Tenants at a mobile home park in Tempe only have a couple months to move before the park closes down, but most of them have no idea where they’re going to go. They say anything that’s affordable enough is outside of Tempe and they’re worried they won’t have time to make arrangements.
“This has happened to me twice and it’s hard," said tenant Rocio Beltran. She has three kids and has only lived in Tempe Mobile Home Park for two years since she was forced out of her last park.
"So I start again, unpack it, pack it again, so it’s really hard for us," she said.
At the beginning of the year they, along with everyone else, got a six-month notice to move out because the property owner was partnering with a developer. For most tenants, the biggest roadblock for these mobile homes is actually moving them. At a meeting with owners, tenants learned they could get $7,500 from state funds to help move their homes out. But the estimates people are getting from moving companies are about $15,000 to haul a single-wide.
"Some people put it for sale right now, but they have to let people know that they have to take out the house from here, from the property," tenant Rayo Gasca said. The prospect of moving the homes has been a turnoff for buyers.
Sylvia Herrera, a tenant advocate from Barrio Defense Committees, says these people lost a lot of time dealing with disputed liens on their properties. She also says the tenants heard options about turning their titles over to Treehouse Group (the owner of the property) and about moving to other Treehouse properties. But they claim they didn’t hear all of their options when it comes to selling their homes or moving them to other properties.
"They’re even wondering, ya know, if they do find a place, how long are they gonna be able to live there without getting a notice that they have to relocate as well," Herrera said.
Families like the Beltrans are hoping they can get a couple extra months so they can find an affordable place without having to move their kids out of their schools. Finding another place to live in Tempe is going to be hard because there aren't a lot of mobile home parks in town.
Tempe City Council Member Lauren Kuby says as of a couple weeks ago, Treehouse Group had not made any request to re-zone the property from its current status as a mobile home park.
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