Abandoned Mobile Homes

Mobile home park owners and operators often ask how they can obtain title for a mobile home that has been abandoned in their park by the mobile home owner.

There are two methods by which the park owner can title the mobile home:

  1. Have the mobile home owner assign their mobile home title to the mobile home park. This is the easiest method, although usually the owner who abandoned the mobile home cannot be contacted for an assigned title.
     
  2. If assignment of the title by the owner is not possible, the presentation of a court order identifying the mobile home by year, make, and manufacturer's serial number and awarding ownership of the home to the park can be used. This requires the park owner to go to court to have the abandoned mobile home awarded to the mobile home park. Please note, the court order must assign ownership of the mobile home/manufactured housing into your name and indicate termination of a previous lien and if applicable, placement of new lienholder information. The court order serves in place of an assigned title.

    The Department of State has been advised that several circuit courts across the state are not familiar with accepting petitions for the awarding of mobile home ownership. Due to the lack of familiarity amongst some courts, the Michigan Department of State is providing the following information when filing a petition with the court. This information is provided for informational purposes only and should not be interpreted as legal advice.

    It has been reported to the department that some attorneys have had success when the mobile home is being conveyed along with the underlying real property by filing a quiet title action type in which the following information is provided in the order: Name of the owner as determined by the court, the vehicle identification number (VIN) or serial number of the mobile home, and a lienholder or lack thereof.  

    Alternatively, the court may choose to accept a filing petition to award ownership of a vehicle. These court orders must contain the above information as well: Name of the owner as determined by the court, the vehicle identification number (VIN) or serial number of the mobile home, and a lienholder or lack thereof.  

    PLEASE NOTE:  The Department of State should not be named as a defendant in any case filing as this may delay the title issuance process. In fact, courts should not order the Michigan Department of State to issue a mobile home title, they should indicate the proper owner of the mobile home, in addition to the information noted above. Upon receipt of the court order, the Michigan Department will be able to issue a mobile home title when accompanied by the application for title, and title fee.

 

Mobile homes with missing titles

Mobile home owners who need a title for a mobile home that was not properly recorded with the Michigan Department of State or is titled in another owner’s name have two options:

  1. Have the previous mobile home owner assign their mobile home title to the current mobile home owner. This is the easiest method and may require the previous owner who sold the mobile home to obtain a duplicate title in order to properly assign the title to the current owner.
     
  2. If assignment of the title by the previous owner is not possible, the presentation of a court order identifying the mobile home by year, make, and manufacturer's serial number and awarding ownership of the home to the current owner can be used. This requires the current owner to go to court to have the mobile home awarded to the current owner. Please note, the court order must assign ownership of the mobile home/manufactured housing into your name and indicate termination of a previous lien and, if applicable, placement of new lienholder information. The court order serves in place of an assigned title.

 

Title Application Process

  • Submit the assigned title or court order to a Secretary of State branch office to apply for a mobile home title in the name of the park.
     
  • The park will need to provide a termination (discharge) of lien if the assigned title or the Department of State's title record shows there is a first secured party (bank loan).
     
  • The title fee is $90. A 6% use tax is due on the value of the mobile home. The park owner declares the mobile home's value when applying for the title. 
     
  • Once the new mobile home title is issued in the name of the mobile home park, the mobile home park is the legal owner. You can rent the mobile home or use the title to sell it or, if you wish to scrap the mobile home, take it to a recycler for shredding. You will need to assign the title to the recycling center.

Note:  The above options are available to mobile home park owners, mobile home dealers, and individuals.