What is for Sale?
The general public may purchase these trailers at a reasonable cost. The condition of these trailers range from significantly damaged to like new. Many of them are over three years old and have been stored outside in the elements. Would be buyers can expect to have to do at least some repairs to the trailers. The average price of a FEMA travel trailer is $6,936 and the average price of a FEMA mobile home is $11,479.
How are They Sold?
Once FEMA management decides to dispose of said trailers they turn them over to the General Services Administration (GSA). The GSA follows a protocol of disposal first offering the trailers to other federal agencies.
If no other federal agencies have use for the trailers, they are then offered to the State Agency for Surplus Property in each state and territory. Individual State Agency for State Surplus Property (SASP) agents are also allowed to work with their area non-profits to see if any of those agencies have use for the trailers.
Once all of those disposal options have been exhausted the GSA then makes the trailers available for sale to the general public through the GSA website. Those members of the general population, who are interested in purchasing the FEMA trailers, or any other piece of government surplus, should go to the GSA Auctions web site to review what is available for public sale.
What are the Terms and Conditions of the Sale?
The rules of the GSA auction are similar to any other auction. Would be buyers bid on the items they want. The winner of the bid must have the entire purchase price monies on hand as there are no other payment options.
When purchasing items through the GSA potential buyers must keep in mind that they assume all costs associated with the sale and that the items are being sold “as is”. The buyer waives all rights to refunds, returns or damages. Purchasing costs can include but are not limited to; transportation, repair, and any necessary licenses or inspections.
Purchasers of travel trailers are also required to sign a “Buyer’s Certificate”. The “Buyer’s Certificate” acknowledges that the travel trailer will not be used or re-sold for use as housing.
Purchasers of mobile homes do not have to sign a “Buyer’s Certificate.” Instead they must work with the Department of Housing and Urban Development to ensure that the mobile home is in compliance with all applicable laws.
It should also be noted that in the advent that the initial purchaser wishes to re-sell the trailer they must provide the new buyer with at least three pieces of critical reference materials that were provided to them by the GSA during the initial sale. Those reference materials are entitled as follows; “Indoor Air Quality and Health in FEMA Temporary Housing”, “What You Should Know About Formaldehyde in Mobile Homes” and “Formaldehyde Exposure in Homes: A Reference for State Officials to Use in Decision Making.”
As of 2010 FEMA still had several trailers that the GSA was trying to dispose of through public auction. FEMA officials expect their surplus trailer inventory to be completely disposed of by 2013.