Posts Tagged ‘apartments’

Google’s Going Modular Housing

June 15th, 2017 Comments off

GoogleGoingModularMercuryNewsManufacturedModularIndustryDailyBusinessNewsMHProNewsAs Matthew Silver and RC Williams have previously reported, the San Francisco Bay Area is no stranger to high housing costs, and the fact that several are turning to manufactured, prefab and modular projects to help meet their needs.

So, it’s no surprise that as Google, like other employers, are struggling for affordable housing for workers, that the tech giant is turning to prefab/modular construction to help meet their needs.

The tech giant plans to buy 300 units of modular housing to serve as temporary employee accommodations on its planned “Bay View” campus at NASA’s Moffett Field,” says the Mercury News.

Google thinks the savings may be in the 20-50% range over conventional building. While that would seem high to those in the factory built housing world, given the soaring costs in the Bay Area, might that be possible?

JohnIgoeManufacturedModularHousingDailyBusinessNewsResearchReportsDataMHProNewsAnything that can help us to move forward with a greater knowledge of how we can produce housing GoogleGoingModularMercuryPrefabWorkersApartmentsNewsManufacturedModularIndustryDailyBusinessNewsMHProNewsmore effectively is something we’re interested in,” said John Igoe, director of design and construction at Google, per Fox Business. “We absolutely are confident that it will work. Hopefully it doesn’t become false bravado.”

The deal is likely to be in the $25 million to $30 million range, said Rick Holliday, founder and chief executive of Factory OS. It would be that firm’s first order for the company.

Modular housing could be “a real game changer” for the Bay Area affordable housing crunch, said Matt Regan.  He’s the  senior vice-president of public policy at the Bay Area Council.  Google is a member business in that group.

In the factory environment you have more controls and more oversight, and it’s more efficient,” Regan said.

The end product is of the highest quality. It’s impossible to tell the difference between a modular construction project and a traditional project, other than that the modular goes up much quicker.”

What seems certain is that the status of factory building will get a lift from this and other projects, here in the U.S., and around the world. ##

(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.




Manufactured Home Community, Residents, Face Uncertain Future

March 30th, 2017 Comments off

The Chesterfield community. Credit: Patch.

In Chesterfield, Missouri, residents of the town’s only manufactured home community received some very shocking news this week.

According to News 4, residents of the Chesterfield Mobile Home Park could be losing their homes, if developers get their wish – they want to build 300 apartments where the community currently sits.


It would uproot a lot of people. I don’t know where they would go. This is an affluent area,” said resident Cambria Ernstrom. She is worried about where her family will go after initially being attracted to the area for the good schools and cheap rent.

I’m concerned over possibly having to start over,said resident Winnie Hingherwitz, who turns 87 in May.

I recently relocated to Missouri from New Jersey to be closer to family.”


Credit: Google.

The residents of Chesterfield own their homes, but they lease the land underneath it.

Even though rumors of potential changes have been floating around, none of the residents appeared to be aware of the plan.

The company that is managing the community said that it is still under contract, but the owners did submit a rezoning request to build the apartments.

Chesterfield city officials said that they were unaware of what developers might offer residents to move out.

Officials say that a public hearing will be scheduled, but no date or time has been announced.


MH Industry Professionals Speak

As situations like the one in Chesterfield continue to play out around the country, leaders in the manufactured housing industry provided MHProNews their take.


Jay Hamilton, Executive Director, Georgia Manufactured Housing Associatoin (GMHA).

As communities become surrounded and engulfed by restaurants, Hilton Hotels, stadiums, big box stores, airports, residential and commercial developments,” Jay Hamilton, Georgia Manufactured Housing Associations’ executive director told MHProNews, “property taxes begin exceeding the total revenue from renting spaces.

Sam Zell. Credit: WSJ.

The struggle over community owner’s property rights vs. land-lease community resident rights continues. Equity LifeStyle Communities Chairman Sam Zell’s view, published exclusively on MHProNews on that topic, are linked here.

In commenting on such cases, ROC USA President Paul Bradley told MHProNews,  “How can we promote homeownership and sell new homes on leased land and at the same time close communities? It’s like selling tickets to a zoo where ‘only 1 in a 100 are eaten by the lions!’”

paul bradley roc usa founder cedit

Paul Bradley. photo credit: Fosters.

Bradley believes that the community sector should identify those communities that may be subject to closure and redevelopment, and differentiate them between those land-lease locations that have no plans to be anything but a manufactured home community. See his statement, linked here. ##


(Image credits are as shown above.)



RC Williams, for Daily Business News, MHProNews.

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

NAHB and MHARR agree, even $1000 price increase Reduces potential Home Buyers

August 25th, 2014 Comments off

nahb-news-image-creditThe National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) released a study, cited by MHARR, that points to the fact that every $1,000 in price increase on a home decreases the number of potential home buyers by some 200,000 nationally.

The study opens with the statement, “One of the often overlooked impacts of building regulations is their effect on housing affordability. Every time a local or higher level government issues a new construction regulation it raises construction costs by, for example, increasing the price of construction permits or impact fees. Higher costs invariably translate into higher home prices and higher prices in turn disqualify more households from being able to afford new homes.”

The report by Natalia S. Siniavskaia, Ph.D. was released as Special Studies, on August 1, 2014, by the Economics and Housing Policy division of the NAHB. A download of the full report is available, at this link here.The median new home price for the United States is set at $275,000 for 2014. It is based on monthly median new home prices reported by the Census Bureau over 2013 and the first four months of 2014.”

Compare that median cost for conventional home building to the median price of a single section manufactured home (MH) at $42,200 or multi-sectional MH at $78,600, also per U.S. Census Bureau figures, click here for the full report by state and region.


This issue dovetails with concerns expressed by HUD Code manufactured home builders, expressed in this article linked below.

HUD Code Manufactured Home Producers Want Regulatory Fairness and Stronger Congressional Oversight

The above was also mentioned by the Manufactured Housing Association of Regulator Reform (MHARR) in their commentary on this topic.

Forward thinking manufactured housing professionals understand that while HUD Code MH can uniquely serve the lowest rungs of the housing ladder, future opportunities for growth depends upon the ability of industry professionals to individually and/or collectively to attract more cash and credit worthy customers currently served by apartments, rental housing, real estate agents or conventional housing builders. ##

(Image credits: NAHBeNews, NAHB Price Out Study)

Multifamily Home Building on the Rise

February 5th, 2014 Comments off

Panelists during a press conference at the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) International Builders’ Show (IBS) in Las Vegas says strong demand for apartments will increase over the next several years. Says NAHB chief economist David Crowe, “The multifamily market has rebounded significantly from its trough in 2009 at 82,000 multifamily housing starts to 340,000 in 2013. NAHB is forecasting 363,000 multifamily housing starts in 2015, which is above the previous longer term average of 340,000 as more young adults prefer renting.” As has been informed, he says the strong demand for multifamily is due to three factors: First, production is catching up to the normal flow which was hampered during the housing bubble; second, the rising demographic of the echo boomers, born after 1980, will continue to grow in size; and third, young adults who normally might have chosen homeownership are hindered by tight lending standards, a slow employment market and lower entry salaries. Crowe adds, “The share of households that rent rather than own has increased steadily since 2004 and will likely continue until jobs are more secure, mortgages more accessible and careers more stable.”

(Photo credit:–new multifamily building)

Micro Modular Apartments: Sanity versus Salary?

December 23rd, 2013 Comments off

While New York City and other crowded urban areas attracting young professionals are turning to micro modular apartments of 200 to 400 square feet–as MHProNews posted here May 27, 2013–mental health professional are citing psychological problems that may result from such tight quarters. “Sure, these micro-apartments may be fantastic for young professionals in their 20’s,” Dak Kopec, director of design for human health at Boston Architectural College told the Atlantic. “But they definitely can be unhealthy for older people, say in their 30’s and 40’s, who face different stress factors that can make tight living conditions a problem.” Not only do children need more space to flourish, but a cramped living environment may lead to alcoholism, domestic abuse and claustrophobia. As Vincent Mancuso says in, “The apartments are supposed to enable single city dwellers access to a cheaper alternative to sky-high rents, but tenants might be choosing between their sanity and their salaries.”

Multifamily Building Spikes in 2012

October 18th, 2013 Comments off

The Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA) reports last year 2,083 multifamily housing lenders provided $146.1 billion in new loans to apartment buildings with five or more units, representing a 33 percent gain from 2011. The mortgages went to a variety of investors, the biggest dollar volume share, 40 percent, going to Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. Measuring number of loans, 80 percent went to commercial bank, thrift and credit union portfolios. As nationalmortgageprofessional reports, top multifamily dollar lender was JP Morgan Chase, followed by Wells Fargo and CBRE Capital Markets, Inc. Jamie Woodwell of MBA tells MHProNews, “In many ways, we were in a golden age of multifamily finance in 2012, that to a large extent continues today. Low interest rates, strong property fundamentals, and increasing multifamily property prices are all supporting a very favorable lending environment.”

(Image credit: GRO Architects–Jackson Green, multifamily modular apartments in Jersey City, New Jersey)

Champion Marks its Tenth Project in North Dakota

October 15th, 2013 Comments off

Champion Home Builders has been contracted to supply two modular apartment buildings to North Dakota’s Bakken oil formation, providing Watford City and Williston with over 100 apartments and townhomes, according to Marking Champion’s ninth and tenth project in the area, the Wolf Run Village in Watford City will consist of six buildings each with seven units, and the 72 unit Prairie Vista in Williston will accommodate sleeping space for 288 people. Phyllis Knight, president of Champion Commercial Structures, says, “The energy boom across the US and Canada has provided Champion with a significant opportunity to create cost, time and energy efficient housing solutions in very small communities that are struggling to keep up with immediate housing demand increases. Given this need, North American developers have embraced the modular building method rather quickly, and we at Champion are proud to play our part in that fundamental change in the way we build.” MHProNews knows Champion manufactures homes and buildings at 30 different facilities in North America and the United Kingdom.

(Photo credit: Champion Homes–modular home)

Modular Apartments Set for Long Island

September 24th, 2013 Comments off

While New York City’s first modular apartment building, the six-story, 28-unit Stack recently opened its doors, Hempstead, Long Island in Nassau County will field its first occupants of a modular apartment building next month (October, 2013). The 29-unit complex, Village Lofts, will feature wide plank maple floors as well as Energy Star appliances, a courtyard, elevator, parking, a media screening room and on-site storage. Newsday reports the apartments range in size from 810 square feet to 1,557 square feet with monthly rental rates of $1,400 to $2,550. MHProNews has learned six of the modular units will be set aside as affordable housing.

(Photo credit: Village Lofts–Hempstead, Long Island NY)

Modular Builder in Montana Shuts Doors

September 23rd, 2013 Comments off

Canadian-American Structured Solutions (CASS) opened in May 2012 in Billings, Montana vowing to provide 100 jobs, as it filled modular housing orders for workers in the Bakken oil fields in western North Dakota. Updating a story MHProNews posted Jan. 26, 2013 regarding the company’s temporary layoff of 30 employees due to a shortage of materials, on Friday, Sept. 13 the front door was padlocked and the employee entrance was boarded up, leaving am alleged trail of unpaid employees, modular homes with faulty plumbing, and previous legal claims still owing. One builder reports receiving his modular units for 12 apartments months late and with major work needed. He says water sprayed from the fixtures when the faucets were turned on. CASS allegedly canceled its medical insurance in January without telling employees, according to One employee who called the company handling the payroll was told the contract was canceled two weeks prior.  CFO Larry Nelson and CEO Lorne Wallace reportedly did not respond to requests for comments.

(Photo credit: Katharine MacKnight/kurl-tv–CASS modular homes)

Modular Apartments may House Students

September 18th, 2013 Comments off

In an ongoing discussion between students and the administration at Georgetown University in Washington, D. C. regarding additional housing, students objected to satellite housing which would require shuttles to and from campus for several miles, one as far away as Clarendon, Virginia. The Georgetown University Student Association (GUSA), according to (the student newspaper), has voted in favor of a resolution calling on the administration to consult student representatives before any major decision is made. MHProNews has learned one of the options still on the table is siting modular apartments in the McDonough Gymnasium parking lot.

(Photo credit: Andrea Johnson/minodailynews–student housing at Minot State University in North Dakota)