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Posts Tagged ‘Ignorance’

Disney Utilizes Inaccurate, Prejudicial Terminology “Trailer” Offensive to Factory-Builders, Homeowners

December 26th, 2018 Comments off

 

DisneyUtilizesInaccuratePrejudicialTerminologyTrailerOffensiveFactoryBuildersHomeownersDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

Disney Springs in Orlando, FL has been discovered openly using offensive, inaccurate terminology deemed prejudicial towards factory-builders and the over 22 million Americans in the U.S. – plus others in Canada – who live in pre-HUD Code mobile homes, modular housing, and HUD Code manufactured homes.

 

Near the Disney Springs Strawberry parking area where thousands walk by daily, the photos shown were taken on Christmas Day, 2018.

 

DisneySpringsStrawberryParkingLotModularUnitsImproperlyLabeledTrailersDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

 

It is unclear at this time how long those modular office units have been at that location.

But what is clear is that the units themselves are labeled as “modular,” which the photo shown above reflects. That modular standard is no doubt the commercial construction code the units in question were built to meet.

 

SteveDukeLMHATheTerminologyMattersBecausetheTerminologyDefinesTheConstructionStandardsDailyBusinessNewsMHProNewsMHLivingNews1

On a different, but similarly problematic nomenclature issue, Mark Weiss, JD, President and CEO of the Manufactured Housing Association for Regulatory Reform previously said as follows.

TheDeliberateMisueofTerminologyCanBeOffensivetoMillionsWhoProudlyOwnAManufacturedhomeOrThousandsinourIndustryMarkWeissMHARRMHproNews575

Likewise, manufactured housing advocate, the Rev. Donald Tye, Jr. said as follows about such troubling use of inaccurate “t-word” terminology.

 

RevDonaldTyeJr.ManufacturedHousingNotT-railerNotNword_001

The Rev. Donald Tye, Jr. and his family were raised in a factory-built home, still proudly own one, and are advocates for the proper use of industry terminology.

 

When the National Association of Realtors™ (NAR) Realtor University™ researcher Scholastica ‘Gay’ Cororaton, CBE, was contacted last summer about a problematic use of the term “mobile home” in their research documents. She not only promptly responded with a ‘thank you’ for bringing the needed correction to her attention, she had all of the errant NAR documents, graphics, and blogs changed to reflect the proper phrasing. Cororaton then went a step further, and noted Mark Weiss, JD, and MHProNews publisher L. A. ‘Tony’ Kovach in their revised report’s first footnote, as shown below.

 

ScholasticaGayCororatonCBENARRevisionsRealtorUniversityDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews598x493

Accuracy matters, and giving credit to sources matters to third-parties. The corrected research report is linked here. The Realtor University blog it was posted on is linked here.

 

MHProNews plans to contact Disney Springs’ management/public relations office about the issue later today, and will follow up this report to state what corrective measures – if any – Disney management will take as a result of this matter being brought to their attention.

 

DisneySpringsModularManufactruredHousingIndustryDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews2

 

About one in ten Floridians live in a mobile or manufactured home, with others living in modular or some other form of prefabricated housing construction,” said L. A. ‘Tony’ Kovach, co-founder and publisher of the industry’s most-read trade publication, MHProNews.

DisneySpringsModularManufactruredHousingIndustryDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

 

Potentially thousands walk by that locale daily. So the negative impact of that signage is multiplied and grows over time. But there is also the message being given to the Disney “cast,”  who may be incorrectly led to think that errant term “trailer” is an acceptable term in this case, when it clearly is not.

Terminology2HarvardFreddieMacNeighborworksManufacturedHomeDefintionMobileHomeTraileModularPanelizedDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews432

 

Hopefully, this is just an oversight by Disney, the result of ignorance rather than an intentional insult to factory-builders and those who reside in a factory-crafted dwelling,” Kovach said. “But if Disney doesn’t correct this error promptly, and make it clear to their staff – who Disney refers to as “cast members” – that the term “trailer” for the description of a housing or office units that aren’t RVs is improper, prejudicial, and offensive, then we will bring the matter to the wider attention of the tens of thousands of the industry’s professionals.  We could also draw the issue, as needed, to the attention of the millions of residents of the mobile, manufactured, and modular housing communities. If necessary, we’ll also do a follow up report on MHLivingNews, with manufactured home resident groups – and via media contacts – to others in mainstream news forums Our hope is that they’ll make a correction, and will instruct their cast about the proper use of terminology in this matter.”

 

UltimateManufacturedHomeHousingInfographicNotMobileHomeTrailerHouseFactoryBuiltHomeIndustryDailyBusienssNewsMHProNews-600

 

MHProNews will update readers on the Disney Springs controversy, just as we did on the NAR and other similar topics, as previously reported here on the Daily Business News.

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

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“Home Sweet Home” – Assistant Mayor Wants to End Housing Choice Stigma

 

TrailerParkBoysCommentaryAlKempExecutiveDirectorManufacturedHomeParkOwnersAllianceBritishColumbiaDailyBusienssNewsMHProNews1

Association leaders and savvy industry professionals in Canada and the U.S. know that many find the problematic terminology “trailer” – when applied to mobile homes, manufactured homes, and modular construction – is not only inaccurate, but offensive.

 

Taking on the Trash Talk! Are People Defined by their Housing Choice? Video, Photos

 

Weather Expert’s Surprising, Bombshell Statement on Tornado Deaths and Affordable Manufactured Homes

 

 

 

Enemies of Manufactured Homes, Communities; Rent Control, MHAction, George Soros, Ignorance, & Entropy

September 22nd, 2018 Comments off

 

EnemiesManufacturedHomesCommunitiesRentControlMHActionLogoGeorgeSorosIgnoranceEntropyMobileManufacturedHousingMHProNews

The headline isn’t an all-encompassing list of those bulleted items, individuals, or groups that act as opposition or de facto “enemies” which artificially stifle the advancement of manufactured homes, homeowners, and professionals. But they do capture the flavor of important realities confronting the most proven affordable permeant homes built in the U.S. today. Specifically, HUD Code manufactured homes.

 

Linked reports that document various points herein can be read later for greater depth of understanding on that aspect of this subject.

 

Fresh Facts, Figures, Future of Affordable Housing -Comparisons- Conventional Site-Built v Mobile/Manufactured Home Industry Data

 

The Urban Institute, Bloomberg, and the National Association of Realtors have all had stories and reports this year that on the surface are positive and useful in various ways for advancing the truth about manufactured housing.

 

Bloomberg “New Home for $90,000? Manufactured Housing Is Making a Comeback” Reveals MH Media Challenge

 

The Urban Institute phrasing of their data and reports particularly merits scrutiny, which their January 2018 study is covered in the related report and the links from it, which are found in the analysis linked below.

 

Urban Institute Ask for Correction in Analysis of their Manufactured Housing Research, “Follow the Facts,” “Follow the Money”

What may appear at first blush to be good news for the industry begs the question that the Urban Institute asked in January 2018. Given the affordable housing crisis, and the fact that manufactured homes are well positioned to address the need, why are so few HUD Code manufactured housing units being built?

 

Why is manufactured housing under-performing from its historic norms, as this chart from Skyline-Champion reflects?

 

ManufacturedHomeMHShipments1990-2017DailybusinessNewsManufacturedHousingMHProNews

 

Lawrence Yun, Chief Economist for the National Association of Realtors ® (NAR), says that only by homebuilders getting busy can solve the need for an estimated 8.3 million housing unit shortfall.  Tech gurus say that only factory-based homebuilding will close that gap.  So why aren’t the sales of HUD Code manufactured homes (MH) soaring?

 

LawrenceYunNARShort8.3MillionHousingUnitsRisingRentsHousingPricesCuredOnlyByMoreBuilding

Collage by MHProNews.

 

Why are RVs – which trailed MH shipments 20 years ago – now outselling MH by some 5 to 1?

 

WinnebagoRVWholesaleshipmentDataManufacturedHousingIndustryDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

 

Among the headwinds are individuals, and organizations that by accident or design are behaving in ways contrary to the interests of home owners, home seekers, and most manufactured housing professionals.  That is most notably true for MHVille “independents.” As an example,  tent control is an issue that’s widely misunderstood, and thus merits careful examination to reveal how it harms home owners, affordable housing seekers, and many businesses too.

 

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2018-09-22_0809MHAction2018MHActionNMHOARentControlProtestsManufacturedHousingIndustryDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

 

Above and below are some recent headlines, in screen captures from Google and alternative search engine, DuckDuckGo.

 

DuckDuckGoSearchResultsMHActionRentControlMobileManufacturedHomesDailyBusinessNewsMHProNEws

 

These are examples of what Marty Lavin, JD, a Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) award winning professional, has called “the [manufactured housing] industry’s other image campaign.”

There are routinely far more negative stories that fill the news and ether than positive ones.  As MHProNews has uniquely documented for some years, there are positive reports about modern manufactured housing that date back for over 2 decades.

 

GeorgeSorosWikipediaDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews527

Hungary’s [Prime Minister] Viktor Orbán has turned on George Soros.” = The Guardian. “Israel defends Hungary’s ‘antisemitic’ portrayal of George Soros…” = The Independent. Soros has backed groups like MoveOn, ACORN, and New York Communities for Change, which in turn has aligned with MHAction.

20 years ago, manufactured housing sales were soaring.  Today, they are snoring. While it is true that lending was “loose” 20 years ago, that alone doesn’t explain the disparity. Because loan quality doesn’t change the reality that there were demonstrably more customers actively seeking manufactured homes.

Demand is a function of news, marketing, education and desire.  This has been proven with client work by MHProNews’ related consulting/business development services operations.  In varied local markets, we’ve demonstrated that sales can soar, given proper adjustments in training, media engagement, and other proprietary methods. When sales can profitably grow by hundreds of percent year-over-year or in a 24 month time-frame, those cases are clear indicators that it can be done by others too.

 

DuckDuckGoEntropyDefinedLossInformationTransmittedMessageManufacturedHousingIndustryMHProNews

 

Logic and geniuses like Albert Einstein alike tell those willing to listen that doing more of the same, will only create a similar result.

It takes effort to change, or as John Bostick – President of Sunshine Homes – keenly observed, “Easy doesn’t pay well.” Change requires effort, and effort – energy is the antidote to entropy, the status quo, and more of the same.

People like George Soros could, in theory, be ‘won over.’ But Soros – and billionaires like Tom Steyer, Bill Gates, Jeff Bezos, and Warren Buffett – are demonstrably politically-aligned fellow travelers. They each supported in various ways former President Barack Obama and Secretary Hillary Clinton backed agendas. They’ve all grown vastly in wealth, while supporting candidates and causes that appear to be contrary to their interests. But when examined closely, big government has helped – not harmed – the wealth of billionaires.

The agendas of those named above – which are out in the open for all to see – have been demonstrably harmful economically to the interests of the vast majority of Americans, including manufactured home owners, and professionals. See related reports, linked below. “We Provide, You Decide.” © ## (News, analysis, and commentary.)

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FactoryBuiltCarsClothingAppliancesElectronicsCellsSmartPhonesHomesItJustFollowsLATonyKovach(C)2017MHproNewsBy L.A. “Tony” Kovach – publisher of industry-leading MHProNews.com and MHLivingNews.com.

Tony is the multiple award-winning managing member of LifeStyle Factory Homes, LLC, the parent company to MHProNews, and MHLivingNews.com.

Office 863-213-4090 |Connect on LinkedIn:
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Related References:

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

MH Communities, Owners, MH Independents Alert – NMHOA and MHAction Next Steps? – Part 1

 

Improving Resale Values: Manufactured Home Owners, Professionals, Shoppers – NMHOA & MHAction, What’s Right, Wrong, Supply & Demand – How to Achieve Mutual Victories

 

“Disastrous,” “Uncompetitive” “Takeover” of “Government Sanctioned Monopoly” Blasted in Congress as Bi-Partisan Fix Unveiled

Facebook, Marketing & News – Manufactured Housing Pros, Sarah Miller, ‘Citizens Against Monopoly’ Sound the Alarm

Wall Street Journal – Tech Giants are Monopolistic Threat to Businesses, U.S. Economy

Affordable Housing Revolt! Amazon’s Jeff Bezos Video Responds to “Breakup” Growing Monopoly, and Manufactured Housing

 

Progressive “Nation” Reports on Monopolies Cites Buffett, Clayton, Others – MH Industry Impact?

RVHorizon/MHP Funds Investing/Mobile Home Univ Communities Leader, Frank Rolfe’s Hidden Gem

April 30th, 2018 Comments off

Before diving into RVHorizon’s/MHP Funds leader Frank Rolfe’s hidden gem, an acknowledgement ought to be paid to his partner Dave Reynolds, and others in their rising enterprise. No one person in an operation of that size does it all solo.

 

When we say Rolfe’s “hidden gem,” it’s an insight that’s been hiding in plain sight since the video below was first produced.

This preface is warranted. It’s difficult to solve any problem(s) or challenge(s) that are not fully understood. Is that self-evident?

For example, even if a doctor has a guess as to a patient’s condition, a good MD does tests before proposing a diagnosis.  Only after tests does the physician suggest possible treatments. Treatments ideally are evidence and fact-based. “Clinical.” That’s the scientific way, and it fits business too.

Thus, the same should be true for Manufactured Home (MH) professionals and investors facing an obvious but often overlooked or ignored challenge.

Frank Rolfe says several things in less than a minute in this video. We’ll focus on only one. It’s this. Most people have little or no clue as to what manufactured housing truly is.  Because so many in the news media doesn’t get it about MH, neither does the public.

In front of dozens of pros, Darren Krolewski of MHVillage made a very similar statement in Tunica. Darren said that when talking to the general public, it takes them time to explain what a manufactured home is.

Both described a similar problem.

That’s an important initial step. Namely, understanding a root issue.

But the solution?

Has the solution to this challenge been clearly proposed or articulated? If so, please show me. Because what we often see is a search for things like a higher volume of traffic. Traffic is important. But the reality is that often, the traffic level is fine; what’s needed is a better method of converting the existing traffic you already have into more positive action-steps by possible buyers.

 

Modern Housing Options

The vast majority of adults in America know what an apartment, duplex, townhouse, rental, condo, or single family house is. People know what a tiny house is. Many if not most understand RVs.

By contrast, millions may know ‘something’ about manufactured housing. But what they think they know is often inaccurate. Others are ignorant, as Frank and Darren said. We know this from our own years of public engagement experiences.

That lack of knowledge or misunderstandings about manufactured homes (MH) are the opportunity in disguise for MH Industry professionals and investors. Learn the correct systems, apply them properly, and watch sales rapidly rise.

 

Candor and Compelling Facts over Fiction and Emotions

There’s plenty of excuses, self-delusions, and false-beliefs floating around MHVille. That’s not uncommon in America in general today.

But realities like those that Frank and Darren raised ought to be acknowledged. Then, the root cause(s) of those realities must be addressed. Only when that occurs can opportunities and profits be pursued and maximized.

This is one of the most fundamental challenges that individual MH locations must face. Because change occurs at the person and business level.

As the publisher of the industry’s top two trade media, and as a multi-decade professional services provider, we’ve dealt with this at a pragmatic level for years. ManufacturedHomeLivingNews.com is a specific part of the solution.

That’s a foundational start. But there’s more needed to tie that specific foundation to individual businesses and locations.  Those that properly have, see positive results.

James McGee and Chet Murphree say something essential near the end of this video. They’re spot on with their point. What comes before it is useful and interesting, but the punchline – the best – was saved for last in the video montage below.

 

 

How Serious Is the Challenge Frank and Darren Stated?

In our professional visits to communities and retail centers, often similar problems to what Frank and Darren pointed to are spotted. A property or sales center may be okay to wonderful, but still isn’t performing as well as local market conditions suggest they should be.

Among the core problems at the location level? Low conversion ratios of lookers to buyers.

For some years, before we travel, before we’ve charged potential marketing and sales clients a dime, we ask very specific questions.

Among them, will you as a client be open minded about addressing challenges that are found? Will you take constructive advice in a positive way?

We’re not in the hurt feelings business. Like an MD, we as publishers and as business growth service providers strive to deal in evidence-based realities.

Our goal is always to objectively identify the good, as well as what can or must be improved. Most successful locations are doing far more right than wrong. The good stuff remains unchanged. But when there’s a big fall off rate between visits and sales, there’s an obvious disconnect.

Most pros who hire a consultant or business development service provider get the reality that one must do something different, to achieve a different outcome.

That said, there are some who want a magic pill, a solution involving no practice changes. But isn’t that self-contradictory? If there was no change needed, then there would be no challenge.  Nor would there be a wondrous disguised opportunity that to correctly addressed, can yielded positive change. We tell those prospective clients who want magic without a sincere willingness to make any needed changes, thanks but no thanks.

 

The Sheer Size of the Problem Points to Immense Opportunities

Data publicly self-reported from MHVillage is useful in making this point. I’ve know Darren for well over a dozen years. He’s intelligent. Darren and his colleagues have a successful operation. So what follows shouldn’t be taken as a slam or a critique. This is an going to be a fast-based, objective look at their self-stated data.  Because frankly, it’s a common MH Industry issue. I applaud them for stating this in public and in writing.

The problem at retail centers (a.k.a. ‘Dealerships’) and communities is mirrored – not equal to, but suggested by – the MHVillage statistics.  Here are the impressive numbers on their website.  25 million unique visitors in a year, equaled about 80,000 sales.

MHVillage’s own data set says they convert only about 1/3 of 1 percent of shoppers.

You read that correctly, that’s .0032 percent (just a fraction less than a third of one percent) visits to purchases. Furthermore, their average sales price demonstrates – and Darren confirmed – that the vast majority of those purchases are used homes, not new ones.

While industry giant Clayton Homes doesn’t publish their data, anecdotal statements from their team members to the Daily Business News, and some known data suggest their results are similar to MHVillage’s, only they are more new home sales focused.

What do facts like the above mean to a business like yours?

I asked Darren, publicly on stage, and face-to-face afterwards with several standing nearby. He politely admitted, he doesn’t know the answer.

Ok, let’s lend him, and all others a hand. Here’s the logic of it.

  • Millions of people are looking online for housing.
  • Some come in, and shop in person.
  • There’s obviously two big fallouts or disconnects.
  • The first is drop-off is online, the next one is on site.

These bullets point to unsolved challenges, unresolved concerns, that the home shopping public has.  But when the home shopper’s concerns are properly understood and dealt with, they are far more likely to buy.  That’s why the data also points to huge opportunities. When there’s an 8.3 million affordable housing unit shortage in the U.S., that’s a wakeup call for our MH Industry and investors.

Just as consumers approach manufactured housing with some ignorance and skepticism, prospective business clients come to us with a similar, but different mix.  Some doubt they can sustainably grow sales at their business several hundred percent. But its true.  We don’t reveal client data, unless we both mutually agree to do so.  Here is a link to a client interview that freely stated how rapidly they grew.

Once properly begun, clients see the sales totals rising, the logistics of growth is often the greatest challenge. But businesses have to make those initial steps to get started to realize that change is possible, and the logistics can also be navigated, in honest, ethical, sustainable ways.

Real Estate Conversions Compared to MH Conversions

Facts are facts.

I spoke recently with a marketer who does both real estate and manufactured home marketing. He candidly said that they have exactly that same experience. Namely, that far more convert – call or message, come in, and buy – in real estate than for manufactured homes.

Restated, a higher percentage of shoppers pull the trigger in real estate to buy conventional housing, than manufactured home pros routinely experience.

 

Frank Rolfe’s Hidden Gem

Properly acting upon reality is a key part of the secret for increased, sustainable success.

So long as huge swaths of buyers in your market misunderstand or don’t get it about manufactured homes, the conversion ratios will remain low.

The good news is that a professional or investor can deal with this locally.  You don’t have to wait for anything magic to happen in Washington, Omaha, Arlington, or anywhere else.  You can make the difference in your market, by going to the root issues.

We’ll dig into some of the solution for that in today’s episode of the Monday Morning Manufactured Housing Sales Meeting.  That will be posted later this morning just below. ##  (Business development, related news, analysis and commentary.)

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Related Reports:

The Apprentice – Proper Understanding, Planning, and Execution – Monday Morning Manufactured Home Marketing and Sales Meeting

As a related thought, the reported reaction in Vegas to the Ducker Worldwide presentations suggests those backing that plan don’t have a solution useful to the majority. See that in the link here.

 

To provide a News Tips and/or Commentary, click this link. Please note if comments are on-or-off the record, thank you.

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FactoryBuiltCarsClothingAppliancesElectronicsCellsSmartPhonesHomesItJustFollowsLATonyKovachC2017MHproNewsBy L.A. “Tony” Kovach – Masthead commentary, for MHProNews.com.

Tony is the multiple award-winning managing member of LifeStyle Factory Homes, LLC, the parent company to MHProNews, and MHLivingNews.com.

Office 863-213-4090 |Connect on LinkedIn:
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Media Bias, Ignorance, Manufactured Homes, Agenda Journalism, the Truth About “Fake News”

April 9th, 2018 Comments off

FakeNewsManufacturedHomeDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

Both the left and the right have developed their news and other media platforms.

 

Both the American left and the right have watchdog sites that track the reports of the ‘other side.’  Sometimes those opposition researchers Fisk” – or fact-check – how a story is presented, in the light of the known facts.

For decades, news has been a mix of accurate and unbiased reports, while others are tainted by an agenda or prejudice. While the modern era may be more extreme in the “fake news” category than it was 40 years ago in American history, it is not per se a new phenomena.

Journalists, j-schools, and the Society of Professional Journalists code of ethics all state their goal to report facts accurately – without bias – and when needed, to “speak truth to power.”

That said, often, money, ratings, those unstated agendas, ignorance, or bias prevail over an accurate reporting of the truth.

Partially with that in mind, the Daily Business News for some time has provided periodic reports on third party guidance about the facts regarding media tilt.

The best chart we’ve seen on that topic is by the awarding-winning independent journalist, Sharyl Attkisson. Her left-right media graphic is below.  Keep in mind that just because something comes from a different source than what you or your friends may normally read or view, that doesn’t mean its automatically ‘bad.’   Once facts and bias are understood, then discerning the truth becomes easier.

MediaBiasChartSharylAttkissonLeftRightPostedDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

Full Measure’s Sharyl Attiksson’s media bias chart is useful in sorting out the agendas behind various headlines and news sources. http://www.mhpronews.com/blogs/daily-business-news/no-fire-just-smoke-and-democratic-clinton-supporter-says-enough/

 

Journalism Ignorance, Agenda and Bias Impacts Manufactured Housing Daily

Do a search on Google, Yahoo, or Bing using the two words – manufactured home” – select the news” tab, then hit enter. Search results vary by platform, device and location, but today’s result in our office looks like the following.

ManufacturedHomeIndustryNewsDailyBusinessNewsMHProNewsgooglesearch4.8.2018

This is the acid test, the day-by-day reality check on how manufactured housing is being reported by mainstream media. Note: people are people.  Most journalists want to get the facts correct. That said, no one knows what they don’t know. Some person has to take the time to INFORM the media, when a report reflects bias or ignorance.

 

Do the same test for “mobile home” – the result from a laptop search in central Florida as of the date and time shown is as follows.

MobileHomeSearchManufactguredHomendustryNewsDailyBusinessNewsMHProNewsgooglesearch4.8.2018

 

Then do a search using a phrase like, “trailer house,” “trailer park,” or “mobile home park.”  We’ve just done one of those three to illustrate, as shown below.

TrailerParkSearchManufactguredHomendustryNewsDailyBusinessNewsMHProNewsgooglesearch4.8.2018

 

These examples are the media-based impressions the general public sees, reads, and hears about manufactured housing.  It is what award-winning industry expert, Marty Lavin called, the “industry other image campaign.”

FrustrationNewsMediaManufacturedHousingIndustryDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

It is easy to curse a journalist or editor from afar. But experience shows that most reporters care about getting the facts correct.  But it normally takes personal engagement in order to get corrections, or prompt more accurate reporting.  With respect to political bias, that can be another story. But regarding manufactured housing, what the industry needs is routine, expert, respectful engagement in media at the local, regional, and national levels.

 

As the president of a HUD Code builder told MHProNews last week, “…two amazing things: the first is all the inaccurate garbage that gets put out [by media] about our industry. The second is you are the only person in the whole world that is willing to call people out on it! Amazing.” We thanked the sender for his comments, and noted others who support our or other efforts to correct the record.

But that quote and Lavin’s exemplifies several things.  Frustration is experienced by thousands of industry professionals about mainstream media reports.  That said, there has also been some progress too.  For example, note the 4 mainstream news sources.

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

One more example can make the point.  Several community owners have told us in recent months about an incident that took place in their community.  These incidents were at times from 4 or 5 star type properties. Yet, in each case, the media called their attractive community a trailer park” [sic].

SICSicutJournalismDefintionSocietyProfessionalJournalismDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

Until writers, anchors, editors, and producers realize that terminology is offensive, ignorant, or bigoted, it will continue to be a black eye in mainstream media reports.

pencil-head-its-not-a-trailer-park-els-chairman-sam-zell-c2013lifestyle-factory-homes-llc-all-rights-reserved-manufactured-ho

 

Is Journalism Dead?

Journalism isn’t dead, as some opinion writers or talk show hosts on the left or right may say.  There are a mix of accurate, inaccurate, or a blend of both in every report.  Bias routinely is reflected, especially when it comes to politics.

But with respect to manufactured housing?

Journalists don’t know what they don’t know.

That said, news media reports are often manipulated, and the narrative can be framed in a manipulative manner. The OZY Media, or PBS reports on manufactured housing are but two examples of how the narrative can be couched, including the choice of music on the video designed to make you feel sympathetic toward some alleged “victim” of a business.

Fighting Fake Manufactured Home News: Fisking OZY Media’s ‘Trailer Park Nation’

As a state association executive told MHProNews, they are not in the business of defending an apparent “bad actor,” and neither are we.

Given the constitutionally protected freedom and of the press, there is not much that can be done – at least obviously – by government to “regulate” the truth.

However, an effort launched years ago – CSPAN – routinely provides a window on federal oversight meetings.   Local and state meetings may also be carried by video. Viewership levels are often low. What that means is that anyone who wants to take the time to sift through hours of testimony to find the few minutes – or moments – can do so.  At times, they provide powerful insights. 

Time, talent, and the treasure are needed to support such efforts.

That said, such free access government video services can be useful, as three Daily Business News and another on MHLivingNews reported last week all originated from precisely such national or local hearing video feeds.

HUD Secretary Ben Carson and Senator Thom Tillis Discuss Affordable Housing and Manufactured Homes, Video

What Actual Home Owners Say…

Manufactured Housing, Media and You

Daily, news stories about our industry and customers are created.  Once published, because of search engines like Google, Yahoo, and Bing, those stories can multiply, and live on for years online.

Good, bad or indifferent, those news stories influence how a particular business, location or the industry appears to the public when certain searches like those shown further above are conducted.

Often, how a story is initially framed – the narrative – may shape other reports in its wake.

The solution?

LATonyKovach-QuestioningNYSAAteam-NewYorkHousingAssociation-MHProNews-com-PhotoCreditMarkSimon-250x167

L. A. “Tony” Kovach, photo by Mark Simon, shows Kovach engaging with SAAs in NY. 

I’ve spoken and communicated electronically with reporters, producers and editors for years about manufactured housing issues that they’d covered,” says MHProNews and MHLivingNews publisher L. A. ‘Tony’ Kovach. “They are people like you and me. Which means they too are impacted by human nature.”

Journalists,” says Kovach – who himself was engaged in journalism since high school and earned a journalism scholarship, before later turning to a business career in manufactured housing – “don’t know what they don’t know.”

Journalists and writers have deadlines and pressures to produce a story. They pick and chose what facts are presented. That’s why Brad Lovin’s insight last year is so spot on.”

 

PublishingHandPickedInformationCanBeWorsefortheImpressionItMakesOnManufacturedHomesandOurIndustryThanStatingEntirelyFalseInfo-BradLovinNCMHA

 

We noted last week that Berkshire Hathaway owned Clayton Homes has the ability to respond to any news story they want, via their own media relations people, Berkshire Hathaway’s media resources, or the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI), and their media resources,” said Tony Kovach.

So when a negative news story doesn’t get a response, it’s because MHI, Clayton or both decided not to respond.

Part of the purpose behind MHLivingNews and MHProNews is precisely to create opportunities to engage with media, researchers, nonprofits, or public officials,” Kovach explained. “It’s necessary. It doesn’t work every time, but it does work often enough when persistence and professionalism are involved.”

What industry readers ought to understand is that MHI knows all of this.  Their prior chairman addressed this in writing to MHProNews.

 

MHProNews presented on this subject at an MHI event, a few years back.  The response was positive.

 

AnnParmanVPManufacturedHousingInstituteMHILogoLATonyKovachMobileManufacturedHomeLivingNewsMHProNews800

In spite of a positive response to a presentation organized on media engagement by MHProNews’ L. A. “Tony” Kovach, MHI has yet to routinely engage the media when poor terminology, or misrepresented facts occur. There is no excuse for them to ignore this basic duty for a post-production association. 

So any time MHI, a surrogate of theirs, or others attempt to minimize ongoing pro-industry growth efforts done by MHProNews, or MHLivingNews, aren’t they arguably consciously deciding to limit the industry’s growth?  Before jumping to a conclusion on that question, note what MHI president Richard “Dick” Jennison said.

 

 

MHI, Industry Leaders, and their Surrogates

It is undeniable that for years, MHI and their members deliberately engaged with MHProNews. That meant their was trust for the consistent accuracy of our reports.  There are words of praise from MHI leaders and others across the industry spectrum, as comments above and below reflect.

The same is true for No one has to ‘like’ every report, but there ought to be a basic understanding of the premise at MHProNews, which is to educate and promote a better understanding of the industry.  If the problems are external, we spotlight them.  But when they are internal, there is a need to spotlight those too. Without calling out questionable behavior when it occurs, where is the motivation of a disengaged or poor actor to stop it?

the It should be noted that we’ve engaged for years with both national associations, Manufactured Housing Association for Regulatory Reform (MHARR), and MHI.  But MHI, over a year before we did a significant fact check on them, stopped providing their news. Why?

The point, beyond the facts being laid out, is that MHI must look in their own mirror, instead of pointing fingers behind the scenes.

 

ManufacturedHomeVideoMontageMHProfessionalsMainNewsMakersLATonyKovach-comVideos

 

What changed at MHI?

In a phrase, they made a decision some years ago to replace our reports with their own.

That decision was made while MHProNews were still MHI members.  Independent companies at MHI take note, because ours is not the only operation where MHI attempted to tip the scales against a dues paying member.

Note too that the MHI decision was made while MHLivingNews and MHProNews alike were actively supporting some of their lobbying efforts, like the Preserving Access to Manufactured Housing Act.  That’s indisputable.  The report below is one of several examples on MHLivingNews, far more are found on MHProNews.

Renters’ Nation: The Dark Side of Dodd-Frank and Its Impact on Affordable Housing

While you or we can call the examples in this report allegations, don’t years of published stories and produced videos prove the points?

 

Street Cred

Not only did MHProNews pioneer “The Daily Business News,” but it is still the only such resource of its kind in MHVille.

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While it is true that anyone can post anything on a blog or on social media, it’s different writing a few words vs. researching and crafting several news reports every business day, and then doing cogent related analysis.

The consistent reliability of our reports are what makes us number one in all manufactured housing industry trade publishing. We provide facts and analysis that has “street cred,” per our readers.

MobileHomeShipmentsManufacturedHomeShipmentChartMHIAShipmentsMHIndustryChampionSkylineHUDCodeDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

 

The proof we are still the runaway #1 is dramatically demonstrated in the photo, below. Notice that rack after rack had free magazines that were unclaimed.  First that happened at Louisville, so the provider bought those nice racks and placed them in several key places in Tunica.  The result in both cases was the same.  Very few were picked up, as the photos reflect.

MHInsiderManufacturedHousingINdustryDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

There’s a difference between being a mouthpiece for MHI or others that carry paid ads by MHI or prominent companies, vs. doing real reports and analysis.

That difference is “Industry News, Tips and Views Pros Can Use” vs. reading MHI talking points.

Never forget that reports by MHI have been documented at times to be spin. Some have been half truths, or distortions of reality. They’re arguably “Weaponized,” posturing a position, usually to make themselves look better than their actual performance merits.

One need only look at the latest shipment report – or see the chart above – to realize just how ineffective MHI’s advocacy and promotion are.

Keep in mind, they say they’re the post-production ‘umbrella‘ group representing “all segments of the factory-built housing.”   

If so, why isn’t MHI defending the industry against the daily onslaught of problematic news?

Is that why they duck questions now, which previously as recently as about a year ago they were still responding to our inquiries.

MHISrVPRickRobinsonManufacturedHousingInstituteLogoGenCounselMHProNews657

This graphic was created over 6 months ago, but the principle remains the same. To their credit, they’ve done better in their recent letter to HUD, but it still lacked critical information, see the Masthead, linked here.

There has been only one report MHProNews has done which turned out different than what our source(s) said. That one was the announced plot discussed by MHAction to protest at last year’s MHI’s annual meeting. But what happened instead is that MHAction protested at a Frank Rolfe event. Apparently, once the element of surprise was lost, they changed their plan.  There was also a hurricane that struck, which may have disrupted the plans of the disruptive MHAction activists.

Frank Rolfe, MHU/RV Horizons Protest by MHAction; Nathan Smith/SSK/MHI Flashbacks?

MHI should send a thank you note to us for that report. Frank Rolfe and his associates should know that the Daily Business News had no similar warning or tip prior to his meeting.

Summing Up

The bottom line is that mainstream media must be engaged.  Engaged industry trade media is part of the solution, but can’t do it alone.  The same holds true for problems within the industry.

Weeds don’t uproot themselves. A cancer that’s not addressed spreads. Those analogies are reminders that to fix the challenge of problematic reports, be they inside or outside of the industry, takes time, talent, and treasure.

But the payoff could be enormous.  The reverse is true too.  Failure to address these issues means they can be expected to continue.

We Provide, You Decide.” ©  ## (News, analysis, and commentary.)

Related Reports:

Clayton Homes, Manufactured Housing Industry News, Reality Check

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Marketing, Web, Video, Consulting, Recruiting and Training Resources

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

Reports, Reflections on Media Tilt, Bias, Ignorance, and Manufactured Housing

December 25th, 2017 Comments off

ImNotArguingIMJustExplainingWhyImRightCorrectDailyBusienssNewsMHProNewsAmong the widely reputed causes for manufactured housing’s relative low new home sales numbers, per industry professionals, is the allegedly problematic, slanted and inaccurate reporting by mainstream media.

It can manifest itself in several ways, including, but not limited to:

the use of incorrect terminology,
hyping the negative in reports on manufactured homes,
to inexplicably giving ‘more love’ to tiny houses – which in many cases, truly are ‘trailer houses’ – than they do to the arguably superior value of federally preemptive HUD code manufactured homes.

But as trade media – a subset of news media – we’re not bashing those in the mainstream media.  Because frankly, there’s a level of responsibility on both sides of the ongoing controversy over media and the manufactured home industry.

On the left-and-right of media bias – which research ranging from progressives in Harvard, to conservatives at Newsbusters admit exits – there are reasons why manufactured housing isn’t the only ones that suffer or complain.

From progressive Harvard to conservative Newsbusters, researchers across the left-right divide believe that the tilt of media bias is real. If it exists in political and economic issues, why would we be surprised if it exists on housing related topics, including manufactured homes?

 

MediaBiasChartSharylAttkissonLeftRightPostedDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

Full Measure’s Sharyl Attiksson’s media bias chart is useful in sorting out the agendas behind various headlines and news sources. http://www.mhpronews.com/blogs/daily-business-news/no-fire-just-smoke-and-democratic-clinton-supporter-says-enough/

 

2017MediaBiasAntiTrumpNewsBusterDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

 

Ann Parman Manufactured Housing Educational Institute (MHEI)

A few years ago, in the pre-Richard “Dick” Jennison era, this writer did a well-received presentation for the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) at their Congress and Expo on the need for and methods of proper mainstream media engagement.

AnnParmanVPManufacturedHousingInstituteMHILogoLATonyKovachMobileManufacturedHomeLivingNewsMHProNews800

There are Fundamentally Only Two Choices, Engage or Not Engage with News Media

As the post below indicates, there are two and only two fundamental choices.  You engage with media when a news item comes up, or you don’t.

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

Frank Rolfe made a simple but important point in this under one-minute video below.  When industry professionals fail to engage, it looks like there’s something to hide, and then there is no chance for a balanced story.

FrankRolfeMHFundRVHorizonsMobileHomeUniversityDailyBusinessNewsManufacturedHomeIndustryResearchReportsDataAnalysisMHProNews595

Others have sounded off on the media engagement topic, including those examples shown below.

PublishingHandPickedInformationCanBeWorsefortheImpressionItMakesOnManufacturedHomesandOurIndustryThanStatingEntirelyFalseInfo-BradLovinNCMHA
But the reality that the industry can get good media coverage is demonstrated by Paul Bradley, and ROC USA, on a routine basis.  If they can get positive media, why not others?

Manufactured Housing – Helping Those Most In Need

MHI award winner, Marty Lavin has called the overall coverage by the press of manufactured housing as the industry’s “other image campaign.”  While there have been exceptions, MHI’s primary response has been ersatz engagement, via advertorials, rather than direct engagement.  A careful look at the issue reveals how correct Lavin is, because the ratio of negative stories to positive ones is quite imbalanced.

“How to Find Affordable Home in Today’s Market,” Manufactured Housing Industry-Statepoint Media Fact-Check

So, when there is such a widespread agreement that media tends to get it wrong on manufactured housing, why are there so few willing to engage on the issue, when it strikes their local market?

SamLandyJDPresdientCEOUMHPropertiesReactsCallDefundNPR-postedManufacturedHomeIndustryVoicesMHProNews-

When Sam Landy led UMH was hit with negative news in the Nashville market earlier this year, this was his reply.

FEAR – False Evidence Appearing Real

This writer has mentioned to audiences and clients on previous occasions that when approached properly, local or regional media often want to get it right. They also often, but not always, want to avoid getting the facts wrong.

So facts, not just opinions or emotions, are important to the mainstream media professional.

Among the experiences shared at the seminar that Ann Parman and others at MHI praised was a true story about a meeting with two professionals with a regional magazine.  Some days after the requested fact-to-face meeting, they published an article that created one cringe-worthy use of the T-word, but through the rest of the article, absolutely glowed about manufactured homes.

The cost?  Only the time, and effort.

That wasn’t a one off, it has been repeated in several markets over the years.

The Takeaways

Most MH industry people who engage the media do so on what can be seen as a very shallow level of self-interest. They understandably want to promote themselves, and not much more.  But media professionals shy away from plugs.  That, they’ll tell you, is the roll of advertising.

But it is precisely education – genuine information, not hype or spin – that moves not only media, but also consumers.

Part of the value of MHProNews holding both industry members and others to account for good business ethics is that is that when the Daily Business News does a critique of media, or industry professionals, or anyone else, who have crossed a line, its more credible – because we have a history of balance.

“Jail Him!” NPR’s “Mobile Home Park Owners Can Spoil An Affordable American Dream” Refuted

Journalists have good reasons to properly cover manufactured housing.

1)     Odds are something like 4 to 17 percent of their viewers/readers live in a mobile or manufactured home, depending on the state or market. The nationwide average is about 7 percent.

2)     There is an affordable housing crisis, and its getting worse.

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

3)     The ethics guidelines of the Society of Professional Journalists call on them to give accurate, an unbiased coverage.

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4)     It isn’t just the president and his defenders that think there is media bias. Even Pope Francis has weighed in on the topic, and plans to do so more in the days ahead, as an ethical issue.

 

It should be noted again that MHProNews and MHLivingNews both track and report on stories across the left-right media divide.  There are good, bad and “meh” reporting on a wide range of issues across the media divide.

It is partially the responsibility of manufactured home pros to engage the media routinely enough in their own market to reverse the multi-decade trend of poor or inaccurate reports.  You can do that yourself or you can hire a professional – including one of the most experienced in the industry – this organization.

Who says? Ask Ann Parman or those who’ve praised our work in the media engagement field. ## (News, analysis, and commentary.)

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

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

https://twitter.com/LATonyKovach  @LATonyKovach
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2 Week NoticeMHProNews will be on a somewhat modified publication schedule from now through January 2nd, resuming normal scheduling in 2018. More detailsclick here.

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By L. A. “Tony” Kovach.

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

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

NIMBY? Fear? Ignorance? MHC Proposal on Hold

May 4th, 2017 Comments off
NIMBYnotInMyBackYard

Credit: OHRC.ON.CA, under fair use.

In Smyrna, North Carolina, landowner Carolyn Floyd-Robinson thought she had “checked all the boxes” when she was ready to contribute to the community. The response she received from city commissioner was not what she expected.

According to the Red Springs Citizen, Robinson appeared before the commissioners this week, seeking a conditional-use permit that would allow her to establish a 43- site manufactured home community on 24 acres she owns.

The property, which Robinson has owned for more than 10 years, is farmland and located in an area zoned residential/agricultural.

This land has always been family owned and I want to enhance the community,” Robinson told commissioners.

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Carolyn Floyd-Robinson. Credit: Red Springs Citizen.

It will be phased in in sections, the homes will all be new, and the leasing will be done through a property management company. There will be background checks, references will be required and there will be a property manager on site.”

Robinson did not receive the response she expected.

Three nearby property owners said that they are concerned a “mobile home park” would be a magnet for criminal activity. All three cited drug use and other criminal activities they have witnessed at a nearby community.

We don’t want that around our children,” said property owner Antionette Thompson.

We don’t need drugs in the area,” said Dematrius Hill. “It only takes one person with the wrong mindset.”

The responses were enough for commissioner Berlester Campbell to make a motion to table the request for the permit after hearing Robinson and opponents of the park argue their cases before the commissioners.

I know where the property is and I know it is all family land,” said Campbell. “I want us to sit down and discuss Wiregrass Road before this goes any further.”

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Smyrna, North Carolina (red marker). Credit: Google.

For Robinson, she believes that people had an opportunity to voice their opposition prior to her taking costly action.

I object,” said Robinson.

I’ve invested money in the project since the Planning Board approved my plans and no one came to that board’s meeting to voice objections.”

The commissioners say they will revisit the request in June.

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Danny Feagin. Credit: Aiken Standard.

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 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 the myths and facts surrounding manufactured housing, and the opportunity for millions to achieve the American Dream of home ownership, click here. ##

 

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RC Williams, MHProNews.

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