Manufactured Home Parks
Purchasing a Manufactured Home
Licensing and Bonding of Dealers and Manufacturers
Manufactured home dealers must have a license, surety bond, and liability insurance. The license must be prominently displayed on the premises. Banks, savings and loans associations, real estate brokers, and businesses that repossess manufactured homes are not required to have a license or a bond.
The Commissioner of the Department of Labor and Industry licenses people who meet the application, bond, and insurance requirements. Certificates are issued by the Commissioner to anyone who is granted a license. The Commissioner may deny, suspend, or revoke any license if the licensee or any of its directors, officers, general partners, or affiliates violates the applicable law.
Every new manufactured home sold in Minnesota has an implied warranty that the home conforms to applicable federal and state laws. Every new manufactured home also has an implied warranty of merchantability and fitness for permanent housing in Minnesota’s climate. Manufacturers or dealers may also make express warranties on a manufactured home, but they cannot limit any implied warranties.
Warranties are valid for one year from the date the new home is delivered to the consumer. When a homeowner wants to make a claim covered by either an express or implied warranty, the homeowner must notify the dealer, or the manufacturer, within a reasonable time after discovering the problem, but no later than 90 days after the expiration of the warranty. Either the manufacturer, or the dealer, or both of them working together, must repair the manufactured home at its site within a reasonable amount of time after receiving notice from the owner.
Prior to 2010, Minnesota law prohibited the sale of any manufactured home that did not comply with the Manufactured Home Building Code. In 2010, the Legislature amended the law to provide that only the sale of new manufactured homes must comply with the Manufactured Home Building Code. The Legislature further changed the law in 2010, and again in 2011, to require that a person may not sell or install for occupancy a used manufactured home, manufactured after June 14, 1976, unless the used manufactured home complies with the “Notice of Compliance Form” required by law. The Notice of Compliance Form must be signed by the seller and purchaser, indicate which party is responsible for either making or paying for any necessary corrections prior to the sale and transferring ownership of the manufactured home, and must be substantially in the format as found on the Notice of Compliance Form found on pages 36 and 37 at the back of this publication.
It is a misdemeanor to alter a certified manufactured home manufactured after June 14, 1976, so that it violates building codes. It is also a misdemeanor to install a manufactured home at a site of occupancy which does not comply with applicable Minnesota statutes or with the manufactured home installation rules, Minnesota Rules chapter 1350.
The Commissioner of the Department of Labor and Industry enforces the manufactured home installation rules. The Commissioner may:
- Charge reasonable fees for inspections, seals, and other enforcement costs.
- Adopt rules governing the installation of manufactured homes.
- Adopt rules governing the construction, installation, and certification of manufactured home accessory structures (this means any factory-built building or structure that is an addition or supplement to a manufactured home).
A person who fails to correct a Manufactured Home Building Code violation within 40 days of being ordered to do so is guilty of a misdemeanor. Additionally, anyone who violates any of these laws is liable to the State of Minnesota for a monetary penalty up to $1,000 for each violation, not to exceed $1,000,000.
Tire and Axle Scam
Often companies will go through a manufactured home park offering to buy tires and axles from residents. A resident should be careful, it may be illegal to sell them. It could also create problems, such as moving the home in the future or buying replacements. Finally, a chance exists that the company will move on and leave the resident without compensation or goods.