Posts Tagged ‘manufactured home loans’

FHA Call to Lenders on Workers, Contractors, re: Federal Government Shutdown

January 9th, 2019 Comments off


Shutdown theater continues in Washington, D.C. So, yesterday afternoon, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development’s Federal Housing Administration (FHA) requested that approved lenders consider the financial hardships caused by the partial federal shutdown.


That press release is below, including a letter linked from FHA’s Brian Montgomery.  After that there will be an infographic that manufactured home retailers, developers, and communities may find of interest.


WASHINGTON – The Federal Housing Administration (FHA) today called on all approved mortgagees and lenders to be sensitive to the financial hardships experienced by borrowers as a result of the shutdown, including those borrowers subject to furlough, layoff, or a reduction in income related to the shutdown.   Read FHA Commissioner Brian Montgomery’s letter to lenders and approved mortgagees.

FHA-approved mortgagees and lenders are reminded of their ongoing obligation to offer special forbearance to borrowers experiencing loss of income.

FHA expects all approved mortgagees and lenders to make every effort to communicate with and assist affected borrowers to the greatest extent possible by:

  • extending special forbearance plans to borrowers impacted by the shutdown, and
  • fully evaluating borrowers for available loss mitigation options to avoid foreclosure whenever possible.

“In accordance with longstanding policy, FHA expects mortgagees to assist borrowers experiencing a loss of income,” said FHA Commissioner Brian Montgomery in a letter to FHA-approved lenders and mortgagees.

FHA is also strongly encouraging all approved mortgagees and lenders to waive late fees for affected borrowers and to suspend credit reporting on borrowers nationwide who have been affected by the shutdown.




HUD’s mission is to create strong, sustainable, inclusive communities and quality affordable homes for all.


Here above is the promised infographic, and some 2019 FHA lending guidelines.  Turn to an FHA lender approved for manufactured home lending for additional details.

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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Manufactured Home Production Decline Accelerates in November 2018


New Report – More Americans Think Bad Time to Buy, Rentals Soar. Manufactured Housing, Opportunities, Takeaways?

“Major Step” in Independent National Post-Production Manufactured Housing Advocacy Taken, Per Trade Group







Rich Attkisson Dies, Manufactured Housing Career, Life Remembered

November 27th, 2017 Comments off

RichardAttkissonPassagesManufacturedHousingTMHADailyBusinessNewsMHproNewsWe are sad to report that Rich Attkisson of R.A. Financial passed away Friday, November 24,” said the Texas Manufactured Housing Association (TMHA).

Rich and his wife Dorothy were always present at the Annual TMHA Conventions and you could almost always find Rich on the golf course during the TMHA golf tournaments.  They were active members for over 30 years and very supportive of the Association and the industry as a whole.  Our thoughts and prayers go out to Dorothy the entire Attkisson family during this very difficult time,” per the association’s release to the Daily Business News.

Richard H. “Rich” Attkisson (aka “Big Daddy”) passed away on November 24th, 2017. Rich was born in Cleveland, Ohio, on May 8th, 1935 to John Attkisson and Eleanor Knittel Attkisson, the first of five children. The family moved to Elyria, Ohio, when he was young, where he grew up and graduated from Elyria High School in 1953,” per Caitlin Nauert, at the TMHA.

He joined the U.S. Air Force soon thereafter and proudly served his country for 12 years when he decided to try his wings in civilian life. His first civilian job was with Associates Finance Company, and he was in some type of financing the remainder of his life,” Nauert said.

R.A. Financial was primarily a used manufactured home lender, said the TMHA. The Associates was a significant new home lender in manufactured housing before pulling out due to the post-1998 industry meltdown.

Beyond sports, the TMHA noted that “Rich was very active in his Church, the Cibolo St. Paul Evangelical Church. He served on the Church Council, was co-chairman on the annual free Community Christmas Breakfast, and served monthly on the Church’s “Outreach Project”, serving free meals to needy citizens in the community.”


Rich is survived by his wife of 52 years, Dorothy “Dolly” Katt Attkisson; daughter Kristina Attkisson and son Richard, Jr., Arlington, Virginia; step-daughter and son-in-law Karen and Alfred Mitchell, San Antonio; step-son and daughter-in-law Keith and Joane Rylander Williams, Austin; four granddaughters: Alice “Ali” Attkisson, Virginia Beach, Virginia; Brooke A. Attkisson, South Carolina; Cara E. Attkisson, Fairfax, Virginia; and Kasey A. Johnson, San Antonio; sister and brother-in-law Eleanor and William “Bill” Parmenter; brother and sister-in-law Jack and Pam Attkisson; brother Robert “Bobby” Attkisson, all of Elyria, Ohio, and sister and brother-in-law Ruthann and Jim Nemeth, Wakeman, Ohio; sister-in-law and brother-in-law Sylvia and Robert “Bob” Seiler, San Antonio, and sister-in-law Viola “Bootsy” Norwood, Abilene; as well as numerous nieces and nephews in Ohio, Florida, Texas, and Oklahoma,” wrote Nauert.

Rich is preceded in death by his parents and nephew William “Billy” Parmenter.

Visitation will be held at Sunset Funeral Home on Austin Highway, on Tuesday, November 28th.  It will be from 6:00 to 800 P.M.

Funeral Services will be held at Cibolo St. Paul Evangelical Church, 108 South Main Street, Cibolo, at 10:00 A.M on Wednesday, November 29th. The memorial services will be conducted by Pastor Jason Ford and Rev. Chester Sassmann.

MHProNews extends its condolences to all those touched by the loss.  May Rich Attkisson rest in peace. ## (Passages, obituary.)

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Historic! Affordable Manufactured Housing, Local/ National Politics, Professionals, Investors and the Home-Buying Public

November 4th, 2017 Comments off

SearsCatalogPreCutHomesCircaEarly1900ManufacturedModularPrefabHousingIndsutryDailyBusinessNewsMHProNewsFrom its earliest days, America had a need, a thirst, for affordable housing. About a century ago, Sears sold pre-cut kit homes by catalog as one way to obtain that affordable American Dream of home ownership.

As Americans have long been a people ‘on the move,’ the original trailer houses started to pop up in the 1930s.


Those true trailer houses – that was their proper name – had to be ‘parked’ somewhere. Thus evolved the first ‘mobile home parks.’


Over time, trailers evolved into mobile homes. While most where built by companies that cared about quality, enough problems over issues such as thin and poorly insulated walls or fire safety, occurred that in 1974 – with the cooperation of many in the industry – a set of federal construction and safety standards took place.


Just as phones have evolved over the last roughly 100 years, so too has factory built homes evolved. Trailers led to mobile homes, which later became manufactured homes. Each was an important, evolutionary step. See the Walk Down Memory Land story linked here, or the two videos, above.

 Those standards were were by law regulated by the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). Thus was born the HUD Code for Manufactured Housing.


The article above was published last year, so now it has been 41 years and counting since the first manufactured home was built. There have been NO New MOBILE HOMES BUILT in the USA in over 41 years.

Since June 15,1976, the day the first HUD Code manufactured homes were built, there have been no more mobile homes built in the USA. That many of those pre-HUD Code mobile homes were better built than many thought is attested to by the fact that roughly 2 million of them still exist today. Thousands upon thousands of those older, true mobile homes have been updated.  They attract and keep people like the Chione family (see video interview below), who used to own conventional housing, who are now very happy in their more affordable, quality lifestyle.


That said, numbers of those older mobile homes that aren’t updated tend to have more fires than modern manufactured homes.  


See the download and all the facts from the NFPA, other sources at this link above and below. Credit: MHLivingNews.

The older mobile homes that aren’t properly installed are also more windstorm prone.  So as news watchers note, those old mobile homes are often destroyed in tragic ways. 

As the graphic reflects, hundreds of thousands of mobile homes and manufactured were being sold every year.


Pre-HUD Code mobile home shipments peaked in the early 1970s at numbers well over 500,000 new housing units a year. As the video interview with the engineer below reflects, conventional housing adopted some production saving techniques from the mobile and manufactured housing industry, to keep their costs lower than they would otherwise be too.

 As engineer Skip VanZant says in the video interview below, factory built homes influenced conventional housing in some ways, just as site-builders also influence manufactured and modular home builders today.



A variety of conditions, including poorly underwritten and thousands of fraudulent loans were made in the 1990s. Manufactured housing had its version of the conventional mortgage/housing crisis about a decade before. But unlike the conventional housing lenders circa 2008 and its aftermath, manufactured home lenders that had loans that went sour a decade before got no federal bailouts.

Most of the personal property/home only/“chattel loan” lenders in manufactured housing left the space, never to return.


Even with higher interest rates on most chattel loans than conventional housing, which exists because there are no federal guarantees and other common-sense market forces, the cost AND PAYMENTS on most manufactured homes is LOWER than other forms of housing. Who said? The federal government, after a in depth study. Click here to see that research by the GAO.

But other lenders either never entered into the questionable practices that caused the meltdown, or they instituted safeguards that cleaned up bad practices.  There was no need for a manufactured housing version of Dodd-Frank post 1998-2003, because the loans were not taxpayer backed, and because the industry painfully cleaned up its own mess.

Mainstream Housing Compared to Manufactured Homes, by Informed Consumers

Informed consumers like Jerry and Karen McKibben are but one of many examples of well-to-do home owners who opted for the manufactured home lifestyle.  


The McKibbens did so after careful study of the facts about the manufactured homes of today, vs. the mobile homes of yesteryear.


More than one veteran finance pros of that era told MHProNews phrases said that conventional housing lenders did similarly to what caused the MH Industry’s 1998-2003 meltdown.  When “no doc,” ”liar loans” were made by the millions in the run-up to the 2008 mortgage/housing crisis, many of those customers may have been better suited to manufactured homes. But the conventional housing market made buying a new or existing site built house easy.


MHI award winner, retail, communities and finance veteran – and industry success story – attorney Marty Lavin did an in depth, 25 minute interview MHProNews. In that interview, we walked through the issues facing consumers and financing, including a historic look at the meltdown and how the industry cleaned up its own act.  While Lavin is well know fro the quotes in the graphic above, as he sat in his multi-million dollar yacht for a discussion with MHProNews, he said what maybe every bit as compelling an insight. Lavin explained the lesson of “Not Enough Hunger.” Not to be missed reading, linked below.


Additionally, the problems of FEMA/Katrina and the image issues that resulted from that impacted the industry too.



Not to be overlooked, was the buyout of Clayton Homes in 2003 by Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway. The subsequent buyout of Oakwood Homes by Buffett’s firm was later rolled into Clayton.


As this next chart reflects, the decline in shipments continued. The 2008 Conventional Housing Crisis, also impacted Manufactured Homes too. It was in mid-October 2009 that what we called today MHProNews was first published. The first mission was to get the industry to believe Itself again.



From Cavco annual report, based upon MHI data.  

The industry finally bottomed out in 2010. The slow climb up is reflected in the numbers as shown.


Meanwhile, federal support for the GSEs and the conventional housing market continued, but not without a price. The Dodd-Frank born Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) took over the relevant parts of the SAFE Act.



Richard Cordray quotes and those from the report and video on this page, and linked here. In the video below, Cordray explains why the rates and points are higher on lower cost MH chattel home loans.

Now recall that manufactured housing played no appreciable role in the multiple trillion dollar housing collapse. Manufactured home lenders played no role in that debacle. But the was punished, so to speak, along with the rest of the housing markets lenders.


As a result of a combination of factors, including regulator risk and relatively low volume of new manufactured home sales, several lenders who were profitable and prudent exited the market.  U.S. Bank is the best known.  Months before that event, MHProNews published an article entitled The High Cost of Low Volume Sales. It presaged in some ways the U.S. Bank and other industry exits.


On Mainstream Media sites, like Washington D.C.’s The Hill, or on MHLivingNews, MHProNews and hundreds of other mainstream media sites, L. A. “Tony” Kovach and Lifestyle Factory Homes, LLC promoted the MHI sponsored Preserving Access to Manufactured Housing Act at our own cost. As the email forwarded to MHProNews by a third party from Kevin Clayton reveals, they felt the message was “Strong.” State associations shared this message, why didn’t MHI?



This forwarded email was forwarded to MHProNews by a third party. Why wasn’t all of the pro-industry research, video, and educational materials supporting MHI’s Preserving Access bill shared by MHI?

Almost two decades since the peak of 1998, thousands of the industry’s professionals, including some owners, never experienced those higher volume heydays.

But the visionaries new all along that Manufactured Homes would make a come back. 

Sam Zell,
John Bostick –
Sunshine Homes,
Frank Rolfe,
Gary and Tom Fath –
New Durham Estates,
John Caron – Caron Campbell,
Highland Mobile Park,
Deer Valley Homebuilders,
Bob Crawford,
dozens of other clients and sponsors, along with
MHARR and thousands of industry professionals across the spectrum have seen the value of promoting manufactured housing, and being goal and solution oriented.


However, there are also those industry professionals that point to:

rent control,
business certainty, the
truth about MH appreciation, and
HUD related regulatory issues among several other important causes for the industry’s failure to advance back to its true potential.



As each of the above links demonstrate, those are issues that MHLivingNews, MHProNews and/or MHARR have spotlighted, often for years.


That these are serious issues are demonstrated by facts from MHI’s members, such as Clayton Homes or MHVillage. Clayton Homes has had cumulatively had millions of views of its videos. Even though they are the largest factory builder today, and sell roughly half of the new homes shipped last year, why aren’t their sales far higher?


The industry needs to wake up to the realities behind the numbers.

MHVillage understandably boasts of millions of visitors each year.  But their own statistics reveals that they are converting only a tiny fraction of those into buyers.


A client company told our publisher the following.  Tony, the most powerful thing I’ve heard at this event is when you said that if pretty pictures, Facebook likes and good-looking videos was all that was necessary for industry growth, then we’d be selling half-a-million or more new homes a year right now.’


Clayton and Cavco are #1 and #2 in industry production today. 20 years ago, it was Fleetwood and Champion who were the top two producers. With all of their marketing dollars, Clayton (or even Cavco) are growing at a slower pace than the industry at large. Pretty pictures, great websites and Facebook likes have value. But if that alone were enough, wouldn’t those two largest MHI members be growing faster than say Sunshine Homes, or New Durham Estates are?

What MHLivingNews and our related client experiences have demonstrated is this. Serious home buyers who are well qualified or who want to pay cash want answers, not slick ads. Tom Fath and Stan Posey said it well.


This isn’t about mud slinging against MHI, even though some tell MHProNews that MHI has for several years alledgedy attempted to sideline our pro-growth efforts. Forget for the moment any conspiracy theories you’ve heard.
Just answer this. What good reason did MHI, 2, 3 or 4 years ago have for not promoting their own member’s – MHLivingNews – MHProNews – best practices, pro-growth efforts?

Education, and information are keys.

That education and information is necessary for professionals as well as for the general public.


MHI members, MHARR members, state associations and their members and others have praised the work of MHLivingNews and MHProNews.


Hillary Clinton, left, Warren Buffett, right. Credit – Boston Globe.  But Buffett’s stock has soared since the Trump victory.  Buffett pushed for Clinton, has been pro-tax, pro-Dodd Frank, pro-big government policies like ObamaCare.

Before MHProNews began seriously spotlighting the weaknesses at MHI, the question has to be asked.  Why did MHI undermine, and/or fail to support our pro-growth, educational efforts? Even when those efforts would have benefited MHI and their members?


It is not the purpose of today’s article to do a deep dive into the MHI issue, nor about allegations of Dick Jennison and a few others at MHI trying to undermine our pro-growth work.  But rather it is to create a baseline snapshot of where the industry came from, is and where it could be going.  Our story is just a subset of the larger story of the industry.


Isn’t Frank Rolfe correct in saying that to a great extent, ‘the industry itself’ (read, MHI) has slowed the progress of manufactured home acceptance and advancement in a market that is crying out for affordable housing solutions?

Nathan Smith – Pro-Active, not Re-Active and ‘All to myself…’ 


President Trump, Dr. Ben Carson, MHARR

Warren Buffett, Wall Street, CFPB and Secretary Hillary Clinton’s Presidential Campaign


The bombshell this week revealed by interim Democratic National Committee (DNC) Chair Donna Brazile stated that the Clinton campaign colluded with the DNC to rig the nomination process in favor of Hillary Clinton.  When asked this week by CNN, Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) said she absolutely believes that the nomination process was rigged.


For close observers of the electoral process, none of it was a surprise. Many of those items about the “rigged system” and others were noted by MHProNews in the run-up to the election.

What was the surprise is that such a high ranking Democrat as Donna Brazile came out and said the system was corrupted in print. As the Daily Business News summary this week reflected, Brazile also tossed President Barack Obama under the bus as a cause for the Democrats poor financial and other party woes.

Warren Buffett supported Clinton, early on and proudly.

How did that make sense, for the owner of the industry’s largest manufactured home lenders and producers?


Warren Buffett, right, credit Wikipedia. Tim Williams, right, credit, LinkedIn. Collage credit, MHProNews.


Is it because, as a rival producer has told MHProNews that Dodd-Frank and the CFPB helped make Berkshire Hathaway, Clayton, Vanderbilt, 21st Mortgage and Wells Fargo a lot of money?



Notice. One can agree with 21st Mortgage CEO and prior MHI Chairman Tim Williams’ presentation, from which the slide above was taken with permission, while still questioning how it came to be that Williams was being intellectually at odds with Berkshire Hathaway Chairman, Warren Buffett. To see all of William’s informative slides, click the graphic above.

Why did 21st President and CEO Tim Williams say to an MHI audience that the threat to the MH industry was coming from progressive thought? Yet, Chairman Buffett was supporting that same progressive ideological stance by supporting Hillary Clinton?

Wall Street and Warren Buffett wanted Dodd-Frank kept in place. Why?

Is it because heavy regulatory burdens drove so many smaller lenders out of business?

Why did progressives like the Seattle Times, or CFED (since rebranded as Prosperity Now) attack Buffett, Clayton and his lenders? Why do they do so still? Do they really not see eye to eye on this relatively modest changes to Dodd-Frank that the Preserving Access to Manufactured Housing Act seeks?

If that is so important to the future of the industry, why is Buffett’s Clayton buying up retail locations, suppliers and production?  Is it a conflict of interest for Clayton to dominate the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) and yet be buying up conventional home builders now?

Why has no one else in the industry noted that Buffett also has made a move in the real estate brokerage?


Housing will always be needed. Alan Amy isn’t alone or the first to suggest that the billionaires want to dominate manufactured housing.

Manufactured homes are the future of housing.  But there are caveats, which the Manufactured Housing Association for Regulatory Reform (MHARR), MHProNews and MHLivingNews have documented over the course of the years.

The race for control of Congress in 2018 and the next presidential cycle in 2020 began just after the end if the last election.

President Donald J Trump, and his Vice President Mike Pence, began and have stayed on message with their agenda, saying they will be in the promise keeping business.

While MHProNews was editorially supporting the Trump campaign, MHI has not yet denied that it had two pro-Clinton speakers on their stage last year in Chicago, just days before the 2016 election. There was no formal endorsement of Clinton, but MHI was also predicting that the Senate would go Democratic too.

Tim Williams was Chair at the time. When the Obama Administration had promised to veto Preserving Access if it passed, why was there no hint that the election of then candidate Trump and the GOP holding the Senate would be good for Preserving Access? Instead, what was said was that MHI would approach both parities and seek that bi-partisan effort that had already failed for 5 years.


If MHI was serious about getting Preserving Access passed, why didn’t they promote any of the articles or videos that MHLivingNews and MHProNews produced in support of those efforts?

Doesn’t Equity Lifestyle Properties (ELS) Sam Zell suggest the answer?

Didn’t failure to secure an independent lending base for the industry cost the industry big bucks?

Who’s failure was it, if not MHI’s? It wasn’t MHARR’s bill, it was MHI’s bill. Unofficially, MHARR sources have told MHProNews for years that if any member of staffer of Congress asked them, they always said they supported Preserving Access.

But MHARR felt that Duty to Serve was the better course. Isn’t Zell’s logic and MHARR’s alike?


The record reflects that this publication was supporting MHI’s Preserving Access efforts. We did so even when there was a steady stream of allegations and actions by MHI staffers, presumably with the consent of executive committee members, to undermine us, even as we were members and supported their efforts.

Next Friday, MHARR members meet by conference call. Among their decisions will be if they expand their membership to include the post-production, meaning lenders, financial services, communities, retailers, services, transporters and others that MHI now has as members.

The signals are mixed, and we aren’t going to predict if MHARR expands or not.

But isn’t there a need for an association that is going to faithfully represent the industry’s post-prosecutor without the kinds of apparent conflicts of interest that Buffett-dominated MHI has?

It is important to note that most of MHI’s members de facto have no say in the governing of the body. While there are several boards, only the four person MHI Executive Committee has the final say. 

The facts, concerns, allegations and opportunities the industry has are hiding in plain sight, are thus not? Good people have worked for years to support MHI’s efforts. What has over 15 million in spending over 5 years achieved?


The Trump Administration has signaled that it will take a look at anti-trust issues. Some say that hasn’t yet occurred for a variety of tactical and strategic reasons. If it does occur, will that in time look into the anti-trust, racial, and other concerns about Buffett/Clayton and their lenders raised by Democrats like those shown?

MHI and Berkshire Hathaway units like Clayton, VMF and 21st have routinely been given the opportunity to respond to such issues. In Deadwood, MHI Sr VP and General Counsel! Rick Robinson said, “Tony, I won’t be taking any questions from the press” in front of dozens of people.



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.

Why has MHI taken so many logically flawed positions, such as de facto supporting Pam Danner, when the Trump Administration would make it easy to replace her?


If there is a problem with the facts as laid out, MHI, Berkshire Hathaway or their surrogates are hereby invited again to respond. Why have they routinely ducked, dodged, detracted, distracted, and defamed instead? 

It’s your industry. Will you wait for a monopolistic operation to gobble you up for pennies on the dollar some day? Perhaps to wake up on day 5 years or so from now, and see that Manufactured Housing is doing tens of billions more a year in business? Only to see that your business was worth more than you obtained? 

Nothing is changed until it is challenged. “We Provide, You Decide.” ©  ## (News, Analysis, Commentary.)

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Soheyla is a co-founder and managing member of LifeStyle Factory Homes, LLC,
parent company to MHProNews and



New Long-Term, Market Rate Loans in Manufactured Home Communities, Report, Reactions

October 18th, 2017 Comments off

NewHampshireROCUSAhomecommunityphotoDaiyBusinessNewsMHProNewsGreat announcement, huh?  Here’s my take and on-the-record comments,” said ROC USA President, Paul Bradley to MHProNews. 

Bradley was commenting on an article by Patrick Barnard in Mortgage Orb, that ran under the headline, “New 30-Year Loan Program for Manufactured Homes Launched in New Hampshire.”

Getting a jumpstart on its mandate from the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) under the new Duty to Serve program that takes effect in January,” stated Barnard, “Fannie Mae is partnering with the New Hampshire Housing Finance Authority (NHHFA) to bring greater liquidity to manufactured home financing market.”

New Hampshire is one of the first states to pass legislation recognizing manufactured homes located in resident-owned communities as real property. This is in contrast to other states, where manufactured homes on leased or communal lands are only recognized as personal property and thus are not eligible for mortgages,” per Barnard’s article.


Bernard added that, “In those cases when a manufactured home is located on leased land, typically the only way to finance it is via a chattel loan. This creates an affordability issue because chattel loans carry much higher interest rates compared with 30-year fixed-rate mortgages.”

Often Overlooked Background

Regular MHLivingNews and MHProNews readers should note that while rates may be higher on a personal property, home only or “chattel loan,” that a federal study by the Government Accountability Office (GAO) documented that the payments on manufactured homes are still lower on average than other forms of housing.


As part of a longer comment, linked here, Bradley stated that Fannie Mae has been making “home only” loans in approved ROC’s since 2008.



Titus Dare. SVP, Eagle One Financial, Credit: MHProNews.

That dovetailed with a statement last year from Titus Dare with Eagle One Financial, who told MHProNews that the GSEs had been making some home only loans.

Bradley told MHProNews, “understand that MH in land lease communities in NH is titled as real estate.  Hence, a lender makes a mortgage loan even if they’re financing only the home. Such a mortgage does not include the land and does not disrupt the underlying commercial financing.”

ROC’s president also said that something similar could be achieved by other community owners.

Now, two things:

  1. This is the very construct that land lease owners could establish.  In fact, it’s what Freddie Mac went to market with in the mid-2000s with a leasehold loan product that required titling as real estate.  Several states created an “opt in” real estate titling law for MH to take advantage of the program.  And, since, the Uniform Law Commission passed an opt in titling law for states to adopt.  It’s all in waiting.
  2. Residential mortgage loans will carry longer terms and lower interest rates than chattel even if the GSEs enter the chattel market with pilots next year.  That’s because mortgage loans are going into existing and very large securities.  Chattel will have a different securitization path.

Bradley’s full comment can be seen by clicking the image above, or his link here.

So, as I’ve said in several industry talks I’ve given on the subject, there are parallels to what we’re doing for industry players interested in providing long-term secure homeownership opportunities.”

Both Bradley and a source in Washington told MHProNews that the Mortgage Orb’s report was in fact a limited program.

But as the industry attempts to navigate the internal and external challenge to achieving meaningful lending by the GSEs, this report, per Bradley, is a “Great announcement.”   ## (News, analysis, commentary.)

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Clayton, FB Cleared, Regulatory Approvals

July 7th, 2017 Comments off

Logos for each firm are provided under fair use guidelines.

FB Financial Corporation, a holding company of FirstBank, announced that all regulatory approvals have been received with respect to FirstBank’s proposed acquisition of Clayton Bank and Trust and American City Bank.

In a media release, MHProNews has been informed that, Christopher T. Holmes, FB Financial’s President and CEO stated, “We are excited to have received all necessary regulatory approvals for our pending acquisition of the Clayton Banks which we expect to close at the end of the month. The cultures of the banks have complemented each other even better than we expected. Both the Clayton and FirstBank teams have been working hard to ensure a smooth integration of the companies.”

As previously reported in the Daily Business News, Jim Clayton told MHProNews about his enthusiasm over the deal. Clayton Bank is heavily involved in manufactured housing, as the link here demonstrates.

Numerous Clayton loans involve manufactured homes and communities.

Jim (Ayers @ FirstBank) and I have been great friends for decades and have a lot in common, including being from rural West Tennessee,” said Clayton to MHProNews publisher, L. A. “Tony” Kovach.

The following information, is per their news release.


Clayton Bank is headquartered in Knoxville, Tennessee and has assets of approximately $885 million. The bank has 13 branches across its markets in Knoxville, Jackson, Oakland, Covington, Henderson, Lexington, Friendship and Cookeville, Tennessee.

American City Bank is headquartered in Tullahoma, Tennessee and has assets of approximately $314 million. It operates five branches in Tullahoma, Manchester, Lynchburg and Decherd, Tennessee.

Jim ClaytonrightLATonyKovachleftPhotocreditMHProNewscom

Jim Clayton, right. L. A. “Tony” Kovach, left – in a 2017 photo. Photo credit,


FB Financial Corporation (FBK) is a bank holding company headquartered in Nashville, Tennessee. FB Financial operates through its wholly owned banking subsidiary, FirstBank, the third largest Tennessee-headquartered bank, with 45 full-service bank branches across Tennessee, North Alabama and North Georgia, and a national mortgage business with offices across the Southeast. FirstBank serves five of the largest metropolitan markets in Tennessee and has approximately $3.2 billion in total assets. ##

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

SoheylaKovachManufacturedHomeLivingNewsManufacturedHousingIndustryDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews-Submitted by Soheyla Kovach to the Daily Business News for

New Federal Lending Option “Opens” for Manufactured Homes in Quiet, pre-New Year Report

January 2nd, 2017 Comments off

RHS-USDA-loansOnManufacturedHomesManufacuredHousingIndustryDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews-The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Rural Housing Service (RHS) announced it would begin a pilot project that would open up lending for manufactured home loans on existing (pre-owned, used) manufactured homes, per a report by Brian Collins on National Mortgage News.

Doug Ryan, director of affordable homeownership with the Center for Economic Development (CFED) in Washington cheered the move.

Now the 502 program can be used to finance existing homes that were


Doug Ryan, photo credit, MHProNews.

not previously financed through USDA,” he said. “We do think that will open up the market in these states. This could be very positive.”

The 2-year pilot is being offered in Colorado, Illinois, Louisiana, New York, Ohio, Texas, Vermont, New Hampshire and Wyoming.


Lesli Gooch. Credit: MHI.

The pilot program is an important first step. We look forward to working with USDA to take this important change nationwide,” said Lesli Gooch, a senior vice president at the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI).

BrianCollinsNationalMortgageNewsOne of the bigger changes in this announcement is that previously, RHS loans on existing manufactured homes were more limited.

If you have a 1,000-square-foot manufactured home that is a couple years old that is titled as real estate on a permanent foundation and lot, now you have more potential buyers,” Ryan said.

But with some 80% of manufactured home loans currently being made via chattel (personal property, home only) lending, how much of a difference this might make in the marketplace short term appears to be limited.

Center for American Progress

In a post dated September 13, 2016 on American Progress, co-authors Shiv Rawal, Sarah Edelman, and Gerado Sanz said the following about manufactured homes and the need for more rural lending options.


Rural manufactured homes, credit, CFED.

“Manufactured housing

Manufactured housing, which refers to houses built in factories that are transported to their sites and that meet certain federal safety standards, remains an important source of affordable housing for rural communities.

Many manufactured housing loans are titled as personal property or so-called chattel loans instead of as real estate loans, the way other mortgages are titled. While in some cases chattel loans may have certain cost savings for consumers, real estate loans tend to have many more consumer protections and lower interest rates.

Participants in the roundtable noted that manufactured housing lending tends to be concentrated among a handful of lenders. Additionally, according to a 2013 report by the Fair Mortgage Collaborative, borrowers with FICO scores under 650 may face difficulties in obtaining a mortgage-titled manufactured home.

University of Georgia, USDA Published Report

As the cost of housing rises, manufactured housing remains an affordable option to help more Americans realize their dream of homeownership,” says the Non-Technical Summary of a USDA reported, dated in 2008.


Image credit, RiverBankFinance.

The summary continues, “However, obstacles stand in the way of increasing the prevalence of manufactured housing. Negative perceptions of manufactured housing and zoning barriers prevent people from owning manufactured housing. The aim of this study is not just to learn more about the state of manufactured housing, but also to prepare a foundation for action plans to make the dream of homeownership come true for more Georgians and to help policy makers understand the issues for their community in a broader context.”

The project was terminated.  The post on the USDA website is linked as a download, click here.

Progress is progress. But approaching a decade later, how much has changed from University of Georgia’s description?

Given that the affordable housing crisis has only grown since that date, the need to educate and quicken the pace of such efforts needs to be enhanced dramatically. ##

(Image credits are as shown above.)


Soheyla Kovach.

Submitted by Soheyla Kovach to the Daily Business News on MHProNews.

American Banking News – Key MHI Staff “Excoriated” for Failing Their Mission, Members

June 28th, 2016 Comments off

TradeAssocUnderFireManufacturedHousingInstitute-MHI-BankVaultDoorLocked-imagecreditsMHIFlickrCreativeCommons-MHProNews-editorialfairuseguidlines-600x442-With Dodd-Frank, financing and CFPB related issues routinely on the minds of manufactured housing industry professionals, The Daily Business News  has learned from American Banking News the following report on the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI), which is made available below.

The Manufactured Housing Institute has been leading the campaign to bring more lenders into the manufactured housing market for years.”

Lesli Gooch, Senior V.P. of Government Affairs, MHI

How does one explain the repeated failures by MHI staff to embrace options and opportunities, or new lenders … that could lead the industry into more competitive lending and more new manufactured home sales?”

L. A. “Tony” Kovach, elected MHI board member

Arlington, VA June 27, 2016 – The Manufactured Housing Institute, the industry’s largest trade group, has been excoriated in an unprecedented op-ed by a member of one of its boards and publisher of the industry’s leading professional trade publication.

The known facts suggest that, for whatever reasons or motives, MHI has missed numerous opportunities to expand manufactured housing home-only and land/home lending. The impact on the factory-built housing industry in terms of lost sales could be in the billions of dollars annually,” L.A. “Tony” Kovach writes in the latest edition of MHProNews.

MHI says it represents all segments of the factory-built housing industry; its stated mission is to provide research, promotion, education and government relations programs, and by building and facilitating consensus within the industry.

But M. Mark Weiss, president and CEO for the Manufactured Housing Association for Regulatory Reform (MHARR) has repeatedly stated that MHI is tilting toward Berkshire Hathaway-owned MH lenders’ goals.

So consensus is lacking, according to the June 25 editorial, in which Kovach cites complaints from industry professionals – both members and non-members of MHI — who question the trade group’s failure to promote new lending in manufactured housing – which MHI staff asserts is a top priority for the organization.

Some, writes Kovach, “accuse MHI of de facto choking off lending with the goal of causing independent businesses to sell off to MHI member companies, or close shop.”

Others couch their criticism in terms of missed opportunities and questionable competence.

It is MHI members who are quietly telling (MHProNews) that MHI had the opportunity to get the MLO rule changed. Those same voices tell us that achieving that success could have led to others on points and fee thresholds, the twin goals of Preserving Access.”

If MHI’s leadership wants to move the ball down the field and score points that sell more homes, a serious series of changes must take place at MHI,” Kovach says.

Discontent with the status quo has reached the point where there are rumblings of some willing to put forth a million dollars in seed money to launch a new trade organization to promote the industry’s interests.

Kovach points out that questions and concerns about MHI’s performance center on certain staff members, not MHI itself.

These concerns are routinely brought to us by members and third parties. So MHProNews’ spotlighting staff related issues at the organization isn’t the same as condemning the organization, of which this writer is a member.”

It’s sad what’s happening in Arlington,” says Kovach, where MHI is headquartered.

At a time when the demand for affordable housing is growing, Kovach laments MHI’s staff are missing the opportunity to better tell the industry’s story and thus advance its appeal to the home buying public, public officials and to attract and expand lending opportunities.

Read more on the growing controversies surrounding MHI, are linked here. ##

Photo Caption/Credits:

How much does the locked door on more lending options cost manufactured housing industry members every year? Trade association under fire for failing their mission, members. Closed bank vault door image credit, FlickrCreativeCommons, MHI Logo credit – MHI – both images are used under fair use guidelines for editorial purposes. Text graphic and collage credit,

matthew-silver-daily-business-news-mhpronews-comSelected by Matthew J Silver for the Daily Business News-MHProNews.

Congressional Testimony Negates Sensationalized Charges of Predatory Lending

June 11th, 2016 Comments off

IDontThinkThereWasEverMuchHighCostLendingInTheManufacturedHousingMarket-stillcreditCSPAN2--RichardCordrayCFPBdirector-Posted-MHLivingNews-com-With all the negative publicity swirling around alleged predatory lending for purchasers of manufactured homes by the Seattle Times, National Public Radio and BuzzFeed within the last year, it’s time the media paid attention to congressional testimony that refutes these notions, according to L. A. “Tony” Kovach, publisher of MHLivingNews and MHProNews.

The Dodd-Frank Act that was supposed to protect people of modest means has had the opposite effect, hindering buyers, sellers and lenders in the affordable housing market.

Director of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) Richard Cordray explained to a Senate committee why, percentage-wise, it is more expensive to originate and service conventional housing and manufactured home loans under $100,000, its just business math. He also said “there never was much high-cost lending” on MH, thus refuting news stories that accuse the industry of predatory lending.

During a hearing last spring Sen. Bob Corker (R-TN) tells Director Cordray that some of the regulations prevent homeownership, and in some cases it costs more to rent than to buy a home. Cordray responds, “this isn’t optimal for anyone.” Sen. Joe Donnelly (D-IN) spoke extensively about CFPB’s regulations that hamper MH sales.

A separate video linked in the MHLivingNews story documents how Don Glisson Jr., an MH lender who is chairman and CEO of Triad Financial Services, sheding light on this same topic.  Glisson explains on camera that without federal subsidies and with no taxpayer risk, chattel loans are made at the lender’s risk—without a secondary market, the lender has to hold the loan. If other lenders could charge less and still make a profit, they would quickly move in. That they don’t indicates MH lending is some fat profit and is clearly not predatory.

So both industry professionals and Cordray agree that MH lending isn’t predatory.  Then why has some in the mainstream media tried to paint a different picture?

A report from a 2014 Government Accountability Office (GAO) reveals that even with two-thirds of manufactured home loans at slightly higher rates, the payments on MH are often significantly lower than rent or other housing options.

Kovach says: “With the affordable housing crisis growing, there is an urgent need for fresh, accurate reporting that shines a light on the unfortunate consequences of federal rules that were well intended, but instead hurt the very people they were meant to help.”

Despite these barriers to affordable housing, MHProNews understands the sale of new manufactured homes is up 20 percent over last year’s total. Imagine how production might be if the barriers came down.

For additional reports and links to this information, please click. ##

(Photo credit: MHLivingNews Inside MH video, still from CSPAN2, graphic text, credit – MHLivingNews.)

matthew-silver-daily-business-news-mhpronews-comArticle submitted by Matthew J Silver to Daily Business News-MHProNews.

Dodd-Frank Act Remains a Stumbling Block to Manufactured Home Lending

May 30th, 2016 Comments off

mhi photo credit mh under productionSteve Sinovic, writing in abqjournal, says sales of manufactured home sales are up, a popular and affordable housing choice for New Mexicans, some eighteen percent of whom live in manufactured housing. However, financing costs are being driven up by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) implementation of the Dodd-Frank law. Additionally, the two government sponsored enterprises (GSEs), Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, are reluctant to deal in manufactured home personal property loans, thereby depriving MH sales of a secondary market. This means that lenders have to maintain the loans on their books and thus have a somewhat higher interest rate than conventional housing.  

Even with that rate difference, most save money on manufactured home payments, as MHLivingNews has often documented, as in the example linked below. 

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

Paul Stull, president and CEO of the New Mexico Credit Union Association, is joining with other credit unions in lobbying to make more low interest loans available to families of more modest means who want to purchase a manufactured home (MH). He noted a provision in the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) that results in closing costs on a manufactured home similar to that of a large traditional-built home.

We are trying to get the CFPB to realize that one size does not fit all,” said Stull of what he considers regulatory overreach. “The same rules that apply to million-dollar homes” apply to a new MH selling for $40,000 in New Mexico.

Dave Woodruff, president and CEO of Los Alamos-based Zia Credit Union, said affordable housing in the northern New Mexico region he serves is challenging because of lower incomes and limited available land. He lost 15 to 20 loans in the last year because they were not secured by land. It ‘s not that the applicants were especially risky, but rather because of CFPB rules.

The absence of credit unions and community banks willing to make MH loans has concentrated 90 percent of MH lending in the hands of a few specialized MH lenders: Triad Financial, Cascade, Clayton Homes/Vanderbilt Mortgage and Finance, 21st Mortgage Corp. and San Antonio Credit Union’s CU Factory Built Lending and Mountainside Financial Service, as the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) tells the abqjournal.   

While the thrust of Sinovic’s report was insightful, it also cites outdated and inaccurate information that has since been contradicted by Richard Cordray, U.S. Senators, consumers and MH Lenders – which will be featured in a new video report on MHLivingNews.  MHPros and investors should aquaint themselves with a timely Op-Ed by Titus Dare, on why the GSEs are not all in on Duty to Serve being applied to chattel lending.

Duran lauds the finance companies willing to take the risk for the borrowers who have less than sterling credit, but realize the advantage of a manufactured homes over apartments. “They are building their credit. They are building equity,” said Duran of buyers. “A manufactured home is a great way to get in on the ground level.”

For an interview with Triad Financial’s Don Glisson, Jr. that has insights on why MH lending rates tend to be higher, please click here. ##

(Photo credit: Manufactured Housing Institute–manufactured homes under construction)

matthew-silver-daily-business-news-mhpronews-comArticle submitted by Matthew J. Silver to Daily Business News-MHProNews.

New Horizon Hits Record Levels in Manufactured Home Lending

October 22nd, 2015 Comments off

MH two story for sale   greg vote getty images creditFrom Redlands, California comes word that manufactured home lender New Horizon Mortgage Concepts has posted record growth in recent years for manufactured home loans, according to pressreleaserocket. Never having experienced this amount of growth, the company’s Q3 2015 is $500,000 over their 2014 year end totals, and expects to hit their goal of four million dollars for all of 2015.

New Horizon broker Ken Soderlund says, “People are realizing that Manufactured Homes are an excellent value and that they are being built to a consistently high standard. In addition, they can be customized to suit almost anybody’s taste including Stucco and Adobe Finishes.

He adds that the company has been successful because it offers many types of MH financing, conventional and government lending using FHA and VA products. MHProNews has learned the agency has even financed reverse mortgages. ##

(Photo credit: Getty Images/Greg Vote–two-story manufactured home for sale)

matthew-silver-daily-business-news-mhpronews-comArticle submitted by Matthew J. Silver to Daily Business News-MHProNews.