Reporter Bob McCoppin learned about this story from TribLocal reporter Jeff Danna who covers Glenview. Sunset Village, a mobile home park in otherwise pricey Glenview, is in foreclosure. Residents fear they may lose their homes, so are trying to partner with a non-profit agency to buy and save the property.
McCoppin says what first struck him about this story was the residents' well-tended, attractive homes and yards. He also noticed how there seemed to be a divide between the wealthier, newer residents in bigger homes in the front of the park, and the people in older, smaller homes in the back of the park.
Now the residents face rising rents, possible eviction and poor water service -- and they can’t afford to move.
On the other side of the equation is Richard Klarchek, a man who made millions from running mobile home parks and who gets around by helicopter, but now says he is bankrupt. Klarchek is bartering or selling personal possessions such as $200,000 candelabras, a $260,000 Italian chandelier and a Louis XIV silk tablecloth for $176,000.
He put his Lake Geneva lodge on the market but still owns a penthouse in Chicago. The mobile home residents were very friendly but Klarchek wouldn’t talk to our reporters and answer the question: Why did this happen?
-- Bob McCoppin
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