town. Mobiles are not as easy to finance as other homes, so at least make it easier for your prospective buyers to find financing. A great offer isn't great if your buyer can't get a loan.

While doing your research, ask about the requirements for financing. Is there a limit to the age of the mobile? Is there a limit to the loan amount? How much of a down payment is required? You need to be ready to help that buyer.

If it is an older mobile, you may find that almost no insurance company will write a policy on it. Buyers will want to get home owners insurance, of course, but more importantly, they will not be able to get a loan without it. The fact that your insurance company is currently covering the property doesn't mean that they will sell a policy to a new buyer. Call and ask them about this. You may also want to find another insurer or two that cover mobile homes, so you can send the buyers their way.

Have an information sheet available with all the important details about the property. Your real estate agent should do this for you. If you're selling mobile homes on your own, this is up to you. Be sure to indicate whether the home comes with land, needs to be moved, or is on a rented lot. Have copies of this information ready to mail out or hand out, and keep an information box in the front yard with the "for sale" sign.

Selling Mobile Homes - Providing Financing

If you are in a position to finance the mobile home, you can get a better price. People buy mobile homes not just because they are cheaper than other housing, but because the payments and down payments are often lower (they would buy a $300,000 house if they could pay just $500 per month). Make it easy for them to buy and you can get as much as 10% more for the home.

Don't do this by letting them assume the payments on your existing loan. This is dangerous, because their default will go on your credit report before you even know it happened. There are other ways to help, though.

If you owe nothing on the home, you can sell it on payments. Have a lawyer draft the loan and mortgage documents. This resolves the problem of selling a difficult-to-finance place, and you can combine a low payment with a five-year balloon so they can get in easy while you don't have to wait too many years for the final payoff. I am convinced that we got about 13% more than we could have for our last mobile home by offering financing.

If you owe on the mobile, and so the buyer needs to get his own financing to cash you out, you can still help him out. Often the biggest problem people have buying a home isn't getting the loan or affording the payments. It is the up front cost - the down payment and other costs of buying. If you pay all the closing costs, and even help with the down payment to the extent allowed by the lender, you can often sell for a much higher price - high enough to more than cover these costs.

Make it easy for the buyers when selling mobile homes. This means preparing for any questions, knowing where to send them for financing and insurance, and helping with their cash needs. This how you sell faster and for a higher price.


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Houses Under Fifty Thousand | Selling Mobile Homes