John Oliver and ‘The Good Place’ Actress D’Arcy Carden on Why Mobile Homes are ‘Financially Catastrophic’

“Last Week Tonight” host shows how private equity firms are preying on millions of low-income Americans

Last Updated: April 8, 2019 @ 8:15 AM

Mobile homes have become increasingly poor investments for millions of Americans, with many owners essentially being extorted by shady companies offering financing or operating the parks they’re located in, John Oliver explained on the latest episode of “Last Week Tonight” on Sunday evening.

For years, commercials have made buying mobile homes look more attractive than they really are, Oliver said at the beginning of the segment, before enlisting D’Arcy Carden of “The Good Place” to film a more realistic mobile home ad.

Oliver ripped into Clayton Homes, owned by billionaire investor Warren Buffett, and other private equity firms for buying mobile home parks and raising rents on low-income Americans — exacerbating the chasm between rich and poor even more. “The homes of some the poorest people in America are being snapped up by some of the richest people in America,” he said.

Oliver pointed to one expert who said mobile homes are the one place you live in that goes down in value, saying its similar to living in your car. Another issue: it’s hard to move mobile homes, despite their name. One woman in Oliver’s piece said it would cost $20,000 to move her home from one park to the next to avoid an increased rent.

Watch the video above to learn more.