Updated June 8, 2023

Even as inflation cools, housing costs for most Americans remain at unsustainable levels. Historically, manufactured homes have been a critical part of the affordable housing landscape, serving low- and moderate-income Americans and in communities where other affordable homes are often unavailable. 

Manufactured home residents face unique challenges – some 40 percent of manufactured housing exists in communities where residents own their homes but rent the land underneath from private owners. Rising lot rents and fees, coupled with deteriorating conditions, threaten to displace residents who often have few alternatives.

The challenges facing manufactured home residents are urgent, and in recent years, Enterprise has been working at multiple levels to provide capital, support communities, and ultimately change the system to keep residents in their homes. 

Our CDFI, Enterprise Community Loan Fund, has committed $20 million in low-cost capital to ROC USA Capital to help manufactured home residents purchase their communities and form co-ops, preserving nearly 500 homes over the past two years. The resident-owned community model gives manufactured homeowners agency over lot rents and community improvements, as well as security against displacement.

We recognize, though, that changing the system requires changing policies and practices at the state and local level. Our state and local teams continue to advocate for policies that change the system, including mandatory “just cause” eviction provisions, new loan products that specifically target long-term affordability for vulnerable residents, right to purchase laws, rent stabilization programs, and more.  

Still, we know we can’t do it alone. That’s why we’ve provided $1 million in grants to ten organizations working in more than a dozen states to change policies and systems to promote stability and affordability for manufactured home residents. Those organizations are using those resources for policy advocacy, research and analysis, and technical assistance.

We also are pushing for more stringent protections among federal regulators. In 2021, we successfully advocated for the Federal Housing Finance Agency to make Tenant Site Lease Protections mandatory in any manufactured home loan offered by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, a critical piece of regulation that will impact tens of thousands of manufactured home residents. Those protections include renewable lease terms, written notice of rent increases, grace periods for late payments, and more. 

Finally, as a leader in research and policy development, we are seeding future policy solutions to better protect manufactured home residents. We have supported the Lincoln Institute of Land Policy in developing and disseminating research on meaningful solutions. And our national policy team authored a brief, Preserving the Affordability of Manufactured Homes in Land-Lease Communities, outlining strategies for maintaining affordability over the long term.

Manufactured homes have the potential to alleviate the shortage of affordable homes in thousands of communities across the country. Enterprise is here to support those residents and support the systems change that can ensure a manufactured home is also a stable home.