The Three Letters that Unlocks Manufactured Housing’s Answers

September 4th, 2017 Leave a comment Go to 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?

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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?

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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?
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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?

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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?

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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?

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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.”

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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

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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?

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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.

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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?

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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.

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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.

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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.

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