Friday, September 30, 2016

Tears, Anger Abound As Lot-Leasing Trailer Park Residents Get 12 Months Notice To Move Or Abandon Their Mobile Homes; Aging Structures, Significant Modifications, Lack Of Available Space Make Expen$ive Relocation Difficult To Swing; Paltry Financial Reimbursement Offers Tough To Swallow

In Brackendale, British Columbia, News 1130 reports:
  • People living in a Brackendale trailer park are considering their legal options, after they’ve been told to vacate the property.

    Homeowners fear they’ll be homeless by this time next year. They received eviction notices [], at a meeting hosted by the Squamish Nation.

    Tom Green, who was in the crowd, says there were tears and anger and “it got pretty loud” at the meeting. “We’re done, we’re hooped, we don’t know what we’re going to do,” says Green, who has lived in the park since 2009.

    He pays $400 a month for the spot his home sits on, and has invested about $30,000 into the trailer, thinking he’d eventually sell it.

    Now, his plans have changed.

    “I’m phoning moving companies seeing if I can somehow move my trailer out of here. It’s not cheap. It’s very expensive. It will be about $5,000 to $10,000 to move it down the street, kind of thing. Then I need a place to put it.”

    Green says some people are threatening to squat on the property and they’re looking at hiring a lawyer.

    Back in 2012, the Squamish Nation took over operation of Riverside Trailer Park from a man who had run it for decades. The band made the prior leases invalid, so homeowners couldn’t sell their properties.

    “We feel the Squamish Nation could have been more upfront with this whole thing over the last four years. If they had told us four years ago what they were going to do, I wouldn’t have invested a cent in this place,” says Green.

    The band wants homeowners out of the park by October of next year and will allow them to stay rent free until then.

    It is also offering people who opt to move before the end of the year a payment of $9,600. The payment goes down to $4,800 if they leave between January 1 and March 31, 2017.
Source: Brackendale trailer owners describe a room full of anger.

See also, Squamish trailer park evictions leave residents with nowhere to go (Residents of 19 units at the trailer park were handed eviction notices after the band took over):
  • [R]esidents of 19 units at the trailer park were handed eviction notices by the band's lawyers and given a year to either move their mobile homes out or abandon them on the land.
    [Resident Wendy] Linton says they have been told, because the land is owned by the First Nation, it's not subject to tenancy laws.

    For Linton, who estimates her home would be worth $130,000 if she was not being evicted, the cash is cold comfort. "Most of our trailers can't be moved. They're so old and have porches attached and have been modified significantly, and, of course, there is a lack of space available," she said.

    She says with no way of selling her primary asset, the cash offered by the band won't be enough to even make a down payment on a new home in the pricey Squamish region. "I can't sell my trailer, so I can't get a deposit to get another place to live," she said.

    She says one of the owners who bought into the park five years ago was unable to sell his unit without a lease.

    "He had an offer of $115,000 on his trailer, and because he couldn't get a lease agreement from Squamish Nation, he couldn't sell."

    Linton says she's still reeling from the news, and it is too soon to say what she and others will do. "Quite frankly, I do not have a clue what I will do. I don't know right now. I think most people are still in shock."

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