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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
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    7

    Question Mobile Home Park Owner Won't Remove a Potentially Dangerous Tree on Our Lot

    My question involves Owner/Resident laws concerning Mobile Home Parks in the State of New Hampshire.

    My wife and I reside in a mobile home park in NH. We have been here for two years. We own our mobile home, and pay lot rent of $350.00 per month. Our issue with the owner/landlord is that there is a huge Silver Maple Tree that is practically touching the side of our home. It measures only 3" away from our home at the base of the tree and only 7" from the roof top to the tree. Our concern is that this tree could easily fall on over and crush our home. We live at the beginning of the White mountains and near the big lake. We experience severe thunderstorms in the summer that are usually accompanied by high winds, and in the winter the storms consist of lot's of snow and high winds. There are also power lines that go in between the limbs and branches. I was told by someone from legal aid that since we own the mobile Home and the owner owns the land, that he is responsible for removing the tree at his expense. The owners park rules state that residents do NOT have the right to trim or cut down trees. The rules further state that any problems with the mobile home itself (plumbing, electricity, heating, etc) are the responsibility of the home owner, and anything outside the home (plumbing, electricity etc) is the responsibility of the park owner. I was told by the person I spoke with from legal aid that since the tree is his, he must cut it down since it is a danger to not only our home but possibly our lives as well. Last year I emailed the Owner a certified letter apprising him of the situation. His return email said and I quote: "I will remove the tree when I am good and ready." So one week ago I mailed him a certified letter (return receipt requested). I just today received the return receipt. It was signed by him. What I am asking is for a second opinion as to whether the owner must remove this dangerous tree, how long he has to do the job, and if he refuses, what are my options. I cannot afford a lawyer so what options, if any, do I have? Any help or suggestions will be greatly appreciated. Thank you in advance...........P.S. I attached a picture of the tree and the side of our mobile home.


  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
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    73,203

    Default Re: Mobile Home Park Owner Won't Remove a Potentially Dangerous Tree on Our Lot

    Your landlord apparently disagrees with your assessment that the tree is dangerous.

    Have you tried contacting the power company? If the tree threatens power lines, although they won't remove it, they may prune it back considerably.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Posts
    27,034

    Default Re: Mobile Home Park Owner Won't Remove a Potentially Dangerous Tree on Our Lot

    from what I can see, the tree looks pretty healthy so it would not be any more of a threat than any other healthy tree that is within it's own height from your trailer.

    the power lines could definitely be a safety hazard though. If the insulation were to wear off very common with aerial power lines) and the tree was wet, the power lines could short out and be a danger to anybody in contact with the tree.

    The other thing I would be concerned with is if the tree sways enough to damage your trailer. Due to the closeness, I would think it is isn't far from doing that. Problem is, if the LL doesn't want to be proactive and remove the tree, you'll have to be reactive if it does cause damage.

    so, make sure your homeowners insurance is adequate and paid.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Posts
    7

    Default Re: Mobile Home Park Owner Won't Remove a Potentially Dangerous Tree on Our Lot

    My home owners insurance will NOT cover any damages inflicted by that tree. I was told that since it is on land owned by the mobile home park owner, that the tree is His responsibilty. All I am asking people here is if someone might know of any free or low cost (my wife and I are disabled) legal organization(s) that would help us if the park owner refuses to carry out what is obviously His responsibility. Why would my insurance want to pay for any damages incurred from a tree that belongs to the park owner? It would be different if I owned the land.

  5. #5

    Default Re: Mobile Home Park Owner Won't Remove a Potentially Dangerous Tree on Our Lot

    Is this a mobile home that you placed on the property, or was already ON this lot and you moved into it? (just trying to figure out who thought placing the home 3 inches from the tree was a good idea to begin with.)

    I'm in agreement with Mr. K. and jk - at this time, the tree doesn't appear problematic nor danger imminent. You'll have an uphill battle arging about POSSIBLE future problems from what appears to be a healthy tree (and in light of the answer to my question above). That tree could just as easily keep your mobile home from blowing away in a storm. A diseased or compromised tree on the other hand, increases liability on the landlord should some natural weather occurrance create damage. If you've got some evidence that the tree is compromised in some way, you'll want to keep those photos or that evidence handy in case some issue does develop. Your avenues for legal recourse occur when/if there are ACTUAL damages. The more evidence you gather to show that (a) there was an actual problem and (b) that the landlord refused to act to resolve it, the stronger your case will be, should it get that far.

    And, as Mr. K. suggested, get on the phone to the power company regarding the lines.
    Catherine NeSmith
    Executive Director
    AARDVARC.org, Inc.
    http://www.aardvarc.org

    Fave Big Bang Theory site: Sheldon Cooper Fans

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Posts
    7

    Default Re: Mobile Home Park Owner Won't Remove a Potentially Dangerous Tree on Our Lot

    Quote Quoting Mr. Knowitall
    View Post
    Your landlord apparently disagrees with your assessment that the tree is dangerous.

    Have you tried contacting the power company? If the tree threatens power lines, although they won't remove it, they may prune it back considerably.
    To JK, senior member, and Mr. Knowitall: ......... My landlord does dissagree but my landlord is also a slumlord. My insurance will NOT cover any damages inflicted by this tree. It's only 3" (three inches away from the side of our home), plus live power lines are runing through it's branches. The owner provides all residents with a park rule booklet that specifically states that anyone who Owns their mobile home, any damages or issues incurred INSIDE the home (plumbing, electrical, structual), the owner of the home must pay for any and all repairs. Any damage OUTSIDE of the home (water lines, sewer, "TRIMMING OF TREES" etc, are paid by the PARK OWNER. Residents who are RENTING a mobile home from the park owner, ALL common maintenance and repairs are the responsibility of the park owner, excluding obvious vandalism (windows broken by residents, holes in walls, ink/crayon marks on walls, etc.). So, by the park owner's own rules, he is admitting HE is responsible for this tree that is practically growing OUT of our mobile home. All I am asking is if someone here knows of a free or low income legal organization I can get in touch with. I don't want to wait until the tree falls on our home, destroying it and possibly killing us in the process. Our insurance company would have to be idiots to pay for a tree falling on our home, especially one that is on land that we don't even own. I would think that is one of many reasons the park owner has his OWN insurance. I'd appreciate all suggestions. Thanks!

  7. #7

    Default Re: Mobile Home Park Owner Won't Remove a Potentially Dangerous Tree on Our Lot

    Are you under the impression that an attorney would be able to go to court on your behalf and have a judge order the landlord to remove the tree because you feel it is dangerous?
    Catherine NeSmith
    Executive Director
    AARDVARC.org, Inc.
    http://www.aardvarc.org

    Fave Big Bang Theory site: Sheldon Cooper Fans

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Posts
    7

    Default Re: Mobile Home Park Owner Won't Remove a Potentially Dangerous Tree on Our Lot

    Quote Quoting aardvarc
    View Post
    Is this a mobile home that you placed on the property, or was already ON this lot and you moved into it? (just trying to figure out who thought placing the home 3 inches from the tree was a good idea to begin with.)

    I'm in agreement with Mr. K. and jk - at this time, the tree doesn't appear problematic nor danger imminent. You'll have an uphill battle arging about POSSIBLE future problems from what appears to be a healthy tree (and in light of the answer to my question above). That tree could just as easily keep your mobile home from blowing away in a storm. A diseased or compromised tree on the other hand, increases liability on the landlord should some natural weather occurrance create damage. If you've got some evidence that the tree is compromised in some way, you'll want to keep those photos or that evidence handy in case some issue does develop. Your avenues for legal recourse occur when/if there are ACTUAL damages. The more evidence you gather to show that (a) there was an actual problem and (b) that the landlord refused to act to resolve it, the stronger your case will be, should it get that far.

    And, as Mr. K. suggested, get on the phone to the power company regarding the lines.
    The area we live in is well known for it's high winds and violent thunderstorms. Just last week we had a storm and a maple tree almost identical to ours snapped near the bottom and fell on the power lines just 200 yards from our home. I think that gives us good reason to insist the tree that hugs our home be removed. Or is it best we just pray it doesn't fall on our home and kill us both? I'm getting mixed messages here. I contacted Legal Aid in NH and was told what I already figured: That it is the Owner's responsibility to have that tree cut down because it presents a clear danger to our trailer.....as well as our lives. I guess I'll contact a professional attorney. Thanks for everyone's feedback.

    aardvarc, in answer to your question, the trailer was already on this lot when we moved into it

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Posts
    27,034

    Default Re: Mobile Home Park Owner Won't Remove a Potentially Dangerous Tree on Our Lot

    can you do us a favor and kill the bold and enlarged type? It makes things hard to read.


    Not sure why your insurance wouldn't cover damage from the tree. It is the same as if a neighbors tree was taken down by an act of God and damaged a house. The neighbor is not liable so your own homeowners insurance takes care of it. If you have only some form of liability or contents coverage, then something like that wouldn't cover the tree damage. If that is the problem, you need to purchase the proper insurance.

    So, if this presents a danger as it is, are you going to argue about any tree that is close enough to fall on your home if the wind knocked it over? This tree is no more a danger than a 60 foot tall tree only 30 feet from your house. Should a 60 foot tall tree 30 feet from your house fall, it is going to cause damage as well.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Posts
    7

    Default Re: Mobile Home Park Owner Won't Remove a Potentially Dangerous Tree on Our Lot

    AARDVARC, anyone with half an ounce of gray matter would KNOW this tree is dangerous.

    As you so eloquently put it JK, "I am not an attorney and any advice is not to be construed as legal advice. You might even want to ignore my advice. Actually, there are plenty of real attorneys that you might want to ignore as well." Thanks for your input.

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