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Posts Tagged ‘dept of housing’

MHARR: HUD Formaldehyde Rules should be Discarded

September 13th, 2013 Comments off

The Manufactured Housing Association for Regulatory Reform (MHARR) reports two rules proposed by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) as required by the 2010 Formaldehyde Standards for Composite Wood Products Act (the Act) would establish nationwide emissions standards for composite wood products, many of which are used in manufactured housing, and a third-party testing and certification system. The Act seeks federal adoption of the California Air Resources Board (CARB) formaldehyde emissions standards, the most restrictive in the nation, that would also raise the cost of composite wood products in all housing. Additionally, the Act directs the Dept. of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) to align its manufactured housing standards with the proposed final EPA standards, rendering unnecessary the existing HUD standards, which MHARR says should be repealed. MHProNews understands MHARR has supplied HUD with its comments.

New Home Sales Rise in June

July 24th, 2013 Comments off

Sales of new single-family homes spiked 8.3 percent in June to a seasonally-adjusted annual rate of 497,000 units, says the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB), their best pace in the last five years, according to the Dept. of Housing and Urban Development and the Census Bureau. The inventory of 161,000 new homes for sale in June marks a thin, 3.9 month inventory at the current sales pace, the lowest level since March of 2004. Rick Judson, NAHB Chairman, says, “The very low supply of new homes on the market is indicative of the difficulty that builders are having in keeping up with demand due to availability issues with regard to materials, credit, labor and lots for development.” Regionally, three of four experienced gains in new home sales: The Northeast increased 18.5 percent, the West posted a 13.8 percent gain, and the South moved up 10.p percent. The Midwest fell 11.8 percent, as MHProNews has learned.

(Photo credit: Fotosearch)

Extensive Housing Data from 2011

July 12th, 2013 Comments off

In a 2011 survey conducted by the U. S. Census Bureau and the Dept. of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), covering approximately 132.4 million housing units, 90 million are single-family homes, 9.07 million are manufactured homes, and 10.7 million are sited in two to four family buildings. 10.3 million of the units are condominiums or cooperatives, and just over five million are in larger apartment structures of 50 units or more. One third of the roughly 76 million owner-occupied dwellings are owned fee and clear, while 43 million have a single mortgage lien on the property and 6.5 million have two. In addition, as mortgagenewsdaily tells MHProNews, the median price for a home acquired in 2011 was $110,000, a 2.3 percent increase over 2009. The median monthly mortgage payment for homeowners was $1,015 in 2011.

(Image credit: theatlanticcities)

Last Day for TexasMHA Board Nominations

July 10th, 2013 Comments off

The Texas Manufactured Housing Association (TMHA) sends a reminder that nominations for the TMHA Board of Directors are due by 5 PM today, July 10, 2013. The two-year term requires four board meetings a year. Postmark, fax, or email your nomination form to caitlin@texasmha.com. Or call (512) 459 1221. Texas continues to far outnumber other states in shipment of HUD Code homes since the rebound of the industry in Aug. 2011, with 19,143 homes through May 2013. As MHProNews has learned, the next three states on the list—LA, FL and AL—account for 17,060 homes during that same period, according to Dept. of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) statistics.

(Image credit: Texas Manufactured Housing Association)

House Committee to HUD: Hire Manufactured Housing Administrator or Else

June 29th, 2013 Comments off

The 2014 fiscal year House Appropriations Committee measure that outlines budgets for the Dept. of Housing and Urban development (HUD) contains a provision that HUD must choose a permanent administrator of the Office of Manufactured Housing within 120 days of the legislation’s enactment. Introduced by Rep. Chuck Fleischmann (R-Tenn.), if HUD fails to meet this deadline, the agency will lose $50,000 in salaries and expense budgeting for each day the requirement is not met, according to the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) newsletter. The report accompanying the bill states that “the Committee understands that a substantial backlog of recommendations approved by the Manufactured Housing Consensus Committee exists, and a lack of action and attention in this area has meant that codes and standards have not kept pace with technological innovation or allowed the industry to keep pace with consumer demand. The Committee looks forward to a more focused and responsive office under permanent leadership.” Knowing of the committee’s activity, a week prior HUD issued a notice announcing its search for someone to fill the administrator post, reversing a long-standing policy to leave the post vacant. As MHProNews knows, this marks an important milestone for the industry.

(Image credit: Fairmont Homes)

Sun Communities gets Slapped with Discrimination Complaint , Settles

June 28th, 2013 Comments off

A complaint lodged against Scio Farms Estates that their policies violated the U. S. Fair Housing Act has resulted in a $39,500 out-of-court settlement that will go to two non-profits in southeastern Mich. Renaissance Community Homes helps developmentally disabled and mentally ill people find housing and live independently, and Scio Farms manufactured housing community denied their application in 2011. Renaissance contacted the Fair Housing Center of Southeastern Mich. which subsequently discovered discrepancies in policy application. A complaint filed with the U. S. Dept. of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) against Scio Farms and its owner, Sun Communities, Inc. of Southfield, Mich. for discrimination ended with a monetary settlement: $30,000 will go to Renaissance and the Fair Housing Center will use $9,500 to monitor Sun Communities for fair housing compliance in the coming year. As annarbor.com informs MHProNews, Sun employees will have to undergo training on fair housing procedures. Sun owns and operates 185 land lease communities comprised of over 67,000 developed home sites.

(Photo credit: Alan Warren/annarbornews–Scio Farms Estates, Mich.)

In the Beginning…from Travel Trailers to Manufactured Homes

June 27th, 2013 Comments off

Metal travel trailers evolved as an interesting, inexpensive way for a family to take a vacation, but the Great Depression transformed them into dwellings as people lost their homes. During WWII, the units provided portable quarters for the military as well as housing for factory workers that were part of the war production effort. In the later 1940’s and through the 1960’s the homes became larger and more livable as communities sprang up, mostly on the outskirts of town. In the early days, there was a central shower and laundry facilities, and an outhouse between every two homes. As bobvila.com tells MHProNews, construction standards that existed for the factory-built homes varied from state-to-state. As of June, 1976 the now legally-termed manufactured homes have to adhere to strict standards of construction—the HUD Code– established by the Dept. of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), regulations which have been updated several times. Bruce Savage, consultant to the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI), the industry trade organization, says, “The HUD code has evolved, and the guidelines are fairly strict, but how they are achieved is up to the manufacturer.” Joe Stegmayer, CEO of Cavco Industries, Inc. says it takes 7-10 days to complete a highly-finished manufactured home—from window treatments to appliances and painted drywall—with precision. Some homes are destined for retirement communities, some for family living. Says Kevin Flaherty of Champion Homes: “In the family communities, people are looking for an affordable home with security. In the adult community, they are often driven by a desire to minimize their housing investment so they can protect their savings. Buyers appreciate that they can purchase just the home and not have to liquidate as much money, since they are renting the lot.” Manufactured housing continues to provide inexpensive home ownership.

(Image credit: Cavco Industries, Inc.)

 

April MH Production Rises

June 3rd, 2013 Comments off

The Manufactured Housing Association for Regulatory Reform (MHARR) informs MHProNews the Dept. of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) statistics reveal production of manufactured homes in April rose 14.7 percent over April 2012, 5,313 homes over 4,630. Total production for the year equals 18,173 homes, an increase of 4.2 percent over the 17,429 for the same time period last year. The increase reverses negative growth in March (-4.3 percent) and +0.1 percent in February, 2013.

(Photo credit: Wikipedia–manufactured homes ready for shipment)

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HUD Grants to Spur Urban Housing

May 31st, 2013 Comments off

The Dept. of Housing and Urban Development (HUD)’s Choice Neighborhood Program will provide $109 million in grants to revitalize public and HUD-assisted housing as a means of transforming desolate communities. HousingWire says Choice Neighborhoods program focuses on three goals: replacing distressed housing, improving educational outcomes for youth and rehabilitating decimated neighborhoods. Choice Neighborhood grants can be extended to local governments, public housing authorities, tribal entities, nonprofit organizations, and to collaborations of public and private entities. Since 2010, HUD has granted $231 million in grants to eight major cities as a means of stimulating neighborhood transformation. These grants generated almost $2 billion in leveraged funding that impacts the communities. MHProNews has learned applications for the Choice Neighborhood Program will be taken until Sept. 10, 2013.

(Photo credit: nakedphilly)

Alleged Funds Mismanagement may Mar Affordable Mods

May 29th, 2013 Comments off

The tri-parishtimes informs MHProNews that alleged overpayments to several staff members and other wrongdoing by the Morgan City Housing Authority (MCHA) in Morgan City, Louisiana may be investigated by the Dept. of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), which would likely forestall a planned modular public housing community. Federal civil service guidelines restrict bonuses to no more than ten percent of salaries, but one staffer received nearly double the salary. The authority’s board chairman, Victory Ho, says an audit revealed payments above $90,000 were made to four employees, and non-monetarily, the files of 25 tenants in Section 8 housing showed 20 violations. Some of the buildings operated by MCHA had failed inspections, and the bookkeeping for the authority was incomplete. He says, “Last year, HUD awarded us $417,243 to make large-scale improvements to our community. Is there any money left? I just don’t know. And sadly, we have a waiting list of at least 100 families who are in need of public housing.” With this money misspent, Ho fears the modular public housing community that has been approved to replace run-down Brownell buildings will not be built.

(Photo credit: Excel Homes)