Posts Tagged ‘affordable housing crisis’

Manufactured Housing Institute Housing Alert, Affordable Housing Crisis, MHI’s #NettlesomeThings Response

December 18th, 2018 Comments off



We are periodically asked for an executive summary of the issues that have caused the purported manipulation of the most affordable kind of permanent housing in America. What follows is that executive summary, and it will include two complimentary threads. Read the text.  Then look at the illustrated cartoon-style pictures. Or reverse that order, but either way, watch the videos posted in this report too.  It all ties together.



This was sent out yesterday evening, just hours after MHProNews published its #NettlesomeThings report. Why doesn’t MHI respond as quickly to the almost daily examples in mainstream media of slurs or misinformation about manufactured homes or our industry’s home owners? The cartoon photos that follow include some from the photo array, shown above. 




Journalism, Fact Checks, and Analysis

In classic journalism, the dedicated reporter seeks the answers to these questions. Who? What? When? Where? Why? How?

In doing fact-checks and analysis, the dedicated journalist, looks for evidence, wants corroborating testimonials, follows the money, and examines the claims of the subject using a measure of skepticism with sound reason. They do a logical evidenced-based analysis, not using mere opinions.

The ethical journalist looks at all sources, not just selected ones.

MHI sent out a “housing alert” last night, after 6:30 PM ET. They did so within hours of our Daily Business News on MHProNews#NettlesomeThings report — which is linked in the clickable text/image-box below.


MHI Allies Respond, Provide Confirmation to #NettlesomeThings, Facts, and Clayton/Berkshire Exposés


Did Arlington, VA based MHI seek to disprove a single claim or allegation by our MHProNews report and analysis yesterday? No.




MHProNews looks at the facts, considers the sources, and follows the evidence. 


Instead, MHI arguably did another head fake, using literal head shots.  Photos of people in positions of authority with MHI ‘leaders’ that they want to impress their readers with.

MHI can get photos made with prominent Democrats or prominent Republicans. What does it prove?  Isn’t the bottom line still the bottom line?




How do these MHI photos with Trump Administration officials impact YOUR bottom line? How do these photos help more Americans get more affordable lending and housing that they could own instead of rent?  There are also photos of MHI ‘leaders’ with Obama Administration officials.  Did those prior photos help the rank and file of our part of the affordable housing industry?





Public officials will do a photo opportunity – a photo-op – with almost anyone. Candidates running for office will do the same too. What do those MHI photos actually prove?




As an ex-MHI member told MHProNews, isn’t their photos just more ‘razzle dazzle?’ Where are the RESULTS for the Majority of our industry’s independents?  Why are the once thriving numbers of independents in our industry shrinking for years?

What’s happened to our once far larger MH INDUSTRY?  How is it possible that with an affordable housing crisis, that manufactured housing could be underperforming so badly?



Or where are the lower cost Government Sponsored Enterprise loans by Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac on ALL HUD Code manufactured homes, which the Housing and Economic Recovery Act of 2008 (HERA) arguably required for the benefit of the Majority of Manufactured Home Owners and potential MH buyers?




Tim Williams said it himself in an MHI meeting room in San Antonio, Texas in 2017. A few dozen where in that MHI meeting room, including this writer. Williams said that Berkshire Hathaway owned 21st Mortgage and Vanderbilt Mortgage and Finance (VMF) had not turned over their data to the FHFA regulated Government Sponsored Enterprises (GSEs) of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.



Other manufactured home lenders did. Why not 21st and VMF?





Because it would cut into what Kevin Clayton said in this video below is the most profitable part of the manufactured housing industry for them, financing.







Kevin Clayton, full length video interview, with commentary for clarity. None of the interviewer’s or Kevin’s statements were edited.


The Kevin Clayton video interview is about a 57 minutes.  Properly understood, almost everything Kevin says has significance to investors, to industry professionals, to affordable housing advocates, to public officials, to antitrust experts in government, or for class action plaintiffs’ attorneys.

Several federal investigations are in fact underway. Democrats, Republicans, and independents wanted those investigations of the Omaha-Knoxville-Arlington Axis.

Mainstream media and our own MHProNews sources have confirmed these federal investigations.

The article linked above had three videos on it, all from third party media. We are reposting them here for your convenience.



The first is from local media, and it confirms – including with a Clayton Whistleblower – that investigations of Clayton and their lenders are underway, which of course Clayton denies any wrongdoing.



The next video is by Democracy Now, and focused on just one of Clayton Homes serious public scandals involving their handling of the Haitian crisis. They are a progressive group.



The next video is by a more conservative media outlet, and they mention that same case in Haiti ath Democracy Now did involving Bill Clinton and the Clinton Foundation. Both the left and right-wing media pointed to similar issues involving the same company, Clayton Homes.

These three videos demonstrate that this isn’t about party labels. It’s about posturing vs. results, the lack of results by MHI for the majority, and what caused those poor outcomes.  Follow the money, who benefited? Wasn’t it the Berkshire brands and their MHI allies?

While the affordable housing market has arguably been manipulated for years, the federal government has spent billions of dollars a year on housing programs. It doesn’t matter if the president has been a Democrat or a Republican, HUD Housing Programs have never been enough to keep up with the needs for affordable housing.

And yet, a big part of the solution has been hiding in plain sight. Modern manufactured homes.  It takes a kind of brilliance to devise such a slow motion scheme to obscure the most proven solution, doesn’t it?



MHI’s response to our #NettlesomeThings is to send out these photos, and then ask you to sign up with MHI, or renew your MHI membership. Who cares who they get their photo made with?

There’re logically three basic options.


  • MHI, Clayton and the Berkshire Brands don’t know how to grow the industry, but they claim and posture that they do, while taking independent company’s dues money. Or
  • They know what to do to grow the business, but they just aren’t doing it now, while they consolidate more independents at a discount.
  • Some combination of bullets 1 and 2. Do you see any other reasonable explanation that fits the facts?



All truth passes through three stages, says the notable author in the quote below.




Which of these three stage are you in?

Please read the related reports, linked above and below from those respective text/image boxes.  BTW, it goes without saying, MHI and their string-pullers have the same First Amendment rights that we all do.  They can support who they want to, as they want to do.  But when they claim to be doing X, and are doing Y and Z, that’s a different matter.  They are collecting money from members under arguably false pretenses.


FollowThe MoneyPayMoreAttentionToWhatPeopleDothanwhatTheySaySpySea72MartyLavinYachtManufacturedHousingINdustryProMHProNews

Ask yourself. Do these Marty Lavin dictums apply in this case?


The logic of this statement can be applied to a variety of cases.


Our thanks to you, our thousands of daily readers, our sources, and sponsors.


Screen captures of MHI email to their members is provided under fair use guidelines for media. Cartoon text commentary is by MHProNews. Note that the issues raised in each cartoon can be googled, because they represent actual topics that have been covered by MHProNews, usually on the Daily Business News module.


Speaking of sources, one must acknowledge those that went before us. MHARR has fought the good fight for years, and have arguably had MHI try to grab credit for work that they often did or led the initial charge on. There have been others who patiently ‘schooled’ us on what is occurring in manufactured housing, some of whom are current or former MHI members.  Think Marty Lavin, Frank Rolfe, Dick Moore, Bob Crawford and others.

Collectively, you’ve made this trade media the runaway #1 “News, Tips, and Views Pros Can Use” © in MHVille. And the MHLand response to our years of facts checks, follow the money, and analysis has caused our readership to more than double in the last year alone. Our sincere thanks to all who’ve made that true and possible. “We Provide. You Decide.” © ## (News, commentary, and analysis.)

(See Related Reports, further below. Third-party images and content are provided under fair use guidelines.)

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Related References:

Smoking Gun 3 – Warren Buffett, Kevin Clayton, Clayton Homes, 21st Mortgage Corp Tim Williams – Manufactured Home Lending, Sales Grab?


It’s Your Profession – Investment of Time, Talent, Treasure – So What’s Next?


Machiavellian “Godfather” – Sam Zell, Warren Buffett, Capital, Lending and Crossed Lines in Manufactured Housing





Manufactured Home Retailer Draws Positive Media, as Affordable Housing Crisis Hits Local Market Hard

August 29th, 2018 Comments off


In markets across the country, the effects of the affordable housing crisis are easy to find. In the Reno-Sparks area, local media reported just how bad the housing crunch has become. In that same market, local media has spotlighted a prominent manufactured home retailer for how business has become crazy busy.


Some bullets from the first video posted could be rounded off with these summary numbers:

  • 3500 families are on federal housing assistance
  • Another 2100 families are on a waiting list
  • About 1000 are in homeless shelters
  • Some 200 are homeless, without shelters

The video is insightful, in part, because it provides a sense of how such studies would often apply to local housing markets in an area near your location(s).

Now we may add the video interview in that was done at Craftsman Homes, Leo A. Poggione’s outfit. Poggione is the Secretary for the Executive Committee of the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI).

It is not our intention to reveal any location-specific results. But if you read and watch the local media’s report, you would think that new homes are flying off the shelf.  But a look at the June 2018 new home shipment data for IBTS tells a different story.

The first IBTS shipment data column below reflects statewide single section shipments.  The next are multi-sectionals, the third are total shipments into NV for the month, and the last column reflects the total floors shipped.


There is little doubt that Craftsman or others in Nevada are doing better than a few years ago.  But ‘better’ from the industry’s historic bottom, is that something to brag about?  As our publisher recently said, with 20 years since our industry’s last peak, there are thousands of industry professionals who’ve never experienced a true boom.


What this story tells us are many things, that regular, detail-focused Daily Business News readers – and/or MHProNews client companies – already know. Namely, that the industry should be doing many times more sales than what it’s experiencing.

Fresh Facts, Figures, Future of Affordable Housing -Comparisons- Conventional Site-Built v Mobile/Manufactured Home Industry Data


Per News 2 Reno…

Over his 27 years in the business,” said John Potter for News 2, “Tim Richardson at Craftsman Homes in Sparks has seen his industry’s ups and downs. These days, it’s definitely up. As he told me, “Business is good John. Business…oh we’re swamped.”

Tim and dealers like him are part of the comeback for manufactured homes,” wrote Potter, “deliveries of which have been on the rise since 2009…and are primed for more growth in the face of high, high prices for local site-built houses. Tim says home prices now in Reno “are crazy, and I really don’t know how people can afford them.”


Click the above to learn more, which is not connected to this report.

6 years of steady price gains have put owning a traditional house, out of reach of many Nevadans. And with affordable housing in such short supply, there aren’t many alternatives. Reno’s average price for a single family home is now $400,000.” Potter asks, “Tim’s price for a double wide? “You can get a multi-section home for right around $65,000. So your payment will be under $1,000 a month, which is less than renting an apartment.”

There is a catch…you also need to get the land you need. Tim says, “We have land packages in the low $200’s for an 1800-2000 square foot house,” says Potter, who closed by saying, “Bottom line, the manufactured home business is growing…while houses here aren’t getting cheaper.”

All of that rings true. But investors and professionals with sharp minds – and sharper CFOs – want to dig behind the headlines.


The Facts Don’t Lie

The data – properly understood – should spark ‘inspirational dissatisfaction.’

Circumstances are getting better, but there are also headwinds and road-bumps ahead too.

Significant Slowdown of New HUD Code Manufactured Home Production Growth in June, Per Latest Data

Per our publisher, “Leo at Craftsman is a genuinely likeable gent.” He should be happy about the media plug.

LeoPoggionePresidentCrafsmanHomesDevelopmentConsultantDailyBusinessNewsMHProNewsBut there’s a very different story than just a brief spark of local media recognition.  For those who look at the facts with clear eyes and minds, they ought to desire an understanding of what a report like this could mean for them in their own markets.

The industry is just scratching the surface of its potential. As Rick Rand told MHProNews recently, we are just seeing the tip of the iceberg.


Click here or the above to learn more or register for the event, which is unrelated to the article.

But even with all of the opportunities, the facts don’t lie.  The home buying public has serious questions.

Until those genuine consumer questions get answered, there will not be a full recovery of our industry.  To see why fact-based marketing and sales matter, see the related report, linked below.  “We Provide, You Decide.” © ## (News, analysis, and commentary.)

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Related Reports:

Power & Profit$ from Factual Sales & Marketing, Monday Morning Manufactured Housing Meeting – Part 1

MHI SVP Lesli Gooch & MHARR CEO Mark Weiss Bookend New, Prior HUD Controversies

Introducing the Verge and Curbed’s “Home of the Future” – Video


“FEAR, Manufactured Homes, and a Solution to the Affordable Housing Crisis,” Special

June 12th, 2018 Comments off


Popular ValuePenguin recently featured a column on manufactured homes entitled, “Fear, Manufactured Homes and a Solution to the Affordable Housing Crisis.”

It opens with, “Fear affects decision-making every day. But often, “fear” is an acronym for “false evidence appearing real.” Our research indicates that the solution to the affordable housing crisis is hiding in sight, but fear and prejudice have kept it from being widely embraced.”

This “ValuePenguin op-ed, manufactured home experts Tom Egelhoff and L. A. “Tony” Kovach explain why fear and prejudice are keeping a key solution to the affordable housing crisis from being widely embraced.”

The article linked below sparked the team work between “Tom and Tony.”

Talk Radio “Open for Business Host” Tom Egelhoff Sounds Off On “MOBILE HOMES” as “AFFORDABLE HOUSING ANSWER”

The pro-industry article by “Tom and Tony” can be read in its entirety at this link here, or at the link below.

Enjoy, and share the good word about today’s manufactured homes. ## (News, analysis, commentary.)

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Sunday Morning Manufactured Home Industry Research, Reports, Headline News Recap 5.27.2018 to 6.3.2018

June 3rd, 2018 Comments off

Factoid. If you look at the home page of MHProNews on Sunday Morning, it will look like what you see on this tablet screen shot, above.



We were checking out at Walmart last night after dinner.  The woman who was ringing up our order was lightly conversing with my husband and family.  She was commenting on something the previous lady in line had said before leaving with her new goodies.  The lady at the register said to us, “What would my rabbi think about that?”  Without missing a beat, Tony said, “He’d likely think it would be Meshuggeneh.”

The woman looked with surprised delight, but apparently made the quick judgement that we were not Jewish.  “Yes, you’re right.  But how do you know what that means?”  “Because we have a number of Jewish friends and colleagues,” Tony replied, and in moments he and our son Tamas were both singing a few lines from Fiddler on the Roof to that woman’s amazement and joy.

The word “Meshuggah” is defined by the Free Dictionary like this: “Adj. 1. meshugga – senseless; crazy. meshuga, meshugge, meshuggeneh, meshuggener. Yiddish – a dialect of High German including some Hebrew and other words; spoken in Europe as a vernacular by many Jews; written in the Hebrew script.”  It’s use was perfectly suited for the occasion, and the exchanged clearly lifted the spirits of that woman — who doesn’t know us, and we did not know her save for those few minutes at a register.

There are times when the right words – including lyrical words – can bring joy, inspiration, comfort, or insight to others. Words can harm, and words can heal.

As trade publishers, it is never our intent to harm another, quite the opposite is true.

Journalism and trade journalism are relatives, but they are not precisely the same thing.

There is journalism for a cause, so-called agenda journalism.  Many in media try their hands at that, and to a degree, in as much as we advocate for this or that as a means of advancing manufactured housing in an editorial way, it would be fair to say that MHProNews and MHLivingNews have an agenda too. Every genuine trade media is a kind of de facto advocate for their respective cause or industry.

Ours agenda is out in the open. We want to see manufactured housing advance. Everything else, as my spouse might say, are details and commentary. During an affordable housing crisis, when the industry has done as much as 5 to 6 times higher levels of new manufactured home sales in the past, why isn’t the industry doing much better today?


For newcomers to the website not familiar with modern manufactured homes, learn more by clicking the image above or the link here.

Day by day, article by article, we strive to provide insights that address those kinds of opportunities and concerns.

Life can take surprising turns.

Neither Tony nor I imagined at the start of our studies and early careers that the course on our lives would bring us into manufactured housing.

My training was in medicine, and I’d been certified here in the U.S., and in a European nation, and my motherland too. Tony began his years of college studies in history, with a journalism scholarship, and a minor in business. As a medical scientist, I strive to look at things clinically. Tony uses decades of hands-on industry involvement in retail, communities, with lenders and producers, all aided by the lens of his education and other life experiences.

We naturally influence each other, as we aim to inform (and be informed by) you and the thousands of industry professionals, investors, and researchers who will check in today to read this among the total of 6.7 pages they will read on average before they go.


A child with serious medical conditions will altar your life’s paths. But what a joy it is to embrace life, including the challenges that life will always bring.  As thousands in MHVille know, Tamas travels with us to trade shows and other industry events.

Depending on the time of year, and what’s going on in the industry, page views per reader can go as high as 9 per visit.

But even our most recent third-party data demonstrates that our readers are twice as engaged as the average mainstream media news site (by comparison, mainstream news gets about 3.3 page views per reader). Wow, we have double the engagement – or more – than mainstream news readers get. Our sincere thank you to all who make that possible.

Webalizer and Alexa are among the sources of our traffic insights, and third-party data tells us that no other trade publication even comes close to us in the manufactured housing trade media field. Again, thank you. By the way, it was a challenge from George Allen who suggested that we generate this third-party data report.  We listen to a wide range of readers, and often respond to, readers comments, though not always instantly.

There are a handful of bigger websites than ours in what Tony likes to fondly call MHVille or HUDVille. But no one even comes close in MH trade media websites, or apparently in published MH media too.  These are facts. No one else in MH media even bothers to share their trade site or readership data. NOTE: It’s not how many of what you print, it is what gets read that counts.

That’s one of several ways that third-party data comes in handy.

Why are we successful, and have a MH Professional audience as wide and deep as we do? 

Fair questions.

First, we provide professional services to the industry, so we aren’t sitting in some ivory tower. We know factory-crafted homes from the ground up. Tony began award-winning, record-setting work in MH retail in the 1980s.  He later shifted to working with lenders on remarketing, and then with land-lease MH Communities (MHC) and producers.  In the industry’s trade media, it’s unlikely that anyone in MH history has interviewed more people than we have: actual manufactured home owners, numerous industry professionals, experts, and others who touch or connect with manufactured and modular home building.

Next, we curate topics that ought to have meaning for you, industry professionals, investors, policy advocates, and other kinds of researchers.  Thus, it should be no surprise when a number of articles here get over ten thousand hits or more in their first month online on MHProNews. Millions of page-views in a year can yield the kind of statistics that generated the following factoid.

The industry needs inspiration as well as fair warnings, and de facto morality tales. We are guided day-by-day with input from industry readers from across the range of businesses of all sizes.  The Daily Business News gathers input from a variety of sources, including:

  • insights and interactions with members and staffs of trade associations,
  • the federal government,
  • state or local officials,
  • mainstream media,
  • experts in various fields, and much more.

Yes, we have typos, as detractors like to note, but we also bring the industry’s most read, most discussed, and hardest-hitting articles. Tony says, “chaff and wheat.”  Keep the good grain, please pardon any keystroke or autocorrection-caused glitch.  Please pardon as needed, and keep in mind that for me, English is my third language.  Keep in mind too that we are doing more articles than all others combined between doing other services for various members of the industry.

We’re not aiming for the politically correct. We call it as we see it, but not for the sake of mere clickbait.

We are willing to expose what is necessary – the underlying factors that are holding our great industry back from achieving its potential for solving the massive, and growing affordable housing crisis.

We are willing to name-names, and point fingers, when there is evidence to make a claim.

We are evidence- and principle-based writers, with analysis informed by decades of hands-on experience in manufactured housing.

We’re mindful that every article gets read by thousands, many of whom will make decisions about manufactured housing related issues.

When third-party researchers, the federal government, others in mainstream media read, cite or quote our work, that all says something.  When certain voices in MHVille attack us (usually, quietly), that says something too. When the naysayers won’t debate publicly, that definitely tells you something’s amiss.  If they thought the facts were on their side, why not discuss them publicly?

Doing anything less than giving you actionable insights based upon reality – when during this U.S. affordable housing crisis our potential as an industry could be 5 to 10 times more business  – could debatably be called Meshuggeneh.

If you want to sign up for our industry leading headline news, delivered twice weekly, you can sign up in seconds at this link here or after the end of this article.

That said, let’s dive into this week’s tops headlines.


What’s New on the Masthead

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

What’s New from MHARR

Montgomery Confirmed as HUD Assistant Secretary


What’s New on MHLivingNews

FICO Credit Scores, Debt-to-Income (DTI) Ratios, Financing, Housing, and Manufactured Home Loans

FICO Credit Scores, Debt-to-Income (DTI) Ratios, Financing, Housing, and Manufactured Home Loans


What’s New on the Daily Business News

DailyBusinessNewsLogoMHProNewsLogo (1)

Saturday 6.2.2018

7 Surprising Keys to Unlock Manufactured Housing Industry Sales Success

7 Surprising Keys to Unlock Manufactured Housing Industry Sales Success


Friday 6.1.2018

“Cap X Coming Alive” “Don’t Punish Success” – Kudlow – Business, Economic, Political Outlook, PLUS MH Market Updates


HUD’s Operation Breakthrough, Promoting Factory, Industrialized Building – Mobile Home Era to Modern Manufactured Homes.

HUD’s Operation Breakthrough, Promoting Factory, Industrialized Building – Mobile Home Era to Modern Manufactured Homes.

Rollohome, Creating 60,000 Factory-Built Homes in 2 Years

Rollohome, Creating 60,000 Factory-Built Homes in 2 Years

Google, Tech, Manufactured Housing, and Political Power



Thursday 5.31.2018

Tariffs! Or Trade Tool? Markets Rocked, Manufactured Housing Industry Stock Updates

Cavco Industries (CVCO) Insights, Financial Update, Fiscal 2018 Fourth Quarter. Year End Results

Cavco Industries (CVCO) Insights, Financial Update, Fiscal 2018 Fourth Quarter. Year End Results

Understanding the Modern Realities of MHVille – Winners, Losers, Profits, and Loss

Understanding the Modern Realities of MHVille – Winners, Losers, Profits, and Loss

Manufactured Home Community Owner Alert, Rent Control, MHAction Plans Organized Action in Several States

Manufactured Home Community Owner Alert, Rent Control, MHAction Plans Organized Action in Several States


Wednesday 5.30.2018

Manufactured Housing Association for Regulatory Reform (MHARR) Pressing Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac to Fully Engage on Duty To Serve (DTS)

Manufactured Housing Association for Regulatory Reform (MHARR) Pressing Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac to Fully Engage on Duty To Serve (DTS)

Tariffs Designed to Defend American Tech, Peter Navarro Video, Plus MH Market Updates

NAR’s Lawrence Yun Raises Alarm for New Housing Crisis, MH Import?

NAR’s Lawrence Yun Raises Alarm for New Housing Crisis, MH Import?

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

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


Tuesday 5.29.2018

Robotics, 3D Printed Housing, Imminent Challengers for Manufactured Homes, Modular Housing – 3D Build Systems CEO Don Musilli

Robotics, 3D Printed Housing, Imminent Challengers for Manufactured Homes, Modular Housing – 3D Build Systems CEO Don Musilli

‘Wealth Creation vs. Redistribution,’ First Trust Chief Economist Brian Wesbury on Markets, Oil and U.S. – Plus MH Market Updates

FEDs, AGs, Law, Weaponized Gov’t – Business Risk, and Defense

FEDs, AGs, Law, Weaponized Gov’t – Business Risk, and Defense

Emerging Building, Construction Technologies Poised to Disrupt Housing, Developing, and More

Emerging Building, Construction Technologies Poised to Disrupt Housing, Developing, and More


Monday 5.28.2018

Attorney General Sues Manufactured Home, Modular Housing Company, and owner Stanley Hall

Attorney General Sues Manufactured Home, Modular Housing Company, and owner Stanley Hall

High-Rise Manufactured Home Stackable Towers, Compete with Modular/PreFabs, Density at Lower Cost

High-Rise Manufactured Home Stackable Towers, Compete with Modular/PreFabs, Density at Lower Cost

Memorial Day – 60 Second Video, Honoring the Fallen Who Preserved Freedom

Memorial Day – 60 Second Video, Honoring the Fallen Who Preserved Freedom

Code of Conduct – Good or Bad News, and Home Selling – Monday Morning Manufactured Housing Sales, Marketing Meeting

Code of Conduct – Good or Bad News, and Home Selling – Monday Morning Manufactured Housing Sales, Marketing Meeting


Sunday 5.27.2018

Sunday Morning Manufactured Home Industry Research, Reports, Headline News Recap 5.20.2018 to 5.27.2018

Sunday Morning Manufactured Home Industry Research, Reports, Headline News Recap 5.20.2018 to 5.27.2018

And that’s all she wrote, with a little help from that other guy, during the week that was.

We’ll have some hot topics tomorrow, and beyond. The new issue of Featured Articles and Interviews for June will likely be up by Friday.  If you and your team aren’t already among the thousands who read our twice-weekly headline industry news updates, click here or sign up free in seconds via the link below.  Our headline news style emails are far more open-and-read than similar mainstream media news, again, per third party analysis. We Provide, You Decide.” © ## (Headline news, analysis, and commentary.)

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Troubling University Research, “Dying Industry,” Says MHI Member Exec

November 9th, 2017 Comments off

StanfordUniversityResearchMHIMemberDyingIndustryManufacturedHomeCommunityProfessionalNewsMHProNewsAffordable housing for middle- and lower-income families is drying up by the month in California,” opens an article sent by an MHI member company executive, in response to recent industry coverage on the Daily Business News.

The subject line in the news tip had two words in it, “Dying industry.”

It should be editorially noted by MHProNews that this publication believes, as does recently interviewed Alan Amy and others, that the manufactured home industry is the future, not the past.

See that 2 minute video interview segment with award winning professional, Alan Amy, above.

Further note that the Daily Business News has previously reported on this specific issue, with numerous on-the-record quotes from industry professionals, at this link here.


Buena Vista Mobile Home Park. Credit: NBC Bay Area.

So the data, article, senders comments, and documents shared below reflect the concerns of that organizational executive, and MHI member.

The well-placed source is concerned that the industry as a whole isn’t seeing the full-scope of the practical issues that confront it.

While meetings often reflect happy talk, and national shipment tallies suggest industry growth, this veteran sees a different reality.

Quoting, “Please I am not arguing I am sharing with documents. Like religion people have beliefs rooted in a foundation that may be difficult to prove,” read the emailed comments, and verbatim opinion as cited came into MHProNews.

NewManufacturedHomeHUDCodeHomeShipmentsCARegistrations-DailyBusinessNewsMHProNewsOther parts of the MHI member’s statements, sent in a series of messages, read in part:

  • I gave you CA housing production…”
  • “…In 1954, “The Long Long Trailer” movie glorified trailer living
  • I gave you proof of Stanford Univ. MHC closings.” (editor’s note: see quotes from their research, that follows below.)
  • I gave you a recent history of HUD code production in CA.”
  • I gave you the local NIMBY attitude…”

It appears someone has a different reality? …Surely one can review the numbers and draw a different conclusion. Ask for proof of their beliefs,” the source said.


That industry professional also noted that “Prior to 1995, HUD code was producing a lot of homes and CA. did not have a housing crisis as Stanford noted its decline from local zoning after 1995.”


This graphic and the Google map are provided by MHProNews, not either of the other sources, under fair use guidelines for news media for illustration purposes.

Beyond the data and comments, the organizational executive provided the linked research, from a Stanford University graduate student that follows the Google map below.


Among the hardest hit are those living in mobile home parks [sic],” stated the Katie Kramon article.

DefiningSICinJournalismDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews-comKramon’s column was published by Peninsula Press, a project of Stanford Journalism. Only the graphic identified came with that article, the other illustrations used in this Daily Business News post hails from the off-the-record, MHI member source.

The Peninsula Press article continued, “In the last decade, 4,792 mobile home [sic] lots in the state have vanished from the map according to data from the California Department of Housing and Community Development, with even more expected to disappear.”

For ease of the industry professional’s reading, the SIC (a journalism term that means the technical or typographic error was found in the original, as shown) will not be repeated below, as it might get annoying.  The chart below is from Kramon’s research.


Kramon’s research article continued as follows.

KatieKramonPeninsulaPressStanfordJournalismVanishingMobileHomeParksCAAffordableHousingArticleAuthor-PostedDailyBusinessNewsMHProNewsAffordable housing is like the spotted owl or the tiger. If we don’t go out of our way to save what we have, then we’ll lose it forever,” stated Winter Dellenbach, described as the founder of the community group, Friends of Buena Vista, per Kramon.

Buena Vista is a case study of the challenges in saving the mobile home parks. For the last three years, the 400 residents of Palo Alto’s Buena Vista Mobile Home Park, located off El Camino about a mile from the Stanford Campus, have fought eviction and demolition of their homes to make way for higher-end housing for tech workers,” wrote Kramon.

Buena Vista has caught the attention of the Palo Alto community, as well as a community on the Stanford Campus — the Buena Vista Action Committee, a branch of the Students for Education Reform group,” the then journalism and graduate student wrote.

So far, $16 million has been allotted to saving the park from the city and a housing fund donated by Stanford University, according to the Santa Clara County Board of Supervisors and an announcement by city manager James Keene. This represents only a fraction of what is required to prevent the park from being sold — about $30 million, according to student representative Molly Seligman,” per the Peninsula Press.

The plight of residents in Buena Vista is similar to those in affordable housing throughout the state,” Kramon said, “based on an analysis on the loss of such housing by the California Department of Housing and Community Development that was published in 2012.”

California is at risk of losing 57,000 federally subsidized affordable apartments through conversion to market rate in the next five years, 35,000 in the next year,” that report said,” per the Sandford journalism report

She continues, “Palo Alto is in Santa Clara County — the fifth most at-risk in California for losing affordable housing. In the next 15 years, another 74,000 affordable housing apartments are at risk of disappearing in the state, according to the report.

The city has very little land, and what’s left is some of the most expensive land in the nation, Dellenbach said. Buena Vista has four acres, all privately owned and more profitable without the presence of the mobile home park. Friends of Buena Vista and some Palo Alto community members argue, however, that places like Buena Vista have a different kind of value. “We’ve never known a dispossession like this in our town. It’s enormous, it’s unique,” Dellenbach said.

But it’s not unique — at least not for California, and especially for the Bay Area and greater Los Angeles area. Mountain View lost the most mobile home lots of any one city — 307 lots in the past two decades. Over 400 mobile home parks have closed in the state over the last 20 years. Laguna Beach, another notoriously expensive zip code, lost 294 lots. And much of the change is yet to occur. According to Evan Gerberding, director of external relations at the California Department of Housing and Community Development: “California’s economic recovery during the last year, while ahead of the nation, has been uneven with nuanced growth in coastal zones, and inland areas lagging behind,” leaving many repairs to the state of affordable housing in the Bay Area and L.A. far from complete.

In some cases, entire mobile home parks have been sold and then shuttered. In other instances, mobile home residents were gradually pushed out. For example, residents of Mission Valley Village in San Diego, a mobile home park for seniors, were slowly pushed out due to rising rent and decaying conditions according to a San Diego Reader article in 2010. Either way, the number of mobile home lots available for lower-income Californians has continued to shrink.

Some think this is just the beginning. Don Barr — a Palo Alto resident since 1990, Stanford professor and member of the Community Working Group involved in Buena Vista and other local projects — has noticed the disappearance of affordable housing, especially in the last decade. “Gradually, one by one, they (mobile home parks in California) are going to be shut down,” Barr said. “It’s not feasible financially to create new ones.”

Kramon draws to a close by saying, the following.

Top five at-risk counties for the disappearance of affordable housing:

§  Los Angeles County: 24,739 units

§  San Diego: 5,392 units

§  Orange County: 4,112 units

§  San Francisco: 3,997 units

§  Santa Clara: 2,380 units

(Source: California Department of Housing and Community Development)

And that’s all that Kramon wrote on this manufactured home community industry focused topic. Again, our prior report on the Buena Vista community, with numerous industry reactions provided on-the-record, is linked here.

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

(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


Flashback Friday – Political Obstacles, Reality Checks, Industry Cohesion and Successe$$

April 14th, 2017 Comments off

Original image still from Movie, Jerry McGuire,
Meme from Seeking Alpha, Graphic/Collage credit,

Good news and analysis writers don’t begin with the punch line, but some rules were meant to be periodically broken.

Most manufactured housing professionals would far prefer not to deal with politics or complex regulatory issues. They are in business or working for a company to earn a good living.  That said…

With about 7 percent of the nation living in a pre-HUD Code mobile home, or post-code manufactured home, imagine a municipal council where 33 percent of their elected officials are manufactured home owners who love the industry. A place where the local Chamber has met and embraced their manufactured home community operation as an asset. Where businesses are cross promoting each other, including the quality, affordable manufactured home lifestyle.  Can you see how a very-real place like that would help professionals earn more while having happy customers?

That will be the profitable fast-forward part of this Daily Business News and analysis article.

But this being a Flashback Friday, let’s go back in time about three years, and then dot the i’s from that point forward, using precise examples and benchmarks.


There have been no mobile homes built in the U.S. for over 40 years. This is one of several topics that manufactured home industry professionals could be hammering home with public officials, media and potential home buyers. People don’t clamor to live in a trailer house or mobile home. But once home shoppers understand that manufactured housing is legally and qualitatively different, they often open up – and in many cases – make the decision to invest in a modern manufactured home. Share the article linked above to learn more.

Selected Flashbacks, from Three to Two Years Ago

The proverbial views from 35,000 feet are found in the videos below, which allows one to dive into potent examples of how things were then, as seen through the lens of the first 6 videos below.

Each of these videos demonstrates the positive, pro-industry stance of MHProNews, and how at that time, there was a reasonably good, professional working relationship with the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI), its members and this publication.

Joe Stegmayer – Cavco Industries Chairman and CEO, prior MHI Chairman


Nathan Smith – SSK Communities, prior MHI Chairman



Rick Robinson – MHI General Counsel, Author


ICYMI – two of my favorite lines from this video:

If you like politics, you’ll love my books, and if you hate politics, I kill politicians.” – Rick Robinson.

 “I truly lived in a mobile home, in those days, my house was on wheels, and my car was on blocks.” – Rick Robinson.

Richard A. “Dick” Jennison – MHI President, CEO



Dick Ernst – MHI Financial Services Division Chairman, FinMarkUSA finance consultant



MHI President Jennison’s now famous, “Great Publication” video…



There are dozens of other possible examples, but the first obvious takeaway is that MHProNews and MHLivingNews have been pro-association: this has included MHI, MHARR, NFIB and state associations.  That doesn’t mean a blanket endorsement of everything that everyone at every association has ever said or done.  Rather, it’s a factual acknowledgement of the reality that in a complex American legal and political society today, associations can perform an invaluable service — one that especially smaller operators would have a difficult time accomplishing on their own…


Click image above if you’ve missed that popular report.

…so that businesses can spend more time serving the public and earning more money.


MHI, MHARR, MHEC logos, are each the property of their respective associations, and are shown here under fair use guidelines.

Fast Forward

Today, the relationship with some of the MHI staff and the industry’s largest, and most popular trade media has turned frosty. Why?  Did that frostiness precede published exposes?

Why has the relationship with MHARR, several state associations, various companies and MHProNews improved during that same period? Are there connections between those contrasting realities?

This writer has an unfair advantage in answering such questions, because I listened and watched as MHI President and CEO Richard A. ‘Dick’ Jennison went from several calls and messages a week – just over three years ago – to suddenly, unilaterally stopping positive engagement altogether.  Those or other possible allegations won’t be the focus of today’s report.

By contrast, there has always been regular contact with MHARR, even during periods where MHProNews took editorial positions different than theirs. Isn’t that how it should be? The relationship with state associations has generally been cordial, warm, friendly, to good. But again, when there were differences, that didn’t keep associations or trade media to be in sharp conflict with each other.

The focus of this Friday Flashback is the reality that MHLivingNews and MHProNews have worked to promote items useful and beneficial to MHI, MHARR, other associations/their respective members – as well as non-aligned companies.  We’ve done so since our inception, and have continually done so for years.

NewManufacturedHousingAsPercentageOfNewExistingHomeSales2016CreditManufacturedHousingIndustryDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews500xSo as Dick Ernst said in his video above, when Tony Kovach in his role as a commentator has taken a position seen as controversial, it has always been with the long term view of the industry in mind.  Tony and the MHLivingNews/MHProNews team believe in manufactured housing, believe in the value of other forms of prefab and modular homes and believe that consumers and business interests work best when in alignment.

We as pro-Industry trade publishers don’t let push-back or negativity keep us from covering the good, bad or ugly. See the second part of the industry professional’s potent statement, linked below.

Need to be Pro-Industry, Pro-Consumer

The president of a national operation with numerous locations from coast-to-coast said the following to MHProNews yesterday.

They’re probably pissed bc of the old trade association mantra – you’re either with us or against us.”

The off-the record message was a mix of encouragement and that person’s own critical analysis of those who don’t see the value of offering balanced, independent, manufactured housing industry news and commentary.

Let’s deal with the realities of the business . . . and trust that the broader public and our customer base will appreciate the honesty and reward us with more business,” that president wrote. “Thriving industries at the end of the day deliver a strong value proposition.  Let’s focus on doing that!”

The number of MHI, MHARR, and other association members who actively read, follow. and support the analysis offered by MHProNews is growing, as is the industry’s overall readership of the industry’s largest and most-trusted trade media.

Recent Examples of Pro-Industry Activity, Which Aim to Advance Manufactured Housing

The following are examples of dozens of such interviews that spotlight insights which can spark greater interest by investors, professionals, politicos, and the home buying public at large.

Remember that teaser at the top? About the professional who now has 1/3 of the seats for his city council with manufactured home owners? Listen to that backstory, in the video below.

Where does the industry have strong upside potential? The next video points in a direction that will dovetail with the video above.

One more additional, new video will be added here in the next few days, please check back.




Click image above to see report and related video.

Promised Update – New Video

Bombshell?! Programming Notice

Next week, we plan what some will view as a bombshell expose of what attorneys who have reviewed the matter have deemed an illegal activity.

Once published, MHProNews plans to hand the unsolicited, relevant documents provided to us over to federal officials.

Watch for that report. “We Provide, You Decide.” ©

Bottom Lines

There are a growing number of operations in manufactured housing that understand that local HUD Code retailers and communities could be growing at profitable, sustainable, higher double-digit or even triple-digit annual rates.

That would mean that:

  • as community vacancies drop, values would rise,
    • Retailer profits would grow,
    • HUD Code production and profits would grow,
    • More lending,
    • More insurance,
    • more transportation, more installations, more anchors, ‘skirting’ (foundation enclosures), more ACs, porches, steps, decks, other ancillary services, etc.
    • and for associations that get floor dues, more revenues.

The industry is well positioned for tremendous growth, but only if it honestly deals with the issues on the home buying public’s, mainstream media’s and public officials’ minds. To learn more about trillions in many housing industry opportunities, see the second report, linked here.


News has insightfully been called the first draft of history. We get perspective by looking back in the rear view mirror, seeing where we’ve been. We learn by stepping back and seeing how we got to where we are today. When driving that pickup, car, SUV or other vehicle, it’s safest and the odds of successful travel are best when we look ahead, check the mirrors on the sides and behind.

Cohesion is the best path ahead, where each party brings their particular skill and expertise to bear for the good of the many. ##

(Image credits are as shown.)

SoheylaKovachManufacturedHomeLivingNewsManufacturedHousingIndustryDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews-Submitted by Soheyla Kovach to the Daily Business News on


Emerging Mainstream News Trend? Are Positive Manufactured Home Reports Increasing?

September 27th, 2016 Comments off

Photo credits, Sunshine Homes – Red Bay AL, by ManufacturedHomes.

As the U.S. population rises, the steady growth of the mainstream housing market probably comes as a surprise to few. What may come as a surprise to veteran HUD Code manufactured housing professionals is that an affordable housing option –– manufactured homes! – has had a suddenly flurry of positive coverage, by mainstream news outlets.

Bloomberg, HousingWire, Realtor and Fox News have all recently published articles that celebrate the wonders of modern manufactured housing.

Bloomberg’s report showed that the average sales price for a new manufactured home could cost close to well less than half the cost of a site-built home.

So why aren’t more aspiring homeowners with a limited budget opting for manufactured homes? What can the industry do to supplement this recent influx of positive mainstream media reports?

Some possible answers to these questions—complete with photos, illustrations and videos – can be found at full story, linked here. ##

(Image credits are as shown above.)


Joe Dyton, for the Daily Business News, MHProNews.

Submitted by Joe Dyton for the Daily Business News, MHProNews.

Rent Control in Manufactured Home Communities Inhibits New Development

April 5th, 2016 Comments off

Sheila_Dey__publicceo__credit__exec_Dir_of_western_mhcaAs Sheila Dey, Executive Director of the Western Manufactured Housing Communities Association (WMHCA), writes in publicceo, rent control is not the solution to the affordable housing crisis now gripping the state. Comparing a doctor trying to fix a broken leg by applying a band-aid, she said, “Government imposed regulations and fees are leading contributors to why California is the most expensive place to live in the U.S., placing homeownership out of reach for many middle-class Californians.”

Noting that rent control has never expanded nor preserved affordable housing, manufactured home communities (MHCs) have become a favorite target, “as if private property owners are responsible for the housing crisis.” Instead, since MH is 30 percent less costly than site-built homes, government should focus on incentivizing the building of more MHCs.

MHCs offer all the good attributes of traditional neighborhoods: social interaction and the security of close neighbors, open space and proximity to necessary goods and services. Not all MHC residents are poor and in need of financial assistance.

MHCs operate like small villages or cities: instead of collecting taxes, community owners collect rents to pay for upkeep on roads, landscaping, lighting, utility lines and other essential services. Some communities have clubhouses, fitness and exercise facilities and swimming pools, all requiring maintenance.

She said, “When the government imposes a rent control ordinance that reduces or freezes rents at below market rates, it threatens a community’s quality of life. Just like cities, when revenue does not exceed expenses, essential services are reduced or eliminated altogether, and as the maintenance of neighborhoods decline, so do property values as blight takes root.”

Community owners who are under rent control may have to personally subsidize residents if the rents are not sufficient to provide sustainability, in which case they may be forced to sell their property, which in turn may force residents to leave.

This can also undercut the financial incentive for owners to expand or build new MHCs, which further limits the availability of affordability housing. Said Dey, “This is why state and local government regulators should abandon the current course of driving up the cost of housing with costly, unneeded regulations, only to hastily impose price controls that don’t work once homeownership becomes unattainable. It is time for real and meaningful solutions. Making housing construction less expensive and more plentiful so that the savings can be passed on to all prospective homeowners is a good place to start.” ##

(Photo credit: publicceo-Sheila Dey)

matthew-silver-daily-business-news-mhpronews-comArticle submitted by Matthew J. Silver to Daily Business News-MHProNews.

Modular Apartment Complex will be Bay Area’s First

March 10th, 2016 Comments off

calif__san_francisco_modular_houing_project__kalw_dot_org__creditWith the cost in San Francisco to build a new home running around $700,000 to $800,000, thereby pricing many middle-income and working class people out of the market, one company has begun building modular apartment buildings.

BRIDGE is a non-profit developer, and as such can receive government funding and tax credits to built affordable housing, and it is partnering with the Zeta factory in Sacramento to build the modules, as informs MHProNews.

Howard Koenig, ZETA’s CEO, said, “I actually believe that we are a central solution to the affordable housing crisis.” He has seen a lot of modular builders come and go, often put off by banks that are reluctant to finance something unfamiliar.

Real estate, we’re a conservative industry, we move slow,” says Adhi Nagraj, director of development at BRIDGE housing. However, he said, “We felt like there were enough case studies of smaller modular projects that we could jump in and take the risks.” The two firms are partnering on an affordable development in San Leandro, the first of its kind in the Bay Area.

While developer Patrick Kennedy says, “There’s a large graveyard of bankrupt developers that pursued (modular),” he acknowledges the concept has a bright future but it is now in its infancy and mistakes are bound to happen. “When modular projects go wrong, they go wrong in a very big way and usually a very expensive way,” he says.

Meanwhile, the San Leandro project is moving forward for people who make half of the median income in the area. The housing will be home to families earning $40,000 a year. So far, 18,000 people have applied to live in this new development, which translates into thousands and thousands of residents in the Bay Area who continue to seek affordable housing. ##

(Photo credit:–modular apartment building in San Leandro, Calif.)

matthew-silver-daily-business-news-mhpronews-comArticle submitted by Matthew J. Silver to Daily Business News-MHProNews.

Vanishing affordability for housing in Chicago and beyond?

November 13th, 2014 Comments off

thebroadwaystack-modularhomes-credit=realdeal-posted-dailybusinessnews-mhpronews-com-Affordable housing is vanishing in Chicago, write’s Andrew Geer, vice president and Chicago market leader of Enterprise Community Partners inCrain’s Chicago Business. Half of Chicago renters pay more than 30 percent of their income in rent. Thirty percent face housing insecurity, paying more than 50 percent of their income for housing.

Geer cities the Joint Center on Housing Studies of Harvard University, saying that, “…nearly 19 million families face housing insecurity. That number is at an all-time high, and it’s been steadily increasing for the past five years.”

Geer ads,The city’s most recent five-year housing plan for 2014-18, Bouncing Back, promises to invest $1.3 billion to produce or preserve 41,000 affordable homes. He says the Low Income Housing Tax Credit (LIHTC) is the main tool needed for housing affordability.



What Geer may not have considered – or be aware of – is the factory-built home option, and the wisdom of avoiding the temptation of de-facto picking winners and losers through regulations and tax policies. During arguably the most liberal federal administration in U.S. History – with deficits and debts mushrooming – is the precise time frame that the affordable housing crisis has hit Chicago and other cities.

The Broadway Stack and CityScapes are two of the possible examples of successfully using factory built homes in urban settings, each designed to blend into their respective urban settings. Even more affordable applications using manufactured homes are possible, so long as public officials and private business cooperate in intelligent ways.

Manufactured and modular home professional engagement early and often with planners and politicos is the baseline prerequisite to having a seat at the table in projects that could benefit local and federal budgets, create good jobs in our industry, while providing quality affordable homes too. ##

(Photo Credit – top: The Broadway Stack, RealDeal. Bottom: The Mills of CarthageMHLivingNews)