50 Years in MH and…?

April 22nd, 2015 No comments

Manufactured Housing Pros, imagine the following. You are part of a business that has been ‘in the MH business’ for 10, 20, 30 or even 50+ years. You clearly are successful! Not many can say their firm has been around that long. That’s an advantage, right?

But is there also a disadvantage to the above scenario?

Is there also a disadvantage for an industry that has been around successfully for 60+ years, and suddenly faces a dizzying array of challenges?

Not long ago, your Masthead scribe was at breakfast with a pair of MH lenders. One was a seasoned veteran, and frankly one of my favorite gents in any aspect of MH. The other had less than 2 years in our industry. This 30 something manager, with a good track record in another field, proceeded to politely blast (perhaps unintentionally) the two of us and the industry as a whole. Paraphrasing, ‘Aging industries often end up in denial over what is causing their fall.’ Ouch.

At the other end of the scale is a comment today from a respected, successful corporate leader. Paraphrasing, ‘A banker called to ask me for some insights about MH, because he read we were on a list of sectors used by investors that projected 25% growth in the next two years.’

We at MHProNews are true believers, proven by the fact that we opened at the very time the industry was sliding to its lowest point in MH history. We are confident in the strong potential for MH. There has been a steady uptick since 2009. But can and should we do much better? Yes.

Now, let’s go back to that successful firm that is making money and have stood the test of time. Does their longevity perhaps suggest possible vulnerabilities? Yes.

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The Need for New Eyes

There is a need for ‘new eyes’ for even the most successful professionals. Everyone who has achieved a good measure of financial advancement is vulnerable to the notion that since they are successful, they must be doing everything right. Yet right in front of them may be challenges they simply don’t see because they are used to what they see.

All of us, from time to time, need ‘new eyes.’ We need a fresh perspective. We may need an outsider to come in, look around, and say -

  • Here are the reasons why you have dozens (or hundreds) of vacancies in your MHC(s).

  • Here are the reasons why your MH sales center is stuck in single digits sales monthly.

  • Here are the reasons why your HUD Code MH or MOD builder is not attracting the caliber of consumers their products merit.

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When there are MH Communities that are near or at capacity in a market similar to those that have high vacancies, that suggests the other should be full too.’

When a well known HUD Code builder is telling its own people that ‘the best year we’ve ever had saw 11% growth.’ and they use that as a reason why the industry isn’t growing faster, there is something missing. We know a HUD Code builder who has grown much faster, is profitable and has a growing, glowing reputation.

When MH Retailers no longer believe they can do volume, or avoid land/home deals for rather thin reasons, these and other examples are signs of organizations that are in a keen need of new eyes.

For tonight, let’s say the obvious. When the blinders are removed, and professionals are open to positive change, solid, sustainable growth happens. We’ll dive deeply into the issues we are noting in the days ahead. ##

latonykovach-louisiville2015-mhpronews-business-building-seminars-By L. A. ‘Tony’ Kovach.

L.A. 'Tony' Kovach, MHM - Publisher, Marketing Director and Industry Consultant
http://www.linkedin.com/in/latonykovach
Manufactured Home Marketing Sales Management trade journal
www.MHMarketingSalesManagement.com aka MHMSM.com aka MHProNews.com
tony@mhmsm.com
863-213-4090
 


Vincible or Invincible Ignorance and Contemporary Manufactured Housing

April 19th, 2015 No comments

I was listening as an educated gentleman explained that contrary to popular opinion, ignorance isn’t bliss. Quite so. Tens of millions today are ignorant of the facts about contemporary manufactured housing and its appealing, green, quality affordable living realities. What is the solution?

We don’t know what we don’t know. This is true of us and others.

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Let’s use a little common sense today that can point the way to MH growth, shall we? We begin with a proper understanding of 3 terms and how they apply to our industry’s situation, starting with the word “ignorance.”

Google rendered this definition of ignorance:

ig·no·rance

ˈiɡnərəns/

noun

1. lack of knowledge or information.

“he acted in ignorance of basic procedures”

2. synonyms: incomprehension of, unawareness of, unconsciousness of, unfamiliarity with, inexperience with, lack of knowledge about, lack of information about.

 Ignorance is not a crime. Nor is it an insult to be ignorant about a subject. The fact is that we are all ignorant about many things. To be ignorant means to be uniformed about a thing. The vast majority of people are ignorant of the realities of manufactured housing today.

We won’t use vincible and invincible ignorance in the same sense that medieval moral theologians, such as the brilliant St. Thomas Aquinas would have done. Instead, what we will use is a strict rendering of the term. To be vincible, means one can ‘vanquish’ or ‘conquer’ something. To be invincible means the opposite, it can’t be conquered.

Google defined invincible ignorance this way.

  1. The invincible ignorance fallacy is a deductive fallacy of circularity where the person in question simply refuses to believe the argument, ignoring any evidence given. (Italics added for emphasis.)

Some people will simply refuse to be moved by reality, even if it is demonstrated to them.Don’t bother me with the facts, my mind is made up!” summarizes that sort of approach taken by some. We won’t spend time today on how to unlock such a mind, rather, we should focus our energy on those millions who are open to whatever the truth of a subject reveals.

Vincible ignorance is a form of ignorance that can be overcome by education or information. When someone is willing to learn, they fall into this category. This group includes those seeking a solution to a problem. With incomes down, and housing costs rising, there are plenty of people seeking an answer that we happen to have to their housing and budget needs.

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Manufactured housing is an amazing product that fills the basic necessity of shelter. Some want or can afford only the utterly most essential form of shelter. That’s an important market one that MH serves better than almost any one else can claim to do.

Others who have more means may want and have the ability to go behind the basics of shade from the elements. This second audience is arguably far larger in the U.S.. If we want to grow our industry past its current low levels, we must expand our reach into current and larger groups we can serve.

We do this by overcoming vincible ignorance. We do this through information, education and creating compelling and appealing messages.

Different Strokes for Different Folks

While no two people are alike, there are basic personality types that we tend to fall into. So no one message will appeal to everyone. Some will find this blog post more appealing than others. What this means is that in the ideal, you don’t do a one size fits all message, you use multiple forms of messaging until you find the best combination for the widest possible audiences.

That’s a function of marketing, or to rephrase, story telling.

Want to grow our industry? We must include outreaches to those who might be ignorant of MH at present, would be good prospects for our homes and are willing to learn the modern realities when properly approached. Because there are different personality types, as noted, this means you need a variety of messages, types and styles.

We will look at this more in the days ahead. But for now, let me suggest two pairs of two points.

  1. Education must be:

a) internal to our industry’s members as well as

b) external to our target audiences.

  1. Many different forms of information or ‘story telling’ ought to be used.

a) Video is one of those, and

b) by using video interviews with a wide variety of personalities, we will over time build up a library of stories with talking points that will resonate with the industry pro and the public at large.

The slow ‘death’ of TV could be creating a significant opportunity for MH. See this weekend’s Cutting Edge Blog post on powerful ways to overcome ignorance.

New topic, mid week. Please check back, thank you. ##

latonykovach-us-supreme-court-washington-dc-posted-masthead-blog-mhpronews-By L. A. ‘Tony’ Kovach.

L.A. 'Tony' Kovach, MHM - Publisher, Marketing Director and Industry Consultant
http://www.linkedin.com/in/latonykovach
Manufactured Home Marketing Sales Management trade journal
www.MHMarketingSalesManagement.com aka MHMSM.com aka MHProNews.com
tony@mhmsm.com
863-213-4090
 


Post-HR 650 Passage. New MH Lender? Manufactured Housing Professional Landscape…

April 15th, 2015 No comments

The Manufactured Housing (MH) industry has never been monolithic. There has been and always will be various voices and groups within the industry landscape. Part of our challenge in getting a bill such as HR 650/Preserving Access to Manufactured Housing passed – great job to all who made it happen! – is that we do have a wide array of interests that fall under the MH Pro umbrella.

If we looked back into the past, the reason that the Manufactured Housing Association for Regulatory Reform (MHARR) exists is because the smaller, independent producers of HUD Code manufactured homes felt the bigger MH builders were pushing for (or not opposing) regulations and policies that were contrary to their interests.

What would happen if larger builders and mid-to-smaller ones became comfortable enough with each other so that they were all under the same joint association flag? Do you see 2 different national associations for real estate agents?

Jim-Clayton-Kevin-Kimzey-Scott-Roberts-ParisHotel-LasVegas2015-manufacturedhomelendingcommunities-mhpronews-com-500x375-

Left to right: Ernesto, Jim Clayton, Scott Roberts, Shaun (sp?) and Kevin Kimzey.
some of the Who’s Who In manufactured housing at the 2015 Congress and Expo.

Please don’t misread that as a call for unity, that would be premature. It is just to make the point that follows.

Namely, that because we are not unified, because we have so many divergent groups and views, it creates issues for an industry of our size given the various challenges we face. This is why serious industry growth has to be a top priority, more on that point at this link and in the near term too.

As an FYI, MHARR didn’t oppose HR 650. I’m told that any time their office was contacted about the issue, they gave verbal support for the bill’s passage. It is just that MHARR is more focused on GSE reform, a worthy cause and another topic for another day. Now, back to the HR 650 topic..

By contrast, those who advocate on behalf of the presumed interests of consumers are very united. They managed to get a chorus of articles published before and after the passage of HR 650. While they’ve been framed as an attack on specific industry lenders and companies, that is almost like bait – wedge politics – or divide and conquer strategies that sometimes are cooked up to achieve a given group’s goal.

I’ve already been told, there are two lines in the sand the anti-HR 650 forces have marshaled.

john-walters-anthony-ducharme-barry-noffsinger-san-antonio-credit-union-ballys-conference-sutie-las-vegas2015-manufactured-home-lenders-mhpronews-500x375

Some of the management and leadership from San Antonio Credit Union,
present at the 2015 Congress and Expo, in a private meeting.
Left to right, John Walters, CU Factory Built Lending, Anthony Ducharme, Mountainside Financial
and Barry Noffsinger, CU Factory Built Lending.

  • First, I’m told by ‘pro-consumer’ voices that they expect our fix for Dodd-Frank to be stopped in the Senate. Hmm…

  • Next, we are reminded that POTUS (the President of the United States) Barack Obama has already signaled that he will veto HR 650 if it hits his desk.

Now imagine that 2nd point! Here we have a nation that can’t get our policies straight with who are and are not state sponsors of terror overseas. POTUS wants to normalize relations with Iran and Cuba, has threatened to punish Israel and won’t support the Ukraine with weapons while they are being invaded by Russia. We have all kinds of domestic and international issues as a nation…

and the president is taking the time to tell us he’ll veto a fix for Dodd-Frank?  What’s up with that?

view-from-ballys-suite-for-mhpronews-mhlivingnews-manufacturedhousingprofessionalnews-480x650- (1)

View from the MHProNews suite,
overlooking Paris Hotel Complex in Las Vegas.

Story Telling Time…

We have to get better at telling our own stories and those of our home owners. Period. Some of these are complex issues. I see industry pros whose eyes glaze over when you start talking about why personal property (home only/chattel lending) rates are what they are. It isn’t predatory lending, its called pricing for the risk and costs, which by the way, regulations have increased both risks and costs!

So if it isn’t easy for a number of professionals, how can it be made easy to understand for the public at large?

That’s not an excuse not to try! It is a call to action to do what it takes to make the case.

Then perhaps well intentioned but ill informed voices – the opposition groups to HR 650 that wag their fingers at industry lenders – who have rates higher than site built housing rate. Do they not have a clue, apparently, as to what the GAO’s report that came out last year said about MH lending? Or they’ve ignored the facts that have come out. Either its sloppy research or its agenda driven, take you pick.

The article below and those links within that article give an array of facts that will get you or anyone armed to understand and explain the finance issues surrounding MH and personal property lending.

http://manufacturedhomelivingnews.com/congress-dont-be-fooled-the-upcoming-vote-on-preserving-access-to-manufactured-housing-act-hr-650/

The link above has been privately praised by industry leaders as a good, generic response to some of the attacks on HR 650. We’ve had small to large players say, thank you, great job, excellent, etc. on the above. Please keep this page book marked, and share it often with media and those in public office, it is there to support your efforts.

Because collectively – you, us, others – we are the ones who are fighting for consumers rights! For the rights of millions of MH owners across America! They deserve access to financing that will protect the value of their asset, that manufactured home they enjoy and benefit from.

Post HR 650

I’ve received this among the flurry of messages for and against HR 650, and the post HR 650 comments. It is from Tim Williams, Executive Director, Ohio Manufactured Homes Association (OMHA). It read in part as follows:

Thank you to our faithful OMHA members for submitting letters, emails, and making phone calls to your U.S. House Representatives asking for their support for our industry critical legislation H.R. 650– Preserving Access to Manufactured Housing Act.

But, we’re not done yet!  We eventually will need support from our Ohio Senators (Brown and Portman) to pass the companion bill S. 682 –Preserving Access to Manufactured Housing Act.

We could repeat that message from others across he country who have or soon will make that same kind of call to action.

Those perhaps well intentioned, but nevertheless misguided voices opposing HR 650 are ready to fight to the finish to keep Dodd-Frank from being changed. Are you ready to pick up the phone or email to ask your Senator or the Senator’s staffers for support on this bill? That call just takes a few moments.

Here is our post HR650 Daily Business News article. It shows who voted for what, Congressman Fincher’s statement and more. Kudos to all who made the efforts to make this happen! Our thanks for all who voted for this critically important pro-consumer and MH homeowner bill.

CFPB on Site at the MHI Congress and Expo event, Again…

I had a brief but pleasant chat with Marie Whittaker, a Market Analyst from the Office of Mortgage Markets for the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB). This is the second year I’ve known of someone from the CFPB coming to this MHI event. Our tax dollars are clearly hard at work, as Marie is here to learn more about the MH industry.

RonThomasSr-LouisvilleShowChairman-ScottMcFarland-CharlesGoetze-HAS-Capital-MarieWhittaker-CFPB-MHProNews-com-

Left to Right, Ron Thomas Sr – Chairman of the MIdwest Manufactured Housing Federation, Scott Macfarlane and Charlie Goetze, HAS Capital and Marie Whittaker, CFPB.

I’m hoping Marie and the CFPB will look carefully at the article linked above and the various articles linked from it. Let me share the link with Marie and the CFPB anew, here, for their convenience.

An anti HR 650 source told me that facts matter. Indeed! I reminded that source that millions have been cut off from the financing they may need soon, should they sell their home. No reply to my counterpoint…because it is hard to answer the truth that you oppose when faced by its realities.

Need for changes?

Are there changes need in MH finance? You bet. We aren’t blindly supporting HR 650. There are voices in our industry’s ranks that see that issue differently too. But the point is this is a useful and important step, perhaps more for home owners with values under 20k to 25k than for the industry itself.

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Credit scores have generally improved since this graphic from the Deseret News
was first published. While it is noble to serve the working class, and we should not
abandon serving that important market, we must get better at reaching out the
broader housing market. That is where opportunities aplenty exist.

reed-construction-us-census-bureau-mhpronews-daily-business-news-g

Why are we stuck in the 60,000+ range of MHShipments,
when we are in a trillion dollar a year housing industry
with about 1 million new housing MF and SF starts in 2014?

New MH Lender?

We’ve been talking and hinting for some months that there is a new lender coming into the space. Actually, there is more than one, nibbling at or check out MH financing. One of these has made the scene at Congress and Expo. Let me call it HAS Capital, Version 2.0. They are led by Scott Macfarlane, formerly the VP that led the MH program with U.S. Bank.

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Scott Macfarlane has joined the HAS Capital team in a leadership role.
More on this developing story in MH home only lending in the days ahead.

Scott is taking on a leadership role in HAS operation. Official title, President of Originations. They are going to be bringing a new game to town. More on that in the days ahead, but keep your eye on developments from this one.

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manufactured-housing-mobile-home-shipments-graph-chart-calculatedrisk-posted-masthead-blog-mhpronews-com-1-575x349

In a trillion dollar housing annual U.S. Housing Market, MH has and can do much better than it is.
We can sustainably and responsibly rebuild to a 500,000 new MH produced a year industry.

mhpronews-new-manufactured-home-shipment-graph-since2008-a

Ladies and gents, it is time to wrap this for now. Our great industry is at a cross roads, and many in our ranks don’t see it. There are opportunities aplenty for those doing the business well and properly. There are opportunities for those who go after serving not only the entry level market, but those who have cash or good credit. We are uniquely positioned to ‘do all of the above.’  Let’s borrow the Nike slogan.  Just do it. ##

By L. A. “Tony” Kovach.

latonykovach-us-supreme-court-washington-dc-posted-masthead-blog-mhpronews-By L. A. ‘Tony’ Kovach.

L.A. 'Tony' Kovach, MHM - Publisher, Marketing Director and Industry Consultant
http://www.linkedin.com/in/latonykovach
Manufactured Home Marketing Sales Management trade journal
www.MHMarketingSalesManagement.com aka MHMSM.com aka MHProNews.com
tony@mhmsm.com
863-213-4090
 


Post – BP Oil Spill – Lessons for Manufactured Housing?

April 12th, 2015 No comments

A quick Google search on what is being said about BP after the Gulf of Mexico oil spill a few years ago revealed web-news headlines like the ones that follow.

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Notice the above isn’t a bad headline, if you are BP. What the Huffington Post is saying is that the environment has improved, while BP has improved (financially) even more. Then there is this headline…

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BP routinely runs TV and cable ads, touting how much they are doing and have done since the Gulf oil spill. Do you ever stop and buy gas at a BP station? Have you noticed how clean and modern and ‘green’ they look?

BP and the Gulf disaster – Lessons for MH?

We don’t need a disaster like BP’s to be facing a routine drum beat of negative media.

In the prior Masthead, we talked about the three options the industry has for dealing with bad news that pops up in the mainstream media. Hey, we are pro-Industry. That means we also have to be pro-consumer. I hear often that “most of the bad guys are gone from our industry now.” What I can say from first hand experience is that we routinely deal with good people who want to do justice to home buyers, MHC residents and others. The folks we work with want to ‘do it right.’

So if we have so many good guys out there, why do we still see such a routine string of head ache and heart ache headlines? The answer is suggested in the link above.

Lemonade_photo courtesy of_jaimeanne

“When Life hands you Lemons, make Lemonade,” photo courtesy of jaimeanne.

By contrast, BP turned lemons into lemonade. They turned huge fines into a marketing campaign. They spent billions, and touted every cent of it, so that the public would essentially pay the way for a chunk of the Gulf recovery – BP just happened to be the conduit.

When you good, good people admit it. Right? Good people have a habit of trying to fix things when something goes wrong. Good people in MH must learn from the experiences we’ve had for too many years, as well as from the turn-around-the-image stories such as BP’s.

40 Years of the Wrong Approach?

When tornado season stared to approach, Jen Hall the Executive Director of the MMHA, got ahead of the ball. Hall engaged weather pros and the media. Jen correctly made the issue one of proper installation.

The result was far more favorable coverage. That was smart. Will we learn from that example?

Here is an example below of how doing a ‘correction’ article with the right strategy landed us immediately under the Daily Yonder’s flawed column on MH and MH lending.

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So there are these and other examples of doing things a better way in MH. But we have all too many examples of pros who want to let whatever the bad news story is ‘blow over,’ and hopefully get forgotten.

While we have grown new home sales for 5 years, new home shipments levels at under 70,000 a year should tell us that ‘ignore the bad news’ approach isn’t working.

Tiny Houses

Not all Tiny Houses are on wheels and a frame, but many shown on Tiny House Nation are. Many of those Tiny Houses are as much or more dollars per square foot as a new conventional construction is. They have zoning issues, as Jon Stossel reported on his show. Tiny Houses are difficult or nearly impossible to finance. They are far less secure than even a pre-HUD Code mobile home that is 38+ years old.

So why do Tiny Houses get so much media love? Why doesn’t MH get that love too?

We define ourselves or others will define us

As an industry, we have to lift each other up. In the video interview with Chet Murphree and James McGee from Deer Valley Homebuilders, notice how Chet praises other builders? It is a mistake to do otherwise. Sure, you want to showcase what makes YOU good! But there is no need to undercut a competitor. We are still too small an industry to do so.

That doesn’t mean you have to build up the lone wolf who behaves like one. With your clients, prospects or the general public, you say nothing if there is truly no good to be said. If pressed, you run your business your way, they run theirs as they decided to do.

But even the bad news that hits someone else, can be an opportunity for them and all, if it is properly approached.

But the first and most fundamental issue is this. If there is something wrong, it has to be addressed. Don’t duck it. Don’t hide it. Fix it. Make it a learning experience to improve.

Hey, we strive to practice what we preach. When we goof, we want to learn and fix from there too.

HR 650 Vote

My congressman was contacted when HR 650 first came up, and he is on board. How about yours?

Special interest groups that may love MH, but who:

  • don’t understand

  • or have an agenda about our home-only lending,

are using the media any way they can to derail HR 650.

Those groups want to parade a handful of unhappy souls out, instead of focusing on the millions who the industry has served well. We can talk about those who lost their houses for whatever reason, but what about the far greater number who have them, paid them off, and love their homes? Would millions have had their homes without that personal property lending???

We are saddened when astronauts died in their efforts to advance space travel. But we didn’t stop the space program because of those loses. We look at the overall good, right?

Help us, help you help the millions negatively impacted by Dodd-Frank. Please turn to MHLivingNews at the link below.

http://manufacturedhomelivingnews.com/congress-dont-be-fooled-the-upcoming-vote-on-preserving-access-to-manufactured-housing-act-hr-650/

Please, pass that link on.

Then, pass on the stories of happy home owners of MH. Let’s learn the lesson of BP. Let’s learn that even tragedy, like in the space program, doesn’t mean we stop doing something good and worth while.

America needs what we have. Improved image with improved performance will yield ever greater success for our customers and for us as professionals. That’s my story, and we are sticking with it. Join or help accelerate the effort. ##

latonykovach-us-supreme-court-washington-dc-posted-masthead-blog-mhpronews-By L. A. ‘Tony’ Kovach.

L.A. 'Tony' Kovach, MHM - Publisher, Marketing Director and Industry Consultant
http://www.linkedin.com/in/latonykovach
Manufactured Home Marketing Sales Management trade journal
www.MHMarketingSalesManagement.com aka MHMSM.com aka MHProNews.com
tony@mhmsm.com
863-213-4090
 


Manufactured Home Industry re-Targeted?

April 8th, 2015 No comments

 

We won’t talk in detail about the 3rd – and most recent – frontal assault by media outlet(s) that have targeted the manufactured housing sector. I’ll mention the first of the three articles immediately below, because we published a reply that included on-the-record comments from a variety of MH Industry pros.

Hidden-High-Costs-of-Mobile-Homes-Daily-Yonder-Google-Search-Result-posted-industry-in-focus-MHProNews-com-

http://www.mhpronews.com/home/industry-news/industry-in-focus/9233-correcting-errors-in-the-hidden-high-costs-of-mobile-homes-lance-george-daily-yonder

The question for today is, what should MH Pros do when the industry gets unfairly slammed by the media?

Generally speaking, here are the 3 broad brush options…

1) Say or do little or nothing.

2) Provide some response, but don’t invest too much time, money or effort.

3) In addition to a response (#2 above), Energize the Long-Overdue Marketing, PR, Educational/Image Campaign.

Let’s look at each of the above in the same sequence below.

1a) Our industry has done this – “do nothing, hope it blows over” and people forget-about-it – for decades. Where has that policy landed us? If you like shipments under 70,000 new MHs a year, when we’ve been as high as 372,000+ shipments in 1998 – then by all means, this is the strategy to pick (yes, that is sarcasm).

2a) This approach is better than the “do nothing, hope it blows over” approach immediately above. It is useful in influencing the more serious researcher, who will ‘google search’ after bad news hits. Given good SEO on the response article or info, it is clearly better than nothing. See the screen-capture graphic of an actual recent demo result, above.

3a) There are those who realize that to get a better result, we must make a change that actually advances and tackle such issues, while promoting our own good name. This is clearly the way to go. Here’s why.

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We either Define Ourselves, or Others will Define Us

Others may define us to our detriment. They may do so out of ignorance, malice, a hidden or visible agendas of their own, etc..

Good MH News Too!

Let’s be clear. There is in fact more good MH News than bad. I’m not talking about what the media publishes, but what the reality is with actual MH home owners and millions of satisfied MHC residents!

But you may not get that impression from recent media accounts, or from media accounts over the years.

We clearly must be engaged – in a collaborative way – to properly level the playing field for MH. There is an affordable housing crisis. In 2013, reports were published saying we needed 20 million new housing units by 2030. That didn’t include replacement housing for aged, storm damaged or burned out site built housing. That 20 million new homes needed was just the number required to keep up with population growth.

There’s more:

  • Incomes are down from 6 years ago.

  • Seniors are retiring at the rate of over 10,000+ daily.

  • Rents keep rising, rental occupancy is high.

  • The recent Great Recession has caused people to rethink many things, including housing. Our opportunities are at a historic peak.

  • We have plenty of lending capacity to finance people with good credit.

  • The facts about MH are routinely in favor of our industry vs. conventional housing, even on subjects like tornadoes, energy savings, environmentally friendlier, durable, quality and the like.

Those MH Businesses investing in our efforts to showcase the Good News about contemporary Manufactured and Modular Homes continues to grow.

breaking-chains-masthead-blog-shutterstock-mhpronews-unlocking-minds-key-to-advance-

Please see the recent links below. Catch the vision for what is needed.

We must tell our good news stories. Your story. The story about the happy MHC resident/home owner. The MH home owners who have homes on privately owned land. The story of caring, committed businesses and MH Professionals. We must also tell the viewpoints of those from outside our Industry who have had the light bulb go off! When they’re ready to speak out on camera and/or in writing, to say that they know that America needs what we offer.

Because what we offer is the American Dream of Home Ownership. Quality, affordable living that is eco-friendly.

That’s a key message. Our challenge to you and your colleagues is simple. Be a part of the solution. Work with us. There are many ways to do so. What other viable current options are even out there?

When you tell your own story on your online or in print, it’s an ad in the minds of people. When you are interviewed, it’s third party. Authenticity comes across!

See the confidence and candor exuded by Alan Amy in this video, linked below.

Alan-Amy-ManufacturedHomeLivingNews-com-

http://manufacturedhomelivingnews.com/alan-amy-louisiana-manufactured-homes-inside-mh-video-home-tour-interview/

See the passion, wit and appeal projected by Bob and Chris in this video linked below.

bob-vanschuyver-chris-sliwinski-umh-model-village-design-center-video-manufacturedhomelivingnews-com-

http://manufacturedhomelivingnews.com/touring-a-manufactured-home-model-home-village-and-design-center-inside-mh-video/

See the passion, belief and commitment in Chet and James in this interview, linked below.

chet-murhpree-james-mcgee-deer-valley-homebuilders-manufactured-modular-homes-mhlivingnews-com--300x168

http://manufacturedhomelivingnews.com/chet-murphree-james-mcgee-deer-valley-homebuilders-inside-mh-video/

See the sincerity and pride in the home owners featured in this videos…

curtis-loraine-guthrie-williamsburgsquare-manufacturedhomelivingnews-com-

…and in the drone footage and home tour, all featured on this page:

the-green-at-vista-williamsburgsquare-adventure-model-home-manufacturedhomelivingnews-com-

http://manufacturedhomelivingnews.com/an-inside-look-at-manufactured-home-living-a-builders-and-home-owners-viewpoints/

See the sincerity of this contractor Wayne Hopper, who site builds and remodels houses, but praises modern Manufactured Homes.

wayne-hopper-builder-contractor-westville-in-videoed-new-durham-estates-creditmhlivingnews-com--660x330

http://manufacturedhomelivingnews.com/builder-wayne-hopper-compares-modern-manufactured-homes-with-conventional-construction-inside-mh-video/

These are the stories that will increasingly resonate with the:

  • general public,

  • investors,

  • government officials,

  • housing professionals,

  • and even some of those “bleed-to-lead” story media types, as well as with those responsible journalists who do want to do positive/balanced stories, not just slanted, negative ones.

No one person or company or association can do this Educational/PR/Image effort.

Rather, by working together, we forward thinkers and DOERS can unleash the production capacity of our factories! Because we can grow the respect and thus the demand for our homes among the credit worthy and cash buyers.

We can fill vacancies faster, turn homes in inventory more rapidly. All those vendors, financial service providers, associations and every profession our Industry touches has a stake in this.

We either define ourselves or others will define us. You have three choices, see them above. You vote not just with words, but also with your deeds.

We are better off working together. The good operations who care must pull together. Enough said for today, please check daily for MH Industry News, Tips and Views Pros can Use. © We’ll have a new topic for you here on the Masthead  this weekend. Until then, convert someone new TODAY to the MH Way! ##

latonykovach-louisiville2015-mhpronews-business-building-seminars-By L. A. “Tony” Kovach.

 

L.A. 'Tony' Kovach, MHM - Publisher, Marketing Director and Industry Consultant
http://www.linkedin.com/in/latonykovach
Manufactured Home Marketing Sales Management trade journal
www.MHMarketingSalesManagement.com aka MHMSM.com aka MHProNews.com
tony@mhmsm.com
863-213-4090
 


Passover, Good Friday  and Easter

April 3rd, 2015 6 comments

When you tune into cablecast news, it seems that much of the world is in the throes of religious wars.  While we don’t – yet – have a lot of violence from members of one faith against another here in the U.S., nevertheless we do see things such as the recent uproar over the Indiana religious liberty law; with the pro-LGBT movement targeting believers who opt to peacefully live out their faith as they understand it.

The LGBTers ought to fight to protect that pizza shop owners beliefs and rights.  After all, it is extremist Muslims who are killing homosexuals overseas, not Christians doing so.

It seems that what tolerance really means to some is that ‘you better see the world my way,’ or else suffer the verbal, financial or even physical attacks.  Here and abroad, we are witnessing defamation, pressure – and in places – even death on full display. That’s the real intolerance.

So it was thousands of years ago, before Moses lead his people out of the bondage of Egypt.  This is commemorated in part in the Feast of Passover.

Happy-Passover-2015-credit=wheniscalendar-posted-masthead-blog-mhpronews-

Credit: When Is Calendar.

For Christians, Passover took on a new meaning in the arrest, torture, execution by crucifixion of the Jew, Jesus of Nazareth.  That gruesome  death was followed by the Resurrection on Easter Sunday.  Believers see these acts as being done in atonement for the sins of man, individually and collectively, and that forgiveness could be claimed by the faithful.

finding-jesus-shroud-3cnn=credit-posted-masthead-blog-mhpronews-com-

Image credit: CNN.

CNN recently, and others over the years, have traced the steps science has taken in identifying the alleged burial cloth of Jesus – known today as the Shroud of Turin – and the associated burial head cloth, known in our times as the Sudarium of Oviedo.  Faith doesn’t lack historic and contemporary support, for those willing to see.

As we are in the midst of these religious holy days, it should give us pause to reflect on what happens in society and the world when people of faith are unjustly attacked, vilified and persecuted.

The Communists and Nazis caused suffering and death for tens of millions in the last century.  It was the persecution of believers that motivated many to come to America centuries ago, in search of religious freedom.  It seems religious liberty and personal freedom have a connection.

We in the housing business sell a home to anyone who can qualify and afford one.  That includes people of faith, agnostics too, or even atheists. We routinely publish new articles on Fair Housing, penned by a legal expert, to remind all of the law on such matters.

That said, we ought not sit idly by while militant groups unjustly persecute others for their beliefs.

Some in the ranks of MH Professionals object to unfair treatment by the media, public officials or others.  Some understand the value of modern MH. We want the truth about our product and services known, so more can benefit and we can thereby prosper.  We want the rights of our business and home owners to be respected and protected.

But rights and truth aren’t something  found in a vacuum. They exist precisely in a well ordered society.   Your rights to do business honorably don’t exist apart from the rights of others to live their lives in peace and justice too.

For any who think that one faith is no different than another, all one has  to do is look around.   Watch the news.  Those terrorists groups are not flying a Christian or Jewish banner as they kidnap, kill, or blow up shops, malls, churches and schools.  No nation is perfect.  But the Israeli government isn’t repeatedly threatening the destruction of Iran, it is the other way around.

religious-easter-2015-4-credit-happy-easter2015-com-posted-mastheadblog=mhpronews-com-

Image credit: Easter 2015.

I can promote the good word about manufactured housing, because we live in a nation with a Constitution that protects what the Declaration of Independence called our God-given rights. As soon as we leave the moorings of Constitutional safeguards, we tread into the choppy waters where force can be used against the nation’s citizens.

It is good to ponder the history of humanity, because one group oppressing another has long been part of it.  Atheistic regimes – Communists and Nazis – proved in the 20th century that the ‘no religion’ the Beatles sung about isn’t the solution.  Communists and Nazis had no religion, and they killed more people than all the religious wars combined.

By contrast, protecting the rights of people of faith who respect the rights of others is necessary for a just society.   One set of rights doesn’t exist apart from others.

Please give me believers in the Ten Commandments, those who seek to live those out in their lives over those who think they can rob, pillage, rape, torture, bully and brutalize others. Please give me those kinds of believers vs. those who do terrible  things in the name of politics or religion.

A friend of mine in the manufactured home building side of the industry sent me this today (Good Friday)…

Hi Tony, just had a plant wide meeting and told them, “Each time you drive a nail or hear one driven, think of what happened some 2000 years ago.”

We should not only celebrate the freedom that the Fourth of July reminds us of, but also the freedom that Passover and Easter recall too. We should then take that a step further, working to protect those liberties – safeguarded and lived in peace – for all people of good will. Your business or profession will have little meaning if at any time someone can come along and just take it from you by threat of arms, a false law, etc.  ##

tony- kovachBy L. A. “Tony” Kovach.

L.A. 'Tony' Kovach, MHM - Publisher, Marketing Director and Industry Consultant
http://www.linkedin.com/in/latonykovach
Manufactured Home Marketing Sales Management trade journal
www.MHMarketingSalesManagement.com aka MHMSM.com aka MHProNews.com
tony@mhmsm.com
863-213-4090
 


MH’s Amazing April 2015 – Navigating Threats, Growing Opportunities

April 1st, 2015 No comments

We are getting details ‘out there’ about the recent Tunica MH Show, and they reflect a growing trend of improvements for our factory-built home industry. We’ll share a video interview that has snippets from the new location for the Tunica Show below, along with a link to facts and figures that are important to all segments of our industry. 

Part of what our seminars and panel discussions covered in Tunica was ‘the future of manufactured housing.’  The topic covered both threats and opportunities. It will be one of the videos you should look for later in April.

It is our custom on the first Masthead post of the month to share the links to the new Featured Articles, in this case, for April 2015.  Those are below…

For example, you’ll see an article on Fair Housing by attorney Nadeen Green that ought to be an eye opener. In fact, it should be required reading for all who are managing or front line with the general public in selling or leasing homes.

home-sales-rising-housing-wire-com-credit-posted-masthead-blog-mhpronews-com-

Image credit – HousingWire.

Lenny Kopowski brings out a topic that is critical for our industry, zoning and pre-emption. This has national importance for HUD Code and modular builders, retailers and others.

Maureen McMullan joins us for the first time, with an article on housing booms, the Marcellus and how an MH firm is tackling that opportunity. It’s a good read!

Bob Vahsholtz continues a theme in his column that is near to many of our hearts. How do we get the MH industry back onto a historically improving and innovative track?

Kathleen Bianculli hits on National Playground Safety Week, and what that can mean for MHC owners. Timely reading!

Zig Ziglar and Tim Connor have each provided their valued insights into motivation, management and inspiration that can support healthier bottom lines. Don’t miss their wisdom.

I’m providing you an article with a snapshot of the Tunica Show in the last 4 years, “by the numbers.” This will include quotable quotes from the MH Industry veteran who knows the show the best! The Louisville and Tunica events are more important to the industry than many realize. So the report plus the video above are helpful to all from coast-to-coast.

mh-rv-hall-fame-that-was-then-this-is-now-c2013-lifestyle-factory-homes-llc-manufactured-home-living-news-

How many in the media or public realize that the above is a mobile home?
We have our work cut out for us, but that is an opportunity in disguise!

Your scribe has also shared an article – loaded with videos! And graphics! – that is focused on the theme of “Growing Manufactured Housing via Compelling Words, Images and Savvy Education.” Want sustainable, positive growth? Then please do read, watch and pass them along to your circle of influence.

let-buyers-see-the-modern-reality-c2013-all-rights-reserved-by-lifestyle-factory-homes-llc-manufactured-home-living-news-com

We will be bringing you a host of videos from Tunica in the weeks ahead. If you haven’t been on MHLivingNews.com lately, here are some published items below – most with videos! – you may have missed. In no particular order – because each has its own powerful points – useful for our industry. Here are the red on white with blue links to the latest in consumer and general public focused information…

http://manufacturedhomelivingnews.com/touring-a-manufactured-home-model-home-village-and-design-center-inside-mh-video/

http://manufacturedhomelivingnews.com/builder-wayne-hopper-compares-modern-manufactured-homes-with-conventional-construction-inside-mh-video/

http://manufacturedhomelivingnews.com/new-homes-for-millennials-boomers-inside-mh-video-terry-decio-skyline-homes/

http://manufacturedhomelivingnews.com/jim-clayton-founder-of-clayton-homes-and-clayton-bank-inside-mh-video-interview/

http://manufacturedhomelivingnews.com/bill-matchneer-retired-federal-official-talks-about-modern-manufactured-homes-inside-mh-exclusive-video-interview/

http://manufacturedhomelivingnews.com/google-plans-massive-modular-expansion-of-headquarters/

http://manufacturedhomelivingnews.com/manufactured-home-handyman-tips-laying-new-kitchen-flooring/

http://manufacturedhomelivingnews.com/an-inside-look-at-manufactured-home-living-a-builders-and-home-owners-viewpoints/

Your team should know these videos, sharing them wisely, so they can sell more homes. They should spread the word via social media, blog posts, with links, etc..

With no further adieu, here are the titles, authors and links for the Featured Articles for April 2015.

Featured Articles and Reports for Vol. 6, No. 7, 2015

Alphabetically by Category

 COMMUNITY MANAGEMENT & FAIR HOUSING (LEGAL)

• Are You Ready for National Playground Safety Week?

by Kathleen M. Bianculli, CIC

kathleen-bianculli-manufactured-housing-american-insurance-alliance-aia-posted--mhpronews-com-50x50-revisedNational Playground Safety Week is April 20 – 24, 2015! This is a great time to review your manufactured home community’s playground area and equipment.

Read more…

 

What if Someone Turns Me Into HUD on a Fair Housing Complaint?

by Nadeen Green, JD

 nadeen-green-mhpronews-comDear Fair Housing Lady, I fully intend to “do it right” and have never be involved in a HUD fair housing investigation. But I was wondering, what is involved if someone does call up HUD and “reports” me. Am I doomed?

Read more…

 

 

GENERAL MANUFACTURED HOUSING INDUSTRY TOPICS

 

• White Paper on Manufactured Housing and Modular Home Zoning Issues

by Lenny Kopowski

Lenny-Kopowski-Louisiana-manufactured-housing_association-posted-mhpronews-com-50x50-Last month made 18 years that I have worked for the Louisiana Manufactured Housing Association. During which my objectives have been varied, but the core mission has been fair zoning for factory built housing.

Read more…

 

• Tunica Manufactured Housing Show Wrap-Up Report

by L. A. “Tony” Kovach

tony- kovachWe spoke Tuesday, 3.31.2015 with Dennis Hill at Show Ways Unlimited, who was still in Tunica doing post-show wrap up details. We asked Dennis for some comments on the 2015 Tunica Manufactured Housing Show.

Read more…

 

Taking a swing at fixing the affordable housing shortage in the Marcellus

by Maureen McMullen

maureen-mcmullen-shale-plays-media=credit-posted-mhpronews-com-50x50pixels-An energy boom can do a lot for a state; oil and gas development can create jobs and bolster the state’s economy. Unfortunately, another common aspect attributed to a booming oil and gas industry is housing shortage, and Pennsylvania has been no exception.

Read more…

 

• The Rules for Housing Innovation – Tying Innovator’s Hands

 by Bob Vahsholtz

bob-vahsholtz-author-dueling-curves-battle-for-housing-posted-industry-voices-guest-blog-mhpronews-com-manufatured-housing-professional-news-50x50-A century of housing innovation! Let us make a list of all the breakthroughs! All the new ideas that have made America the most efficient producer of housing in the world! Here’s the list:

Read more…

 

MARKETING

 

• Growing Manufactured Housing via Compelling Words, Images and Savvy Educational Deeds

 by L. A. “Tony” Kovach

tony- kovachWe’re big believers in the power of telling the truth in compelling ways. Messages on any topic can be shared via a combination of compelling graphics, words, photos and videos.

Read more…

 

PERSONAL REFLECTIONS, MOTIVATION and INSPIRATION

• Yes or No . . . That is the dilemma!

by Tim Connor, CSP

tim-connor-mhmsm-comEver said no and later wished you had said Yes? How about the reverse – said yes and later wished you had said no? Come on – we all do both frequently and some of us more often that we should and why?

Read more…

ZigOn Saying Thank You

by Zig Ziglar

zig-ziglarUS President Theodore Roosevelt has been described as founder of the Bull Moose Party, the man who led his troops up San Juan Hill in the Spanish-American War, a big game hunter, family man, civic servant and a host of other things.

Read more…

latonykovach-louisiville2015-mhpronews-business-building-seminars-By L. A. “Tony” Kovach.

L.A. 'Tony' Kovach, MHM - Publisher, Marketing Director and Industry Consultant
http://www.linkedin.com/in/latonykovach
Manufactured Home Marketing Sales Management trade journal
www.MHMarketingSalesManagement.com aka MHMSM.com aka MHProNews.com
tony@mhmsm.com
863-213-4090
 


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