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Posts Tagged ‘bankruptcy’

Done! AG Bag$ Manufactured Modular Home Retailer

April 15th, 2019 Comments off

 

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Attorney General (AG) Lawrence Wasden has announced the conclusion of a consumer protection lawsuit against manufactured home retailer Hathaway Homes Group, LLC, and its former owner, Paul J. Hathaway,” the Idaho AG’s Office told the Daily Business News on MHProNews.Judgments entered…in Fremont County District Court restrict Hathaway Homes and Hathaway from doing business in Idaho.”

 

Reporting on the same case, “More than a dozen former customers told the Post Register in recent years they were treated unfairly by Hathaway Homes Group. They said Hathaway cheated them in one way or another.” Hathaway declined comment.

According to the Idaho State Journal:

  • Hathaway Homes Group and All Terrain LLC (another company that Hathaway owned) and Hathaway himself are undergoing Chapter 7 bankruptcy liquidation.
  • Recent court documents show continued liquidation efforts. Wells Fargo moved to repossess Hathaway’s office in St. Anthony. And auctions are being held for property that Hathaway owned through his businesses.
  • The liquidations are attempting to repay the millions of dollars of debts that Hathaway owes to his former creditors, the largest of which (about $3.8 million) is owed to TAG Lending in Utah.
  • According to an April 2018 court disclosure document, creditors had unsecured claims against Hathaway and his businesses totaling more than $8.2 million.”

 

Here is the balance of the media statement, continued from the above, from the Idaho AG’s office.

 

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On March 29, 2019, Hathaway signed a settlement agreement with the Office of the Attorney General. The settlement and final judgment were filed for the court’s approval on April 9. Once approved and the final judgment signed, starting May 1, Hathaway will be prohibited from:

  • advertising or selling new or used manufactured homes to Idaho consumers or misrepresenting his authorization to do so; and
  • advertising or selling new or used manufactured homes from within Idaho, unless he’s properly licensed and works under a state-licensed business entity.

“The financial and emotional toll Mr. Hathaway’s alleged fraudulent actions have had on consumers cannot be quantified,” Wasden said. “While the conclusion of this case does not restore what consumers lost, it is intended to prevent Mr. Hathaway from causing others similar harm in the future.”

The Attorney General’s Consumer Protection Division started its investigation in early 2017. Hathaway customers reported hundreds of thousands of dollars in losses. Customers alleged that Hathaway Homes accepted their down payments for new, unbuilt manufactured and modular homes that were never ordered from manufacturers. Customers also alleged Hathaway misrepresented the conditions of his used homes and failed to perform the warranty work on his installed homes.

Wasden filed a lawsuit against Hathaway Homes and Hathaway under the Idaho Consumer Protection Act in September 2018. Hathaway Homes, which was under the control of a bankruptcy trustee, did not appear in the case, and a default judgment was entered on April 2, 2019. The default judgment prohibits Hathaway Homes from doing business in Idaho except to the extent necessary to complete the bankruptcy matter.

Wasden’s office will monitor Hathaway’s future business activities. Anyone who observes Hathaway violating the settlement may file a complaint with the office.

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A prior report by MHProNews on this case can be accessed via the linked text-image box below.

 

AG’s Hathaway Lawsuit OK’d

 

This isn’t the only legal issue brewing in MHVille.  MHProNews has been notified about allegations involving a major Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) member.  We’re providing that firm an opportunity to respond, before we proceed with a report.

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“Jail Him!” NPR’s “Mobile Home Park Owners Can Spoil An Affordable American Dream” Refuted

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Modular Company Purchased Out of Bankruptcy

February 15th, 2017 Comments off
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M Space Modular Unit. Credit: Modular Home Coach.

Vesta Modular and Housing Solutions Inc., a portfolio company of Birmingham-based Simon Group Holdings, has purchased Salt Lake City-based M Space Holdings LLC out of bankruptcy for $15.3 million.

In a story the Daily Business News originally covered last year, M Space filed for bankruptcy in May 2016, blaming the decision by the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries in 2014 to not cut oil production, which lead to a steep cut in oil prices and a decline rents the company was receiving from its modular housing units in the shale fields of North Dakota.

The company stated monthly revenue from those units fell from $440,000 a month in late 2014 to about $104,000 a month by the spring of 2016.

This fall in revenue left M Space unable to service its debt.

According to Crain’s Detroit, Vesta beat out three other bidders for M Space, which holds more than $100 million in assets, including 1,700 modular housing units, office-space trailers and temporary classrooms around the country.

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Sam Simon. Credit: Atlas Oil.

This is the minnow eating the fish,” said Sam Simon, founder of Atlas Oil Co. in Taylor and CEO of Simon Group Holdings.

I’m a big believer that business is all about the buy, not the sell, and this was a great buy for us.

Simon said Vesta will close M Space’s Salt Lake City office but will retain most of its employees, growing its head count from six to about 20.

Soaring Pine Capital LLC, a funding arm of Simon Group Holdings, funded the acquisition.

Prior to the auction, Vesta owned about 300 modular units, including 76 modular classroom units it purchased out of bankruptcy in Florida and then immediately leased to the schools.

(Image credits are as shown above.)

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RC Williams, for Daily Business News, MHProNews.

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

Manufactured Home Community Bankruptcy Puts Residents in Limbo

November 1st, 2016 Comments off
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A storm forms over Valley View Estates. Credit: Google.

Residents of Valley View Estates in Archibald, Penn. are in a state of limbo. On the surface, the culprit is bankruptcy. Digging deeper, what caused the bankruptcy appears to be a case of mismanagement.

According to The Times-Tribune, park owners Margaret Mary Barrett and Egan Enterprises, Inc. filed for bankruptcy protection in February. Barrett inherited the business and the community — which is populated with aging pre-HUD code trailers and mobile homes — when her husband died; but according to her attorney, she has never seen any profit from it. Her son, Eugene Egan, had been in charge of operations.

From my review of the finances, it doesn’t look like the park’s been managed well,” said Barrett’s attorney, John DiGiamberardino.

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John DiGiamberardino. Credit: CDL Law.

Residents told The Times-Tribune they had never met Barrett, having paid rent and made maintenance requests exclusively to Egan.

The community was in the news in September 2015, when Egan failed to pay the community’s water bill and Pennsylvania American Water Co. suspended service. A temporary water tank was set up in the middle of the park until the issue was resolved.

It turned out the issues were much deeper.

A few months prior to the issue with Pennsylvania American Water Co., residents received letters from the Lackawanna County tax office. The letters warned if they didn’t pay thousands of dollars in unpaid property taxes for the homes, which are separate from the land, their homes would be sold via a tax upset sale.

I don’t believe any of the trailers have proper titles,said Robert H. Holber, a bankruptcy trustee appointed by the U.S. Department of Justice. “Many residents moved in with rent-to-own agreements, but they never received bills of sale and were unclear on who should be paying the taxes.

With the condition of the homes, officials say it is unlikely that they would be purchased at auction.

“Unless the county tax claim office gets express permission from the bankruptcy court, [the homes] may not be sold before the bankruptcy case concludes,” DiGiamberardino said.

According to The Times-Tribune, about 45 homes in the community are sagging and aged, patched together with plastic and plywood, and have junk piled up high around them.

As the trustee, Holber now pays the water, garbage collection and sewer bills. He says the rent checks that come in are the only revenue to keep resources going.

In fact, the failure to pay rent has a direct, unfortunate relationship to any repairs that I might be willing to make,” he said. “There’s just no money.

 

The Residents

 

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A resident at Valley View Estates in September 2015. Credit: The Times-Tribune.

For residents of Valley View Estates, actions – and reactions – vary.

Ronald James told The Times-Tribune that he happily continues to pay his $280 monthly rent.

He says he’s lived at the park since 1972. His father, a plumber, installed the park’s first water lines.

You don’t live nowhere for free, do you?” said James. “Where else are you going to go for $280?

Others like James agree and say they appreciate a low-cost residence and work to keep their lots and homes clean, but say others in the community bring bad elements, such as drugs and other problems.

It’s not a bad place,” said resident Joe Hager. “There’s a lot of nice people in here, but there’s a lot of not-nice people in here.

Resident Becky Pidich, who like others has an uncertain future at Valley View, freely admits that she stopped paying her rent some time ago.

Holber said that he could evict residents who don’t pay rent, but is sympathetic to their situation.

I don’t know what I’m going to do,” he said. “People should pay their rent, but I understand it’s a tough situation.

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A Valley View Estates resident using the temporary water system, September 2015. Credit: The Times-Tribune.

After an upset sale conducted in September of 2015 resulted in no homes being sold, Lackawanna County tax claims Director Ron Koldjeski negotiated deals with individual residents, the borough and Valley View School District to offer residents their homes in a private sale.

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Ron Koldjeski. Official Photo.

Residents could pay $500 and watch the tax liability disappear,” said Koldjeski.

Some took the offer, but the program halted amid the bankruptcy proceedings.

What’s Next?

While residents remain in limbo, Archibald borough manager Jack Giordano says that he’s received interest from buyers, and hopes that any buyer would have experience operating a manufactured home community.

There’s a need for that type of housing,” Giordano said. “If they’re willing to make sure the people bring their properties up to code and run the park appropriately, it would be great.

The Daily Business News has covered similar situations in Manassas, Virginia and San Antonio, Texas recently. ##

(Image credits are as shown above.)

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RC Williams, for Daily Business News, MHProNews.

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

Former Fuqua Homes Plant Sold

January 24th, 2014 Comments off

The 125,000 square foot industrial space in Bend, Oregon at one time occupied by Fuqua Homes, Inc. has been sold to a hedge fund manager and his wife for $2.7 million. The couple will likely develop it into a multi-tenant facility, according to bendbulletin.com. Fuqua Homes built manufactured and modular homes at the site for over 40 years, but their employment fell from 330 workers in 2006 to 50 in 2010. MHProNews.com has learned involuntary bankruptcy, and complaints to the Oregon Department of Justice that Fuqua failed to deliver homes that had been paid for, led to the company’s eventual demise. Dallas-based Plains Capital sued the company in December, 2011 to recoup over $8 million in loans and eventually received the Bend plant in a foreclosure proceeding.

(Photo credit: Ryan Bennecke/bendbulletin.com)

Couple unable to Register Manufactured Home

May 7th, 2013 Comments off

MHProNews has learned from kelownacapnews in British Columbia, Canada, a letter aimed at elected officials from a couple who own a manufactured home is appealing a ruling based on a numbering system that prevents them from registering their homes in the Manufactured Home Registry. Their homes meet all the requirements but is one number different from what the Ministry of Finance allows. Without registration they cannot obtain a mortgage, hire a realtor, access equity in their home, or even declare bankruptcy. They are both on fixed incomes, but without the registration number they are unable to pay mounting medical expenses, and conceivably face homelessness if the situation continues. Kelowna is located in south central British Columbia.

(Image credit: Wikipedia)

New Home Construction Tops One Million

April 16th, 2013 Comments off

As MHProNews has learned from CNNMoney, the seasonally-adjusted annual rate (SAAR) of housing starts topped one million in March for the first time since June 2008, 1.4 million, seven percent better than Feb. 2013 and a 47 percent improvement since last March, primarily attributable to the growth in multifamily construction (five or more units). The rental market is growing due to younger workers who have been living with their parents are moving into rentals as the job market picks up. Former homeowners who experienced foreclosure and/or bankruptcy continue to enter the rental market. Kevin Finkel, of Resource Real Estate, owner of 24,000 rental units, says the shortage will last for years. “We have had a very weak supply of apartments for almost 20 years now,” he says. The rising cost of supplies and shortage of construction workers could, however, dampen the recovery.

(Photo credit: nakedphilly)

Letting the Act Expire Could Cost Underwater Borrowers

December 24th, 2012 Comments off

While Republicans and Democrats continue squabbling over the impending fiscal cliff, the Mortgage Forgiveness Debt Relief Act of 2007 is due to expire at the end of the year, which would cause homeowners to begin paying taxes on the part of their mortgage that is forgiven in a short sale, foreclosure or principal reduction. As an example, CNNMoney points out if a borrower owes $150,000 on a house and sells it for $100,000 at a foreclosure auction, they might owe taxes on the $50,000 that is forgiven. With over 50,000 borrowers losing their homes to foreclosure monthly, and short sales amounting to half a million each year, the dollars add up quickly. If a person is in bankruptcy or insolvent, the amount would be forgiven. Senate Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus estimates the extension would cost the government $1.3 billion for one year. As MHProNews has learned, while some industry officials say it goes against loss mitigation efforts, some in Congress might see its expiration as a cost-cutting measure to trim the deficit.

(Image credit: news365today)

Former MH Plant to Reopen as Modular Facility

November 22nd, 2012 Comments off

TheAlmaTimes tells MHProNews the former Fleetwood manufactured home plant in Alma, Georgia that began production in 1993 and closed July 2009 as the result of bankruptcy will reopen as a modular commercial manufacturing facility. Titan Modular Systems plans to hire 100 workers.

(Photo credit: TheAlmaTimes)

The End of Erdmore Estates

April 27th, 2012 Comments off

WOOD-TV reports from Edmore, Michigan the owner of scrapped Erdmore Estates Mobile Home Park is in jail, and cannot respond to any violations. Corey Davy bought the community in 2008 in a bankruptcy sale after the state had revoked the previous owner’s license. Davy went to jail for two years for a drunk driving offense, and due to numerous violations Montcalm County condemned Erdmore Estates. Davy trashed the homes last summer, collected the scrap metal, and left the remains, which pose a health hazard. MHProNews.com has learned his lawyer says he has mental health issues. Davy is currently in jail for fighting with his wife. There are state and local laws and regulations governing the preparation, placement, and operation of manufactured housing communities but none that deal with them once they are abandoned.

(Photo credit: WOOD-TV)

Sun Asks for Variances at Cider Mill Crossings

December 1st, 2011 Comments off

WHMI in Livingston, Michigan, west of Detroit, reports the Tyrone Township Planning Commission approved zoning changes for Cider Mill Crossings MHC, recently purchased by Sun Communities, Inc. at a tax sale for just over $400,000. The previous owner left some projects short of completion before filing bankruptcy, and Sun asked for several variances in an attempt to make the MHC profitable. The variances deal with signage, maintenance of roads and sidewalks, and requirements controlling the age and condition of the manufactured homes on the property. If the changes are approved by the township board, Sun plans to begin construction in the Spring of 2012. According to the 22nd annual Allen Report, Sun ranks as the fourth largest land lease community (LLC) owner in North America with 136 communities comprising 47, 579 homesites.

(Photo credit: Parshallville Community Association)