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from WEWS News 5: Residents of 2 Lake Co. mobile home parks file lawsuit against owner over claims of harassment, surging prices

Posted September 7, 2022
7:15 pm

By: Clay LePard

PAINESVILLE, Ohio — A new lawsuit filed in Lake County alleges mismanagement of two mobile home parks, including claims of overcharged utilities and rent, along with violating fair housing laws.

Residents of Fairgrounds Manufactured Home Facility, located at 1346 Mentor Ave. in Painesville, and Perry Mobile Home Park, located at 2826 North Ridge Rd. in Perry, filed the lawsuit with attorneys from Legal Aid against Jones Estates Perry LLC and Jones Estates Fairgrounds LLC.

Claims in the lawsuit include increased land rents without offering lease agreements, violating fair housing laws by allegedly treating certain residents differently based on their ethnicity, and failure to keep common areas in good condition.

Dozens of residents gathered outside the Lake County Courthouse to rally against what they’re calling violations of Ohio state law.

“It’s changed a lot,” Ricardo Rodriguez said of the property's new owner.

Rodriguez told News 5 he has lived at Fairgrounds Manufactured Home Facility for the past eight years with his wife and three children.

The lawsuit also claims the owner, along with the water company 5 Star Metering, charged overpriced water and utility fees.

“Some of my neighbors are paying $380 a month for water and they call to complain and the owner’s response is very ugly,” Rodriguez said.

Online records confirm a new owner based out of North Carolina and a property management company took over just a couple of years ago.

Paula Bailey hopes to formally join the lawsuit. She’s lived at Fairgrounds Manufactured Home Facility for five years and wants to stay. But the headaches, she said, keep growing with this new owner.

“It was fine but now you can’t get a hold of anyone at all,” she added.

Earlier this year, News 5 reported on an increase in these types of out-of-town investors, with one study showing in Cuyahoga County that property acquisitions by out-of-town investors have tripled since 2004.

“I know nationally speaking, this is becoming a problem with corporations and hedge funds and doing these sorts of things where residents feel they have no recourse,” Dalhberg added. “We’re hoping today people can see there are options when this happens.”

News 5 reached out to the water company, the property owner based in North Carolina and the property manager locally. News 5 spoke with the property manager and notified her of the lawsuit’s existence, however none of those parties have responded with a formal comment.

Original story available at News 5 Cleveland: Residents of 2 Lake Co. mobile home parks file lawsuit against owner

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