Predatory landlords are buying up trailer parks en masse

From Cape Cod to West Palm Beach to Houston to San Diego, real estate developers have been going all-in on mobile home properties. It might sound like a strange investment to some, but it's also one of the most reliable and low-lift ways to make a passive (read: predatory) profit off of rent-seeking.

This is a phenomenon that has unfortunately for quite a while now — property managers at trailer parks milking their residents for everything they're worth. In many cases, the residents of those trailer parks already rely on various welfare subsidies, whether they're seniors or living on housing or disability assistance, so their income is already typically limited. Some of these residents may have also been formerly incarcerated, or registered sex offenders, which further limits where and how they can live.

And these greedy landlords have figured out a way to take every last cent they can, knowing full well that they've cornered the only market that's available to these residents.

The video above looks at this phenomenon through the specific lens of the Trails End mobile home community in Fresno, California. I think The Housing Newsletter summed the 15-minute documentary up quite sufficiently:

Its dirtbag owners having lost the property due to mismanagement, the park has been put into receivership by the State of California. The guy appointed as receiver by the state is a real anti-worker (and probably extremely corrupt) authoritarian who wants to "fix" the park up (by terrorizing its inhabitants with armed private guards while work crews go trailer to trailer destroying all the personal touches people have added over the years) and hand it over to one of the growing number of specialist corporations that like to squeeze basically helpless trailer park residents for profit. The residents organize with a local lefty activist group and protest this course of action, hoping the judge overseeing the receivership will agree to let a nonprofit housing trust buy the park. But the judge, like the receiver, ignores community protests and sells it to a corporation—despite the fact that it has a history of suing cities that, like Fresno, have rent control for trailer park lots to force an end to such ordinances.