Posts Tagged ‘homeless’

What Americans May Learn from Brits – Prefab and Modular Housing in London, Major Cities

August 25th, 2017 Comments off

Featured image credit, We Love Ad, MHProNews.

I’ve always believed there must be a way to get better quality and build quicker,” says Tom Bloxham, chief executive of Urban Splash.

The need for more affordable housing in London has been more apparent since the Grenfell Tower fire, according to City Metric.

That globally publicized fire tragedy caused at least 80 deaths, 70 injuries, and destroyed 129 flats, per the BBC.

All of those flats were ‘socially-rented units,’ leaving the survivors of the fire displaced, or homeless.

Now they’re hoping to find homes they can afford, but also around the same area for work or community reasons.

Besides those displace by the tower fire, London has about 7,000 socially rented units.  But there are still 1,800 homeless in that area, per City Metric.

As matters stand, it could take 2-3 years to create more affordable housing units.

That spells opportunities for U.K.’s modular and prefab builders.

Growing Acceptance for Modular and Prefab Housing for the U.K.

One example of this is Legal & General (L&G) Homes, an arm of the conglomerate which now has a modular housing factory just outside of Leeds.

At full production, homes like this will be delivered repeatedly in a matter of weeks without the snagging issues faced by traditional methods,” said Nigel Wilson, the chief executive of L&G. “Just as the car industry was automated, so the UK’s traditional housebuilding sector now needs to step up. We need to build houses faster and more efficiently than ever before.”


Nigel Wilson, chief executive of L&G.   Image credit, the Daily Mail.

In fact, the first prefabricated home from L&G, purchased by RHP, was placed on site in Richmond. It only took a few short hours to be fully installed, per The Guardian.

The homes will have

  • luxury kitchens,
  • lounges,
  • a bedroom, bathroom,
  • underfloor heating
  • and solar panels which are expected to reduce electricity costs to £10 a year.

These units will likely rent for £600 to £700 a month.

The only real problem? At 26 SQ meters, about 280 square feet, the homes are very small.

So small in fact that they don’t meet the national space requirements of 36 SQ M for a one-bedroom unit.

The RHP homes are tiny-homes by definition.

They [space standards] have made a real difference to the quality of development in London. I’m confident that space standards are right and will continue to be right,” said Jennifer Peters, in charge of the London Plan at the Greater London Authority.


Will Wimhust of RHP. Image credits, WimhustPelleriti.

In response Will Wimshurst of Wimshurst Pelleriti, which designed the L&G home for RHP, said: “We’re not saying we’re against space standards. What we are saying is that there is a big problem in the middle of the market – companies just can’t hold on to workers in places such as London. These people are forced to leave, and they need a solution.”

Another builder in the U.K. who sees the benefits of prefabricated homes is Urban Splash. The company, as the Daily Business News has previously reported, has already sold 43 modular homes in New Inslington, Manchester.

Understanding the Benefits of Prefabricated Housing

What U.S. industry professionals know, much of the public still needs to discover.  A recent report by Systemiq and the Ellen MacArthur Foundation highlighted sustainability gains made through the use of prefabricated housing.

The report found that prefab homes are more energy efficient. This is likely because production line precision ensures that the homes are “extraordinarily” airtight.


Nick Frankland. Image credit, Financial Digest.

“[It] is quite a sexy product,” says Nick Frankland, L&G Homes chief executive. “We are building precision-built homes that are millimetre accurate, that work differently in regards to heat loss, airtightness. We’re trying to push what you’re able to deliver, and we believe this can be a contributor to the housing supply gap in the U.K.

The Grenfell Tower fires brought attention to poorly maintained, socially rented housing. Much like most of the affordable housing that is currently available.

The housing crisis is only going to get worse – the need for both safe and affordable housing as a whole is clear.

The housing crisis is about production capacity, and innovation is the most important piece in solving this,” says author of the Systemiq report Mark Farmer.

The Centre for London is looking into removing limitations on issues like space requirements, warranties and insurance, which are hurdles surrounding prefabricated and modular housing, per City Metric.

Frankly, if we don’t do it quickly then foreign firms will pour in and we’ll have lost our domestic industry,” Andy Dix, chairman of trade body Build Offsite says. ## (News.)

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

JuliaGranowiczManufacturedHomeLivingNewsMHProNews-comSubmitted by Julia Granowicz to the Daily Business News for MHProNews.


Hawaiian Modular Housing Advances

July 20th, 2017 Comments off

HawiianModularHousingProjectBeginsCreditHPR-DailyBusinessNewsManufacturedModularHomeNewsResearchReportsMHProNewsKahau’iki Village is shaping up as all-too-rare collaboration of state, county and private sector parties coming together to provide affordable housing for those in the community who are struggling.

It’s a dream come true, hopefully, for those who maybe felt powerless and disenfranchised.  We want children to see a brighter future for themselves and to live with dignity,” said Duane Kurisu, founder of non-profit aio Foundation.

After two years in the works Kahau’iki Village in Honolulu, Hawaii is finally ready to break ground and hopefully have their first affordable modular homes available to families and individuals in need by the end of the year, per Hawaii Public Radio.


Duane Kurisu, credit, Business Journal.

We took the land from the state through an executive order and then we leased it to aio Foundation at a dollar a year.  And then we contributed $3.6 million in terms of infrastructure improvement, sewer lines, water lines.  And we put it in for them.  And we’re ready to do even more can do more to make sure this is a complete and absolute success,” said Kurisu.


Plot of modular project, credit, Business Journal.

The 13-acre plot of land between Ke’ehi Lagoon Park and Sand Island will soon be home for many families who are trying to find an affordable place to live after transitional shelters. With the growing number of homeless in the area this solution was needed.


Credit, Facebook.

We are looking for families who are motivated.  Who are working.  We are looking right now for the ones with younger children, you know, more so.  But anybody who’s very motivated.  We want them to have a chance,” said Connie Mitchell, executive director of the Institute for Human Services.


The modular units are being reused and are the same ones that previously housed victims of the 2011 tsunami in Japan. Once they are placed in Kahau’iki Village they will become permanent one- and two-bedroom plantation style homes that are expected to rent for $725 a month for one a bedroom and $900 a month for a two bedroom – including all utilities and a Wi-Fi connection.

We want children to see a brighter future for themselves and to live with dignity.”

The first 30 units should be ready for move-in by the end of the year, if all goes well. Their goal is to have at least 100 people living in Kahau’iki Village by the middle of 2018, according to Hawaii News Now.

Eventually, the village will be able to house around 800 people or more, which will include both individuals and families in need.

This is a great example of a community coming together to help those who need it most – and doing so in the way that would be most affordable to those who will benefit from it.


Honolulu Mayor Kirk Caldwell added, “We’re hoping, as this moves forward, we’ll learn from it and then we’ll look to duplicate it in other parts of our community.”

As long-time, regular readers of Daily Business News know, this is not the first time that Hawaiians and the city of Honolulu specifically has turned to factory built housing to solve the homelessness epidemic. In 2015 we reported on a plan that brought in  25 shipping containers turned into housing. In 2016 we reported on their plans to use modular housing as well – which included 2- and 3-bedroom units that rented for $950-$1050 per month.

Kahau’iki Village the latest step in that state’s efforts to use modular housing, as they strive to ensure that there is more affordable housing available. # #

Other Factory Built Home Stories in Hawaii are Linked Below:

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

JuliaGranowiczManufacturedHomeLivingNewsMHProNews-comSubmitted by Julia Granowicz to the Daily Business News for




Sunday Morning Weekly Recap Manufactured Housing Industry News June 18 to June 25, 2017

June 25th, 2017 Comments off

The New June 2017 articles on the home page are live, with the full line up on display at this link here.

If you’ve been super busy, traveling, have been on vacation, or are new to the Daily Business News  on MHProNews, welcome to our weekly recap of the Manufactured Housing Industry’s News, Tips and Views that Pros Can Use.” ©



Let’s start with what’s New on

At Death, What do You do with a Mobile or Manufactured Home?

Highlights of What’s New on and the Daily Business News





Saturday, June 24, 2017




Rendering of unrelated modular home in San Bernardino, for illustration purposes, Credit: Express Modular

City Expanding Affordable Housing

 Friday, June 23, 2017

The Homeless are Finding Benefactors in Many Cities

Skyline Investor Move$ Spotlight; Other MH Stocks, Broader Markets Mixed



Senior Staff Shakeup at the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI)?


Are Americans Hunting for the Single Sectional Manufactured Home Alternative?

Competitive Enterprise Institute Grades Trump on Energy, Domestic Policies

 Thursday, June 22, 2017


Huge Loss to Affordable Housing Stock May Be in Offing

Residents of Green Tree Estates, l-r, Roz Bailey, Annabelle Bentley, Dianna Weys, Credit: Amy Reid-Surrey Now Leader

Investor$ Big Move$ – LPX Spotlight; Tricon, LCI lead, NOB, SKY Bleed

Free Resource for Retailers, Communities, Your Customers and Residents

Jana Kasperkevic, Tiny Houses, Manufactured Homes & Financing

USDA Celebrating National Home Ownership Month

 Wednesday, June 21, 2017


Fearful Residents Ask, “Are There Murderers Living Here?”

Modular Housing Scandal? HUD Investigating, Senator McCain Blasts, Wants Reforms

Insider Trades, UMH – Carlyle Surges, Skyline Slips

‘CFPB Rectal Exam,’ Congressman Stresses Need for Credit & Financial Reform, Manufactured Home Pros React



Is this MH Community Owner, Plus Thousands of Others, Unwittingly Waiving Rights Under Federal Law?

Tuesday, June 20, 2017


Summit Homes, Clayton Subsidiary, Donates to St Jude’s, Skyline JUMP$

Datacomp Releases Another JLT Manufactured Home Community – June 2017 Rent, Occupancy Reports, for Seven Markets



Posh, Massive New Manufactured Home Community Being Developed

War Talk Worries? How Is It Impacting Markets?

National Home Ownership Month, MSU Tornado Researcher-Mark Skidmore-Touts Manufactured Homes as “Great” Option


Monday June 19, 2017

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

Why Cavco Bought Lexington Homes, per Joe Stegmayer – CG, AMG, MHCV Up

Consolidation? Not just Manufactured Housing, Look at Banking – Similar Causes?

Starting Today, it’s Prosperity Now, CFED’s Rebranding

Michael Geller, Making a Home for Manufactured Housing, a Vision for America


Sunday Morning Weekly Recap Manufactured Housing Industry News June 11 to June 18, 2017


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

Submitted by Matthew J. Silver to Daily Business News on MHProNews

Billionaire Sees Shipping Containers as Homeless Solution

April 11th, 2017 Comments off

Homeless encampment residents watch it being destroyed in San Jose, CA. Credit: Bloomberg.

In the San Francisco Bay Area of California, housing, along with most everything else, is very expensive. In many cities in the region, this disparity creates a toxic combination: an affordable housing crunch and rampant homelessness.

A billionaire in the area believes that the solution lies in repurposing shipping containers.

According to HousingWire, Santa Clara based real estate developer John Sobrato recently unveiled a proposal to build 200 micro apartments for both homeless and low-income renters, utilizing shipping containers, turning them into units between 160 and 240 square feet with kitchenettes and bathrooms with showers.

I think it’s time to turn my attention to creating a very cost-effective solution to housing the homeless and very low-income people,” said Sobrato.


John Sabrato. Credit: Forbes.

Instead of sleeping in a pup tent or under an overpass, Santa Clara homeless folks will have a clean, dignified, safe place to call home.”

Sobrato plans to lease a 2.5-acre plot of city-owned land three miles from the San Francisco 49ers football stadium, which the city acquired in 2005 with the intention of creating affordable housing.

Funding for that plan fell through, and in October of last year Sobrato approached the city with his idea.

Per Bloomberg, Sobrato asked for a 57-year lease at the cost of $1 a year. In return, his group, the Sobrato Organization, would build and own the apartments, then lease them back to Santa Clara County, which would hire property management and homeless service providers.


The proposed area for development. Credits: Google, The Petition Site.

The project, called Innovation Place, would be projected to open in 2018, with half of the apartments being rented to the homeless, and the other half being made available to renters earning between 50 and 80 percent of the area’s median income.



While many see Sobrato’s idea as noble, there are those that disagree. An anonymous petition began to circulate shortly after Sobrato presented his plan, and has 852 supporters.

While some may disagree, the numbers show that the need for affordable housing is the state is dire: 17 ballot measures were on the ballot last November dealing with affordable housing.

The Daily Business News has covered a number of potential NIMBY (Not-In-My-Back-Yard) stories recently, where current residents appear to be working to keep manufactured homes or other affordable housing options for communities out.

Most notable is the case in Aiken, South Carolinawhere Councilman Danny Feagin was quoted as saying “As long as it keeps the mobile home parks [sic] out, I think the folks would be satisfied,” in relation to a proposed rezoning ordinance.

For more on shipping containers being used to solve the growing affordable housing crisis around the world, click here. ##


(Image credits are as shown above.)



RC Williams, for Daily Business News, MHProNews.

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

After Land Deal, Tiny Manufactured Homes to the Rescue for the Homeless

November 23rd, 2016 Comments off

Judy Huntsman presents the Brown’s a $30,000 check. Credit: The News-Leader.

Linda and David Brown are founders of The Gathering Tree, a nonprofit organization that operates an evening drop-in center for homeless people in Springfield, Missouri.

They had a vision to be able to do more. And they did.

The Gathering Tree has purchased a 4.5-acre tract of land in north Springfield to create a tiny-home community for disabled and chronically homeless people.

The new community will be called Eden Village and will eventually include 30 homes and a community center.

Linda and David Brown invited the public and media to an event on November 21st to announce the plans for Eden Village. During the event, Coldwell Banker Vanguard Realtors owner Judy Huntsman presented a check for $30,000 to pay for the first tiny, manufactured home at Eden Village.

It’s time for us to step up to the plate,” said Huntsman. “When I saw these tiny houses, I just said, ‘we have to do this.‘”

Linda Brown, also a real estate agent, has been looking for property for the tiny home community for some time. She recently found a former manufactured home community that is complete with concrete pads and utility and sewer hook-ups for the tiny factory-built homes.


A tiny home model. Credit: The News-Leader.

I took that back to the city and they gave me the thumbs up. They said, ‘OK, this is good,” said Linda Brown. “We don’t have to rezone. It’s already a mobile home park [sic]. That is what we are going to do.

The homes are 400 square feet with one bedroom, one bathroom and a kitchen.

All we have to do is roll them in and plug them in. And they are good to go,” said Brown.

There will be a shared community building with laundry facilities and a large kitchen for entertaining up to 30 guests.


Outside of The Gathering Tree, Springfield Missouri. Credit: The News-Leader.

Per the Springfield News-Leader, Eden Village will specifically house individuals who qualify as “chronically disabled homeless” by standards of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. Residents, many of whom are on disability, will pay their own rent.

The inhabitants will have dignified homes in a community infused with respect and hospitality,” a press release said. “The Gathering Tree’s Eden Village will radically transform Springfield’s approach to homelessness and provide a model that can be replicated elsewhere to help address the issues of homelessness.

We hope to have the first home on the site in early 2017,” said David Brown.

Once we have about 10 homes and the community building ready, people can begin moving in.

The Daily Business News has covered rise of “tiny homes” recently, including the city of San Jose, California, bypassing state building codes to provide homes for the homeless. ##

(Image credits are as shown above.)


RC Williams, for Daily Business News, MHProNews.

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

Big Bet to Battle Homeless and Housing Crisis: Modular Homes

October 25th, 2016 Comments off

New modular housing display. Credit: CBC.

Vancouver mayor Gregor Robertson believes that a shipping container prefabs parked on the south side of the Vancouver Art Gallery holds the key to his city’s homeless and affordable housing crisis.

Inside of the shipping container housing unit is a display model of a single suite that will be in Vancouver’s first-ever temporary modular housing complex.


Vancouver Mayor Gregor Robertson. Credit: Wikipedia.

We want people in Vancouver to experience what it’s like on the inside and understand the quality and the efficiency and appropriateness of having modular housing to address the particular challenge we have,” said Robertson.

The modular housing complex is due to open in early 2017 at 1500 Main Street, according to the CBC.


Mukhtar Latif. Credit: LinkedIn.

Temporary modular housing allows us to leverage city owned land and creates innovative partnerships to provide a greater diversity of homes with greater affordability,” said Mukhtar Latif, Vancouver’s Chief Housing Officer. Latif also shared that more temporary modular complexes could be built on vacant lots waiting to be developed.

The display unit is 250 square feet with a small bedroom/sitting area, a closet, private bathroom and a kitchen.


Inside the shipping container modular suite. Credit: CBC.

The future Main Street complex will have 40 of these units, which will be available to the homeless and those on low or fixed incomes.


Credit: Horizon North.

Calgary based firm Horizon North, which specializes in modular camp and oil field accommodations, is building the complex. ##

(Image credits are as shown above.)


RC Williams, for Daily Business News, MHProNews.

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


Emergency Manufactured Homes may Assist in Colorado Flooding

September 16th, 2013 Comments off

Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) Chief Craig Fugate met with Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper and members of the state’s congressional delegation to discuss rebuilding and housing options regarding the over 19,000 buildings and homes damaged, and 1,502 homes destroyed, by the flooding along the Front Range. In addition over 30 highway bridges have been washed out. Fugate offered a fuller analysis of the damage may not be realized for up to three weeks, but according to, FEMA will try to find rental units for those left homeless as it does during catastrophes of this type. If necessary emergency manufactured housing units will be brought in, as MHProNews has learned.

(Photo credit: John Wark/Associated Press–South Platte River near Greeley, Colorado washes out road)

Innovative Composites International has New CEO

May 29th, 2013 Comments off

MarketWire informs MHProNews the board of directors of Innovative Composites International, Inc. (ICI) has appointed Mark Rivers to serve as vice-chairman and interim CEO of the company, replacing Terry Ball, the previous CEO who has taken on the mantle of President and Chief Operating Officer (COO). ICI manufactures proprietary engineered composite products, including modular housing and shelters for those rendered homeless as the result of catastrophes. Currently a director of the company, Rivers has founded several businesses as well as helped existing companies with conflict resolution, mergers, partner buyouts and strategic alliances.

(Image credit: Innovative Composites International, Inc.)

Hurricane Sandy Homeless Still being Placed

February 5th, 2013 Comments off

According to atl.gmnews, some 17 manufactured homes are being prepared for occupancy at Pine Tree Mobile Home Park in Eatonton, New Jersey for people who still do not have a place to call home as the result of Hurricane Sandy. The rents will be from $750 to $850 with the option to buy for those who are eligible for the housing. Although the homes are not furnished, the Affordable Housing Alliance has resources that can help with household goods, as well as access to food pantries. The first three units will be ready by the end of Feb. with three units added each week, two of which will handicap accessible. The manufactured homes the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) provided are 70 feet long, which is too long for many of the communities, according to Donna Blaze, CEO of the alliance that operates Pine Tree. She says her organization continues to work with FEMA to identify communities that have available space for the estimated 3,000 to 5,000 people who are still in need of housing. As MHProNews had been informed, while 300 of the alliance’s housing units are occupied by displaced survivors, some of the organization’s housing was damaged or destroyed during the storm, so resources have been directed to repair and/or rebuild those units.

(Photo credit: thewesterlysun–aftermath of Hurricane Sandy)

NYC Housing Shortage Likely to Worsen

November 13th, 2012 Comments off

Reporting from New York City, observer says the return to normalcy in parts of the battered city, from the homes that burned to those that washed away, will be many months. Owners of one expensive high rise in lower Manhattan do not know when their units will be habitable, and are releasing tenants from their leases. The vacancy rate is one percent in the city, a little higher in the boroughs. In addition to the 40,000 homeless, there are thousands currently displaced by Hurricane Sandy, including many with limited means in the outlying areas. In addition, those still in their homes sitting in the dark with no heat as the weather gets colder will soon be looking for warmer quarters. “There’s a huge fear that folks are going to be displaced for the medium and long term,” city housing commissioner Mathew M. Wambua told The New York Times. Modular FEMA units will likely supplement apartments, MHProNews has learned, and officials want building owners to help create a clearinghouse of available units. If they accept FEMA vouchers, owners want to be indemnified by the government for damages and legal costs of evicting tenants.

(Photo credit: Country Living–modular in the city)