Mark Busch Q&A - Unauthorized RV Occupants

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June 21, 2016
Mark Busch
Attorney
Mark Busch P.C.

 

Question:  We have a couple of situations with unauthorized RV occupants in our park.  The first is an RV tenant who has moved in a person who we consider to be a nuisance – she has been yelling at other residents.  The second situation is a nice lady who has moved in a boyfriend – he seems okay but still hasn’t been approved.  In both cases, they have ignored our requests to fill out a rental application.  We use MHCO Form 80 (RV Space Rental Agreement).  Is there anything in that agreement that allows us to do something about these situations?

 

 

Answer: 

Please note revision from last week's article:  The cities of Portland and Milwaukie, Oregon have passed local ordinances that require 90-day no-cause notices regardless of the length of the tenancy.  Although of arguable legality, this would only affect RV parks located within those two cities.

Both tenants appear to be violating MHCO Form 80, Section 12 D, which prohibits any person not listed in the tenant’s rental application from occupying the RV in the park.  “Occupy” means living in the RV more than 7 days (consecutive or nonconsecutive) in any calendar year.  It is important to act quickly once you learn of an unauthorized occupant to avoid any waiver issues. 

In the first situation, it seems like it would be best to simply issue a no-cause tenancy termination notice to your tenant.  The unauthorized woman is already causing problems and there is no need to give her a chance to become an approved tenant.  The no-cause notice would require them both to vacate.  If not, you could file an eviction case.

An RV tenancy (unlike a manufactured home tenancy) can be terminated with a no-cause notice if the tenancy is month to month.  If the tenant has been in the park less than a year, the no-cause notice period can be 30 days.  After the first year of tenancy, the notice period must be at least 60 days.  Use MHCO Form 43C (30/60 Day Notice to Vacate – No Cause). 

(NOTE:  The cities of Portland and Milwaukie, Oregon have passed local ordinances that require 90-day no-cause notices regardless of the length of the tenancy.  Although of arguable legality, this would only affect RV parks located within those two cities.)

You could take the same approach in the second situation, although it sounds like perhaps you would like to give this tenant an opportunity to comply.  I would recommend that you speak with the tenant and explain that unless the boyfriend fills out an application for a background check, the park will have to issue a no-cause tenancy termination notice (just like in the first situation).  If he complies and passes the background check, he must sign the rental agreement as a co-tenant (as required by MHCO Form 80, Section 12 D).

A typical twist on some of these scenarios is that the occupant passes the criminal/eviction background check, but fails the credit check.  In such case, you would be perfectly within your rights under MHCO Form 80 to insist that the occupant vacate.  However, you would also have the option of allowing the occupant to stay by signing a Temporary Occupant Agreement (MHCO Form 25).  This would give you the flexibility to allow the occupant to stay, but with the requirement that he/she vacate if the tenant’s tenancy ends.