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RE Focused Economist Says, ‘Millions of Housing Units’ Needed

June 14th, 2019 No comments

 

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Mark Fleming, Ph.D serves as the chief economist for First American Financial Corporation.  He’s been popping up more on various business news shows, so the Daily Business News on MHProNews decided to share the flavor of Fleming’s economic and housing insights.

 

It ought to be one of those rally points for manufactured housing professionals who are thirsting for growth.

About Fleming, “Before joining First American, he developed insights and analytical products for CoreLogic, and property valuation models at Fannie Mae. Fleming graduated from the University of Maryland with a Master of Science and a doctorate in agricultural and resource economics and holds a Bachelor of Arts in economics from Swarthmore College. He lives and works in the Washington, D.C. area,” per his company’s website.

As the posted videos reflect, he’s telling business news sources on both sides of the left-right media divide that ‘millions of housing units’ are needed.

 

 

In that, he says some points that longer time-readers of MHProNews are familiar with.  The National Association of Realtor’s Chief Economist Lawrence Yun has said similarly.

 

 

More recently, HUD Secretary Carson has pointed specifically to manufactured homes, along with other forms of prefab and innovative housing techniques.

 

 

So, while Fleming hasn’t been laser focused on manufactured housing, the industry’s professionals and investors must think of themselves as broader ‘housing’ members.  In that context, the needs are tremendous.

Only factory building can achieve that, is what tech gurus – who are increasingly entering the factory-built housing market – have decided.

Why does Warren Buffett and Charlie Munger love housing? Because they know which way the market is going.

In this context, one must ask. How is it possible, with the needs so great, that manufactured housing is still selling at a lower level than 15 years ago?

 

BloombergShipmentProductionDataManufacturedHousingMHProNews2019-05-16_1057

 

Logic says there are only a few possibilities.

·        The industry’s ‘big boy’ leaders don’t know what they are doing. While we disagree with them on many things, we don’t buy that option, but it is a logic possibility.

·        The industry’s ‘big boy’ leaders and their puppet association are lazy, and are not willing to do what it takes.  Again, it’s a possibility, but not one that we think fits the facts.

·        The industry’s leaders want the industry to perform at a low level, intentionally. If so, why? A common concern is that underperformance allows big companies to acquire smaller firms at a discounted price.

 

Is there evidence for this?

One might start with the words of Richard ‘Dick’ Jennison, Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) own statement on camera, arguing for slow growth. 

 

 

What? During an affordable housing crisis?

It was such an outrageous comment that our publisher brought it to the attention of then MHI Chairman, Tim Williams, who is also the President and CEO of 21st Mortgage Corp. Williams told MHProNews that he would ‘talk to Dick.’

The following Louisville Show, Jennison then said – also capture on video – that the industry could achieve 500,000 new homes. That’s arguably true. But what has MHI done to achieve that level of production?

 

MHI CEO Dick Jennison’s Pledge – 500,000 New Manufactured Home Shipments

 

NAMHCO, cited in a report earlier today, broke from MHI, precisely because of a lack of performance.

 

MHCommunitiesOfAZNealTHaneyPresidentWhyTheyQuitManufacturedHousingInstituteMHIDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews600

What Haney’s statement reflects is the lack of credibility and effectiveness of MHI in their claims.

 

Frank and Dave,” controversial in their own right, nevertheless told their readers 2 weeks ago not to look to MHI for support for community owners, using these words.

 

 

In peeling back the layers of the onion in manufactured housing, in hindsight, the insight of Marty Lavin makes sense when he said the following.

 

FollowThe MoneyPayMoreAttentionToWhatPeopleDothanwhatTheySaySpySea72MartyLavinYachtManufacturedHousingINdustryProMHProNews

Ask yourself objectively. Do these Marty Lavin dictums apply with respect to MHI?

 

More pointed was Lavin – who is an MHI award winner – when he made the following statement.

 

SoTheAssociationMHIIsNotThereFortheIndustryUnlesstheinterestsoftheBigBoysJointheIndustry'sMartyLavinMHIAwardWinnerQuoteMHProNews

MHProNews looks at the facts, considers the sources, and follows the evidence. MHI earlier last year, and for years before, MHI routinely replied promptly to all inquiries. But since we’ve spotlighted the problems and concerns, they’ve gone silent. Why? If the facts are on their side, why not make offer a cogent explanation?

 

MHI has purportedly engaged in what Mark Weiss, the President and CEO of the Manufactured Housing Association for Regulatory Reform (MHARR) who referred to the industry’s post-production sector – which is MHI’s turf – as the “illusion of motion.”

 

“THE ILLUSION OF MOTION VERSUS REAL-WORLD CHALLENGES” – Spotlighted by Manufactured Home Industry Leader

 

That comment sent our publisher laughing at the apt, penetrating insight.  Keep MHI members busy, keep them going to meetings that are profit centers for MHI, per their own IRS Form 990s.  Feed them ‘housing alerts’ that led them to believe that they are making progress…

…but the acid test is the sales, shipment and production of new manufactured homes.  Those numbers don’t lie.

 

ManufacturedHousingAssocRegulatoryReformMHARRApril2019ProductionShipmentReportDailyBUsinessNewsMHproNews

 

Inept? Lazy? Or head fake with the goal of consolidating the industry into ever fewer hands?

 

 

Let’s not forget the 21st letter, Kevin Clayton video, and Warren Buffett letter, linked below.

 

SmokingGunEvidenceOfAntiTrustMonopolisticCollusionMoatClaytonHomesKevinClayton21stMortgageTimWilliamsWarrenBuffettMHLivingNewsMHProNews

In a series of direct quotes in context, a document from 21st Mortgage signed by Tim Williams, and video recorded comments by Kevin Clayton, these all line up to demonstrate how independent retailers, communities, and producers – among others – where purportedly harmed by action that could be deemed an antitrust violation. Why hasn’t Allen told his readers how that cost them money? https://www.manufacturedhomelivingnews.com/bridging-gap-affordable-housing-solution-yields-higher-pay-more-wealth-but-corrupt-rigged-billionaires-moat-is-barrier/

 

It makes the most logical case. Clayton, 21st, MHI, and MHI’s outside attorney – asked to address these concerns and allegations – routinely makes no on the record comment. 

Instead, they’ve put George F. (F?) Allen up as their purportedly incentivized attack dog and distraction surrogate.

When asked about claims from his own followers that have said Allen’s being compensated and rewarded by the big boys, Allen has no comment.

Millions of housing units are needed. Publicly traded MHI member companies own IR packets state that the industry is underperforming by historic standards.

Voices in Congress, per our sources, are wising up to the Omaha-Knoxville-Arlington ploy.

Voices in Congress, are already on the record going after high profile MHI members, including Clayton, 21st, and several large so-called ‘predatory’ community operators.

It’s not a pretty picture as to why the industry is underperforming. But the historical data – and the research by economists like Dr. Mark Fleming and others say that millions of homes are needed.

Tim Williams said it to MHProNews, and we’ve repeated it many times, because it was the truth – that they’ve arguably not followed. Every misleading report needs to be robustly responded to, as he said below.

 

TimWilliams21stMortgageCorpGoodArgumentsQuoteRespondEveryStoryDailyBusinessNewsMHproNews

 

MHI needs to push for enhanced preemption, a full implementation of the Duty to Serve mandated by law, and put the black hat behavior actors on notice.

Sources say, MHI can’t do it.  They’d lose Clayton and several big boy members, per those sources if they ever did such a thing.

Thus the need to expose the problem and the realities. Then the need for multiple layers of independent investigations, as publicly as possible.

There’s more in the links below.

 

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That’s today’s third episode of News Through the Lens of Manufactured Homes, and Factory-Built Housing,” © where “We Provide, You Decide.” © ## (News, analysis, and commentary.)

 

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Related Reports:

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Dueling Statements, NAMHCO, MHI, MHARR, Weigh In On Controversial MH Bill, “George Allen Pawn Gambit”

Investigating Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac Over Duty to Serve Manufactured Housing

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Speak No Evil, Only Evidence. Tunica Show, Feds, Clayton, 21st, MHI, MHARR, Public Debate, and You

March 23rd, 2019 Comments off

 

SpeakNoEvilOnlyEvidenceTunicaShowFedsClayton21stMHIMHARRPublicDebateYouDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

Anyone can allege anything. To heck with hyperbole or he said, she said. It’s evidence, documents, money trails, trend lines, and common-sense reasoning that are among the elements that ought to be considered by thinking professionals.

 

While most of manufactured housing’s bloggers, or other publishers, are blatant Omaha-Knoxville-Arlington kiss-ups, the Daily Business News on MHProNews has investigated issues and asked the penetrating questions that most others were unwilling to ask.  If others knew, why didn’t the openly say, and give evidence, as we have done on MHProNews and MHLivingNews?

‘Allegations,’ yes, because in America a person, organization, or business is considered innocent until proven guilty, enters a plea, or into a civil settlement agreement.

The elements of the case for rigging the manufactured housing market has been systematically laid out in dozens of articles, so now it is time for next steps.  It is time to act.

 

 

The Invitation – 3 Session Special Tunica Event

Thursday afternoon March 28, 2019. Location in Tunica to be announced, because the response indicates that we need a larger meeting room than was originally anticipated.

 

standing-room-only-2014-louisville-manufactured-housing-show-seminar-room-masthead-blog-mhpronews-com-

Standing Room Only presentations organized by L. A. “Tony” Kovach and MHProNews.

 

Session 1. The header on the email below reflects some of those invited to session one at Tunica. If MHProNews, our documents, quotes from Warren Buffett, Kevin Clayton, Tim Williams, Nathan Smith, Richard ‘Dick’ Jennison, Lesli Gooch, Rick Robinson, and our other sources are wrong, let the fine folks at Knoxville and Arlington and their associates debunk the clams.  They can bring their attorneys. We have offered an independent moderator, one that HUD can suggest.

 

They have the right to remain silent, but they also have the right to speak. We hope they will speak on the record, we will too.  If they can prove us wrong in public, that’s their right.  If we can demonstrate that the evidence is as we’ve suggested, it would only make sense for them to duck out once more.

 

EmailKevinClaytonHUDTimWilliamsMarch222019

These are some of those who have been invited to attend. We blocked out the specific email address, to respect their professional privacy. But the company or organizational names are shown on the above.

 

Time will tell if they accept or not. After all, they and/or their team mates will be in Tunica. Either way, the evidence will be laid out and discussed publicly. Attendees can ask questions at the end of that session. RSVP.

 

 

Session 2 – Organizing a new, ethical, pro-growth post-production association.

This will be historic. Some manufactured home communities association broke from MHI in 2017, saying in their own words they were tired of MHI’s lack of performance. In 2018 they formally launched that new national trade group for community owners.

At MHI itself, the NCC was launched by a fairly small group of professionals.  The same was true for MHARR.

It doesn’t take hundreds of people to start this common-sense effort.  They are welcome to come, but it only requires the few, the forward thinking, those that see that the trend-lines can only end one way if corrective measures don’t occur.

That said, if early indications coming into MHProNews prove accurate, a far better turnout appears to be shaping up for next Thursday afternoon in Tunica. Are you coming from outside of the Tunica market area? RSVP and come.

 

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Turnout for events promoted by MHProNews are routinely strong.

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To report a news tip, click the image above or send an email to iReportMHNewsTips@mhmsm.com – To help us spot your message in our volume of email, please put the words RSVP Tunica in the subject line.

Session 3. Independent Producers of HUD Code Manufactured Homes. MHI members, MHARR members, and non-aligned builders are going to meet in this session.

To learn more as to why you would want to come, please see the new report, linked below.  It could pay rich dividends, even for now former industry professionals to attend. Read the article below to understand how.

 

Kevin, Tim, your buddies, and attorneys?  Will you grace us with your public responses to the allegations that so many have raised? Either way, the case will be made for those who come to Session 1.

Session 2 and Session 3 are solution and next steps sessions.  That’s manufactured home “Industry News, Tips and Views Pros Can Use,” © Be among those who come and see. ## (News, analysis, and commentary.)

 

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NOTICE: You can get our ‘read-hot’ industry-leading emailed headline news updates, at this link here. You can join the scores who follow us on Twitter at this link. Connect on LinkedIn here.

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SoheylaKovachDailyBusinessNewsMHProNewsMHLivingNewsSubmitted 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.

 

 

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Warren Buffett’s Annual Report to Berkshire Hathaway Shareholders, Clayton Homes and Manufactured Housing

February 26th, 2018 Comments off

WarrenBuffettBerkshireHathaway2017AnnualLetterReportShareholdersClaytonHomes21stMortgageVanderbiltNYTimesDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

When examining an industry or an issue, such as the manufactured housing and regulations that impact an industry, common sense dictates that one spend time looking at the proverbial elephants in the room.

In manufactured housing, one elephant in the room is arguably Warren Buffett, Berkshire Hathaway and companies such as Clayton Homes, 21st Mortgage and Vanderbilt Mortgage and Finance.

Using their own annual report, Buffett’s copyrighted document says Clayton has about 49 percent of the industry’s production.

Other elephants in the room?  Financing (capital) and regulations must surely be among them.

Consider this.

  • The Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI),
  • the Manufactured Housing Association for Regulatory Reform (MHARR),
  • state associations,
  • and thousands of industry professionals and investors would – if prodded – likely say that federal, state and local regulations are an important impacts that influence their businesses.
  • Most if not all would all likely admit the importance that capital and financing plays in the industry.

The timing of the Berkshire Hathaway annual report is noteworthy.  It comes at about the same times as the deadline for public comments that the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) has made for the top-down-review of the manufactured housing program it regulates. Those comments to HUD are due at 11:59 PM tonight, 2.26.2018.

Federal Manufactured Housing Program Review Comments Due Next Week, 2.26.2018

The entire Buffett/Berkshire annual letter and report are found as a download at the end of this report, provided by the Daily Business News under fair use guidelines.

Let’s look at some notable quotes from the annual letter and report.  Those facts will be followed by analysis of the quotes and data.

 

Notable Facts and Quotes

Keep in mind that while Clayton Homes is in the housing business, Berkshire lists it under financial services. From the Berkshire Hathaway Inc. 2017 annual report, page 13 (hereafter, just annual report), copyright 2018 © by Warren E. Buffett, page K21:

 

Finance and Financial Products

Berkshire’s finance and financial products activities include an integrated manufactured housing and finance business, transportation equipment leasing and furniture leasing. Berkshire’s finance and financial products businesses employ approximately 25,600 people in the aggregate. Information concerning these activities follows.”

Clayton Homes

Clayton Homes, Inc. (“Clayton”), headquartered near Knoxville, Tennessee, is a vertically integrated housing company utilizing manufactured, modular and site built methods. Clayton’s homes are marketed in 48 states through a network of over 2,000 retailers, including 353 company-owned home centers and 118 subdivisions. Home finance and insurance products are offered through its subsidiaries primarily to purchasers of manufactured and modular homes.

In 2015, Clayton acquired its first site builder and has since added four additional site builders. Clayton plans to continue to seek acquisitions that fit its business model. Clayton delivered approximately 49,000 homes in 2017 at various price points. Clayton competes based on price, service, delivery capabilities and product performance and considers the ability to make financing available to retail purchasers a factor affecting the market acceptance of its products.

Clayton’s financing programs support company-owned home centers and select independent retailers. Proprietary loan underwriting guidelines have been developed and include ability to repay calculations, including debt to income limits, consideration of residual income and credit score requirements, which are considered in evaluating loan applicants. Currently, approximately 70% of the loan originations are home-only loans and the remaining 30% have land as additional collateral. The average down payment is approximately 15%, which may be from cash, trade or land equity. Certain loan types require an independent third-party valuation; additionally, if land is involved in the transaction it generally is independently appraised in order to establish the value of the land only or the home and the land as a package. Originated loans are at fixed rates and for fixed terms. Loans outstanding include non-government originations, bulk purchases of contracts and notes from banks and other lenders. Clayton also provides inventory financing to certain independent retailers and community operators and services housing contracts and notes that were not purchased or originated. The bulk contract purchases and servicing arrangements may relate to the portfolios of other lenders or finance companies, governmental agencies, or other entities that purchase and hold housing contracts and notes. Clayton also acts as an agent on physical damage insurance policies, homebuyer protection plan policies and other programs.”

From annual report, page K-49:

 

Manufactured housing and finance

Clayton Homes’ revenues were $5.0 billion in 2017, an increase of $780 million (18%) compared to 2016. The revenues increase was primarily due to higher home sales, attributable to an increase in overall unit sales (9%) and higher average prices. The increase in average prices was primarily due to sales mix changes, which reflected increases in site built home sales, a relatively new business for Clayton. Site built homes include higher land content and unit prices tend to be higher, although gross sales margin rates are typically lower than manufactured homes. Interest and financial services revenues increased 2% in 2017 compared to 2016.

Pre-tax earnings increased $21 million (2.8%) in 2017 compared to 2016. Pre-tax earnings in 2017 from manufacturing, retailing and site built activities increased, while earnings from finance activities declined slightly from 2016. Earnings in 2017 also included a gain from a legal settlement, offset by increased employee healthcare, technology, marketing and other expenses. A significant portion of Clayton Homes’ earnings are generated from lending activities, which in recent years benefitted from relatively low delinquency rates and loan losses and from low average interest rates on borrowings. As of December 31, 2017, Clayton Homes’ installment loan portfolio was approximately $13.7 billion.

Revenues increased $654 million (18%) in 2016 compared to 2015, attributable to a 30% increase in revenues from home sales, primarily due to a 25% increase in units sold and product mix changes. Interest and other financial service income increased 1.8% from 2015. Pre-tax earnings increased $38 million (5.4%) compared to 2015. Earnings benefitted from increased home sales and improved manufacturing and retailing operating margins, partly offset by lower earnings from lending and financial services and increased insurance losses.”

 

More Notable Quotes

From the annual report, page 5.

Let’s move now to bolt-on acquisitions. Some of these were small transactions that I will not detail. Here is an account, however, of a few larger purchases whose closings stretched between late 2016 and early 2018.

Clayton Homes acquired two builders of conventional homes during 2017, a move that more than doubled our presence in a field we entered only three years ago. With these additions – Oakwood Homes in Colorado and Harris Doyle in Birmingham – I expect our 2018 site built volume will exceed $1 billion.

Clayton’s emphasis, nonetheless, remains manufactured homes, both their construction and their financing. In 2017 Clayton sold 19,168 units through its own retail operation and wholesaled another 26,706 units to independent retailers. All told, Clayton accounted for 49% of the manufactured-home market last year.

That industry-leading share – about three times what our nearest competitor did – is a far cry from the 13% Clayton achieved in 2003, the year it joined Berkshire. Both Clayton Homes and PFJ are based in Knoxville, where the Clayton and Haslam families have long been friends. Kevin Clayton’s comments to the Haslams about the advantages of a Berkshire affiliation, and his admiring comments about the Haslam family to me, helped cement the PFJ deal.”

From the annual report, page 13.

A final lesson from our bet: Stick with big, “easy” decisions and eschew activity.”

 

Quotes and Insights, According to Rupert Hargreaves, GuruFocus on Nasdaq 3.28.2017

Rupert Hargreaves in a column entitled “Warren Buffett and the Importance of Moats,” wrote: “Buffett himself only invests in such businesses [those with moats], but the problem is he’s never really set out exactly what he’s looking for in the best moats.”

Hargraves compiled this list of Buffett quotes on moats.

But all the time, if you’ve got a wonderful castle, there are people out there who are going to try and attack it and take it away from you. And I want a castle that I can understand, but I want a castle with a moat around it.” – Warren Buffett.

From the 2000 Berkshire annual meeting:

So we think in terms of that moat and the ability to keep its width and its impossibility of being crossed as the primary criterion of a great business. And we tell our managers we want the moat widened every year. That doesn’t necessarily mean the profit will be more this year than it was last year because it won’t be sometimes. However, if the moat is widened every year, the business will do very well. When we see a moat that’s tenuous in any way – it’s just too risky. We don’t know how to evaluate that. And, therefore, we leave it alone. We think that all of our businesses – or virtually all of our businesses — have pretty darned good moats.” – Warren Buffett.

“…I don’t want a business that’s easy for competitors. I want a business with a moat around it with a very valuable castle in the middle. And then I want the duke who’s in charge of that castle to be honest and hard-working and able. And then I want a big moat around the castle, and that moat can be various things.” – Warren Buffett.  

“…Most people will assume the service is fairly identical among companies, or close enough, so they’re going to do it on cost, so I gotta be the low-cost producer. That’s my moat. To the extent my costs get further lower than the other guy, I’ve thrown a couple of sharks into the moat.”  – Warren Buffett. 

Note, these quotes may reference other products and services.  But industry readers and researchers must keep in mind that these are principles that Buffett himself and his partner, Vice-Chairman Charlie Munger, have applied to all of their investments.

“…Things are all the time changing that moat in one direction or another. Ten years from now you can see the difference. Our managers of the businesses we run, I’ve got one message to them, which is to widen the moat. And we want to throw crocodiles and sharks and everything else, gators, I guess, into the moat to keep away competitors. And that comes about through service, it comes about through quality of product, it comes about through cost, it comes about sometimes through patents, it comes about through real estate location.” – Warren Buffett. 

 

Other Sources and Quotes on Buffett about Competition and the Moat

WarrenBuffett.com says, In business, I look for economic castles protected by unbreachable moats.” – Warren Buffett.

In Charlie Munger on Moats First of the Four Essential Filters, “

1.    A business with a moat,

2.    A business that can be understood by the investor,

3.    Management in place with integrity and talent, and

4.    A business that can be bought at an attractive price that gives an attractive margin of safety.” – Charlie Munger, Berkshire Vice-Chairman.

Stocks of companies selling commodity-like products should come with a warning label: ‘Competition may prove hazardous to human wealth.’” – Warren Buffett, per Sure Dividend. 

There are more such quotes about Buffett and the Berkshire philosophy, but perhaps among the most relevant for the industry are those from Kevin Clayton in the video linked in the report below.

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

 

Analysis and Commentary 

Against that backdrop, lets return to this year’s letter.

Starting bottom of page 8, top of page 9 of the annual letter.

I have told you several times about HomeServices, our growing real estate brokerage operation. Berkshire backed into this business in 2000 when we acquired a majority interest in MidAmerican Energy (now named Berkshire Hathaway Energy).  MidAmerican’s activities were then largely in the electric utility field, and I originally paid little attention to HomeServices.

But, year-by-year, the company added brokers and, by the end of 2016, HomeServices was the second-largest brokerage operation in the country – still ranking, though, far behind the leader, Realogy.

In 2017, however, HomeServices’ growth exploded. We acquired the industry’s third-largest operator, Long and Foster; number 12, Houlihan Lawrence; and Gloria Nilson. With those purchases we added 12,300 agents, raising our total to 40,950. HomeServices is now close to leading the country in home sales, having participated (including our three acquisitions pro-forma) in $127 billion of “sides” during 2017.

To explain that term, there are two “sides” to every transaction; if we represent both buyer and seller, the dollar value of the transaction is counted twice.

Despite its recent acquisitions, HomeServices is on track to do only about 3% of the country’s homebrokerage business in 2018. That leaves 97% to go. Given sensible prices, we will keep adding brokers in this most fundamental of businesses.”

  • The 97 percent statement about housing, isn’t that arguably a clearly monopolistic phrase? 
  • Or Buffett’s comments about Clayton growing from 13% in 2003 to 49% by 2017 – in the light of the quotes above and linked, isn’t it also part of a monopolistic pattern? 

For those who compete with Buffett, you must think years ahead, because Buffett and his unit managers do. 

It is worth recalling that Fleetwood was once a powerful presence in manufactured home production and retail – duking it out in the late 1990s, and early 2000s – with Champion for the top spot. But after the “smoking gun” incident, as Kevin Clayton noted in his own words in the video in the report linked further above, Fleetwood’s retail was acquired by Clayton. 

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

No doubt, in fitting with the Berkshire way, at a bargain price…

We Provide, You Decide.”  ©

Berkshire Chairman Warren Buffett’s annual letter to shareholders, and the Berkshire Hathaway annual report, are linked here as a download. ## (News, analysis, and commentary.)

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You can remain anonymous. Let us know if you want credit, or want to be off the record. To report a news tip, click the image above or send an email to iReportMHNewsTips@mhmsm.com – To help us spot your message in our volume of email, please put the words NEWS TIP in the subject line.

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

 

 

Lawsuits for Triple Damages – Anti-Trust, Anti-Monopoly Law, Manufactured Housing, and You

January 4th, 2018 Comments off

AntiTrustLegalGavelAntiMonopolyManufacturedHousingMHProNews

The Clayton Act also authorizes private parties to sue for triple damages when they have been harmed by conduct that violates either the Sherman or Clayton Act and to obtain a court order prohibiting the anticompetitive practice in the future,” says the Federal Trade Commission website page, further linked below.

Section 7 of the Clayton Act prohibits mergers and acquisitions where the effect “may be substantially to lessen competition, or to tend to create a monopoly,” per the same federal facts page.

 

The Sherman Act outlaws “every contract, combination, or conspiracy in restraint of trade,” and any “monopolization, attempted monopolization, or conspiracy or combination to monopolize.””

Long ago, the Supreme Court decided that the Sherman Act does not prohibit every restraint of trade, only those that are unreasonable. For instance, in some sense, an agreement between two individuals to form a partnership restrains trade, but may not do so unreasonably, and thus may be lawful under the antitrust laws.”

On the other hand, certain acts are considered so harmful to competition that they are almost always illegal.”

These include plain arrangements among competing individuals or businesses to fix prices, divide markets, or rig bids. These acts are “per se” violations of the Sherman Act; in other words, no defense or justification is allowed,” their overview page states.

The quotes above are highlights from the FTC text below, which is shared verbatim as follows for their complete context.

Note that after this section, there will be additional comments and links to information for those impacted or researching this high-profile topic.

The Antitrust Laws, Per the FTC

FederalTradeCommisionWikipediaDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews“Congress passed the first antitrust law, the Sherman Act, in 1890 as a “comprehensive charter of economic liberty aimed at preserving free and unfettered competition as the rule of trade.” In 1914, Congress passed two additional antitrust laws: the Federal Trade Commission Act, which created the FTC, and the Clayton Act. With some revisions, these are the three core federal antitrust laws still in effect today.

The antitrust laws proscribe unlawful mergers and business practices in general terms, leaving courts to decide which ones are illegal based on the facts of each case. Courts have applied the antitrust laws to changing markets, from a time of horse and buggies to the present digital age. Yet for over 100 years, the antitrust laws have had the same basic objective: to protect the process of competition for the benefit of consumers, making sure there are strong incentives for businesses to operate efficiently, keep prices down, and keep quality up.

Here is an overview of the three core federal antitrust laws.

The Sherman Act outlaws “every contract, combination, or conspiracy in restraint of trade,” and any “monopolization, attempted monopolization, or conspiracy or combination to monopolize.” Long ago, the Supreme Court decided that the Sherman Act does not prohibit every restraint of trade, only those that are unreasonable. For instance, in some sense, an agreement between two individuals to form a partnership restrains trade, but may not do so unreasonably, and thus may be lawful under the antitrust laws. On the other hand, certain acts are considered so harmful to competition that they are almost always illegal. These include plain arrangements among competing individuals or businesses to fix prices, divide markets, or rig bids. These acts are “per se” violations of the Sherman Act; in other words, no defense or justification is allowed.

The penalties for violating the Sherman Act can be severe. Although most enforcement actions are civil, the Sherman Act is also a criminal law, and individuals and businesses that violate it may be prosecuted by the Department of Justice. Criminal prosecutions are typically limited to intentional and clear violations such as when competitors fix prices or rig bids. The Sherman Act imposes criminal penalties of up to $100 million for a corporation and $1 million for an individual, along with up to 10 years in prison. Under federal law, the maximum fine may be increased to twice the amount the conspirators gained from the illegal acts or twice the money lost by the victims of the crime, if either of those amounts is over $100 million.

The Federal Trade Commission Act bans “unfair methods of competition” and “unfair or deceptive acts or practices.” The Supreme Court has said that all violations of the Sherman Act also violate the FTC Act. Thus, although the FTC does not technically enforce the Sherman Act, it can bring cases under the FTC Act against the same kinds of activities that violate the Sherman Act. The FTC Act also reaches other practices that harm competition, but that may not fit neatly into categories of conduct formally prohibited by the Sherman Act. Only the FTC brings cases under the FTC Act.

The Clayton Act addresses specific practices that the Sherman Act does not clearly prohibit, such as mergers and interlocking directorates (that is, the same person making business decisions for competing companies). Section 7 of the Clayton Act prohibits mergers and acquisitions where the effect “may be substantially to lessen competition, or to tend to create a monopoly.” As amended by the Robinson-Patman Act of 1936, the Clayton Act also bans certain discriminatory prices, services, and allowances in dealings between merchants. The Clayton Act was amended again in 1976 by the Hart-Scott-Rodino Antitrust Improvements Act to require companies planning large mergers or acquisitions to notify the government of their plans in advance. The Clayton Act also authorizes private parties to sue for triple damages when they have been harmed by conduct that violates either the Sherman or Clayton Act and to obtain a court order prohibiting the anticompetitive practice in the future.

In addition to these federal statutes, most states have antitrust laws that are enforced by state attorneys general or private plaintiffs. Many of these statutes are based on the federal antitrust laws.”

The above is quoted verbatim from the page, linked below.

https://www.ftc.gov/tips-advice/competition-guidance/guide-antitrust-laws/antitrust-laws

 FederalTradeCommissionWashingtonDCBuildingDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

 

Anti-Trust (Anti-Monopoly) Laws, Manufactured Housing, and You

During an affordable housing crisis, how is it possible that manufactured housing is doing so poorly?

MultipleReasonsExpectManufacturedHousingDoBetterThanSiteBuiltHousingEricBelskyEecDirJointCenterHousingStudiesHarvardUnivDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

At the time Belsky made this prediction, manufactured homes were selling over 250,000 new units per year. This year, MH won’t reach 40,000 of that total. What happened?

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

Was it a series of mishaps?  Or what is part of a plan, to allow the regulatory state to be used to crush many, so that those who built “the moat” could benefit?

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

Antitrust, or anti-monopoly laws exist, as the FTC said, because it harms businesses and consumers alike.

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

Are there reasons to think to think this may apply to manufactured housing?

That’s for a court to decide, and for attorneys who contemplate such a case to consider, and argue. That said, consider this.

Manufactured Housing Institute VP Revealed Important Truths on MHI’s Lobbying, Agenda

As the Daily Business News has previously reported, there have been thousands of companies that have closed or were acquired in the manufactured housing industry by larger operations. Was this the result of a plan, part of the moat strategy, of Warren Buffett led Berkshire Hathaway, as it applies to the manufactured housing industry?

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

There are certainly Democratic lawmakers who have raised this issue, and others, who have specifically called Clayton Homes and their Berkshire Hathaway sister companies of 21st Mortgage and Vanderbilt Mortgage, a ‘near monopoly.’

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

As MHProNews began reporting for almost a year, there are also those within the ranks of the industry, who have called out MHI – widely seen within and outside of the industry as dominated by Berkshire Hathaway – as a tool of Warren Buffett led brands.

CampaignForAccountabilityNearMonopolyRacismSteeringPredatoryLendingClaytonHomesVanderbilt21stBerkshireHathawayWarrenBuffettLogosManufacturedHousingMHProNews

Not because these reports are among the most read articles,
but because there are voices within and outside of MH that say that this matters,
and because readers thank MHProNews for “having the guts” to cover it on behalf of the independents and consumers – who allegedly have been, are being, or will be harmed – we’ve taken this issue on.

Duty To Serve, “Complete Waste of Time” per Tim Williams, CEO/21st Mortgage; POTUS Trump, Warren Buffett Insight$

Allegations like those noted in or linked from this article have been carefully examined, per sources to MHProNews, from within Berkshire Hathaway owned brands and from MHI.

Given that MHProNews has invited replies we would publish, why have they not done so?

Given the fact that MHProNews’ publisher has invited a public debate MHI performance and related issues, why hasn’t Gooch, their attorney Rick Robinson (who as an attorney, is essentially trained in debating), or Richard “Dick” Jennison taken up the invitation?  Such a debate could be done via a recorded video, so that the entire industry could see it.

Why has MHI ducked out on that? Why didn’t MHI’s communication professional, Patti Boerger, join the panel discussion on “engaging the media” she was invited to at Tunica in 2017?

Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) SVP Rick Robinson Ducks Serious Industry Questions in Deadwood

Such reporting is only possible because some have provided their keen insights, documents, insider information, or who have otherwise made these concerns and controversies publication possible.

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

When Doug Ryan at CFED (rebranded as Prosperity Now) leveled the charge of monopoly, MHI’s Lesli Gooch was quick to publicly reply.  Frankly, Ryan’s framing of the issue wasn’t the strongest, and Gooch’s reply was thus made easy.

DougRyanAmericanBankerManufacturedHousingMonopoly-postedDailyBusinessNewsManufacturedHousingIndustryProNews-575x237

While MHI’s SVP Lesli Gooch has denied the charge, Doug Ryan at CFED, and long time MHI member, George Allen, are among those who’ve raised the issue of monopolistic practices by MHI. Soheyla Kovach approaches this from a fresh and unique perspective, as her report and analysis linked below proves.

But after months of invitations to MHI – including Ms. Gooch – other staff, and their executive committee members, MHI stopped replying to these concerns roughly a year ago.  They have also expressed refused to take questions in public.

In what might be seen as a type of ‘replies,’

  • an MHI contracted outside attorney,
  • surrogates of theirs,
  • an apparently anonymous package that delivered a threat via U.S. mail (which can be a federal crime = FYI, we called that ‘bluff’ and nothing happened),
  • have all threatened the publisher ofMHProNews. We called their bluffs.

Extortion? RICO? Allegedly Illegal, and Dirty Side of Manufactured Housing, Exposed

  • They’ve arguably played games to harm us, but no legal action.

Note, these threats don’t deny what we’ve published. They are nibbles at the edges, not a denial. Last but not least, MHI sent an anonymous, unsigned letter, removing MHProNews as a member, under the pretense that they had no category for a news source in their association.

That’s demonstrably a ruse, but for reasons that will become clear in the days ahead, they would not give any of the documents requested that preceded that membership cancellation letter.

MHProNews is not alone as being singled out for a win-lose type of proposition. But all of this begs the question, what are they hiding?  Why are they hiding it?

“Accurate, but Misleading” MHI Preserving Access to Manufactured Housing Act Alert – ‘Weaponized New$,’ Fact Check$

We hear from Congressional sources that investigations are underway.

We know from other sources that media and third parties are tracking these developments, and taking an interest.

Is there an anti-trust (anti-monopoly), case to be made?

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

Are there hundreds, perhaps thousands of manufactured home business that have been harmed by “the moat” and MHI’s arguably poor performance?

Has MHI begun ‘promotion’ (note, that favors a Berkshire Hathaway brand, a company that relies on Berkshire Hathaway product, and a company that is led by a former Clayton division executive) to duck the growing pressure to ‘do something’ demanded by this publication and numerous industry leaders, including MHI members?

Terry Decio, Skyline Homes, “The Secret” – The Rest of the Story

If MHI et al are serious about facts and defending the industry, why haven’t they corrected the documented cases of factual errors MHProNews has spotlighted, which have been disputes that arose from MHI’s own members?

TimWilliamsCreditLinkedIn21stMortCorpCEOManufacturedHousingIndustryMHIChairmanWarrenBuffettBerkshireHathawayChairman

Warren Buffett, right, credit Wikipedia. Tim Williams, right, credit, LinkedIn. Collage credit, MHProNews. Click above.

If MHI et al are serious about facts and defending the industry, why don’t they respond to each and every flawed media report, as was once floated as part of their reason for hiring Boerger in the first place?

Do you or someone you know have a case or claim against MHI, Berkshire Hathaway?

Triple damages may await those willing to jump into that fray.

We Provide, You Decide.” ## (News, review, commentary, analysis).

TwitterFacebookLinkedInNew Year’s Resolution: On this 11th day of Christmas, a request.

This writer already has one of the largest LinkedIn followings in the manufactured home industry. But we’ve frankly not asked for Twitter, or Facebook followers. That changes, starting today. If you want to keep up with posts relevant to the industry, you can connect via the links below.

https://www.linkedin.com/in/latonykovach/

https://twitter.com/LATonyKovach @LATonyKovach
https://www.facebook.com/tony.kovach.71

 

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ThereAreOnly2WaysToLearnOwnOthersExperiencesLATonyKovachManufacturedHousingIndustryMHProNews

We agree with Warren Buffett on the value of the lessons of history, reading and research. Without those deep insights, the wool can be pulled over other people’s eyes.

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.

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

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

November 20th, 2017 Comments off

PerverseWarrenBuffettDodd-FrankCFPBManufacturedHousingInstituteManufacturedHomeLoansClayton21stVanderbiltDailyBusinessNewsMHProNewsThere seems to be some perverse human characteristic that likes to make easy things difficult.”

– Warren Buffett,
Berkshire Hathaway (BH) Chairman, parent to Clayton Homes, Vanderbilt Mortgage and Finance (VMF) & 21st Mortgage Corp, other industry suppliers, et al, cited per BrainyQuote.

 

The essence of simplicity for business professionals is the would-have-been campaign platform teased by star performer and manufactured home owner, Kid Rock.

 

KidRockSenateDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

MHLivingNews and MHProNews highlighted Kid Rock periodically for months. Among the reasons are the simple points he made. Whatever his intent, Kid Rock told the story of the MH Industry’s home owners and independent business people’s struggles in compelling ways.

“Born Free,” “Po-Dunk” Manufactured Homeowner Kid Rock Updates Senate Race Status

Perhaps in the era of President Barack Hussein Obama, the realistic fix for Dodd-Frank’s harm was the long sought Preserving Access to Manufactured Housing Act.

But is Preserving Access still the best option in this new era of Regulatory Rollback, under President Donald J. Trump?

IWillLowerTaxesEliminateUnnecesaryRegulationUnleashAmercianEnergyPlacingAMericanBusienssandWorkersFirst-DOnalTrumpNationViewsMHProNews

President Trump and VP Mike Pence have both said they will be in the promise keeping business.  As the Daily Business News has tracked for the MH Industry’s professionals and enthusiasts, the economy is advancing with those regulatory roll-backs, see link here. http://www.mhpronews.com/blogs/daily-business-news/profitable-insight-potu-trump-effect-on-mh-stock-at-1-year-part-4/

When the president and much of the GOP are pursuing eliminating or severely curtailing the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) that Dodd-Frank spawned, why tweak a law, when you can kill it or take control over it?  And based on the regulatory rollbacks to date, isn’t it obvious that the president will replace Cordray with someone more business friendly?

Obtained Email Details Richard Cordray Resigning Soon, Cong. Hensarling Reacts

Kid Rock, Donald Trump and millions of others have advocated for something simple.  Cut regulations, cut taxes, let the genius of American business professionals create jobs, and through business growth, create more prosperity for millions of Americans.

Facts Are, Facts Matter

What we learn from history is that people don’t learn from history.”

– Warren Buffett,
Berkshire Hathaway (BH) Chairman, parent to Clayton Homes, Vanderbilt & 21st Mortgage, per GoodReads.

As GovTrack and the Daily Business News on MHProNews have reported for months, the odds of passing the Financial Choice Act are far better than is the passage of Preserving Access.  While the odds for both have risen since the report below, that link is but one of several examples of reported news that MHI could have pro-actively responded to by pivoting from their long-held Preserving Access position.

Financial Choice Act, with MHI Bill, Heading to Floor Vote, Outlook, Analysis

Given that Nathan Smith – former MHI Chair, prominent Democratic Party activist, and partner in SSK Communities – said that it was his goal to cause the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) to stop being a reactive association, and to start being a pro-active one.  If so, why is MHI still so reactively focused on the Preserving Access issue in the Age of Trump?

 

 

Superficiality is the curse of the modern world.” – Matthew Kelly

Support for Preserving Access, For the Record

It is a matter of record that MHLivingNews and MHProNews actively supported Preserving Access in word and deed for years. Time, talent, and treasure were expended to create articles and videos that documented why the CFPB’s implementation of Dodd Frank were harming the industry’s consumers and businesses alike. To this moment, this publication is okay with the goal, but what we’ve spotlighted is that a far better goal for the MH Industry is now possible.

That original full-length Nathan Smith video and article were but one of dozens of examples of active support by this trade publisher of the MHI sponsored bill.  That video, or dozens of articles, lobbying, etc. cost MHI not one dime.

This trade media – in association with those industry companies that we work with – paid for that video, and so much more, in time, talent, and treasure.  MHI can’t legitimately claim otherwise.

MHI has allowed millions of dollars of the association’s member’s dues money to be gobbled up in this Preserving Access effort, plus the MHI PAC money in addition to the association costs.

Where are the MHI results?

PEPProtectEducatePromoteUnlockingMindsKeyToAdvancementMHProNews

http://www.mhpronews.com/industry-news/industry-in-focus/a-executive-summary-400-words-manufactured-housing-industry-obstacles-and-billions-in-opportunities

Barney_Frank wikipediaPostedDailyBgusinesNewsMHProNews

Barney Frank, official photo, credit Wikipedia.

Perhaps the better question is, who benefited by NOT passing Preserving Access?

Barney Frank Letter De-Bunked a Key Dodd-Frank Claim…

It should also be noted that it was an MHProNews reader who supplied this potent letter that was first published here, and was later used by MHI.  This letter – linked below – was read into the Congressional record, in support of Preserving Access.

Barney Frank Letter link.

It was also MHLivingNews and MHProNews that discovered and broke the story that CFED – since renamed, Prosperity Now – was receiving CFPB funding.

CFED and CFPB – Confused, Conflicted “Friends” of Manufactured Home Owners and Prospective Buyers?

Of course, CFED backed the CFPB — they were being paid by them.

Follow the Money?

Among the articles that MHI President Richard “Dick” Jennison asked MHProNews to publish was this one by Jason Boehlert.

Manufactured Housing Institute and Consumer Groups Urge CFPB to Change Loan Originator Guidelines; Support Builds for H.R. 1779

Shortly after it was published, Jennison contacted MHProNews in what could be described as a panic.

Jennison’s urgent request? That MHProNews unpublish the article that they had previously asked just days before that we publish for them.  Please note the footnote under the article, linked above.

Per Jennison’s call – and what other MHI sources later revealed to MHProNews – it seems that Jennison, Boehlert, and MHI had failed to check with the consumer groups before announcing their “victory.”  As MH industry history tells us, their was no victory to announce.

LATonyKovachMHProNewsMHLivingNewsMHINoJournalistPhotoNCCPostedDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

At the recent San Antonio MHI meeting, Dick Jennison and Lesli Gooch repeatedly made thinly veiled statements, aimed at MHProNews. But when these signs were first introduced, top MHI staff claimed it was aimed at ‘outside’ media, not ‘industry media.’ What caused that change by Jennison and his allies toward a dues paying MHI association member? What message does it send to others in the association? What message does it send to the industry at large? Is MHI trying to create a de facto industry trade media monopoly? Other monopolies?

Here are some of the dozens (if not, hundreds) of articles that MHLivingNews and MHProNews published in support of Dodd-Frank, CFPB related news, and reform efforts.

Media Should Re-Visit Dodd-Frank Reporting in Light of Congressional Testimony

Noise and Smoke vs. Facts About Manufactured Homes and Lending

Renters’ Nation: The Dark Side of Dodd-Frank and Its Impact on Affordable Housing

She Black, He’s White, They’re in Different Parties. Why Congressional Representatives Terri Sewell and Andy Barr Support Preserving Access to Manufactured Housing

Dodd-Frank and Manufactured Home Financing: The Place Where Good Intentions and Unintended Consequences Collide

Can MHI – or any of their most ardent supporters – find any others in the industry’s trade media that provided more published support for their Preserving Access bill?

Thousands of others – including us – wrote in support of their bill. But in hindsight, in spite of all those efforts, wasn’t Preserving Access a flawed plan from the start?

ExperienceTeachesOnlyTheTeachableAldusHuxleyBrainyQuoteDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

Those and numerous other pro-Preserving Access steps were taking place, even though Jennison was allegedly already undermining MHProNews/MHLivingNews, which will be the subject of a separate, upcoming report.

While word, deeds, and rumors were coming to MHProNews about Jennison’s and his allies effort to undermine this pro-industry trade media – which we where then an MHI member company – MHProNews continued to support Preserving Access. Why?  On principle, based upon what we knew at the time, it seemed like a sound plan.

Furthermore, the evidence shows that MHProNews continued to allow MHI to provide content to be shared with the industry to promote that effort. One of several possible examples is linked below.

Manufactured Housing Institute Responds to Doug Ryan-CFED commentary on CFPB report on Manufactured Housing Finance

Note that in a prior message to MHProNews, MHI’s then VP admitted that Barack Obama’s winning in 2012 was a significant setback for any roll-back of Dodd-Frank.

2012 Election Results and Coming Lame Duck Session

That being the case, as MHI’s own VP stated, why did MHI continue to pursue Preserving Access

Why did MHI continue to promise passage of Preserving Access – as Jennison publicly did in 2015 at Louisville – when their own Vice President of Government Affairs laid out the facts as to why it was not going to happen?

In hind-sight, where was the logic of the MHI stance?  Or as Berkshire Hathaway’s chairman has said,

Chains of habit are too light to be felt until they are too heavy to be broken.”

– Warren Buffett,
Berkshire Hathaway (BH) Chairman, parent to Clayton Homes, Vanderbilt & 21st Mortgage, et al, per Investing.

As quoted in Medium, his partner at BH said, “Warren Buffett has become one hell of a lot better investor since the day I met him, and so have I. If we had been frozen at any given stage, with the knowledge we had, the record would have been much worse than it is. So the game is to keep learning, and I don’t think people are going to keep learning who don’t like the learning process.” – Charlie Munger, Berkshire Hathaway – parent to Clayton Homes, Vanderbilt & 21st Mortgage, et al.

Isn’t it time for the industry’s business professionals to follow Buffett’s lead on three things: reading, planning long term, and learning from the lessons of history?

WarrenBuffettMostImportantHabitReadingReadMajorityofSuccessfulPeopleRead30MinutesDailyTimeMoneyDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

MHI and Warren Buffett provide the best reasons for the industry to follow and support the industry’s leading independent trade media. MHLivingNews.com, and MHProNews.com.  BH companies do… 

What MHI, Industry Insiders Have Told MHProNews

Several industry success stories, plus association, non-profit and other informed sources and insiders have told MHProNews that Dodd-Frank has proven to be a windfall for Buffett’s brands.

Bank Vault Door Closes on Manufactured Housing Lender

U.S. Bank clearly stated that that they exited manufactured home lending, due in part to low volume, and regulatory risk.

The volume, knowledgeable sources at U.S. Bank said was okay, as their loan portfolio was profitable.

But U.S. Bank could not overlook the risk of the loans.  That statement dovetails with what UMH President Sam Landy told MHLivingNews about their own loan program, and Landy pointed to others that exited for the same reason – regulatory risk – as was reported.

Sam Landy, UMH CEO, on Dodd-Frank and The Preserving Access to Manufactured Housing Act – S 682/HR 650

Some of that regulatory risk could have been eliminated, per our sources, by trading the MLO rule for the 21st/VMF sought points and fees rule.

The Bottom Lines?

Warren Buffett has said that his favorite hold time is forever. Unlike many in the industry, which is often short term in thinking, Buffett’s patient. In 2003, Buffett began his run on taking over the manufactured housing industry.

Fraud, Class Action, CFPB-Warren Buffett, Berkshire Hathaway, Clayton Homes, Vanderbilt Mortgage & Finance, 21st Mortgage, Manufactured Housing Institute, and the Manufactured Homes Industry

It has not been without controversy, as MHProNews has previously reported, and more veteran industry professionals know first-hand.

In hindsight, isn’t it true that Buffett and his brands win regardless if Preserving Access passes or not?  Sources have made precisely that claim, and those sources include voices within MHI’s circle of influence.

Beyond that circle that speak off-the-record, are comments like Alan Amy, Lance Inderman, Bob Crawford, or others who have spoken on the record on various aspects of the Preserving Access and related issues.

LanceIndermanQuoteDoddFrankObamCarePrivateSectorDespiseGovtwealthyDespiseTruePrivateSectorUseGovtDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

This comment was previously sent, and MH Industry readers, as with any quote, should determine if it fits the context of this article. “We Provide, You Decide.” ©

MHI/NCC member Frank Rolfe made it clear that MHI’s communications and pushing for Dodd-Frank made no sense to him.

 

FrankRolfeNegativeArticlesOnIndustryNoCommentbyManufacturedHousingInstituteMHIRVHorizonsMobleHomeUniversityPostedDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews-575x132

http://www.mhpronews.com/blogs/daily-business-news/frank-rolfe-blasts-mhi-for-poor-media-engagement-industry-reactions/

Solutions, Not Whining

Jim Ayotte’s statement, quoted below, was sent to MHProNews regarding a different topic, one that will be published soon.  But isn’t Ayotte’s observation a keen one for not only associations, but also businesses or pro-industry trade publishers too?

AsAssocExecutiveMyJobAssessSituationSeekBestPossibleOutcomeBasedOnFactsAsIKnowThem-ManufacturedHousingIndustryVoicesDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

Don’t the facts reveal that MHI has supported one ineffective policy after another?  Where is their self-proclaimed clout?

Exclusive – HUD’s Manufactured Housing Program Administrator Pam Danner, Update

While MHI has failed to advance its agenda, even before MHProNews began to more aggressively fact check the association, doesn’t the history above clearly reflect that MHLivingNews and MHProNews supported Preserving Access?

Even while supporting MHI’s bill, and prior to this publication more aggressive fact checks of MHI, the Daily Business News will further allege that Dick Jennison was working against this operation’s interests.

That’s not a light comment.  Others associated with MHI have said similarly, that their interests (not just ours…) are being undermined by the Monopolistic Housing Institute (oops, Manufactured Housing Institute…MHI) – too.

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

Perhaps more significant, as MHI presses on with its over half-decade failed agenda, for whatever reasons, the industry continues to consolidate.

That consolidation is taking place due to the heavy burdens of regulations.

Regulation Nation – Manufactured Housing Associations, Companies, and Professionals

The non-profits and MHI company members have informed the Daily Business News that MHI had in its power to ‘cut a deal’ to eliminate the so-called MLO, several years ago by agreement.  The trade?  Give up the points and fees in exchange for the MLO rule.  MHI’s leadership, per those sources, said no.

IshbelDickensPhotoNationalManufacturedHomeOwnersAssocNMHOALogoDailyBuisnessNewsMHproNews

MHProNews has fact-checked the often flawed positions of NMHOA for years; that said, on this issue, there are multiple sources that state that Dickens accurately reflected the meeting between MHI and other non-profits.

While other industry companies and so-called “Lonnie Dealers” could have benefited from the points and fees rule too, the primary beneficiary were the Berkshire Hathaway brands of 21st, and Vanderbilt.

Simple reason tells the objective observer that Warren Buffett’s companies have not only dominated MHI, they’ve used MHI to the detriment of thousands of others in the industry.

So where is the logic for independents to support MHI?

The Racket?

It is Democratic lawmakers who are calling leading light Democratic supporter Warren Buffett’s MH brands a “near monopoly.”

CongressAsksDOJInvestigateClaytonHomesCreditTwitterWikipediaMHProNews

U.S. Representatives Maxine Waters (D-CA), Keith Ellison (D-MN), Emanuel Cleaver (D-MO), Mike Capuano (D-MA). Image credit, Twitter, Wikipedia. http://www.mhpronews.com/blogs/daily-business-news/post-charlottesville-cfas-hunts-evidence-of-racism-steering-predatory-lending-against-buffetts-clayton-homes-vanderbilt-mortgage-and-21st-mortgage/

It was Tim Williams who made the statement below, one that thousands in manufactured housing would agree with.

VicePresidentMikePenceWifeKarenHandOverHeartPledgeColts49ersGameWashingtonTimesDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

Notice. One can agree with 21st Mortgage CEO and prior MHI Chairman Tim Williams’ presentation, from which the slide above was taken with permission, while still questioning how it can be that Williams is intellectually at odds with Berkshire Hathaway Chairman, Warren Buffett. To see all of William’s informative slides, click the graphic above. http://www.MHProNews.com/industry-news/industry-in-focus/is-tim-williams-21st-mortgage-ceo-mhi-chair-at-odds-with-berkshire-hathaway-chairman-warren-buffett

But isn’t it ironic that his statement flies in the face of what Warren Buffett supported?

HillaryClintonWarrenBuffettCreditBostonGlobePostedManufacturedHousingIndustryResearchDataReportsDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews-com-

Hillary Clinton, left, Warren Buffett, right. Credit – Boston Globe.  But Buffett’s stock has soared since the Trump victory, see the graphic and report, linked here. 

Namely, Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama, both of whom supported Dodd-Frank.  Where’s the logic?

Chains of habit are too light to be felt until they are too heavy to be broken.” – Warren Buffett.

What we learn from history is that people don’t learn from history.

– Warren Buffett,
Berkshire Hathaway (BH) Chairman, parent to Clayton Homes, Vanderbilt & 21st Mortgage, per GoodReads.

 

Is Buffett and MHI hoping small to mid-sized companies keep paying for MHI, so that Buffet’s brands benefit from MHI’s actions?

Are companies pressured into being MHI members, if they want to do business with Buffett’s brands?

 

The Solution?

The industry needs a post-production association, one that will replace the tongue-in-cheek “Monopolistic Housing Institute.” MHARR has long supported that call.

MHARR has long supported that position.

Isn’t it long overdue?  If not now, when the evidence is so clear, when?

BobCrawfordDickMooreHousingFrankRofleRVHorizonsMobileHomeUniversityTunicaShowManufacturedHousingIndustryMHProNews

 

Before another year of dues are sent by a company like your’s to MHI, isn’t it time for businesses to re-assess, and plan for a new national association platform?

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

Possible concepts are in the report linked above.

IfYoureWillingtoAbandonPrinciplesConveincesocialAcceptabilityNotPrinciplesCostumeJoeConchaTheHilInspirationlMHProNews874

http://www.mhpronews.com/blogs/INspiration/principles-social-acceptance-and-posturing/

Principles, Social Acceptance, and Posturing

As a trade publication, akin to Ayotte’s insight, the best that we or any professional can do is do the best with the facts when known. MHProNews’ understanding of Preserving Access and MHI have evolved through painful experience. It is thus proper to attempt to inform the industry of the facts, allegations and concerns as they are known and alleged.

Simplicity is supporting the kind of proven pro-business positions advocated by Kid Rock, and President Donald Trump.

KidRockSenateDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

We can and would support a new national post-production association effort, that is pro-business, pro-consumer, and based upon sound ethical principles.

IWillLowerTaxesEliminateUnnecesaryRegulationUnleashAmercianEnergyPlacingAMericanBusienssandWorkersFirst-DOnalTrumpNationViewsMHProNews

President Trump and VP Mike Pence have both said they will be in the promise keeping business. MHProNews publicly supported Trump – while MHI, just days before the election – put two pro-Clinton speakers on their Chicago event stage.

We Provide, You Decide.” © ## (News, analysis, and commentary.)

Note 1: For those who want to sign up to our industry leading headline news updates – typically sent twice weekly – please click here to sign up in just seconds. Thanks to for those who directly and/or through social media are sharing their appreciation for our pro-Industry, pro-growth, pro-bottom line solution oriented industry coverage.

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

SoheylaKovachManufacturedHomeLivingNewsManufacturedHousingIndustryDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews-Submitted by Soheyla Kovach to the Daily Business News for MHProNews.com.
Soheyla is a managing member and co-founder of LifeStyle Factory Homes, LLC the parent company to MHProNews and MHLivingNews.

Sunday Morning Weekly Recap Manufactured Housing Industry News May 21st 2017 to May 28th 2017

May 28th, 2017 Comments off

sunday-morning-weekly-manufactured-home-pro-news-recap-1-4-to-1-10-2015-mhpronews-com-Our theme for this month: Magnificent May. Our featured articles are now available on the MHProNews.com home page.

To see the line-up of over 3-dozen featured articles for this month, along with the headline commentary, please click the link above.

Manufactured, modular and prefabricated home professionals know that how a home got to its location should not define a person or their dwelling.

 

What the Daily Business News spotlights day-by-day are the tragedies, triumphs and struggles for acceptance of the obvious solution for millions for the growing affordable housing crisis in the U.S. and beyond.

mhpronewslogoindustrynewstipsviewsproscanuse

 

When you read the lineup for the month found on the home page, you can reflect on another motto as you chart your own professional path ahead: “We Provide, You Decide.”  ©

 

What’s New On MHLivingNews

 mhlivingnews-improvedlivingforle-logo

“Leaders Grasp Nettles” – Health, Professional, and Home Seekers Wisdom

 

Respect Demanded: MHC Residents, Families, Speak Out

 

What’s New On MHProNews

 

Saturday May 27th, 2017

 

Texas Business Interests? TMHA Urges Calls to Legislators TODAY, Yes Saturday, Supporting Pending Bill

 

The Curious Case of a Sewer System… Or Not

 

 Friday May 26th, 2017

 

While MSM Spins Anti-Trump Narrative, Voters and Donors Support the President

 

UMH Spotlight as they, Sun Communities Gain, MHCV Battered, Broader Markets Mixed

 

Manufactured Home Community Best Practices Debate, Rentals vs. Sales and Accounting Methods

 

Veteran Gets Assist from Manufactured Home Community Residents

 

Manufactured Housing Delivers Hope for Families in Need

 

 Thursday May 25th 2017

 

Pros and Cons of Licensing, How Government Regulations Can Harm Job Creation

 

Skyline Shares Spike, MHCV Takes Huge Leap, Broader Markets Rise for Third Straight Day

 

Modular Construction Could Provide Critical Solution

 

As Site-Built Housing Market Drifts, Huge Opportunity for MH Rises

 

Manufactured Housing – Helping Those Most In Need

 

Wednesday May 24th, 2017

 

When You Manage a Community Long Enough

 

UMH, Nobility Spike, MHCV Dips Again, Broader Markets Rise on Fed News

 

Is it Judgment Day for the CFPB?

 

MHARR: EPA Action on Formaldehyde Rule

 

Zell: “I Try to be Right 60 or 70 Percent of the Time”

 

Tuesday May 23rd, 2017

 

LCI Industries Makes Major Move

 

Skyline, ELS Gain, MHCV Dips, Broader Markets Jump as Trump Budget Arrives

 

Trump’s Negative News Coverage Belies Public’s Positive Pesky Facts

 

Manufactured Home Community Faces the Music

 

NFIB Sounds off to Washington on Tax Reform

 

 

Monday May 22nd, 2017

 

MHARR to the EPA: Withdraw Discriminatory Formaldehyde Mandate

 

Cavco Spikes, Skyline Plummets, Broader Markets Rise on Trump Trip Momentum

 

Big League Presidential Deals Undermine DC Narrative of Struggling Trump Administration

 

Tiny Homes Make Moves North of the Border

Victory for Residents or Erosion of Rights? A City Takes Action

 

 

Sunday May 21st, 2017

 

Sunday Morning Weekly Recap Manufactured Housing Industry News May 14th 2017 to May 21st 2017

 

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

 

rcwilliams-writer75x75manufacturedhousingindustrymhpronews

RC Williams, MHProNews.

Submitted by RC Williams to the Daily Business News for MHProNews.

 

(Copyright Notice: This and all content on MHProNews and MHLivingNews always have been and are Copyrighted, © 2017 by MHProNews.com a dba of LifeStyle Factory Homes, LLC – All Rights Reserved. No duplication is permitted without specific written permission. Headlines with link-backs are of course ok. A short-quoted clip, with proper attribution and link back to the specific article are also ok – but you must send a notice to iReportMHNewsTips@mhmsm.com of the exact page you’ve placed/posted such a use, once posted.)

Sunday Morning Weekly Recap Manufactured Housing Industry News May 14th 2017 to May 21st 2017

May 21st, 2017 Comments off

sunday-morning-weekly-manufactured-home-pro-news-recap-1-4-to-1-10-2015-mhpronews-com-Our theme for this month: Magnificent May. Our featured articles are now available on the MHProNews.com home page.

To see the line-up of over 3-dozen featured articles for this month, along with the headline commentary, please click the link above.

Manufactured, modular and prefabricated home professionals know that how a home got to its location should not define a person or their dwelling.

What the Daily Business News spotlights day-by-day are the tragedies, triumphs and struggles for acceptance of the obvious solution for millions for the growing affordable housing crisis in the U.S. and beyond.

mhpronewslogoindustrynewstipsviewsproscanuse

When you read the lineup for the month found on the home page, you can reflect on another motto as you chart your own professional path ahead: “We Provide, You Decide.”  ©

 

What’s New On MHLivingNews

 mhlivingnews-improvedlivingforle-logo

Attractive Garage Additions for Manufactured Homes – Do It Right

 

Multi-Billion Dollar Bombshell @ HUD! Affordable Housing Solution Ignored

 

What’s New On MHProNews

 

 Saturday May 20th, 2017

 

Ikea for Homebuilding? Revolution Precrafted Eyes Unicorn Status

 

 

Friday May 19th, 2017

 

OMHA, Manufactured Home Residents Ratchet Up Pressure

 

Skyline’s Wild Ride Continues, LCI Tops Estimates, Broader Markets Rise

 

UPDATE: Manufactured Home Community Saved

 

Manufactured Home Community Dealing With Serious Flooding

 

POTUS Trump – Sabotage! Welch, Buchanan, Others React to Swamp Attack

  

Thursday May 18th 2017

 

NIMBY in the Bayou – Manufactured Housing in Danger?

 

FEMA Manufactured Homes Finally Arrive

 

FOX Icon Roger Ailes Dies, Skyline Plummets, Manufactured Housing CV, Broader Markets Rebound

Homebuilder Confidence Numbers Show Need for Manufactured Housing

 

TV Star Donates Modular Home, Provides Industry Recognition 

 

Wednesday May 17th, 2017

 

Candidate: Beef Up Manufactured Home Community Inspections

 

Housing Starts Fall, Bottleneck to Economic Recovery-Manufactured Housing to the Rescue?

 

Millions in Sun Stock Shed, Carlyle Slides, Markets Battered on Trump-Comey Turmoil

 

100K on Employee Housing – When Tiny Homes Attack

 

Homebuilder Confidence Plunges, Golden Opening for Manufactured Housing

 

Tuesday May 16th, 2017

 

City Takes Plunge into Modular Housing

 

Commerce Bank Moves on AMG, Updates on Skyline and ELS

 

Dr. Carson Calls for Comments on HUD, MHARR Reacts

 

Generation Buy? Millennials and Home Ownership

 

Manufactured Home Owners Could Be in for a Surprise

 

Monday May 15th, 2017

Are Manufactured Home Communities Good or Bad?

 

U.S. Infrastructure Plans Solidify, to Spur Markets, Jobs – Patrick Spikes

 

Minority Manufactured Home Builder Helps Sandy Victims

 

Sam Zell calls Obama plan “half ass-d”

 

Sunday May 14th, 2017

 

Sunday Morning Weekly Recap Manufactured Housing Industry News May 7th 2017 to May 14th 2017

 

 

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

 

Submitted by RC Williams to the Daily Business News for MHProNews.

 

(Copyright Notice: This and all content on MHProNews and MHLivingNews always have been and are Copyrighted, © 2017 by MHProNews.com a dba of LifeStyle Factory Homes, LLC – All Rights Reserved. No duplication is permitted without specific written permission. Headlines with link-backs are of course ok. A short-quoted clip, with proper attribution and link back to the specific article are also ok – but you must send a notice to iReportMHNewsTips@mhmsm.com of the exact page you’ve placed/posted such a use, once posted.)