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Serious September – Manufactured Housing Industry Newsmakers, Reports, Articles and Interviews

September 2nd, 2015 No comments

Serious September 2015. It could just as easily be named, how to Scale Success, or Sliding Sideways September.  Which of the later two it will be depends on how each of us views and responds to events and opportunities.  Before outlining our STRONG Serious September Featured Articles and Interviews line up, let me explain what I mean.

green-key-success-pc-free-digital-photos-net-mhpronews-com- (2)

We could use as an executive summary for the next few paragraphs below that Media Engagement by MH Matters, and that Engaging the Media as Media is Very Useful.

1) We spent the early part of the summer documenting MH potential and opportunities on MHProNews.com.  As with the rest of our content, you can still see and access those articles. June is here and July, linked here.  We could summarize it by saying that with rents rising, site-building through the roof (on costs…) and inventories of ‘affordable homes’ in short supply in many markets, MH has plenty of opportunities for a record rebound.

summer2015state-of-manufactured-housing-industry-report-mhpronews-com-

The reports, linked via the image above, were part of a hot, hot summer on MHProNews.

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Dick Ernst, FinMark USA and Chariman of Financial Services division at MHI.

2) Among the reasons given for not rising higher in new home shipments than we have include financing and new regulations.  More on that shortly, but I’ll refer back to what Dick Ernst, now Chairman of MHI’s Financial Services Committee, has said.  There is no lack of capacity for our MH lenders to finance many more people, who are financially qualified. That could be rephrased as ‘we need to attract better credit customers,’ without ignoring providing the millions – who have no chance for a site built house – the opportunity to buy from us.

3) We have to broaden our industry’s base.  We have to attract the more credit qualified customers, without ignoring the traditional, affordable, entry-level side of our market.  There are retailers and MHCs who are doing it. That means, it can be done in your market too.  How do we do that, you ask?  Many ways, including through media and PR strategies.

Not Letting CFPB and their cheer leaders off the Hook

It is offensive to think MH pros can collectively do only one thing at a time well.  The people I know can walk, chew gum and carry on a cogent conversation all at once. En masse, there are tons we can do, together.

CFPB-ManufacturedHomeLoanRegulations-CFPB-Regulations-commentary-posted-MastheadBlogMHProNews1com-

CFPB-ManufacturedHomeLoanRegulations-CFPB-Regulations-commentary-posted-MastheadBlogMHProNews2com-

Any serious researcher is going to find what you see in the screen capture above. MHProNews, MHLivingNews and our other related media efforts are in-the-mix of the conversation on CFPB regulations and their impact on MH.

So while there absolutely has to be a focus on regulatory relief – that we support in word and deed – we ought not make that the one-and-only-thing needed for industry recovery.  Frankly, the regulatory relief sought is as much or more for those estimated 1.7 million households that have a home under 20k in value, as it is for professionals selling the industry’s pre-owned homes.

So we applaud the efforts of the national and state associations in MH that are working to correct those terrible ‘unintended consequence’ of Dodd-Frank. We’re doing more than cheering. We’re doing the meetings, the legislative outreaches, PLUS providing digital cover for the effort in the form of serious research that makes policy types and Senate staffers say (paraphrasing what a Democratic Senate staffer told me), Hey, that’s a pretty compelling argument.

Dodd-Frank-ManufacturedHomeLoanRegulations-CFPB-Regulations-commentary-posted-MastheadBlogMHProNews-com-

Dodd-Frank-ManufacturedHomeLoanRegulations-CFPB-Regulations-commentary-posted-MastheadBlogMHProNews2com-

Again, any serious researcher on Dodd-Frank and Manufactured Home Loan regulations will come across the MHProNews, MHLivingNews and our OpEd on The Hill Congress blog. We are woven into the conversation, which means that the REAL consumer and industry views are being presented.  Ditto someone checking out Doug Ryan/CFED comments, they are bound to find one or more of our articles that will correct the record, and are in favor of reforms sought by the MH Industry. 

DougRyanCFED-ManufacturedHomeLoanRegulations-CFPB-Regulations-commentary-posted-MastheadBlogMHProNews1com-

DougRyanCFED-ManufacturedHomeLoanRegulations-CFPB-Regulations-commentary-posted-MastheadBlogMHProNews2com-

As further proof of the digital cover, Jan Hollingsworth’s latest column, “Renters’ Nation” has lit up since it was published.

RentersNationTheDarkSideDoddFrankImpactAffordableHousing-MHLivingNews-postedMHProNews-com-

Click here  to see this read hot, new story….

http://manufacturedhomelivingnews.com/renters-nation-the-dark-side-of-dodd-frank-and-its-impact-on-affordable-housing/

87 hours and 38 minutes after the above was published, Webalizer reports there were 42,917 hits on that one article In MH Land, that’s astonishing.

What has to be done now is to scale that outcome

If you want the CFPB and/or the Senate to agree to changes in MH regulations, let me repeat that: what we now have to do is scale that readership result cited above. Please share the link above to Jan’s article with your local editor, and with your  Congressional Rep, your 2 U.S. Senators and the CFPB.

Let’s put this total readership of Jan’s article into perspective.

Just because some publication may have a million readers, that doesn’t mean that each article is read.  Case in point.  We took respected and popular Forbes’ article, shown below.  On July 29th, 2014 on a hot subject, it had 6,701 views.  13 months later, you see that the total views on that article are now up to 7,732.   What that Forbes article has in views in 4 and 2/3rds years, Jan’s latest article accomplished in less than 4 days.

Forbes=credit=taxWaste6.1BillionManHoursComplingFederalTaxCode-JanetNovack-postedMastheadBlog-MHProNews-com

Do you recall when this was big news for a while in the media? Look at the actual views on the article, this screen capture dated 9.2.2015.  7, 732 total views.  It isn’t just how many see it, but who sees it an then acts upon it.  Credit – Forbes.

Side Show September?

Word has it from certain hot spots that some are already grumbling that we gave Frank Rolfe his right to free speech via a featured interview in this month’s issue.  Why would we, as a pro-MH publisher, allow Frank to be quoted as he shared it?

Wouldn’t you want to be quoted accurately?

To be taken seriously as trade media, we have to be fair and balanced, or we risk sliding into irrelevance.  We quoted Doug Ryan accurately too, and I’m not equating the two by any means. When we quote:

  • Jim Clayton, or
  • Nathan Smith, or
  • John Bostick, or
  • Mark Weiss, or
  • Dick Jennison, or whomever,

we ought to quote them accurately. And we do.

Indirectly Related – a Note of Caution

There are already whispers about the wisdom of MHI VP Rick Robinson and MHI Chairman Nathan Smith going to a stage in about a week, when the person providing the stage is said to be in conflict with MHI and the NCC.

Policy

As a matter of policy, we’ve allowed people to critique me and our publication, on our own pages.  So we do this very fairly.  I don’t have to agree or disagree with Frank on his statements regarding MHI and the NCC to protect his right to speak out on those subjects, even though it was not at all on our minds when we asked him the questions. We had no idea what Frank’s replies would be.

If MHI wants to respond, they are welcome to do so.  We are willing to share that response, publicly. Fair and balanced reporting. Period.

We Provide, You Decide.” ©

Something we strive diligently to avoid is any FALSE or errant statement (this, in contrast to an unpopular opinion).  When someone says there are 50,000 or 55,000 MHCs in the U.S. (for example), we’ll either want them to correct that number (that totals is likely more like 45,000, according to informed sources) or we would want to cut the statement entirely.

But that’s not what Frank Rolfe did.  Frank stated his views, and in no way shared a claim that is not grounded in a fact, though those facts can be understood in a variety of ways.

The issues raised by others of late are not new, and are not a side show.  They are on the minds of many in MH; we know, because we’ve heard them often enough.  Its just that this was the first time someone wanted to say so, on the record.

“We Provide, You Decide.” ©

Listening and Taking Correction Well

We had a nice message recently that praised our reporting and commentary work, but then included two typos that needed to be corrected (only 2? ;-).  The writer explained, he didn’t want the corrections to be taken the wrong way.  My rapid response was to make the corrections, and thank him.

An MHI staff officer also sent us a correction on a typo recently. Same outcome as the above.  We want to get the facts right.  We thanked the party.

We published the early comments on Jan’s article, one was that ‘it was long.’ We worked that perspective into the article, linked below.  My response?  I thanked the person for the comment.  That said, the challenge with what we face is in MH as an industry is that we’ve let too much stuff build up over the years, and now we need more than 800 words to dig ourselves out.  The fact that there are so many hits on Jan’s article so fast strongly suggests the content is ‘just right.’

You Can’t Please Everyone, All the Time…

Nor should that be our goal.  If everything was perfect in MHVille, then maybe we’d only need 300 to 400 word columns that all say, ‘everything’s great!’

The reality is there is work to do. Plenty of it. Grab a tool, and let’s get to it.  Failure to address the issues that nag us costs new MH sales.

Record Setting!

MHProNews had 5 days in August that topped 100,000 hits.  Again, in an industry our size, that’s amazing.  On On August 21st, Webalizer reported the daily count was 180,959 hits.  Our readers don’t have to like every article, for there to be value.

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MH Professionals, enthusiasts, educators, media, government officials and investors are among the key groups reflected in software and stats. You and thousands of others have made us the runaway #1 place for MH Industry News Tips and Views Pros Can Use. ©

I explained to an industry leader recently that we publish bad news on the Daily Business News; we do so in part, because it happens; but also because when someone gets (for example) arrested for swindling down payments from a buyer, publishing that acts as a cautionary tale.  Good practices are often rewarded with success, while bad ones are discovered and punished.

When there is a controversy, we ought not ignore it, unless paying attention only fuels something that needs the oxygen removed.

In the matter of MHI/NCC and Frank Rolfe, MHI has to consider why they wanted him on stage, and then they need to consider what might happen if they fail to heed the cautionary note above about the upcoming non-association event.

My bet?  If Nathan Smith and Rick Robinson go to that fast approaching private event of an allegedly disgruntled member as planned, the day will eventually come when they wished they had opted not to do so.  That’s my two cents, they can take it or leave it.

But there should be no doubt that we want what’s good for the organization and good for the industry!  We prove that day by day, showcasing the good, and periodically reminding people there are issues to address that need mending.  You’re reading because you know what’s published here matters and has influence.

Intro for our Featured Articles, Reports and Interviews for September…

As we reported above, we had an August that set records.  When you see the incredible line up we have for our Featured Articles for September, perhaps you’ll agree that this month could set new records with readers like you.

  • We have 2 New Cup of Coffee with…interviews. Chris Parish and Dan Rinzema are featured in their own interviews, which many will find inspirational, useful and insightful.
  • These “Cuppa” interviews will be quite different than the interview with Frank Rolfe, who took some very tough questions put to him, and he responded in what will no doubt be seen by many in wave making ways.  We have no direct connection to Frank, so when I commend him for taking the tough questions we gave him head-on and in a timely fashion, that’s sincerely meant.  Others should think to consider that practice.
  • We have a video interview with Matt Webb, in what ought to be a must-view for anyone interested in improving their management and bottom lines, especially in the MH Community sector, but frankly useful beyond that realm too.
  • We have 4 columns by 5 respected attorneys; you’ll see their important topics that can protect your business, below.
  • We have 2 unique reports on how the new Appraisal Rule roll out is going, with our related MH Industry Survey results coming out soon.
  • There is New York Housing Association’s upcoming regional trade show and educational event.
  • Researching Manufactured Housing Industry Personalities, Organization’s and Topics.
  • A look at the hot early response to Renters’ Nation, the Dark Side of Dodd-Frank’s Impact on MH.
  • Ken Haynes Jr. sounds off on a recent media report.
  • AIA celebrates their 15th anniversary, kudos to them and check out their press release.
  • There are 2 inspirational/motivational articles.
  • Certainly not least for anyone who wants to close more sales, there are videos and an article on reputation management.

With no further adieu, let’s jump into this month’s new Featured Articles, Interviews and Reports.

Featured Articles and Reports for Vol. 6, No. 12, 2015

Alphabetically by Category

 

COMMUNITY MANAGEMENT & FAIR HOUSING (LEGAL)

 

• How To Keep Peace and Harmony In Our MH Communities (at a low cost) 


Robert-Coldren-JD by Rob Coldren, Esq and Dan Rudderow, Esq.

The rule breaking tenant can be handled in many ways. Options include:

Read more…

 

• Water, Water, How Much Is That Water?
by Bill Dahlin, JD

bill-dahlin-hkc-law-california-posted-manufactured-housing-pro-news-com-50x50-
Any Californian who has picked up a newspaper, listened to the news, or not been a bonafide Rip Van Wrinkle, is aware that California is in the midst of a significant drought.

Read more…

 

FINANCING

 

• The Appraisal Rule – Six Weeks Report Card

By Lance Hull
LanceHull21stMortgageCorporationPostedMHProNews-com-55x55.jpgOn July 18th, 2015, the Higher-Priced Mortgage Loans (HPML) Appraisal Rule went into effect for our industry.

 

Read more…

 

• Answers to Questions About the New Appraisal Rule

by Darren Krolewski
darren-krolewski-vp-mhvillage-posted-manufactured-home-professional-news-mhpronews-com-55x55The following were answers provided to questions posed by MHProNews.com to DataComp about the new Appraisal rule implementation.

 

Read more…

 

• S. 682 Offers Possible Relief for Consumers Stranded by CFPB

by Bill Matchneer, JD
bill-matchneer-hud-manufactured-housing-division-cfpb-mhpronews-com-50x50Recent history has shown that the regulations designed to…

 

Read more…

GENERAL MANUFACTURED HOUSING INDUSTRY TOPICS

 

• 65th Annual Convention, Trade Show and Expo – New York Housing Association – Oct 8-12th, 2015 

by Nancy Geer

nancy-geer-new-york-housing-posted-manufactured-home-professional-news-mhpronews-com-50x50-We hope you are well. I have attached the event brochure for you reference. Please see the PDF that is attached.

Read more…

 

• I Can’t Be the Only One.

by Ken Haynes Jr
ken-haynes-jr-new-mexico-manufactured-housing-association-past-president-manufactured-housing-living-news-com55x55It literally drives me temporarily insane when I read or hear manufactured housing referred to by the media, by any other nomenclature than manufactured housing, or manufactured home.

 

Read more…

 

• AIA – Manufactured Housing Specialty Insurance Agents Alliance Celebrates its 15th Anniversary

by Kurt Kelley, JD

kurt-kelly-american-insurance-agency-aia 50x50Bellingham, WA August 25, 2015.

Read more…

 

• Renters’ Nation – Dark Side of Dodd-Frank, its Impact on Affordable Housing – what 38 hours and 25 minutes reveal 

by L. A. “Tony” Kovach


tony- kovachWe’ll let John Caron – whom we interviewed for this episode of 
Inside MH – tell you about his significant history in manufactured housing, MH Communities and in real estate investing in his own words.

Read more…

 

• Controversial Media Reports – The Guardian & KVUE – On-The-Record Interview with Frank Rolfe of Mobile Home University, MobileHomeParkStore, RV Horizons 

by L. A. “Tony” Kovach

tony- kovachOne of the most controversial figures in the MHC world today is Frank Rolfe.

Read more…

 

• Do People Research Manufactured Home Personalities, Companies and MH Industry Subjects? Yes! 

 by L. A. “Tony” Kovach

tony- kovachDo people research companies and people on MHLivingNews.com and MHProNews.com?

Read more…

 

• A Cup of Coffee with…Chris Parrish

a-cup-mhmsm-com1) Who, What and Where: (Your name and your formal title at Parrish Manor).

Read more…

 

• A Cup of Coffee with…Dan Rinzema


a-cup-mhmsm-com1) 
Who, What and Where: (Your name and your formal title at MHVillage/DataComp)

Dan Rinzema, President and CEO, Datacomp Appraisal Systems, Inc. and MHVillage, Inc..

Read more…

 

MARKETING

 

• You Like Me, You Really Do Like Me!

by Wayne Coakley
WayneCoakleyGrenadeMarketingGroupReputationMarketing-ManufacturedHousing-55x62 headshot_MHProNews-com-As you know, nowadays people search online before they buy just about anything.

 

Read more…

 

Matt Weaver, Campbell Caron Properties on IREM, Management, More! Inside MH Road Show Video 

 by Soheyla Kovach

s-k“Failure is Not an Option.”

 

Read more…

 

PERSONAL REFLECTIONS, MOTIVATION and INSPIRATION

 

• Living with Wisdom – 3 Tips for Today

by Tim Connor, CSP

tim-connor-mhmsm-comWisdom – the blending of – information, knowledge, experience, judgment, truth, reality, maturity – to achieve dreams, goals, life purpose, inner peace and happiness…

 

Read more…

 

• ZigOn Work

by Zig Ziglar

zig-ziglarOne of my favorite quips about work is this: Someone asked a worker how long he had been working for his company and he smilingly responded, “Ever since they threatened to fire me.”

Read more…

la-tony-kovach-latonykovach-com-

 

By L. A. ‘Tony’ Kovach.

Association Takeover?

July 9th, 2014 No comments

You know the maxim. To be forewarned is to be forearmed. Thanks to reader tips, at times we've played a communications and/or other role in heading off certain developing issues. The following is shared with a caveat emptor in mind.

We must first tee up this topic with a disclaimer, and then dive in.

Journalists ideally want at least two sources to help confirm the accuracy of a story.  At times, that second source isn't possible.  In those cases, other 'tests' ought to apply before certain accounts are published.  

Let's acknowledge up front that this account has only one direct source.  We didn't seek this topic or timing out, it was brought to MHProNews.

That said, for reasons you'll see, we think the allegations that follow have the ring of credibility, and thus ought to be shared with the stated disclaimers in mind.

We Provide, You Decide ©.

Association Leaders, Please Circle Up

1) Background. Roughly two years ago, we know that a pair of gents began to plan a "take-over" of a certain manufactured housing state association. They accomplished their "mission" about a year later.

One of the 'associates' of that pair gave MHProNews a heads up, alleging that said duo have what amounts to a list of other associations they've also targeted for take-over.

Further, it's claimed they have the tacit support of a salaried association leader in said effort. That's significant.

2) Besides targeting the take-over of more MH state associations, among the groups said to be on that list is the NCC division of MHI. If that's accomplished…

…connect the dots.

3) In a sense, this isn't 'new,' because the reason this has the sound of credibility to those who know is because one of the duo is said to have already taken a stab at such a take-over by resorting to the proxy process, thwarted by an appeal to bylaws. A number of industry pros witnessed that event, myself included.

4) State and national association executives and officers ultimately are called to do what their boards instruct. By taking enough seats on a board, of course a take-over can be engineered. That doesn't have to sound conspiratorial, this can be quite legal because it's the democratic process in action at the association level.

5) What's interesting about this allegation is they've internally named certain states and groups as being more "vulnerable" than others for a take-over. A possible method/strategy how this could successfully be executed at the national level was also expressed to MHProNews.

The message to their closest followers is a variation on, 'they' (those in control of a given board) 'aren't delivering results,' or other alleged personal slights, with no substantive wrong-doing being claimed.

6) The irony is that some of the associations theoretically 'threatened' (if that's an apt term…) do have positive results they can point it, here's an example, courtesy of Marc Lifeset, JD.

7) Stating the Obvious can be powerful. Votes matter, so turn-out matters when votes are to be taken. A low turn-out means that those who get their base of support out, win.

One could say more, but that's a sufficient heads up for those involved.

Pivot!

the-grass-isn't-always-greener-on-the-other-side-of-the-fence-image-credit=wikicommons-poster(c)2014)lifestyle-factory-homes-llc-mhpronews-com-

We had a different Masthead planned for today. Sometimes, a Masthead blog post is planned in advance, but circumstances suggest the need to pivot. That's the case today.

Baring some other development, we plan to return here to a fact-based discussion of what it will take for more profitable and robust growth in new manufactured housing sales to occur.

Parting is Such Sweet Sorrow…

Let's close on the "association take-over" subject by saying what various board members and execs already know – and what the alleged take-over artists are counting on – that some are more vulnerable to take-over than others.

What is noteworthy, after checking with a few seasoned veterans before publishing, your scribe put the following to each: how likely or possible is it that more such association take-overs may occur, if a serious effort was made?

The common reply, paraphrased, 'It's doable for the determined." (See 7 above).

The caveat emptor?

caveat-emptor-let-the-buyer-beware-scales-of-justice=wikicommons-poster(c)2014-lifstyle-factory-homes-llc-mhpronews-com-

The irony is the duo allegedly making the promises they hope will result in wooing the votes needed for more association take-overs, said promise-makers supposedly have never themselves delivered on what they claim to be able to do.

The grass isn't always greener on the other side of the fence. ##

(Editor's note: news tips, letters to the editor and OpEds are welcomed at iReportMHNewsTips@mhmsm.com, or verbal news tips can be made by calling 863-213-4090.)

(Image credits, WikiCommons. Posters and content © 2014 by Lifestyle Factory Homes, LLC)

L. A. "Tony" KovachL. A. 'Tony' Kovach ManufacturedHomeLivingNews.com | MHProNews.com | Business and Public Marketing & Ads: B2B | B2C Websites, Contract Marketing & Sales Training, Consulting, Speaking: MHC-MD.com | LATonyKovach.com | Office 863-213-4090 Connect on LinkedIN: http://www.linkedin.com/in/latonykovach 

CFPB, MHI and MH Captive Finance Lending? Like “Screen Doors on a Submarine.”

May 9th, 2014 1 comment

Their headline was a strong tease. Indeed, there were two Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) representatives at the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) Congress and Expo (C&E) event last week in Las Vegas. It was hardly an 'invasion.'

Indeed, we knew the week prior to Congress and Expo that the pair had registered and paid to attend the MHI event.

Your tax dollars at work?

When we asked about the presence of the two CFPB representatives, MHI President Richard 'Dick' Jennison told MHProNews:

We at MHI, along with our leadership team, were definitely aware prior to the event and planned accordingly that two individuals from CFPB from Washington, D.C., registered and paid to attend MHI’s Congress & Expo."

Ready to go a little deeper?

"Unlike MHI’s business meetings, which only MHI members and invited guests are allowed to attend, Congress & Expo is open to everyone.”

cfpb-goverment-agency-logo-posted-on-mhpronews-comWhile this incident might cause angst for some who are 'flying under the radar' or might be on the wrong side of a regulatory line, it has little or no impact on those who are doing business according to the regs.

Screen doors on a Sub

When an MH industry operation involved in finance was asked about a topic we raised last year – ie: how can a mom and pop MHC or retail operation hope to have a compliant captive finance operation – here was that operation's executive's reply.

When we "…with a lot of resources are constantly trying to keep up with Dodd-Frank and other changes. This (selling programs to an independent MHC or retailer trying to comply with DF) seems like selling screen doors for submarines.

Thanks for a morning hoot."

Don't Get Scared, Get the Facts, Plan and Act!

In our two part series – Manufactured Housing and Captive Finance: Can it be done Successfully in today's Environment? with numerous quotes from industry pros, can be found at the link above addressed that issue in depth.

While the views vary widely, there are legal experts that doubt that a modest independent can comply with a captive finance program, given the fact that much better funded community banks and others are leaving lending due to Dodd-Frank and the CFPB's current regulatory regime.

A similar regulatory concern needs to be expressed about those doing so-called "lease option" deals. Recall this popular Industry in Focus report, NCC Discussion on Manufactured Housing, Rent to Own and Lease-Option.

Meet Marie and Alexi

Marie Whittaker is reportedly from the CFPB's Office of Research and Alexei Alexandrov is a CFPB economist who has worked on their appraisal rules.

If one of these had 'enforcement division' or something similar on their business cards, then certainly the alarm bells might well be going off in manufactured housing offices across the country.

But the surface view at present is quite the opposite. One reason we had no initial intent to address this issue is that there seemed to be no cause for alarm.

In fact, this might be good news for the HUD Code manufactured housing industry.

How so? What if they are part of an effort to create a specialized – and much needed – MH unit at the CFPB? So suggests a wise soul who has thoughtfully provided us – and thus you – much needed insights.

MHC operator 'Scared to Death'

Are you a smaller operation doing captive finance or lease-option lending?

You should think about what a strong, growing organization did. Call an industry lender, and work out a program to sell all their notes and them so the lender can "be the lender." Why? 'Because making those loans and holding the paper in the Dodd-Frank era scares me to death.'

So sayeth the MHC operator selling off their loan portfolio.

Don't get me wrong – "Go Lending!"

Don't get me wrong. In a truly free enterprise system, lease-options or seller-financing ought to be doable in some legal/moral form or fashion that doesn't break the bank…

…or the law.

Will the CFPB swing the pendulum back? Will Congress press changes?

Time will tell, but the political winds seem to be changing. What is certain is that some regs MUST change, or millions are being penalized. Just one of many issues is the 'steering' one. Businesses are being forced to shot gun applications, lenders must wade through reams of paper they normally don't look at; and the consumer is harmed, not served.

Associations, CFPB and MH Pros Like You

Larger operators can access financing in a variety of ways – including per the experts we ask – complaint captive financing.

But any operation can team up with a local lender willing to learn, or one of the many industry lenders who are already hip deep in providing compliant lending that can make you money.

In the meantime, rather than quake over the CFPB, we should be working all the channels to make ever-more reasonable financing available. Good associations are critical to meet that need.

As noted above, if CFPB is researching and creating a unit that better understands and deals with our industry, that could be a good thing for manufactured housing in the short term.

no-alarm-masthead-mhpronews-com

So you new or prospective investors who are reading this, please don't be alarmed or sweat it. The many experts we reach out to on issues are routinely happy to tell us which way is up.

Let me take a moment to thank those experts as always for their insights and wisdom, for without them, this commentary and news site would not be the same value that it is to you in their absence.

republican-and-democratic-party-symbols-creditpoliticspa-posted-masthead-blog-mhpronews0comPolicy Failures – Not Politically Correct

Your Masthead scribe doesn't have to be politically correct. While we work with associations, we are not working for any association, so my thoughts are mine not anyone else's.

As we've said many times, there is absolutely value and the need for associations to have strong ties to BOTH major parties, that is sound association practice.

We should all be pleased that there are Democrats, Republicans and Independents all involved in the MH Association world.

That said, here is the politically incorrect part that we can say and associations can't.

Objectively, the CFPB needs to be aware that the political winds in the nation has been shifting.  IMHO, President Obama is watching his foreign policy as well as his domestic agenda unravel. While a largely compliant media covers the Administration’s 6, the current White House resident is using the mechanisms of government to do what he promised.

To fundamentally change America.

The change that has come is for the worst. People of every racial, gender, social or economic group (save perhaps the uber rich, who also want change, knowing the economy is suffering under the current scenario) are worse off today than 5 years go. Public perception is increasingly getting it on such facts, even with an all-too-often administration compliant mainstream media.

Sorry to those who love the current regime, but my parents were thrilled to come to the U.S. precisely to get away from power-hungry Big Brother socialistic governments!

The CFPB is to finance what ObamaCare is to health care and the insurance industry. Both – as they stand today – are harmful.

  • We have something like half-a-million fewer Americans working today than in 2008.  Ouch!
  • Obama appointee, Federal Reserve Chairman Janet Yellen, referencing the Congressional Budget Office's report said recently. “There is more work to do to put fiscal policy on a sustainable course. That progress has been made over the last several years, in bringing down deficits in the short term, but that a combination of demographics, the structure of entitlement programs, and historic trends in health-care costs, we can see that over the long-term deficits will rise to unsustainable levels relative to the economy.” (Editor's note, bold emphasis added).

Can they be fixed? Sure, but only when enough people of good will move in that direction.

The View from the Masthead

Our position on the issues are pretty clear.

  • We believe in America,
  • we believe in manufactured housing,
  • we believe in reasonable regulation
  • but are utterly opposed to the federal over-reach that we have seen for many years now.

That over-reach easily dates back to

  • Bush 2 on some issues (example, NSA – and their growing of the Medicare program in unsustainable ways, more) and to
  • Barack Obama on a range of topics from foreign policy, job killing policies, ObamaCare, CFPB, energy policies (think about the no-brainer on the Keystone Pipeline), and much more.

As we shared in our previous Mastheads, our industry is well poised for the future. We need to align the talent to deal with the regulatory issues, and indeed progress is slowly being made. Consider this news alert from MHI:

“On May 7th, the House Financial Services Committee adopted the Preserving Access to Manufactured Housing Act (H.R. 1779). The measure, which was adopted by voice vote, won't be formally approved by the committee until a recorded vote is tallied. A recorded vote is expected to occur the week of May 19th – the House of Representative is scheduled to recess the week of May 12th.”

It should also be noted that MHI has generated some 5,000 comments to Congress through their new electronic system!

Yes, the progress is steady, albeit we all wish it were faster. More on that another day.

More to Do, but More Opportunities Too

We've been saying for some years now that our industry must get better engaged with our consumer base and select non-profits. There is no point in rehashing facts shared in Manufactured Housing's Metaphoric Magic, or earlier columns on how energizing our own base in micro-targeting style could make manufactured home owners/businesses a political powerhouse.

I know there are some in the communities world who get nervous about such thinking, but there is no reason to be so, as we or other good MHC operators know from experience.  Happy residents and good management are allies, not enemies.

capitol_hill-congress-masthead-mhpronewsThe Winds are Changing

Richard Cordray doesn't call me for my opinion, but if he did, it would go something like this. Pivot while you can. The political winds are changing in the nation and DC.

The clock is winding down on the Democratic hold on the Senate, and if Republicans don't blow it, they'll have both houses of Congress and perhaps even the White House in 2016.

CFPB, HUD, FHFA, et al, should all pivot now. Make yourselves more of the kind of 'partners in progress' with industry professionals and consumers rather than an opposition to it.

We are the Future!

Manufactured and modular housing are the wave of the future. It is utterly needed for all the right reasons. As we continue to step up more, and the regulators and politicos realize how much they need us, we will see a new era born.

When that happens, let's not blow it like we did in the mid-to-late 1990s. Consumers, lenders, professionals, associations –hms_vandal-wikicommons-posted-masthead-blog-mhpronews-com everyone can benefit by having the right policies and good, professional, sustainable practices.

Let's leave the proverbial screen doors off the submarines.

Let's serve the public well, and with enough people of good will pulling together, we can together create the bright future our industry and the home buying public deserve.

We'll likely pivot on topics mid-week, see you back here then! ##

(Image Credits: Politicspa, WikiCommons, Plus1 Properties,)

L. A. "Tony" KovachL. A. 'Tony' Kovach ManufacturedHomeLivingNews.com | MHProNews.com | Business and Public Marketing & Ads: B2B | B2C Websites, Contract Marketing & Sales Training, Consulting, Speaking: MHC-MD.com | LATonyKovach.com | Office 863-213-4090 Connect on LinkedIN: http://www.linkedin.com/in/latonykovach 

Showcasing Good News and Correcting Bad News in Manufactured Housing

April 13th, 2014 No comments

Let's rat-tat-tat rapidly through a series of 8 brief memos (about 120 words average) designed for industry pros like you.

1) If you are reading this on Sunday, try not to miss some of the positive media we can gain from the Cavco/Palm Harbor entry showcased on TV this evening. NBC's "American Dream Builders" is a 'reality' show design competition hosted by Nate Berkus on Sundays at 8 ET and 7 CT.   It should be interesting!

bank-vault-wikicommons-284x177

2) Also, please check out our new Industry in Focus Report, Investors Discover The Walmart of Affordable Housing. It's bound to be a popular read.

chet-murphree-deer-valley-home-builders-masthead-blog-mhpronews

3) The 10 minute version of the exclusive video interview with Deer Valley Homebuilder's Chet Murphree is now live!  This has tremendous applications for not just his operation, but for the factory-built home industry at large as well.

A Cup of Coffee with…Chet Murhpree – has both the long version of the interview above and the original shorter version, along with some great written insights too.

4) As you watch those videos, think about the lessons gleaned from Forbes and the IAB showcased on today's Cutting Edge blog:

Marketing Lessons for Manufactured Housing?

Forbes Reports Online Ad Revenue vs. Broadcast TV

5) Please file this under the heading, “Utterly Predictable!” and the Cub Scout Motto

There is beauty and utility in having the facts – the truth – on your side and then laying it out in an appropriately referenced article.

One is that if a misstatement, misdirection or error-in-fact is said or repeated, all you have to do is show a thinking person the link to the prior article.  Thinking people get it, and for those who don't think…well…

…it's hard to help the closed minded.

The Cub Scout Motto for years has been Be Prepared. As a one time scout, we have been preparing.

A) The Naysayers Club today took an utterly predictable swipe at MHProNews, which we prepared for over a week ago.

B) They also took a few, pardon my saying so, cheap shots at MHI, the NCC and Nathan Smith, among others. We prepared for that mid week and a number of times before. How often they violate their own stated “principlesis simply amazing!

C) They may not know it, but their self-described 'agitating' struggles are all but over. A close read of their own claims and statements shows their routine contradictions. It is only a question of time before more of their sponsors lose the stomach for their antics. 

D) Precisely because they shoot blanks that make noise but which have no power over the informed, is it any surprise if they follow the pattern we've outlined, “Duck, Dodge, Distract, Detract and Defame”?  If they had the facts – or cojones – on their side, wouldn't they just do a public debate, as we offered before?

wizard-of-oz-pay-no-attention-to-man-behind-the-curtain--credit-mgm-posted-masthead-blog-mhpronews

E) When someone uses smoke and mirrors, it's no surprise they have not even hinted at taking up a real debate on industry issues they continue to agitate about, while they offer – what? – real solutions of their own…?

F) Oh, pardon me, there is their, 'please send me a check or give me your charge card,' so they can tell you how evil their self described 'enemies' are, right?  As one of the comments that came in about that this week – this from one-time admirer of his – said,

The fact that he created an enemies list is alarming.” 

Reading of this article explains why we have much to celebrate, but also why it was important to do a series of careful analysis of the Naysayers Club at work.

Because we've been preparing, the good news is we can now spend much less time on their nonsense, and more merely referencing all of the alleged goings-on – as with the links above – whenever it seems prudent to do so.

G) FYI, one of the many interesting takeaways from their latest – using the man's own numbers – is that we have about 75 times their audience. And, Oh!  Was he seriously calling himself Superman?

BUT, how often does one continue to ‘step on Superman’s cape’ before being upended…”

LOL!  You'll love their idea of an olive branch to MHI, which was an invite for MHI to join his group. Seriously, we have the letter. You just can't make this stuff up! 

No wonder they get more green, full-of-themselves and shrill? 

Our sincere hope is and has been that he and his nay-saying buddies will come to their senses, and join the mainstream of good will and industry advancement, as was suggested in this Mandela article.

There is plenty of money to be earned doing things the right way. In the mean time, lets move onto more MH topics and issues!

6) “Trailer Park” Stocks?

success-concept-free-digital-photos-net-posted-mhpronews-com-SmallCap Network has published a report,

Beyond Trailer Trash: Three Trailer Park Stocks You May Want to Move To (ELS, SUI & UMH)

The story begins by saying…

"Trailer park stocks Equity Lifestyle Properties, Inc (ELS), Sun Communities Inc (SUI) and UMH Properties, Inc (UMH) are hardly trailer trash for…"

Oye, vez!  Are you seeing why its necessary for our Industry to turn lemons into lemonade with image building and more balanced reports, like:

Sensationalistic ‘Cold Hard Lessons of Mobile Home U’ New York Times article by Gary Rivlin draws Manufactured Home Industry Ire, Desire and Fire

Folks, the negative mainstream media ink has its silver lining!  But it is also a dark cloud, as Walden University PhD candidate Lisa Tyler outlines in her OpEd linked here.

7) MarketWatch tells us that our friends at SearchCore – parent to MH business building ManufacturedHomes.com – reported a 50% increase in success-concept-free-digital-photos-net-posted-mhpronews-com-revenue over their 3rd quarter for 2013. IMHO and based on what I see, that trend could well continue, stay tuned.

8) To subscribe free in just seconds to the Manufactured Housing Industry's leading twice weekly emailed news update, please go to http://MHProNews.com/subcribe

email-dark-wikicommons-posted-mhpronews-com.

Let's call it a day, and thank you as always for being a regular here.  Please do encourage your team to learn more to earn more by reading the Featured Articles and Reports found throughout the links found on MHProNews.com and on Manufactured Home Living News.

See you in Las Vegas next week? ##

Manufactured Housing’s Fairy Tales vs. Roaring Ahead

March 19th, 2014 5 comments

For all the noise being created from an office in DC and Indy, you'd think the famous 500 series race-cars were roaring; but they're not.

We will park that thought for now, and before looking at a "manufactured housing fairy tale," briefly survey what's truly advancing in our industry, including:

story-reading-kids-wikicommons-credit-masthead-blog-mhpronews.jpgNow, please gather up all the kids and young at heart, because it's story telling time...

Manufactured Housing's Fairy Tales

Thunder! Lightening! Hail and Rain!  All sorts of literary devices are used in story telling, and fairy tales are no exception.

Let's imagine below an upside down, all-hypothetical view "through the looking glass."

Imagine

Danny Ghorbani named MHI's Man of the Yearmanufactured-housing-institute-award-man-of-the-year-masthead-blog-mhpronews-com(1).jpg

Danny was named as the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) 2014 Man of the Year as the crowning achievement for his years of successful negotiations on behalf of the manufactured housing industry. A list of Danny's accomplishment included, but are not limited to:

  • Successfully Lobbying the Senate Banking Committee on GSE reform by sending them a 30 page document that was delivered via FedEx.
  • Dismissing a lobbyist, and single-handedly lobbying the House on GSE reform, and shepherding the final form of the bill personally.
  • Addressing an extraordinary joint session of Congress, where his impassioned plea for manufactured housing was met by a standing ovation, followed by a call for an immediate voice vote that unanimously passed GSE reform, which includes all that his FedEx'd 30 page position paper called on.
  • The Presidential Motorcade raced down Pennsylvania Avenue, so President Obama could immediately sign into law the GSE reform documentdanny-ghorbani-president-obama-credit-wikicommons-masthead-blog-mhpronews-com Congress passed at Danny's prompting. The President took a smartphone selfie with Danny, to commemorate the event and thanked Mr. Ghorbani for the brilliant way he ended DC partisan gridlock.
  • HUD's secretary asked for the president to issue an executive order to change Pam Danner's title from career administrator to a non-career administrator of the HUD Manufactured Housing program, out of profound respect for the emailed missive (err, memorandum…) Danny had issued on the subject.
  • Pam Danner was instructed by the White House to give Mr Ghorbani carte blanche to fully implement every part of the Manufactured Housing Improvement Act (MHIA) of 2000.
  • Pam Danner was also ordered by POTUS to make Danny the honorary head of the Manufactured Housing Consensus Committee (MHCC), to suspend any of the rules and rubber stamp any request Mr. Ghorbani made.
  • All federal agencies were instructed to joyfully receive Mr. Ghorbani on any topic, any time.
  • MHI voted to reconstitute themselves into a strictly 'post-production association,' with every manufacturing member of MHI racing to pay their dues to Danny as the head of the reconstituted 'production association,' which Mr. Ghorbani has been calling for in many of his monthly columns for the past few years.

  • The Library of Congress asked the Journal  for copies of every article that Danny had ever published, to be framed, set in glass cases that were hermetically sealed and protected by armed guards! These were then ordered to be placed side by side with the Declaration of Independence and the U.S. Constitution.
  • Danny ordered the producers of the movie Wayne's World  to re-edit the movie, to make he and George Allen the new stars, and to have everyone in the film fall on their faces as they chanted the words, "We're not worthy! We're not worthy!"

  • George F. Allen, named as Danny's paid press agent, ordered all MH Park owner/operators in America to change their location names toking-george-allen-coba7-community-investor-blog-allen-letter-george-allen2-masthead-blog-mhpronews0com- include the words, "land-lease lifestyle community,"  to become direct-dues paying members of his COBA7 group, and to memorize the fabled "Ah Ha, Oh No" and other formulas he has preached (err…enlightened us with…) for years.
  • MHProNews was ordered to apologize for having 821 times more page views and outrageously more readership daily than Allen's blog has monthly, and was told to place Allen's weekly blog and Danny's periodic emailed missives (errr…memorandum…) to be the only 2 items shown on the MHProNews home page.
  • The NCC's Jenny Hodge begged George Allen to allow them to merge with Allen's International Networking Roundtable and COBA7.
  • Meanwhile the newly reconstituted post-production association witnessed Dick Jennison beseeching 'King for many-a-day' George Allen to become the President, Chancellor, Viceroy and His Excellency of the not-yet-renamed MHI as well as to simultaneously hold the Executive Vice Presidency of the NCC. Allen's first royal decree was to make every session at the next 5 years of the not-yet-renamed-MHI Congress and Expo to include himself, Danny Ghorbani and their buddies.
  • All the future Louisville and Tunica Manufactured Housing Trade Shows were told to make sure that George himself approved how many Community Series Homes were to be displayed, and that no 'bigger boxes for bigger bucks' homes should ever be showcased without his personal OK. Naturally, the shows educational segments were to be managed by George, with Danny's implied imprimatur.
  • Industry lenders were told by President Obama to buy 500 credit score loans, backed by the Federal government, with 5% down, 30 yeardanny-ghorbani's-head-on-superman-cutout-mharr-ceo-manufatured-housing-pronews-masthead-blog-mhpronews terms and guaranteed credit approval, all of which could be waived in cases of hardship or the need for a no-doc deal. This move, Danny assured the nation, will take industry shipments to new highs in the 500,000+ units annually range. When asked about repos that would follow, Danny replied: “Please, don't worry about any of the repos that will come. Surely, the Treasury Department would find the money to cover those losses somehow! After all, we can always borrow the money from China.”  All nodded at the wisdom of these words.
  • In celebration of all that Danny has done for the Industry, the Journal renamed itself The MHARR Journal. The Allen Professional Letter also renamed itself, The Allen About Allen Letter, but we will Talk about Danny Ghorbani too and Send us your Check Letter. And since Mr. Allen likes abbreviations, TAAAbwDGtaSuyCL for short. Readers were instructed to focus on a column called 'Allen Knows Best' or AKB for short. Subscribers to the TAAAbwDGtaSuyCL climbed back over 300 for the first time in over 5 years.
  • Danny and George agreed to tie their right hands behind their respective backs, while using only their left hands to design new logos for the new production and post-production associations. Of course, the pair would use images of themselves, seated on royal thrones, atop the new logos, would name the new groups personally and…

…and then the fairy tale, imagination station, day-dream ended.

Fairy tale or Farce…

  • GSE reform has not passed. We'd love to see it happen! While this past Sunday's announcement was a hopeful step, with plenty of credit to share all around and that MHI was very much involved in; still, experts say that odds are this won't happen in 2014.
  • HR 1779 and S 1828 haven't failed, they are advancing faster than GSE reform and deserve the vocal support of and effort of all pros, which includes George and Danny, if they truly care about selling more homes, protecting communities, retailers and manufacturers.
  • The above might be funny as a make believe story, if it wasn't already such a farce…?'…

…on the serious side, in Manufactured Housing's Pogo, we shared the following quotable quote.

Isn’t it amazing how many thousands of peoples’ lives in this industry have been upended by the unwillingness of so few people to get along?”

When will we learn to deal with the underlying issues?

Your Feedback and Input

It is feedback from pros like you, the tips and insights from the movers and shakers to the mom-and-pops – all of whom provide us commentary that spans the range of opinions – that helps keep us grounded in reality here.

Thanks as always for reading and supporting the cause of manufactured housing industry advancement. That's our mission! That's our agenda! To share the facts, figures, tips, commentary, inspiration and insights that allow you and your team to know and grow.

See you here on the Masthead  blog this weekend and in Tunica next week. It is at shows like Tunica where we all gather to do the business that truly helps us to roar ahead.  ##

(Editor's Note: For those who want a preview of Tony's "Dominate Your Local Market" presentation for Tunica, please click here.)

(Image credits: WikiCommons, MHProNews)

L. A. "Tony" KovachL. A. 'Tony' Kovach
ManufacturedHomeLivingNews.com | MHProNews.com |
Business and Public Marketing & Ads: B2B | B2C
Websites, Contract Marketing & Sales Training, Consulting, Speaking:

MHC-MD.com | LATonyKovach.com | Office 863-213-4090

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

Terrific Tunica and Magnificent March’s Manufactured Madness!

March 2nd, 2014 No comments

Wikipedia reminds us that it wasn't Oliver Cromwell, but William Blacker who said the words "Put your trust in God, my boys, and keep your powder dry!" Well, U.S. coins and currency still read, “In God We Trust.” Others, as the joke goes, are handled as cash and carry. We will plan an update to our popular report MHARR's Mission, "Improve Relations…” in about a week, as a response to some emailed and posted red-herring comments of our analysis linked above.

For now, simply look at all the bullets points and comments by others that those parties who are busy trying to cover their 6's failed to address, while they are trying to shift the focus of the topic completely.

Smoke and distraction, that's the very definition of how you get a "red herring." Remember, we got a range of comments – and invited those others the report was on to comment too – they declined.

Wonder why?

bill-matchneer-hud-manufactured-housing-division-cfpb-mhpronews-com-75x75.jpgIn fact, their distraction and dodge tactics suggests the validity of our report and analysis.

Please see what is bound to be a highly read Industry if Focus Report, A View of Manufactured Housing Finance Issues from Inside the Washington DC Beltway, by Bill Matchneer, JD.

We Provide, You Decide. “

Canadians!

Ever wonder what the many congenial Canadian readers north of the border think about how our dual-national association in the states works in practice?

Canadians are among those growing numbers of international readers who flock here, and what they read helps some decide where and with whom they do business in the United States.

Canadians managed to dodge much of the U.S. housing bubble hullabaloo, good for them! Kudos too to the many ways that factory-built housing is serving their energy boom areas and so much more.

Magnificent March, The Terrific Tunica (2014) Show Looms!

Tunica-2014-Show-Seminars-.jpg

We are looking forward with great anticipation to the 2014 Tunica Show, for a variety of reasons. Some 85 homes will be on display, making Tunica far and away the largest trade show display of factory built homes in all of North America. Tunica also boasts more exhibitors than the recently completed Louisville Show. The $64 dollar question is, will the Louisville Show hold onto the title as the event with the most attendees? Or will the Tunica Show once more reclaim that honor?

The readership here on MHProNews on articles about the rapidly approaching Tunica Show have been RED Hot! Please see Tunica Show Chairman Keith Bennett's complete run down, linked below. We'll be in the Seminar Room, or at booth 13H in the Convention Center hallway, located right by the seminar room entrance.

As you are planning your spring event agenda, don't forget MHI's Magnificent Congress and Expo! We will be attending that event, as we have for years. Please see the article on the latest news on “C&E” linked below.

February was another record HOT month!

Up North, you may not have noticed, but we had another record 'hot' February here. We want to thank you and the thousands of other readers anew who make us the Manufactured and Modular Home Industry's run away #1 trade media! While others have stopped publishing their results, due (some say) to declines in readership, ours continues to accelerate. We think it is a balance of items summed up in the fact that we provide the most factory built housing “Industry News, Tips and Views Pros can Use” found in any single resource on or off line.

mhpronews-logo

2014-site-stat-summary-on-mhpronews-per-webilizer.png

You and others are voting this #1 with your browsers, time and support.

We highlighted in bold the increases in February over January (2014), above. Please notice that the total of daily visits and page views continues to rise. Even though February 2014 is three days shorter than January, there were more total page views, files accessed and hits on MHProNews last month than in January. This continues the dramatic rise we reported on our main site statistics for 2013, also per Webilizer, which are as follows.

In our industry, the newsmakers and movers and shakers, including Congressional, Senate, C-Suite leaders, mom and pop operations, experts, associations and those in between all contribute to this robust online trade journal. We continue to evolve and grow.

Please see the video report, linked below as ongoing examples of what we do that no one else in our industry's trade publishing has done.

Domestic and International Investors & Researchers

These numbers of readers and page views are important because U.S. and international researchers are among those surfing MHProNews.com. There are plenty of reasons for industry pros to get jazzed about the growing interest in manufactured housing by other housing professionals, institutional and individual investors.

It also strongly reflects what Louisville Show Chairman Ron Thomas, Sr. has called the industry's deep hunger for information and knowledge.

So while the bulk of our readers are still U.S. manufactured housing professionals, the other 'audiences' out there are zeroing in on what is happening in our industry. You are tuning in here, they are too. That means opportunities for those who want to expand, exit, etc..

Avoiding Land Mines and Best Practices Professionalism

I'm counting no less than 5 attorneys who have contributed to the March issue! The expert columns are amazing! If you count the Bill Matchneer special report in Industry in Focus, that's at least 6 JD's (doctor of jurisprudence = JD = attorney or lawyer) we have just published, in addition to the many others we have featured over the years.

We have industry leaders like Sam Landy, President and CEO at UMH, sharing their keen insights. Please see his fine article below.

We welcome Dave Stevens, President of the Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA), previously with HUD.  Another 'must read,' for Dave's insights on financing and the potential future for our industry. Sam Landy's and Dave Stevens' articles both showcase the potential for our hopeful future in the manufactured housing industry.  

These gents know why new capital keeps flowing into MH. 

The video interviews with some well known, respected names in our industry are showcased in my contribution this month, and those videos also showcase reasons for a bright future, as seen through the eyes of about 10 respected industry pros!

Zig Ziglar's article, people need to read that one, because it applies to our industry big time!

Our interviews with Jenny Hodge and Brad Lovin are live! So too are great columns from our experts and dependable writers: Brad, Chrissy, Don, Scott and Tim!

Then pre-event information on the Tunica Show and MHI's Congress and Expo round out 18 Featured Articles, which we will share introductions to and hotlinks below.

Your feedback is encouraged.  Letters to the Editor or OpEds are welcome.  Thanks for being a reader here. We hope you Enjoy and benefit from what follows. ##

Featured Articles and Reports for Vol. 5, No. 6, 2014

Alphabetically by Category


COMMUNITY MANAGEMENT & FAIR HOUSING (LEGAL)

 

• BYOD Policy – Does Your Company Need One?

by David Christopher Baker, Esq.

david-baker-hart-king-manufactured-housing-law-mhpronews-com-50x50Laptops, cellphones, iPads, iPods; we’ve all got one. Most of us have more than one. And, we bring them to work. Bringing them to the office is not the problem. It’s what we do with them that can cause problems.

Read more…

 

• Immigration Status and Housing versus Red Flag Policy Requirements; What can Landlords Ask?

by Elizabeth J. Birch, JD

elizabeth-j-birch-manufactured-housing-law-ohio-manufactured-home-pro-news-com-mhpronews-com-50x50-.jpAsking landlords to enforce immigration laws makes about as much sense as requiring grocers to demand a green card before selling a gallon of milk.”

Read more…


• Confessions of a (partially) reformed MHC Lawyer

by Robert Coldren, JD

rob-coldren--esquire-jd-attorney-hart-king-coldren-law-firm-posted-manufactured-home-marketing-sales-management-mhpronews.com-50x50-pxl-

Doesn't it bug you when you don't get a straight answer to a question? It bugs me. I've been handling legal stuff for manufactured home community owners for most of my life (over 30 years), and for the past 6 years have been a community owner myself.

Read more…

 

• You’re in the Crosshairs (Yes, You Are…) – Part One

by Nadeen Green, JD

nadeen-green-50

 

I sometimes wonder how many in the manufactured housing industry are aware not only of the requirements of the fair housing laws, but also that those who advocate for and enforce these laws have this industry in their sights.

Read more…

 

• Promoting Your Community: The “Catch Me” Program

by Chrissy Jackson, ACM

chrissy-jackson-mhpronews-comEmployees respond to praise. They especially respond to praise for the things they do that they think no one sees or appreciates. This program, as outlined on the next several pages, enables that to happen naturally.

Read more…

 

• Manufactured Home Community Project Focus Series, Project #2, The Lakes, Port Huron, Michigan

by Don Westphal

don-westphal-associates-manufactured-home-land-lease-community-planing-mhpronews-com-50x50.jpThis will be the second in a series of articles on manufactured home communities, the first is linked here. For nearly fifty years, our firm has been preparing plans for land development projects of all types, but primarily in the field of residential community design.

Read more…

 

GENERAL MANUFACTURED HOUSING INDUSTRY TOPICS


• The Tunica Manufactured Housing Show: A 17 Year Old Extravaganza…WOW!

by Keith Bennett

Tunica-Manufactured-Housing-Show-201450x50

What can you say about an event that just keeps getting better and better? That is has matured? Well, sure. That it has aged well? Of course.

 

Read more…

 

• A Cup of Coffee with…Jenny Hodge

a-cup-mhmsm-com1) Who, What and Where: (Your name, formal title at the MHI/NCC and where you are based).

Jenny Hodge, Vice President – National Communities Council (NCC), Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI), Arlington, VA.

Read more…

 

• The Manufactured Home and Land Lease Community Advantages

by Sam Landy

sam-landy-ceo-umh-posted-manufactured-housing-professional-news-mhpronews-50x50Regardless of price point, factory-built homes are the cost effective way to create quality housing. Based on factory built housing's indisputable cost advantage, factory built homes should increase market share compared to other forms of housing.

 

Read more…

 

• Momentum Building for 2014 National Congress & Expo for Manufactured and Modular Housing April 29 – May 1, 2014 – Creating Opportunities – Building Success

by MHI Staff

manufactured-housing-institute-logo-posted-mhpronews-com-50x50The momentum and anticipation for the 2014 National Congress and Expo for Manufactured and Modular Housing is growing! You won’t want to miss this year's “Congress & Expo” to be held on April 29 – May 1, 2014 at Caesars Palace in Las Vegas, Nevada.

Read more…

 

• An Interview with Brad Lovin, Executive Director of the North Carolina Manufactured Housing Association

by Matthew Silver

matthew-silver-posted-on-mhpronews-comNorth Carolina consistently ranks fourth in the nation in terms of manufactured home shipments. “The culture here has always been favorable to the industry.

 

Read more…

 

• State of the Industry – Affordability is the Key to Housing Recovery

by David H. Stevens

david-stevens-mortgage-bankers-association-posted-mhpronews-com-50x50Throughout our nation’s history, policymakers and housing industry professionals have negotiated the sensitive balancing act of consumer protection and access to affordable homes, whether rented or owned.

 

Read more…

 

 

MANAGEMENT

• Are you changing with the times?

by Tim Connor

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I just finished reading a great book by Donald Walsch, When Everything Changes, Change Everything. Don’t be misled by the title. He doesn’t mean change a lot of stuff on the outside but that maybe changes are needed on the inside.

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MARKETING

 

• YouTube says 90% of Web will be Video! Manufactured Home Videos with News, Interviews that Move, Infuse and Amuse!

by L. A. 'Tony' Kovach

tony- kovachReelSEO says that Robert Kyncl, YouTube's head of global partnerships, predicted that 90% of the web will be video. Kyncl also predicted that 75% of all new channels will be online in the next 10 years, and there has been 1 trillion – yes trillion – hits on YouTube in 2011 alone.

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• Why are CRM and Branding Important for You?

by Brad Nelms

brad-nelms-manufacturedhomes-com-posted-mhpronews-com-50x50Millions of professionals have little or no knowledge of CRM. While many have heard of the word, 'branding,' they may not be clear on what it means or why good branding and CRM are important for driving profits and enhanced professionalism.

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• 5 Steps to Changing Buyer Perceptions

by Scott Stroud

scott-stroudFactory-built homes = affordable housing. There is no other; it’s only you.

So, you’d think you’d be shouting it from the rooftops and that there would be a line of buyers waiting to get your product, another line of government agencies asking what they can do to help us provide more homes for a housing-poor America… 

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PERSONAL REFLECTIONS, MOTIVATION and INSPIRATION

 

• ZigOn Adding Zeros

by Zig Ziglar

zig-ziglar-50

Ben Feldman is arguably the greatest life insurance sales person of all time. In his career he sold more insurance than some companies do, however, he struggled to get started and had difficulty selling a $5,000 policy.

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SALES


• Four ingredients for sustained sales success

by Tim Connor, CSP

tim-connor-50

Factory built home sales pros, think about this. There are four significant areas when it comes to consistent high sales performance. They begin with these; self-image and self-esteem.

Read more…

 

 

L. A. "Tony" KovachL. A. 'Tony' Kovach
ManufacturedHomeLivingNews.com | MHProNews.com |
Business and Public Marketing & Ads: B2B | B2C
Websites, Contract Marketing & Sales Training, Consulting, Speaking:

MHC-MD.com | LATonyKovach.com | Office 863-213-4090

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

Goalies, Free Throws and Manufactured Housing Advancement.

February 26th, 2014 No comments

February is drawing to a fast close and there is so much to consider! For example, imagine, there has been over a million pages viewed this month already on MHProNews by pros like yourself. That's like reading over 31,250 copies of all the pages in a 32 page trade journal cover to cover!

The hottest topics being read by your peers and industry colleagues include the fast approaching 2014 Tunica Show, the Nathan Smith video interview, the Louisville Show recap videos and the Manufactured Home Sales Pros Guide to the LO Comp Rule in our Industry in Focus Report supplied by Andy Gallagher, Executive Director of the West Virginia Manufactured Housing Association.

We have some exceptional articles coming up for March. Finance, legal, marketing, sales, management, motivational, you name it! We'll have the biggest mix and run the gamut of professional topics.

We will also have new interview videos to showcase with key industry pros for your enjoyment and insight.

Toss into the mix a strong call by a manufactured housing CEO for an industry image campaign, and you've got plenty to chew on when the new issue goes live by Saturday night, March 1st.

The Colonial Heights story is hot and MHI's popular annual Congress and Expo are also rising in readership ranks. Visit the home page to see more.

There's a New Sheriff

cfpb-pseudo-logo-credit-plus1properties-posted-masthead-blog-mhpronews-com-2.jpgWe will be bringing you a news story in our Daily Business News that will answer the question, how aggressive will the CFPB likely be?  Ken Harney at Inman News, writes:

“It’s going to be hardball.”

“Any doubt about that evaporated recently when the agency filed suit in federal district court against a prominent Louisville law firm, Borders & Borders. The CFPB is seeking a return of not only the fees paid to the firm for conducting settlements for consumers referred by affiliates over a five-year period, but also all profits the firm collected through its operation of nine joint ventures with real estate and mortgage partners during that time.”

Ladies and gents, we as an industry have to get it together NOW.

Goalies, Free Throws and Manufactured Housing Advancement.

If you asked me to be a wide receiver, a pitcher, to shoot free throws or play a goalie professionally, I'd have to decline and suggest you look elsewhere. 

By a similar token, Danny Ghorbani's career as president and CEO of the Manufactured Housing Association for Regulatory Reform (MHARR) has been focused on independent HUD Code builders.  To think Danny is an expert in finance or manufactured home communities or other areas outside of his expertise is no cause for shame.

But what can be a shame is if someone who is NOT an expert or knowledgeable about such issues, inserts himself into an arena with little or inadequate understanding. Problems may arise when that happens. Let's look at some examples.

Here's what others say

Besides industry pros, among our readers are federal and state officials. One emailed in a comment, that read in part as follows: “I hate to think how much damage Danny has done to MH’s reputation in DC.”

An executive emailed me to comment about how often said pro hears about “all the b-tching about Danny” by other industry professionals.

As if to underscore the point made by Tim Williams at 21st Mortgage, a state exec previously said that there were times when a congressional rep or staffer would ask, “Who am I supposed to listen to? MHI or MHARR?”

These are just some examples that should showcase that the issue of mixed messages can be serious.

MH Communities and Danny

logo-factory-built-owners-credit-cufbl-manufactured-home-pro-news-..gifIsn't it problematic when Danny turns to Ishbel Dickens and her so-called National Manufactured Home Owners Association (NMHOA) for support? Community owner/operators would know better, because many of them know that Dickens has reportedly called them 'the enemy.'  So why didn't Danny call Jenny Hodge at MHI's National Communities Council (NCC), who would know the score and could advise him to take a different tactic? Or why not call Shiela Dey, who certainly deals with the effects of Dicken's group on a routine basis?

Danny may not be aware that we have a pro-industry home owners association, under the aegis of SACU, the Factory Built Owners of America. Why not turn to them, instead of Dicken's and NMHOA?  

But Danny defends his action of calling on Ishbel for support, so please, show me where Dicken's is providing any notice of change from her positions regarding our industry's MHC business owners?

MH Lending and Danny

Isn't the same true in the highly sensitive realms of finance? Does Danny really think he can jump into that arena, and hold meetings with key DC people, without years of experience and expert knowledge?  

When MHI goes into those finance related meetings with veteran lenders, even those seasoned experts take their legal counsel! 

And don't these and other recent moves by MHARR's CEO all contradict the 'production' and 'post production' model Ghorbani has espoused for years? Or did it finally dawn on Danny that the rest of the industry's producers were not about to join him?

There are industry voices who say that when Danny separated from MHI many years ago, he never got over it. If that's so, does the past taint hisspotlight-wmc-credit-mhpronews-100x100w-bg-.jpg actions? Does it drive them? 

Spotlight for the Cure

One can respectfully disagree with Danny, critique his published missives and still respect MHARR members. 

MHARR members need MHI members to finance their homes, supply their builders and sell their products. MHI members want those MHARR members as customers. MHI and MHARR members work side by side at Tunica or Louisville. The board members of MHARR and MHI have shown they can get along just fine.

As a number of MHARR members know, I make it a point to personally make it clear it is not them or their association that concerns us. We get along just fine with them and with anyone else who wants to get along and who desires to see our industry advance.

MHARR clearly has the right to have whomever it wants as their CEO. As a trade publisher, we are asking the questions, such as, is the man at the helm of MHARR doing you good or harm?

2 Years of Listening…

For a couple of years, after we launched what we now call MHProNews.com, Danny Ghorbani would call many times a month. I listened for hours every month to his philosophy and world view. I took notes extensively, saved the documents he sent me, saved those emails, etc.. We know Danny well.

During that time, Danny provided me with his world view in great detail. He thanked me many times privately – and once or twice, publicly – for showing MHARR news as well as MHI news.

Danny also pushed me to do critical, objective and 'independent' analysis of MH Issues. He told me that was necessary for our industry to advance. Okay, that was good advice.

Once we started to do so, when the analysis did not favor him, what did Danny do? Isn't it obvious that he turned hard? See the document download of his threat of a legal action – found at the end of this article:

http://www.mhpronews.com/home/industry-news/industry-in-focus/4768-mh-industry-trade-publisher-threatened-

Now think about the above for a few moments. If that is how Danny behaves with a person that is friendly to the industry, imagine how he might be with a regulator who may have his or her arms folded?

Then, go back to those comments above from a regulator, or how about this one:

“I too spent years trying to get Danny to cooperate with MHI on issues I assumed were in their mutual interest. This would usually result in a blistering MHARR circular accusing…all manner of illegal acts and MHI of “going along to get along.”  The guy is just impossible.”

Even a friend of Danny's, said that during some MHCC meetings, he would at times be “screaming” at Danny.

Whether Danny cooperates with MHI – or not – or whether Danny accomplishes anything for the industry – or not – we will continue to follow the fruits of his labors as warranted. If Danny does something great, we'd be happy to show case it. But if all he does is gripe and moan about what others do or don't do…

…well, when pointing a finger at someone else, that means there are three pointing right back at you, right?

As a closing point, Danny does not respond to our invites to answer questions or show his list of recent accomplishments. That is true even when a prominent MHARR member refers us to Danny for comments. Does the president of MHARR not have to answer to his own members?

Your comments are welcome, on or off the record. They can be on this topic or others of industry interest.  If you are submitting an OpEd or Letter to the Editor for publication, please make that clear in your subject line, thank you.

Here's to the days when we can learn to get along well enough internally so that we can all pull together better and thus grow our businesses anew. As two heads ups, HUD is said to be ready to appoint a program director and another U.S. Senator has signed onto S 1828.  More in Congress will follow.

Please check out these recent reports, linked below. ##

 

L. A. "Tony" KovachL. A. 'Tony' Kovach
ManufacturedHomeLivingNews.com | MHProNews.com |
Business and Public Marketing & Ads: B2B | B2C
Websites, Contract Marketing & Sales Training, Consulting, Speaking:

MHC-MD.com | LATonyKovach.com | Office 863-213-4090

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