The U.K. has voted to exit the E.U. That’s a lot of initials. But there’s one more: that’s “O.K.” with mobile home park owners. Indeed, Brexit is a great thing for the mobile home park industry, which makes big gains as a result, with virtually no downside. So if Brexit is thought to be the beginning of the end of the free world – and the stock market is certainly demonstrating that today – then why are mobile home park owners smiling?
IT WILL STOP ANY U.S. INCREASE IN INTEREST RATES
Ever since the Great Recession began in 2007, mobile home park owners have been enjoying one of the lowest – and most stable – interest rate environments in American history. Low rates makes for low borrowing costs. The reason that mobile home parks have such high cash-on-cash returns (often 20% or more) is the spread between cap rates and borrowing costs. A roughly 3 point spread equals a 20% return. The current low interest rates allow for up to 6 point spreads. Janet Yellen, with the Fed, had been boasting that she was going to raise interest rates soon. Back to the drawing board, Janet.
IF IT TRIGGERS U.S. RECESSION, THAT’S THE BUSINESS WE’RE IN
The mobile home park business is all about affordable housing. We are the only form of detached dwelling that an American family can live in for around $300 to $700 per month. Apartments in the U.S. average $1,300 per month, and single-family homes have a median of around $200,000. As the economy decline, the demand for affordable housing increases exponentially. That’s why any headline that has “recession” or “depression” in it is good for the mobile home park business – that’s the fuel that makes it generate even greater profits.
WE DON’T DO ANY INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS
Mobile home parks, as we know them, only exist in North America, with about 90% of them in the U.S. Mobile home park owners do not export a product, nor do they import anything. It’s all 100% made in the U.S.A. Currency fluctuations are meaningless to park owners, as is the potential for world economic collapse. While Apple’s stock may decline at the mere mention of world events, mobile home park owners don’t even have to pay attention to such items.
OUR RESIDENTS DON’T HAVE JOBS IN THE INDUSTRIES EFFECTED BY BREXIT
The mobile home park industry serves, for the most part, those who earn around $10 to $15 per hour. The industries that are going to be the most depressed as a result of the Brexit vote are such sectors as banking – things that our tenants have no involvement in. If Citigroup lays off 5,000 office workers, the net effect in a mobile home park is zero. It’s also important to note that over 50% of every job created in the U.S. since 2007 is $10 per hour or under. Our residents’ employment opportunities are vast and secure.
The Brexit vote has come and gone. World markets are collapsing. There is fear and loathing throughout the media and business world. Mobile home park owners, on the other hand, look on the news as a good thing. Which camp would you rather be in?
Frank Rolfe has been a manufactured home community owner for almost two decades, and currently ranks as part of the 5th largest community owner in the United States, with more than 21,000 lots in 25 states in the Great Plains and Midwest. His books and courses on community acquisitions and management are the top-selling ones in the industry. To learn more about Frank’s views on the manufactured home community industry visit www.MobileHomeUniversity.com.