Why Selling a Mobile Home on Tucson MLS Is Not Always the Best Idea

tucson mobile home mls

Usually (though not always) selling a Tucson mobile home is a more involved and more difficult affair than selling a traditional home. But occasionally, when conditions are just right, it pretty much parallels the process of selling a traditional home, and everything is smooth sailing. And, typically, one of the steps in the process in such a case is listing the mobile home on the Tucson MLS. If it goes off without a hitch, that’s great. But let’s take a look at why selling a Tucson mobile home on the MLS isn’t always the best idea.

What is Tucson MLS?

Typically, we tend to speak of the Tucson Multiple Listing Service (MLS), as if there were only one. But, in reality, there are multiple MLS. It’s important, then, to understand exactly what an MLS is and how it can (or cannot) be used to sell Tucson, AZ, mobile homes (now known as “manufactured homes”).

Basically, a multiple listing service (MLS) is simply a service that compiles or aggregates real estate listings of a certain kind or for a certain area as a result of a group of real estate brokers banding to together to create and use such a service. An MLS allows agents to see one another’s listings because such sharing of information benefits all of them owing to the obvious access to expanded listing information and the shared commissions often involved.

MLSs come in both/either physical and/or digital format. The service subscribers then receive the book version and/or access to the electronic database. Since there is no MLS governing body and the name can’t be trademarked or branded, each MLS is typically peculiar to a certain region, area, or location. And this makes it a great tool for buyers and seller’s agents concentrating on a certain, say, city or neighborhood. The main benefit, though, is that it saves time and effort by gathering all these listings into one convenient location, with the goal of helping buyers find what they’re looking for and helping sellers sell their properties.

Although the model for MLS has been around for 100+ years, it really hit its stride and became far more useful with the advent of the Internet. Now in our digital age, this kind of consolidating service is easily and quickly accessed, along with the tons of pertinent details it provides (such as private contact information and showing times) that formerly required a lot of digging.

So, yes, the MLS is a very useful real estate tool. But is selling a mobile home on the MLS a good idea? Or would you be better off going through a reputable mobile home buyer in Tucson, AZ?

Complexities of Selling Tucson Mobile Homes or Manufactured Homes

The problem or main difficulty in selling manufactured homes is that they aren’t always considered real estate. And that means, in those cases, you can’t list them on the MLS because the transaction is simply a sale of personal property – the selling of a vehicle, just as you would do with your car.

Although the governing laws vary from state to state, they all follow a general pattern. If mobile homes/manufactured homes have the wheels on them and aren’t solidly anchored, they are typically regarded as vehicles, not as real property. And in this instance, not only can a mobile home not be sold on the MLS, but often an agent cannot assist in such a transaction.

If, however, (generally speaking) the wheels have been removed and the mobile home is attached to the land under it, then it can be sold as real estate. Often the land must be owned and not leased. But when these criteria have been met, real estate agents can assist in buying/selling, and the mobile home can be sold on the MLS.

So not only is selling a mobile home on the MLS not always the best idea but in some cases, it’s not possible at all. And the whole thing gets even more tangled and more expensive for some sellers.

The typical commission for a real estate agent is about 3% to 6%. But that figure can go up substantially for manufactured homes when they are located in a mobile home park. If your mobile home is situated in a park and you use an agent, you will likely wind paying an 8% to 10% commission.

Complications When You Need to Sell a Tucson Mobile Home Fast

But what if – job relocation, divorce, the threat of repossession, or whatever – you have to sell your Tucson, AZ, mobile home fast? With that scenario, further complications and considerations arise.

Selling mobile homes/manufactured homes is both different from and often more difficult than selling traditional homes. The biggest difficulty lies in the fact that many mobile homes are located in mobile home parks, typically sitting on a rented lot. So when sellers need to sell fast and for cash, they often have to get a little creative in order to avoid losing their mobile home to the park.

Some of the most common options for selling mobile homes in parks include selling to:

  • The park owners/managers
  • Another mobile home park, usually for cash
  • An individual cash buyer/investor looking to score a good deal
  • A mobile home dealer specializing in repossessions
  • A Tucson mobile home buyer that can pay a fair cash price and close quickly

For the first four options, your mobile home will have to be in fairly good condition and must be priced appropriately for a sale. Pricing correctly, though, can be tough to get right. If you price too low, you’ll lose money (which is too often the outcome when people sell to less-than-reputable cash buyers). If, on the other hand, your price too high, your Tucson mobile home may sit on the market unsold for months on end.

What makes pricing manufactured homes so difficult is that they depreciate over time and with use. But land typically appreciates over time. So if you own the land your mobile home sits on, the land may increase in value while your mobile home decreases in value. And all this makes pricing correctly – especially if you want to sell on the MLS – a mighty tough job.

You do have an alternative, though . . .

Consider a Tucson Mobile Home Buyer

So if selling a mobile home on the Tucson MLS isn’t always the best idea, then what is? Very often, selling to a reputable Tucson mobile home buyer turns out to be the best way. Here’s why . . . 

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