Most tenants on Sam’s Good RV Park, located close to Vancouver, Washington, live there because rent in the surrounding areas is prohibitively expensive. According to RentCafe.com, the average rent in Vancouver is almost $1,400 for about 900 sq. feet. People who had a tough time paying that rent, found some solace at Sam’s RV Park. However, under new management, this year marks a major increase from $400 to $595.
Tenants at the RV park received notice of the rent hike in the form of a notice on November 19. Keep in mind, RV parks are places for people who CAN’T pay the city rent. As a result, many people in Vancouver will have no shelter while they sleep. When residents read that message, many were petrified.
“I’m having a hard time making rent as is,” said Wilson Biggers, 55, who works two part-time jobs and is seeking a third. “I can’t come up with that.”
However, just a few days after tenants received this message another notice arrived stating that the previous message was a mistake, and that only new residents would be charged the rent hike.
Ever since the park was sold to new management, tenants of Sam’s Good RV Park are used to receiving confusing notices such as this. An earlier notice, equally bizarre, instructed residents that they had to replace worn RVs with newer ones. Oddly enough, there were different model years on each of the notices.
One elderly resident said he was instructed to remove skirting that just kept his trailer warmer. He also had to get rid of the porch and ramp that led to his door.
One park resident claims that they have yet to receive notice that the park was sold. According to Clark County property records, Sam’s Good RV Park was sold to Sam’s Good RV Park LLC, controlled by a Christopher Baird. Baird was unable to be contacted.
Might something else be going on?
Many residents of the park believe that someone is just trying to make the residents leave on their own accord. Evicting any tenant is a difficult, sometimes even impossible, task. In most situations, even if the tenant is not paying rent, the landlord needs to file an eviction action in court. Then, the tenant would have five days to answer and put the disputed rent in the court’s registry. If the landlord accepted just a dollar for the disputed rent, the process gets started all over.
As a result, if new ownership wants tenants out, it is usually easier to make them want to leave than to evict them. Landlords need to be very careful when evicting a tenant. Every state has different laws, and the laws pertaining to evictions are meticulous.
If you live in an RV park and are dealing with rental matters, you should check out the laws regarding renting in an RV park and tenant rights in your particular state. For more community news, tips for RVers, and more great atricles, take a look at our blog.
By Jordan Arizmendi.