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Are They Among the Best Advocates for Manufactured Housing and Manufactured Home Living?

April 20th, 2018 No comments

AreTheyTheBestAdvocateManufacturedHousingAndManufacturedHomeLivingDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

It should be patently obvious that among the best possible sources for information on manufactured home living are consumers.

 

Unfortunately, as the Daily Business News has documented for years, the news stories found in much of the mainstream media routinely sees a negative tilt to manufactured housing, often incorrectly called trailer houses,” “trailer parks,” and “mobile homes” by reporters.  Sadly, not many in media use the correct term of manufactured home, when the factory built home as constructed after June 15, 1976 to the HUD Code standards.

The affordable housing is such a huge issue that a Google search today yielded 104 million search results.

Among the reasons why the work of pro-industry trade media can be irreplaceable are found in the two screen captures shown below.

Do the Google searches shown, and you’ll see the results as noted.  By the way, click the image and you’ll Part II of our Affordable Housing Focus Group and the related video.

AffordableHousingFocusGroupVideoSearchManufacturedHomeLivingNewsGoogleSearchScreenCaptureResultMobileManufacturedHomeMHLivingNews

To see Part 2 of our Affordable Housing Focus Group video and report on MHLivingNews, click here or above.

There are many things that must take place for manufactured housing to achieve its potential. Among them?  The industry must get to the root issues that keep the industry from producing and selling hundreds of thousands of new homes.

AffordableHousingFocusGroupManufacturedHomeLivingNewsGoogleSearchScreenCaptureResultMobileManufacturedHomeMHLivingNews

To see Part 2 of our Affordable Housing Focus Group video and report on MHLivingNews, click here or above.

The independence, fact-based and authentic stories and quotes are what makes MHLivingNews and MHProNews useful for the industry.

Similarly, the ability of MHProNews of holding those outside and inside of the industry to accountability for accuracy matters to discerning readers.

Examples:

 

Weather Expert’s Surprising, Bombshell Statement on Tornado Deaths and Affordable Manufactured Homes

 

Researchers Shake Up American Dream? Rent vs. Buy, Ken Johnson, Florida Atlantic University, Exclusive to ManufacturedHomeLivingNews

 

Correcting the Record on Housing Affordability, Manufactured Home Shoppers, & MHI

Make no mistake, this can’t be done solo, it is always done in conjunction with and thanks to the support of clients and sponsors of MHProNews and MHLivingNews.

This is an important part of how the industry can advance from low levels, to robust levels. It should be obvious that with shipments in 2017 under 100,000 when RVs are outselling manufactured homes by more than 5 to 1, that something must be done differently.  What’s happened for the last 5, 10 or even 15 years is proven not to work by shipment statistics.

Google’s results – shown above – are an indicator of how this can and does, work.  What’s necessary, is to scale the proven results.  Positive stories must be done on MHLivingNews several times a week.  Debunking negative stores must be done within hours or days, whenever possible. That must happen routinely.  Pretty photos, cool websites, 3D tours, and wonderful videos are fine.  But if they were the solution to the industry’s needs, manufactured homes would be selling well north of 500,000 new homes a year.

Bad news must be supplanted and challenged by the truth and good news.  See the related reports, below.  ## (News, analysis, and commentary.)

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

Related Reports:

“Silver Bullet,” Manufactured Housing’s Monday Morning Sales Meeting

For the Part 2 of the Affordable Housing Focus Group on MHLivingNews, please share the link below:

 

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“No Nails, No Glue,” Architect Creates ‘IMBY’ Flat Pack PreFab

April 18th, 2018 No comments

NoNailsNoGlueArchitectCreatesIMBYInMyBackYardFlatPackPreFabDailyBusinessNewsManufacturedModularPreFabHousingMHProNews

An architect in Sydney, Australia has created what’s billed as an easy-to-assemble “IMBY” – “In My Back Yard” – prefabricated plywood kit home.

 

It’s delivered flat-packed and ready to put together by owners or occupants, says inventor Adriano Pupilli to Domain. And you don’t even need an IKEA Allen key,” says its inventor Adriano Pupilli,

NoNailsNoGlueArchitectCreatesIMBYInMyBackYardFlatPackPreFabDomainDailyBusinessNewsManufacturedModularPreFabExteiriorHousingMHProNews

Pupilli leads a team of architects who’ve drawn their fair share of positive media.  Domain is just the latest to spotlight his firm’s work.

AdrianoPupilliArchitectsTeamPhotosManufacturedModularPrefabHousingIndustryDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

There’s no nails or glue [needed] either,” said Pupilli, “it’s just wedges that lock into each other in a Japanese-style of joinery, and you then just tap them in with a wooden mallet. You can then add extras or take them away, according to how much, or the kind of space you need.”

ShellShedIMBYAADomainFlatPackedPrefabManufacturedHousingIndustryDailyBuisnessNewsMHProNews

The report says the models kits “start at $9800 for a studio, $15,400 for a sleepout, $22,800 for a guest pavilion and $27,600 for a full bach, or basic holiday home.”

According to their website, “Adriano Pupilli Architects is a Sydney-based practice with a passion for thoughtful architecture…”

JewelleryBoxStuidioSelectedFinalistTimberDesignAwardAAAnrianoPupilliArchitectsDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

What the flat packed units don’t seem to include are the fixtures and finish needed to make walls, floors and a ceiling from a box into a livable home.  Quoting, “People looking for that flexibility also provide planning authorities with the opportunity to consider the approvals required, and the necessary zonings.

That’s because enormous confusion exists around whether such structures need planning permission. As long as they’re smaller than 20 square metres in area, under three metres in height, and are called a shed, then they probably won’t, says Mr Pupillo, director of the Manly-based Adriano Pupillo Architects.”

Domain says the “invention has been welcomed by housing affordability expert Adrian Pisarski, executive officer of National Shelter. “I think it’s helpful for a range of people to extend family living, or allowing teenagers to have some separate space.”

In Australia as in the U.S., they have their version of manufactured homes.

Unfortunately, there and here, there is a dose of stigma attached to the manufactured home type of factory built homes.

While these “IMBY”  units may be lower in cost once completed than hiring a contractor, it will likely be quite a bit higher per square foot than a manufactured home.  Here in the U.S., as industry professionals know, manufactured homes are rapidly made move-in ready.

As the Daily Business News reported last year, it seems that there is a search by housing hunters at home and abroad for a single section manufactured home alternative.

Are Americans Hunting for the Single Sectional Manufactured Home Alternative?

Put differently, it’s a reminder that manufactured home industry companies and professionals need to address the image issue at the local market level. “We Provide, You Decide.”  © ## (News, analysis, and commentary.)

Related Reports:

Survey Top 2017 PreFab, Modular, Tiny and 3D Printed Housing News Stories

Yurts – Americans Hunt for an Affordable, Single-Sectional Manufactured Home Alternative

“Silver Bullet,” Manufactured Housing’s Monday Morning Sales Meeting

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SoheylaKovachManufacturedHomeLivingNewsManufacturedHousingIndustryDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews-Submitted by Soheyla Kovach to the Daily Business News for MHProNews.com.

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Manufactured Housing – Regulatory, Other Roadblocks and Potential Solutions, Up for Growth Research, plus Urban Institute Report Revisited

April 17th, 2018 No comments

 

“Sadly, the growing recognition of [restrictive zoning for housing]
by scholars and policy analysts across the political spectrum has so far
not resulted in much political action.”

— Libertarian law professor Ilya Somin,

per the Up for Growth National Coalition,
April 2018.

 

Manufactured homes could ease the affordable housing crisis.
So why are so few being made
?”

–      Urban Institute,
January 2018

Overview

U.S. fell 7.3 million units behind housing demand from 2000 – 2015,” according to new research from the Up for Growth National Coalition, ECONorthwest, and Holland Government Affairs in a media release to the Daily Business News.

ExecutiveSummaryUndersupply7.3MillionUitsUpForGrowthDailyBusinessnewsManufacturedHousingMHProNews

 

Their figure for the production shortfall is similar to one used by the National Association of Realtors (NAR) Lawrence Yun, who says that the nation needs some 8.3 million housing units.

 

LawrenceYunNARShort8.3MillionHousingUnitsRisingRentsHousingPricesCuredOnlyByMoreBuilding

Yun’s NAR research comes to a similar conclusion that Up for Growth has, namely, that there must be significant levels of new construction. Several housing experts believe that factory building is the faster, greener and less costly way of addressing that need. Manufactured housing is the lowest cost permanent housing, per U.S. Census Bureau data.

 

The housing shortage is far more severe than originally believed, and much more widespread,” said Clyde Holland, Founder and CEO of Holland Partner Group and Up for Growth Executive Chairman in their release. “From California to Maine, the supply of housing is simply not matching its growing demand. Not building enough new housing pushes rents up, forces quality of life down, and is a significant drag on the economy. As this research clearly shows, these trends and the barriers to building market-rate and affordable housing are unsustainable. To achieve affordable, sustainable, and vibrant communities, we need a new approach to housing.”

Against that backdrop, there’s the recently produced exchange captured on CSPAN between Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Secretary Ben Carson, and Senator Thom Tillis (R-NC).  That video is below.  Highlights include the fact that Carson called the progress and quality of manufactured homes “amazing.”  In response to Tillis question, Carson said the regulations at HUD regarding manufactured housing have been “ridiculous.”

 

 

Tip

We recommend to first time visitors and others not as familiar with these issues read the text of this report, and then circle back later to read the related reports, linked below. Those links provide additional information, quotes and/or documents.

 

Backdrop

Some tout an American energy policy which should include ‘all of the above’ energy production options.  Similarly, some promote an American affordable housing policy that includes a robust use of all kinds of housing, including housing retention whenever possible, plus the liberal use of modern manufactured homes.

CostBurdeningHousingUnderproductionUpForGrowthDailyBusinesssNewsManufacturedHousingMHProNews

 

But several factors have limited manufactured housing in the past decade-plus.  The graphics and information that follows provide context, point to causes, and potential solutions.

 

HousingStartsHaventKeptPaceUpForGrowthManufacturedHousingIndustryDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

From the Up for Growth report.

 

SunCommunitiesSUI-InvestorPage11ManufacturedHomeVsSingleFamilyHousingManufacturedHomeCommunitiesIndustryDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews600

From publicly traded Sun Communities (SUI) investor presentation.

SunCommunitiesSUI-InvestorPageComparetoMultiFamilyHousing10ManufacturedHomeCommunitiesIndustryDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews600

Publicly trade companies produce reports like the one these in the recent Sun Communities (SUI) provides comparison data, showing the cost of manufactured housing viz a vis single family, and multi-family housing.

 

Some of the responsibility for those limiting elements are laid at the feet of public officials.  There has been a combination of a lack of enforcement of existing laws, as well as overreach on regulations.  Those details are found herein.

 

ManufacturedHomesGAO2014ReprotCompareApartmentsSingleFamilySiteBuiltHousingManufacturedHomesMHLivingNews

The Government Accountability Office (GAO) did a report in 2014 that produced reams of data that underscored the value of modern manufactured homes. For example, even with higher interest rates, manufactured homes are routinely the lowest cost per month for housing. https://www.manufacturedhomelivingnews.com/researchers-shake-up-american-dream-rent-vs-buy-ken-johnson-florida-atlantic-university-exclusive-to-manufacturedhomelivingnews/

 

Others within the manufactured home industry have – by action and inaction, commission and omission – allowed or encouraged policies that resulted in the consolidation of large parts of the industry into fewer hands.  The following published comments by others captures some of those viewpoints.

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ManufacturedHousingIndustryMonopoly-Oligarchy-GeorgeAllen-PostedDailyBusinessNewsManufacturedHousingIndustryMHProNews-

Allen hasn’t denied these comments, but has toned it down, perhaps in a desire to sell his business interests to MHI, a suggestion he’s raised himself.

 

The above concerns have occurred in a manner that several public officials, along with private individuals, believe is monopolistic.

–      There is significant evidence of how this has occurred,

–      what this costs American society,

–      and the role that public officials have played in what many believe has been – at least in part – an artificially manipulated process.

Publications, politicos, and advocates across the left-right divide have commented on these trends, allegations, concerns, and forces.  This publication is far from alone, as the links and quotes reveal. What’s unique here is bringing the various elements into the scope of a single report, with additional linked references.

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

The solution to the affordable housing crisis is hiding in plain sight.  It’s found in the widely under-appreciated manufactured home (MH), which is much better than the majority of the public has been led to believe.

Who says so?

This report will cite:

  • MH Industry,
  • public officials,
  • outside experts,
  • a clip from a focus group of home owners,
  • and outlines the often-surprising findings of third-party researchers, that praise manufactured homes.

Those who take a different view are also briefly examined, each in the light of known facts.

 

Harvard’s Eric Belsky

Experts such as Harvard’s Eric Belksy believed manufactured homes would dominate in sales over conventional housing, by 2010.  That didn’t happen.  Why not?

EricBelksyManufacturedHousingIndustryManufacuredHomeManufacturedHousingInstituteResearchDataAffordbleHousingMHProNewsDailyBuisnessNews575

Belsky was aware of the slide in manufactured home lending and the repossessions that were occurring. See the new home shipment graphic below.  He still made this expert projection of the industry’s coming dominance. Some inside and outside of the industry believe that the kind of issues this report raises explains why Belsky missed the 2010 projection.

This survey will introduce the insights that can help answer that question.

We Provide, You Decide.” ©

MobileHomeShipmentsManufacturedHomeShipmentChartMHIAShipmentsMHIndustryChampionSkylineHUDCodeDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

Note how the Up For Growth period of insufficient growth in new housing has an inverse relationship to the dearth of new manufactured home production in roughly those same years.

 

MHARR on Federal Overreach, and the Under Use of Preemption

Responding to a question from MHProNews, Mark Weiss, J.D., President and CEO of the Manufactured Housing Association for Regulatory Reform (MHARR) said, “the frost free foundation and on site completion rule matters reflect their overreach and are in violation of the manufactured housing statute.  More generally, their failure to do rule making and cost benefit analysis on multiple issues are other major problems,” are among the problems with the administration of the federally regulated HUD Code manufactured housing program.

MHARR members met with HUD Secretary Carson, who pledged to reform the program.

MHARR’s president has previously noted that it is “Time to Enforce Federal Preemption” – meaning, the preemption enjoyed by HUD Code manufactured homes under federal law.

 

Weiss has said that every day that the Duty to Serve (DTS) isn’t fully implemented by the GSEs – which is still under the supervision of the FHFA – is a “gift” to Berkshire Hathaway owned lenders.

Among Weiss’ concerns?

FHFA held closed door meeting(s) with Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) and their member companies, and hasn’t released the minutes of that meeting(s).  Whatever occurred, the bottom line has been a failure to robustly implement DTS.

The GSEs pointed to a lack of current loan performance data from some larger firms in the industry among their reasons for not doing more to support manufactured housing under DTS.  But it should be noted that other data and research already made available to them suggests that there was sufficient evidence for the FHFA to prompt the GSE’s into doing more lending than the tiny pilots that Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac will be launching.

American Bankers Urged to Lend More on Manufactured Homes

From Hawaii to Boston, recent reports in the mainstream media spotlight the push-back and controversies tied to the use of manufactured housing. There are periodic and notable exceptions, such as the examples cited below.

Bloomberg, HousingWire, Realtor and Fox all suggest Manufactured Homes as Important Solution for Affordable Housing in America

But much of that resistance by politicos, some in media, and others are based upon false, misleading and/or outdated information.  Ignorance is part of the problem, so education is part of the cure.

Those public officials who’ve been properly exposed to the realities of modern manufactured homes – as Secretary Carson indicated – are often positive-to-enthusiastic.  One of several examples is found in the video below.

 

 

The comments in the video below were made in 2017.  They reveal the frustration and concerns shared by advocates for independent producers of manufactured housing.  They clearly state what they believe are important elements of what’s holding up the proven, largely private-sector solution, to the affordable housing crisis.

 

 

For at least two decades, third-party researchers have documented their belief in the quality of modern manufactured homes.  Some like Belsky and CFED – rebranded as Prosperity Now – have explained why manufactured housing would be an important part of the future of American home building.  The examples shown and linked are only a sampling.

 

RegulatoryBarrierstoManufacturedHousingPlacementinUrbanCommunitiesHUDPDR-postedManufacturedHomeLivingNews595x357 (1)

What the HUD PD&R screen capture – with linked download available here – reflects is a lack of understanding about how enhanced preemption could solve the affordable housing crisis using mostly private capital. The research is useful, but adding in the missing ingredient of enhanced preemption would make it priceless. 

 

University level research commissioned by HUD, part of their HUD Office of Policy Development and Research (PD&R) series, was published in 2011 under the title, Regulatory Barriers to Manufactured Housing PlacementThat research revealed that manufactured homes appreciated side-by-side with conventional housing.

So, one of the biggest reasons for “NIMBY” – Not In My Back Yard – fear of depreciation caused by manufactured homes nearby, is based upon a myth.  

But part of what makes the HUD PD&R noteworthy is the lack of commentary on federal preemption.

Since manufactured homes are proven to be dynamically similar in quality to conventional housing, and HUD’s own research demonstrates that there is no economic harm to neighboring homes, why not make a robust use of federal preemption?

 

Other Examples of Classic Ignorance – a Lack of the Facts

Many believe that crime and manufactured homes somehow go together.  But third-party research debunks that myth too.

Pride and Prejudice: The Truth About Manufactured Home Communities and Crime

On issue-after-issue – including windstorms and how manufactured housing performs during such events – the realities documented by research are different than what is generally believed.

Weather Expert’s Surprising, Bombshell Statement on Tornado Deaths and Affordable Manufactured Homes

Another study by two university professionals performed late in the Obama Administration suggests the following.  That not having a solution for affordable housing is costing the U.S. economy some $2 trillion dollars annually.  While their specific research doesn’t point to manufactured housing, it does reveal the kind of economic benefits that would flow if the Trump Administration would promote enforcement of existing laws.

Rephrasing, if the government enforces preemption and fully promoted the lending options the federal government already has established by law, more will become manufactured home owners, and more economic growth will follow.

YIMBY vs. NIMBY, Obama Admin Concept Could Unlock $1.95 Trillion Annually, HUD & MH Impact

So, why aren’t preemption and other federal laws already on the books properly enforced?

TruliaLowIncomeHousingImpactOnNearbyHousingValuesDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews600

The Ultimate Manufactured Home Industry Fact$, Data, and Insights – Bullets plus at-a-Glance Infographic

 

The Urban Institute largely positive research on manufactured housing points to key, and troubling, clues to that question.  In fact, the Urban Institute raised that question, as the second quote at the top of this article reflects.

 

Disturbing Answers to Urban Institute’s (UI) Penetrating Question…

The Urban Institute’s report says that manufactured homes are quality. They point to land-use (restrictive zoning) issues, as does the Lincoln Institute or others.  UI notes financing challenges, and slower appreciation, but acknowledge that manufactured homes can and do appreciate.

It’s what’s not in their January 2018 report that point to arguably emblematic examples of what’s gone wrong for those seeking to advance manufactured housing as a key solution for the affordable housing crisis.

For example, when lending is cut off or restricted, that impacts all housing value, site built or manufactured. Further, supply and demand impact housing values.  What linked and other research reveals is that given a level playing field, manufactured housing preforms.

So, when affordable home ownership is widely seen as a social good, why is the playing field not level?

With proper understanding, lending, and public policies, the evidence suggests that manufactured homes would be a good investment for buyers.  Further, manufactured homes routinely provide lower income, and first time buyers an opportunity they may not get in any other way.  Or as one citizen told anti-manufactured home officials, it isn’t a crime to be poor.

“It Isn’t A Crime Time to Be Poor” Citizen Tells Anti-Manufactured Home Lawmakers

Research by CFED – rebranded since as Prosperity Now – reflects the wealth building potential for even lower income Americans.

ManufacturedHousingTopTenTruthsImHomeInnovationsinManufacturedHomesDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

For the rest of the top ten, click here.

 

UI’s Undisclosed Facts

MHProNews learned that one of the four writers of the Urban Institute (UI) research – Ed Golding – used to work for HUD. In fact, sources with ties to HUD said the recently-removed administrator of the HUD Code manufactured housing program – Pam Danner, J.D. – reported to Golding.

Golding knows manufactured housing “well.”  Danner has been the source of years of growing controversy in manufactured housing. Why didn’t Golding and UI disclose his relationship to Danner? Conflict of interest guidelines in university style research suggest that even the appearance of conflict of interest should be disclosed.  So why are there no disclosures on the webpage of the report published by UI?

http://www.mhmarketingsalesmanagement.com/blogs/daily-business-news/wp-content/uploads/2017/11/GeorgeGunnelClaytonHomesRVP-WVMHIFMHAMHIHUDPamDannerMustGo.png

In spite of widespread concerns about Pam Danner, JD, at HUD and her problematic handling of the manufactured housing program, industry voices note that it took months of pressure before the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) began to relent, why? Click here.

Golding, like Danner, didn’t promote federal preemption.  Rather, what they did was authorize heavy regulations that fell disproportionately to smaller producers and independent companies.

 

PamDannerQuestionMarkLightBulbDailyBuisnessNewsMHProNews

Danner appeared on MHI’s stage, yet members and non-members alike found her handling of the program to be problematic.

 

Now You Will Hear — the Rest of the Story

So nowhere on the Urban Institute (UI) webpage where their report was published disclosed:

–      Golding’s bio, and his ties to Danner and HUD’s manufactured home program,

–      That the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) and Berkshire Hathaway owned Clayton Homes and affiliated lenders were part of the UI research, but that they were promised “anonymity” in the published report.  The reality of that statement is based on sources in UI, sent via email to MHProNews. No similar engagement by UI reportedly took place with MHARR members.  Why did only the major players get such special access to input on the UI report, which was published shortly before pending comments to federal regulators was due?

–      Or that Warren Buffett is a lifetime trustee of the Urban Institute.  Buffett also sits on the board of the Gates Foundation, which he’s given billions of dollars of Berkshire Hathaway stock to, and the Gates Foundation in turn donated millions to the Urban Institute.

While some of this can be learned elsewhere on UI’s website, or can be found via public records, none of these items noted in the bullets above were disclosed on the page where their report on manufactured housing is published.

In several messages by MHProNews with them, the Urban Institute only asked for one significant correction to our published reports. That one request?  It was on a point that UI was arguably mistaken. Namely, that the Daily Business News noted that Buffett indirectly had donated to their organization, as outlined in the bullet above, or as is documented in the report linked below.  Thus the concerns raised have gone essentially unaddressed, even though UI was given the opportunity to do so.

Urban Institute Ask for Correction in Analysis of their Manufactured Housing Research, “Follow the Facts,” “Follow the Money”

As manufactured housing advocate, the Rev. Donald Tye, Jr. has noted, the above has the look of interlocking directorates, which are an item that antitrust regulators look for when investigating a possible monopoly.

The Berkshire Hathaway dominated Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) never publicly explained how Lois Starkey, a former vice president of theirs, ended up leaving them and going almost immediately to work for Danner at HUD.  When Danner was transferred away from the manufactured housing program recently, Starkey was dismissed by HUD.  It was learned by MHProNews that MHI requires non-disclosure agreements from their current and recent staffers.

HUD’s Pam Danner Announces former MHI VP Lois Starkey Joining HUD

 

Other Disclosures and Facts “Missed” by the Urban Institute (UI)

UI’s fails to mention enhanced preemption, or they largely underplay regulatory overreach.  Yet their report co-author – Ed Golding – certainly knew about these issues.

EdwardGoldingHUDFHAUrbanInstituteUILinkedInManufacturedHousingIndustryDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

But perhaps as significant, is the clear failures to note that details about the capital/lending point – correctly raised by UI –  but which nevertheless fails to mention how Berkshire Hathaway benefited from FHA/HUD’s 10-10 rule.  Or how Berkshire brands have – at various times – allegedly interfered with the independents in the industry’s ability to tap into capital and lending. These are examples of federal law being applied or ignored in ways that harmed the many, but arguably have benefited the few as a result.

Is there clear evidence for Buffett’s Berkshire choking off lending or capital to kill off competition?

Yes, and it’s been published.

To date, this document shown below, signed by 21st President Tim Williams, stands unchallenged.

21stMortgageCorpTimWillamsJune112009LetterBerkshireHathawayWarrenBuffettClaytonHomesManufacturedHousingIndustryDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

 

Another like it also exists, and is linked from the report found below. Not only is the above described by some industry professionals as a “smoking gun” for a monopolistic power play, its only part of a broader pattern that’s drawn concerns from across the left-right political and economic divide.

Killing Off 100s of Independent Manufactured Home Retailers, Production Companies – Tim Williams/21st Mortgage “Smoking Gun” Document 2

For example. The Nation, a progressive publication in a report linked further above, blasted Buffett’s Berkshire, specifically naming Clayton as part of their alleged monopolistic play.

Maxine Waters Statement, Preserving Access Manufactured Housing Act 2017, Warren Buffett, Clayton Homes

Maxine Waters and other Democrats have called Buffett’s Clayton a “near monopoly.” They demanded a federal investigation by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) (see above, plus related reports and resources, at the end of this report).

The Campaign for Accountability has raised their own issues, and cite their sources.

 

 

Waters and others in Congress and beyond have noted that Berkshire Hathaway dominates the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI).  Two of the four seats on their governing executive committee have been held for years by some of Buffett’s manufactured housing team members.  At present, the chair is a former Clayton division executive, and two others work for a Berkshire brand in manufactured housing.

The Preserving Access to Manufactured Housing Act – which MHI has spearheaded for years – has drawn fire from Waters and those who support no changes to Dodd-Frank.  Preserving Access has two main ‘legs.’

One is the repeal of the so-called MLO (Mortgage License Originator) rule, that arguably helps almost everyone in the industry involved in sales to the public.

The CFPB imposed MLO rule effectively muzzled the free speech rights of manufactured home sellers who didn’t take a test.  According to those who’ve taken the test, the MLO instructions largely have little or no applicable use for manufactured housing.  By contrast, real estate agents have no similar muzzle, and no such license required.  The same point could be made about autos or RVs.  Why does manufactured housing get this unwanted, special treatment?

The other leg raised the points-and-fees that can be charged on low cost loans. This benefits several in the industry, but primarily, benefited Berkshire Hathaway owned brands.

So, MHI – by going through unsuccessful (some say, posturing) efforts to mitigate regulations – is doing the bidding of brands that benefit either way.

Rephrased, Berkshire owned companies arguably benefit if Preserving Access passes or not. Yet this has been the centerpiece of MHI’s lobbying for years.

Manufactured housing for decades was made up for thousands of independent “mom and pop” operations. When smaller businesses give up the fight after years of ever-growing regulations, they will often sell out for less than their normal value would be absent those conditions.  This has led to consolidation of the industry’s smaller companies by larger ones.

While ex-Clayton man Ken Corbin offers a different interpretation of the data, he nevertheless points to some 10,000 independent business have failed in manufactured housing since its peak in 1998.  That 10,000 drop of retailers results in others failing or selling out for less too.

Ken Corbin “the 10,000 Drop,” points to Industry Woe, Causes of Manufactured Housing’s 10 & 20 Year Collapse?

Even Bank of America shut down their profitable manufactured home lending program.  They cited a combination of relatively low total volume, and relatively high regulatory risk.  Heavy regulation, and some would say artificially low new manufactured home sales volume. The U.S. Bank example should speak volumes to seriously researchers.

Barney_Frank wikipediaPostedDailyBgusinesNewsMHProNews

Barney Frank, official photo, credit Wikipedia.

It’s worth noting too that Barney Frank, who’s name is part of the Dodd-Frank bill, said in a letter linked here that some of the regulations imposed on manufactured housing were never indented to apply to the industry.

That letter from Frank to a constituent was provided by that MHProNews reader.  It was published here at that time, and later read into the Congressional record.  In spite of such evidence of legislative intent, the heavy foot-on-the-brake pedal from regulators continued.

It is worth noting that MHI has previously called Frank a ‘champion’ for the industry, and that MHI PAC money has reportedly flowed to him.

As MHI’s own VP said – in the linked report below – that there was essentially no chance of passing Preserving Access. Yet, the association kept pursuing for 4 years a course of action that was known in advance to essentially be doomed to fail.  Why waste the time and money?  Insiders say it in one or two words. Posturing.  Shadow boxing.

2012 Election Results and Coming Lame Duck Session

An MHI insider told MHProNews that ‘the big companies have figured out how to get the little companies to pay for what they want to do.’

Smaller firms, some of whom say off-the-record to the Daily Business News that they feel pressured to be MHI members if they want benefits such as access to 21st lending or other business – and are wittingly or not, feeding the hand that bites them.

So heavy regulations aren’t being mitigated by MHI, because the normal lobbying advocates seem to have an unstated agenda, which allows those regulations to act against the interests of smaller companies.  

In fact, the reason that MHARR exists in large measure is precisely because MHI has for years cozied up to regulators.  Those regulators in turn have imposed – or not mitigated – heavy regulations.

Economists, advocates, and some professional associations have noted, the larger the operation, the more easily it bears the costs of heavy regulation.

To rephrase, smaller companies are at a disadvantage with respect to heavy regulations. Thus, Berkshire Hatchway brands in manufactured housing would arguably benefit whether or not their Preserving Access bill passed.  The same is true of HUD or other regulations. 

What does MHI have to say about such things?

 

Heavy Regulations, Plus Choking Off Capital, Limiting Lending, and Closures or Reduced Price Sales of Businesses Results

Because of that pattern of choking off capital/lending, and heavy regulations, Berkshire owned Clayton has grown from 25 percent of the industry’s production to 50 percent in just 7 years. See Kevin Clayton’s own statements in the video further below.  They confirm Buffett’s strong distaste for competion, “foreign or domestic” – and confirm Buffett’s monopolistic concept.

That Buffett plan is dubbed as broadening “the Moat.”  Does it work?  The MHI produced data, shown below, suggests it does.

MHI-21stMortgageKevinClaytonClaytonHomesManufacturedHoomeCorporationsPlantsDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews_001

Hundreds of independent retailers closed or sold out for less due to the conditions described in this report. That in turn caused several producers of HUD Code manufactured homes to sell out, or close entirely. http://www.mhpronews.com/blogs/daily-business-news/was-the-urban-institute-misled-duped-or-part-of-a-manufactured-housing-industry-scam/

These aren’t conspiracy theories, as the Nation, MHARR, the Atlantic magazine, and several other sources from inside-and-outside of manufactured housing have made clear.

AmericasFastestDyingBusinessMobileHomesManufacturedHomesAtlanticIBISWorldDailyBusinessNewsResearchDataReportsMHProNews

IBISWorldAtlanticManufacturedHousingIndustryDailyBusinessNewsResearchReportsMHProNews

Heavy regulatory burdens, combined with choking off capital and other items noted in this report, would result in a loss of independent manufactured home retailers. That in turn would “kill off” or force to sell for less, independent producers of HUD Code manufactured homes that supplied those independents. IBIS World and the Atlantic were proven to be correct. Learn more, linked here.

 

Rather, they are examples of the truth hiding-in-plain-sight.

A close reading of Buffett’s modus operandi and business philosophy reveal quotes pointing to exactly what’s occured in manufactured housing.

The sharks in the waters of Buffett’s moat – see quote below – arguably include, but are not limited to, heavy regulations, cutting off or limiting finance, and capital options. These and other items may look at first blush like marketplace happenstance.  But upon closer examination, they were very much within Buffett’s brands and the association they dominate – MHI’s – ability to influence.  They were a combination of government regulations – and business strategies that utilized regulators – apparently working against smaller companies.  The results are jobs lost, and affordable housing opportunities for millions are lost via this process too.

WarrenBuffettTheMoatQuoteMemeManufacturedHousingIndustryDailyBusinessNEwsMHProNEws

 

Kevin Clayton cites “the moat” time and again, during an in-depth video interview, found further below.  These concepts of Buffett’s are stated in his own words.  He also says how they even use education and non-profits (see related reports, linked below) or other resources too.  Indeed, if MHI and UI (both nonprofits) are examples, each have both provided benefits to Clayton and other Berkshire brands operating in manufactured housing.

 

Preemption, Preemption…

University level researchers rarely mention preemption. Why is it so under promoted by MHI?  For example, why didn’t MHI have UI include it in their manufactured housing report? Some say MHI reports are ‘weaponized‘ to keep up the appearance of activity, while in practice doing little.  Note what former MHI Chair Nathan Smith said in the video posted in the resources, further below.  

As has been noted above, MHARR and independents want to see preemption promoted.

But federal preemption been throttled by prior administrations on both sides of the political aisle.

There may be a change coming under the Trump Administration, if they in fact “enforce the law,” which is a broad theme of theirs. HUD Secretary Carson has promised reforms.  He speaks in general terms about public private partnerships.

But Dr. Carson has not yet publicly commented on preemption.  If change is coming, it has not yet occurred.

Secretary Carson is scheduled to speak at MHI’s upcoming annual conference in Vegas.

Meanwhile, millions who could own for a home for less than rent are harmed by the issues noted herein. So too are the independent businesses that could serve them.

MHI produces ‘research,’ which is often a mish-mash of accurate and inaccurate information.  What are savvy shoppers who spot inconsistencies, or hear so much problematic reporting, to believe?  Why doesn’t MHI correct and address root issues, as needed?

By contrast, the RV industry is outselling manufactured housing by some 5 to 1.  Even towable RVs are higher cost per square foot, are a luxury item, and have avoided the kinds of onerous regulations that manufactured housing has. The RV example is just one of many ways of noting that an industry that shipped some 372,000 new homes in 1998, has slid, while RVs have risen.

MHI is the only national association that claims to deal with post-production issues.

RVAnnuaShipments2011to2016RVIALogoDataCompareManufacturedHousingIndustryDataDailyBusNewsMHProNews

 

Enforcing the Law

Arguably federal budgets would be reduced over time by a steady enforcement of HUD’s federal preemption under the Manufactured Housing Improvement Act of 2000. Why?  Because the need for subsidized housing would diminish over time.  As the legislation that created and supported manufactured homes (MH) notes, the industry is largely providing unsubsidized – and truly affordable – housing.

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RevDonaldTyeJrManufacturedHousingAdvocateQuickestWayWealthIndustryVoicesMHProNews500

 

Beyond Capital Control, Supporting Candidates Who Supported Policies Benefiting Buffett’s Business Units

Buffett backed Secretary Hillary Clinton for president, and President Barack Obama before her.  That would seem to run counter to what MHI and then Chairman, Tim Williams/21st Mortgage Corp said he wanted.

VicePresidentMikePenceWifeKarenHandOverHeartPledgeColts49ersGameWashingtonTimesDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

Notice. One can agree or disagree with 21st Mortgage CEO and prior MHI Chairman Tim Williams’ presentation, from which the slide above was taken with permission.  But either way, the question remains.  How is it possible that Williams was intellectually at odds with Berkshire Hathaway Chairman, Warren Buffett. Or was it all, as some think, a head fake? ‘Shadow boxing?’  Buffett has noted that most don’t read as he does, and most don’t pay attention to history, as he does.

 

Other Avenues to Capital, Reduced or Delayed

On other avenues to access capital and lending, FHA, and the Government Sponsored Enterprises (GSEs) had what seemed like an unusual favoritism that tilted toward the practical benefit of Berkshire Hathaway.

The Duty to Serve (DTS) mandated by the 2008 Housing and Economic Recovery Act (HERA 2008), was designed in part to provide financing for manufactured housing.  But Berkshire Hathaway’s 21st Mortgage Corp President, Tim Williams, slow walked DTS (see linked report).

MHI memos to members touted their support for DTS.  But Fannie Mae’s Paul Barretto, when asked by MHProNews, admitted that neither 21st or Vanderbilt Mortgage and Finance – both owned by Berkshire Hathaway – provided them with the data they requested.

Another MHI lender shed more light on this topic, in the report linked below.

MHI Lender Shakes Up DTS and MLO Rule Discussions

On FHA Title I lending, a so-called “10-10” capital rule was established.  At that time, it meant that only 21st and Vanderbilt – again, both owned by Berkshire Hathaway – were the sole manufactured home lenders that could qualify to make those loans.  Once more, government set standards were set that benefited Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway.

In fairness, MHI has made publicized efforts on many of these matters.

But they’ve come up short every time, and have for several years.

Thus some inside and outside of MHI have speculated, how sincere was the MHI effort?  For example, why did other industries escape similar regulations from the CFPB, when manufactured housing couldn’t?

KennyLipschutzQuotePoorJobOfLobbyinginMHIndustry-postedMHProNews48thMHINCClist

An MHI member company.

Manufactured housing state associations were largely forced to play along, per reports from state executive directors to MHProNews.  See the report, linked below. Since that report was published, even more state association executives have privately confirmed the same allegation.

Most states are as-or-more dominated financially and in the numbers of members/board positions as MHI is by Berkshire Hathaway,  and their allied firms.  These state execs, if they like their jobs, can’t publicly buck MHI or Buffett’s brands.

But two states, who were not as tied to Berkshire Hathaway, broke with MHI last year. They specifically cited MHI’s failure to do what they claim to be working toward.

State Associations, Companies Quit Membership in Manufactured Housing Institute, (MHI), One Explains in Writing, ‘Why?’

ELS’ Sam Zell has not per se pointed his finger at Berkshire or MHI, which is company is a member of, and has had a board seat too.

But the description Zell’s made of the industry’s failures in finance leaves few other realistic options to consider as to what he meant by his published comments.

ELS’ Sam Zell – Compliance Costs Destroys Smaller Businesses = Consolidation

 

Media, MHI and Berkshire Hathaway

MHI member Frank Rolfe blasted MHI last year for their failure to engage the media as needed to defend and promote the industry.

SuzanneFelberFrankRolfeRichardADickJennisonAmericanHousingAdvocatesManufacturedHousingIndustryDailyBuisnessNewsMHProNews600

MHI uses surrogates, like Suzanne Felber, to promote them and/or attack those who question their policies and positions. Several – if not all of these apparent surrogates – receive money directly from MHI, or from a Berkshire Hathaway brand, and/or get other benefits – or some combination of the above. These concerns and allegations are found inside and outside of the MHI membership.

Sources say that 21st Mortgage and others involved with Berkshire Hathaway “spoke with” Rolfe, who after several critiques of MHI and their leadership were published here in MHProNews, went silent late in 2017.

21st is an apparent sponsor for Rolfe.

But prior to going quiet about MHI, Rolfe had plenty to say.

FrankRolfeMHIHypocrisyQuote-MHProNews

While MHI award-winner Marty Lavin’s comments were made about a different topic. That said, don’t his principles apply to the pattern of activity noted herein?

FollowTheMoneyPayMoreAttentionToWhatPeopleDoThanWhatTheySayMartyLavin6MillionYachtManufacturedHousingIndustryDailyBusinessNews600

Lavin is an MHI award winner, and a success story in communities, retail and finance.

What Lavin has been outspoken about were items related to issues like financing and the public image of the industry.

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

Lavin has lashed MHI directly on their media engagement, or lack thereof. Failure to address the image/media issue, per numbers of industry members, holds the industry back in its public acceptance.  For that matter, failure of federal officials to clear up the record as it relates to their work with manufactured housing also causes the industry harm.

“Kevin…the Problem of Your Industry…”

Yet, Berkshire Hathaway owns a number of their own media outlets.  MHI has its own media relations people. They routinely won’t engage to correct the record, as needed. What gives?

Kevin Clayton in the softball video interview in the related reports further below said they were prepared 7 years ago to work on the image issue.  It was only late last year, as the heat around MHI has risen, that a tepid, toe-in-the-water effort was finally launched. It’s been an embarrassment in terms of public impact.

Why haven’t they done more, when the stories about manufactured housing are so compelling?

The working hypothesis by many is that by allowing the foot-to-stay-on-the-brake pedal via:

–      heavy regulation, which disproportionally impacts smaller firms than larger ones,

–      failure to enforce preemption,

–      failure to address the image issue and engage with the media, while posturing such via ‘advertorials’ that have proven to have no noticeable market impact,

–      capital control,

–      and limiting lending,

all of these have resulted in pressures on independents.  The net result, in the time since the video interview with Clayton produced, (shown further below),  half of manufactured housing production, and in some states, up to 6o or 70 percent of retail sales from a sales center or community, flows through Clayton Homes and/or a Berkshire Hathaway connected brand.

In a one trillion-dollar annual housing industry, manufactured housing sank instead of grew for several years.  That’s the opposite of what Eric Belsky and others believed would happen.  Don’t the facts and concerns noted help explain why?

LATonyKovach-QuestioningNYSAAteam-NewYorkHousingAssociation-MHProNews-com-PhotoCreditMarkSimon-250x167

L. A. “Tony” Kovach, photo by Mark Simon, shows Kovach engaging with SAAs in NY.  State officials were being accused of having a rogue field regulator. Kovach is the publisher of the industry’s two largest and most popular trade media, MHLivingNews.com and MHProNews.com.

Belsky wrote his projection for manufactured housing before Warren Buffett bought Clayton.

The year Buffett bought Clayton, he then bought and combined it with Oakwood Homes.  That created in about a year the industry’s largest producer.  Their size and market domination — using their moat principles – have steadily grown since then.

Sometimes outrageous cases of local officials overreaching on manufactured housing take place.  For example, New York State had a regulator that reportedly said he would put manufactured housing “out of business” in his state.

What did HUD’s Danner do?

What did MHI do?  It was not until months after Dr. Carson became HUD Secretary, that Danner was finally removed from the HUD program.

 

Conventional Housing, and Up for Growth

Conventional ‘on site’ or stick-builders are not able to keep up with the growing demand for housing. The new report by the Up for Growth National Coalition states it would take many years to catch up.  See their chart below.

What the facts suggest is that that factory-based home building alone is able to more rapidly train workers, and ramp up housing production. Site builders can’t compete with manufactured housing on affordability.  Nor can they readily compete in speed of construction.

UptheGrowthHousingSHortageAdditionalHousingProductionNeededPerYearDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

In theory, a factory can ramp up production more rapidly than conventional builders can. The costs will also be lower, and the homes will be ‘greener,’ with less waste too.

At some point, sources suggest that Clayton will decide they have absorbed as much of the retail and production in the industry as they can, without stirring up even more legal challenges to their alleged plan to monopolistically dominate manufactured housing.  While there is word that DOJ is investigating, there is no announced case to date involving Berkshire, MHI and ongoing allegations of monopolistic practices.

ManufacturedHousingIndustry50000CommunitiesCavcoManufacturedHousingInstituteMHIDailyBusinessNewsManufacturedHousingIndustryFactCheckMHProNews

 

CapeCodStyleHomeManufacturedHousingIndustryDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

There are a wide variety of styles available in manufactured homes today, including multilevel models, or those built over a partial or full basement.

MostMenAppearnNeverConsideredWhatHouseIsNeedlesslyPoorAllTheirLivesHenryDavidThoreauManufacturedHomeLivingNews

Every home in the collage above is a HUD Code manufactured home.

 

Buffett and Politics

Buffett has said he won’t attack President Trump.  The Trump Administration, if it follows through on stated principles, may offer some hope for regulatory relief, as MHARR and others have argued.

But while Buffett himself has largely been silent since the election, his surrogates have been attacking the president.

Buffett Blasts Trump, via Classic Twist

While

  • legal challenges,
  • federal investigations,
  • regulatory reviews,
  • and other efforts slowly work their way through the system,
  • thousands of manufactured home operations have been forced out of business or sold out for less than their value would have been under normal conditions.
  • Is it a coincidence that this fits Buffett’s self proclaimed love for a bargain?
  • Or how it fits his oft-repeated principle of expanding “the moat?”

Industry observers and advocates note that much of this would not be possible without various federal agencies overtly putting the thumb on the scales in ways that harms smaller, independent business.

Acts of omission and/or commission have caused consolidation that may seem at first blush to be ‘natural’ forces at work in the market. But upon a closer look, they appears to be anything but natural, once the details are studied.  And that’s an advantage to those involved, because it requires study of an industry that has sat unjustly in the shadows for far too long.

This isn’t to necessarily imply that there are a number of back room deals, although they are possible.

But the reality exists that onerous regulations have harmed the manufactured home industry, and a conglomerate has benefited from that time and again.  Intelligent readers can do their own math.

RegulationsCostShareHomePrice-creditNHAB-postedDailyBusinessNews-ManufacturedHousingIndustry=MHProNews-com-

Source, NAHB study.

regulatory-compliance-costs-for-manufacturers-source-national-assoc-manufacturers-posted-masthead-mhpronews0-com-_001-575x298

Source, NAM.

 

Related Nuts and Bolts

Berkshire’s Tim Williams’ can’t take back his own point that responding to negative media could benefit the industry.  It is normally what associations like MHI do.  But for whatever reasons, MHI has in fact has either largely avoided, or has done with fanfare and little impact.  The logic would be to respond to false claims as they arise, to correct the record, and in time, establish the reality.  Williams admitted to MHProNews that doing so would be a reasonable course of action.

TimWilliamsMediaRelationsManufacturedHousingIndustryDailyBuisnessNewsMHProNews-500x277

MHProNews was engaged for years at MHI, until they ‘discovered’ that we were news, and said in writing that they had no such membership category.  Our publisher spent years working within their system. He was routinely praised for pro-industry work.

TimWilliamsMHProNewsMHLivingNewsGoodCommunicationsResourcesILogonLatestNewsBigAssetExplainWhyIndustryVoices-768x339

MHProNews’ publisher arranged for public discussions at MHI events of how problematic issues could be successfully addressed.  Those efforts were praised. But they were not followed up on.

AnnParmanVPManufacturedHousingInstituteMHILogoLATonyKovachMobileManufacturedHomeLivingNewsMHProNews800

Williams, who for years was MHI’s chairman, can’t deny his prior praise for the independence, and value of this and our sister publication, MHLivingNews.

TimWilliamsWeAllMakeMistakesTonyCorrectedErrorsDailyBusinessNewsMHProNewsSo against that backdrop, why didn’t MHI’s SVP Rick Robinson answer questions about their policies and postures regarding HUD?  Or other problematic decisions made by the Arlington, VA based association?  Robinson ducked questions in front of dozens of industry professionals, gathered at a 5 state association meeting in Deadwood, SD in 2017.

RickRobinsonManufacturedHousingInstituteMHIDailyBuisnessNewsMHProNews

MHI’s president – knowing MHProNews had called for pointed questions at an event that was not theirs to control – cancelled a public presentation in January 2018, after the following report was published.

The Top Twelve Questions for Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) CEO, Richard “Dick” Jennison

MHI and Berkshire Hathaway have declined numerous opportunities to debate or respond to these issues in public.  Instead, they’ve attempted other means of distracting or detracting from those who raise these concerns.  MHARR has made similar observations.

So while everyone is innocent until proven guilty in a court of law in America, the concerns noted above have gone unrefuted by MHI, or Berkshire Hathaway.

What will happen with Secretary Carson and the HUD Code manufactured home program?

 

Summary

The nation needs millions of units of affordable housing.

The Census Bureau says that manufactured housing is about half the cost of conventional construction.

HUD regulations requires that manufactured homes perform like conventional housing, and it does so at dramatically reduced costs. Manufactured housing enjoys – on paper – “enhanced preemption” established by the Manufactured Housing Improvement Act of 2000. So, the solution hiding in plain sight is manufactured housing.

Much of the affordable housing crisis could be solved by private capital, so long as enhanced preemption was routinely enforced.

Enhanced preemption and a robust use of Duty to Serve (DTS), FHA lending, and other government backed loans would level that playing field for independents in manufactured housing, and would make manufactured home purchases even more affordable for consumers.  Over time, that could correct the association challenges that currently exist, because of alleged Berkshire Hathaway dominance.

Conventional building can’t keep up with the needs, and would take longer to ramp up than factory builders would.

Be it the tragic need for housing in Puerto Rico post-Maria, or the growing need for affordable homes in Hawaii, or for the rest of the nation in between, manufactured homes are a proven path for millions.

Hawaii’s First “Trailer Park” on Oahu – Civil Beat’s Report Draws Heat

And once understood, modern manufactured housing is appealing enough for even millionaires and billionaires who gladly own them.

If they are good enough for the rich and famous, why not society at large?

Movie Mogul Rupert Wyatt and Screenwriter Erica Beeney’s Magnificent Manufactured Home

Why Are Billionaires Attracted to Manufactured Homes?

To borrow a phrase from Rand Paul about the two major parties and apply it to the manufactured housing industry, there is evidence of an “unholy alliance” – tacit or active – between government and deep pockets that have kept this solution for affordable housing from being fully and properly deployed.  Whatever the unseen realities may be, the known results are the same.

This, say researchers, costs the nation perhaps 2 trillion dollars a year in lost productivity that would otherwise exist. Millions could be building equity in affordable homes, instead of throwing their hard-earned money away on rent. After over 18 months of published reports, giving MHI and Berkshire Hathaway numerous opportunities to respond, they’ve ducked the questions – and allegedly pressured advertisers – instead.

Once you eliminate the impossible, whatever remains, no matter how improbable, must be the truth.” – Arthur Conan Doyle, author of the Sherlock Holmes detective tales, per BrainyQuote.com.  ## (News, analysis, and commentary.)

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

Related Reports and Videos:

Videos begin with MHI President Richard “Dick” Jennison surprisingly arguing for slow growth. Low volume puts pressure on – and reduces the values of -smaller companies.

Next, is Nathan Smith – then MHI chairman – laughing about keeping the good news about the industry a secret, and admitting that MHI had made mistakes and needs to be more pro-active in the future. The problems noted have resulted in consolidation in production, land-lease communities – like the sector that Smith is working in – and retail. Nice admission, but did MHI performance in fact improve? Over four years later, where is a single clear cut MHI win on a big issue?

One may not realize it from the bulk of media reports, which routinely go unanswered by MHI’s media relations people, as Frank Rolfe noted. Yet, manufactured home owners – per third party research – are happy with their homes and lifestyle. The affordable housing focus group video includes comments from actual manufactured home owners. This is part of a planned multi-segment series.  Part one, is linked here.

Kevin Clayton in this softball interview below makes numerous surprising admissions about Warren Buffett, and how their grow “the moat” concepts operates. As Clayton says, the moat is designed to ever expand.  Buffett’s said he expects them to successfully expand and expand. That hurts competition.  Reports linked on this page further below are used to illustrate some of Kevin’s comments. Otherwise, the words spoken are unaltered.

Warren Buffett quotes followed by Buffett in his own words are the focus of the video below.  They show Buffett explaining some of the same concepts – such as “the moat,” and use of capital, which Kevin Clayton spoke about in his video, above.

Award winning independent retailer, Alan Amy, explaining why billionaires are buying up manufactured housing.

A montage of home owners and professionals, including a retired real estate agent, millennial, and a vet, all talking about their manufactured homes.

A walk down memory lane that takes viewers through trailer house, mobile home, and manufactured housing history in just minutes.

Industry professionals, on stage, questioning the effectiveness of MHI and their legislative efforts.

The reports linked below are just some of the dozens of reports published by MHProNews.  MHARR has done their own research.  It should be noted that for years, MHProNews published both MHARR and MHI news.  MHI suspended providing their news directly to MHI a few years ago, well prior to the more recent ‘heavy fact checks’ of their work.

Equal Justice, Citizen Power, and Manufactured Housing

“The Solution to the Affordable Housing Crisis is Hiding in Plain Sight”

 

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

Warren Buffett, “the Moat,” Manufactured Housing, Berkshire Hathaway, Clayton Homes, 21st Mortgage, Vanderbilt, Wells Fargo, NAI…

Tunica, Nashville Trade Shows and Manufactured Housing Glory Days

MH Lending, FEMA and False Profits (and False Prophets)

MHARR vs. MHI on DOE Energy Rule, Pushback Pay$ Off?

NAHB Report – High Cost of Regulations Impact Housing – and Manufactured Housing

 

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

An Examination of Manufactured Housing as a Community- and Asset-Building Strategy, Harvard JCHS, NeighborWorks, Ford Foundation

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

While Manufactured Housing Overall Rises, Some Slip Sliding Away

$58,000 PreFabs, Videos, Updates of More Hi-Tech Backers

“Trailer House Trauma,” Fresh Look at Manufactured Housing’s Opportunities

 

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Hawaii’s First “Trailer Park” on Oahu – Civil Beat’s Report Draws Heat

April 17th, 2018 No comments

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Hawaii’s Governor David Ige issued a proclamation in 2017 to deal with that state’s growing problem with homelessness.

 

Affordable housing is big issue in Hawaii, as it is in many parts of the mainland United States.

Oahu Civil Beat’s Natanya Friedheim wrote a report in March about the latest effort under Gov. Ige’s proclamation to ease their homeless crisis.

That story by Friedheim drew sharp criticism from a civil rights advocate in her state.MarshaRoseJoynerDrMartinLutherKingJrCoalitionHonoluluAdvertiserDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

The reason?

Nope, they are not trailer parks,” is the subheading from Marsha Rose Joyner, of Honolulu. “I find that the headline “Oahu’s First Trailer Park Just The Latest In New Wave Of Public Housing” is salacious and terribly misleading,” said Joyner, who is identified by Civil Rights Movement Vet as the “past president of the Hawaii Martin Luther King Jr. Coalition.”

Joyner makes points editors and journalists in Hawaii – and beyond – should take to heart.

Addressing Friedheim’s choice of terminology, Joyner said, “The article continues “It is in essence Oahu’s first trailer park.” That simply is not true,” in a letter to Civil Beat’s editor.

The residents of the Waianae Coast have enough problems without Civil Beat demeaning their new homes, alluding to the stigma of trailer trash and stripping them of their dignity before they move in,” Joyner chides Friedheim.

Joyner isn’t shy about her views.  Writing about America’s involvement in the Middle Eastern wars, she wrote in 2003, “A time comes when silence is betrayal.”  Nor was she silent in a more recent claim of discrimination involving a ten-year veteran police officer.

So, it is interesting to note Joyner’s unwillingness to be “silent” in the case of Friedheim’s incorrect and prejudicial terminology.

Often people use the terms trailer and mobile home interchangeably. There is a huge difference,” Joyner correctly stated.

TrailerHouseMobileHomeManufacturedHomeFactoryBuiltHousingEvolution101MHProNews-MHLivingNews

By an act of Congress in 1974, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development was designated as the government agency to oversee the Federal Manufactured Housing, “The Office of Regulatory Affairs and Manufactured Housing,” Joyner wrote.

The small living units provide homeless families more stability than they might find in shelters or on the streets, but it is unclear how long people will live in them,” Friedheim said of the new housing option.

CivilBeatKahuikiVillageNimitzHighwayHawaiiDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

The photo and text above are part of Friedheim’s article, that Joyner critiqued. These are not mobile homes, or manufactured homes.  They are Japanese prefabs. Per her report in Civil Beat, the units apparently don’t meet many standards that Americans would find common in all housing, including manufactured homes.

Some of the prefab housing that Friedham described would be $120,000 for 1,000 square feet. That’s more than double what a typical single section home installed on the mainland would be.  In late 2017, the national average for a new single section home was about $50,000, and would be about that 1000 sq. feet, or perhaps larger, per U.S. Census Bureau data.  The national average for a typical multi-sectional would be under $100,000, in late 2017.

SukupManufacturingCoManufacturedHousingIndustryDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

The photo and text above are also part of Friedheim’s article, which fails to make clear that these steel bin units are emergency shelters designed to sleep as many as 10 people.  But these Sukup units aren’t permanent housing in the sense that a manufactured home would be, which by federal law, must include cooking, and bathing facilities.

  

The Controversy Highlight the Issues

Hawaii has a population of about 1.42 million people. Gov. Ige’s efforts to fight homelessness claims there’s some 7,200 homeless in the state.

That’s down by several hundred, per the governor’s office, due to their efforts to ease restrictions on alternative housing, like the examples shown from Civil Beat, above.

On Feb 7, 2018, “the average rent for a studio apartment in Hawaii is a whopping $1,821. For one-bedroom apartments, it’s $1,903. The price jumps to $2,453 for two-bedroom apartments and $2,977 for three-bedroom apartments,” stated Smart Asset.

As of 2017 the median price for a single family home in Hawaii was $730K. Condos were $390K. Average rent in Hawaii (Oahu) for a studio will vary based on location but expect to pay around $1,670 with Waikiki studios going from $1,400 to about $1,700,” says Aim for Awesome’s housing report about the island.

Even allowing for shipping costs, manufactured homes would be a fraction of such figures.

FabMac – a manufactured home operation in Hawaii – said in post-dated 2015, that since 2006, some 20 manufactured homes had been sold and installed there. But a source in manufactured housing told MHProNews that tough restrictions were part of what kept them from doing more business on the islands.

The video posted below uses several incorrect terms, and the cost data can’t be relied upon, as much of it was not accurate, even at the time it was filmed. That said, the video reflects insights from Hawaiians who were interested in seeing more manufactured housing on the islands. Short interviews by “KentJ1” are laced together.  They paint a picture of why manufactured homes – which the video incorrectly calls “mobile homes” –  aren’t already being more utilized there.

It’s hard enough to find the truth and state it clearly, isn’t it? Even the truth is getting harder to identify,” Joynor wrote in 2003. As was noted above, her topic was different than housing. But the principles behind her words about the difficulty in finding the truth echo the thoughts of manufactured housing activist, the Rev. Donald Tye, Jr.

Tye has promoted the use of manufactured housing’s enhanced preemption, in order to provide blacks and others an opportunity to build equity that affordable home ownership provides.

RevDonaldTyeJrBusinessmanManufacturedHousingAdvocateDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

Tye explained that public housing – an entitlement – often yields addiction. Ownership vs. renting or living in “projects” leads to integrity, a view he likens to those of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Hawaii, along with other states that struggle with affordability issues, would benefit significantly by an application of the enhanced preemption provided under the Manufactured Housing Improvement Act of 2000 (MHIA 2000 – see related reports, linked below).

But ignorance about the MHIA 2000, plus the challenges of NIMBY, zoning, and placement restrictions are only part of the problem.

A historic lack of follow through by HUD in enforcing preemption has arguably harmed the citizens of Hawaii, and other states.

EconomicRacismIlGenAssemblyRevDonTyeJr-JDHarperArkManufacturedHousingAssoc-IndustryVoicesMHProNews

http://www.MHProNews.com/blogs/industryvoices/harper-thank-you-rev-donald-tye-fighting-for-enhanced-preemption-of-manufactured-homes/

That has a ripple effect in an economy. A source with deep ties to HUD told MHProNews in 2017 that an attorney there tasked with enforcing preemption made it a habit of avoiding invoking that federal power.

MostMenAppearnNeverConsideredWhatHouseIsNeedlesslyPoorAllTheirLivesHenryDavidThoreauManufacturedHomeLivingNews

Every home in the photo collage above is a HUD Code manufactured home.

Will the Trump Administration and HUD Secretary Ben Carson change that pattern?

Carson’s recent comments praising the “amazing” progress in manufactured housing, and branding many of the regulations at HUD as “ridiculous” may provide a clue that change is coming.  They’ve frozen regulations at HUD.  A top-down review was ordered.  Will that review bring enforcement of federal preemption?  Or an end to “interpretative bulletins” (IB) that don’t meet the standards set by the MHIA 2000? Time will tell.

As Joyner said, there are times when one must not be silent.  ## (News, analysis, commentary.)

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

Related Reports:

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

“Move, Open, Live” De Rose Industries & Senator Thom Tillis’ Mobile Home Comments

Is More Manufactured Housing Coming to Hawaii?

 

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Sunday Morning Weekly Recap – Manufactured Housing Industry Headline News 4.8.2018 to 4.15.2018

April 15th, 2018 No comments

SundayMorningWeeklyManufacturedHousingINdustryHeadlineNewsRecapDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews545x420

The manufactured home industry grows both older, and younger.  We pause to remember the passage of ELS’ Howard Walker, J.D.  Our sincerest condolences to all of those touched by his loss.

 

In the headlines for the week that was, you’ll find new resources on MHLivingNews and MHProNews.

There’s more research, market reports, data, and news stories you won’t find anywhere else – or done as timely, with independence, industry understanding and depth – as you will on factory-built housing’s twin leading trade media.

Let’s dive right in…

 

What’s New on MHLivingNews

MHLivingNewsImprovedLivingForLe$$taglinedropshadow

The Ultimate Manufactured Home Industry Fact$, Data, and Insights – Bullets plus at-a-Glance Infographic

 

What’s New on the Masthead

Happy MH Owners? Good Professional Actors? Overlooked, “Honorable People”

 

What’s New on the Daily Business News on MHProNews

DailyBusinessNewsLogoMHProNewsLogo (1)

Saturday 4.14.2018


Howard Walker, Equity Lifestyle Properties Vice Chair, Passed Away

 

Friday 4.13.2018

Skyline Reports Results, Including FEMA Manufactured Home Sales, Costs of Pending Champion Deal

Skyline Reports Results, Including FEMA Manufactured Home Sales, Costs of Pending Champion Deal

Zillow Goes Deeper into Housing, “Take Thumb of What’s Holding Economy Back,’ Plus MH Market Updates

Buffett Blasts Trump, via Classic Twist

Buffett Blasts Trump, via Classic Twist

“Sexual Predators” Beware! MH Community Owners! Retailers Warning – New Federal Sexual Harassment Initiative

“Sexual Predators” Beware! MH Community Owners! Retailers Warning – New Federal Sexual Harassment Initiative

 

Thursday 4.12.2018

City Considers Manufactured Homes on Scattered Lots for More Affordable Housing

City Considers Manufactured Homes on Scattered Lots for More Affordable Housing

Manufacturers Roaring Back, Hiring, Growing, Investing – Plus MH Market Update$

 

The Ultimate Manufactured Home Facts Summary and Infographic 2018

 

Evergreen, Manufactured Homes and NIMBY, “Why the Feds Must Step In”

Evergreen, Manufactured Homes and NIMBY, “Why the Feds Must Step In”

 

Wednesday 4.11.2018

Happy Manufactured Homeowners, Honorable MH Pros – The Untold Story

Happy Manufactured Homeowners, Honorable MH Pros – The Untold Story

Marketers Alert – Galloway on Zuckerberg, FB – Plus MH Market UPdates

Manufactured Home Loan Delinquencies Rising, Per ABA, FED

Trump Administration and the Manufactured Housing Industry

Trump Administration and the Manufactured Housing Industry

 

Tuesday 4.10.2018

Triad Financial Service’s Parent Company, ECN Capital – First Data Report

Triad Financial Service’s Parent Company, ECN Capital – First Data Report

Criminal Leaks Continue, China’s Xi Signal Eases Tariff Trade Fears, Plus MH Market Updates

 

$27+Billion Authorized by HUD, Available for Disaster Recovery, Which Manufactured Home Operations Will Be in Line?

$27+Billion Authorized by HUD, Available for Disaster Recovery, Which Manufactured Home Operations Will Be in Line?

UMH CEO Sam Landy Touts and Tempers Manufactured Home Operation’s Expectations

SamLandyUMHPropertiesCEOPresidentNAREITDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

http://www.mhpronews.com/blogs/daily-business-news/umh-ceo-sam-landy-touts-and-tempers-manufactured-home-operations-expectations/

 

Monday 4.9.2018

Ending Sales Tax on Manufactured Homes, Law Center – Which Praised MH Quality, Importance

CNN’s Fareed, Fox’s Tucker Carlson on Trade, China, & Tariffs, Plus MH Market Updates

‘You Are Either Clayton Homes, or You’re Not’ – Monday Morning MH Sales Meeting

‘You Are Either Clayton Homes, or You’re Not’ – Monday Morning MH Sales Meeting

Media Bias, Ignorance, Manufactured Homes, Agenda Journalism, the Truth About “Fake News”

Media Bias, Ignorance, Manufactured Homes, Agenda Journalism, the Truth About “Fake News”

 

Sunday 4.8.2018

Sunday Morning Weekly Recap – Manufactured Housing Industry Headline News 4.1.2018 to 4.8.2018

Sunday Morning Weekly Recap – Manufactured Housing Industry Headline News 4.1.2018 to 4.8.2018

And that’s all she wrote… ## (Weekly headline news recap, analysis, and commentary.)

(Third party images are shown under fair use guidelines.)

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“Move, Open, Live” De Rose Industries & Senator Thom Tillis’ Mobile Home Comments

April 4th, 2018 Comments off
MoveOpenLiveThomTillisMobileHomeComments

A Detroiter model mobile home with a “bump out.”

When U.S. Senator Thom Tillis (R-NC) spoke at an oversight hearing with HUD Secretary Ben Carson about a “mobile home” with a “bump out,” likely few understood just how keen an insight that statement was.

 

Back in the pre-HUD Code days of the factory-built home industry – prior to June 15, 1976 – there were mobile home models that had “pull outs,” “expando room” or “bump outs.”  It is likely that Tillis’ personal experience with that which prompted his timely “walk down memory lane.”

Consider those mobile home era “bump outs” as similar to the slide outs found in RVs, only in mobile homes, they were routinely larger.

Bump outs, slide outs, and ”tip outs” existed in the early manufactured home era too.  But they were largely supplanted by the advent of multi-sectional so-called “double-wides” and “triple-wides.”

ClassicDeRoseIndustriesMobileHomeManufactruredHousingIndustryDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews_001

The images of classic ads and reports above and below, all found on Pinterest and are sourced as noted.

TrailerHouseMobileHomeManufacturedHomeFactoryBuiltHousingEvolution101MHProNews-MHLivingNews

These images provide several insights relevant to the manufactured housing industry today. Consider these bullets:

DoubleDeckerMobileHome10WideVintagePrincessOldMobileHomesTrailManufacturedHousingIndustryDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews422GoBigTrotwoodResdientialMobileHomesWithBumpOutSlideOutClassicMobileHomeManufacturedHousingIndustryDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews412x1517

  • Mobile homes – housing units on frames built prior to June 15, 2976 – were statistically more accepted then than manufactured homes are today. There’s an open question on why, which the Urban Institute, this publication and others have asked (for more on UI, and that question, click the related reports, below.)
  • Mobile homes had greater diversity than there is found in manufactured homes today.
  • Mobile homes had more manufacturers by far than there are found in the manufactured home industry today.
  • Mobile home leaders organized and promoted the creation of the HUD Code, following highly public scandals with substandard homes built by a few producers that quality builders didn’t want to be associated with. The HUD Code grew out of a desire to set construction standards, safety and energy standards for manufactured homes that would give consumers confidence, while avoiding the placement hassles that have sadly become so common today.

The history of the mobile home and manufactured home (MH) industry is fading, and that is problematic.

Because without an accurate industry history, a complete understanding of just how important this type of housing used to be, and how it helped create affordability then – and could again today – holds valuable insights.

Prior to the HUD Code, HUD studied factory home building – “industrialized housing” – with enthusiasm. What happened to that enthusiasm since the creation of the HUD Code?

Will Secretary Carson – who praised HUD Code manufactured homes when Senator Tillis’ question promoted a response – fuel a rebirth of that embrace by HUD of reasonable regulations that help promote practical housing solutions?

How many in government – or industry – today realize that when the industry had a wealth of producers, there were also a far wider variety of styles, types, innovations and models that industry contraction has arguably practically cut off?

More such factory home producers also yielded more acceptance, because each producer were naturally marketing their product, as the story and ads reflect.

 

About De Rose – It’s Worth Noting…

Vic De Rose, an attorney who was jointly recommended by the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) and the Manufactured Housing Association for Regulatory Reform (MHARR) is from the family whose name the De Rose Industries of yesteryear recalls.   De Rose has insights on factory-home building that the vast majority of the population – including most regulators – do not have.

The De Rose ad touts the message, “Move. Open. Live.”  It’s quality, affordable housing in a hurry, as popular performer and manufactured home owner Kid Rock observed in an interview last year.

SenatorJoeDonnellySupportVicDeRoseJDManufacturedHouisngIndustryDailyBusinessNewsMHProNewsVictorAnthonyDeRoseDeRoseLawFirmPhotoDailyBusinessNewsManufacturedHousingIndustryMHProNews

HUD has been silent on the subject of who is going to replace Pam Danner.  There is speculation that an announcement could take place later this month. If that’s so, it may be a troubling signal for the industry if it takes place in conjunction with a planned appearance by Secretary Carson with MHI’s Las Vegas event.  “We Provide, You Decide.” © ## (News, analysis and commentary.)

Related Reports:

HUD Secretary Ben Carson and Senator Thom Tillis Discuss Affordable Housing and Manufactured Homes, Video

“Po-Dunk” Performer Kid Rock, Eyes Senate Run, Makes Manufactured Home Living Hip

Documented Results from Manufactured Housing Industry Leadership

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

SoheylaKovachManufacturedHomeLivingNewsManufacturedHousingIndustryDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews-Submitted by Soheyla Kovach to the Daily Business News for MHProNews.com.

Soheyla is a managing member of LifeStyle Factory Homes, LLC, the parent company to MHProNews, and MHLivingNews.com.

“I need to report a stolen house!” Couple Wants PreFab Home Returned

February 6th, 2018 Comments off

KTRKHoustonPreFabShownOutOfLevelButVideoReflectsTheHomeIsLevelDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

It’s a problem pretty unique to factory-built housing.

 

It’s happened occasionally in the U.S. before, as the link below reflects.

Stop, Manufactured Home “Thief”

A Houston couple wants their 20x 30 prefab vacation home returned to them, says KTRK.

MadisonvilleTXStolenPrefabhomeDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

Jo and Lonnie Harrison told Eyewitness News said they bought the 10-acre property with a prefab home already on site last year. The property where the home was in Madisonville, Texas.


If you spotted a one-bedroom, one-bathroom home with a green roof and wood siding being moved down the road recently near that area, law enforcement would love to hear from you.

Note, the two videos are somewhat different depictions of the same apparent criminal incident.

They visit the area to escape the problems found in a busy city. They last drove up to their property in early November.

The report doesn’t mention if the home was insured.  ## (News, analysis, fact-checks, and commentary.)

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“Global” Domination Plan Announced by Robbie Antonio, Cutting Edge-Factory Designer/Builder

February 2nd, 2018 Comments off

HederaKennethCobonpueRevolutionPreCraftedPropertiesDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews410When the Daily Business News first began doing periodic reports on Revolution Precrafted Properties, the Trump family had some interests in their operation.

For the purposes of this update on their star-studded designs and plans, we’ve not delved into that aspect of their business at all.

But that previously reported Trump-connection is mentioned in part because factory-built housing professionals ought to know that the person in the Oval Office at 1600 Pennsylvania Ave. in Washington, D.C. arguably has a stronger understanding of PreFab homes than most – if not all – of his predecessors.

 

 

Similarly, Vice President Mike Pence has – per MHProNews sources – a strong grasp of HUD Code manufactured homes. For example, VP Pence understands and uses the correct terminology, is what the Daily Business News has been told, and observed.

From federal public officials, that’s refreshing.

Then there is HUD Secretary, Dr. Ben Carson, who has personally met with both MHARR and MHI.

Secretary Carson – per sources and his own published statements – is a strong advocate of free enterprise solutions.

Secretatry Carson believes that government can play a positive role, but isn’t able to solve every problem. Thus, a mix of private and public-sector actions, working together within their respective spheres, can do more than government acting alone is able to achieve.

The Trump Administration’s demonstrated desire to roll back “useless” and “self-destructive”  regulations, and more recently, cut taxes, are widely known.

 

It is ushering in a period of growth that hasn’t been seen since the housing crash of 2008.

 

Against that professional, economic, political, and regulatory backdrop, the update on Revolution Precrafted Properties is timely.

From a series of recent statements from Revolution Precrafted to the Daily Business News,  we’ll flesh out this update, which includes links to some of our prior reports.

This “unicorn” – a term meaning a startup company valued at over $1 billion – is disrupting Asia, and has its sites set on the world.

The Daily Business News continues to provide updates,

  • because it’s trade news,
  • and as a reminder to industry professionals not to be complacent.

Other nation’s are advancing their versions of prefab construction.

 

Ikea for Homebuilding? Revolution Precrafted Eyes Unicorn Status

American business and governments at all levels ought to take the necessary steps to tap the domestic opportunities.

Survey Top 2017 PreFab, Modular, Tiny and 3D Printed Housing News Stories

Other prefab builders from Asia, Europe, and the Americas have their sights set upon the U.S. market.  Even some African operations are exploring how they can tap the need for over 8 million affordable housing units that the United States currently requires.

 

Revolution Precrafted, the first Philippine “Unicorn,” Sets Sight on Global Stage

prefabhomeinstalledintwodaysaspartofparisshowcreditrobbieantoniodesignbloomrevolution-postedtodailybusinessnewsmhpronewsmhlivingnews

Robbie Antonio. Credit: Design Bloom & Revolution Precrafted Properties.

The Philippines found its first unicorn in 2017, when Revolution Precrafted, a provider of prefabricated properties – homes, condos, pavilions, hotels, among others – raised an undisclosed Series B funding round that valued the company at over $1 billion,” per Deal Street Asia.

RobbieAntonioModularHome_forbes-postedDailyBusinessNews-MHProNews

Revolution Precarfted, Forbes.

Antonio, the youngest to feature in Forbes’ 2017 list of the 50 richest people in the Philippines, spoke to this portal about Revolution Precrafted’s business model, expansion plans, and his company’s recognition as the country’s first unicorn,” Deal Street said.

HederaKennethCobonpueRevolutionPreCraftedPropertiesDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

 

Revolution Precrafted Pushes “Design Democratization”

Revolution’s concept is to bring high end design that is affordable to the masses.

With our vision of becoming the world’s largest supplier of homes, Revolution Precrafted is using technology to reimagine how a home is built. We don’t own land, we sell globally, and our homes are built and sold within months instead of years. But more than being a disruptor in the real-estate industry, Revolution Precrafted is all about design democratization,” said Jose Roberto Antonio, to the Business Mirror.

InstrumentalHomeMarmolRadzinerInteriorsKravitzDesignRevolutionPrecraftedPropertiesDailyBusiunessNewsMHProNews

Revolution’s call for a radical transformation in the existing order. In the local property sector, drastic change is being advocated by Revolution Precrafted, harnessing the power of technology and using precrafted technology,” per the Business Mirror.

For those who’ve forgotten, the 45th president while a business man, had a knack for spotting talent.  He clearly sees that in Robbie Antonio.  The Trumps are also known for class and quality.

DeisgnArtRobbieAntonioRevolutionPrecraftedPropertiesDailyBusinessNews

Antonio, beyond promoting his homes, is also promoting art.

Indeed, the Revolution Precrafted Properties concept is to make class, and high-end “artistic” design work available for prices that rival conventional building. ## (News, analysis, and commentary.)

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Apple, Amazon, Alphabet (Google), What Role Will Trillionaire Firms Play in Factory Built Housing?

January 27th, 2018 Comments off

AppleAmazonAlphabetGoogleFactoryBuiltHousingMHProNewsDailyBuisnessNews545

There’s a race on between the giant 3 As of the tech world.

Which will become the first trillion-dollar operation?

 

Analysts project that in about 12 months, Apple, Amazon, and Alphabet – the parent company to Google –  could hit the $1 trillion-dollar mark in valuation.

As the Daily Business News has previously reported, several of the tech giants are dabbling directly or indirectly in the world of factory-built housing.

In one sense, their realities give them little choice.

Housing for their workers is a problem. So, of course they will be focusing on solutions for those kinds of issues.

The composite Google search results from this morning – shown below – provides a snapshot of the realities.

1272018GoogleSearchHousingDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

With affordability an issue, as the housing news search above demonstrates, the tech giants are both compelled – and will be attracted into – the world of factory built homes.

  • When Apple announced that it will repatriate over $200 billion dollars due to tax reform,
  • with over 200 U.S. companies announcing bonuses and pay hikes to workers, that positively impact millions of Americans,
  • with President Trump’s Davos trip theme of “America is Open for Business” to the titans of international commerce being widely hailed, even by many in an often-critical press,
  • with consumer confidence at or near record highs,
  • with business confidence high,
  • with unemployment is at or near historic lows,
  • with immigration related issues moving towards – yes, hard to believe based upon the political theater – the first stage of resolutions,
  • and housing affordability and millions of housing units need,

those bullets all read like a road map for investors into the universal need for more quality, affordable housing.

That in turn has and will continue to lead investors into affordable factory-built housing. Which has already led some in tech into various kinds of prefab or modular housing, as we reported throughout 2017.

Meet the Modular Housing Builder Google Picked, and their “Industrial Cathedral”

Survey Top 2017 PreFab, Modular, Tiny and 3D Printed Housing News Stories

But others will “discover” that manufactured homes are very different than the stigmatized stereotype projects. That’s when the Sam Zell mantra – when others are going right, look left – will take root with a growing number of tech companies, hedge funds, and other deep pocket players searching for smart, sustainable value.

 

Private Equity Fund Grabbing 2 PreFab Home Builders

Given the fact that:

  • production backlogs of HUD Code manufactured homes are several months deep,
  • new plants are scheduled to come online,
  • manufactured housing – which outsells modular, as the example from Skyline below reflects – will doubtlessly get its share of the investment pie.
OverviewSkylineCombinationSkylineChampionConferenceCallPowerPointDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews1.25.2018p8

83 percent of Skyline’s production, per the graphic above, is from HUD Code manufactured homes. 9 percent is from modular homes. The other 8 percent are categorized as “park models,’ which some would see as similar to ‘tiny houses.’ Learn more, at this link here.

 

Housing, Housing, Housing…

The latest announced shakeup at HUD is a signal, Daily Business News’ sources tell us, that the Trump Administration is recognizing the potential, importance and value of manufactured housing in the mix of the nation’s total housing outlook.

Keep in mind that Vice President Mike Pence is from Indiana, which is the ‘birthplace’ of manufactured homes.  Sources there tell MHProNews that VP Pence understands HUD code homes – even our industry’s lingo – far better than most politicos.

SteveDukeLMHATheTerminologyMattersBecausetheTerminologyDefinesTheConstructionStandardsDailyBusinessNewsMHProNewsMHLivingNews1

http://www.mhmarketingsalesmanagement.com/blogs/daily-business-news/your-words-matter-proper-terminology-for-factory-built-homes/

As MHLivingNews reported during the campaign, one of President Trump’s family businesses – building – has direct exposure to high-end prefabs.

So the foundation for a federal policy more embracing of factory-built homes exists.

These are among the reasons why MHProNews early, loudly, and proudly promoted Team Trump during and since the 2016 campaign.  The background and policy positions of the Trump/Pence ticket were clearly superior to those of Secretary Hillary Clinton.  2017 and early 2018 economic news has proven that to be an accurate assessment.

12ReasonsEducatedIranianAmericanWomanSupportsDonaldTrumpPostedMastheadBlogMHProNews954x846

While the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) paid for two pro-Clinton speakers in the closing days before the 2016 election, MHProNews and the Kovach family supported Donald J. Trump’s candidacy as the best for the industry, small business and hundreds of millions of Americans. One of those stories ended up on the president’s campaign website, plus on numerous news, conservative, and pro-Trump websites.

The Latest Big Deal…

The Skyline-Champion deal has and will cause more investors to take a new, fresh look at manufactured and modular homes.  As last night’s market report reflected, the stock has soared in the wake of the announcement.

Skyline – Insider Trade$, Institutional Owner Move$ – Plus Manufactured Housing Market Update$

The manufactured housing REITs and publicly traded companies that have land-lease communities have had a strong, steady performance, even in the face of the headwinds caused by the Obama-era Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB).

For a snapshot of the market impact, see the links from last night’s MH connected market report for the 1 Year Post-Election trends of the various companies the Daily Business News tracks better and in more detail than anyone else in the manufactured housing industry’s trade media.

Big Toe in the Water…

While it’s a arguably a pittance to start, Fannie Mae’s and Freddie Mac’s toe into the manufactured home chattel lending waters has drawn headlines, and that also means, investors’ eyes too.

FHFA Publishes Fannie Mae’s and Freddie Mac’s Underserved Markets Plans for Duty to Serve (DTS) Program

England’s financial services giant Legal and General has taken a direct dive into modular housing.  Plus L&G has reported investments in U.S. based Cavco Industries (CVCO), the current #3 producer of HUD Code manufactured homes.

Capital has and will seek ways to be deployed in areas of opportunity.  Housing may not be quite as sexy as tech, AI and self-driving vehicles for some.  But it very much fits the mold of a market that is already attracting new capital, and is poised to draw in even more.

The chart posted below is a reminder of the tremendous upside opportunities for manufactured housing, within the broader conventional housing market.

 

The list of promising indicators are so numerous, that a book is needed, not an article.

Thus this post is designed to provide a flavor of known facts, trends, and links to more details about the dynamics behind it all.

Investors, Investors…

Investors are reaching out to and researching MHProNews and MHLivingNews – directly and indirectly.  Why?  Because they find these to be a superior resource for their research.  The same can be said about public officials.

Beyond messages and conversations, website and third-party statistics provide insights of why these sister-trade-media-platforms are well received by the public, professionals, and politicos alike.

“Controversial Topics” Exist in Part as Answers to Tough Questions from Outsiders Looking at HUD Code Manufactured Homes

The controversial topics that cause some in MHVille angst, are in fact a necessary part of the industry’s reality check.

They answer questions that investors and industry pros alike are posing.

The articles linked herein take a deeper dive into some of the related topics.

Manufactured housing underwent a major shakeup after the industry’s downturn that began in 1998.

The Warren Buffett/Clayton/Vanderbilt/21st/MHI related articles are designed in part to answer a common question from investors.

Among the questions or lenders and investors?

For those who have seen and touched the product, “How is it that manufactured housing hasn’t already taken off?”

 

 

Interview videos with experts – such as the one above – help answer that question.

The video below helps answers concerns that arise from informed public officials.  The written reports that compliment those two and other videos we’ve produced over the years round out fact-based insights that intelligent investors, shoppers, and others want answers to; today.

 

 

The Powerful Insights from the Clayton Video Interview

The thumbnail link to the Kevin Clayton video interview has now been placed on the MHProNews home page.

 

 

That interview is akin to a road-map for the industry’s story in recent years in several ways.

Combined with our related reports, that interview video helps explain several of the dynamics on how and why so many in manufactured housing have struggled when it should be soaring. It explains why and how Clayton – via Berkshire and “the moat” – gobbled up such big pieces of the industry in a relatively short period of time.

Warren Buffett, “the Moat,” Manufactured Housing, Berkshire Hathaway, Clayton Homes, 21st Mortgage, Vanderbilt, Wells Fargo, NAI…

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

The Clayton interview and related report – linked above – also plainly states what the billionaires and the billion-dollar corporations want to know.

Namely, what must others do to be successful in a sustainable way in manufactured housing?

 

Study!  Research!  Facts! Expert Guidance! Understanding! 

Warren Buffett’s success, as Kevin Clayton mentioned, is due in part to the Berkshire Hathaway chairman’s studious ‘professorial’ approach, and ongoing research.

The advantage Buffett has wielded is understanding.

Understanding is what reduces risk, says Buffett, and can lead to maximum opportunities.

The Alan Amy and Mike Harrison videos each make or underscore points that the factory-built housing industry’s current and incoming professionals must grasp.

They are?

  • Alan Amy states the obvious truth that is hiding in plain sight. Manufactured housing is the future. That’s why people like Buffett or real estate/investment mogul Sam Zell are in the business, and why they continue to try to increase their presence.

 

  • Mike Harrison is one of several possible examples of how quickly manufactured housing can be used to develop – or redevelop – properties with hundreds of homes, in a short time-frame.

 

While MHI’s strategic initiative will draw some attention, what is already known about it is typical of their work.  They’re behind, not ahead.

Part of the evidence is Barry Noffsinger with Credit Human fine job of explaining for MHProNews reader/viewers almost a year ago several of the same points – in several ways, better – and certainly for less money.

 

 

The irony is that “the moat” -building Berkshire boys are growing at a slower pace than the industry at large is. That’s based upon their own and MHI’s data.

Further, if you listen to Kevin Clayton’s video and look at their current number of retail locations, one must draw the conclusion that they reduced the number of retail locations in recent years by about 100.

While reducing many of their own retail centers, Clayton Homes purchased others from independents. Among those purchased by Clayton, were operations our consulting side had involvement with.  Most of their profits aren’t from retail, they are from finance.

Facts simply are. None of those are slams.  Rather, they are reality-checks that are precisely the kinds of insights that investors and professionals alike ought to crave.

Clayton arguably would be doing better – and certainly the industry at large would be doing better – if they had not killed off/forced out hundreds of competing companies, as “the Moat” article above lays out and links up in more detail.  Keep in mind that IBISWorld/The Atlantic projected that it would occur.  So these are not mere opinions, they are observable realities that objective researchers will uncover if they but look.

Those researchers are looking here and on MHLivingNews.

Our upcoming exclusive focus group videos and reports continue to build on the body of evidence that manufactured housing is the future, and can routinely yield happy home owners.

So, while there is a certain ‘tension’ between the elephant-in-the-room (Berkshire’s manufactured housing units, the rest of the industry and outsiders looking in); the behavior of the Omaha/Knoxville/MHI axis could be a case study as to why anti-trust (anti-monopoly) laws exist in the first place.

MH Resistance – Unmasking, Demystifying, Manufactured Housing Industry’s Roadblocks

Anti-trust laws exist because it is overall bad for business, bad for consumers and bad for the economy at large — even if it may seem to specifically benefit a given ‘trust.’

Faster Growth Outside of the Giants

Independent producers, such as Sunshine Homes, have been growing at more than double pace of Clayton and Cavco.

Publisher Rebuked! Doubting Doctor, Skeptic Stunned!

Independent retailers and selling communities – such as New Durham Estates and others – are growing at a far faster pace than the industry ‘leaders.’

One takeaway is clear.

Free enterprise works when its allowed to work.

Taking the foot off the regulatory break – a foot that Buffett and others helped put and keep in office with President Barack Obama – will naturally be good for business.

While people can hate or love his tweets, President Trump – the builder/entertainer/communicator – is reopening America for business.

Housing Hunger…a Necessity That Must Be Fixed

Realtors are hungry for more affordable inventory.

Realtor’s website joined Bloomberg, Fox and HousingWire in 2015 in proclaiming the role that manufactured homes need to make in the nation’s housing supply.

Bloomberg, HousingWire, Realtor and Fox all suggest Manufactured Homes as Important Solution for Affordable Housing in America

MHI continues to communicate problematic narratives to Washington (e.g.: stressing manufactured housing as predominantly “rural housing” is arguably one of several tactical/strategic errors they’ve made for years).

But the reality of MH being successfully used in urban and suburban settings has been a theme that MHLivingNews and MHProNews have spotlighted for years.

EricBelksyManufacturedHousingIndustryManufacuredHomeManufacturedHousingInstituteResearchDataAffordbleHousingMHProNewsDailyBuisnessNews575

Appealing Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) Marketing, Finance Booklet Reviewed

In the pre-MHI president and CEO, Richard “Dick” Jennison era, MHI’s staff were far better at grasping and pointing to those urban and suburban uses.  See the report, linked above.

Until those within and outside of MHVille fully grasp the amazing benefits of the ‘two great laws‘ already on federal books that could benefit manufactured housing, the industry will not reach its potential.

But the reverse is true.  Applying those two great laws are part of what the savvy players are banking on.

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

Only Patient Research, Sufficient Resources and Expertise Will Sustainably Succeed

It’s a complex industry at first.

Warren Buffett’s Political Payoff$, THIPS, and Manufactured Housing

There are many moving parts.

The politics of the industry and its associations are not instantly grasped.

Too many within the industry’s own ranks are not clear on just how great the upside potential truly is.

None of those claims should be construed as a slam. They are demonstrably true, as sources tell us or admit.

But the reason that the latest ‘big deal’ – Skyline Champion – is a signal to:

  • investors,
  • housing/policy advocates,
  • public officials and
  • those in the industry

is precisely the reasons why the tech giants and billions being unleashed in the America economy will attract billions of investor dollars into factory-built housing.

While no one can say how many billion that will be, the math is clear.

For those who understand or learn about the HUD Code manufactured home industry’s two already existent great laws, it ought to be obvious.

Manufactured homes are, as Alan Amy wisely said, the housing of the future.

Some might call all of the above our opinion.

But it’s the view from a veteran of the industry, not just a ‘reporter.’  That combination of veteran and consulting experiences, combined with our daily research and reports places us in that enviable Masthead perch.

 

 

It’s a fact. You can see farther from atop the Masthead than you can from the deck of the ship. It’s not bragging if it’s true.

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By L. A. “Tony” Kovach.

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

Both are #1 in their categories.

For consulting and business development, other professional services, click here.

Kovach is one of the most endorsed and recommended MH industry professionals in all of manufactured housing.

Oil and Manufactured Housing, 3 Charts Spotlight Facts, Trends, What, and Where Hot Spots Are

January 18th, 2018 Comments off

oilwelldrillingpixabaymanufacturedhousingdailybusinessnewsmhpronewsAnalysts and publicly-trade manufactured housing companies widely agree that growing job creation is a good thing for home sellers.

Sources also agree that when energy costs are lower, that tends to be good for manufacturing and business.

When consumers pay less for energy, they have more disposable income for other things; including housing.

So a recent report that U.S. shale oil output is surging could be yet another indicator of better times ahead in America.

 

 

 

 

mod mancamp williston nd associated press credit

Modular man-camp. near Williston, ND,. AP.

The three charts below sum it up, for where the hot-spots are.

ShaleProductionVsTotalOilProductionChart2018DailyBusinessNewsMHproNews

Per CNBC,

  • U.S. shale oil production will grow by 111,000 barrels a day to 6.55 million barrels a day in February, the U.S. Energy Information Administration forecast.
  • Output from the Permian Basin in Texas and New Mexico is seen rising by 76,000 barrels a day.
  • Growth from shale oil regions is driving a recovery in U.S. oil production.

AmericasShaleBasinProductionChart2018DailyBusinessNewsMHproNews

While energy, particularly oil, has often contributed to booms-and-busts for manufactured housing in a given area, as the shale technology evolves, the “plays” tend to be longer.

MAPLocationsAmericasShaleBasin2018DailyBusinessNewsMHproNews

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Soheyla, Tamas L. A. "Tony" Kovach family

Soheyla Kovach, with her son Tamas (center, pronounced “Tah Mash) and husband L. A. “Tony” Kovach, will all be at the 2018 Louisville Show. For a third party profile of the family and business, click here.

Submitted by Soheyla Kovach to the Daily Business News for MHProNews.com.