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Changes for motor home statutes

Published (3/9/2012)
By Erin Schmidtke
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Motor home owners can affix their vehicles to land and change the property designation from “vehicle” to “real estate.” Owners can even get a mortgage on the home. But if they want to change back to “vehicle” status and sell the home, that part isn’t so easy.

Rep. Mark Murdock (R-Ottertail) hopes to create a legal process that will assist owners who are returning their homes to being vehicles. His bill would especially help those who are hoping to sell their motor homes. Under HF1595, the title of the property would be tied to the home, not the land, which is necessary for a sale.

The House Ways and Means Committee approved the bill March 5 and sent it to the House floor. The companion is SF1416, which Sen. Michelle Fischbach (R-Paynesville) sponsors. It awaits action in the Senate Judiciary and Public Safety Committee.

“I think this is a pretty good bill, because I see some of the inequities that developed because of the problem you’re trying to address,” said Rep. Tom Rukavina (DFL-Virginia). However, he questioned the need for the Department of Public Safety to address motor homes’ legal status, as the bill provides. Rukavina worried the department is already too occupied with other issues.

Mark Brunner, president of the Manufactured & Modular Home Association of Minnesota, responded that he did not foresee a problem, as the state reviews 15-20 cases like this per year.

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