Tenants living at Old Orchard Village and Atlantic Village fear a new owner could try to price them out.

OLD ORCHARD BEACH, Maine — Earlier this month, residents living at two mobile home parks in Old Orchard Beach learned they’re for sale.

A group of people who live at Old Orchard Village and Atlantic Village are attempting to form a tenants’ cooperative to try and buy the parks for themselves.

But it’s no small task.

Before the end of March, 51 percent of tenants need to support the co-op. After that, they need to secure financial backing.

Residents say there are rumors an out-of-state company is offering more than $40 million for the property.

“Nothing is guaranteed, but we’re hopeful,” Laurie Staebler said. “We’re willing to work and we’ve been going out knocking on doors, talking to people to see if we can move forward with this.”

Residents like Staebler fear a new owner could raise their rents and force them out.

“They’re crying,” Sandra Ossolinski said about her neighbors. “They think they’re going to be out on the street, and it breaks my heart.”

Right now, Ossolinski says it costs around $500 per month for the land the mobile homes they own are on.

“I could see this desirable park being turned into high-end housing,” resident Barbara Huntress-Rather said.

NEWS CENTER Maine has reached out to the park’s sellers, but they could not be reached for comment by the time the story aired.

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By sunsang