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“If Everyone is Going Left, Look Right” – ELS Chairman Sam Zell’s Mantra, Manufactured Homes, and Contemporary Controversies

February 17th, 2019 Comments off

 

IfEveryoneIsGoingLeftLookRightELSChairmanSamZellMantraManufacturedHomesContemporaryControversiesDailyBusinessNewsMHProNEws

Billionaire Warren Buffett speaks about “value investing,” plus only investing in concepts that can be easily understood, and make sense.  Buffett believes in well managed firms.  Those concepts from the 3rd richest man on earth are proven to work just fine.  Others methods he deploys are arguably less savory.

 

Billionaire Sam Zell and Buffett differ on numerous items in their public political stances. But Zell and Buffett both agree that manufactured homes make good sense.  As Zell has said about investing, “If everyone is going left, look right.”

Zell’s Equity LifeStyle Properties (ELS) continues to do deals in manufactured homes and communities. Ditto Buffett, Sun Communities, Legacy Housing, and numerous others. Their reasons are similar to this extent.  Each firm believes in the long-term opportunities in affordable housing.  Nothing is more proven in that sector than manufactured homes.

That said, much of the public and investment world just doesn’t realize that, not yet anyway.  Thus the ongoing value of Zell’s mantra.

 

Suits and Opportunities

It is commonplace for sizable operations to have one or more attorneys – ‘suits’ – on staff or on retainer.  With affordable housing in high demand, why haven’t more industry pros recognized Zell’s lesson of being contrarian and “looking right” – doing something different than others are doing – as an obvious part of the solution for accelerating sustainable growth for MHVille?

There are independent operations in manufactured housing that tell MHProNews that most of the business that they do is with 21st Mortgage Corp. That’s not a surprise, given the fact that Berkshire Hathaway owned 21st and Vanderbilt Mortgage are the top two lenders in the industry.  But what that factoid suggests ought to be a wakeup call to the industry’s other lenders and all of the industry’s musing professionals.  It’s this. Conventional housing routinely gets better credit score buyers than manufactured housing attracts.  Why is that?  Perhaps more to the point, why is it that some manufactured home pros can attract better quality credit or cash buyers, while others don’t?

Every week, on MHProNews there are any number of reports that shine a light on the opportunities and obstacles that face the HUD Code segment of the factory-built home industry. But perhaps the greatest obstacles are arguably from within, and it was MHI member Frank Rolfe of RV Horizons who said that on more than one on-the-record statement.

 

Investors Asking the Right Questions

We get periodic contacts from a range of investors who often ask the right questions.  Some, after seeing the modern HUD Code manufactured home product first-hand are blown away by the value proposition. Which again begs the question, why isn’t our industry doing far better than it is?  That’s a question that outsiders looking in – pondering investing – are asking us on a regular basis.

It is also a question that every operation already in manufactured housing should look in the mirror and ask itself.

Certainly, there are those who’ve flocked after smaller to mid-sized manufactured home communities (MHCs), with the ‘big boys’ often going after larger communities or portfolios whenever possible. That’s fine, it works. But that’s a fairly limited box, especially when compared to the growing multifamily housing sector.

A community executive, seeing our recent report on Michigan – linked further below – speculated that some of the slowdown there was due to the higher cost of installations kicking in there.  Our publisher and industry consultant L. A. ‘Tony’ Kovach replied, but isn’t the spread between conventional housing and manufactured homes – even with a costlier installation – still huge?  The community executive replied in the affirmative, and acknowledged the point Tony made.

So the question stands, given the affordable housing crisis, what gives? Why are total sales nationally or in the various states so relatively modest?

Ask the Manufactured Housing Association for Regulatory Reform (MHARR) that question.  Why isn’t the industry doing better than it is, given the quality and value of today’s HUD Code homes?  MHARR – the Washington, D.C. based trade group – has answered that quite specifically.  They point to the obvious failures of the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) in their post-production advocacy.  They also note the game by MHI that MHARR has colorfully dubbed the “Illusion of Motion.

Ask independents privately if they trust Clayton Homes (e.g.: CMH) or 21st Mortgage, and they may point you to Heath Jenkin’s experience, what happened to hundreds of retailers, or other experiences like those in recent reports, further below.

The fact that MHProNews has routinely asked Arlington, VA based MHI or their Omaha-Knoxville masters to explain or clarify those cases, and they have not yet done so is puzzling isn’t it?  Or that not even an attorney working for them has opted to explain such real-world examples – doesn’t that silence speak volumes?

But these vexing internal industry issues are potentially opportunities in disguise too. Every crisis is also an opportunity, once properly understood – but only if someone is committed to doing all that is necessary to navigate the challenges and thus get to the promised land.

Zell could have thrown his arms up over frustrations experienced in MHVille long ago.  He hasn’t, he keeps investing.  Why?  Because, he said in a statement, that Equity LifeStyle Properties (ELS) has long-term confidence in the industry.

Which brings us back to Zell’s mantra. Thanks again to to all who’ve made this the runaway most-read trade media in all of manufactured housing.  Yes, we do things differently. But is that part of the reason that has made and kept us #1?  

With no further adieu, let’s dive into the real-world scenarios – in the positive as well as the problematic reports – from the week that was: 2-10-2019 to 2-17-2019.  Because each report, properly understood, is part of the puzzling promise of manufactured homes as the solution for the affordable housing crisis that is hiding in plain sight.

 

New Featured Articles and Reports for February on MHProNews

February 2019

 

What’s New on MHLivingNews

 

Democrats, Republicans Agree – “Manufactured Homes Can Play a Vital Role in Easing” the Affordable Housing Shortage

 

What’s New from MHARR

ManufacturedHousingAssocRegulatoryReformLogoMHARRlogo

 

MHARR-ani

 

What’s New on the Masthead

TheMastheadCommentaryLATonyKovachMHProNews

Grasping True Value of the Green New Deal for America, Affordable Housing Professionals and Advocates

 

What’s New on the Daily Business News on MHProNews

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Saturday 2.16.2019

  “Appalled” said David McCarthy – HUD Cites “Substandard Conditions,” But How Many Multi-Million Opportunities for Investors and Manufactured Housing Pro?

“Appalled” said David McCarthy – HUD Cites “Substandard Conditions,” But How Many Multi-Million Opportunities for Investors and Manufactured Housing Pro?

 

Friday 2.15.2019

  Manufactured Home Marketing Resource, Richest and Poorest Counties in each of the 50 United States of America

Manufactured Home Marketing Resource, Richest and Poorest Counties in each of the 50 United States of America

  America’s $22 Trillion Debt, Markets Soar, Plus Manufactured Housing Stock Updates

America’s $22 Trillion Debt, Markets Soar, Plus Manufactured Housing Stock Updates

 

  Legacy Housing Announces New Bulk Leasing Program for Manufactured Home Communities and Mobile Home Parks

Legacy Housing Announces New Bulk Leasing Program for Manufactured Home Communities and Mobile Home Parks

 

  Warren Buffett “Oracle of Omaha” HBO Documentary Berkshire Hathaway #Advexon Video

Warren Buffett “Oracle of Omaha” HBO Documentary Berkshire Hathaway #Advexon Video

 

Thursday 2.14.2019

 

  Managing Mueller Russia Probe Outcome? NBC, Other Mainstream Media Reports Soften, Investor Impacts? Plus, MH Market Updates

  21st Mortgage Suit’s CFPB Denial, Exclusive Document on Berkshire Hathaway Manufactured Housing Brands Investigation

21st Mortgage Suit’s CFPB Denial, Exclusive Document on Berkshire Hathaway Manufactured Housing Brands Investigation

  Cavco Industries Woes Mount, Official, Unofficial Insights, Broader Manufactured Home Industry Impacts?

Cavco Industries Woes Mount, Official, Unofficial Insights, Broader Manufactured Home Industry Impacts?

  Economics 101 – Supply, Demand, and Record Number of Job Openings in U.S. and Affordable Factory-Built Housing

Economics 101 – Supply, Demand, and Record Number of Job Openings in U.S. and Affordable Factory-Built Housing

 

Wednesday 2.13.2019

 

  U.S. Department of Energy Proposed Rulemaking Could Impact Manufactured Housing

U.S. Department of Energy Proposed Rulemaking Could Impact Manufactured Housing

  MHVille Exclusive – Democrats Senators Sign Anti-Competitive Practices Letter to DoJ, Plus MH Market Updates

MHVille Exclusive – Democrats Senators Sign Anti-Competitive Practices Letter to DoJ, Plus MH Market Updates

  Trust in News, Washington Post vs Investors Business Daily Poll Results, MHVille Impacts

Trust in News, Washington Post vs Investors Business Daily Poll Results, MHVille Impacts

  Thorns and Roses In Manufactured Home Community Controversy

Thorns and Roses In Manufactured Home Community Controversy

 

Tuesday 2.12.2019

 

  New Law Benefits Manufactured Home Community Owners, Residents

New Law Benefits Manufactured Home Community Owners, Residents

  Legacy Housing Announces Corporate Role Changes, Plus Manufactured Housing Market Updates

Legacy Housing Announces Corporate Role Changes, Plus Manufactured Housing Market Updates

  State-Level Data Provided for Total Manufactured Home Shipments in 5 Key States for 2018

State-Level Data Provided for Total Manufactured Home Shipments in 5 Key States for 2018

  Aging in Place Harms Millennial Home Buyers, Says New Video and Report – MHVille Opportunity or Obstacle?

Aging in Place Harms Millennial Home Buyers, Says New Video and Report – MHVille Opportunity or Obstacle?

 

Monday 2.11.2019

  News Tip, Document – Is Clayton Homes Engaged in False Down Payments? Deceptive Trade Practices?

News Tip, Document – Is Clayton Homes Engaged in False Down Payments? Deceptive Trade Practices?

  Sun Communities Insider Trading, Ratings Updates, Plus Manufactured Home Industry Stock, REITs, Closing Results

Sun Communities Insider Trading, Ratings Updates, Plus Manufactured Home Industry Stock, REITs, Closing Results

  Boom! Varied Reports Best Economic Optimism in 16 Years, Millions ‘Better Off’ Under President Trump’s Administration

Boom! Varied Reports Best Economic Optimism in 16 Years, Millions ‘Better Off’ Under President Trump’s Administration

 

  HUD’s $2+ Billion Grants, Manufactured Housing Institute, Manufactured Housing Association for Regulatory Reform, & MH Opportunities Galore

HUD’s $2+ Billion Grants, Manufactured Housing Institute, Manufactured Housing Association for Regulatory Reform, & MH Opportunities Galore

 

Sunday 2.10.2019

 

  MH Black Eye, or Opportunity in Disguise? Vexing Saga of Millie Francis’ Faith Based Art, Bradenton Tropical Palms ROC, Vanguard Management, Knox and Levine

MH Black Eye, or Opportunity in Disguise? Vexing Saga of Millie Francis’ Faith Based Art, Bradenton Tropical Palms ROC, Vanguard Management, Knox and Levine

 

That’s this Sunday morning recap of “News through the lens of manufactured homes, and factory-built housing” © where We Provide, You Decide.” © ## (News, analysis, and commentary.)

 

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SoheylaKovachDailyBusinessNewsMHProNewsMHLivingNewsSubmitted 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 MHProNews, and MHLivingNews.com.

 

Related Reports:

You can click on the image/text boxes to learn more about that topic.

Conquest Capitalism – Thoughts of Chairman Warren Buffett – Billionaires Campaign to Control Trillion Dollar Affordable Housing Market

Warren Buffett’s Moat, Understanding Manufactured Housing Requires Grasping Strategic Economic Moats

 

HUD Code Manufactured Home Production Decline Persists – Time For Action Not Excuses

“The Illusion of Motion Versus Real-World Challenges”

 

 

 

 

 

 

Following Facts, Money – Sam Zell, Warren Buffett, Tim Williams/21st Mortgage, and Manufactured Housing

October 29th, 2018 Comments off
FollowingFactsMoneySamZellWarrenBuffettTimWilliams21stMortgageDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

Photos, left to right, Sam Zell, Tim Williams, Warren Buffett. Photo credits for first two on left, MHProNews.

Opinions are common.  As the saying goes, opinions are a dime a dozen.

 

 

But facts, evidence, and money trails are nettlesome things.

 

Sam Zell

Sam Zell is the Chairman of Manufactured Home (MH) Community giant, Equity LifeStyle Properties (ELS). In the MH and RV site spaces – and related home sales and rental business – they are at the top with Sun Communities, per figures used by the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI).

According to Open Secrets, which uses federal information sources, Sam Zell has given during the 2018 election cycle 100 percent of his campaign contributions to Republican (GOP, Grand Old Party) candidates.

 

ZellSamuelOpenSecretsCampaignContributions2018ManufacturedHousingIndustryDailyBuisnessNewsMHProNews

 

ICYMI, or need a refresher, a prior Daily Business News on MHProNews report about Zell is linked below.

 

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

 

 

Warren Buffett

Warren Buffett is the Chairman of the Berkshire Hathaway (BH) conglomerate. Buffett’s Berkshire owns numerous manufactured housing connected brands. They include, but are not limited to:

 

  • Clayton Homes,
  • 21st Mortgage Corp,
  • Vanderbilt Mortgage – which began making loans in the MHCommunities (MHC) commercial lending space – beyond making loans on manufactured homes for Clayton Homes,
  • Berkadia,
  • NAI,
  • Shaw Carpets,
  • Berkshire Hathaway Home Services,
  • plus numerous other suppliers and financial services firms, not overlooking BH’s serious stake in controversy-laden Wells Fargo.

 

As MarketWatch and MHProNews reported last week, Buffett gave 100 percent of his campaign contributions to Democrats in the 2018 midterm election cycle.

 

MarketWatch Reports Warren Buffett’s Midterm Campaign Contributions

 

It must be noted that via so-called “dark money” channels, Buffet has given to foundations and non-profit groups. Through those foundations, Berkshire money is supporting anti-MHC activist group, Manufactured Housing Action (MHAction).

 

 

Expose! Why Has Warren Buffett/BH Funded Anti-MHC Activists, MHAction? Why Fund Attacks on ELS, Frank Rolfe, Blackstone Group?

 

As we recently reported on MHLivingNews, MHAction has targeted with protests that drew mainstream media attention:

  • HUD Secretary Ben Carson,
  • ELS,
  • Frank Rolfe and Dave Reynolds led RVHorizons, MHPFunds, and Mobile Home University (MHC),
  • Blackstone Group, which MHProNews reported entered the MHC space last summer.

 

Even Golden State Manufactured-Home Owners League (GSMOL), another manufactured home owner resident group, has cautioned against MHAction.

 

Manufactured Home Resident Group President Cautions Against MHAction, Surprising Background Reveal to Manufactured Housing Action

 

 

Tim Williams

Tim Williams is the President and CEO Buffett’s Berkshire owned 21st Mortgage Corp. Williams has been the subject of numerous reports, exclusive statements and interviews by MHProNews for several years.

 

TimWilliams21stMortgagePublicationDailyBusinessNewsMHProNewsMHLivingNews

 

Williams, along with ELS’ late Vice-Chairman Howard Walker, Williams has praised MHProNews and MHLivingNews, see the comments above and below.

 

HowardWalkerJDELSViceChairmanPhotoManufacturedHouisngInstituteMHIExecuitiveCommitteeBoardMemberDailyBUisnessNewsMHProNews

The words of the late Howard Walker, ELS Vice Chairman, shared for publication with MHProNews.

 

According to Open Secrets, Williams has split his personal campaign donations. Most, per that source, has gone to Republicans. But it is worth noting that Williams has given to high profile U.S. Senate candidates who are Democrats. Those Democrats include, but may not be limited to, Joe Donnelly (IN-D) and Sherrod Brown (OH-D).

 

2018-10-29_0935TimothyWWilliamsKnoxvilleTN21stMortgageDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

 

Donnelly is considered the more moderate among Democrats, but Brown is pretty far leftist. What makes the Williams contributions controversial is the fact that Williams publicly blasted “progressives” in an MHI meeting, while he was still MHI Chairman.

 

VicePresidentMikePenceWifeKarenHandOverHeartPledgeColts49ersGameWashingtonTimesDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

Williams supported a progressive, Sherrod Brown, and a Democrat that sides with progressive Senate Minority Chuck Schumer and House Minority leader Nancy Pelosi on almost every issue. One can agree with William’s presentation, while noting the obvious disconnect between his words and deeds. MHProNews was the only MH trade media that spotlighted this concern previously, at the article linked below. Now, more i’s are dotted. 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

 

 

The Terrain on D-8

Both Senators Donnelly and Brown are in states that President Donald J. Trump (R) has campaigned in. It must be noted that it was President Trump who signed S. 2155, which gave the manufactured housing industry a measure of relief from the onerous MLO Rule imposed by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB, or more recently being dubbed the Bureau of Consumer Financial Protection (BCFP)).

 

It was after an MHProNews satirical image, that was followed by a spotlight from sources at the CFPB that said that MHI had not yet contacted acting director Mick Mulvaney about regulatory relief, that The Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) reportedly began their push for repealing the MLO rule via S 2155.

 

ManufacturedHousingInstitutePreservingAccessManufacturedHousingActMHICartoonMastheadCommentarySatireMHProNewsLifeStyleFactoryHomes

 

 

Because of the presence in Indiana of a Libertarian candidate who is drawing single digit polling that might otherwise go to the GOP, that Senate race is tight. But there is polling data that suggests that the Republicans are marginally ahead in both states.  The varied House races are a tougher call, but early voting data seems to suggest Republican momentum, in spite of what Nate Silver and other pro-Democratic pundits are saying.

Indiana, of course, is the state where Vice President Mike Pence (R) was governor. MHProNews sources have said that Pence understands MH industry issues, knows our industry’s lingo, and has been supportive of manufactured housing.

 

President Donald J. Trump Visit to Manufactured Home Community, Video, Hurricane Florence Update

 

MHProNews was alone in industry trade media to point out the apparent conflict between Tim Williams/21st and his boss Buffett, or was it a head fake? Either way, it’s problematic for thinking manufactured housing industry professionals, most notably independents.

7 of the top ten billionaires are backing Democrats, and have been for some time, per Open Secrets and other third-party sources. See the graphic below.

 

ForbesTOP10BillionairesPartyPoliticalSupportTendenciesManufacturedHomeLivingNews

 

 

Connecting the Dots in and for MHVille

While Mr. Barack Hussein Obama was the 44th President, Buffett’s grandson served in the Obama White House.

 

GeorgeSorosWarrenBuffettTidesFoundationAntiFaBarackObamaNYCommunitiesforChangeLogoMHActionLogoMoveonLogo

WarrenBuffettHowardBuffettHowardWarrenBuffettPresBarackHObamaDailyBuisnessNewsMHProNews

 

One could argue that Zell and ELS are trying to protect their interests against Berkshire Hathaway dominated MHI, by being in MHI. Speculation and statements on that topic vary.

But what the facts and money trail point to is that MHI leaders like Buffett, Clayton, Tim Williams, and Nathan Smith have supported Democratic candidates that have been working against the interests of the majority of manufactured home industry independents for all of the Obama era years.

 

“He’s Lying,” Campaign Insider Video – “Don’t Do Politics?” Tell Jim Clayton, Phil Bredesen, and Marsha Blackburn, Preserving Access to Manufactured Housing Act Supporter

 

Sources tell MHProNews that Berkshire Brands in Manufactured Housing have worked for at least a decade to keep the Government Sponsored Enterprises (GSEs) of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac out of chattel lending.  The Manufactured Housing Association for Regulatory Reform (MHARR) President and CEO, Mark Weiss has argued the GSEs are mandated to do chattel lending as part of their Duty to Serve (DTS) Manufactured Housing.

 

MHARRMarkWeissIfCongressHadMeanttheDutytoServeToBeOptionItWouldNotHaveCalledItADutyDefintionofDutyIsMandatoryResponsibilityDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

 

 

 

Next Steps? 

The Hill and other sources say that voters are following this midterm more closely than others. MHProNews data on ‘hits’ on various articles related to issues like those noted indicates something similar within the manufactured home industry’s circles.

It should be noted that MHProNews respects the right of Buffett, Williams, Clayton or others to give their money and vote as they wish. That said, it is questionable for them to argue that they are working for regulatory relief, when they have supported candidates that have and are doing the opposite of regulatory relief to manufactured housing.

 

Greener, Stylish Manufactured Homes – Hidden Facts in the Washington Post Manufactured Housing Narrative

 

With November 6 only a week away on Tuesday, and early voting started, this is arguably the time for thinking professionals to see what has happened to them, at the hands of MHI’s leadership.

That in turn leads to the point that it is the 45th President, Donald J. Trump’s Administration that has shown in numerous ways that they are fighting to break down the barriers for manufactured housing that billionaires like Buffett, his minions, and his allies have built up.

Beyond voting wisely, please consider sharing posts like this with your fellow professionals. Also, consider sharing with home owners and consumers MHLivingNews, and specifically the related reports, linked herein and further below.

There are growing indications, even from mainstream media sources, that the so-called blue wave has not materialized.  Early voting has favored Republican turnout, per NBC News, the Hill and other mainstream media sources that span the left-right media divide.

But every election comes down to counting each vote, and that means motivated voters must show up and cast their ballots wisely.

With the Trump agenda clearly supporting the interests of small-to-midsized manufactured home businesses and homeowners, isn’t it just logical to provide the Trump Administration with the Republicans in Congress that he needs to keep the momentum going?

Mr. Zell’s money would seem to indicate that, while Mr. Buffett’s dough continues to support building “the regulatory moat” that has grown Berkshire’s grasp over manufactured housing for some 15 years.

 

 

Connecting the Dots in MHVille

  • Accurate information,
  • a clear understanding of how manufactured home professionals and homeowners alike have purportedly been played by deep Democratic billionaires have held sway over the MHVille, big tech, and other industries,
  • how it could be broken up, following successful GOP midterms, via antitrust action by the Trump Administration.

For more on how that could play out, see the related reports, further below. That’s this morning’s “News through the lens of manufactured homes, and factory built housing,” © where “We Provide, You Decide.” ©. ## (News, analysis, and commentary.)

(Related Reports are further below. Third-party images and content are provided under fair use guidelines.)

1) To sign up in seconds for our MH Industry leading emailed news updates, click here.

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To see a sample of our emailed news update, click here. To sign up for the factory-built home industry’s #1 headline news, click here or the graphic above.

2) To pro-vide a News Tips and/or Commentary, click the link to the left. Please note if comments are on-or-off the record, thank you.

3) Marketing, Web, Video, Consulting, Recruiting and Training Re-sources

SoheylaKovachDailyBusinessNewsMHProNewsMHLivingNewsSubmitted 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 MHProNews, and MHLivingNews.com.

 

 

 

Related Reports:

Compelling Information for Renters and Manufactured Home Owners

 

Smoking Gun 3 – Warren Buffett, Kevin Clayton, Clayton Homes, 21st Mortgage Corp Tim Williams – Manufactured Home Lending, Sales Grab?

The Coming Breakup of Berkshire? MHI? Plus Sunday Headline Recap 10-14-2018 to 10-21-2018

 

 

 

Frank Rolfes, knowing how to find Limelight, touts ways to purchase and run ‘mobile home parks’

December 10th, 2014 Comments off

manufactured-homes-com=credit-posted-daily-business-news-mhpronewsWhile there are those in the manufactured home community side of the industry that abhor the ‘t-word’ or having their properties called ‘a mobile home park,’ on the other end of the spectrum is Frank Rolfe.

First, give the man and his associates their due. Their total communities would place them around #10 among the larger community owners.

Rolfe finds his way into the news, through stories like the New York Times’ Cold Hard Lessons of Mobile Home U,’ which drew a flurry of commentary, for and against by industry pros. The article sparked a recent comment by Dana Hawkins-Simmons in the National Housing Institute’s (NHI) e-publication, Rooflinesseen here.

In a recent article, Rolfe sounded off in favor of the National Community Council (NCC) recent fall event in Chicago and the NCC’s Vice President, Jenny Hodge. He took that opportunity to ‘dis’ a rival – and unnamed – community owner and consultant, who once appeared routinely at MHI and NCC events, and has since been marginalized by those organizations.

Writing in the Journal of Mfd Housing, under the heading, “The end of B.S. – thank heavens,” Rofle asserts,What was notable at the event was the absence of many self-styled gurus who people used to listen to. They have been discarded as the industry has grown up and the professional owner/operators demand concrete qualifications of their experts.”

The “Mobile Home U” partner says that no one questioned him at the Chicago NCC event about his use of terminology. Indeed, with video footage of MHI’s current chairman using similar terminology, it might make it difficult for some industry members at an event with both present to do so.

Says Rolfe’s, “The industry is poised for a major shift for the good, and childish arguments have been cast aside to make way for more important adult topics and negotiations.” On this point, there is wide agreement.

Indeed, the industry is poised for a major shift, but the debate over the use of the ‘t-word’ or ‘mobile home’ terminology is far from over, as the new interview with Murex Properties and NCC Chairman Steve Adler suggests. In fact, the just-posted article on the “Great American Trailer Park Christmas Musical” points to the heart of the impact of the very challenge that Rolfe claims is no longer an issue, namely image.

Dana Hawkins-Simmons and others such as NextStep CEO Stacey Epperson take an opposing view, believing what you call something matters to the public and thus to the industry.

Indeed, ELS Chairman Sam Zell famously said at last year’s NCC event, “Pencil head, it’s not a trailer park.”

Writing in NuWire, Rolfe outlined options for purchasing and financing a manufactured home community. Such articles are Rolfe’s way of getting and staying in the limelight, in order to attract a steady stream of attendees to “bus tours” of MHCs and “boot camps.” These draw potential investors, those who aren’t chasing the same locations the larger portfolio operators seek.

The Mobile Home U partner’s suggested ways to buy a community include,

  • Seller Financing
  • Bank Loans
  • Conduit
  • Master Lease with Option
  • Assignment

Give Frank Rolfe his due. Their operation grows, he has a swashbuckling style listeners find entertaining. Many of this boot camp graduates have gone on to varying degrees of success. He and his peers market, market, market.

The debate over proper use of terminology will rage on, with one wing showcasing a great image, and the other wing of the industry saying the public calls it a ‘trailer’ and ‘mobile home,’ why shouldn’t we?

But is the photo shown above what people imagine when you say the word “trailer” or “mobile home?”

Perhaps the 1.32 billion dollar sale of image-and-brand-building American Land Lease to Sun Communities might have settled that debate, but at least for now, that hasn’t resonated with enough people on the ‘mobile home’ terminology wing of the industry. ##

joseine-josie-thompson-writer-daily-business-news-mhpronews-com50x50-(Photo Credit: Manufactured Homes)

Article submitted by Josie Thompson to – Daily Business News – MHProNews.