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

June 14th, 2019 Comments off

 

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

 

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

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

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

 

 

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

 

 

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

 

 

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

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

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

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

 

BloombergShipmentProductionDataManufacturedHousingMHProNews2019-05-16_1057

 

Logic says there are only a few possibilities.

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

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

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

 

Is there evidence for this?

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

 

 

What? During an affordable housing crisis?

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

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

 

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

 

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

 

MHCommunitiesOfAZNealTHaneyPresidentWhyTheyQuitManufacturedHousingInstituteMHIDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews600

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

 

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

 

 

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

 

FollowThe MoneyPayMoreAttentionToWhatPeopleDothanwhatTheySaySpySea72MartyLavinYachtManufacturedHousingINdustryProMHProNews

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

 

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

 

SoTheAssociationMHIIsNotThereFortheIndustryUnlesstheinterestsoftheBigBoysJointheIndustry'sMartyLavinMHIAwardWinnerQuoteMHProNews

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

 

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

 

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

 

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

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

 

ManufacturedHousingAssocRegulatoryReformMHARRApril2019ProductionShipmentReportDailyBUsinessNewsMHproNews

 

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

 

 

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

 

SmokingGunEvidenceOfAntiTrustMonopolisticCollusionMoatClaytonHomesKevinClayton21stMortgageTimWilliamsWarrenBuffettMHLivingNewsMHProNews

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

 

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

 

TimWilliams21stMortgageCorpGoodArgumentsQuoteRespondEveryStoryDailyBusinessNewsMHproNews

 

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

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

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

There’s more in the links below.

 

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

 

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

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

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

“Starting” Dip in Home Sales, New Crisis Says Housing Experts

March 1st, 2018 Comments off

AdamDeSanctisLawrenceYunNationalAssocRealtorsNARYouTubeDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews546x431

Washington, D.C. The economy and job growth are strong, says Adam DeSanctis, with the National Association of Realtors ® (NAR) communications team.

 

So why did contract signings for new homes take a “startling” dip in January?

There’s

  • bad news for many Americans,
  • potentially hopeful news for opportunities for the manufactured home industry’s investors and professionals,
  • and then head scratching issues in HUD Code manufactured housing that the NAR report directly and indirectly raises.

After seeing a modest three-month rise in activity, pending home sales cooled considerably in January to their lowest level in over three years, according to the National Association of Realtors®. All major regions experienced monthly and annual declines in contract signings last month,” said the NAR in a media statement.

The Pending Home Sales Index ® is a forward-looking indicator based on contract signings.

It fell 4.7 percent to 104.6 in January from a downwardly revised 109.8 in December 2017.

After last month’s retreat, the index is now 3.8 percent below a year ago and at its lowest level since October 2014 (104.1).

Lawrence Yun, NAR chief economist, says pending sales took a noticeable step back to start 2018.

The economy is in great shape, most local job markets are very strong and incomes are slowly rising, but there’s little doubt last month’s retreat in contract signings occurred because of woefully low supply levels and the sudden increase in mortgage rates,” Yun said.

The lower end of the market continues to feel the brunt of these supply and affordability impediments. With the cost of buying a home getting more expensive and not enough inventory, some prospective buyers are either waiting until listings increase come spring or now having to delay their search entirely to save up for a larger down payment, stated Yun.

This is one of several areas that manufactured housing could be providing a much needed boost for the overall housing market.

ValuableWordsCommentaryDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

HUD’s regulatory review could lead to solutions, if the agency dig deeply into the issues that are holding the industry back from being able to meet the needs that Yun’s research – and that of other housing experts – reveals. http://www.mhpronews.com/blogs/daily-business-news/hud-reg-review-could-yield-housing-econ-boom-plus-mh-market-update/

But arguably,

  • controversies surrounding the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) and some of their major players,
  • plus over a decade of improper actions at the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD),
  • and other interrelated issues has yielded a negative storm that harms the interests of millions of Americans,
  • while also acting as a limiting factor for many in the manufactured home industry.

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

Added Yun, “Even though contract signings were down, Realtors® indicated that buyer traffic in most areas was up January compared to a year ago1. The exception was likely in the Northeast, where the frigid cold snap the first two weeks of the month may have contributed some to the region’s large decline.”

The number of available listings at the end of January was at an all-time low for the month and a startling 9.5 percent below a year ago, says NAR.

In addition to new home construction making progress closer to its historical annual average of 1.5 million starts,

As new multi-family supply catches up with demand and slows rents, some large investors may begin putting their holdings of affordable single-family homes up for sale, which would be great news, particularly for first-time buyers,” said Yun.

LawrenceYunNARShort8.3MillionHousingUnitsRisingRentsHousingPricesCuredOnlyByMoreBuilding

In 2018, Yun forecasts for existing-home sales to be around 5.50 million – roughly unchanged from 2017 (5.51 million). The national median existing-home price this year is expected to increase around 2.7 percent. In 2017, existing sales increased 1.1 percent and prices rose 5.8 percent.

Note that the NAR video has related information, but the quotes above are not in the video.

If these underlying issues aren’t addressed, doesn’t the Obama era data – linked below – indicate the economic harm caused, and perhaps reflect a potentially avoidably economic stall?

YIMBY vs. NIMBY, Obama Admin Concept Could Unlock $1.95 Trillion Annually, HUD & MH Impact

 

Manufactured Housing and the NAR Data, What Does it Mean?

The issues raised by the NAR’s experts point to concerns that MHProNews has raised for years, and with increased intensity in roughly the past 18 months.

When manufactured housing has the advantage of the enhanced preemption called for by the HUD Code, why are MHI and some key larger players delaying a meaningful public and media engagement effort that would allow the current products of manufactured home producers to be better understood, and thus more widely embraced?

Is it incompetence, or some other agenda?

While everyone makes mistakes, no one is accusing MHI’s top staff or leaders to be fools.

So rule incompetence out.

Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) Gives Written Responses – “Part of a Rigged, Corrupt System”

Therefore, when HUD Code manufactured home sales are already being made – albeit at relatively modest levels – to the kinds of buyers that would seek a site-built home, why has MHI foot dragged and failed to take robust steps, which their budget makes possible?

Last year at Tunica, manufactured home lender Credit Human’s long-time industry veteran, Barry Noffsinger laid out the case for how some professionals are already selling homes to those who might otherwise buy a conventional house.

Related at this link.

Meanwhile, the Manufactured Housing Association for Regulatory Reform (MHARR) and others in the industry – including MHI members – share insights with MHProNews that MHI routinely ducks out on responding to; why?  If there is nothing for MHI’s leadership to hide from, why do they duck pro-industry, pro-growth, pro-consumer trade media questions?

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Home Sales slide in December, But Rose Overall in 2017, Import for Manufactured Housing

January 24th, 2018 Comments off

DecemberHousingSnapshotNARGraphicDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews525

While conventional housing remains hot, the statistics that follow continue to spell “opportunity” for visionary, and long-term thinkers in manufactured housing.

 

Existing-home sales [EHS] subsided in most of the country in December, but 2017 as a whole edged up 1.1 percent and ended up being the best year for sales in 11 years,” according to the National Association of Realtors® (NAR).

Total existing-home sales…which are completed transactions that include single-family homes, townhomes, condominiums and co-ops, increased 1.1 percent in 2017 to a 5.51 million sales pace and surpassed 2016 (5.45 million) as the highest since 2006 (6.48 million),” the NAR said in a release to the Daily Business News.

 

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In December, existing-home sales slipped 3.6 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 5.57 million from a downwardly revised 5.78 million in November. After last month’s decline, sales are still 1.1 percent above a year ago.”

LawrenceYunNARShort8.3MillionHousingUnitsRisingRentsHousingPricesCuredOnlyByMoreBuilding

The quotes above are from the special Daily Business News report, linked below.

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

Lawrence Yun, NAR chief economist, said the housing market performed remarkably well for the U.S. economy in 2017, with substantial wealth gains for homeowners and historically low distressed property sales.

Existing sales concluded the year on a softer note, but they were guided higher these last 12 months by a multi-year streak of exceptional job growth, which ignited buyer demand,” said Yun. “At the same time, market conditions were far from perfect. New listings struggled to keep up with what was sold very quickly, and buying became less affordable in a large swath of the country. These two factors ultimately muted what should have been a stronger sales pace.”

Added Yun, “Closings scaled back in most areas last month for this same reason. Affordability pressures persisted, and the pool of interested buyers at the end of the year significantly outweighed what was available for sale.”

 

ExistingHomeSalesEHSNationalAssocRealtorsNARDailyBuisnessNewsMHProNews

 

The median existing-home price for all housing types [not including manufactured housing] in December was $246,800, up 5.8 percent from December 2016 ($233,300). December’s price increase marks the 70th straight month of year-over-year gains.

Total housing inventory at the end of December dropped 11.4 percent to 1.48 million existing homes available for sale, and is now 10.3 percent lower than a year ago (1.65 million) and has fallen year-over-year for 31 consecutive months. Unsold inventory is at a 3.2-month supply at the current sales pace, which is down from 3.6 months a year ago and is the lowest level since NAR began tracking in 1999.

Those boosts in home values could be significant for those who are selling manufactured homes to retirees or other ‘downsizers.’

The lack of supply over the past year has been eye-opening and is why, even with strong job creation pushing wages higher, home price gains – at 5.8 percent nationally in 2017 – doubled the pace of income growth and were even swifter in several markets,” said Yun.

First-time buyers were 32 percent of sales in December, which is up from 29 percent in November and unchanged from a year ago.

U.S. Association, Plus Canadian-Owned U.S. based MH Lender Release Video, Facts on Modern Manufactured Homes and MH Homebuyers

With the typical manufactured home price hovering around $70,000, the opportunities for manufactured housing pros are strong.

KYPs, and the $64 Billion Dollar Question-Monday Morning Manufactured Housing Sale$ Meeting

But there is a clear need to tap into the kinds of strategies that will attract and ‘convert’ conventional housing shoppers into manufactured home buyers.  ## (News, analysis, and commentary.)

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Latest Consumer Confidence Survey, and Why It Matters to Manufactured Housing

October 16th, 2017 Comments off

RichardCurtinChiefEconomistUnivMichiganConsumerSurveyCenterDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews410It is axiomatic that consumer confidence is an important driver of big ticket sales, including the sales of manufactured homes.

Without consumer confidence, a prospective home buyer may delay or even cancel a purchase, as veteran manufactured home professionals know from first-hand experience.

When publicly traded manufactured home producers and others involved in the manufactured home sector make their periodic statements, they often include a reference to economic conditions, including consumer confidence.

Latest Survey of Consumer Confidence

Per their release, “Consumer sentiment surged in early October, reaching its highest level since the start of 2004.” So said the University of Michigan Surveys of Consumers.

 

The data indicate a robust outlook for consumer spending that extends the current expansion to at least mid 2018, which would mark the 2nd longest expansion since the mid 1800’s,” Chief Economist Richard Curtin told MHProNews in their release.

ConsumerConfidenceUnivMIOct2017CenterConsumerSurveysDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

Their Survey Research Center stated that, “While the early October surge indicates greater optimism about the future course of the economy, it also reflects an unmistakable sense among consumers that economic prospects are now about as good as could be expected.”

IndexConsumerSentimentUnivMISurveyCenterDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

Good Economic Ties Ahead…

This “as good as it gets” outlook is supported by a moderation in the expected pace of growth in both personal finances and the overall economy, accompanied by a growing sense that, even with this moderation, it would still mean the continuation of good economic times,” Curtin said.

While most Democratic, some in the GOP, and other opponents of the Trump Administration would argue otherwise, such third party research indciates that the president is “winning” on behalf of American business and the public.

For political watchers, in the words of long-time Clinton adviser and Democratic operative, James Carville, “It’s the economy, stupid.”

Economic progress may or may not help every Republican, as Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX) recently warned.  But Bloomberg and others who see the Trump Train as advancing towards re-election in 2020 – at this time – look to be correct.

JamesCarvilleItsTheEconomyStupidQuoteCreditTegile-DailyBusinessNewsMHProNews600

Curtin noted that “consumers anticipate low unemployment, low inflation, small increases in interest rates, and most importantly, modest income gains in the year ahead.”

The Michigan University consumer sentiment survey summary concluded by saying, “It is this acceptance of lackluster growth rates in personal income and in the overall economy that signifies that consumers have accepted, however reluctantly, limits on the pace of improving prospects for living standards.”

There are concerns that the “DC Swamp” disruptive, reform agenda of the Trump Administration could be derailed.

But it is precisely because of those looming concerns why:

  • the National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB),

WashingtonDCUSCapitolBuildingPixabayManufacturedHousingIndustryProfessionalNewsMHProNews

and others involved in the MH space are prodding policy makers with their various requests to keep the economic expansion and regulatory reforms going. ## (News, analysis.)

Note: Related article about Steve Forbes on Tax Reform, linked here.

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

May 25th, 2017 Comments off
housingstartsseebiggestgainsintenyearscreditmenofvalue-postedtothedailybusinessnewsmhpronewsmhlivingnews

A site built home in progress. The segment is struggling with cost, demand and time. Credit: Men of Value.

New data from the National Association of Realtors (NAR) shows more proof that the manufactured housing industry stands at the cusp of significant opportunity.

According to HousingWire, existing homes stayed on the market for less time in April than in any month since 2011, but tight inventory drove a decline in existing home sales over March’s record pace.

 

Demand from buyers is still far exceeding the available supply, leading to both the decline in existing home sales and the fact that homes are flying off the market,” said Lawrence Yun, NAR’s chief economist.

USExistingHomesSalesReachHighestLevelinNineYearscreditTheBusinessJournals-postedtothedailybusinessnewsmhpronewsmhlivingnews

Lawrence Yun. Credit: The Business Journals.

The NAR report also shows that homes typically stayed on the market in April for a new record low of 29 days, down from 34 days in March and 39 days in April 2016.

April marks the first time since NAR tracking the time that a home stays on market that the time on market has been less than 30 days. Also of note, 52 percent of homes sold in the month of April were on the market for less than a month, a new high.

Total existing-home sales, which are classified as completed transactions that include single-family homes, townhomes, condominiums and co-ops, fell 2.3 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 5.57 million in April from a downwardly revised 5.7 million in March.

Last month’s dip in closings was somewhat expected given that there was such a strong sales increase in March at 4.2 percent, and new and existing inventory is not keeping up with the fast pace homes are coming off the market,” said Yun.

Demand is easily outstripping supply in most of the country and it’s stymieing many prospective buyers from finding a home to purchase.”

Yun also shared that that the median existing-home price for all housing types in April was $244,800, up 6% percent from April 2016 ($230,900), and that every major region, minus the Midwest, saw a decline in existing sales.

ManufacturedHousingHighlyEffectiveUrbanInfillcreditCandysDirt-postedtothedailybusinessnewsmhpronewsmhlivingnews

The inside of a Fourleaf Properties manufactured home in Dallas, Texas. Credit: Candy’s Dirt.

Realtors continue to voice the frustration their clients are experiencing because of the insufficient number of homes for sale,” said Yun.

Homes in the lower- and mid-market price range are hard to find in most markets, and when one is listed for sale, interest is immediate and multiple offers are nudging the eventual sales prices higher.”

 

Door Wide Open for Manufactured Housing Industry

The challenges referenced by Yun show a site built housing market that is, by all accounts, upside down. Demand for affordable housing is outstripping supply, keeping those who would otherwise be able to realize the dream of home ownership from doing so.

StanPoseySunshineHomesRedBayAL-postedDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

Stan Posey, Sales Manager, Sunshine Homes.

When the National Association of Realtors chief economist says there are more buyers than existing homes available on the market, that should be a huge signal to manufactured and modular home professionals,” said Stan Posey, sales manager at Sunshine Homes of Red Bay, AL.

We build residential style homes that target the site-built customer,” Posey said. “Some of our retailers and communities are doing very well by targeting the site-built customer.”

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Stan Dye, Star Homes, Cullman AL. Photo credit, still from Inside MH Road Show video.

For example,” Posey said, “our award-winning retailer, Stan Dye at Star Homes in Cullman, AL told Inside MH recently that about 70% of their buyers first owned a conventional stick-built house.”

Regular MHLivingNews readers and viewers discover that when home shoppers give a good, careful look at today’s residential style manufactured and modular homes, many are saying ‘yes.’

With interest rates rising, and more cities considering or being urged to accept manufactured homes as infill, the manufactured home industry’s opportunities are rising.

This is particularly true with the ‘residential side’ of the industry: homes boasting finished tape and textured models, and other conventional-housing style amenities.

SunshineHomesRedBayALModelHomeExteriorPostedManufacturedHomeDailyBusinessnewsMHProNews

From Sunshine Homes website, provided under fair use guidelines.

Stan Dye told the Inside MH Road Show that residential style homes have a stronger appeal to the site-built buyer, as opposed to the “shade and shelter” or entry-level manufactured housing – that may use vinyl over gypsum (VOG) or painted, but untextured drywall – along with less costly fixtures and finishes.

As the Daily Business News has covered, the Manufactured Housing Association for Regulatory Reform has made similar points, and is calling for a full implementation of the law – notably the Manufactured Housing Improvement Act of 2000 (MHIA 2000) – as a key way to fuel more industry sales to meet the demands of an affordable home-hungry public. ##

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RC Williams, MHProNews.

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

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Moves In U.S. Home Price Index

April 3rd, 2017 Comments off
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NAR headquarters, Washington, D.C. Credit: NAR.

New data from Case-Shiller shows that January home prices rose at the fastest rate since 2014. While this spells a win for sellers, it could eventually affect buyer demand.

According to the Wall Street Journal, home prices rose 5.9 percent in the 12 months ended in January, the strongest increase in 31 months, up from a 5.7 percent year-over-year increase reported in December.

The strong growth in prices poses a challenge for first-time buyers trying to get into the market this year.

This spring market looks to be heated. There are a far larger number of buyers chasing after fewer inventories, said Lawrence Yun, chief economist at the National Association of Realtors.

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Lawrence Yun. Credit: NAR.

Prices are easily outpacing people’s income growth” which is causing “consternation for renters who are trying to get into the homeownership market.

The markets with the most activity were in the northwest, with Seattle seeing an 11.3 percent increase, with Portland showing a 9.7 percent year-over-year gain and Denver with a 9.2 percent increase.

In September, home prices hit a new record high, driven by strong demand and a shortage of available homes. The number of homes for sale was down 7.1 percent in January compared with a year earlier.

Tight supplies and rising prices may be deterring some people from trading up to a larger house and also shrinking the number of households that can afford to buy at current price levels,” said David Blitzer, managing director at S&P Dow Jones Indices.

At some point, this process will force prices to level off and decline — however we don’t appear to be there yet.

In month-over-month numbers, the U.S. index rose 0.2 percent in January, while the 10-city average rose 0.3 percent and the 20-city average rose 0.2 percent.

Purchases of previously owned homes were down in both January and February, with tight inventory and rising prices frustrating would-be buyers. Existing homes sells declined 3.7% in February. ##

 

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RC Williams, for Daily Business News, MHProNews.

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

Who is Choosing Homeownership?

March 9th, 2017 Comments off
WhoisChoosingHomeownershipcreditTawbaWare-postedtothedailybusinessnewsmhpronewsmhlivingnews

NAR headquarters. Credit: TawbaWare.

A new survey from the National Association of Realtors (NAR), shows some rather interesting statistics, and opportunities for the manufactured housing industry.

According to Furniture Today, the 132-question survey, as a part of the 2017 Home Buyer and Seller Generational Trends study, showed that “Generation X” households are buying more homes, a growing number of Millennial and younger Baby Boomer households have children living at home, and more Millennials are buying outside of the city.

The study showed that an improving economy, multiple years of strong job growth and a notable increase in home values fueled a greater share of purchases from Generation X households over the past year.

Lost in this discussion are the numerous Generation X households who bought their first home, started a family and entered the middle part of their careers only to be rattled by job losses, falling home values and overall economic uncertainty during and after the Great Recession,” said Lawrence Yun, NAR chief economist.

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Lawrence Yun. Credit: The Business Journals.

This year’s survey reveals that debt and little or no equity in their home slowed many Gen X households from buying sooner.

Yun also said that recent Gen X buyers delayed buying longer than Millennials due to debt, and were also the most likely generation to have previously sold a distressed property, and want to sell earlier but couldn’t because their home was underwater.

Gen X sellers’ median tenure in their previous home was 10 years, which puts many of them selling a property they bought right around the time home values were on the precipice of declining,” said Yun.

Fortunately, the much stronger job market and 41 percent cumulative rise in home prices since 2011 have helped a growing number build enough equity to finally sell and trade up to a larger home. More Gen X sellers are expected this year and are definitely needed to ease the inventory shortages in much of the country.

The survey also showed that the increase in purchases from Gen X buyers this year, 28 percent, was the highest since 2014 and up from 26 percent in 2016.

Millennials represented the largest group of recent buyers for the fourth consecutive year at 34 percent, but their overall share was down slightly from a year ago, which was 35 percent.

In what has been a growing trend, younger boomers reportedly considered adult children when buying, with increases in the cost of rent in many areas is prompting many middle-aged parents to buy a home with their young adult children in mind.

Younger boomers were also surveyed as the most likely to purchase a multi-generational home, with the top reason being that children over 18 years old either moved back home or never left.

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Credit: NAR.

The job market is very healthy for young adults with a college education, but repaying student debt and dealing with ever-increasing rents on an entry-level salary are forcing many to either shack-up with several roommates or move back home,” said Yun.

This growing trend of delayed household formation is one of the main contributors to the nation’s low homeownership rate.

Also of note were responses from millennial buyers, as more have at least one child and also have a need for more space.

Breaking from prior trends, only 15 percent of millennial buyers bought in an urban area, which is down from 17 percent last year and 21 percent two years ago.

Millennial buyers, at 85 percent, were the most likely generation to view their home purchase as a good financial investment,” said Yun.WhoisChoosingHomeownershipcreditMHLivingNews-postedtothedailybusinessnewsmhpronewsmhlivingnews

These strong feelings bode well for even greater demand in the future as more Millennials settle down and begin raising families. A significant boost in new and existing inventory will go a long way to ensuring the opportunity is there for more of them to reach the market.

For more from the NAR, including MHProNews and MHLivingNews Publisher L.A. “Tony” Kovach’s report on the significant opportunities for manufactured housing, click here. ##

 

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RC Williams, for Daily Business News, MHProNews.

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

Small Business Optimism Index: January Results

February 17th, 2017 Comments off
SmallBusinessOptimismIndexJanuaryResultscreditOprah-postedtothedailybusinessnewsmhpronewsmhlivingnews

Credit: Oprah.

Almost one month into the Donald Trump administration, things continue to look up.

According to the National Federal of Independent Business (NFIB) survey, small business confidence, which saw the largest month-over-month increase in the survey’s history in December, has now reached its highest point in more than a decade.

 

 

The stunning climb in optimism after the election was significantly improved in

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Juanita Duggan. Credit, NFIB.

December and confirmed in January,” said NFIB President and CEO Juanita Duggan.

Small business owners like what they see so far from Washington.

The Index reached 105.9 in January, an increase of 0.1 points, the highest point since December 2004.

The continued surge in optimism is a welcome sign that economic growth is coming,” said NFIB Chief Economist Bill Dunkelberg.

The very positive expectations that we see in our data have already begun translating into hiring and spending in the small business sector.

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Credit: NFIB.

The NFIB survey is a monthly snapshot of small businesses in the U.S., which account for most private-sector jobs and about half of the country’s economic output. Economists look to the report for a read on domestic demand and to extrapolate hiring and wage trends in the broader economy.

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Credit: NFIB.

The January jobs report surprised pundits and disappointed critics, coming in strong and well ahead of ‘consensus,” said Dunkelberg.

NFIB survey results anticipated the strong showing as their optimism gets translated into hiring action. Gains in expected sales require more workers to produce output and handle sales. The increase in labor force participation was a welcome sign, suggesting that labor markets are not as tight as the unemployment rate indicates which went up, and that, as opportunities materialize and compensation rises, more workers will re-enter the labor force.

The report from the NFIB is based on a survey of 1,874 small business owners. According to the Small Business Administration (SBA), small companies represent 99 percent of all U.S. Employers.

We’ve had very low growth for years, mainly because small businesses have been tied down by regulations, taxes, and spiraling health insurance costs,” said Duggan.

Now they can see relief on the horizon, and they are much more optimistic about the future.

For more on last month’s NFIB survey and commentary from the manufactured housing industry, click here. ##

 

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RC Williams, for Daily Business News, MHProNews.

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

Zillow’s Predictions for U.S. Housing Market Under Donald Trump

November 29th, 2016 Comments off
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Credit: Newsmax.

With the election of Donald Trump, many are trying to predict what’s to come for the U.S. economy in 2017 and beyond.

Zillow recently shared its predictions for the U.S. housing market in 2017, including:

  • which demographic segment will have more homeowners,
  • that buyers may have to spend more as builder attempt to cover costs,
  • and how much home values may grow in 2017.

For those considering new construction in 2017, it’s worth considering the added cost that may come amidst ongoing construction labor shortages that could get worse if President-elect Trump follows through on his hardline stances on immigration and immigrant labor,” said Dr. Svenja Gudell, Zillow’s chief economist.

The firm thinks that the president-elect’s stated plan to deport criminal illegal aliens will hurt conventional construction labor shortages.

Zillow predicts more millennial buyers. There are 80 million millennials in the U.S., so millennials will drive up the homeownership rate. The online real estate tracking and data firm also believes that rental rate increases will slow in 2017.

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Photo credit, Business Journal.

Based on Zillow’s survey of over 100 economic and housing experts, the company thinks home U.S. values will grow 3.6 percent in 2017. National home values have risen 4.8 percent so far in 2016.

For a related story on the NAHB view and how manufactured housing pros can respond to the construction labor shortage, click here. ##

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RC Williams, for Daily Business News, MHProNews.

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

U.S. Homebuilder Confidence, November Report

November 26th, 2016 Comments off
ushomebuilderconfidenceremainsstudyinnovembercreditpeoplespunditdaily-postedtothedailybusinessnewsmhpronewsmhlivingnews

Credit: People’s Pundit Daily.

The National Association of Home Builders (NAHB)/Wells Fargo builder sentiment index was released on November 16th and remained unchanged at 63. The index is two points below September’s reading, which was the highest in nearly a year. Readings above 50 indicate that builders view sales conditions as good rather than poor.

Ongoing job creation, rising incomes and attractive mortgage rates are supporting demand in the single-family housing sector,” said Robert Dietz, the NAHB’s chief economist. “This will help keep housing on a steady, upward glide path in the months ahead.

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Robert Dietz. Credit Twitter.

Builders’ view of current sales held steady from last month, while a gauge of traffic by prospective buyers edged higher. But their outlook for sales over the next six months declined slightly.

Even so, builders remain optimistic overall about new home sales, which are running ahead of last year’s pace.

The index shows that sales of new U.S. homes hit a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 593,000 units as of September, which is up nearly 30 per cent from a year ago. Sales of new homes were up 13 per cent through the first nine months of this year compared to the same period in 2015.

A healthy job market and low interest rates have bolstered demand for new homes and fueled construction of single-family homes this year. Still, builders complain new construction is being hampered by a shortage of skilled labor and rising costs for ready-to-build land parcels in many markets.  That reality, and other factors, have been cited by MHProNews as reasons why factory-home building could be poised to gain market share, given the right steps by industry companies and leaders.

NAHB Logo

 

This month’s NAHB builder index was based on 325 respondents.

Though new homes represent only a fraction of the housing market, they have an outsized impact on the economy. Each house conventionally built creates an average of three jobs for a year and generates about $90,000 in tax revenue, per NAHB data. By comparision, each manufactured home built ads about one job to the economy, because of greater efficency. ##

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RC Williams, for Daily Business News, MHProNews.

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