City Councils tables zoning appeal, how old is too old for modular homes

An appeal came before the Natchitoches City Council at its Oct. 25 meeting to review a decision made by the Natchitoches Planning and Zoning Commission at its Sept. 6 meeting that denied the application by Lamb Investments LLC for a variance request for Carter’s Trailer Park, located at 1815 South Dr.

The Council’s final decision was to table this item so they could look more closely at a City Ordinance that requires modular homes put into trailer parks be no more than 5 years old. The representatives from Lamb Investments explained that they’d like the variance so they can purchase homes as old as 1996.

The company has 6,000 trailer pads in communities from Biloxi to Houston. They bring in quality used homes into the trailer parks they purchase to provide affordable housing to residents. They estimate that a new home, plus lot rent, will end up costing the buyer around $1,000 per month. Their goal is to purchase quality older model homes to provide residents with lower monthly notes (around $500 per month).

“We’re not talking about homes that look awful,” said one representative, who said they’d rather bring in homes that people will be proud to have in Natchitoches. Their goal is to make every home in the community look nice, so they plan to help current residents fix up the existing homes with paint and skirting.

Council member Christ Petite expressed concern that modular homes from the 90s may be too old, but the representatives assured him that the homes they purchase are inspected by their vendor for overall quality.

Purchasing new homes just isn’t financially feasible for the investors because they want their homes to be affordable, so that people jump at the opportunity to move into the park.

There are 76 pads in the park and around 30 are currently available. They also allow people to place their own home on one of the available pads.

The Council seemed to agree that they wanted to look at the ordinance that restricts the age requirement for homes because it may be too restrictive. The item was tabled so it could be brought up at the next City Council meeting, which will be held on Monday, Nov. 14 at 5:30 pm.