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Posts Tagged ‘City Council’

MHC Rezoned, Affordable Housing Affected

May 2nd, 2017 Comments off
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The community in question, Fayetteville, Arkansas. Credit: NWA Online.

In Fayetteville, Arkansas, a manufactured home community is scheduled to see its sunset – and community officials say that it’s a disturbing trend that’s affecting affordable housing across the nation.

According to NWA Online, the City Council approved a rezoning proposal from Dallas based real estate investors and developers Tait Coates and Tommy Kilbride, that will allow re-development of the nine acres.

 

The Niblock family, owners of the land since the late 70’s, said it’s time.

The property has passed its life expectancy,” said George Niblock Jr.

Residents own their homes and pay about $250 per month to rent their lot, but several owe back rent.”

Niblock said that he also understands that the development will displace residents, but he and the new landowners will be working to make the transition as smooth as possible.

For a few of them, it’s going to be painful. There’s no perfect answer for it,” said Niblock.

We’re going to work with them directly,” said Coates. “We will keep an open dialogue with all of the tenants.”

City planning staff sees the area as ripe for development, in part because of its vicinity to the University of Arkansas, and a mix of commercial and residential development is in line with the city’s infill goals.

 

Challenges, Authority, Stigma

With redevelopment, comes the challenge of a loss of affordable housing, which is a major goal of the city’s 2030 plan.

Prior to approval for the rezoning, the Fayetteville Planning Commission asked council members to address the issue of gentrification in some way.

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Credit: Google.

City Attorney Kit Williams told the council that the city has limited authority and a landowner can utilize their property as they see fit, as long as they follow the zoning rules and lease agreements with residents.

I don’t know how we could do that [deal with the issue of gentrification] without taking away some of the property interest rights of the landlord and probably having to pay him for it,” said Williams.

There’s not anything I’m aware of, especially no ordinances we might have that would do anything that would be able to slow down what the landlord might be wanting to do.”

Williams also says that he’s seen the trend of communities disappearing over the years.

Trailer parks [sic] have disappeared throughout town with no proposals to replace them. I think this is due to rising property value within the city limits and the deteriorating nature of a manufactured home’s value,” said Williams.

City planning director Andrew Garner sees the issue as well.

I can’t recall in a dozen years with the city a single instance of a developer wanting to build a trailer park [sic],” said Garner.

A resident could place a mobile home [sic] on his property if it’s zoned as a Residential Agricultural district, but a trailer park [sic] requires a multi-family zoning, and even then it would only be allowed as a conditional use.”

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A video still from an unrelated Fayetteville City Council meeting. Credit: The Advocate.

A part of that challenge is in the stereotypes that persist.

Credit: MHI.

The trend in Fayetteville mimics what’s been happening nationally,” said MHI spokeswoman Patti Boerger.

The country hasn’t seen many new manufactured home communities developed in the past couple decades, but landowners with several acres sometimes place mobile homes on their properties. Manufactured and mobile homes today run the gamut of floor plans and typically are made with the same materials as on-site homes, all at far lower a cost.”

Boerger shared that tiny homes have also become more popular, but Kevin Hawks, owner of Hawks Homes, sees them as a fad.

They attract attention, but usually once customers do the math they figure they can get a better value with a single-wide trailer [sic],” said Hawks.

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A Hawks Home model. Credit: Hawks Homes.

You can drive through anywhere in east Arkansas and you can still see the old metal siding and metal roofs with tires on top to keep the roof from rumbling — what I call a trailer house [sic]. That is not what we build. I don’t even build metal-siding, metal-roof houses anymore. But, a lot of people have that stigma.”

For some members of the Fayetteville City Council, manufactured housing represents the solution to affordable housing.

It does offer home ownership to individuals who otherwise may not be able to afford it,” said Alderman Mark Kinion.

As long as it meets codes and standards and as long as it is compatible.”

For more on the myths and facts surrounding manufactured housing, and the opportunity for millions to achieve the American Dream of home ownership, click here. ##

(Image credits are as shown above, and when provided by third parties, are shared under fair use guidelines.)

 

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RC Williams, MHProNews.

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

Residents Facing Eviction Ask City Council for Lifeline

December 26th, 2016 Comments off
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East End Residents attend a Manassas city meeting in October. Credit: Potomac Local.

In a follow up to a story that the Daily Business News originally covered in October, hundreds of residents are now facing imminent eviction from the East End Mobile Home Park in Manassas, Virginia.

And, once again, they are asking the city council to help. But they feel that they are running out of time. The deadline is February 28th.

Residents say their painful saga has been going on for nearly a decade, as the property owner has neglected the community’s sewage system to the point that unless residents take action themselves, sewage comes up into their yards.

According to WJLA, in a move that city officials say they consider the “best of bad options,” the city council voted to buy the property for $1.86 million.

While the option looks good on the surface, it has a twist: the city says it cannot act as a landlord, and therefore the deal can’t close until all the residents are out.

Now residents fear that they will have nowhere to go or won’t be able to afford to move to more expensive housing in the area.

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A home at East End Mobile Home Park. Credit: Inside Nova.

Believe me, for some other people it may not be much, but for me – and a lot of my neighbors – it’s the whole world,” resident Crescencio Torres told the Manassas city council during the meeting.

City officials say that the current situation is unhealthy for residents and it cannot continue. They say they didn’t want to shut off water and sewer service, which would have led everyone to be evicted right away. Instead, the city opted to buy the property and make repairs, as the current owner does not have enough money to cover the expense.

During the meeting, residents asked the city and the council to pressure the owner to at least extend the deadline for them to be evicted.

While the mayor supports the idea, he says what the city can do is limited.

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Mayor Harry Parish II. Official Photo.

We have a contract and we’ve got to abide by that contract,” said Mayor Harry Parrish II. “There are opportunities for the owner to work with the citizens. And I think that’s where the action should be taken place today.

A group of residents wants to postpone the eviction date until August, including Melissa Watson who says that would help minimize the impact on children who must then change schools.

We’re going to be moving them when they’re prepping for these tests, and that’s going to be detrimental to their education,” said Watson.

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Randy Grumbine. Credit: LinkedIn.

Residents currently pay $600 or less a month at the community and some say they are finding it difficult to locate other places where they can move their manufactured homes. A representative for the city said the eviction date is not their decision because they do not yet own the property.

It is our hope that the city works with the tenants to find an equitable solution, said Randy Grumbine, Executive Director Virginia Manufactured and Modular Housing Association, told MHProNews. ##

(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.

City Council Approves Controversial Manufactured Housing Ordinance

December 14th, 2016 Comments off
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Linton city council. Official photo.

The Linton, Indiana City Council voted on December 12th to move forward with a manufacturing housing ordinance, which will require all future manufactured homes to be in a manufactured home community.

The controversial motion passed with a 3-2 vote, with council members Tony Richards and Linda Bedwell casting dissenting votes.

According to the GC Daily World, the conversation began in June when Mayor John Wilkes said the city needed to take action in creating an enforceable manufactured home ordinance in order to ensure the homes are properly hooked into the sanitation system and electricity. The mayor said there had been several complaints about manufactured homes in the city.

Since the discussion began, a number of versions of a proposed ordinance were presented, but were not successful.

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Mayor John Wilkes. Official Photo.

In November, as the Daily Business News covered here, Wilkes made the proposal to require all manufactured homes brought into the city to be placed in a manufactured home community. The proposal was passed after Mayor Wilkes broke the council’s 2-2 tie.

The formal ordinance was brought before the council on December 12th for adoption.

By requiring the manufactured homes to be placed in manufactured home communities, the community owner will be required to follow state mandates for sanitation and water supply.

The provisions set forth in the ordinance also extend to Amish cabins or “tiny houses.

According to the mayor, current manufactured homes are grandfathered in, but Councilwoman Linda Bedwell asked for clarification on the grandfather clause, including the fact if fire or certain types of disaster destroy a manufactured home, it could allow for the manufactured home to be replaced or rebuilt.

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Linton, Indiana. Credit: Google.

Mayor Wilkes opened the floor to public discussion before the vote was taken.

Jerry May, a local landlord, raised a few questions, including a possible violation of Senate Bill 6593.

The bill states, in part, “No city, town, code city or county may enact any statute or ordinance that directly or indirectly has the effect of discriminating against consumer choice in the placement or use of a home that does not apply equally to all homes.

Additionally, the bill also notes entities can require a manufactured house to be set on a permanent foundation, be up to state energy code and meeting other requirements for designated manufactured homes.

If I purchased a piece of property and built a pole barn to live in, would that be allowed?” asked another attendee.

City attorney John Rowe said the potential concerns could be litigated if needed.

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Too many cities and towns have an outdated view of manufactured homes, or are being pushed by residents who don’t understand the modern MH reality into taking actions like those noted in this town in IN. Until more of the public understands what inspector Becki Jackson does about modern manufactured homes, the incidents of such cases will continue. To see the Becki Jackson video and interview, click here or above.

A Strong Response

The Indiana Manufactured Housing Association (IMHA) became aware of this issue in late November based on local media reports,” said IMHA President Ron Breymier.

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Photo credit: The Legis Group

IMHA sent a letter to Mayor Wilkes and members of the Linton City Council advising them that their proposed ordinance would not be permissible under Indiana law.

Breymier shared Indiana Code IC 16-41-27-32 (b) which states the following:

A governmental body other than the state department of health may not regulate mobile homes or manufactured homes regarding habitability or minimum housing conditions unless the regulation is applicable in the same manner to other forms of residential housing in the jurisdiction.

Rather than an outright ban on the future placement of manufactured homes in Linton, which would be counter to Indiana law,” said Breymier, “IMHA recommended the city enforce the existing state law and make certain any additional manufactured homes seeking placement in Linton meet the same regulations that apply to other forms of residential housing.

Obviously, Mayor Wilkes and the Linton City Council chose ignore that advice and adopted the new ordinance. IMHA will discuss the matter with its board of directors and determine if there is anything further we can do to address this situation.

The Daily Business News has covered a number of NIMBY (Not-In-My-Back-Yard) cases recently, including one in Hutchinson, Kansas here.

It should also be noted that a close reading of the Manufactured Housing Improvement Act of 2000 provides for enhanced preemption, which ought to limit such local zoning efforts.

MHARR and state associations are often raising this issue, with one example in a case linked here. ##

(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.

City Weighs Repair Assistance Options for MH Community Residents

December 14th, 2016 Comments off
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Residents discuss their options in light of rent increases. Credit: East Bay Times.

Residents of a San Leandro, California manufactured home community are facing rent increases next month, but they may get assistance from city leaders through a proposed minor home repair program.

According to the East Bay Times, the proposal was presented by San Leandro staff at the City Council meeting on December 5th, and suggests partnering with nonprofit Rebuilding Together in nearby Oakland to exclusively help residents in the Trailer Haven Mobile Home and RV Park.

The program would be funded by $150,000 in city tax revenues from the 8.23-acre property and would focus on three key repair categories:

  • deferred maintenance,
  • health and safety fixes or upgrades,
  • and energy efficient upgrades, such as new windows or energy-efficient appliances.

 

The program’s goal is to cut key expenses for some residents and address potentially expensive fixes to their homes,” San Leandro Community Development Director Cynthia Battenberg told the council.

This is a way to assist owner-occupied mobile home [sic] units in taking care of their property and keeping their value.

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Trailer Haven RV and Mobile Home Park (marked.) Credit: Google.

The proposal comes after Trailer Haven residents approached the city, stating that rent increases set to take effect in January are excessive and may force some of them to move out.

The East Bay Times reports that the increases were imposed by the property’s new owners, San Leandro Mobile Home & RV Park LP, but property management representatives have said the increases are needed to offset deferred maintenance costs as well as taxes and fees that rose when they bought the site.

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Credit: Cascade Corporate Management.

Cascade Corporate Management, a Sacramento, California-based manufactured home community and RV park management company that oversees the Trailer Haven operations, notified residents of the rent increase in September, which averages about $117 per site, along with a $45 sewer and water charge.

Based on the response and the communication between our resident meetings, I can understand the impact that it’s going to have,” said Cascade Corporate Management quality control director Brock Kaveny to the city council.

I think it’s going to be nominal compared to some of the public concern. I think some of the concern was amplified with residents who weren’t even residents of our mobile home community.

Councilwoman Corina Lopez believes that a 15 to 25 percent rent increase is excessive and hopes the park’s new owners will adjust it.

Bring that amount down and smooth your increases over time so it’s more bearable for the people who are residing there,” said Lopez.

I understand that you have managing expenses and you’re looking to do some capital improvements, but this is quite significant for a population that we understand to be encumbered by poverty.

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Trailer Haven residents Maxine Ventura (right) with her daughter. Credit: East Bay Times.

San Leandro Mobile Home & RV Park LP is planning to extend a 10 percent discount on rent to income-eligible renters in the Trailer Haven community. Eligible households must not have incomes that exceed 50 percent of the area’s median income, or $32,200 for a single person, $36,800 for two people, and $46,000 for four people.

I support the city’s home repair program proposal,” said Councilman Ben Lee.

But I’m particularly concerned about those residents whose incomes are below those thresholds. I worry that rents may not be affordable for some residents even with a 10 percent discount.

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Credit: Apartments.com

Let’s face it, even 10 percent off a 25 percent increase, if it was that, is still a 15 percent increase, and there’s going to be some of our long-term San Leandro residents who are going to be forced out of their homes,” said Councilman Jim Prola.

I’ve seen this too often in San Leandro lately, where people come in from outside, buy up property and then put the rents up to such an extreme level that our own homeowners can’t afford to stay here.

City staff plans to bring a formal grant program for the Trailer Haven community to the council in February or March. If approved, it could start as early as spring 2017, but it would take about a year for city staff to review residents’ applications and start improvements.

The Daily Business News recently covered resident protests at Trailer Haven, including the push for rent control as a solution. That story is linked here.

For an industry legal commentary on why rent control is the wrong move for local governments to enact, please click here. ##

(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.

City Council Tables Manufactured Home Ordinance, Industry Pro Speaks Out

December 9th, 2016 Comments off
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Credit: Stuttgart Daily Leader.

The Stuttgart, Arkansas City Council voted to table Ordinance 1943 during a December 6th meeting. While the feeling is that more clarity is needed, the stakes could be incredibly high.

The Stuttgart Daily Leader reports that the proposed ordinance, recommended by the Stuttgart Planning Commission, would amend the code to read that a manufactured home is defined as “a detached dwelling unit factory built in the United States to the HUD Title 6 construction standards, which took effect June 15, 1976 bearing a red HUD certification label or its successor label on the outside of the dwelling.

Other identifying factors of a manufactured home include a HUD data plate affixed inside the dwelling on or near the main electrical breaker box, or other readily visible location and/or a permanent chassis. Any factory built dwelling containing the HUD certification label or its successor label on the outside of the dwelling can only be classified as a manufactured home.

HUD Label

HUD Label.

For modular homes, they would be defined as “a factory assembled or prefabricated detached dwelling unit built and conforming to local and state codes for the City of Stuttgart, other than the manufactured home construction standards as set forth in the manufactured home definition herein, consisting of two or more modules designed for permanent attachment to make one dwelling. Other identifying factors of a modular home include a removable chassis frame.

The call for clarity was raised by the planning commission due to a number of discussions regarding a manufactured home that was placed in a zone where manufactured homes are not currently allowed by local officials.

There’s nothing that can be done about that home,” said Alderman Joe Rhine. “The new definitions would prevent a similar incident.

I think it needs some more clarity,” said Alderman Teddy Holt.

A Different View

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Credit: Stuttgart Daily Leader, MHProNews.

This action by the city – like most others we encounter – is a reaction to the response of residents to a factory-built home being placed in a residential zone,” said J.D. Harper, Executive Director of the Arkansas Manufactured Housing Association (AMHA).

City officials look at the placement of the home as a mistake – something that should be remedied and not allowed to happen again – rather than as the right of a resident to exercise his/her housing choice on land that is zoned for single-family housing.”

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Homes like this are among those that the City of Stuttgart is seeking to restrict. Photo credit, Sunshine Homes and ManufacturedHomes.com.

To rephrase, what Harper is saying is that Stuttgart is trying to use definitions as a tool to effect NIMBY.

In a detailed, exclusive to MHProNews, Harper suggests that HUD is the ultimate source of this growing issue.

With 500 cities and incorporated towns in Arkansas – it is increasingly difficult for a one-person staff to keep up with all of the ordinances and regulations being enforced by local governments,” Harper said.

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Credit: MHProNews.

The AMHA is currently a one-person office.  That one is J.D. Harper.

He pointed out the challenges and opportunities, as well as how manufactured homes are viewed by local cities and towns in their state.

While Arkansas does have a law that prohibits cities from banning manufactured homes or restricting their placement to only leased-land in parks or communities – most cities view factory-built structures through the same prism as billboards, cell towers and sexually-oriented businesses… something to be avoided if at all possible, but restricted and heavily regulated if allowed at all.

Harper is far from alone in stating his concerns.

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

Earlier this year, in an exclusive to MHLivingNews, Jay Hamilton, the executive director of the Georgia Manufactured Housing Association, said: “The one issue that will prohibit affordable housing in the future — not only manufactured homes, but site-built — is local zoning and covenants.”

Texas retailer Gary Adamak thinks the zoning issue is bigger and more harmful than the challenges caused by the Dodd-Frank act. Describing battles with cities and

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More of Gary Adamek’s and other’s comments can the NIMBY war can be found at the link here.

towns in his state, “…some will simply pass ordinances that flatly prohibit manufactured homes,” says Adamek. “They don’t even have to get fancy about it.”

It’s a place where people have birthdays, Christmas, they raise their kids. It’s not a manufactured house — it’s a home,” said Scott Cannon, national sales manager of a Clayton Homes manufacturing facility in Waco, TX.

Or as Diane Mack said about her new manufactured home and land, I want my own property where I can raise my grandkids like I was raised.

I’ve told many city officials that I don’t believe that manufactured homes belong on every lot in every zone in every town – but I DO believe there are MANY lots in MANY towns which restrict manufactured homes where a factory-built residence would provide access to decent, affordable housing for working Arkansans — without having an adverse impact on surrounding property values or the quality of life in that neighborhood,” Harper’s said.  His full commentary is linked here.

The Stuttgart council voted to table the ordinance until the Dec. 20 meeting, to receive clarity from the Planning Commission on definitions.

The Daily Business News has covered this growing issue, including federal preemption to allow a manufactured home to be sited. ##

(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.

City Considers Modular Home Restrictions

November 22nd, 2016 Comments off
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DeRidder, Louisiana. Credit: Only in your state.

The DeRidder, Louisiana City Council introduced proposed ordinances that will determine where residents can place modular housing, and under what conditions, during a meeting on November 14th.

One of the ordinances allows for the placement of modular homes in districts zoned as B-1, (transitional business district,) R-2 (higher density single family district,) and R-3 (multi-family single district.)

The other proposed ordinance prohibits modular homes in districts zoned as R-1 (single-family residential district) and R-1-A (residential district).

Modular homes are currently permitted in the residential districts.

The proposals will be the subject of public hearings, currently scheduled for November 28th.

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DeRidder, Louisiana location on map. Credit: Sperling’s Best Places.

 

According to the Beauregard Daily News, the Council and the DeRidder Planning & Zoning Commission have been wrestling with the “issues” of manufactured housing and modular housing for a number of months.

Previously, the council outlined where manufactured housing could be placed.

Modular home being moved to site. Credit: Winona Daily News.

Modular home being moved to site. Credit: Winona Daily News.

According to current ordinance, a modular home is defined as a structure designed for residential occupancy, designed and constructed to standards of the International Residential Code. The proposal stipulates that the term modular home does not include manufactured housing.

A residential modular home must be multi-section, meet square footage requirements, have sloped roofs with overhanging eaves, and be generally within the prevailing exterior appearance of other residences in the neighborhood.

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Inside of a manufactured home. Credit: South Carolina Disaster Recovery Office.

In the proposed ordinance, any proposed modular home location has to be approved by the Planning & Zoning Commission and requires a siting permit from the city.

Modular homes will not be able to be placed on a lot where another residence exists.

Both of the proposed ordinances would grandfather any existing structures unless or until they are moved to new locations.

The Daily Business News has covered a number of related stories around the country recently, including an effort by the Linton, Indiana City Council to force all manufactured homes brought into the city to be located in manufactured home communities. ##

(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.

Ordinance Preventing Section 8 Discrimination Passes

November 10th, 2016 Comments off
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A Renton, Washington manufactured home community. Credit: King County Housing Authority.

The Renton, Washington city council passed an emergency ordinance last night that prohibits property owners and managers from discriminating against current or potential tenants based on their participation in the Section 8 program.

The vote was unanimous and the ordinance takes effect immediately.

When a group of tenants who participate in Section 8 housing came to us two weeks ago with the predicament that they were being displaced, we were very concerned about their challenges and we felt it was critical to address the issue right away,” said Renton Mayor Denis Law.

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Renton Mayor Denis Law. Official Photo.

We are very pleased that the Council passed the emergency ordinance that helps protect families under these circumstances.

According to the Renton Reporter, the mayor and city administrators held several meetings with housing advocates to better understand what the families need and determine the steps to take. City staff worked with the Renton Housing Authority, Tenants Union and Salvation Army to provide assistance and find solutions for the families impacted.

We have also taken steps to address the issues faced by the group of tenants who came to us initially,” Law said. “As a result many of the landlords have either withdrawn their renewal notices or are now allowing tenants to stay until the end of their leases.

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Renton, WA City Council. Official Photo.

In addition to making it illegal for any property owner, manager, landlord or agent to refuse to rent to a person solely on the fact the person plans to pay a portion of the rent using Section 8 money, landlords are also prohibited from refusing to allow required health and safety inspections by the public housing authority, and must now provide written notice to explain why the unit is ineligible.

I want to say thank you for your compassionate care in passing the Section 8 voucher protection for families and individuals here in Renton,” said community advocate Dr. Linda Smith.

I especially appreciate the urgency you placed on this matter and the fact that you took immediate action to find a solution. This was a major success as it does eliminate undue stress from so many families and children lives who potentially faced sleeping on the streets.

The housing market throughout the region has shifted and caused hardships for families of all income levels,” said Law.

Cost of homes and rental rates are increasing throughout the region. Like other areas in Seattle and Bellevue, Renton is also becoming increasingly unaffordable. We need to find long term solutions for affordable housing.

As Daily Business News readers are already aware, Congress passed the Housing Opportunity Through Modernization Act (HOTMA) in July, which allows Section 8 vouchers to be used for the purchase of manufactured homes. That story was covered here.  The state of Washington has experienced a surge in manufactured home sales, as was reported at the link here. ##

(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.

Austin City Councilman Proposes Mandated Amenities for MH Communities

October 19th, 2016 1 comment
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Cactus Rose MH Park. Credit: KUT.

Austin City Councilman Pio Renteria has proposed a new ordinance for manufactured home communities in Austin, after a visit to one last week.

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Pio Renteria. Credit: Austin City Council.

When I went down there I said, ‘my goodness, there’s no rec centers,‘” Renteria told KUT.There’s nothing there for the kids. They’re just running around, and when I inquired with one of my policy aides, she said, ‘yeah the laundry room is the recreational center.’

MH industry professionals see the effort as misguided.

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D.J. Pendleton.

This just seems like yet another city overreach with an idea that has not yet been thoroughly thought out as to its practical impact,” said DJ Pendleton, Executive Director of the Texas Manufactured Housing Association (TMHA).

And it is once again, the singling out of manufactured home communities compared to other housing options.

I don’t wholly disagree with the sentiment that it would be nice to have higher quality MHCs out there,” said MJ Vukovich, Vice President of Bellwether Enterprise, a Minneapolis based commercial and multifamily mortgage bank.

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Get the rest of the story, photos and more details by clicking the image above. Photo credits are as shown. Text graphics and collage credit, MHLivingNews.com.

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MJ Vukovich. Credit: Bellwether Enterprise.

However, someone has to pay for it and considering that low income housing is in low enough supply as it is, city councils may want to be a little careful how much they burden those trying to bring the product to the market.

The full public-focused story, including links to the proposed ordinance and the full take from Pendleton, Vukovich and others is available at MHLivingNews at this link here. ##

(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.

 

Official wants Mandated Amenities for MH Communities

October 14th, 2016 Comments off
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Cactus Rose MH Park. Credit: KUT.

Communities in and around Austin, TX have been a hotbed for discussions about affordablity and manufactured housing over the last few months.

According to KUT, Austin City Council member Pio Renteria recently visited some of his constituents at a manufactured home community and was shocked by what he saw.

When I went down there I said, ‘my goodness, there’s no rec centers,‘” Renteria told KUT. “There’s nothing there for the kids. They’re just running around, and when I inquired with one of my policy aides, she said, ‘yeah the laundry room is the recreational center.’

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Pio Renteria. Credit: Austin City Council.

Renteria has penned an ordinance that would require all new mobile home developments to include a playground and at least one other recreational space. The proposed ordinance would also require space for a community garden in both new and existing communities.

There’s huge mobile home parks now being built all along the Eastern Crescent, on the border of the city,” he said.This is a little urgent now because there are so many in the pipeline.

A View from the Manufactured Home Industry

D.J. Pendleton, Executive Director of the Texas Manufactured Housing Association (TMHA) provided his thoughts on Renteria’s proposed ordinance in his commentary on the MHProNews Industry Voices Blog.

This just seems like yet another city overreach with an idea that has not yet been thoroughly thought out as to its practical impact,” said Pendleton.

And it is once again, the singling out of manufactured home communities compared to other housing options.”

As the Daily Business News and MHLivingNews have covered here and here, misconceptions about manufactured housing have led to NIMBY-ism (Not-In-My-Back-Yard.)

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Notice there is no proposal to mandate vegetable gardens in multi-family housing, or even in other single-family neighborhoods in Austin,” said Pendleton.

Pendleton also shared that he’s all for community owners investing in upgrades and tenant amenities to improve their communities as they see fit. Improving and upkeep takes financial resources, which are inevitably passed on to the residents. While that’s the case, items that Renteria proposes confuse him.

I’m confused by the Council Member Renteria’s quote of,There’s huge mobile home parks now being built all along the Eastern Crescent, on the border of the city.’ ‘This is a little urgent now because there are so many in the pipeline.’” 

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One of Robert’s Resorts communities in TX.

Pendleton continued by saying, “I know Scott Roberts got a rezoning approval for the construction of a new community, but the quote gives the implication there are tons of parks under development.  I’d of course love it if that were actually the case, but other than Robert’s Resorts, I’m not aware of any.

In fact, the city just turned down a request to allow for a new community to be developed after neighbors showed up to oppose it.

Pendleton also calls the lack of logistical details in the ordinance into question.

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Video and this still from Roberts Resorts are from an exclusive interview, A Cup of Coffee with Scott Roberts of Roberts Resorts, with more photos and videos – linked here.

The vote on this proposal was delayed.

Daily Business News will continue to monitor this story.  Pendleton’s commentary and more related information are found, linked here.##

(Image credits as shown above.)

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RC Williams, for Daily Business News, MHProNews.

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

NIMBY strikes as council nixes manufactured housing use requested by over 100 residents

August 24th, 2016 Comments off

NIMBYnotInMyBackYardDuring their Aug. 18 meeting, the Georgetown, SC city council members denied a request to rezone the West End to permit the addition of manufactured homes on more than 200 vacant lots.

A petition signed by 150 residents asked to rezone that area from R5 to R3, to allow manufactured homes as low income housing, reports Max Hrenda in the SouthStrandNews.

Once they received the petition, the city council sent the matter to the planning commission for a recommendation, where hearings and public meetings took months before it was finally declined.

Georgetown’s West End Redevelopment Plan was first drafted and approved by the city in 2004, states Hrenda’s report.

City Councilman Sheldon Butts, however said the commission also recommended the formation of a subcommittee to examine the Redevelopment Plan at greater length.

Mayor Jack Scoville offered to oversee the appointments to the committee.

I guess I’d appoint two people on each side of the issue,” Scoville said. “… I’m sure we can find four people who feel strongly on both sides of the issue who are willing to serve. I’ll make the appointment, and we’ll have to get two people on council who are willing to do it.” Mayor Scovill was first elected in 2009, having previously served on the council from 2006-2009.

NIMBY and Manufactured Housing

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Gary Adamek, Fayette Country Homes, TX.

Gary Adamek – a Houston, TX area retailer – and Scott Cannon – national sales manager of a Clayton Homes manufacturing facility in Waco – faced a similar issue in Texas, and with the support of their state’s association director, took on Huntsville’s dim view of manufactured housing.

Adamek said that “The municipalities have hurt us way, way more than Dodd-Frank,” he said in an in depth report linked here.

The Daily Business News plans to track this issue, and we may update this story with insights from association leaders, who have been asked for comments that were not yet in at the time this report was published. ##

(Image credit: OHRN.ON.CA, Nimby text added by MHProNews.)

(Editor’s Note: Matthew Silver is taking some much needed and well earned time off, and L. A. “Tony” Kovach will be helping fill this Daily Business News role in the interim).

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L. A. ‘Tony’ Kovach is the publisher of MHProNews.com and MHLivingNews.com.

Article submitted by L. A. Tony Kovach to the Daily Business News, MHProNews.com.