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Warren Buffett, “the Moat,” Manufactured Housing, Berkshire Hathaway, Clayton Homes, 21st Mortgage, Vanderbilt, Wells Fargo, NAI…

December 27th, 2017 Comments off

CastleMoatManufacturedHousingBerkshireHathawyClaytonHomes21stVMFMortgageFinanceLoansManufacturedHomeRetailBrokerageSuppliersLOGOSDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

Sometimes it’s best to hide in plain sight.” – David Estes.

Warren Buffett’s ‘moat principle’ has been laid out by others in their investment commentary, such as was covered by Seeking Alpha in last night’s market report.

Thomas: Buffett Should Buy Manufactured Home Community REIT, Plus MH Market Update$

The structure and operations of Buffett’s brands that he owns outright, or has a significant stake in, lends itself to this moat principle that he’s spoken about.

BerkshireHathawayHomeServicesClaytonHomes21stVanderbiltWellsFargoMortgageNAIIowaRealtyManufacturedHousingInstituteLogosBuffettMungerMoatMHProNews875

There are industry voices that have expressed the concern that the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) lends itself as a vehicle by which Buffett can dominate manufactured housing. MHI’s structure is powered by dues and an executive committee that is made up of four people.  Two have been Berkshire Hathaway team members for years, the current chairman is a prior Clayton Homes division president. Buffett’s dominating MHI in plain sight.

FollowTheMoneyPayMoreAttentionToWhatPeopleDoThanWhatTheySayMartyLavin6MillionYachtManufacturedHousingIndustryDailyBusinessNews600

Lavin is an MHI award winner, and a success story in communities, retail and finance.

Progressive and conservative thinkers and sources alike have observed, criticized, and analyzed how MHI does the will and work of Buffett.

Maxine Waters Statement, Preserving Access Manufactured Housing Act 2017, Warren Buffett, Clayton Homes

Newspaper Names Clayton Homes, Clinton Foundation, Hillary Clinton In “Swamp After Storm” Post-Disaster “Corruption”

Other recent MHI executive committee members have included companies that have significant business ties with one or more Buffett-dominated manufactured home brands.  That’s included Nathan Smith, SSK Communities, and Howard Walker, JD, Equity LifeStyle Properties. 

An issue that MHProNews spotlighted some years ago has been the relatively slow growth, low volume, and high regulatory risks in the manufactured home industry. These are factors that were named by U.S. Bank when they withdrew from actively pursuing their otherwise profitable lending in manufactured housing.

Bank Vault Door Closes on Manufactured Housing Lender

When MHI’s president, Richard “Dick” Jennison was asked about growth rates with a softball interview question, (see video, below) Jennison argued for slow growth.

Why? Isn’t it obvious that more rapid growth could have been done sustainably and responsibly?

MultipleReasonsExpectManufacturedHousingDoBetterThanSiteBuiltHousingEricBelskyEecDirJointCenterHousingStudiesHarvardUnivDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

At the time Belsky made this prediction, manufactured homes were selling over 250,000 new units per year. This year, we’ll not reach about 40 percent of that total. What happened?

Appealing Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) Marketing, Finance Booklet Reviewed

What other major industry association executive wants to argue for slow growth for an industry that was previously projected to become the dominant form of housing in the U.S. by 2010?

The Moat Formula Elements, Applied to Manufactured Housing…?

The formula for slowing and/or choking off manufactured housing growth, and gaining a bigger control over the industry has been expressed like this.

  • Relatively low sales volume, compared to potential and the demand for affordable housing. 
  • High regulatory burdens and risks. 
  • For a time, choking off lending.

Each of these factors forced closures, and sparked consolidations. That’s arguably a polite way of saying that small businesses were forced to sell out to larger ones.

average-shipment-per-decade-manufactured-home-posted-on-mhpronews-com-d

Belsky at Harvard, others believed manufactured housing’s breakout decade would be the 2000s.  That didn’t happen.  Why?  Note that in 2003, Warren Buffett entered the manufactured housing industry.  Graphic provided by Ross Kinzler when he was then the executive director of the Wisconsin Housing Alliance (WHA).

Aren’t these elements in keeping with Buffett’s moat principles? 

SamZellManufacturedHousingIndustryManufacturedHomeCommunitiesMastheadIndustryCommentaryMHProNews

Manufactured Housing Industry Potential

The National Association of Realtors (NAR) ® Chief Economist Lawrence Yun estimates there is a need for some 8 million affordable housing units.

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

The National Low Income Housing Coalition (NLIHC) has a very similar estimate of 8 million affordable housing units needed.

NLIHC CEO Responds on HUD’s Worst Case Housing Needs Report, MH Leader Reacts

Several tech giant current and/or prior owners managers have concluded that factory built homes is the best way to close that gap.

$58,000 PreFabs, Videos, Updates of More Hi-Tech Backers

Meet the Modular Housing Builder Google Picked, and their “Industrial Cathedral”

Bill Gates’ Subsidiary Belmont Plans Smart City of Future, What Role Will Factory Built Homes Play?

Plans for Floating Modular Cities, “Seasteading” is Becoming Reality

Manufactured Housing Facts 2017, By the Numbers

Contradictions and logical conflicts have been spotlighted by MHProNews that can be boiled down to some basic principles, explained to us by various MHI and other industry members.

1)    Berkshire Hathaway choked off lending, as the Smoking Gun Parts One and Two from 21st Mortgage documents.  That forced hundreds of manufactured home retail closures.

Killing Off 100s of Independent Manufactured Home Retailers, Production Companies – Tim Williams/21st Mortgage “Smoking Gun” Document 2

“Perverse”–Warren Buffett-Dodd-Frank, CFPB, Manufactured Housing, Loans, Independent Businesses Fact Check$

2)    ‘The big companies have figured out how to use MHI to get the smaller companies to pay for what the big companies want.’  Ouch, that would mean those small to mid-sized companies are feeding the hand that bites their own.

ELS’ Sam Zell – Compliance Costs Destroys Smaller Businesses = Consolidation

KennyLipschutzQuotePoorJobOfLobbyinginMHIndustry-postedMHProNews48thMHINCClist

3)    ‘Whether or not MHI succeeds at passing the Preserving Access to Manufactured Housing Act, the Berkshire Hathaway units benefit.’ Why?  Because either regulatory burdens force consolidation, and if they ever pass it, they can then charge higher rates and fees on their loans.

Jenny Hodge, National Community Council, Public Time-Bomb Deployed on Manufactured Housing Institute, Prominent MHI Lender

4)    More than 3 dozen were in the room in San Antonio when then MHI Chairman Tim Williams explained why he didn’t neither 21st nor Vanderbilt provided the GSEs with the data they said they said they needed to more responsibly and robustly enter manufactured housing chattel (home only, personal property) lending.  Yet, MHI claimed to be working to advance DTS.  Really?  When their chairman, and two largest personal property lenders failed to practically support it?  How does that apparent contradiction work in practice?

Duty To Serve, “Complete Waste of Time” per Tim Williams, CEO/21st Mortgage; POTUS Trump, Warren Buffett Insight$

5)    MHI was pushing for the DOE energy standards, even though MHARR and third party research demonstrated the harm it could cause the industry and hundreds of thousands of potential consumers. They eventually pivoted, but only after months of public pressure.

MHARR vs. MHI on DOE Energy Rule, Pushback Pay$ Off?

6)    MHI was silent on replacing Pam Danner at HUD, again until months of pressure apparently forced them to pivot.  Note that MHI doesn’t typically admit they are pivoting, they just do it.

7)    MHI had a reported opportunity to favorably modify the MLO rule by agreement, which hurt all sized operations, but disproportionately hurt the independents.

IshbelDickensPhotoNationalManufacturedHomeOwnersAssocNMHOALogoDailyBuisnessNewsMHproNews

They declined the negotiated deal, and have pursued enactment of Preserving Access for over 5 years and at a cost of millions of dollarsThey did so, even though a former MHI Government Relations VP stated in writing to MHProNews that the odds of changing Dodd-Frank under the Obama administration were low.

Manufactured Housing Institute VP Revealed Important Truths on MHI’s Lobbying, Agenda

People can look at the facts, and are obviously free to come to various conclusions about what these concerns and allegations mean.

RickRobinsonManufacturedHousingInstituteMHIDailyBuisnessNewsMHProNews

In front of dozens of industry professionals in Deadwood, SD, MHI SVP Rick Robinson ducked questions. Why? Why has MHI ducked the repeated offer of a public, video debate?

But if MHI was correct, why do they duck questions or offers to publicly debate via video their performance?

ManufacturedHousingIndustryShipmentsFEMAManufacturedHomesNotMobileHomesTrailersIndustryResearchReportsDataMHProNews

Credits, MHI, Cavco.

MobileManufacturedHomeAnnualShipments1959-2012CalculatedRisk-DailyBusinessNewsManufacturedHousingIndustryResearchReportsMHProNews

If MHI had the solutions that they claim, would the industry have seen the kind of slides witnessed since 1998?

Housing is one of the biggest economic sectors, and manufactured housing has amazing upside potential.  While labor challenges are slowing the short-term potential all types of building, a factory-building environment is arguably the most logical way to address it successfully, rapidly, and profitably.

Are there other factors – such as misimpressions caused by errant research and reporting?  Yes, and MHProNews and MHLivingNews have covered those too. But that good media can be obtained is demonstrated by the report below.

Bloomberg, HousingWire, Realtor and Fox all suggest Manufactured Homes as Important Solution for Affordable Housing in America

But as Frank Rolfe and others in the industry have observed, MHI has played a roll by so often failing to respond to so many incorrect reports.

Frank Rolfe Blasts MHI for Poor Media Engagement, Industry Reactions

Frank Rolfe: Pressured into Silence? Manufactured Housing Industry, and Journalism

For years, as an MHI member this writer proposed solutions to issues that the industry faced that were routinely ignored, delayed or sidelined. Efforts to advance their desired agenda were sidelined, or undermined.

Why?

“Accurate, but Misleading” MHI Preserving Access to Manufactured Housing Act Alert – ‘Weaponized New$,’ Fact Check$

That and other allegedly problematic and controversial patterns took place even during the time this writer was an elected MHI Suppliers Division board member.  As we called for more transparency, correcting inaccurate ‘weaponized’ reporting, and other issues, MHI didn’t reform, they arguably doubled down.

Financial Choice Act, with MHI Bill, Heading to Floor Vote, Outlook, Analysis

MHI’s response was to threaten this platform’s managing member via third parties, including attorneys, that were arguably MHI cat’s paws.  When that failed, a threatening anonymous package was sent via U.S. mail, which is a potentially criminal act.  Contents in that anonymous package named MHI, plus there’s been another MHI ‘finger print.’

Extortion? RICO? Allegedly Illegal, and Dirty Side of Manufactured Housing, Exposed

It should be noted that Buffett’s voiced concerns over anti-trust (anti-monopoly) action is reportedly the biggest concern for the future of Berkshire Hathaway after he passes away.

Who Will Replace Warren Buffett at Berkshire Hathaway? Expert Insights, Video & Manufactured Home Industry Outlook

President Raises the M-Word, “Monopoly,” Plus Manufactured Housing Industry Market Update$

Summing Up on the Buffett/Manufactured Housing “Moat”

WarrenBuffettQuotesPeverseEasyThingsDifficultChainsHabitLearnFromHistoryPeopleDontLearnFromHistoryManufacturedHousingMHI-MHProNews-768x342

Warren Buffett’s own words,
the words and often contradictory deeds of MHI leaders (elected and appointed),
facts from left-and-right,
demonstrate how the industry was throttled, and consolidated using crony-capitalist control of big government, barriers of entry and staying in the business.a

TimWilliamsCreditLinkedIn21stMortCorpCEOManufacturedHousingIndustryMHIChairmanWarrenBuffettBerkshireHathawayChairman

Warren Buffett, right, credit Wikipedia. Tim Williams, right, credit, LinkedIn. Collage credit, MHProNews. http://www.mhpronews.com/industry-news/industry-in-focus/is-tim-williams-21st-mortgage-ceo-mhi-chair-at-odds-with-berkshire-hathaway-chairman-warren-buffett

FocusedTransformationCavcoReportStocksMarketResearchDataDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

Several manufacturers that Cavco Industries (CVCO) has purchased were MHARR members at the time they were bought.

It all fits the Warren Buffett theory on moats, doesn’t it?

RichardCordrayCFPB-ManufacturedHousingRegulationsCSPANstill-InsideMHvideoPostedMHProNews-com-

Why didn’t MHI promote these points if they really wanted passage of Preserving Access?  Richard Cordray quotes and those from the report and video on this page, linked below. https://www.manufacturedhomelivingnews.com/media-should-re-visit-dodd-frank-reporting-in-light-of-congressional-testimony/

That begs the question, if all this is so, then doesn’t the industry need a new post-production trade association to represent independents?

Study Recommending New Manufactured Housing Association for Independent Retailers, Communities, Lenders, Others Released

And with various lending and other options in theory or actually available today, isn’t this the time for the industry to break the hold of Berkshire Hathaway over the industry?

Several industry firms are showing the path ahead.

What is certain is that if the behavior isn’t changed, then the pattern going into 2018 and beyond will likely continue. ##  (News, fact checks, analysis, commentary, satire).

TwitterFacebookLinkedInNew Year’s Resolution: This writer already has one of the largest LinkedIn followings in the manufactured home industry. But we’ve frankly not asked for Twitter, or Facebook followers. That changes, starting today. If you want to keep up with posts relevant to the industry, you can connect via the links below.

https://www.linkedin.com/in/latonykovach/

https://twitter.com/LATonyKovach @LATonyKovach
https://www.facebook.com/tony.kovach.71

2 Week Notice, MHProNews will be on a somewhat modified publication schedule from now through January 2nd, resuming normal scheduling in 2018. More details, click here.

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Click the image above to sign up for the MH Industry’s #1 Emailed Headline News Updates. Click only the stories YOU want to read.

Note 1: Thousands do it. You, your team, and industry colleagues can sign up to the MH Industry leading headline news/updates – typically sent twice weekly – please click here to sign up in just seconds.

Note 2: For media, business development, training, or other professional services, click here. The more pros like you that use our services over any others, the more we can protect, educate, and promote the Manufactured Housing Revolution.

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We agree with Warren Buffett on the value of the lessons of history, reading and research. Without those deep insights, the wool can be pulled over other people’s eyes.

By L. A. “Tony” Kovach.

Kovach is the award-winning managing-member of LifeStyle Factory Homes, LLC,
parent to MHProNews, and MHLivingNews.com.
Both are #1 in their categories.

Kovach is one of the most endorsed and recommended MH industry professionals in all of manufactured housing.

The Paradox of Christmas

December 25th, 2017 Comments off

ChristmasHomeDecorationsThe Google dictionary defines a paradox as, “a seemingly absurd or self-contradictory statement or proposition that when investigated or explained may prove to be well founded or true.”

We want to present a few reflections, one from Soheyla Kovach.

Ladies – Love, Lunacy, Leadership, and those “Laddies”

Another from L. A. “Tony” Kovach, on their respective visions of the paradox of Christmas.

Benefits from “Living Twice,” Plus the Source of All Truth

Between now and new year, ponder and reflect on what you’d like to see different in 2018.

ChurchRessurectionLATonyTamasKovachDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

L. A. “Tony”, and Tamas Kovach – Soheyla behind the camera.

Then, inspired by the paradox of Christmas, be the change. Merry Christmas to all… ## (Celebrations, events, Christmas reflections).

SoheylaTamasKovachDisneyDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

Soheyla, and Tamas Kovach.

Morality, God, Freedom. and the Holidays

December 22nd, 2017 Comments off

MoralityGodFreedomDailyBusinessNewsMHProNewsThe word ‘holidays’ is a contraction of the words, ‘holy days.’

With Christmas upon us, and Hanukkah just past, a reflection on what the ‘holidays’ should mean is timely.

In an era when we see so much corruption in Washington, and other problems in society, more are asking: is it time to return to basics?  Like what faith in God should practically mean?  What God considers moral, and immoral?

Dennis Prager made this video in a way that is comfortable for Jews and Christians alike; which polling suggests is nominally about 90 percent of the American population. Since most everyone wants to be dealt with honestly and fairly, how are those ideals best understood and defined?

When the nation reportedly has over a million laws on the books at the local, state, and federal level it is worth recalling that America’s founders were nearly all people of faith.  They believed that faith was essentially to a civil society.


In the spirit of the holidays – the holy days – we present this video, which reflects on why God considers freedom to be so important, and how freedom is grounded in morality. ## (Holiday reflections, analysis, commentary.)

Darkness and Light; Faith, Freedom, and Manufactured Housing

2 Week Notice. MHProNews will be on a somewhat modified publication schedule from now through January 2nd, resuming normal scheduling in 2018. More detailsclick here.

Notice 1: Looking for our emailed MH Industry headline news updates? Click here to sign up in 5 seconds. You’ll see in the first issue or two why big, medium and ‘mom-and-pop’ professionals are reading them by the thousands, typically delivered twice weekly.

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

SoheylaKovachManufacturedHomeLivingNewsManufacturedHousingIndustryDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews-Submitted by Soheyla Kovach to the Daily Business News for MHProNews.com.

Manufactured Housing’s “Duh!” Monday Morning Sales Meeting

December 18th, 2017 Comments off

$100HundredDollarBillOnTwoArmsMondayMorningSalesMeetingManufacturedHousingMarketingSalesManagementMHProNews579The Urban Dictionary and others sources tell variations on the following classic blonde joke.

In one variation, the woman has a cooking accident, which sets her kitchen on fire; in another, there is a barn that is mistakenly set ablaze.

Per the JokeYard, is the following version of the politically-incorrect yarn. 

 

This blonde called 911, screaming “Help me, Help me my house is on fire.”

The dispatch said “Mam, please calm down. I need to get some information from you.”

Again the blonde yelled “Help me, Help me my house is on fire.”

The dispatch said “Mam calm down, How do we get to your house?”

The blonde replied “Duh… In the big red truck.”

 

Manufactured Housing’s “Duh, Big Red Truck” Moment

Humor can be an interesting way to start – or keep – a meeting, discussion, or talk going.

But humor and serious discussion can work hand-in-glove.

For years – but with increased intensity in recent months – MHProNews has documented the opportunities in sustainable, ethical, manufactured home sales.   Bad news for conventional builders in the report below can be good news for you, and your operation’s location(s).

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

The opportunities to increase retail sales in a local market by a factor of 10 is clearly evidenced by proven results, and by third-party data/statistics; including, but not limited to, the report linked above. 

While some large operators in the industry are spending 6 to 7 figures a year on marketing and sales growth, family-owned community partner Tom Fath in the video explains how applying two lessons and far more modest sums helped them profitably increase their sales by several hundred percent. 

In a Q&A Discussion video intended for this year’s Tunica Manufactured Housing Show’s attendees, Fath names two key concepts, and gives examples of just how the investments in time, talent, and treasure performed.

Others we’ve worked with professionally have done similarly.  For example, these proprietary processes have worked to move two other operations from low single digit monthly sales to 25 sales – sales, not leases – a month average for several months in a row.

  • Get out your note pads,
  • watch this video above with your sales team,
  • and then discuss how this can be profitably applied to you and your location. 

Don’t hesitate to call us, because no one else in MHVille is doing it like our clients and we do it.

Video | Marketing/Ads/Web | Sales Coach/Training |Royal Content Creation | Recruiting | Consulting | PR |

 

Only 2 Choices – Media Engagement, Manufactured Homes, & You – Monday Morning Sales Meeting

Last week’s Monday Morning Sales Meeting is linked above. 

MH Industry News, Tips, and Views Pros Can Use.” © ## (Analysis, commentary, fact checks, news, trends.)

2 Week Notice, MHProNews will be on a somewhat modified publication schedule from now through January 2nd, resuming normal scheduling in 2018. More detailsclick here.

Note 1: Thousands do it. You, your team, and industry colleagues can sign up to the MHIndustry leading headline news/updates – typically sent twice weekly – please click here to sign up in just seconds.

Note 2: For media, business development, training, or other professional services, click here.  The more pros like you that use our services over any others, the more we can protect, educate, and promote the Manufactured Housing Revolution.

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

FactoryBuiltCarsClothingAppliancesElectronicsCellsSmartPhonesHomesItJustFollowsLATonyKovach(C)2017MHproNewsBy L. A. “Tony” Kovach.
Kovach is the award-winning managing-member of LifeStyle Factory Homes, LLC,
parent to MHProNews, and MHLivingNews.com.
Both are #1 in their categories. Kovach is one of the most endorsed professionals in all of manufactured housing.

Trends in MH Communities, Impacting Producers; Looming Crash?

December 14th, 2017 Comments off

ComingCrashTruckTreeDailyBusinessNewsMHProNewsSeveral sources with mostly MHI member companies tell MHProNews that based upon current manufactured home (MH) shipment trends, they expect most MH communities to achieve effective capacity in the next three to five years.

‘Capacity’ here means that the sizable numbers of orders to producers that have been placed in recent years – new homes being used to fill vacant sites – will drop off significantly. There will still be orders to replace those older units – or those damaged by nature or accident – that would cost less to replace then to repair.

Other communities that are encouraging upgrades from older to newer homes will also still be placing orders to producers of HUD Code manufactured homes.  A few new properties and expansions are also in the pipeline.

But given the current large percentage of new home orders going into MH communities, and retail not yet recovered to anything like levels from 10 to 20 years ago, independent producers that fail to adapt could be hitting a looming wall in the next 3 to 5 years.

MH Retail

Manufactured home retailers have long been the majority of orders to HUD Code builders. But as prior Daily Business News reports have noted, there are several factors that have kept retailers from recovering to the kinds of production levels that were once common one to two decades ago.

ManufacturedHousingGoingVerticalReportDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

http://www.mhpronews.com/blogs/daily-business-news/manufactured-housing-industry-new-hud-code-home-retailing-more-exploring-going-vertical/

 

MH Lending, FEMA and False Profits (and False Prophets)

“The Two Cs”

While one hears the expression the “3 Cs” of Clayton, Cavco and Champion home builders, some observers note that it is more accurate to say that Clayton and Cavco are still more closely aligned than Champion and the other two Cs.

average-shipment-per-decade-manufactured-home-posted-on-mhpronews-com-d

This and the chart below are the industry’s ultimate reality check.  While there is a growing affordable housing crisis, MHI’s own outgoing president noted several items that the post-production/umbrella association had failed to do. Graphic provided by Ross Kinzler when he was then the executive director of the Wisconsin Housing Alliance (WHA).

Champion is not that far behind Cavco in production. And while the three have collaborated on the MHI’s so-called ‘story telling initiative,’ the jury is still out if that will prove to be effective or not.  There are good reasons to doubt that it will be.

MobileManufacturedHomeAnnualShipments1959-2012CalculatedRisk-DailyBusinessNewsManufacturedHousingIndustryResearchReportsMHProNews

If MHI had the solutions that they claim, would the industry have seen the kind of slides witnessed since 1998?

Why?

Appealing Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) Marketing, Finance Booklet Reviewed

Because Clayton’s and Cavco’s own data reflects the fact that they are not growing at the overall average rate of the industry as a whole.

9percent1percentNewManufacturedHousingTrillionDollarHousingNewExistingHomeSales2016CreditManufacturedHousingIndustryDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews_1

http://www.mhpronews.com/industry-news/industry-in-focus/a-executive-summary-400-words-manufactured-housing-industry-obstacles-and-billions-in-opportunities

At various levels, isn’t it apparent from date points like the graphic above, that the 2 Cs are not yet executing in a way that the mainstream housing market is embracing?

IndustryMarketShareClaytonCavco63%ManufacturedHousingIndustryDataResearchMarketStockReportsDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

http://www.mhpronews.com/blogs/daily-business-news/cavco-industries-spotlight-just-the-fact-other-manufactured-housing-industry-market-update/

What’s the Difference? Advertising vs. Educating

So in spite of their larger respective scales, there isn’t yet any compelling evidence for the data and trends to reflect the 2 Cs proven ability to grow at sufficient pace to make up for the 3 to 5 year drop in orders from MHCs.

“Perverse”–Warren Buffett-Dodd-Frank, CFPB, Manufactured Housing, Loans, Independent Businesses Fact Check$

Couple that with the slide-treading water-or modest growth in several states, and there is a potential for industry growth to hit a wall in that 3 to 5 year time frame.  All of these factors – and others – suggest that adjustments are needed by independents, who have no reason to rely on MHI and their dominating companies.

While Manufactured Housing Overall Rises, Some Slip Sliding Away

MHI has proven their ability to influence the industry’s members more than the home buying public at large.  Nor have they proven an ability to achieve success on their own agenda with politicos.

Manufactured Housing Institute VP Revealed Important Truths on MHI’s Lobbying, Agenda

They have somewhat successfully dazzled enough industry members with data about Facebook likes and emails to Congress that their failure to actually perform has not fully sunk into many.  Others realize, but may not be in a position to publicly admit MHI’s clear inability to achieve their own stated goals.

MultipleReasonsExpectManufacturedHousingDoBetterThanSiteBuiltHousingEricBelskyEecDirJointCenterHousingStudiesHarvardUnivDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

At the time Belsky made this prediction, manufactured homes were selling over 300,000 new units per year. This year, we’ll not reach 1/3 of that total. What happened?

The ‘housing of the future’ hasn’t taken off yet, and many of the reasons point back to actions/inactions related to MHI.


Thus, it is no surprise that MHI ducks the hard questions on issues ranging from HUD, to financing, lack of industry growth, consolidation, NIMBY, MHIA 2000, and more.

Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) SVP Rick Robinson Ducks Serious Industry Questions in Deadwood

So in spite of the promise by then Chairman Nathan Smith that their MHI association would become more proactive than reactive in the future, the case can be made that they are still being led by Berkshire Hathaway in whatever direction their Powers That Be decide.

Barring anti-trust action which could take years, the largest companies can weather these 3 to 5 year looming storms, as they have previous ones.

President Raises the M-Word, “Monopoly,” Plus Manufactured Housing Industry Market Update$

Full communities of whatever size can survive and thrive.

Financial Choice Act, with MHI Bill, Heading to Floor Vote, Outlook, Analysis

But what will the smaller-to-mid-sized retail and production operations do?

These kinds of trends, outlined above and below, are the reason that some have decided to take their future into their own hands.

DeadwoodTheManufacturedHousingRevolutionYouMHLivngNewsDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

Dominating Your Local Market, The Manufactured Housing Revolution

Others are exploring a new post-production association, suggested by MHARR.

Study Recommending New Manufactured Housing Association for Independent Retailers, Communities, Lenders, Others Released

Look for a follow up MHProNews on the impacts, drivers, and proven strategies that are being pursued by those in the industry who are looking ahead, and growing their operations in a sustainable fashion, instead of going along with the tide.

Only 2 Choices – Media Engagement, Manufactured Homes, & You – Monday Morning Sales Meeting

Look too for the solutions to these current trends and looming challenges, which are hiding in plain sight. ## (News, analysis, commentary.)

2 Week Notice: MHProNews will be on a somewhat modified publication schedule from now through January 2nd, resuming normal scheduling in 2018. More detailsclick here.

Note 2: Looking for our emailed MH Industry headline news updates? Click here to sign up in 5 seconds. You’ll see in the first issue or two why big, medium and ‘mom-and-pop’ professionals are reading them by the thousands, typically delivered twice weekly.

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

ProperPlanningUnderstandingMotivationDisciplineTimeTalentTreasureExecutionPreventsPoorPerformanceLATonyKovachManufacturedHomeMarketingSalesManagementBy L. A. “Tony” Kovach.

Managing Member, LifeStyle Factory Homes, LLC – parent company to MHLivingNews, MHProNews and the business development and expert professional services provided to the MH industry, and investors.

FEMA’s Pivot, Post Hurricane Harvey

December 13th, 2017 Comments off

PostHurricanHarveyDailyBusinessNewsMHProNewsThe headlines have in so many cases moved on to other topics.

But there are still thousands in Texas, and Florida – and millions in Puerto Rico – who are still struggling in their respective post-hurricane recoveries.

More than 500 Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) manufactured housing units (MHUs) used in Louisiana after last year’s flooding has been moved to Texas to help victims of Hurricane Harvey.

According to FEMA, per reports from the AP and KNOE 8 in Baton Rouge, FEMA says the manufactured housing units sent to Louisiana’s neighbor had been vacated by flood victims who returned to repaired homes or found other permanent housing.”

More than half the 4,490 Louisiana households who received mobile homes [sic] after the August 2016 flooding have moved out of the units, according to FEMA. The agency says the number of mobile homes heading from Louisiana to Texas will grow larger as even more Louisiana occupants wrap up their home rebuilding.”

SICSicutJournalismDefintionSocietyProfessionalJournalismDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

A series of recent reports related to FEMA are linked below.

GeorgePrescottBushTxGeneralLandOfficeCommissionerKIIITVDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

FEMA, Manufactured Housing Industry’s Gift that Keeps Giving?

MH Lending, FEMA and False Profits (and False Prophets)

## (News, commentary, analysis.)

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SoheylaKovachManufacturedHomeLivingNewsManufacturedHousingIndustryDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews-Submitted by Soheyla Kovach to the Daily Business News for MHProNews.com.

Latest Small Business Optimism Index, NFIB Report

December 13th, 2017 Comments off

LatestSmallBusinessOptimismReportsNFIBDailyBusinessNewsMHProNewsIt’s about a 34-year record.

Not since the roaring Reagan economy has small business optimism been as high as it was in November, according to the National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB) Index of Small Business Optimism,” released yesterday.

We haven’t seen this kind of optimism in 34 years, and we’ve seen it only once in the 44 years that NFIB has been conducting this research,” stated NFIB President and CEO Juanita Duggan. Small business owners are exuberant about the economy, and they are ready to lead the U.S. economy in a period of robust growth,” per a press release to the Daily Business News.

The [Small Business Optimism Index (SBOI)] Index gained 3.7 points in November, a sharp increase over what was already a near-record performance the previous month. Eight of 10 components posted gains, including a stunning and rare 16-point gain in Expected Better Business Conditions and a 13-point jump in Sales Expectations,” according to the release to MHProNews. 

Per sources at the NFIB, there are hundreds of companies that are involved in manufactured homes and related that are members of the some 325,000 total members of that organization.

This is the second-highest reading in the 44-year history of the Index,” said NFIB Chief Economist Bill Dunkelberg. “The NFIB indicators clearly anticipate further upticks in economic growth, perhaps pushing up toward four percent GDP growth for the fourth quarter. This is a dramatically different picture than owners presented during the weak 2009-16 recovery.”

The change in the management team in Washington has dramatically improved expectations,” Dunkelberg continued.

SmallBusinessOptimismNov2017NFIBDailyBusinessNewsManufacturedHousingIndustryMHPorNews

Job Creation plans have “increased six points last month, providing more evidence of a strong labor market. The number of owners who said it’s a Good Time to Expand rose four points; Inventory Plans increased by three points; Inventory Satisfaction increased by three points; and Actual Earnings Trend moved up two points.”

Job creation faded, but hiring plans soared, primarily in construction, manufacturing, and professional services,” said Dunkelberg.

SmallBusinessOptimismNov2017GraphNFIBDailyBusinessNewsManufacturedHousingIndustryMHPorNews510

Finding qualified workers has been a persistent problem all year for small business owners, a reliable sign of growing economy. Last month, it was the second most important problem facing small business owners,” NFIB said.

Only taxes polled higher.

Small business owners are paying very close attention to what is happening in Washington,” said Duggan. “They continue to list taxes as their number-one problem, but they now have clear expectations that Congress and the President will address that problem.”

As long as Congress and the President follow through on tax reform, 2018 is shaping up to be a great year for small business, workers, and the economy.”

A related report on the facts behind small business optimism, related to progress made under the Trump Administration, is linked below.

What Winning Looks Like, plus Manufactured Home Market Report Update$

A prior report regarding the NFIB on the tax reform issue is linked below.

NFIB’s Juanita Duggan Cheers, Leads, Explains Why on Tax Reform for American Businesses

Comments by Democratic supporter, Jaime Dimon of JP Moran, are linked below.

Why Democratic Leaning Jaime Dimon, of JP Morgan, Calls Americans to Support Tax Reform

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2 Week Notice: MHProNews will be on a somewhat modified publication schedule from now through January 2nd, resuming normal scheduling in 2018. More detailsclick here.

Note 2: Looking for our emailed MH Industry headline news updates? Click here to sign up in 5 seconds. You’ll see in the first issue or two why big, medium and ‘mom-and-pop’ professionals are reading them by the thousands, typically delivered twice weekly.

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SoheylaKovachManufacturedHomeLivingNewsManufacturedHousingIndustryDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews-Submitted by Soheyla Kovach to the Daily Business News for MHProNews.com.

Soheyla is a managing member of LifeStyle Factory Homes, LLC, the parent company to MHLivingNews.com and MHProNews.com. See a third-party media profile that includes Soheyla the industry’s leading trade media, linked here.

Fuller’s “A Tale of Broken Hitches”

November 29th, 2017 Comments off

IntegrityHomesNewDealTXShawnFullerDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews810If you have been in the industry for anytime at all, especially in the area transportation, you have had a hitch failure,” says manufactured home (MH) professional, Shawn Fuller.

The timing of Fuller’s multi-layered message is interesting, because there have been news items about manufactured home transport recently, that other news has kept the Daily Business News from covering. But it bears mentioning, and underscoring, that the MH industry has an overall impressive safety record on transportation and installation.

That installer and transporter shout-out completed, Fuller – active in association, a regular with his wife Rosa at industry trade shows, and events – raises serious topics.

The issues are routinely in the news, but not always in the way that Fuller has presented it.

His commentary, which he dubbed, “A Tale of Broken Hitches,” is linked here.

RosaShawnFullerIntegrityHomesTexasManufacturedHousingIndustryVoicesDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

Rosa and Shawn Fuller, credit, Facebook. Manufactured home industry professionals, with interests such as Integrity Homes, in Texas.

Preview, Later This Week…

Other points of view on the issues Fuller raised are welcomed.

Later this week, look for an Industry Voices commentary by a state association executive on a different, but equally hot topic.

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SoheylaKovachManufacturedHomeLivingNewsManufacturedHousingIndustryDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews-Submitted by Soheyla Kovach to the Daily Business News for MHProNews.com.

No Market Report T-Day, Manufactured Housing Industry Reflections

November 23rd, 2017 Comments off
New York Stock Exchange Photo by Eric Miller

NYSE, credit, Wikipedia.

With the U.S. stock markets closed on Thanksgiving day, the most recent report available is last night’s closing numbers, charts, data, insights, and commentary – which are reported at the first link below.

While the manufactured home industry has been rising for several years, its potential is far greater than what it is currently producing and selling.

The second link below is a reminder for the industry’s professionals to let every adversity to become a source for inspiration.

Who’s Right? Goldman Sachs, BoA? Market Thumbs up or down 2018? MH Market Update$

Implementing Inspirational Dissatisfaction

The following link is a reminder for the industry to consider during this holiday weekend.

Beyond Thanksgiving, Reflections on Scandals, Fears, Reform, Prayer, Conversion

Warren Buffett’s secrets include long term planning, careful analysis, and reading. 

“Drag a hundred-dollar bill through a trailer park, you never know what you’ll find,” James Carville, Clinton Strategist

Thanks for putting those latent skills you and others posses as well to work.

NPR-Tornado Hits Mobile Home, Fact Check-Why Terminology Matters to Manufactured Housing Industry, Home Owners, Weather, News Pros

Why not encourage others to join you in that, starting today?

MostPeopleThinkSmallBecauseAfraidofSuccessAfraidDecisionsAfraidWinningDonaldTrump71MHProNews

Image credit, Pinterest.

From our family to yours, Happy Thanksgiving. © ## (News, tips, and commentary.)

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Soheyla, Tamas L. A. "Tony" Kovach family

Soheyla Kovach (pronounced like Co-Vatch), with their son Tamas (pronounced like TahMash), and husband L. A. “Tony” Kovach, photo credit, 83 Degrees Media, who did the 3rd party report linked below.  83degreesmedia.com/features/mhnews072115.aspx

Submitted by Soheyla Kovach to the Daily Business News for MHProNews.com.

$58,000 PreFabs, Videos, Updates of More Hi-Tech Backers

November 14th, 2017 Comments off

BlokableUpdateCurbedManufacturedHousingIndustryDailyBusinessNwesMHProNewsThis report should be viewed as a book-end to yesterday’s Daily Business News report that Microsoft founder, Bill Gates, is planning a ‘state of the art’ city of the future west of Phoenix, AZ.

It’s only been four months since the Daily Business News spotlighted, Blokable.

That firm also has a tech-connection behind the bold start-up.  Among the backers?  Ties to Microsoft, and Amazon.

Our previous report to Blokable, is linked below.

Blokable – Making “Housing As Easy as Ordering A Car”

The Amazon veteran executive has said there’s no way that the housing crisis can be solved by using current construction methods.

There’s no way the current way we’re building is going to solve the problem,” Aaron Holm said, per Curbed.  

Are industry professionals who read Holm’s comment going to dismiss the notion that Bill Gates is going to see conventional construction as the centerpiece for his planned City of the Future, Belmont?

Bill Gates’ Subsidiary Belmont Plans Smart City of Future, What Role Will Factory Built Homes Play?

Blokable, Refresher

The Blokable units are costly when calculated on a per-square foot basis, far higher than HUD Code manufactured homes.

The base-units are designed for workforce housing, the homeless, vets, and other ‘lower cost, higher density’ types of uses.

Holm said they have three project now underway.

The first MicroBloks, per Curbed, are scheduled for installation in January in:

  • Seattle, working with a firm called Compass Housing Alliance,
  • in East Palo Alto, CA with a non-profit named Soup, and
  • in the Vancouver area with the local housing authority.

These units will cost between $58,000 and $85,000, depending on the level of customization and furnishing,” crowed Curbed.

The units are…“18 to 34 feet in length, cost $150 to $350 per square foot,” says Curbed, which then misstates reality of this type of pre-fab – vs. others – by claiming that by “manufacturing [Blokables] in a central facility, both the design and building processes are cut in half.”  Clearly, they’re higher than many modular builders, and far higher than upscale manufactured homes too.

But when you watch this video presentation by Holms himself, below, notice that some of the facts cited by Curbed are stated differently by the former Amazon exec?  Note too the investor interest?  And the ‘shot’ taken at manufactured housing?


These Developing Stories Reflect the True State of Manufactured Housing, in Nov 2017…

Nature abhors a vacuum.

Yes, there’s tremendous opportunities and some are capitalizing on them, as yesterday’s 15 minute video seminar report – linked further below – reflected.

The Curbed story also underscores why even some housing focused media writers can get obvious facts wrong (i.e. $150 to $350 per sq foot isn’t half price of conventional SF housing costs, or other disconnects between what Curb reported and what Holm himself said on the video above).

There clearly are forward thinkers and doers in manufactured housing (see yesterday’s post on MH Best Practices, linked below).

But so long as the industry in general allows the drift of the image of manufactured housing to continue, the rise of ‘single wide’ and manufactured home alternatives are bound to continue.

Manufactured Housing Monday Morning Sales Meeting: Finance & Industry Facts, Figures, Sales Tip$ Improving Best Practice$

 

Clearly, there are serious efforts to improve the industry’s image at the local level.  More could join them, as was noted in the report above.  But until the relatively modest shipment levels the industry is currently in are lifted far higher, the industry is arguably operating in a vulnerable, endangered zone.

See yesterday’s manufactured home related, best practices report, above. We Provide, You Decide.” © ## (News, analysis, and commentary.)

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SoheylaKovachManufacturedHomeLivingNewsManufacturedHousingIndustryDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews-Submitted by Soheyla Kovach to the Daily Business News for MHProNews.com.