WHEN AND HOW MUCH MAY I CHARGE FOR GUEST FEES? CAN I INSIST A LONG-TERM GUEST BE SCREENED AND ADDED TO THE RENTAL AGREEMENT? IF SO, WHEN?

RCW 59.20.060 (2) (a) prohibits a rental agreement from requiring that a guest pay a guest-parking fee, unless a violation of the rules for guest parking occurs. This same provision allows a community owner to charge a guest parking fee ‘which covers an extended period of time”, which duration is defined in the rental agreement.

As for guest “occupancy” fees, RCW 59.20.060 (2) (f) prohibits the community owner from charging a fee for guests, but does allow a landlord to establish a rule that a fee is charged for guests remaining on community property more than fifteen days in any sixty-day period.

You can (and should) insist that long-term guests be screened and added to the rental agreement. In fact, you can (and should) require that all guest register with management, regardless of the length of stay. “Registration” should include some initial screening just to assure that the guest does not impose a danger to the community. A person’s name, address, date of birth and social security number can be used to trace criminal activity as convictions are matters of public records.

It is a good practice to state in your rental agreement that any guest staying in excess of thirty days must apply for tenancy and be added to the rental agreement or vacate park property (and that any guest applying for occupancy and obtaining a denial shall also forthwith vacate community property).

You may also want to require any guest staying longer than 15 days in a 60-day period to convert to an “occupant” and be listed on the rental agreement as an “occupant”. By virtue of the 1999 amendments to the MHLTA, there is no question that an “occupant” is subject to all requirements of the MHLTA. How the MHLTA applies to guests is still a gray area.