Posts Tagged ‘Bakken’

Manufactured Home Owners Could Be in for a Surprise

May 16th, 2017 Comments off

A manufactured home in Montana. Credit: Zillow.

In Montana’s Yellowstone County, manufactured home owners can look to receive their tax assessments a bit later this year.

The reason? According to the Billings Gazette, many are expected to show a large increase in value.

The major differences from last year’s assessments are that 2017 is a reappraisal year and, for the first time, the agency is using a comparable sales method for valuing most mobile homes [sic],” said Robin Rude, the regional manager for the Montana Department of Revenue.

Mobile home [sic] values are expected to increase an average of 15 percent to 19 percent, although some values decrease as well.”

Rude said that the assessments are delayed this year because of the 2017 legislative session, where pending legislation could have affected tax rates and the agency waited to see if it needed to make changes.


A manufactured home in Montana. Credit: Zillow.

The assessments sent will tell homeowners the new value of the manufactured home, the 2016 value and how to estimate taxes based on 2016 mill levies, which do not include special levies.

Homeowners who are dissatisfied with the new value will have 30 days to file for an informal review with the DOR.

In past years, the DOR has used a cost method for appraising mobile homes in Yellowstone County. That approach reviewed cost tables and depreciation to determine a value.

For the 2017 cycle, DOR is using a comparable sales model, which determines value based on sales of similar mobile homes.

Yellowstone County never had enough sales to develop a comparable sales model until recently,” said Rude.

Other larger counties, like Gallatin, Lewis and Clark, Missoula and Cascade counties, developed comparable sales models in 2015 and have been testing the approach.”

That approach is due to the number of homes increasing, in part from oil and gas development in the Bakken fields and North Dakota.

The Daily Business News has covered manufactured housing in the region extensively, including a report from Matthew J. Silver which showed seven states, according to, actually saw their median ago lowered, and five of those are involved in oil and gas exploration—North and South Dakota, Montana, Wyoming and Oklahoma.


That story is linked here. ##


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RC Williams, MHProNews.

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


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Manufactured Home Owners Get Special Surprise

March 30th, 2017 Comments off

Credit: Bismarck Tribune.

In Bismarck, North Dakota, a long running discussion about special assessments provided manufactured home owners a surprise.

One that they weren’t necessarily looking for.

According to FOX West Dakota, some manufactured home property managers were surprised to learn they were paying more than traditional homeowners on special assessments.

Well they’re paying the same level for taxes as other conventional homes. They don’t get the same services and they are assessed at a higher ratio,” said Myron Atkinson, owner of the Tatley Meadows home community.

By rule, anything classified as commercial property pays special assessments at a two to one rate. Manufactured homes recently received a slight reduction, spurred by a group represented by Atkinson. The Daily Business News covered that story here.

There is a compromise made for manufactured home parks [sic] that they charge somewhere between one and two, or a 1.5 factor for street related special assessments,” said Gabe Schell, City Engineer for Bismarck.

Usually the commercial properties have a higher property tax value to them and have more benefit, we would say, from having an infrastructure network.”


Credit: MH Village.

Even though his group made some progress, Atkinson says they just want what’s fair.

We’re not asking that manufactured homeowners get a break. We’re asking that everyone gets treated the same, said Atkinson.

Right now, things aren’t.”

The city has opted to create a task force to evaluate special assessments in the city, and the task force will take a look at how the city uses and charges special assessments and will report their findings to the city council and mayor.


Sam Zell, credit, Forbes.

For more on the region, including ELS Chairman Sam Zell’s plans to double down on his previous investment in North Dakota’s Bakken play, click 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


Sam Zell Makes New Play?

March 6th, 2017 Comments off

A stretch of the Dakota Access Pipeline. Credit: OilPrice.

Sam Zell is no stranger to success, or “knowing where the money is.

It appears he’s found his next target.

According to the Bloomberg Quint, the billionaire real-estate investor and chairman of Equity LifeStyle Properties (ELS) is joining Continental Resources Inc.’s Harold Hamm in the growing list of enthusiasts of Oklahoma’s Stack shale formation.

Zell made an investment in the region recently, and said that he sees “awesome prospects for the oil-producing area,” in a Bloomberg TV interview.

Zell also said that he plans to double down on his previous investment in North Dakota’s Bakken play, in anticipation of the approval of the Dakota Access pipeline. The project cleared its last regulatory hurdle after President Donald Trump took office.


Sam Zell, credit, Forbes.

As Daily Business News readers are already aware, we have covered progress in the Bakken region extensively, including mounting real estate losses during a downturn in 2016.

The region is going through another drilling boom, and appears to offer good returns at a $50 oil price.

Trump’s administration is likely to be very positive for the business community and the energy industry specifically,” said Zell.

OPEC’s agreement to cut production is positive for oil producers and oil investments all over the world, including North America.

Zell also provided his take on what impact Saudi Arabia had on the situation.

If you look at the crash in the price of oil, what you really saw was Saudi Arabia showing the rest of the oil-producing world what life could be like with uncontrolled output,” said Zell.


Credit: Drudge Report.

OPEC officials have hailed implementation of the deal as “excellent,” but also said that they were still waiting for evidence of its success in reducing the global oil glut.

Saudi Arabia inflicted a significant amount of pain leading to the agreement,said Zell.

And it’s unlikely producers will cheat this time.

A five-nation committee said OPEC achieved more than 90 percent of its promised cutbacks in January and the group’s partners implemented almost 60 percent.

Zell has been in the news recently, including a session at a conference in Florida, where he spoke about the “staggering economic opportunity” for the U.S. under President Donald Trump. That story is linked here. ##


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RC Williams, for Daily Business News, MHProNews.

Submitted by RC Williams to the Daily Business News, MHProNews

County Levies Stiff Fine in Dakota, as Trump Primes XL Pipeline

January 25th, 2017 Comments off

Williston, North Dakota. Credit: Williston Wire.

In a case that dates back to 2014, Williams County, North Dakota officials have re-instituted a $1.2 million fine against Western Petroleum LLC and its parent company, Pilot Thomas Logistics.

According to the Williston Herald, the fine is a result of failing to pay fees and comply with zoning regulations while it was operating company housing several years ago, including modular homes and RV’s.

County commissioners voted unanimously to levy the fine on January 16th, and the amount levies a $1,000 fine per day for each day that the company has failed to pay fees for non-renewal of a conditional use permit, being out of compliance with zoning regulations and operating temporary housing.

Back in 2014, the county commission imposed a $29.6 million fine against Western Petroleum after officials discovered the lapses. That fine was calculated by determining how many days each unit had been out of compliance, at a rate of $1,000 per day.


Credit: Western Petroleum, Pilot Logistics.

In response, the company filed suit in district court, where a judge upheld the fine. Attorneys then appealed the decision to the state supreme court, which ruled that the amount was calculated improperly.

In the appeals court opinion, the fine can be assessed daily against a site, and cannot be based on the number of residential units present.

An attorney for Pilot Thomas Logistics pointed out that the company has also filed a suit in federal court, and a judge has issued an injunction as the case progresses through the court system.

It’s our contention that any action by this board would be in violation of a federal court order,” said Andrew Shedlock after recommending that the commission wait to decide on fines.

Commission chairman David Montgomery disagrees, and says the fines are unrelated to the case, as they were levied before the company took the issue to court.

These fees were imposed and were not paid,” said Montgomery.

Daily Business News writer Matthew J. Silver has covered manufactured and modular housing activity in North Dakota extensively, including temporary modular housing being restricted in the Bakken oilfield. That story is linked here.


Trump Makes Moves on Keystone XL, Dakota Access Pipelines



President Donald Trump signs the Executive Order for the Keystone XL pipeline. Credit: Fox News.

President Donald Trump took executive action yesterday, signing orders to advance both the Keystone XL and Dakota access pipelines, reversing Obama Administration actions to stop them.

According to CNBC, the orders will make it easier for TransCanada to construct the Keystone XL pipeline and for Energy Transfer Partners to build the final uncompleted portion of the Dakota Access pipeline.

The executive actions are subject to terms and conditions to be negotiated by the United States,” said President Trump. ##

(Image credits are as shown above.)


RC Williams, for Daily Business News, MHProNews.

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

CBRE to Auction off Modular Workforce Housing

November 18th, 2015 Comments off

montana_modular_workforce_housing__sydney__bakken__creditA 100-unit full service modular lodging complex in Sydney, Montana will go on the online auction block Dec. 3, 2015, with the bidding starting at $2,000,000, conducted by CBRE. Built in 2013, Eagles Lodging housed oilfield workers in the Bakken Shale and Williston Basin in North Dakota, according to bakken.

The property is being sold subject to a land lease, which the lessee may cancel. The new owner may operate the business or terminate the lease and move the modular buildings elsewhere. In Jan., 2015 the 100 units were appraised at $7 million. Daily, weekly and monthly rentals are available.

In addition to the one and two bedroom fully-furnished modular homes, there are laundry facilities, recreation and fitness areas, a restaurant as well as internet and cable access.

MHProNews understands online bidding lasts for two hours, all done by the internet. Bidders will be required to send a registration deposit of $75,000 in advance of being eligible to bid. The sale may be related to the downturn in demand for domestic oil production. ##

(Photo credit: bakken–Eagles Lodging, modular workforce housing in Sydney, Montana)

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

Affordable Housing still Wanting in the Bakken Oilfields area of North Dakota

September 4th, 2014 Comments off

mod__watford_city__nd__credit_alana_semuels__la_times_mctWhile the oil boom in the Bakken Formation area near Watford City, North Dakota has brought a lot of quick prosperity to many local residents, the character of the town is changing due to the growth of the 1,400 residents six years ago to 10,000 today. As The tells MHProNews, all manner of commercial enterprises are expanding as the 2,400 oil wells that have been drilled in McKenzie County to reach the deposits 10,000 feet below have attracted thousands of oil field workers and providers of industrial and consumer goods and services.

Many married men arrived alone, but are now bringing their families in, creating a huge influx of people whose major wish is to find affordable housing. A two-bedroom travel trailer rents for $2,000 or more a month. MHProNews has posted numerous stories of modular workforce housing being built in the western North Dakota region, as well as the rise in demand for manufactured housing. Louise Tanner, manager of Watford City Tourist Park, home to a half-dozen RVs, noting the small campground as a minor version of the town’s growth, said, “People are waiting for civilization to catch up with this wild thing that’s been happening here.” ##

(Photo credit: Elena Semuels/–Watford City, North Dakota)

Target on Target for another Modular Mancamp in the Bakken

April 23rd, 2014 Comments off

Target Logistics, a division of Algeco Scotsman, which already operates a dozen modular mancamps in North Dakota for oilfield workers, recently received an almost $30 million contract to provide accommodations for hundreds more oilfield workers in ND over the next three years. Some energy companies that have operated their own workforce housing operations have experienced problems with undesirable activities among workers, but Target monitors their comings and goings during off hours, banning alcohol and overnight guests (including spouses) in the private rooms, according to With a one bedroom apartment in Williston, ND averaging $2,394 a month, out of range for most field employees, workers are willing to put up with the restrictions. Responding to the oil boom in the Bakken oilfield in ND and other energy rich sites, Target has grown from 15 employees doing $3.5 million in revenue in 2008 to 465 employees bringing in $164 million in 2013. The company has filled 5,300 beds in North American modular workforce housing, as has learned. ##

(Photo credit: Casy Page–Kari Andrew and Mary Pipla inspect modular mancamp housing in Williston, ND)

Modular Mixed with Stick-built

March 18th, 2013 Comments off

MHProNews has learned from grandforksherald Genco Bakken Development is planning 200 affordable housing units in Grand Forks, ND in the northeast corner of the state. Genco finalized the purchased of 71 lots, named Thames Court, from the Grand Forks Housing Authority this month and intends to begin as soon as the ground thaws. The development will be a mix of modular homes from Champion Homes and stick-built, with 10 single-family, 16 twin, and 45 townhome lots. Single-family homes will range from $140,000 to $230,000. Genco previously built similar developments in Williston and Minot, ND nearer the oil fields where the demand for housing is very strong.

(Photo credit: Champion Homes–modular)

Housing Shortage has Unintended Consequences

February 22nd, 2013 Comments off

As MHProNews has reported in the Daily Business News for several years now, the oil boom in western North Dakota’s Bakken Region has brought an influx of factory-built housing to the area, including modular man camps, manufactured and modular homes, even some Federal Emergency Management Agency trailers to house employees of Williston State University in Williston. Bloomberg reports employees of one of the energy companies live in modular housing trucked over from the Winter Olympics in Vancouver. The housing vacancy rate and the unemployment rate are both under one percent, leading some major employers to purchase housing for their employees, or risk not having workers who will have been lured away to the higher-paying jobs in the oil fields. A hospital is building a 68-unit apartment building just for its employees; a local bank is charging employees one-third of the market rate for townhomes it bought just to retain staff. Some restaurants are only open certain days because of a staff shortage. With the oil boom expected to last for a while, North Dakota is now the second largest crude producer in the nation behind Texas.

(Photo credit: dl-online/Homark Homes–modular man camps))

Ramtech Building Systems Adds New Breed of Modular

January 28th, 2012 Comments off

Ramtech Building Systems LogoWith the explosive growth in the demand for quarters and camps for the oil and gas industry, Ramtech Building Systems of Mansfield, Texas announced recently that the company is expanding their existing line of product offerings to provide additional modular buildings that will meet the rigors of working in remote, severe, or unfriendly drilling and mining locations while providing for the features and amenities demanded in a very competitive labor environment. Additional standard and custom floor plan designs for small and large man camps, workforce and oilfield housing, offices, sleepers, tool pushers, dining and mess halls, recreation facilities, infirmaries, and wash cars and laundries have been developed to meet the needs of both the end-user operators and turnkey logistics and property management groups involved in the rapidly expanding areas for oil and gas drilling around the continental United States. Ramtech is currently in negotiations with several potential clients for facilities designated for locations in the Bakken Oil Shale Formation in North Dakota and the Eagle Ford Shale Gas Play in South Texas.

(Image Credit: Ramtech Building Systems)