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MIT Answers – What’s the Minimum Needed by Family of Four for Housing, Food in Each State in U.S.?

May 16th, 2019 No comments

 

MITAnswersWhatMinimumNeededFamily4FourForHousingFoodEachStateUSManufacturedHousingMHProNews

MIT is the famous and widely respected Massachusetts Institute of Technology.  They recently provided an update to what they call their “living wage calculator.”

 

The data shown is from CNBC based upon their use of MIT’s methodology.

 

MITMassachusettsInstituteTechnologyCambridgeMassWikipediaMHProNews

 

For those who look and say, ‘that’s too low,’ keep the following in mind.

The MIT Living Wage Calculator “…determines the minimum amount necessary to meet basic needs without dipping into poverty or relying on outside help.”  It doesn’t include restaurants meals, vacation or money left for savings and investment.

MIT explains that “It is a market-based approach that draws upon geographically specific expenditure data related to a family’s likely minimum food, childcare, health insurance, housing, transportation, and other basic necessities (e.g. clothing, personal care items, etc.) costs. The living wage draws on these cost elements and the rough effects of income and payroll taxes…”

  • For two adult families where both adults are in the labor force, both adults are assumed to be employed full-time.
  • Full-time work is assumed to be year-round, 40 hours per week for 52 weeks, per adult.

The Daily Business News on MHProNews make the obvious point at the end of this infographic.

 

MITLivingWageCalculatorMassInstituteTechCNBCHousingFoodEachStateManufacturedHousingMHProNews

 

The data, as noted, is for the minimum needed, vs the average or mean cost of housing in those same states. The figures shown routinely work for manufactured home sellers.  They routinely don’t work for conventional new home sellers but work somewhat better for existing home sellers.  MHProNews has made this point below for years.

HUD Secretary Ben Carson said it like this.

 

HUDSecretaryBenCarsonAffordableHousingManufacturedHomesQuotesManufacturedHousingConferenceMHProNews

HUDSecretaryBenCarsonAffordableHousingSupplyDemandCostSavingsFHFAAppreciationSustainableOwnership5000renters200000OwnersQuotesMHProNews

To see Secretary Carson’s entire address, click here.

There’s a good case to make that Secretary Carson is right.

MostMenAppearnNeverConsideredWhatHouseIsNeedlesslyPoorAllTheirLivesHenryDavidThoreauManufacturedHomeLivingNews

For newcomers to the website not familiar with modern manufactured homes, learn more by clicking the image above or the link here.

So why is manufactured housing struggling?  Among the reasons is a point made by controversial Frank Rolfe, who was nevertheless correct about the following.

 

Carson’s comments are not on the MHI website again today. Frank, when you are right, you are right.

What’s MHI thinking? Or are they working to suppress performance while posturing efforts? Here’s another longtime MHI member, George F. Allen, who said this.

 

WeveGotAProblemGeorgeFAllenQuoteCommunityInvestorEducateMHCSECOMobileHomeParkManufacturedHomesMHProNews

To see more disconnects between Allen and his flip-flops, then and now, click here.

The evidence for factors that could cause a surge in manufactured home performance are all around, for those willing to look at facts.

The road blocks for the industry routinely grace back to what Rolfe directly, and Allen obliquely pointed to – it arguably does includes MHI, which is dominated by Omaha-Knoxville and the ‘big boys.’

YouGetMoreOfWhatYouEncourageLessofWhatYouDiscourageMartyLavin

WhenWrittenInChineseCrisisComposedTwoCharactersOneDangerOtherOpportunityJohnFKennedyQuoteMHProNews

Learn more at the links below the byline and notices. That’s the promise, potential, and the problem in tonight’s manufactured housing “Industry News, Tips, and Views Pros Can Use,” © where “We Provide, You Decide.” © ## (News, analysis, and commentary.)

 

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George F. Allen’s Unity Call for MHI, MHARR, and National Association of Manufactured Housing Community Owners (NAMHCO) Examined

Clayton Homes, 21st Mortgage Corp, Vanderbilt Mortgage and Finance – Investor Lessons Learned

Manufactured Home Community Case Study, UMH Properties, Lessons for Independent Community Owners, Investors

Nathan Smith, SSK Communities, Manufactured Housing Institute Leader, Profitably Correcting the Record

Antitrust Heats Up With Supreme Court Ruling, Monopolization Legal Experts Weigh In, Clayton-Related Comment Connection

“Lead, Follow … Or Get Out of The Way”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Joe Stegmayer, George F. Allen, Manufactured Housing Institute Slogans, Slump, Slurs, Solutions

May 14th, 2019 No comments

 

JoeStegmayerPhotoCavcoIndustriesLogoManufacturedHousingInstituteLogoChairmanGeorgeFAllenPhotoSlogansSlumpSlursSolutionsMHProNews

Photo at left is a still from a YouTube video, posted further below.

The manufactured housing industry is now 7 months into a slump – a downturn. How is that possible, during an affordable housing crisis?  Is it incompetence?  Or something else?

 

While controversial himself in mainstream media reports for a variety of reasons, prominent Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) member Frank Rolfe is on record for calling out prior MHI Chairman Nathan Smith and the association for “hypocrisy.”

FrankRolfeMHIChairmanNathanSmithSSKCommunitiesHypocrisyQuote-MHProNews

Rolfe also accused MHI of failing to promote good news, while failing to defend against bad news.

FrankRolfeMHFundRVHorizonsMobileHomeUniversityDailyBusinessNewsManufacturedHomeIndustryResearchReportsDataAnalysisMHProNews595

The phrase ‘the industry’ is often a euphemism for MHI. While the two are obviously distinct, given that MHI is the industry’s umbrella association and larger than its rivals, there are reasons that phrase is used.

 

Despite his own controversies, did Rolfe make valid points in the quotes cited above?

Let’s look.

A recap of Nathan Smith, partner in SSK Communities, and their media and legal woes are linked below. It includes numerous mainstream media video reports, which underscored Rolfe’s first point.

 

Nathan Smith, SSK Communities, Manufactured Housing Institute Leader, Profitably Correcting the Record

 

The recent, useful – and largely favorable comments to the manufactured home industry in general – made by HUD Secretary Ben Carson in a speech last week  are of this morning at the date and time shown still not posted on MHI’s website. Why not? It is arguably good news for the industry at large. It was made at MHI’s own event.  Secretary Carson is in charge of the agency that has the primary federal oversight for manufactured housing.

Where is the MHI logic in not having a favorable talk spotlighted on their own website?  Again, this evidence makes a point Rolfe claimed about good news not being shared by MHI.

 

HUDSecBenCarsonMHILogowebsiteManufactuerdHousingInstituteLogo2019-05-14_0617MHProNews

 

This oddity begs questions. For example, is it only Rolfe at MHI who has expressed concerns about MHI? Hardly.

Kenny Lipschutz – whose firm is a MHI/National Communities Council (MHI/NCC) member – said the following in an interview with MHProNews.

 

KennyLipschutzHomeFirstCertifiedCommunitiesMHINCCmemberPuzzlesWhyMHIDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

 

Tom Fath is a partner in his family’s manufactured home community business. The sell new and pre-owned manufactured homes.  Their operations are reportedly doing well. Which makes Fath’s comments all the more striking.

 

TomFathCreatedAnIndustryUnderAssaultQuoteWeSucceedWhenCustomersAreHappyDailyBusinessNewsMHProNEws

This comment was a response to a critique of MHI and their ‘advertorial’ campaign. Fath was arguing that facts and consumer benefits should be stressed, rather than claims that actually undermined the industry’s credibility.

 

Is Fath alone? No.

Current and former MHI members have privately and publicly called out the trade group for being ineffective, for favoritism, for being an oligarchy, or of de facto working to consolidate the industry.

In 2017, state communities associations broke from MHI, saying the planned to form their own trade organization. They have since done so. Their founder explained their break from MHI as follows.

NealTHaneyNAMHCOWhyBreakawayfromManfuacturedHousingInstituteMHI

 

So, there are significant examples of MHI members – past and present – plus other industry business leaders – that have in word and deed voiced published concerns about the state of the industry in general, and often named MHI in particular.

 

 

One More Level

MHI’s current and 2 prior executive committee members, have all faced various troubling legal or problematic business practice allegations.

 

ManufacturedHousingInstituteLogoMHIBoardOfDirectorsLogoMHIExecutiveCommittee

Satirical logo by MHProNews, provided under fair use guidelines.

 

George F. Allen, along with Spencer Roane and Tom Lackey of SECO have had their own mainstream media woes.

 

TylerJettChatanoogaTimesFreePressManufacturedHousingIndustryDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

Allen and Roane have ‘taught’ selling contract for title at SECO or elsewhere, a practice that the New York Attorney General’s office and others have taken action against. https://www.timesfreepress.com/news/local/story/2018/may/26/industry-members-decline-take-sides-rossville/471775/

 

Allen has been an MHI critic in the past, as these pull quotes from his website remind industry professionals.

ManufacturedHousingIndustryMonopoly-Oligarchy-GeorgeAllen-PostedDailyBusinessNewsManufacturedHousingIndustryMHProNews-

George F.  Allen, has a modest following today, which once used to be a larger following. Once Allen was re-embraced by MHI’s leaders = purportedly to be a surrogate for them to blunt growing industry concerns and criticisms = Allen has muted his prior blasts, and has arguably turned instead at sliming MHI’s critics. 

 

But Allen, who was persona non grata just a few years ago at MHI, has more recently cozied up to and has been re-embraced by the Arlington, VA based association. Joe Stegmayer appeared again at Allen’s annual event in 2018.

 

 

Joe Stegmayer – as MHI’s Chairman – lends to the under-informed a certain credibility to Allen.  Allen in turn has purportedly attacked privately and publicly this publication for holding the industry’s power players to account. But instead of accepting the opportunity to disprove or debate the issues raised, Allen has resorted to slurs and a call to boycott MHProNews.

Allen’s call for a boycott is noteworthy, because it can be an element in antitrust law.  Allen has also used demonstrably flawed claims in a purported effort to slime the Manufactured Housing Association for Regulatory Reform (MHARR), which is trying to address underlying issues, and thereby help the industry return to growth. Attacking a trade group that is honestly and honorably seeking growth during an affordable housing crisis and while the industry is in a slump ought to be common sense.  Thus, Allen’s attacks on MHARR merits its own scrutiny. See that report, via the hot-linked text/image box linked below.  But once more, it also sparks further questions and concerns.

 

George F. Allen’s Unity Call for MHI, MHARR, and National Association of Manufactured Housing Community Owners (NAMHCO) Examined

 

There are evidence-based examples of how MHI leaders have directly and indirectly rewarded Allen and SECO, which he is associated with.

Now MH Village’s co-president, Darren Krolewski – who previously praised MHProNews for taking on the tougher issues – more recently has launched their own trade publication, which is of course their right.

DarrenKrolewskiPraisingMHProNewsDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

 

MHVillage’s Krolewski dubbed their new publication MHInsider, the first three letters of which spell MHI. They are in fact a prominent supporter of MHI. They have given Allen and SECO a lift via their own platform. Attempt to find an article in MHInsider that is critical of MHI or Clayton Homes. There are better odds of winning the lottery than finding a critique of any MHI or Berkshire Hathaway MH industry company leader, or of those who are the ‘big boys’ at the Arlington, VA based trade group.

Equity LifeStyle Properties (ELS) Howard Walker arguably had a different view on what should be done about good and bad news than what MHInsider- or the flip-flopping George F.(F?) Allen – has taken. The late Walker, JD and longtime vice chairman and a right hand man to Sam Zell, ELS’ chairman, said this.

HowardWalkerPhotoELSViceChairmanManufacturedHomeCOmmunitiesManufacturedHousingInstituteExecCommitteeMemberQuoteTransparencyMHProNews

Thoughtful words, worth pondering. See the story, linked here.

 

While it was before the more recent fact checks, it was after other examples of concerns and issues being raised by MHProNews not found elsewhere in the industry’s trade media. So not unlike the prior comment of praise by Krolewski, Walker said the following for publication.

HowardWalkerJDELSViceChairmanPhotoManufacturedHouisngInstituteMHIExecuitiveCommitteeBoardMemberDailyBUisnessNewsMHProNews

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

 

MHProNews has previously cited the need for good business ethics, quoting the following as an example.

HumanitiesValueBuisnessCriticismDissentWhenGoingAlongGetAlongWhereWhistleblowersDiscouragedBadThingsHappenBusinssesImplodeMarthaCNussbaumPhotoQuote

Design by MHProNews.

 

This publication has also promoted the notion of getting to the root issues of the industry’s challenges, citing Zig Ziglar as follows.

ProblemSolvingZigZiglarFirstStepRecognizetheProblemExistsNextIsProblemOurResponsiblityProblemSolvingVeryImportantDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

When the industry hit the start of its now 7-month slump, what have MHI’s leaders offered? Let’s look at some examples of ‘slogans vs. solutions.’

Last fall, when the corporate leaders of the trade group arguably knew that the downturn was underway, MHI produced a video promoting the association. The stills that follow are from that video and are provided under fair use guidelines for media.

 

MHIMembersChangingPerceptionOfManufacturedHousingMHILogoClaytonHomesLogoBerkshireHathawayLogoMHProNews

LeveragingCreationNewClassManufacturedHomesMHIDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

 

The first slogan was a claim of changing the perception of the industry.  If it was for the better, then why aren’t sales growing?

The next MHI claims is one of momentum.  This was clearly not true, unless they meant momentum in reverse?  Instead, what the ‘new class of homes’ project arguably has done is divert lending that ought to be going to all manufactured homes under the Housing and Economic Recovery Act (HERA) of 2008 away from all manufactured homes, to only a few ‘select’ homes.  Here’s how MHARR President and CEO, Mark Weiss, JD, phrased it.

MarkWeissDTSQuoteManufacturedHousingAssocRegulatoryReformMHARRDailyBusinessNewsMHproNews

MHI also claimed in their video to be promoting the industry. That may be true in a technical, fig leaf, or posturing sort of sense. But the lack of growth in manufactured housing shipments itself undermines the credibility of the Arlington, VA based trade group’s claim.

Nevertheless, to prove their point, MHI cited statistics that were wildly arguably misleading at best, or demonstrably deceptive at worst.

 

ManufacturedHousingInstituteLogoMHIVideoStillMHIPromotionalClaims

MHARRshipmentProductionMarch2019ManufacturedHousingReportMHProNews

While MHI in their monthly shipment report doesn’t deny the decline, neither are they addressing the underlying causes, nor have they proposed a remedy via their messages to the industry. Why not?

 

When, MHProNews called out the deception, and offered MHI and their leaders an opportunity to respond, MHI hired an outside attorney who issued a series of letter threatening this publication and specifically mentioned our showing these still video images. Some of the claims that MHI’s outside attorney made are dealt with in a report linked below.

 

Lanham Act, Monopolistic Housing Institute, err, Manufactured Housing Institute, Legal Bullies, and You

 

So instead of offering solutions, MHI has offered slogans. Instead of addressing legitimate concerns, they have threatened this publication that their own leaders have previously praised as being pro-industry.  Perhaps more to the point, as the quote below reveals, their leaders ought to know that they have to address bad news, as Rolfe suggested in the quote cited above.  If they know they should, but fail to do so, what does that say about the trade group?  What concerns does that raise?

TimWilliams21stMortgageCEOthenMHIChairmanGoodArgumentsRefuteEveryStatisticsRespondEveryStoryPBSDIckErnstDailyBusinessNewsmHPronews

 

Such facts puts MHI in an awkward spot, perhaps because MHProNews has cited investor relations reports by publicly trade MHI member companies that also point out the obvious truth that the industry is underperforming.

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In 1998, manufactured homes (MH) outsold RVs by some 3 to 2. In 2017, RVs outsold MHs by some 5 to 1. RVs recovered far more quickly from 2008. The facts raise questions. One, is the effectiveness of MHI as the post-production or ‘umbrella’ association in the country. The other question is more sobering. Has Buffett-Berkshire “Moat” strategies kept manufactured home production at historically low levels to allow a few big boy brands to consolidate others at a discounted ‘value’ by MHI insiders?

 

MHLivingNews, NAMHCO, the Manufactured Housing Association for Regulatory Reform for years, even a former MHI president on his exit message have raised concerns about the failures of MHI.

FormerManufacturedHousingInstitutePresidentChrisStinebertManufacturedHomeOwnersUrbanInstituteYouMHLivingNews

https://www.manufacturedhomelivingnews.com/former-manufactured-housing-institute-president-manufactured-home-owners-urban-institute-and-you/

 

What has MHI done in a practical way to address the issues? At their recent Congress and Expo, they offered this slogan – “Let’s Keep Building.”

Slogans coupled with an action plan are fine. But where is MHI’s action plan? After all, they claim themselves to represent the interests of all segments of the industry, per the following from their website this morning. The commentary in the blue boxes are by MHProNews.

ManufacturedHousingInstituteMHILogoPhotoOnlyTradeOrganizationrepresentingallsegmentsfactorybuilthousing2019-05-14_0808

 

It should be noted that not all in the industry are sliding.  The article below is but one example of a firm that is bucking the trend.  That clearly implies that others can too.

 

 

Which begs the question, what the devil is going in with MHI’s so-called leadership?  What are the ‘powers that be’ behind MHI actually doing?

 

 

What’s Going On?

The largest corporate force behind MHI are the Warren Buffett led Berkshire Hathaway owned brands. A survey of troubling mainstream media reports about their behavior is linked below.

 

Clayton Homes, 21st Mortgage Corp, Vanderbilt Mortgage and Finance – Investor Lessons Learned

 

Before several of these episodes occurred, became known, or were coming into focus, Clayton, 21st, and MHI supported the Preserving Access to Manufactured Housing Act. In hindsight, was the entire bill a ruse? A head fake designed to consolidate the industry into ever fewer hands?

 

That’s what a more detailed report, fact-checks, and analysis linked below examines.

 

Rope-a-Dope – Preserving Access to Manufactured Housing Act, Mom, Dad, & You

 

 

There are already several federal investigations reportedly underway with respect to Clayton Homes, and their related lenders.  Former Clayton division president Joe Stegmayer, Cavco Industries are under an SEC subpoena, to name but a few of the publicly known federal investigations.

 

 

But sources tell MHProNews, that other investigations – federal and others – are also underway.

The fact-checks by MHLivingNews of the recent Last Week Tonight with John Oliver revealed that each firm the satirical, sharp hit on “Mobile Homes” made was on a MHI member connected firm.

 

Warren Buffett has been documented to have financially supported via so-called ‘dark money’ channels the organizations that attacked his own brands, and MHI firms.

 

 

It is with that backdrop that publisher L. A. ‘Tony’ Kovach takes a deeper dive into what in hindsight was arguably the true goal of the Preserving Access to Manufactured Housing Act. Tony Kovach raises the questions, have more than just antitrust laws been broken? Are possible fraud and RICO concerns valid?

That ‘deeper dive’ report is linked here.

It is far more pleasant being a cheer leader when one has something honest and honorable to cheer. But to fail to call out real problems is to betray readers who are looking for solutions, not slogans, slurs, slimes, or dodges.

SnearMudThrowingTacticsUsedWorkToDuckDodgeDebatePixabayMastheadCommentaryMHPronews

While surrogate writers for the powers that be – like Allen – purportedly use diversionary, smear or slime tactics vs. engaging in an actual – robust discussion or debate – MHProNews continues to follow the evidence, follow the money, and does fact checks to uncover what the underlying issues actually point toward.

 

DuckDodgeDismissDistractDetractDefameFromIssueTacticsByThoseWithNoGoodAnswersMHProNews-768x609

RickRobinsonSrVPGenCounselManufacturedHousingInstituteHUDSecBenCarsonMHILogoDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

Robinson is a good speaker, good writer and likeable person, says MHProNews publisher, L. A. “Tony” Kovach. The questions that they duck and dodge will only continue until they are properly addressed in a transparent way, he opines.

LATonyKovachHenryFordQuotesPrettyPicturesAchieveGoalsDailyBusinessNewsProNews

Therefore, while Joe Stegmayer and George F. (F?) Allen are playing footsie – or MHInsider and the bulk of the others in the manufactured home industry’s trade media other than MHLivingNews or MHProNews ignore the vexing issues – or slime those such as MHARR for raising logical concerns and for offering solutions – our pro-growth platforms will continue to promote the good news about manufactured housing, while holding to account those who are behaving in problematic ways.

That’s today’s third look at “Industry News, Tips, and Views Pros Can Use,” © 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.

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Manufactured Home Community Case Study, UMH Properties, Lessons for Independent Community Owners, Investors

 

MHARR Calls on HUD Secretary to End Discriminatory And Exclusionary Zoning of HUD-Regulated Manufactured Homes

Warren Buffett’s Profitable Lessons for Manufactured Housing

May 5th, 2019 Comments off

 

WarrenBuffettsProfitableLessonsforManufacturedHousing

“”We can afford to lose money – even a lot of money. But we can’t afford to lose reputation – even a shred of reputation,” wrote Warren Buffett to managers,” according to a post on the Wall Street Journal’s Facebook page.

 

Now contrast that with the investment-focused Motley Fool’s citation of the famous Buffett quote: “Rule No. 1: Never lose money. Rule No. 2: Don’t forget rule No. 1.

Do these two fabled Buffett quotes complement or contradict each other?

We deliberately avoid answering that today.

Ladies and gentlemen professionally involved in manufactured housing land – what we lovingly refer to here on MHProNews as MHVille – those Buffett quotes bear close scrutiny.

Beyond the words, so too does the actual behavior of Buffett and Berkshire Hathaway’s brands.

It is not that Mr. Buffett is necessarily wrong.  As one of the top four wealthiest people in the world, he’s proven his ability to attract investment capital and make money for the long term.

The question is, how has Buffett achieved that wealth in recent years? Say the last two decades?

No two people agree on everything. We need others in our lives as reality checks. If Marty Lavin never gave MHProNews any more on-the-record quotes than those already given, the ones we have from him are highly valuable to those wise enough to grasp and apply them routinely. It isn’t that Marty invented these sayings; he did not. But as a significantly successful person in manufactured home financing – with real manufactured home (MH) community and high-volume MH retail experience –  what he said is as useful – perhaps more so – as those Buffett quotes are.  Once more, with gusto…

  • Pay more attention to what people do than what they say.
  • Follow the money.

These Lavin tips have been used by detectives, serious reporters, and other researchers for decades.

What they point to, without saying it, is the value of authentic history.

Let’s pair that with what pro-manufactured housing investor Robert Robotti said about investing. “In order to outperform the market, you have to have a contrarian point of view,” Robotti said to the Motley Fool investment media.

 

“Out-Performing the Market” Robert Robotti, Value Investing, and Manufactured Housing

 

In an organization, one needs a significant degree of compliance by team members. No factory could function successfully without team members doing their jobs well. No financing operation could profit, unless team members do their jobs well.  I know, because I’ve seen and experienced these things first hand.

But in order to achieve a breakthrough, one has to be able to step out of the box. If someone stays only inside the box, by definition, no progress is ever made.

We need to be able to celebrate the good that someone has done, while recognizing that they are bound to have flaws. Let’s give some examples, and then return to the profitable MH theme.

We like many of the quotes that the Reverend Martin Luther King, Jr. has given us to ponder. He was surprisingly successful, but that success was not overnight. It took time, persistence, a kind of urgent patience. King was wise, but he was reputedly also a womanizer. Can’t imagine that his wife liked that reputation, can you?

A couple in the White House today have a similar challenge. But unlike the defense that much of the mainstream media gave Bill Clinton while he was president, or the cover for womanizing given to John F. Kennedy while he was president, Donald J. Trump’s past womanizing is treated quite differently. Before he ran for  president, Mr. Trump was celebrated for the same thing he is now denigrated for doing. What’s up with that? That’s not to attack the other 2, nor to defend the 45th president on that score. It is only to reflect that a double standard exists.  It is also to reflect how helpful history is.  Now, let’s take that back to MHVille.

People have to be able to discern reality, to find what is true, and separate the ‘wheat from the chaff.’  There are things Mr. Buffett has said that are insightful, useful, and true.  That doesn’t mean I have to agree with Buffett’s reputed business practices. Wheat from chaff.  Discern what is useful, then act upon that, and your odds for success go up.

Before diving into our weekly headline review, and we have some doozies for you, let me make one more observation. There have been some famous – but later convicted – con men in our nation’s history. People who were so respected, until they were found out.  Once exposed, they where then reviled. Let’s mention only one to make the point.

Bernie Madoff is described like this by Wikipedia, “Description: Bernard Lawrence Madoff is an American former market maker, investment advisor, financier, fraudster, and convicted felon, who is currently serving a federal prison sentence for offenses related to a massive Ponzi scheme.”

Madoff was celebrated, until he was vilified.  By the way, not all cons are alike.

 

BernieMadoffWikiManufacturedHousingIndustryMHProNews

 

Now will the day may come that fans of Buffett — or an infinitely lesser light in MHVille, part-time magician George F. Allen — feel the same about them as they do now about Madoff?

Some sing the praises of the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI). But look at the fact that every one of the corporate industry embarrassments in MHVille named by John Oliver’s “Mobile Homes” video was connected to a firm connected to MHI. Pray tell. What exactly are the leaders at MHI being celebrated for accomplishing?  Other than the increasing consolidation occurring in MHVille?

Cons are often celebrated, until they are finally understood, and then they are fully exposed. Some cons, like Madoff, go to prison.

To grasp those highly profitable lessons, one needs the perspective of history. That requires real history, not fake history. Discerning the truth requires real analysis, not fake analysis.

To be sustainably successful in MHVille, one needs to know when to duplicate – as in a training the line workers in a factory – and when to innovate. The later – innovation – means you have to be willing to be a contrarian at the proper times.

Before closing, let me tip the hat to Jim Ayotte for a statement he made that applies to everyone, not just top-tier association executives. “As an association executive, my job is to assess the situation and seek the best possible outcome based on the facts as I know them.”  Publishers, writers, sales professionals, business owners, line workers – everyone could apply this principle Ayotte made to themselves.

None of us don’t know what we don’t know.  That’s why we need others! But once we begin to suspect something different than what we thought we knew, it becomes parament to pivot to whatever that liberating – and often profitable – truth is.  Albert Einstein was right in saying you don’t keep repeating the same mistakes over and over if you plan to progress.

The reason that a con like Madoff’s or others arguably succeeds for as along as they do is because people are not willing to admit that they have been conned.  They are in denial. They may be embarrassed. Or they may have some other fear.

But the mature, secure adult admits an error.  If the error is that they were conned, one must make that admission, but then the solution is to move beyond the error.  That’s how profitable learning is done.  Objective history is a vital part of that process.

To my knowledge, there is no other manufactured home industry publisher that has the degree of historic and practical insights into manufactured housing reality than we do.  Not bragging, it is what it is.

 

HumanitiesValueBuisnessCriticismDissentWhenGoingAlongGetAlongWhereWhistleblowersDiscouragedBadThingsHappenBusinssesImplodeMarthaCNussbaumPhotoQuote

Wheat and chaff. Take the good insights someone offers, the useful lessons, and ignore whatever may be problematic. Designs by MHProNews.

 

DannyGloverQuoteItsNotOnlyAMonopolyOfWealthItsAmonopolyofInformationasWellDailyBusinessNewsMHproNEws

Danny Glover quote from the fascinating video documentary, Shadows of Liberty, posted on the linked page here.

YouMHProNewsSeemToHaveConceptualIQThatIsMoreImportantThanSpellingAbilityQuote

Many of these quotes are from MHI insiders.

 

IfMHProNewsIswritingAboutItIWantToKnowAboutItQuoteMaybe those fact-checks and historic insights are why we are the runaway

most-read in MHVille – by fans, foes, and profitable truth-seekers alike?  People put up with our typos because we have something worth putting up with.

We are getting a growing number of calls and messages from investors and their representatives.  They don’t buy the Arlington line.  If those outside looking in don’t buy it, why should you?  Folks, the industry is about to go through a shakeup. I’m not predicting a date, but don’t just mark your calendar. prepare for it yourself.  Start with staying truly informed, and avoid the deceptions that profit others but are costing independents, perhaps like you.

DearTonySoheylaNoGreaterResourceSpeakstoIssuesOpportunitiesWeFaceAsIndependentRetailersGusRodriguezTejasHomesTX

Gus’ message came in response to a series of exposes on issues within manufactured housing, as well as tips, strategies and opportunities.

HowardWalkerEmergenceOfTonyKovachsPublicationsProfessionalsFilledVacuumDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

With no further adieu, let’s dive into the headlines from the varied corners of MHVille during the week that just was.

 

What’s New on the Masthead

TheMastheadCommentaryLATonyKovachMHProNews

Multibillion Dollar Opportunities Knock in Solving Affordable Housing Crisis

Multibillion Dollar Opportunities Knock in Solving Affordable Housing Crisis

 

What’s New in Washington, D.C. From MHARR

MHARRlogoDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews324

MHCC Addresses Multiple Issues, HUD Secretary Carson Praises Manufactured Homes at Meeting

MHCC Addresses Multiple Issues, HUD Secretary Carson Praises Manufactured Homes at Meeting

MHARR Calls on HUD Secretary to End Discriminatory And Exclusionary Zoning of HUD-Regulated Manufactured Homes

MHARR Calls on HUD Secretary to End Discriminatory And Exclusionary Zoning of HUD-Regulated Manufactured Homes

 

What’s New on MHLivingNews

MHLivingNewsImprovedLivingForLe$$taglinedropshadow

MHLivingNews features lifestyle and living news on prefab housing, with a focus on manufactured homes.

Conventional or Manufactured Housing – Facts Matter, and Public Engagement Matters Too

Ultimate Reporters, Researchers, Affordable Housing Advocates, or Shoppers 3’rd Party Research 

 

What’s New on the Daily Business News on MHProNews

11DailyBusinessNewsMHProNewsLogos 

Saturday 5.4.2019

George F. Allen’s Unity Call for MHI, MHARR, and National Association of Manufactured Housing Community Owners (NAMHCO) Examined

George F. Allen’s Unity Call for MHI, MHARR, and National Association of Manufactured Housing Community Owners (NAMHCO) Examined

 

Friday 5.3.2019 

Jobs Surge in April, Unemployment Rate Falls to the Lowest Since 1969, plus Manufactured Home Market Updates

Jobs Surge in April, Unemployment Rate Falls to the Lowest Since 1969, plus Manufactured Home Market Updates

HUD Secretary Carson on National TV, Touting Manufactured Housing, More Jobs & Investment Opportunities

HUD Secretary Carson on National TV, Touting Manufactured Housing, More Jobs & Investment Opportunities

Governor Signs 18’ Wide Single-Section Bill

Governor Signs 18’ Wide Single-Section Bill

Cowards, How Winning Is Done, and Manufactured Housing

Cowards, How Winning Is Done, and Manufactured Housing

 

Thursday 5.2.2019 

Holocaust Remembrance Day, You Don’t Know What Tough Is, and Ramadan

Holocaust Remembrance Day, You Don’t Know What Tough Is, and Ramadan

Top Ten Smaller Cities Millennials Moving to For Lower Housing Cost, Plus Stock Updates

Top Ten Smaller Cities Millennials Moving to For Lower Housing Cost, Plus Stock Updates

HUD Secretary Ben Carson Surprise Appearance at Manufactured Housing Consensus Committee, Exclusive Quotes – Addressing Manufactured Home Industry

HUD Secretary Ben Carson Surprise Appearance at Manufactured Housing Consensus Committee, Exclusive Quotes – Addressing Manufactured Home Industry

Warning – Number 1 Manufactured Housing State, Texas – Reports Month Over Month Rise, Year over Year Shipment Decline Continues

Warning – Number 1 Manufactured Housing State, Texas – Reports Month Over Month Rise, Year over Year Shipment Decline Continues

 

Wednesday 5.1.2019

Newly Published Regional State Data Reflects Gainers, Losers in New Manufactured Homes Shipped

Newly Published Regional State Data Reflects Gainers, Losers in New Manufactured Homes Shipped

One Word From Fed’s Jerome Powell Sent Stocks Lower, Plus Manufactured Housing Market Updates  

Skyline Champion (SKY) Hedge Fund Dumps Shares, Value Declines

Skyline Champion (SKY) Hedge Fund Dumps Shares, Value Declines

MHARR Weighs in, HUD Secretary Carson Letter – “Discriminatory…Exclusionary Zoning of HUD-Regulated Manufactured Homes”

MHARR Weighs in, HUD Secretary Carson Letter – “Discriminatory…Exclusionary Zoning of HUD-Regulated Manufactured Homes”

 

Tuesday 4.30.2019 

New Manufactured Home Community Research Data – Site Fees, Occupancy Survey, YoY Changes, 20 Top U.S. Markets

New Manufactured Home Community Research Data – Site Fees, Occupancy Survey, YoY Changes, 20 Top U.S. Markets

Barron’s Big Money Manager Survey Democratic, Trump, Congress Result$, plus MH Stock Updates

Barron’s Big Money Manager Survey Democratic, Trump, Congress Result$, plus MH Stock Updates

National Association of Home Builders Co-Hosting HUD Innovative Housing Showcase

National Association of Home Builders Co-Hosting HUD Innovative Housing Showcase

Wall Street Expects POTUS Trump Reelection in 2020, MHVille First Looks

Wall Street Expects POTUS Trump Reelection in 2020, MHVille First Looks

 

Monday 4.29.2019

Prosperity Now, Nonprofits Sustain John Oliver’s “Mobile Homes” Video in Their Reports

Prosperity Now, Nonprofits Sustain John Oliver’s “Mobile Homes” Video in Their Reports

Cruise Ship Retiring at Sea? Will it Eat Into 55 Plus Community or Assisted Living? Plus, Manufactured Home Market Updates

Cruise Ship Retiring at Sea? Will it Eat Into 55 Plus Community or Assisted Living? Plus, Manufactured Home Market Updates

New Investigation, Insider Trades, Hedge Fund Dumps Cavco Industries (CVCO)

New Investigation, Insider Trades, Hedge Fund Dumps Cavco Industries (CVCO)

Secretary Carson Letter Lights Fuse for Explosive Change, Obliquely Addresses Manufactured Housing Action Concerns

Secretary Carson Letter Lights Fuse for Explosive Change, Obliquely Addresses Manufactured Housing Action Concerns

 

Sunday 4.28.2019 

Manufactured Housing – White Hats, Black Hats, Investing, Consumers, MH Independents

 

Manufactured Housing – White Hats, Black Hats, Investing, Consumers, MH Independents

 

Time is money. Knowledge is potential power.  When you slow down enough to learn what you need to know, to read what you need to know, the odds go up that you’ll advance faster. “We Provide, You Decide.” © ## (News, commentary, analysis.)

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Office 863-213-4090 |Connect on LinkedIn:
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Mobile Home Militia – “Clayton [Homes] Wants Your Cornbread Too” “Join the Revolution” – ‘You Gotta Have Swagger’

Manufactured Housing Institute Members Defending MHI, Great Debate About Manufactured Home Industry Progress, Problems, and Profits

God’s Sense of Humor, Tilting After Windmills, Manufactured Housing – Merchants or Crusaders?

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

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Fact Check, Darren Krolewski, MHInsider Claim on 2019 Louisville Show Attendance

March 25th, 2019 Comments off

 

FactCheckDarrenKrolewskiMHInsiderClaim2019LouisvilleShowAttendenceMHProNews

Darren Krolewski, Co-President at MHVillage and publisher of their MHInsider magazine made another bold claim in their most recent issue.  As regular and close readers of MHProNews fact-checks may recall, a problematic claim was made in their prior issue too, and no known correction of that factual error took place.

 

In that prior instance, they made an outrageously high claim for the number of new home sales that claimed were being made by a Clayton Homes retail center.  Even MHProNews sources with Clayton denied the accuracy of the overblown MHInsider reported statistics.

In this fact-check instance, Krolewski personally said that in 2019, they had the biggest attendance of any Louisville Show in the 60-year history of the event.

Seriously?

DarrenKrowleksiPage5MarApr2019MHInsiderLogoFalseClaimMHVillegeLogoDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

 

First, common-sense alone tells an informed manufactured home industry reader or investor that when this segment of the factory-built home industry is at only about 75% under its last peak in 1998, that outrageous claim on its face doesn’t make much sense.  There were thousands of more retailers years ago, not to mention more communities, suppliers, producers, lenders and so on.

 

ManufacturedHomesAsPercentageofSinglefamilyHousingStartsDailyBusinessNewsMHProNewsSkylineChampionSKY780x943

 

Second, the industry today is doing only about 20 percent of what it produced in the early 1970s. See the shipment graphic, provided by another Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) member, Skyline-Champion (SKY).

Third, Danny Ghorbani used to run the Louisville Manufactured Housing Show as a vice president for the Manufactured Housing Institute in the 1970s. When asked by MHProNews about the attendance, he said the show drew roughly 10,000 attendees a year back in the day.  That would be several times higher than the 2019 turnout.  Ghorbani stressed that the show was a national event then, and is only a regional show now.

Keep in mind as well that the number of new home display units in Louisville declined in 2019, a fact they show management, MHVillage, and MHI can’t hide.  At its peak, by contrast, the Louisville Show used to have over 150 or more factory-built homes on display.  That’s several times bigger than what the show has been in recent years.  Homes used to occupy several show halls. This year, exhibitor space and display unit totals both decline.  Is MHVillage/MHInsider giving cover to MHI for troubling signs ahead?

DannyGhorbaniFormerMHIVpQuoteFoundingMHARRPresidentQuoteDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

What Does This Obvious Error by MHVillage/MHInsider Means?

At a minimum, this is another example of either an obvious error that a manufactured home industry knowledgeable editor should catch, or perhaps is an example of a deliberately false or “fake news” claim.  The problem is this is a pattern of repeated errors, not a one-off.  See another recent example from MHInsider below. But why would they be making obviously mistaken or fake claims?

 

PatrickRevereRetailersSeeHighDemandMHinsiderLogoMHVillageLogoDailyBusinessNewsMHProNewsFactCheck

 

Legacy Housing monitored their results of their most recent promotion.  Casey Mack, made the following statement. Additional details are found here and here, or further below.  Rephrased, part of this might be puffery on the part of MHVillage/MHInsider.  They may be posturing for the sake of advertisers.   But beyond that, this purported pattern of “fake news” all seems to point in one direction.  Namely, to make the readers of such false information believe that times are better than they actually are.  The industry in numerous markets is in months of decline, not growth.  Where is there such an admission by Krolewski, MHInsider, or MHI?

CaseyMackTonySoheylaMHProNewsTeamFirstCallDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

 

While several speculative notions could be floated as to why this occurs, one point is clear.  MHInsider repeatedly themselves makes or publish the claims of others that appear exaggerated on their face or are perhaps deliberately misleading.  Either way, it is part of an ongoing pattern that pro-Manufactured Housing Institute MHInsider has exhibited for some time.

For just one example of a growing industry crisis, where are their reports on problems like the one reported in MHVille only by MHProNews, in the hot-linked text-image box below?

 

Urgency Grows, Another City Prepares Ban on Manufactured Homes

 

These are the issues that cause manufactured home retailers real or metaphorical heartburn. Why doesn’t MHInsider, MHR, or other industry publishers aligned with MHI cover these same concerns?

 

Mobile Home Militia – “Clayton [Homes] Wants Your Cornbread Too” “Join the Revolution” – ‘You Gotta Have Swagger’

 

Wittingly or not, these articles by MHInsider are akin to purported propaganda techniques being used by MHI, their surrogates, and select MHI members While the industry is routinely being buffeted by several problematic issues, MHInsider routinely makes it seem that all is sunshine and roses, forgetting that the later always has thorns.

 

MHI’s Growth Agenda? Rick Robinson, JD, SVP Manufactured Housing Institute, Preemption Evidence, Writ of Mandamus, and Addressing HUD Code Manufactured Home Shipment Woes

 

DarrenKrolewskiPraisingMHProNewsDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

Darren and others at MHI praised the fact checks and ‘thankless‘ pro-growth work based upon reality, not falsehoods.

 

The Daily Business News on MHProNews believes in accuracy.  While anyone – including us – can get typos or such accidental mistakes, factual errors beg for correction. Where is MHInsider’s mature admission of such mistakes?

 

As Affordable Housing Crisis Rages, New HUD Code Manufactured Housing Shipments Fall, Some States Drop 35-40 Percent

 

Fake news or false hype are apparently aimed to make manufactured home industry pros and independents think things are better than they are.  MHInsider, MHI, or MHR each provide examples that sadly don’t help manufactured home pros recover from the very real challenges faced in zoning, financing, public acceptance, and the like.  These are issues that MHProNews, MHARR, NAMHCO, and others will be exploring at Tunica Thursday March 28 at 12:15 PM.  We’ve documented the problems for some years, now it is time for industry professionals to organize and take the steps towards cures.

 

2019TunicaManufacturedHousingShowDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

ProblemSolvingZigZiglarFirstStepRecognizetheProblemExistsNextIsProblemOurResponsiblityProblemSolvingVeryImportantDailyBusinessNewsMHProNewsTonyKovachbookshelfJimCollinsWeathermanRainLATonyKovachDailyBuisnessNewsMHProNews

 

See the related reports below the byline for more on the special Tunica Show event.  RSVP and sign up for our industry leading emailed headline news that sources say Krolewski, George Allen, and Ken Rishel – all MHInsider writers – among others read closely, per their confidants.

 

DearTonySoheylaNoGreaterResourceSpeakstoIssuesOpportunitiesWeFaceAsIndependentRetailersGusRodriguezTejasHomesTX

Gus’ message came in response to a series of exposes on issues within manufactured housing, as well as tips, strategies and opportunities.

 

That’s  from manufactured housing most read and most trusted “Industry News, Tips, and Views Pros Can Use,” © ## (News, analysis, and commentary.)

 

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Arrested! Attorney General Files Charges on Manufactured and Modular Home Retailer, Police Arrest Suspect

February 20th, 2019 Comments off

 

ArrestedNYAGFilesChargesManufacturedModularHomeRetailerValueHomesSherrieBurtonDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

In a press release to the Daily Business News on MHProNews, is the following from the New York State Attorney General’s (NY AG) office.

 

The release contains the details of the suspect arrested and charged with swindling over a $1 million dollars from would-be buyers of factory-built homes.  The NY AG’s release will be followed by additional, related news, an ABC affiliate’s video, plus some commentary and links to related issues.

 

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Shown under fair use guidelines for media.

Attorney General James And NYS Police Announce Arrest Of Upstate Resident For Scheme To Defraud Over 40 Homebuyers

Sherrie A. Burton, Owner of Valued Homes, Charged With Stealing Over $1 Million from Buyers of Modular and Manufactured Homes throughout Upstate New York  

UPSTATE NEW YORK – Attorney General Letitia James and State Police Acting Superintendent Keith Corlett announced today the arrest of Sherrie A. Burton for defrauding homebuyers throughout Upstate New York of over $1 million. The defendant was arraigned today on a 9-count felony complaint including charges of Grand Larceny in the Second and Third Degrees and Scheme to Defraud in the First Degree. A joint investigation by the Attorney General’s Criminal Enforcement and Financial Crimes Bureau and the New York State Police revealed that Burton allegedly used her businesses, Valued Manufactured Housing, Inc. (“VMH”) and Valued Homes (“VH”) to fraudulently solicit deposits, down payments, and even full cash payments from unsuspecting customers of modular and manufactured homes. She then allegedly used the money for personal expenses and to further her ongoing scheme.   

“We will never tolerate any fraudulent behavior that takes advantage of hardworking New Yorkers,” said Attorney General Letitia James. “Instead of fulfilling the dream of homeownership, Ms. Burton allegedly defrauded homebuyers and used their savings for her personal expenses and gains. My office will continue to aggressively investigate and prosecute anyone who engages in activities that harm our residents.” 

“I applaud the work performed on this case by the New York State Attorney General’s office and our State Police Investigators,” said Acting New York State Police Superintendent Keith M. Corlett. “This individual perpetuated a devious scheme to defraud hardworking New Yorkers out of thousands of dollars for her own gain. Because of the strong collaboration among law enforcement, we were able to expose this fraud. The State Police will continue to work with our law enforcement partners to end these types of fraudulent practices and hold accountable those who prey on innocent people.” 

According to the felony complaint and statements by the prosecution in court, between at least March 2015 and July 2018, the defendant operated VMH and VH in South Glens Falls, Saratoga County, which offered to sell homebuyers newly built manufactured and modular homes. Manufactured homes are factory-built houses engineered and constructed to the specifications of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development’s federal building code, while modular homes are factory-built homes that are built to state building standards. Both manufactured and modular homes are transported on a carrier and permanently set on a foundation.   

Prosecutors allege that Burton falsely represented to customers that they needed to put a substantial deposit in order for the manufacturer to begin construction of their new home, while in reality the manufacturers did not require such a deposit.  Burton then allegedly diverted the deposits for her own use, instead of using them towards the purchase of the victims’ homes.  In other multiple instances, Burton allegedly used the deposits to pay her own personal expenses, including purchases at Zynga Games, Amazon.com and the Home Shopping Network, expenditures at Turning Stone Resort and Casino, payments for hotels, groceries, gas and alcohol, credit card payments, and cash withdrawals. In other instances, Burton allegedly used deposits from new victims to further her ongoing scheme by paying manufacturers for homes she had promised to prior customers months before. 

Also according to prosecutors, Burton obtained financing to purchase floor plan or display models, yet sold them as new models to many customers, leaving the victims without legal title to the home and the lenders believing the homes were still on display at her showroom.   

In one instance, a victim received a home from Burton but could not obtain title allowing her to insure or borrow against the home for over a year. In another instance, a victim provided a deposit of $8,000 to Burton, who never remitted the money to the manufacturer, and the victim therefore had to obtain a mortgage for the full price of the home — essentially paying the deposit twice. Many customers who paid Burton never received a home, and never got a refund of their money. 

Burton was charged in the Attorney General’s felony complaint, filed today in Saratoga County,  with three counts of Grand Larceny in the Second Degree, a class C felony, five counts of Grand Larceny in the Third Degree, a class D felony, and one count of Scheme to Defraud in the First Degree, a class E felony. 

The Attorney General’s investigation is ongoing. According to the prosecution, the investigation has thus far uncovered over 40 victims of Burton’s scheme in and around Upstate New York, who were allegedly defrauded out of over $1 million.   

Burton, 64, was arraigned today in Town of Moreau Justice Court before the Honorable Jeffrey B. McCabe. Bail was set in the amount of $75,000 cash or $150,000 bond. 

If convicted of all counts, Burton faces up to 10 to 20 years in state prison. The charges against the defendant are allegations and the defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.    

The criminal investigation commenced after multiple victims filed complaints with the Attorney General’s Consumer Protection Bureau. To protect yourself from becoming a victim of a home or property sale scam, Attorney General James offered the following tips: 

  • Before contracting for a large purchase, DO YOUR HOMEWORK:
  • Ask for references and call them.
  • Research online for complaints:
  • Check the better Business Bureau website and review the basis for their rating, including the complaint summaries, which are usually available online.  If you see anything that gives you pause, take your business elsewhere.
  • Be wary of providing a large deposit upfront.  Remember, if the business fails, you will likely not get your deposit back.
  • If you give a deposit that is supposed to be used for a specific purpose, demand proof that it has been applied to that purpose.
  • Review any contract carefully before signing it and keep a copy for your records. You will be bound by the contract terms — any oral representations made are unenforceable.
  • If you believe you have been scammed as part of a home or property sale, submit a complaint to the New York State Attorney General’s Office: https://ag.ny.gov/consumer-frauds/Filing-a-Consumer-Complaint

 

Attorney General James thanks the New York State Police Bureau of Criminal Investigations and Financial Crimes Unit for their valuable assistance on this investigation.  

Consumer complaints were handled by Assistant Attorneys General Amy Schallop and Emily Auletta of the Attorney General’s Consumer Frauds and Protection Bureau, under the supervision of Deputy Bureau Chief Laura J. Levine and Bureau Chief Jane Azia. 

The criminal case is being prosecuted by Assistant Attorney General Philip V. Apruzzese and Special Counsel Benjamin S. Clark of the Attorney General’s Criminal Enforcement and Financial Crimes Bureau, with the assistance of Legal Support Analysts Kira M. Russom, Rebecca Jacobson, and Supervising Analyst Paul Strocko. The Bureau is led by Bureau Chief Stephanie Swenton and Deputy Bureau Chief Joseph D’Arrigo. The Criminal Division is led by Chief Deputy Attorney General José Maldonado. 

The OAG investigation was conducted by Investigator Samuel Scotellaro, III, under the supervision of Supervising Investigator Mark Spencer and Deputy Bureau Chief Antoine Karam. The Investigations Bureau is led by Chief John Reidy.  

— end of NY AG’s Press Release —

 

 

Local Media

With but one factual error, that the news source themselves then clarified/corrected, the Daily Gazette made some useful additional points to the above.

Also, prosecutors allege, Burton would obtain financing to buy floor plan or display homes and sell them as new. This left victims without legal title to the home and left lenders believing the homes were still on display at her business.” Those display models, if they were purchased new, are new in the eyes of the law.  But the practice described is known in the industry as ‘Sold out of Trust’ or sometimes as SoT for short.

The following is also from the Daily Gazette, and lays out some insightful background.

The Better Business Bureau revoked its accreditation of Valued Manufactured Housing on Nov. 15, 2018, for not making a good-faith effort to resolve the disputes. 

The BBB website shows 10 of these complaints, some with responses. 

On Jan. 17, 2017, “Bruce and Sherrie” gave a lengthy explanation for the situation that led to a complaint and a promise to resolve the matter. 

On Aug. 30, 2018, in the same response to multiple complaints, the unidentified writer states that she is distraught at her own incompetence; that the family business is shut down after 26 years; that her son Jeremy and her husband were integral to the business and had both died; and that she’d made arrangements with a builder so that customers would get their homes and not lose their money.

An obituary published in his native Utica indicates Bruce Burton died Feb. 12, 2017, and that he was predeceased by his son Jeremy.”

 

There are several takeaways from this incident.  In no particular order of importance:

  • The New York State AG’s tips to home seekers are relevant, but it clearly should apply to all housing being sold or leased, not just factory-built homes. For example, scams on Craigslist or elsewhere involving conventional housing are legion.
  • The NY AG has previously brought to heel manufactured home community operators who were doing ‘contract for title’ or ‘rent to own’ a.k.a. ‘lease to own’ purchases, which are arguably errantly are still promoted and taught by George F. (F?) Allen, Spencer Roane, and their SECO colleagues. An MHI affiliated member attorney has told MHProNews that given the current state of federal law, he believes that the days of so-called Lonnie Deals are over, and that all such ‘rent or lease to own’ plans are illegal, because they are ‘disguised credit transactions.’ So industry professionals should approach with skepticism those who advocate such methods.
  • Once a given state begins to target an industry, it is not uncommon for other states to follow suit. Manufactured housing post-production associations are in some cases apparently failing to advise their members of the risks involving some practices. Indeed, the Midwest Manufactured Housing Federation (MMHF), and others have to some degree promoted Allen, Roane, and SECO, when they are advocating and engaging in practices that are risky to industry professionals, and purportedly are harmful to any number of consumers, like those reported here.

While it may not seem related at first blush, the second half of the article linked below very much relates to some of the issues bulleted above.  You can access the following, or other articles below the byline and disclosures, by clicking on the linked text/image box.

 

Do Looming Shareholders Suits Against Cavco Industries Foreshadow Problems for More Manufactured Home Industry Publicly Traded Firms?

 

Hungry! But Don’t Go The Wrong Way

The vast majority of the manufactured home industry’s independents and other professionals are looking to earn money honestly.  They are often hungry for knowledge. They want authentic education.  But in many cases, they clearly do not know which way to turn.  When an association or trade group gives tacit or active support to those who teach problematic behaviors, is the association opening themselves up to possible liability?  We have legal sources that say, yes.

Furthermore, a good trade group ought to condemn any bad behavior, while offering examples of the opposite.

In practical terms, this incident and the others like it are another wake up call to the industry’s ethical independents to organize on educational, lobbying, and communications. There is an affordable housing crisis.  There are many options for selling more homes in an authentic, sustainable and legitimate ways that could lead to record sales.

That can be done by individual businesses, or by some teaming up and working in concert. To learn more, click here and scroll through the options.

 

The Legal Process Grinds Slowly

There are reasons to believe that several large industry firms are under various federal investigations.  So when an individual retailer gets arrested and charged, one should not forget that this is a reminder that larger operations could face similar legal woes in the days ahead.  See more in the related reports, below the byline and disclosures.

 

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While the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) holds their winter fund-raiser – err, the MHI Winter Meeting – in Austin, TX, welcome to the ongoing drama that is buffeting MHVille in 2019. “We Provide, You Decide.” © ## (News, analysis, and commentary.)

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NOTICE: You can get our ‘read-hot’ industry-leading emailed headline news updates, at this link here. You can join the scores who follow us on Twitter at this link. Connect on LinkedIn here.

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Related Reports:

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

 

George Allen Blasts MHI, NCC Ignoring Own, Spencer Roane, SECO, COBA7, Tom Lackey Controversies

Spencer Roane w/Southeast Community Owners (SECO), Praises Tom Lackey, Accused of Rent-to-Own Manufactured Home Sales Improprieties

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

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

Clayton Retail GM Earns Big Bucks, Insider Insights for Manufactured Housing

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

“The Illusion of Motion Versus Real-World Challenges”

Independent National Manufactured Housing Post-Production Association Takes Major Step

MHARR Releases Study Recommending Independent Collective Representation for Post-Production Sector

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Wishful Thinking vs Facts, Evidence, Reason, and Manufactured Housing

January 20th, 2019 Comments off

 

WishfulThinkingVsFactsEvidenceReasonManufacturedHousingDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

Two nights ago, Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s Office took the unusual step of publishing a denial of a mainstream media report by BuzzFeed News that had the talking heads on TV, radio, and in print astir for 24 hours.

 

Harvard law professor emeritus, Alan Dershowitz – a Democrat and civil libertarian – once more explained Friday night on Sean Hannity’s show why these fake news accounts are grounded in nothing of substance.  It goes back to the need for discernment.  That’s a point which independent, award-winning journalist Sharyl Attkisson has preached and is reported on at the link here.

 

MediaBiasChartSharylAttkissonLeftRightPostedDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

Full Measure’s Sharyl Attiksson’s media bias chart is useful in sorting out the agendas behind various headlines and news sources.  See a recent report and Ted Talk video, linked here.

 

That Fox video embed code with Democratic-supporter Dershowitz is not yet available.  But another one from attorney Mark Levin – who was anti-Trump for quite some time – also discusses the same issues, references Dershowitz’s comments, and is posted below. This latest episode started by BuzzFeed raise issues that have and will continue to impact the manufactured home industry, all other professions, and society at large.

 

As important as that is, it is not the focus of this commentary that tees up our Sunday Morning weekly headline news report recaps.  Manufactured housing specific reporting is our emphasis again today.

As If…Wishful Thinking and Fake News vs,

Fact, Evidence, and Reason

 

As If?

As if George F. (F?) Allen would be the best tool in the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) shed to defend the Arlington, VA based trade group – as well as some of their largest members – was laughable.  But give “F” Allen credit.  At least he tried, and did so publicly.  As weak as “F” Allen’s effort may be, it is provided in full among the reports linked below, so you can decide for yourself how effective it is at defending Clayton, Cavco, MHI, et al from the mounting evidence of scandals.

Both Allen and the BuzzFeed stoked dramas have a few thinks in common. An arguable lack of objectivity, standards, or even common sense. Both rely upon an audience that may wish or hope that what the source says is true. Both cases involve the vast difference between evidence and reason, and everything else a matter of wishful thinking or a denial of reality.

Neither Kevin Clayton, nor Tim Williams, or Warren Buffett have disputed their own words or documents that have recently been reported at this link here. No conspiracy theories, evidence, documents, and direct quotes taken in context.  The sources have been given repeated opportunities to debunk or explain away the evidence.  Silence. That’s their 5th Amendment right.

So, having “F” Allen, MHI, or certain state association surrogates attempt any red herrings or head-fakes just reveals that they have no valid explanation, which implies that the linked evidence above is compelling.

Evidence, concerns, and allegations of market manipulation aren’t just in the past. They are in the here and now, and more are planned and underway for the days ahead. MHI – and some state associations – are part of that purported collusion. They are doing so despite MHI’s own published antitrust guidelines, linked here.

It’s been about a year since Richard ‘Dick’ Jennison, MHI President and CEO, cancelled at the Louisville Show “at the last minute” his presentation on the Trojan Horse of the so-called “new class of homes” and related. Jennison apparently didn’t want to be publicly questioned by MHProNews, or by anyone else in the audience that read MHProNews, and were provided a list of questions to ask during the Q&A.

They can hide, but only for so long. Because the trend lines, truth, and evidence keep drip, drip, dripping out.

You can trust George F. (F?) Allen, or not, when he says there are no conspiracies to find. But who beside aptly named “F” Allen spoke about conspiracy? We re-published evidence from the sources in question. Let people like Allen – who continues to ducks from his own controversial practices that created negative news in the mainstream media for the industry, see the linked report on the Masthead below – use head fakes. If Allen, MHI or their surrogates had a real, logical argument, why don’t they make it? Why don’t they do so in public, at Louisville?

What are they afraid of? What are they hiding from?  Do they fear the reaction of the crowd, if they realize that they’ve been duped by people they count on to represent their interests?

 

The Evolution of these Issues

In fairness to the current power structure behind MHI, this is not a new phenomenon.  Rather, sources suggest it has arguably taken on new twists and turns.

danny-ghorbani1st-president-manufactured-housing-association-regulatory-reform-mharr-credit=journalmfdmodularhousing-posted-dailybusiness-mhpronews-

Danny Ghorbani, photo credit, the Journal.

Danny Ghorbani, a structural and civil engineer, is a former Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) Vice President and the Founding President and CEO of the Manufactured Housing Association for Regulatory Reform (MHARR).  He is a 51-year veteran of the manufactured housing industry, who has represented all aspects of the industry in Washington, D.C., including, but not limited to, manufacturers, suppliers, retailers, communities and developers, and has managed two national manufactured housing industry trade shows.  He is currently the Senior Advisor to MHARR.

Reached by MHProNews, Mr. Ghorbani stated on the record that:

From my personal experience, at any given time, the largest manufacturers tend to dominate that Association — i.e., the Manufactured Housing Institute. The same principal may well apply at the state association level.”

 

The Most Fireworks?

This upcoming event might be the most controversial Louisville Show in years.

Watch for upcoming reports and developments. Sign up for our industry leading headline news below, to make sure you don’t miss what thousands of others are keeping up with, day by day, only on MHProNews.

 

 

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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.

 

Why is the industry’s already meager recovery stalling? See that too discussed and analyzed in the various linked reports, accessed via the text/image boxes or hot links below. Remember as you scan the headlines, we don’t turn every link into a text/box.  So, check the titles all out.

Literally from the biggest to the mid-sized or ‘mom and pop’ operations flock here to get the news and analysis no one else in MHTrade media has the guts to cover. That’s why friends, foes, and all others are on our site by the thousands, daily.  Meanwhile the manifestly pro-MHI, pro-Berkshire propaganda and related fluff go unread.

 

MHInsiderManufacturedHousingINdustryDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

George F (F?) Allen is one of the contributors to the MHInsider. Really? The photo above is from the last day of the Tunica Show, and the other racks looked the same.  Competition is healthy, because it allows people to compare. We might expect the MHVillage sponsored MHInsider – after the above and similar embarrassments at the Louisville Show last year – might learn their lesson, and pick up some of their own magazines, or perhaps pay some people to pick them up for them.

 

See why we are #1.  Share what you read here with others, because that is among the ways that this pro-growth platform – which is fighting for honest independents and professionals like you – is growing.

 

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To report a news tip, click the image above or send an email to iReportMHNewsTips@mhmsm.com – To help us spot your message in our volume of email, please put the words NEWS TIP in the subject line.

 

With no further adieu, here are the recent reports, plus the headlines for the week that was, January 13-20th, 2019.

 

New January 2019 Featured Reports and Commentary

New January 2019 Featured Articles, including a report from Sharyl Attkisson, is linked here.

 

 

What’s New on MHLivingNews

mhlivingnews-improvedlivingforle-logo

Ed Speraw, Manufactured Home Owner “Hero”, dies at 81

 

Ed Speraw, Manufactured Home Owner “Hero”, dies at 81

 

 

 

What’s New on the Masthead

TheMastheadCommentaryLATonyKovachMHProNews

 

 

The Latest from Washington, D.C. from MHARR

 

Independent National Manufactured Housing Post-Production Association Takes Major Step

 

 

 

What’s New on the Daily Business News On MHProNews

11DailyBusinessNewsMHProNewsLogos

 

Saturday 1.18.2018

Pink Flamingoes, The Virgin Mary of Guadalupe, and Manufactured Home Community’s Mainstream Media Controversy

 

Friday 1.17.2019

 

Manufactured Home Industry Groups Fighting Hard, Meanwhile, a Man Died

Insider Trades, New Cavco Industries Investigation, Selling – Plus More Manufactured Housing Stock Updates

 

Current & Forecast Investing Habits of Millennials, $30 Trillion Dollar Transfer of Wealth Looms

 

Thursday 1.16.2019

 

 

Global War On Cash? Plus, Manufactured Housing Equities Updates

Sobering Federal Report on Manufactured Housing Lending – Retailers, Communities, Producers, and Finance Companies – Take Note

An “Ideological Echo Chamber” – and Manufactured Housing Progress

 

Wednesday 1.15.2019

 

White House Thanks CNN’s Acosta, Plus Manufactured Housing Market Updates

 

New NAMHCO Association Challenges Manufactured Housing Institute on DTS, Financing, and More

No Kings in America? – John Sherman ‘Speaks’ to Manufactured Housing

 

Tuesday 1.14.2019

 

 

Clayton Homes’ Vanderbilt Mortgage and Finance Customer Experience Video, What It Says, What Does It Mean for Manufactured Housing Pros?

 

The Lighter Side of Manufactured Home Marketing?

Teen “Sex Slave” in “Mobile Home Park” – Kid Lured by Gaming App, per ABC, State Officials

 

Monday 1.13.2019

Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway, Clayton Homes, 21st Mortgage Corp and their “Strategic Moat,” Plus Manufactured Housing Equities Updates

The Future of Retail, Disney, ‘Trailer Trauma,’ and Manufactured Housing

Why Is Manufactured Housing Struggling During an Affordable Housing Crisis? Former MHI President, VP, Other’s Quotable Insights

State AG Files Suit Against, Manufactured Home Community, Rent to Own, Lease Purchase Option Warning

 

Sunday 1.12.2019

 

Exploring Corporate, Association, Individual, Investor, and Governmental Corruption Involving Manufactured Housing

 

Our publisher recently stated the obvious, which brings clarity. We are not mainstream media.  We do things differently.  We do what we do here, plus business development services for industry professionals and investors, so we stay BUSY.

YouMHProNewsSeemToHaveConceptualIQThatIsMoreImportantThanSpellingAbilityQuote

Many of our sources – and quotes – are from MHI insiders.

Or as the old Arby’s commercial used to say, “different is good.”  We’re not seeking a Pulitzer prize. Our goal is to identify the root causes of the manufactured and modular home industry’s malaise, and foster honest, ethical growth once again.

UltimateManufacturedHousingInstituteLogoQuotes1DailyBusinessNewsMHproNewsMachievelianInstiutte

That difference – the quality of the content – has kept us going, even after years of efforts by the Omaha-Knoxville-Arlington axis to try to sideline or destroy us.  That speaks volumes, doesn’t it?

That’s more than enough from the best stocked serving line in all of MHVille of relevant Industry News, Tips, and Views Pros Can Use,” © where “We Provide, You Decide.” © ## (News, commentary, and analysis.)

(See Related Reports, further below. Text/image boxes often are hot-linked to other reports that can be access by clicking on them. Third-party images and content are provided under fair use guidelines.)

 

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NOTICE: You can get our ‘read-hot’ industry-leading emailed headline news updates, at this link here. You can join the scores who follow us on Twitter at this link. Connect on LinkedIn here.

NOTICE 2: Readers have periodically reported that they are getting a better experience when reading MHProNews on the Microsoft Edge, or Apple Safari browser than with Google’s Chrome browser. Chrome reportedly manipulates the content of a page more than the other two.

(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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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 References:

The text/image boxes below are linked to other reports, which an be accessed by clicking on them.

New Association Weighs In, Giving Credit Where It’s Due, Opportunitie$, But Winds of Change Challenge Manufactured Housing’s Future

 

Bridging Gap$, Affordable Housing Solution Yields Higher Pay, More Wealth, But Corrupt, Rigged Billionaire’s Moat is Barrier

 

Manufactured Housing Institute Housing Alert, Affordable Housing Crisis, MHI’s #NettlesomeThings Response

Giving Thanks for Manufactured Housing Independents, Applauding “MHIdea!”

November 22nd, 2018 Comments off

 

GivingThanksForManufacturedHousingIndependentsAppluadingMHIdea

Disclosure.  This “MHIdea” is not about MHProNews, and predates topics and positions we’ve published in the last few years. So this Daily Business News report is just that – an article that quotes from a manufactured home industry trade group that industry legend Dick Moore conceived, and was advanced with the work of the President of Dick Moore Housing, Bob Crawford.

 

DickMooreHousingBobCrawfordDickMooreDailyBusinessNEwsMHProNews

 

The purpose for the trade “alliance” Moore and Crawford inspired was to represent manufactured home retail independents.  It was articulated in several quotes we’ve pulled from their MHIdea website. The logo at the featured image at the top of this article, and that home shown, are from their website, but the headline is ours.

FYI – they don’t even know that this article is being written.

With that introduction, let’s begin with the following quote. As we often do, the bold and brown is added to directly quoted text, which was originally in black, save for the blue and red they used in MHIdea.

— from MHIdea website, with our commentary —

“IF we keep doing what we’ve been doing,

  We will keep getting what we got!”

Or this quote: 

We must come together as an industry fighting for its very existence,

and we must do so very soon, or we may not be able to

change our current direction and momentum.” 

And consider this quote:

MHIdea was initially conceived as a trade organization for independent retail dealers.  Multi-billion dollar manufactured housing corporations have definite advantages not available to many independent manufacturers and retailers, and MHIdea was seen as, and remains to be, an excellent opportunity for these independents to enjoy some of those benefits

However, the developments of the recent months have shown the desperate need of an industry voice that can bring our united message to the consumer and to our legislating agenciesMHIdea can provide the conduit for that message.

Many of the issues we face today arose from the world of shadows that has been the recent inner-workings of HUD.  A strong, national Alliance such as MHIdea could shine the light of truth onto the inequitable dealings of HUD and provide the check and balance so sorely missing in the DC arena.” 

Was the Dick Moore and Bob Crawford inspired MHIdea ahead of its time?

Before diving deeper, let’s post a video interview of Dick Moore, below. It reveals his significant success, and fascinating historic insights.

 

 

With that better understanding of Moore as a backdrop, backdrop, consider the following quote from their dated site.

MHIdea has a multi-pronged plan of action:

 

Investigate HUD’s policies and actions of HUD personnel

for Legal Compliance and the legal options available

to us if non-compliance is found;

 

Defend the position of the independent street retail

sales center owner, before Congress and local govt’s;

 

Educate the consumer about the benefits of modern-day MH living;

 

Advocate the interests of Alliance members & the MH Industry.

 

A coordinated plan of action for our industry

is critically important to our future.

Then there is this quote:

The manufactured housing industry faces many challenges in the coming years.  But with great challenges come great opportunities, and MHIDEA is here to help independent dealers across American enjoy them more!

This quote is humble, but wise.

Whether the voice is MHIdea or some other is immaterial.

The need for such a voice is undeniable!

 

Because…

“IF we keep doing what we’ve been doing,

          We will keep getting what we got!”

 

There may be a fact glitch here and there on the MHIdea website. But the thrust of the thought process appears sound. For example. 

“…The challenge concerning retail financing is further aggravated by HUD and other agencies working against the best interests of both the consumer base which could benefit from our product and industry members themselves, from the manufacturers and parts suppliers to the retail sales personnel.  The lack of help coming from Washington, DC is glaring, with HUD boldly operating in violation of its federal mandate…” i.e: the Manufactured Housing Improvement Act of 2000.   ICYMI, or want a refresher later, the next link is from MHProNews, and not from MHIdea

Two Great Laws Already on the Books NOW,  Can Unlock Billion$ Annually for Manufactured Housing Industry Businesse$, Investor$

Before returning to items from MHIdea, it must be noted that recent data reflects that about 1/3 of manufactured homes are going into land-lease communities. The other 2/3 are predominantly being sold by retailers, although FEMA orders and some going to developers are a periodic part of the mix.  Rephrased, retailers are still the bulk of new HUD code manufactured home sales.

Vertically integrated companies, such as Clayton Homes, and to a lesser extent, Skyline-Champion and Cavco Industries, are among those who sell to independents, but also have their own retail operations.

Other semi-vertical integrated firms exist, for example, Legacy Housing,  or American HomeStar. Legacy sells to independents and communities, but also has its own retail centers.

That said, let’s return to content from MHIdea, because this next quote speaks volumes.

“…One body has become overloaded with members representing factions of our industry that are financiallybetter poised to weather the regulatory storms on the horizon, almost to the point of a technical monopoly.  MHI [i.e.: Manufactured Housing Institute] has no real incentive and apparently not much interest to work hard for the small independent retailer sales centers.  Some of their recent efforts appear to be motivated by industry members’ frustration at their previous inactions.”  That wasn’t written by MHProNews, or Marty Lavin, or Frank Rolfe.  That’s the view from a pair who have a retail operation, and only recently sold their communities, which accounted for over 25,000 mobile and manufactured homes sold over the years. 

Put differently, Dick Moore’s and Bob Crawford’s perspective is not to be taken lightly. 

Their commentary continues: “Our other representative group, MHARR, is Danny Ghorbani.   His writings have been steadfastly on the side of the retailers, but too often he has been the lone voice in the wilderness...”

When an observation has merit, it is often timeless. Note that this was done circa 2009/2010.

ManufacturedHomeMHShipments1990-2017DailybusinessNewsManufacturedHousingMHProNews

 With the above graphic and shipment levels in mind, let’s cite another quote from MHIdea:

The dismal report of total shipments in 2009, the continued lack of substantive progress from the recent MHI meeting, the continued depressed condition of the economy and its effect on our customer base all weigh heavily on the future of our business.   Our needs have NOT been adequately represented before Congress or the various federal regulatory agencies we are forced to deal with; our product has NOT been successfully marketed to our customer base in a time when our product is ideally suited to provide a much-needed commodity; our industry has NOT had a voice to speak with an unbiased voice for the benefit of ALL.  

MHIdea can provide that voice.  MHIdea personnel will be autonomous from any manufacturer or retailer associate.  We will speak for the benefit of the Alliance, with no favoritism to any one.  We will speak nationally through the Internet, video and other media productions.  We can provide a unique marketing logo supported with national advertising and PR efforts, to help our local retailer associate member’s improve their market recognition.”

MHProNews did provide at that time some coverage for their effortBut in candor, we didn’t see then all that we do now.

MHIdea had a solid concept. It could have used some refinement. It needed to have what we said yesterday about the #NobleNotMobile concept.  Namely, it will have to be given ongoing, sustained support and commitment.

#NobleNotMobile, New Contest and Video Program Launched, Exclusive Details

Over two years ago, Bob Crawford, speaking off the cuff at Tunica, once more addressed the industry’s needs. He mentioned the MHIdea in the video posted below the photo.  If you listen to what Frank Rolfe and Bob Crawford had to say, and none of this was rehearsed or planned, its amazingly insightful – even today.

 BobCrawfordDickMooreHousingFrankRofleRVHorizonsMobileHomeUniversityTunicaShowManufacturedHousingIndustryMHProNews

Several community owners have come to a similar conclusion that Dick Moore and Bob Crawford did, over 8 years ago. One might question this or that, but isn’t the concept worth highlighting?  One more time, let’s quote from their now dated website, but that they correctly kept online.

 

IF we keep doing what we’ve been doing,

           We will keep getting what we got”

 

Today, let’s give thanks for all of the independents in the manufactured home industry. In the days ahead, we can reflect beyond thanks towards positive action. 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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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:

Giving Thanks for Mobile Homes, Manufactured Homes, Classic “Mobile Home Parks” and Manufactured Home Communities

 

Legacy Housing IPO, Lending Tree, & New HUD Ruling Updates

 

#NobleNotMobile, New Contest and Video Program Launched, Exclusive Details

What’s the Truth About Thanksgiving in MHVille?

 

 

Spencer Roane w/Southeast Community Owners (SECO), Praises Tom Lackey, Accused of Rent-to-Own Manufactured Home Sales Improprieties

May 15th, 2018 Comments off

StoneyPointeMobileHomeParkManufacturedHousingCommunityDailyBuisnessNewsMHProNews

 We bought a trailer [1] that wasn’t really ours. I mean, it really hurt me.
My nerves have been tore up. I’ve been crying
.”

Tonya Evans, a customer of Tom Lackey’s Stoney Pointe MH Community business.

  

Spencer Roane is an RV MH Hall of Fame Inductee, and is one of a group of manufactured home land-lease community owners who has organized the Southeast Community Owners (SECO) symposium. 

Among the features of the annual SECO gathering? 

Talks by Roane on a controversial use of a lease-to-own (rent-to-own) program that he has previously said can be used to “finance” the sale of manufactured homes.

Roane was asked by the Daily Business News about Tom Lackey, who stands accused of ‘selling’ pre-owned manufactured homes rent-to-own. More on Roane’s reaction and comments to the troubling accusations, later below.

But first, what exactly is creating such a troubling mainstream media stir? 

TonyaEvansLost16000InvestedInHomeSheSaysPurchasedfromTomLackeyStoneyPointeMobileHomeParkManufacturedHousingIndustryNewsMHProNEws

1) Terminology used is in the original, and isn’t the legally correct term. The homes in this sad story appear to be HUD Code manufactured homes, based upon photos, perhaps dating to the 1980s or 1990s.

StoneyPointeMHPMapNearChatanoogaTNManufacturedHousingIndustryDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

 

Charges of “Selling” Homes “Rent to Own,” Without Titles

According to accusations reported by the Chattanooga Times Free Press, Lackey and his business did not own the homes that he “sold” rent-to-own.

18 residents learned their homes would be auctioned off for back taxes.

Tonya Evans and her family had a jolt when “…about five weeks ago, county workers showed up and taped a yellow seizure notice to their house. They did the same with 17 other mobiles homes [1]  at Stoney Pointe and Blue Ridge Estates, located around the block on Schmitt Road. Nobody had paid property taxes for years,” per Times Free Press staff writer Tyler Jett.

Lackey reportedly did not return calls and messages from the Times Free Press.

Nor did Tom Lackey reply to a number of direct and indirect queries from the Daily Business News, that invited him to share his version of the highly-emotionally – and legally charged – allegations.  But oblique comments about Lackey were offered by a colleague, Spencer Roane.

 

Spencer Roane’s Comments on Tom Lackey

SpencerRoanePentagonPropertiesCreditsPostedDailyBusinessNewsResearchDataReportsMHProNews

A SECO attendee who said they’re aware of the dynamics involved in this matter told MHProNews that ‘Spencer Roane has gone out of his way to protect Tom Lackey.’ 

Tom has been a member of our SECO planning group for several years. I couldn’t ask for a more professional, conscientious, or capable member of our team,” Roane said in a message to the Daily Business News.

Roane was asked about Lackey.  Roane was also asked about their often publicized to industry members ‘rent to own’ or ‘lease purchase option’ process.

I am somewhat familiar w/this situation [i.e; Lackey/Stoney Pointe] but am not comfortable commenting on it, except to say that lease-option contracts are [a] complicated, legally enforceable means of transferring ownership of MHs in some states,” Roane said.  

Roane added, “I’ve bcc’ed Tom on this msg. He will contact you if he wants to discuss it.” 

The SECO website shows Lackey on their planning team.

TomLackeySECOSoutheasternCommunityOwnersSymposiumManufacturedHousingIndustryDailyBusinessNewsMHproNews

Editorially, MHProNews believes that the majority of the industry’s professionals are honorable people. Every industry or profession has so-called ‘bad actors.’ Manufactured housing is no exception. But unlike many other industries, manufactured housing is routinely portrayed in a negative fashion in media reports. When allegations are false, they should be disputed. When allegations are true, ignoring them doesn’t help the industry, its home owners and leaves a problematic impression for potential buyers. An industry that policies itself may more often avoid such problems, and thus could avoid onerous legislation or regulations that can result from the ‘bad actions’ of a few. About the case of Tom Lackey and Stoney Pointe, all that is known at this time is as shown and linked. Lackey would not accept the Daily Business News’ offer to have him and/or his attorney explain their version of the events described in the Times Free Press.  To learn more about our view of the industry, its professional and overall happy home owners, click the related report below.” We Provide, You Decide.” ©

Happy MH Owners? Good Professional Actors? Overlooked, “Honorable People”

Apparently, Lackey did not want to explain his view on what took place with Tonya Evans, her family, and 17 other households that live in his community. Should he and/or his attorney offer a comment, we can update this report.

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George Allen, photo credit, MHProNews.com.

Blogger, COBA7 owner, and RV MH Hall of Famer retired Col. George Allen – who has been played a role in the SECO program – declined comment on the troubling story.   

I’m somewhat familiar with the matter. No comment from here,”  Allen said to the Daily Business News via email.  

As Allen’s COBA7 followers and others know, Allen has promoted Roane’s rent-to-own program and SECO for several years.  

 

What Local Authorities Said

Dealer rules and regulations are very clear,” said Danny Sane, the tax commissioner of Whitfield County. “You’re not supposed to be able to sell a car or a mobile home without the title in your name.”

Sane called the bill of sale ‘worthless,’ per the Times Free Press.

Walker County Tax Commissioner Carolyn Walker said, Mr. Lackey must go through the proper proceedings before he can legally rent, or sell the mobile home [1],” Walker said in an email to the Times Free Press. Their report indicated that Lackey never obtained those titles to the manufactured homes they were ‘selling’ when he purchased the community in 2014.

 

Evans Paid Cash 

While most of Lackey’s customers were presumably ‘buying’ rent-to-own, Evans and her husband reportedly paid cash for their home.

Now, they’ve packed up and moved on, saying they had been defeated. 

What impact, if any, this has on Stoney Pointe, Lackey, SECO, COBA7 attendees and their followers is not easy to predict.  But some consequences wouldn’t be surprising.  And what will those various residents who thought they would become owners do?

The Times Free Press has signaled that this is going to be an ongoing investigation by their publication.

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Will the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) step in and comment on this troubling case? On rent-to-own a.k.a. ‘lease purchase option’ so-called ‘sales’?

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A source familiar with the matter from Georgia had this off-the-record comment, “…this is common among Community Owner’s because states don’t have appropriate abandoned housing laws, these guys buy a community and can’t move a home because it has ten years back taxes to pay for because customer died 8 years ago and family want moved the home. Doesn’t mean it’s right though. Georgia has a new Abandoned housing law that goes in effect July 1st that will help avoid this in the future.”

In the era of Google and internet-driven news searches, this is likely to be an ongoing image issue for many other community operators, and arguably the industry at large.  

It is part of what MHI award-winner Marty Lavin, JD,  has called tongue-in-cheek the industry’s “other image campaign.”

Lavin was travelling, and was not able to comment on the specific concerns in this case.  But he has previously noted the principles that people should pay more attention to what people do than what they say, and to follow the money.

  • Will the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) weigh in on the troubling issue?
  • Will MHI defend the reputation of those who strive day-by-day to serve their customers properly? 
  • Will Lackey respond to our numerous attempts to get him to comment on his version of these incidents? 
  • The Chattanooga Times Free Press news report is linked here. ## (News, analysis, and commentary)

(Third-party images and content are provided under fair use guidelines.) 

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[1] The terminology shown is in the original, and isn’t the proper legal name for the kind of home being described. To learn more about terminology and general industry facts, click here. MHProNews encourages mainstream media, and all others too, to use the proper terminology for each type of home. 

Update, on the record comments from GMHA (5.15.2018 at 11:43 AM ET):

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

We [GMHA] recognized the state had an issue and so we utilized the legislative process to rectify the problem. We know this [new] law is sound. We used the Alabama law for precedence and invited the states magistrate judges, tax commissioners, and bankers to the table. We worked together for two years until we had 100% agreement,” said Jay Hamilton, Georgia Manufactured Housing Association (GMHA) to MHProNews.

The Daily Business News pressed the GMHA, in a follow up, about Tom Lackey, Stoney Pointe, and the details of this specific matter.  In their follow up reply, Hamilton said via a text message the following.

The GMHA can’t comment on the specifics of such matters,” the GMHA executive director said.

But in general, when a potentially problematic issue exists with a member, there is a code of conduct and process the GMHA follows.”

The association is always focused on resolving underlying issues, and doing so in a manner that respects consumers and members alike,” Hamilton said to MHProNews.

Related Reports:

Governor Signs new “Mobile Home” Act

NPR’s Syringa Mobile Home Park Story, Revisited by Community Owner

 

Community Co-Owner/Manager View On Richard Jennison and the Manufactured Housing Institute StatePoint Advertorial

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Soheyla is a managing member of LifeStyle Factory Homes, LLC, the parent company to MHProNews, and MHLivingNews.com.

 

George Allen Fact Check: 6 Errors/Contradictions in one section alone (290/1)?

April 1st, 2014 Comments off

Caesar-Palace-main-fountain-at-night-in-Las Vegas-NV-WikiCommons-posted-on-mhpronews-comThe Washington Post famously hands out “Pinocchios” for false or misleading statements made by public officials they fact check, including notables such as U.S. President Barack Obama, Russian President Vladimir Putin and other foreign or domestic public figures.

Since the MHIndustry’s George F. Allen boldly proclaims himself weekly to be a “reporter” and “communications resource,” let’s see in just one of the three parts (not counting his standard introduction, or “end notes”) in his recent post how many errors or contradictions this alleged “reporter” makes.

1) The first error/contradiction is found in the very first sentence in George F. Allen’s blog post (#290, section I); which is a typo of one of his own publication’s name.

2) When George Allen wrote;

“…NEVER EVER ENGAGE IN PUBLIC BACKSTABBING of MHBusiness associates online or anywhere else!”

…does Allen realize he violated that principle in that very paragraph, in his own blasting of the Manufactured Housing Institute’s (MHI’s) popular Congress and Expo? Is it ‘Do as I say, not as I do?’ for Allen in Indy? Does Allen hold himself and his friends to this standard, or not?

3) The early bird special for Congress and Expo runs through Friday, April 4, so Allen has 2 fact errors in his second bullet point, and once more violates his own stated principle of “…NEVER EVER ENGAGE IN PUBLIC BACKSTABBING of MHBusiness associates online or anywhere else!” As a side note, when has MHI ever attacked Allen’s so-called Roundtable or other “meetings” publicly?

4) Allen’s paragraph five states registrations for MHI’s Congress and Expo in 2014 “…are up 30 percent over last year!” An MHProNews source at MHI puts that at up 39% increase over last year, as of 3PM ET, 3/31/2014. Doesn’t that fact-error contradict his bullet point 3, which boldly claims his location has become “the hub…” “…of 1) research, 2) resources, 3) communication, 4) networking, 5) deal-making, 6) PM training & certification, and when need be, 7) national advocacy…” What Allen himself has said in a prior blog post, that he agitatesagainst MHI seems accurate. If MHProNews grades errors and contradictions on the curve, that would be a sixth fact/contradiction error. But if you look at the fact that accurate research, business building resources, more (…and more accurate…) communications, some 5 times more networking at the Congress and Expo event alone, true testing and certification through MHEI’s ACM (Accredited Community Manager), those first 6 claims are all errors/contradicted, because he is clearly not “…the hub…” based solely on Allen’s own missive. As to Allen point 7), when has Allen last engaged in “national advocacy” on an issue with Congress, the CFPB, HUD or other Washington based regulatory agency? Should that self-proclaimed “reporter” get a total 6 or 13 fact errors/contradictions for that one section of his blog? Does the Scripture-quoting Allen recall Exodus 20:16?

With so many obvious errors in just section “I” of a single Allen post – a pattern of errors which allegedly occurs routinely with this self-described “reporter” and “community-investor” – is it any wonder that the New York Times has not called George Allen to have a reporter spend a week in his “land lease life style community?”

For those wishing to learn the facts about the MHI/NCC 2014 Congress & Expo to be held on April 29 – May 1, 2014 at Caesars Palace in Las Vegas – or to save $200 on early bird special for the hottest ticket in the manufactured housing industry ‘business building, educational, networking and deal making’ with an estimated 1000 +/- attendees from companies of all sizes – please click here by Friday April 4 for the discounted rates.

MHI organizers say similar events in the home building or real estate industry often cost more, and tell us they have arranged for discounted room rates ‘while they last,’ but MHProNews – which will have a paying attendee of the event – encourages readers to check out the facts for yourself. ##

(Image credit of Caesar’s Palace main fountain at night in Las Vegas, NV: WikiCommons. Editor’s note: by way of disclosure, MHProNews’ parent company was hired by MHI to help promote this event, but we were not asked to comment or fact-check this George Allen article.)

Cheers and Jeers; Allen and Ghorbani

January 15th, 2013 Comments off

Two new Industry in Focus reports drew cheers from numerous industry business and association leaders from coast to coast. Sources close to George F. Allen and Danny Ghorbani whispered they met the reports with jeers – and in concert with their close knit group of cross-promoters – are already discussing potential response tactics. Ken Rishel provide a spirited defense of Allen, his ally, in a one page article in an emailed document. But A Manufactured Controversy? shredded Rishel’s defense, including by quoting Allen himself as indicating he is starting a ‘new association’ because he can’t sell his business interests to prepare for his desired retirement.

Danny Ghorbani, president of MHARR, allegedly attempted to divert attention by issuing a statement on a different topic. A source in the MHARR camp informed MHProNews about a division in their association. One faction favors working more closely with the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI), while another backs Ghorbani out of a sense of loyalty for a man willing to fight for what the HUD Code ought to give our Industry by law.

A source told MHProNews that the challenge is that Ghorbani, while smart and talented, is a bridge burner. That source and others have said they have personally watched Danny as an “equal opportunity” attacker of U.S. Senators, Congressmen, regulators and/or their respective staffs when he doesn’t get his way. “They (public officials) simply don’t want to talk to him.” the source told us. “That makes it hard for Ghorbani to be an effective association leader.” Another said, “MHARR’s factories could save 6 figures a year and quadruple their policy impact overnight. When will they figure that out?” The report on threats made by Ghorbani is in Industry In Focus, linked here.

“The phones lit up Monday morning and our email brought numerous kudos messages,” said MHProNews publisher L. A. ‘Tony’ Kovach. “There was one light defense of Ghorbani and one of Allen. But most of our readers feedback agreed, with some congently pointing out that the industry has only advanced its agenda in DC when MHI, MHARR and MHEC (Manufactured Housing Executives Committee) all worked together.”

“There is no doubt that Ghorbani and Allen have small pockets of support.” Kovach said. “But as our Masthead’s blog, Bring it On! analysis demonstrates, their own supporters are arguably among the most harmed by the divisive actions of these two ‘anti-leaders.’ They are similar in the sense (that) they both attack MHI, but they never stop to think that the lack of unity, which their published negative missives foment, harm everyone.”

“Logically, that includes their own constituencies of Allen’s ‘small communities,’ and MHARR’s independent manufacturer.” Kovach added.

A Manufactured Controversy? quotes MHI CEO Dick Jennison and includes downloadable documents. MHI declined comment on the Ghorbani threats article. “MHI routinely keeps it positive or silent about MHARR publicly, depending on how MHARR’s president behaves.” Kovach observed. Links to each of the stories and the related downloadable documents are found in red above. ##

(Photo: George F. Allen (l), Danny Ghorbani (r))