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Life, Liberty, Property – Supreme Court – and Manufactured Housing

June 28th, 2018 No comments

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1776 to 2018 and beyond. The issues of Life, Liberty and Property were as important when Thomas Jefferson drafted the Declaration of Independence as they are today, or will be tomorrow. And it very much matters to our industry, investors, and related professions.

 

When Sam Zell said they discovered that at Equity LifeStyle Properties (ELS) that they had partners they didn’t expect, he was alluding to the forces of government, often driven by voters.

When you boil down what’s happened – and is happening – in our factory crafted home industry, outside forces impact your ability: 

   to invest,

  where you can place a home,

  what the image of our MH products and communities are,

and so on.

Furthermore, forces within our industry can and arguably have gamed or rigged the system in ways that unduly favors the large vs. the small. That in turn can disrupt the economy, politics, and jobs in a variety of ways.

Into this milieu is the not-entirely-surprising announcement of Justice Anthony “Tony” Kennedy’s retirement from the Supreme Court of the United States (SCOTUS). That retirement has arguably just supercharged the upcoming 2018 midterms.

Salena Zito Tweet Wakeup on Recent High Court Rulings, Touts the “Great Revolt,” SCOTUS Kennedy Shakeup

From issues regarding monopoly, to private property rights, and more, manufactured housing is likely to be in front of the high court in the next 24-48 months. So the replacement of retiring Justice Tony Kennedy ought to loom large in MHVille.

But it’s also huge on hot-button issues like abortion. The political left is gearing up for that fight as we write. The right-to-life forces will too.

 

Having witnessed the appointment of Neil Gorsuch to the Supreme Court of the United States (SCOTUS), and watching President Donald J. Trump and Vice President Mike Pence repeat the themes of “promises made, promises kept,” and “we will enforce the law” – like it or not – there are numerous reasons to believe those claims.

That means supporters and detractors alike are going to gear up for the midterms. No hype, but this may become the most consequential midterm elections in our lifetime.

In North Dakota last night, the President of the United States (POTUS) Donald Trump laid out his case for taking Heidi Hiedcamp’s Democratically held seat, and turning it over to a member of the GOP. He and VP Mike Pence will likely repeat this in battleground states from sea to shining sea, between now and Election Day in November. 

 

 

Life, Liberty and Property

Life, Liberty and Property” were the core rights to be protected, in the initial draft of the Declaration. In the revision to the Declaration of Independence, which was signed on July 4,1776, Thomas Jefferson changed “Property” to read “the Pursuit of Happiness.” Both versions are timeless in their meaning. 

A millennial and self-proclaimed socialist – Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez wins in New York –Tuesday over 10-term incumbent Rep. Joe Crowley in New York’s 14th congressional district.  Crowley was the number two House Democrat, a stunning primary upset.

 

MHProNews has been reporting for over a year the growing trend of openly socialist Democrats running for office, and how millennials are closely divided on the topic of free enterprise (“capitalism” is the normal phrase used in public opinion polling) and socialism.

“Political Necrophilia,” Tragedy in SloMo, Southern Economic Political Lessons for Looming U.S. Midterms

A nation divided must learn how to engage the other side on thorny issues without threats of intimidation or violence.  

A nation in need of affordable housing must be engaged by manufactured home professionals in ways that make sense to clear majorities.

These are challenging, but exciting times.

 

The View from MHVille…

It’s gratifying to first hear and later read from industry professionals, “Tony, if MHProNews is writing about it, I want to know about it.” We’ve made several tactical adjustments over the years, and did again last year by moving into a transparent statement that every Daily Business News item is a mix of reporting, analysis, and commentary.

We have an editorial viewpoint, informed and shaped by experiences influenced by professional readers who call, message, and write. We are mindful that voices and policy makers inside and outside of our industry are on our pages daily by the thousands. The CFPB formally cited MHLivingNews as a source. The Congressional record includes a document that first appeared on MHProNews. Popular Value Penguin published an op-ed that includes both of our pro-industry publications.  

What happens in MH trade publishing here matters.

Every day in the evening market report, we do what no one else in the history of the industry’s trade media has ever done. We share headline bullets from CNN, and headline bullets from Fox Business.  We’ve done that for years. That’s fair and balanced.  An example is linked below.

Warren Buffett Strikes Deal with Lee to Manage Berkshire Units, plus MH Market Updates

Those who scan those left-right headlines in our market report every evening get more news in 2 minutes than watching an hour of news at night on TV or your device.  We save time, and yield more insights.  

Those who check the evening market report data each business day are miles ahead of their peers who don’t do the same. Those who read our featured topic for the day get insights on issues that move America, and thus will move the markets, or impact business and investments.

 

The Dow to 30,000?

Barring a catastrophic event, the Dow could hit 29,000 to 30,000 by 2020. Yes, even with all of the trade war talk, that’s a realistic outcome.  You read it here first. Why? Read the evening market report every night for a month, and you’ll see why we believe that’s coming. 

The president draws each of his rally events to a close with a call for unity of the nation. He cites the reasons during his talks why blacks, Hispanics, women, workers, investors, and others should support his efforts. He does counter-punch, but he also puts out olive branches. He is controversial, but just accept it and watch. His opponents claim he is petty and vindictive. Really? Ask Nikki Hailey, Marco Rubio, or Mitt Romney – who opposed him. Yet, he’s called on them, and supported them.

POTUS Trump is arguably among the most accomplished people to ever occupy the White House. He’s lancing numerous festering boils, as my better half might say, using a medical analogy. It will be ugly, until it is over.

Life, Liberty and Property – the Pursuit of Happiness. Can the Republic find healing after what will be a bruising midterm? Let’s close with an excerpt from Psalm 79.

Psalm 79

R/ (9) For the glory of your name, O Lord, deliver us.

 

Remember not against us the iniquities of the past;

may your compassion quickly come to us,

for we are brought very low. R/

 

Help us, O God our Savior,

because of the glory of your name;

Deliver us and pardon our sins

for your name’s sake. R/ ## (News, analysis and commentary.)

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Related Reports:

‘Tip of Iceberg’ – Rick Rand; Marty Lavin, Communities have ‘No Confidence’ in Manufactured Housing Institute, New National Trade Group Announced

 

Only 3 Options – the Elephant in the Room

 

NorthStar and Manufactured Housing Radix

To provide a News Tips and/or Commentary, click this link. Please note if comments are on-or-off the record, thank you.

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Publisher and industry consultant, L. A. “Tony” Kovach.

By L.A. “Tony” Kovach – Masthead commentary, for MHProNews.com.

Tony is the multiple award-winning managing member of LifeStyle Factory Homes, LLC, the parent company to MHProNews, and MHLivingNews.com.

Office 863-213-4090 |Connect on LinkedIn:
http://www.linkedin.com/in/latonykovach

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Click here to sign up in 5 seconds for the manufactured home industry’s leading – and still growing – emailed headline news updates.

 

Facebook, Manufactured Housing, and American Drama

June 12th, 2018 No comments
FacebookFossbyteManufacturedHousingINdustryDailyBusinessNewsMHproNews

What do you see?

Facebook has a neat feature that reminds you of some post from the past. This morning, that Facebook feature reminded me of a post about MHVille that was from two years ago.

 

We’ve begun to use the phrase – “wheat and chaff” – more often to describe the point that people and sources of information must be discerned. Keep the good, toss what’s not useful or is incorrect.

It’s hardly a new thought. Wheat and chaff are an ancient piece of Biblical wisdom.

When we put together the story early this morning about the outcome of the presidential summit, it was the result of hours of input from a variety of sources. It is an example of wheat and chaff in action.

Perhaps 10 (+/-) sources were checked, before we drilled down what we thought was the meaty items for industry pros and investors to know.

Then, we provided the context of what it matters to manufactured housing. “That news through the lens of factory-built housing,” ©; one of our tag lines that describes what MHProNews uniquely does for the manufactured and modular home industry professionals and investors. 

It’s about American drama at its finest. Check out that report, linked below, compare it to anything else that might be used for an MH Industry pro, and please tell us what you think. 

 

Facebook, Wheat and Chaff 

I recall how Triad Financial President Don Glisson, Jr. gave us a backhanded compliment that we treasure. He said he thought we were crazy when we launched what we call today, MHProNews.  The launch was in mid-October 2009, and was near the industry’s lowest point ever in new home shipments.

Now, approaching a decade later, we as an industry are clearly not heading to extinction, as some then believed could happen.

When asked by the Midwest Manufactured Housing Federation (MMHF) to help bring back the Louisville Snow, we jumped in with both feet. The pay was very modest, considering all that had to be done.  But we did it, and the show was a success, the first one in years. 

Tim Williams from Ohio’s association was one of several who praised our work in writing.

TimWilliamsOhioManufacturedHomesAssocExecDirectorRecommendationTonyKovachMHProNewsLouisvilleManufacturedHousingShowPromotion

One of over 1000 endorsements and recommendations, most were given without being requested. We thank each sender for that honor.  

Facebook has wheat and chaff. Pretty much everything and everyone does, starting right here.

We are pro-free enterprise. We cheer all honest and ethical forms of success. We stress honesty, and ethics, because some professions are built on the suffering of others.  From illicit drug pushers, to pimps, pornographers, thieves, racketeering, coyotes, and so on, there are illicit businesses that generate tens of billions annually.  We don’t cheer those at all.  

But if we are fair and objective, even the darkest parts of human nature reveal truths worth learning.

We must learn to separate the wheat from the chaff. 

 

Breaking Up

Count us among those who hope and pray that the Feds break up Facebook, Google, Amazon, and other monopolistic U.S. giants. Think back, if you are old enough, to the breakup of the telecoms. AT&T was charged under antitrust laws. 

Based on Judge Harold Green’s Modified Final Judgement of 1982, AT&T on January 1 1984 became a long-distance company, while seven regional Bell Operating Companies (RBOCs) took control of the nation’s local phone networks,” says the American Enterprise Institute (AEI).

 

Some say that the monopoly over the phone business delayed the development of cell phone technologies by a decade.

It is just one of several reasons why corporate giants must be held in check and/or broken up.

To me, it isn’t just about price, which is an arguably flawed standard that antitrust regulators often use.  How many businesses has Walmart and Amazon wiped out? How many jobs has that cost the nation? Would we have seen the shift to buying so much product from China, had Walmart not become so big?  

They too should be broken up under antitrust law.  As NY Stern Professor Scott Galloway has argued, it is how you bring oxygen back into the marketplace for startups and investors.  That’s were jobs are created, instead of destroyed.

England, we’ve read, has a supposed standard of 25 percent market-share as the threshold for anti-monopoly (anti-trust) action. That might be still be a bit too high. Once a firm hits 20 percent of a given market, there are inevitable impacts on consumers, businesses, innovation, the economy, politics, etc.  

Wheat and chaff. We must learn from whatever is good, and toss out whatever isn’t. The prism of the Ten Commandments – which clearly respects private property – ought to be the standard, timeless measure of behavior. 

What Facebook reminded me of this morning is that it has been about two years since I got a tip from a then-fellow Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) member. That member pointed me to a CSPAN video about Richard Cordray and Senator Joe Donnelly. When I watched it, I got what that other MHI member as telling me.  

MHI had distorted the exchange, saying only what was good for their narrative, while ignoring what was problematic for their stated agenda.  

It seemed deliberately deceptive. It came from MHI VP Lesli Gooch, but our sources then said that MHI President Richard “Dick” Jennison had to okay it.  

It’s was at best a half-truth, designed to mislead members. As a member myself, I was outraged. We can call these things allegations, because that is what the legal guys say it should be termed. But if you look at the CSPAN video we watched, and then look at what MHI then said… 

Logically, if top MHI staff would deceive members about that, what else have or would they attempt to trick their own dues paying members about?  

They had to be held accountable. I called publicly For Jennison’s dismissal along with that of Lesli Gooch. 

It wasn’t the first or the last news tip. 

Please, we’d rather get a news tip 4 times, than not at all. Don’t presume we have something. We know the generalities, but not always the specifics. Help us, help you help the industry get the most accurate reports by sending association emails, documents, and your own insights. Our default is that we treat comments as off the record, unless you and we specifically agree to make it on the record. 

One step at a time, we’ve seen how MHI has weaponized reports. It was tricky, because no one else in the industry had directly named names and cited examples of what was happening, and who was authorizing it, the way we did. 

That incident from 2 years ago led to a series of events and reports that has arguably contributed to what has brought us to the point we are in reporting in MHVille today.  

Today, we can look back and see MHI, and their debatably Berkshire Hathaway puppet masters as they are. We give them a routine opportunities to comment before, during or after a Daily Business News story. We accurately quote from their own documents. We’ve offered to discuss or debate publicly via video, so all the industry can see. 

They duck, dodge, detract, distract, and defame in response, don’t they? Doesn’t all of that speak volumes?  If the truth was on their side, why don’t they just clear the air? 

It’s been about 1 1/3 years since they have directly responded publicly. We suspended our industry famous Cup of Coffee series for a time, because it was too politically charged for many. We plan to bring that feature back, because more of the industry’s members are beginning to see — that what we’ve been reporting sadly makes sense. 

It’s time to use antitrust laws to break up Berkshire Hathaway, not just Clayton Homes and their lending, retail, and others unit arms. 

MHI must be investigated and/or perhaps sued.  They’ve arguably misrepresented to the industry what they are and what they do. 

MHI award winner Marty Lavin is sadly correct. MHI works only for the interests of “the big boys.” They work for the smaller companies only if their interests align with that of the big boys.

‘Tip of Iceberg’ – Rick Rand; Marty Lavin, Communities have ‘No Confidence’ in Manufactured Housing Institute, New National Trade Group Announced

The rationale and evidence seems to be that smaller companies are there as a meal for the big boys that want to gobble up smaller firms for a cheap price.

The smaller firms are there to also help pay for what the big boys want. Paraphrasing what another member said, ‘the big companies figured out how to use MHI to help get the smaller companies to pay for what the big companies want.’

Manipulation is often an ugly thing. 

No one wants to believe that they were conned.  It’s not fun to have to report about such problems, but it must be done, for the sake of all those who are debatably being victimized.

George Allen Blasts MHI, NCC Ignoring Own, Spencer Roane, SECO, COBA7, Tom Lackey Controversies

These are serious allegations. but there’s also serious evidence. There are several federal investigations already underway, because where there is smoke, there is often fire.

 

For manufactured housing industry professional and investors to thrive and achieve their full potential, the industry must recognize reality.

Then, each company must decide how best to deal with reality. It’s an American drama that you and hundreds of thousands of others are caught up in, like it or not. More on that drama and its solutions in the days ahead. ## (News, analysis and commentary.)

(Third party images, and content are provided under fair use guidelines.)

Related Reports:

Greener, Stylish Manufactured Homes – Hidden Facts in the Washington Post Manufactured Housing Narrative

NorthStar and Manufactured Housing Radix

To provide a News Tips and/or Commentary, click this link. Please note if comments are on-or-off the record, thank you.

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Publisher and industry consultant, L. A. “Tony” Kovach.

By L.A. “Tony” Kovach – Masthead commentary, for MHProNews.com.

Tony is the multiple award-winning managing member of LifeStyle Factory Homes, LLC, the parent company to MHProNews, and MHLivingNews.com.

Office 863-213-4090 |Connect on LinkedIn:
http://www.linkedin.com/in/latonykovach

Sign Up Today!EmailedMHProNewsHeadlineNewsDailyBusinessNews

Click here to sign up in 5 seconds for the manufactured home industry’s leading – and still growing – emailed headline news updates.

S 2155, Manufactured Housing,“Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief, and Consumer Protection Act” Back Story

May 22nd, 2018 No comments

S2155ManufacturedHousingEconomicGrowthRegulatoryReliefConsumerProtectionActBackStoryMastheadMHProNews

S. 2155 is poised to pass the House today.  It’s styled “Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief, and Consumer Protection Act.”

 

Should the bill pass – and Skopos Labs/GovTrack say there is a 56 percent chance of enactment – then the following is what you can expect from the Arlington, VA based national manufactured housing association and their surrogates.

Based upon her promises, this bill would not have been signed by Hillary Clinton. So MHI – which put two pro-Clinton speakers on their Chicago stage days before the 2016 election – has no room to crow. Rather, they should be grateful to those in the industry who promoted a president who would sign such a measure.

There is a 100 percent chance of celebration and back slapping by the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI).  I don’t blame them, it’s natural.

But there’s a back story.  MHI don’t want the focus to be on the back story.

Indeed, as a matter of record, repeal of the onerous MLO rule is one MHProNews has supported for years.

In spite of what some consumer groups claim, the MLO repeal provision only levels the playing field for manufactured home retailers and communities. It allows them to do what real estate agents can already do. We supported both legs of the original bill, so logically, we supported each one too.

S2155ManufactuerdHousingINdustryMastheadAnalysisMHProNews

Whatever happens on this bill, there is going to be overhang from progressives, unless the case – especially for manufactured housing – is properly made as to why this bill was positive for consumers and industry alike.

 

“Tony, What’s the Beef?”

We’ve had some pros – skimmers, not readers – who’ve asked why we don’t support the bill. We have supported the measure, and did for years.

Our “beef” – as one writer put it – has been that MHI spiked this MLO-only deal years ago.

If the MLO rule is OK now, why wasn’t it OK then?

Mark my words.  MHI wanted to do this, because they and their puppet masters were desperate to be able to claim a victory on anything of substance.

Mark my words. MHI and their puppet masters are feeling the heat.

MSM = Mainstream Media

Once more, the mainstream media (MSM) has numerous reports and commentaries coming out just before the House vote.  They are slamming the measure, slamming Clayton Homes, and Berkshire Hathaway’s MHI association mouthpiece.

Part of the point is that even when they ‘succeed:’

  • the manufactured housing industry must remember this could have been done years ago, as the Daily Business News exclusively reported.
  • Clayton and their Berkshire lending brands were winning either way. They benefited if S 2155 and/or Preserving Access passed or not. This is a nuanced but critical point to understand, long after 2155 is forgotten. An MHI insider first told me about that insight, and then another did. It was MHI types that explained that the big companies benefit regardless if MHI backed bills pass, or not.  Burn that one into your mind, it frankly took me time to get it. But once that sank in, it became an eye-popping insight.

 

Look at this MHI Pattern

LesliGoochforCongressManufacturedHousingInstituteMHISVPGovtAffairsRelationsManufacturedHousingIndustryCommentaryMastheadDailyBuisnessNewsMHProNews

Lesli Gooch, blast from her past…

MHI’s EVP Lesli Gooch proudly told the Washington Post they did not weigh in on the removal of Pam Danner.

Recall, that MHI was on the wrong side of the DOE energy rule, until pressure from this publication, MHARR, the SBA and others made them switch course.

We could go on and on like the above. But the bottom line is simple, and tragic.

Independents who are paying dues to the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) are arguably paying to feed the hand that bites and fails them.

There are reasons why state associations and others have dropped their MHI membership.

 

Pulling the Head Out…

head-in-sand-wikicommons-dilbert=credit-posted-masthead-mhmsm-com-

Some don’t want to hear what they might consider to be ‘bad’ or ‘negative’ news. Reality is.  Hiding a head in the sand has never solved a problem. Image Credit WikiCommons, Dilbert.

There are some MHI loyalists who think we’re just sore because MHI gave us the boot. Hardly, that’s reversed.  MHI gave us the boot because they didn’t know how to deal with all the myriad of revelations we were publishing about their ‘alleged’ favoritism, failures, and flaws.

All of that has cost the industry, IMHO, billions of dollars a year in new home sales.  That in turn has cost manufactured home owners, billions of dollars in higher resale values.

It is time for more in the industry to dig deeply.

It is time to pull the head out of the sand, and look.

As a closing thought, please note that not everything about MHI, not everything about Berkshire Hathaway draws our concerns. We strive to be objective.

The best example is from Monday.  Please check that article out.  We give credit where it is due, period. We are evidence, reason, and fact-based. We are pro-industry.  We’re not against big-business.  We are against big business that behaves in monopolistic, crony capitalists, or otherwise behave in unethical ways.

See the first take on MHARR’s related report, linked above.  Enough said for today. ## (News, analysis and commentary.)

(Third party images, and content are provided under fair use guidelines.)

UPDATE 6:27 PM ET.  As expected the bill has passed. Let’s see how the prediction above plays out.  Details of the passage are found at the link below.

Related Reports:

Greener, Stylish Manufactured Homes – Hidden Facts in the Washington Post Manufactured Housing Narrative

To provide a News Tips and/or Commentary, click this link. Please note if comments are on-or-off the record, thank you.

 

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Publisher and industry consultant, L. A. “Tony” Kovach.

By L.A. “Tony” Kovach – Masthead commentary, for MHProNews.com.

Tony is the multiple award-winning managing member of LifeStyle Factory Homes, LLC, the parent company to MHProNews, and MHLivingNews.com.

Office 863-213-4090 |Connect on LinkedIn:
http://www.linkedin.com/in/latonykovach

Sign Up Today!EmailedMHProNewsHeadlineNewsDailyBusinessNews

Click here to sign up in 5 seconds for the manufactured home industry’s leading – and still growing – emailed headline news updates.

 

4 F’s and True Believers

March 17th, 2018 No comments

4FsandTrueBelieversManufacturedHousingIndustryDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

Not necessarily in this order of importance, but count us as true believers in:

 

  • Manufactured Homes,
  • America as a Constitutional Republic with free enterprise,
  • and in the four F’s – Faith, Family, Flag, and Fortune (career).

Count me as a pragmatist too. In both trade publishing and in our professional services to the industry, we go where the evidence leads us.

To rephrase, it’s practical to have faith – among other reasons – because its supported by the evidence, and establishes a moral compass outside of one’s immediate self perceived interest. Faith is good.

We could run through the other four Fs in the same manner.  They are each proven, practical, principled, and profitable when properly understood and applied.

So we believe in Manufactured Housing (MH) within that broader context of the Four F’s.

 

The Industry’s Best Homes Ever?

Many believe that the quality, durability, appeal and value of federally regulated HUD Code manufactured homes has never been better.

Without arguing that claim either way, consider this question.  If these are the industry’s best homes ever, then why isn’t Manufactured Housing doing as well in new home shipments and MH sales as say 20, 30 or 40 years ago?

ManufacturedHomeShipmentTrendsPercentageNewHomeStartsSkylineChampionPowerPointMastheadBlogDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

Don’t try and take an easy answer, like say ‘financing.’ Back in the 1980s – for example – sales were higher, and interest rates were sky high at the start of the decade. The product wasn’t as good then as today’s, ditto the lending, and yet they sold more homes.  Why?

TrailerHouseMobileHomeManufacturedHomeFactoryBuiltHousingEvolution101MHProNews-MHLivingNews

Editorially and based upon fact checks, we disagree with some of the conclusions and claims cited by the Urban Institute’s recent look at the question Manufactured homes could ease the affordable housing crisis. So why are so few being made?”

“Follow the Money” – Controversial Urban Institute Report on Manufactured Housing

 

But we commend the Urban Institute for raising the discussion topic! They have asked the right question.  It is one that everyone in the industry that wants to grow in a sustainable fashion must seek to resolve.

Some are happy, because the industry is back near 100,000 shipments annually. Certainly, that’s good news, given where the industry’s shipment levels where in 2009.

2008to2017HUDCodeManufacturedHomeProductionTotalsMHARRManufacturedHousingAssocReglatoryReformDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

But that’s not good enough. Not by a long shot.  When the nation needs some 8.3 million housing units a year, manufactured homes ought to be doing several hundred thousand new home sales a year.

LawrenceYunNARShort8.3MillionHousingUnitsRisingRentsHousingPricesCuredOnlyByMoreBuilding

Today’s Masthead won’t editorially suggest the causes or the solutions, per se.

What we will do is ask you to take a good look at the proverbial elephant in the room.

Watch the Warren Buffett video above.

While one may agree or disagree with Mr. Buffett’s politics or business practices, there is no denying his business success.  So those success tips the Berkshire Hathaway chairman describes ought to provide lessons for everyone in the industry, regardless of the size of their enterprise.

Then, with those quotes and tips from Buffett in mind, begin to dive into the resources linked below.

Acknowledging that a challenge exists – and understanding the issues involved – are the first steps in all problem solving.

It is a point that Mr. Buffett and business-man-turned President, Donald J. Trump both happen to agree upon.

Namely, that you should know all that you can about an issue that impacts your career or business.  Sound advice, from different ends of an emerging national debate.

Research, reading, viewing as needed, and robust discussion are how those answers are going to be discovered.

Speaking as true believers in the 4Fs and manufactured housing, it’s crazy not to get to the root issues that keep the industry from achieving its previous new home sales levels.

Given today’s widely acknowledged manufactured home quality, and the huge need for affordable housing, it’s an issue that is begging for answers.  ## (Industry commentary and analysis.)

Related:

Housing, Jobs, Poverty, Opportunity – Kerner Commission Remix, HUD and Manufactured Homes

Two Great Laws Already on the Books NOW,  Can Unlock Billion$ Annually for Manufactured Housing Industry Businesse$, Investor$

Progressive “Nation” Reports on Monopolies Cites Buffett, Clayton, Others – MH Industry Impact?

Kevin Clayton Interview-Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway, Clayton Homes CEO

It’s “Fair Warning,” not “I Told You So”

(Third party images, cites are provided under fair use guidelines.)

ThereAreOnly2WaysToLearnOwnOthersExperiencesLATonyKovachManufacturedHousingIndustryMHProNews-575x235By L. A. “Tony” Kovach,
award-winning consulting, publisher, web, video, recruiting, sales training, business development service provider.

MHLivingNews.com | MHProNews.com | Office 863-213-4090 |

Connect on LinkedIn:
http://www.linkedin.com/in/latonykovach

 

That’s Debatable – Affordable Housing, Manufactured Homes, Trillion$ Await

December 16th, 2017 No comments

It was 15 years ago, but back then, MHI was correct to quote Harvard’s Eric Belsky.

MultipleReasonsExpectManufacturedHousingDoBetterThanSiteBuiltHousingEricBelskyEecDirJointCenterHousingStudiesHarvardUnivDailyBusinessNewsMHProNewsWhat happened to Belsky’s prediction, that kept manufactured housing from reaching its promised potential?

That’s debatable.

ThatsDebatableAffordableHousingManufacturedHomesTrillionsAwaitMastheadIndustryCommentaryMHProNews

 

We outlined in a cross-referenced, fact-based analysis and commentary part of what allegedly happened to the then-and-now potential for federally regulated, HUD Code manufactured homes to meet America’s affordable housing needs in the “Smoking Gun” report linked below.

4 Sentence Executive Summary of “Smoking Gun

Warren Buffett’s customary reading and research led Berkshire-Hathaway to buy up Clayton Homes, Vanderbilt, 21st, Oakwood, and other manufactured home connected businesses.  Using MHI as a chosen vehicle, they took a series of steps that arguably benefited their operations, often at the expense of numerous others.

Want evidence and reasoning to support that claim?

—> See the 21st Mortgage Corporation document -part of the “Smoking Gun” report and analysis – linked above.

Warren Buffett’s Famous “Perverse” Quote, Applied to Manufactured Housing

In “Perverse,” 3 Buffett Quotes are applied to manufactured housing.  ExecSummary? ‘He doesn’t think the industry will change, so he’ll win?’

WarrenBuffettQuotesPeverseEasyThingsDifficultChainsHabitLearnFromHistoryPeopleDontLearnFromHistoryManufacturedHousingMHI-MHProNews

“Perverse”–Warren Buffett-Dodd-Frank, CFPB, Manufactured Housing, Loans, Independent Businesses Fact Check$

We looked recently at what Buffett and his successor fear.  ExecSummary? A breakup.

Who Will Replace Warren Buffett at Berkshire Hathaway? Expert Insights, Video & Manufactured Home Industry Outlook

We’ve also spotlighted the growing signals from the Trump Administration that the 45th president is eyeing anti-trust – read anti-monopoly – actions.

Based on prior reports on what Buffett fears – a Berkshire Hathaway breakup – is there any reason to think that Buffet’s empire – including Clayton – isn’t in the president’s cross-hairs?

President Raises the M-Word, “Monopoly,” Plus Manufactured Housing Industry Market Update$

The time to discover and debate replacing the Manufactured Housing Institute, should be engaged in now.

A third-party report on that subject is teed up from the Daily Business News item, linked below.

Study Recommending New Manufactured Housing Association for Independent Retailers, Communities, Lenders, Others Released

You can find the Manufactured Housing Association for Regulatory Reform’s (MHARR) detailed report on the need for a post-production association, linked below.

http://mhpronews.com/industry-news/mharr-news/mharr-releases-study-recommending-independent-collective-representation-for-post-production-sector

MH Debates, Discussions and…

At Tunica in 2017, we invited the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) to join the discussion – debate, if you will – the issue of media engagement, and their (in)effectiveness in that realm.  MHI’s PR person ducked out.

Frank Rolfe said yes.

That led to the following.

Frank Rolfe: Pressured into Silence? Manufactured Housing Industry, and Journalism

At Deadwood in 2017, Rick Robinson had the perfect opportunity to prove in front of dozens of industry professionals why what they’ve done is so brilliant, and why MHARR, this writer, MHProNews and other critics of theirs are all so wrong.

MHISrVPRickRobinsonManufacturedHousingInstituteLogoGenCounselMHProNews657

Robinson ducked in front of dozens.

I’m inviting – challenging MHI – to a public debate/discussion at Louisville, to be video recorded.  Video would allow the entire industry – and all other interested parties – to see and learn from the discussion/debate.

WithoutDebateWithoutCritismNoAdminNoCoutnryCansucceedNoRepublicCanSurviveJohnFKennedyManufacturedHousingIndustryMastheadCommentaryMHProNews

MHI’s own actions convinced me of several things.

Line those actions up – using Marty Lavin’s logic – with the money.  Doesn’t it lead you to the same places that Dems and Republicans alike have discovered about Berkshire Hathaway/Clayton Homes/VMF/21st hold over MHI, and the industry?

FollowTheMoneyPayMoreAttentionToWhatPeopleDoThanWhatTheySayMartyLavin6MillionYachtManufacturedHousingIndustryDailyBusinessNew

Marty Lavin Lashes the Manufactured Housing Institute’s (MHI) Latest Initiative

Debate is useful.

Scholars, and thinkers debate.

Business and investment professionals in their board rooms debate.

Politicians (sort of) debate.

Let’s be blunt. MHI to date has lacked the confidence to debate their true performance. They’ve had other opportunities. Do they really want the industry to starkly see what has been taking place in recent years? Would it embarrass them, and their string pullers? “We Provide, You Decide.” ©

Why not a great debate on the trillions in opportunities that could flow to factory-home builders, much of it to HUD Code builders?

NAR’s Yun – No Quick Fixes Spell$ Manufactured Housing Opportunitie$

The Yun Report demonstrates what we’ve said for years. There are trillions in opportunities in MH, but only for those willing to step out of the chains of the past into the bright opportunities of tomorrow.

Manufactured Housing Monday Morning Sales Meeting: Finance & Industry Facts, Figures, Sales Tip$ Improving Best Practice$

That will be a focus on the next, popular – Monday Morning Sales Meeting.

NewManufacturedHousing1trillion9PercentNew1percentExistingHomeSales2016CreditManufacturedHousingIndustryMHProNews

In some 600 words, you now have a link-laced snapshot of what third-parties and this writer believes is the truth is about the manufactured housing industry potential.  What successful pros are doing to grow at significantly faster rate than Clayton and Cavco.

WarrenBuffettQuotesPeverseEasyThingsDifficultChainsHabitLearnFromHistoryPeopleDontLearnFromHistoryManufacturedHousingMHI-MHProNews

You also now know what Mr. Buffett is counting on – inaction – that keeps most of the industry from enjoying the fruits of those opportunities.

Trends in MH Communities, Impacting Producers; Looming Crash?

Failure to act, will have consequences for still more independent producers, retailers and communities, as the link above demonstrates.

MHI?  Louisville Debate date/time, please?

How about the afternoon before the event begins? “We Provide, You Decide.” ## (Editorial commentary, analysis, opinion, news, fact-checks, manufactured housing.)

LATonyKovachPresentingStateConvDeadwoodSDKenCorbinCommentManufacturedHousingIndustryEventDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

L. A. “Tony” Kovach presenting to a packed house.

L. A. “Tony” Kovach 
MHLivingNews.com
 MHProNews.com |
Office 863-213-4090 |


Whether you think you can or whether you think you can’t, you’re right. “
– Henry Ford

 

The Three Letters that Unlocks Manufactured Housing’s Answers

September 4th, 2017 No comments

Whoever you are.

Whatever you do.

Whatever brought you here.

Whatever your political, economic, religious, ethnic, or other perspectives happen to be.

Three letters turn a key that unlocks the answers for manufactured housing investors and professionals.

Conceal, Reveal and ‘the Deal…’

Understanding the facts and opportunities unlocked by those three letters could lead to robust new HUD Code manufactured home sales growth.

That growth would positively impact retailers, communities, producers, lenders, suppliers, and all others who serve the public in manufactured housing.  What are those three letters?

WhyManufacturedHousingIndustryCommentaryMastheadBlogResearchReportsDataMHProNews

Why? Credits, MHProNews/Pixabay.

Why?

When there are millions of Americans who need affordable housing, why did manufactured housing finish 2016 with only some “81,169” new HUD Code manufactured homes shipped?

HUD2017WorstCaseHousingNeeds2017ReportCongressGrowingDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

HUD’s 2017 Worst Case Housing report points to nearly as many housing units needed today as the total number of pre-HUD Code mobile homes and post HUD Code manufactured homes in existence today. Those 8.3 million don’t count the millions more renting, 85 percent of whom want to own and could qualify for a residential style manufactured home.

When real estate agents can’t keep enough affordable housing in stock, why did manufactured housing grow at only 15% 2016 compared to 2015?

The Manufactured Housing Industry (MHI) has touted the fact that the manufactured housing industry for many years was about 21 percent of all new single family housing starts. Hmmm, okay. So, Why does MHI accept being at only some 9 percent of single family housing starts today?

Why did Richard A “Dick” Jennison – President and CEO of the MHI – say in reply to a softball question in the video below that “I don’t think that we [manufactured housing industry] should grow too fast,’ so that it gets…out of control” – out of who’s control? Who or which operation(s) benefit from slow industry growth?

When there are MILLIONS of affordable housing units needed, Why should the industry settle for less than 100,000 new homes, and modest growth?

  • Why not half-a-million new manufactured homes annually, or more?
  • Why should RVs – an optional purchase – outsell manufactured homes by some 5 to 1, when homes are a necessity?
  • Why did Jennison get his contract extended by MHI after he made this straight-faced statement on the video above? What would happen to an National Association of Realtors (NAR) or National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) president if they would have said something similar?
RichardCordrayCFPB-ManufacturedHousingRegulationsCSPANstill-InsideMHvideoPostedMHProNews-com-

These are quotes or close paraphrases of statements made by Richard Cordray, CFPB’s director. They would have been helpful for MHI to make their case to get Preserving Access passed. MHProNews created the graphic above to support the effort. Why didn’t MHI ever use it? Why didn’t MHI make a similar graphic or similar arguments? Why don’t they want to debate their own effectiveness? Could it be that they don’t want to have to answer serious, reasonable questions? Why not debate their wisdom and effectiveness?

If they really want to see the Preserving Access to Manufactured Housing Act passed, Why hasn’t Lesli Gooch, Ph.D. – MHI SVP for Government Affairs & Chief Lobbyist – or anyone at MHI gotten permission to use the graphic above, or create a properly attributed one of their own like it?

Why not use Richard Cordray’s own talking points to advance the Preserving Access bill they claim to want enacted into law? (See quotes/graphic above.)

Why won’t MHI release their bylaws, which an MHI board member told MHProNews is required by law?

Why won’t MHI discuss the alleged conflict of interest for the largest lenders in the industry setting the agenda that most favors their own company?

If they are confident, why won’t MHI agree to publicly debate via video their performance and success, on their own claimed agenda?

DebateMastheadblodTonyKovachMHProNews

Why won’t MHI debate their effectiveness?  MHProNews.com/Pixabay.

When Lesli Gooch and the MHI leadership know that Keith Ellison plans to lead a charge against Preserving Access – as her own written statement below makes clear – why didn’t MHI denounce racism?  Why isn’t MHI being pro-active instead of reactive?  Why not -when as prior chairman, Nathan Smith said in a video statement – that MHI must make being proactive part of their standard?

CampaignForAccountabiltyClaytonHomesLogoBerkshireHathawayVanderbiltMortgageRacismSteeringPredatoryLendingDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews720x403-575x322

Each of those lodging allegations discussion on this page are reported in the Daily Business News post, click image above.

Smith’s point is interesting. Especially given MHI’s history of being reactive, per prior chair Smith, why did Gooch and MHI’s leadership fail to condemn racism? Especially Why – given the fact that Ellison, and 3 other Democratic Congressional leaders – have signed onto a letter to the CFPB and the Department of Justice that alleges racism on the part of MHI’s dominant companies (Berkshire Hathaway units Clayton Homes, Vanderbilt Mortgage and Finance, 21st Mortgage Corp)?  Why don’t see that opponents of MHI’s bill may again use racism as a charge against them, as they did in the 2015 congressional session?

USRepMaxineWaterEmanuelCleaverKeithEllisonMikeCapuanoMastheadDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

These Democratic lawmakers have raised the issue of racism with respect to the companies that dominate MHI. MHProNews is the first in the Industry to notify industry readers that the Center for Accountability, about two weeks ago, put out a press release that they are pursuing this racism, steering and predactory lending issue. MHProNews asked MHI’s leadership about this, asking them to reject racism. After several days, they have not yet done so. Now, MHI’s SVP Lesli Gooch admits that Rep. Ellison is opposing the MHI Preserving Access bill. Will any thinking person be surprised if Ellison, the CfA or others accuse MHI’s leadership of racism?  Why would MHI hesitate a second to reject racism?

Why didn’t Lesli Gooch’s letter to State Association Executives (shown below), include a reference to the various groups – including, but not limited to, the three below – which are targeting their bill, with allegations of racism, and more?

  • Consumer Financial Protection Bureau CFPB
  • Democratic lawmakers
  • Center for Accountability (CfA)

The first three hot links were added by MHProNews and where made bold, so that those who want to dig deeper can quickly access more information.  but all of the text below is by Gooch to state association executives…who, by the way, are NOT “MHI State Executive Directors.”

LesliGoochManufacturedHousingInstituteCongressMHIlogoSrVPGovtAffairsSeniorLobbyistRepKeithEllisonMHProNewscollage

Is there much doubt that many state associations are dominated by the same forces that dominate MHI? That said, state associations do not belong to MHI. They are not technically MHI state association executives, as Gooch opened her letter. Some executives resent that kind of address of MHI to them, as independent organizations.

From: Lesli Gooch [mailto:LGooch@mfghome.org] Sent: Thursday, August 31, 2017 11:48 AM
To: Lesli Gooch <LGooch@mfghome.org>
Cc: Rick Robinson <rrobinson@mfghome.org>
Subject: Federal Legislative Update

Hi MHI State Executive Directors,

I wanted to update you about some upcoming action in the House of Representatives on the two issues that we focused on during the MHI legislative fly-in. In June, MHI members went to the Hill to: (1) support H.R. 1699, the Preserving Access to Manufactured Housing Act and (2) Stop HUD’s expansion of the regulation of manufactured housing beyond, and often contradictory to, the statute – on issues like garages, carports, frost free foundation requirements, and on-site completion of construction. Attached is our “asks” document from the fly-in.

As soon as next week, we expect both of these issues to come up on the House floor when the Fiscal Year 2018 appropriations package (H.R. 3354 – The Make America Secure and Prosperous Appropriations Act) is considered. We will know more about timing next Tuesday – while it was scheduled to come up next week we anticipate the Hurricane will likely push the timing back.

First, the language of the Preserving Access to Manufactured Housing Act is included in the underlying appropriations text that is being brought to the House floor. Rep. Ellison (D-MN) has filed an amendment with the Rules Committee to strike this language from the bill. We are advocating with the Rules Committee to decline his request to offer the amendment during House debate on the bill – as they did when he tried to strike our language out of Chairman Hensarling’s Financial CHOICE Act (H.R. 10).

Second, Rep. Barr has filed an amendment with the Rules Committee regarding HUD’s expansion of regulations on garages/carports; frost-free foundations; and on-site completion of construction. Here is the link to the amendment: http://amendments-rules.house.gov/amendments/barr824171353405340.pdf. These issues were raised in a bipartisan letter to HUD Secretary Ben Carson (see attached). We are working to ensure the House Rules Committee agrees to allow the amendment to be offered during House debate on the bill.

We will keep you posted as things move forward. We plan to send out a grassroots call to action when we have a better sense of timing.

Thanks,

Lesli

Lesli Gooch, Ph.D.

Senior Vice President for Government Affairs & Chief Lobbyist

1655 Fort Myer Drive, Suite 200, Arlington, VA 22209

whats-wrong-is-that-we-dont-ask-whats-right-g-k-chesterton-posted-inspiration-blog-mhpronews-com-

What’s Wrong is that We Don’t Ask What’s Right

In the video collage below, is a brief clip of ROC USA president Paul Bradley explaining “cohesion,” a point that MHI Financial Services Committee chairman Dick Ernst speaks about cohesion in the same video, noting its importance.

Bradley’s point is akin to Marty Lavin’s argument that notes the manufactured housing industry’s “other image campaign.”  Lavin’s meaning is that the negative news that is so common from the mainstream media – which Lavin has explained must be dealt with.  When the national association for years has not refuted the negatives that manufactured housing industry is often hit with, why would savvy home buyers invest?

TheManufacturedHousingInsittuteLogoManufacturedHomeIndustryOtherImageCampaignMartyLavinMHILogoMHProNews

To see what some other industry professionals have said about the pending MHI image campaign, click the image above.

Yet as Frank Rolfe and others have blasted MHI for their poor communications in defending the industry, or even promoting the industry.

FrankRolfeNegativeArticlesOnIndustryNoCommentbyManufacturedHousingInstituteMHIRVHorizonsMobleHomeUniversityPostedDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

Why should MHI and their dominant companies be in charge of a planned industry image campaign? Why – or how could they possibly lead – when MHI’s own president has advocated publicly – more than once – that growth should be slow?  See Jennison’s statement in the roughly 20 second video above.

When Clayton and Cavco’s own published numbers indicate that they are growing at a pace somewhat slower than the industry at large, why should they call the shots for everyone else?

IndustryMarketShareClaytonCavco63ManufacturedHousingIndustryDataResearchMarketStockReportsDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews613

Using MHI’s numbers, Cavco stated the above. Per MHI, the industry grew 15% 2016 over 2015. What that means is that Clayton and Cavco are growing at a somewhat slower pace in sales than the industry at large. Based upon those facts, why should those two companies dictate the course of MHI’s future, or their planned image campaign?

Why doesn’t MHI address the concerns, such as the allegation by a long-time member that – “the big companies [that dominate MHI] have figured out how to get the smaller and mid-sized companies [members of MHI] to pay for what they [the big companies] want” – why won’t MHI answer that or other legitimate questions and concerns?

We could go on and on with questions like the ones above.

MonopolyGameHasbroMastheadBlogManufacturedHousingIndustryMHProNews

For a story on Google and other monopoly concerns, and their impact on manufactured housing, click here or the image above. Photo by MHProNews, of the classic Monopoly game.  The longtime Parker Bros game product is now produced by Hasbro.

But let’s draw to a close today by saying, that after years of failures and disconnects, Why should MHI be trusted by anyone not a part of their inner circle?

MHARR is exploring expanding their membership.

Other company leaders have touched-based with MHProNews, saying they are exploring doing the

  • networking meetings,
  • trade shows,
  • promotion,
  • education,
  • post-production lobbying,
  • instead of MHI.

There are estimates that for less money than MHI spends, more could be done – and done more effectively – to Protect, Educate and Promote (PEP) the industry.

PEP-P.E.P.-Protect-Educate-Promote-mhassociationmantra-postedmastheadblog-MHProNews

A leading MH state association exec’s mantra we love to share.

MHLivingNews and MHProNews are prepared to support intelligent efforts to supplant what MHI does.

Why not let the big companies keep their big boys club?

Why not let there be an association that works on behalf of everyone else?

Feedback on this is welcome.  “We Provide, You Decide.” © ##

(Image credits are as shown above, and when provided by third parties, are shared under fair use guidelines.)

LATonyKovachMHProNewsMHLivingNews5StateConventionMastheadBlogMHProNews

Click on the graphic above to learn more about the rapidly approaching 5 State event.

L. A. “Tony” Kovach is the managing member of  LifeStyle Factory Homes, LLC.  The Masthead blog represents that editorial perspective, and may or may not represent the views of sponsors or others.

MHProNews is open to a diversity of professional viewpoints.  We routinely seek, get, and publish feedback from industry professionals that represents a range of diverse views and backgrounds.

 

MHI is once more invited to publicly debate via video, available both live and for later playback, their track record on protecting and promoting the manufactured home industry.

Are too many Manufactured Housing Professionals “Cooked in a Squat?”

June 17th, 2017 No comments

Zig Ziglar popularized the expression of ‘don’t get cooked in a squat.’ The illustrations below explains the point.

The expression means, don’t limit yourself – or let others limit you – as a result of restrictive thoughts, actions or inactions.

DontGetCookedInASquatZigZiglarManufacturedHousingIndustryCommentaryDont LetOthersSelfLimitYouByActionInactionThinkingMHProNews

There are arguably few industries that are better poised for potentially explosive growth than manufactured housing. America, indeed much of the world, needs affordable quality homes. Factory home-building provides that option.

Our industry once achieved new home shipment numbers some can’t even imagine today.

Given that almost two decades have elapsed since manufactured housing’s 1998 high of 372,000+ homes, many professionals from those heady days have:

  • gone into other work,
  • retired, or
  • have moved on to their eternal reward.
manufacturedhousingannualshipmentstoothachecredits-manufacturedhousingindustrymastheadcommentary-mhpronews

2016 facts above. Even though many may see the potential to hit 300,000 or 400,000 or even 500,000 annual shipments in a sustainable fashion, that will only occur when systemic changes are made by serious manufactured home players on the local and regional levels.

We have a new generation – including owners and management – many of whom have never personally experienced high volume before.  Many of those need coaching by those who have seen it, done it and are still doing it.

Hooked on MH’s Version of Cocaine?

There are some who think that only bad lending can get manufactured home sales volume back up.

Some think the industry is addicted to bad lending, and that only unsustainable loans can lead the industry to higher volume.

While it is true that loose credit was a driver for tens or hundreds of thousands of MH sales back in the roar of the 1990s – until the MH Industry’s financing collapse by the early 2000s – its false to believe that only “loose” lending can return the industry to previous greatness.

BadLoansSettingHouseOnFireMastheadblogMHProNews

Bad, unsustainable loans is analogous to setting the industry’s house on fire. We can prosper with sustainable, good lending.

Just look at the shipment graphic above again.  The industry did over 200,000 new home shipments for years after the HUD Code was enacted, with lenders and others that all made a profit.  It was in the 1980s that yours truly entered manufactured home sales, and so this writer can tell you first hand that those like us did our part to help millions become home owners, most of them happy with their choice.

GoodSustainableManufacturedHomeLendingLeadsMutualVictoriesMastheadIndustryCommentaryManufacturedHomeProfessionalNewsMHProNewsIndustry professionals largely realize that life is about mutual victories.

  • The customer/resident must win,
  • the seller must benefit,
  • service providers must profit,
  • and when there are loans, then that lending must be sustainable, and profitable.

Fears of a repeat of the late 1990s and early 2000s are part of the excuse that the Government Sponsored Enterprises (GSEs) – rightly or wrongly – use to not move into chattel loans, or that’s causing them to do so tepidly.

The GSEs management that’s taken the time with our industry believe in our HUD Code home product! But they want to make sure that their loans perform.

When loans perform and make buying a home realistic, everyone in the mix can in theory, win.  This is where HUD Secretary, Dr. Ben Carson’s point about home ownership leading to wealth building makes sense.

Association Whispers to MHProNews

As important as national associations can be, state associations are important too.  State associations are in their own way closer to the front line where congressmen and senators live in their districts/state.

State and community association members are the ones who vote for and/or support a legislator.

Yes, national associations can engage any congressional representative or senator too. But at the end of the day, someone back in that elected official’s district ought to be in the mix.

So, we find the insights from the states to be as interesting and relevant as those from a national association. Each one needs the other.

MHEC-logo-ManufacturedHousingExecutivesCouncil-postedMHProNews600x204-com-

State and Community Executives deserve more attention. While national associations meet with D.C. based regulators, policy advocates, Congressional staff or members, it’s the state and community associations and their members who are the “boots on the ground” that are key to making it happen. MHEC Logo, their property, shown here under fair use guidelines.

What the state association execs often say off the radar isn’t what you’d hear at an MHI meeting being said out loud. While some at the state level are happy, a number have several unaddressed concerns.

Facts Matter

CautionSlippingManufacturedHousnigIndustryNewsDailyBuisnessNewsWe’ve identified that there are states that are still flat, rising very modestly or are shrinking in sales.

We’ve identified the fact that MH rental housing – destined for manufactured home REITs or other land-lease communities that want a faster fill than sales previously gave them – has a narrow window.  Depending on who you listen to, the heavy-orders from communities may last roughly 5 years (+/-). After that, they will tend to drop off (there will always be a level of replacement sales).

So, filling spaces in higher vacancy properties has driven part of the shipment rise.

There are a limited number of independent retailers, as a result of the wipe-out between 1998 and 2011.

Factories are telling us they could be doing more, opening more plants, etc., but the lack of enough solid independent retailers are part of their challenge.

Factories also tell us that they compete for labor too, much as the stick builders do.

Then there’s the biggest challenge of all, misunderstandings about our industry’s products and services.

Tied in with those misunderstandings are zoning, regulatory or other issues.  Enforcing the “enhanced preemption” of the Manufactured Housing Improvement Act of 2000 would be huge for almost every market where a HUD Code home could fit.

Getting our industry’s lending ‘closer’ to site built lending is desirable, but realistically, numerous locations have proven they can grow with precisely the lending we have today.

 

 

Part of the lending solution must include proper appraisals. We should note that one client firm in MH finance is telling us they’re growing at about double the rate of the industry at large.  They are doing that with good credit customers.

Other clients are growing at double – or more – the rate of the industry at large.  They’re doing so selling upscale homes.  Entry level housing is great and necessary, but HUDs could always “own” that market.  They are also often the hardest buyers to finance.

EnergyStarManufacturedHomesHalfPriceResidentialStyleHUDCodeManufacturedHomesMHLivingNews

See the story and videos, click the image above or the link here.

So, one key to growth are those well-qualified, site-built buyers, who want to own for lower costs.  We in MHVille could own much of the housing market under $200,000.

ExistingHomeSalesNewNAHBSaldes-ManufacturedHomeSales-statistics2016-SlideFromJune7TuesdaysWithTonyPowerPoint-MHProNews-com

NAR stats reveal that over 90% of their buyers get approved. NAHB, NAR and MH Industry statistics on new manufactured home sales compared to existing home resales and new home starts. Still from a slide from Tuesdays With Tony webinar.

We’ve worked with and talked to enough real estate agents who get it, site builders who get it, and industry pros who learn it and do it to know that these are not pipe dreams.  They are occurring today, in the real world.

Amazon, Google, Exporters, and Factory Built Homes

http://www.mhmarketingsalesmanagement.com/blogs/daily-business-news/googles-going-modular-housing/

Apple, Amazon, Google, Facebook, are just some examples of giant firms that could swoop in and change HUD Code manufactured housing overnight. The same is true of giant hedge funds, some of which are already invested in MH.  Learn more, click here.

There are those looking at:

that wonder…

What would happen if those cash-rich, tech giants entered the factory-built housing field directly and/or via acquisitions?

Don’t forget, Berkshire-Hathaway came into MHVille one day, and 14 years later, they’re number one in several categories.

There are overseas, Canadian and domestic investors who have stepped into the MHC sphere, and we’ve watched MHC property values go up through supply and demand.

Then there are overseas producers of factory-built housing that are testing the American market. We hear from them directly. Don’t forget, there are HUD Code homes that have been built in Mexico!  Believe the following.

We can see low-cost mods being shipped to the states someday.  They may come from China, Vietnam, the Philippines, Japan, Korea, etc. Container housing is just the tip of the spear.

Finally, our brethren in the modular housing field are busy, busy in smart ways.  Look at what they’re doing, linked here – ICYMI.

So, there’s a huge need for affordable homes, that HUD Code manufactured housing can uniquely fill.  MOD builders want slices from that pie too.

WorkingTogetherMBIICCManufacutredModularHomeIndustryDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

There are also a variety of pressures, road-blocks and threats, including that of self-limiting thinking.

Those tech giants – like our president – think big.  Those deep-pocket investors, think big. Those overseas producers of factory built housing, they see the U.S. market and are salivating.

WakeUpCallCoffeeAlarmClockMastheadblogManufacturedHousingIndustryCommentaryAnalysisMHProNews

This is Your Wake-Up Call

Yes, the industry is recovering, thankfully so.

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

2016 finished over 81,100 new HUD Code homes shipped.  That’s a steady recovery. But some agree with the Masthead that MH ought to be doing half-a-million a year in annual shipments. Why are we struggling along with sub-100,000 shipments?

While we celebrate that recovery – which so many, including ourselves and others we’ve worked alongside and in conjunction with – ought not kid ourselves either.  Manufactured housing is still stuck in low gear. The threats – and opportunities – outlined above are only some of the ones that we hear and know about.

Third-party reports and professionals – from outside of our industry – often tell me or publish articles that reflect how surprised they are that our industry doesn’t do better.

how-much-you-don't-know-mickey-mantle=wikicommons-masthead-blog-mhpronews-com-

So, when Frank Rolfe says that part of what holds our industry back, is often the industry itself, that’s a fact.

When MHARR tells us they think the industry could be doing hundreds of thousands of new home shipments a year, that’s a fact.

Numerous industry pros – MHI, MHARR, non-aligned – have said, over the years on our pages – similarly in their own words.

We in MHVille, we in HUD Code manufactured housing, ought to be roaring, not snoring.

AvoidYourComfortZoneItsProbablyOutdatedAnywayDonaldTrump71Birthday-768x384

Image credit, Pinterest.

It All Starts Up Stairs

The first battle is one of the mind.  It is understanding what our manufactured home industry’s true potential is, and not limit our own thinking. The Donald Trump quotes, or the Mickey Mantle quote, just fit.

TrillionDollarHousingMarketManufacturedHomesAreSolutionMastheadblogMHProNews

We should not personally allow ourselves to be Cooked in a Squat.

Donald-Trump-Quotes-Business-Mike-Schiemer-Frugal-Entrepreneur-MediaThinkingBig-postedMastheadBlogMHProNews-

No one would accuse President Donald Trump of being a bland color. Image credit, Frugal Entrepeneur.

Once we get to seeing that hundreds of thousands of new HUD Code home shipments a year are possible – sustainably, ethically – that translates into millions of dollars more in sales in a market(s) like yours.

Collectively it’s tens of billions a year that could be achieved in short order, and in a trillion-dollar housing market, it is no exaggeration to say that our MH Industry could – on paper – evolve from being a boutique business now to becoming a trillion dollar a year industry.

Autos do so, why not us in MH?

The opportunities here in the U.S. are just that big.

But they will never take place with backward, or self-limiting, thinking.

This brief outline broadly lays out the SWOT reality in objective terms.

Growth starts in your mind, at your location(s), in your part of the industry.

Everything else are details and commentary.

We’ll dig into those details more in the days ahead. ##

(Image credits are as shown above, and when provided by third parties, are shown under fair use guidelines.)

latonykovach-caricature-postedmastheadblog-mhpronews

L. A. ‘Tony’ Kovach caricature.

By L. A. ‘Tony’ Kovach.

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