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

October 21st, 2018 No comments

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Among the emails waiting this morning? Some pull quotes.

 

Tony, MHProNews keeps breaking the mold, and continues to redefine manufactured housing [industry trade] publishing. Everything else is boring by comparison.”

 

There’s opinions, and then there’s MHProNews. Love the documentation you provide with your articles. Keep it coming.”

 

The next two are part of longer messages…

 

“…MHARR. MHProNews. That’s it.”

After years in MHI, it just made me feel ill to read last night’s [Saturday’s] lead…”

There’s more, and along with cheers there are a few who jeer. That Saturday evening story, are among those linked further below. Beyond the feedback, thanks too for the latest news tips.

Let’s get down to this Sunday morning’s headline topic.

Freedom is never free. It always comes at a price.

Slavery has a price too.

Choose freedom.

Several months ago, we reported on what an independent told the Daily Business News on MHProNewsthey think they own us.”

There are forces that can break the stranglehold that in direct or oblique ways have artificially limited manufactured housing. The federal government is among them.

Whether you love, hate, or are non-pulsed by the 45th President of the United States (POTUS), there are clues that successful midterm – a red tide – could witness something special happening in MHVille.

We look at facts, evidence, and follow the money. We source across the left-right media divide.  It’s necessary to have a balanced view of reality.

That said, some Democrats – including Elizabeth Warren or Maxine Waters – talk about monopolies. But it remains to be seen if their words are like what Democrats that said about a decade ago who claimed that they supported a border wall. Or like when Bill Clinton said that the “era of big government is over.” 20 years later, that’s a laugh-line now, isn’t it?

There are Democratic politicos that verbally blast billionaires, while taking millions in PAC support from billionaire Democrats. It’s a charade, a con.  That’s not a slam on Democrat supporters. We’re independents for good reasons. The pay-for-play game is done by many to various degrees in D.C. in states or locally, not just Democrats.

But the question is, are the Dems’ leader talk of antitrust words only? After all, they had eight years under Barack Obama’s presidency. Antitrust is technically part of the executive branch’s authority. What did Democrats do to break up the giants?

Nada.

Zip.

Nothing.

While it is an executive branch function, those billionaires buy votes by funding the elections of candidates.  We’ve laid out the facts.  You hear about the libertarian leaning Koch brothers in the mainstream media. But most of the big billionaire donors are DemocratsThat’s just a fact. Then, compare the promises made vs. promises kept by the 44th and 45th presidents.  Look at the facts, the evidence – because it matters to your business.

MarketWatch ran a story about how the S&P 500’s CEOs are politically active.  They give often big donations, and some are very partisan ones. Don’t be afraid of politics, don’t avoid it, because the big boys are all in.

You better be in the water too.  Not necessarily with the dollars, but with information, and votes.

It’s Marty Lavin’s generic quote, but I’m paraphrasing it here.

Pay attention to what people say, but then examine how closely their actions match their words.  Also, follow the money. Follow the facts. Follow the evidence. Use your God-given common sense.

The Trump Administration has also been sharpening the tone against billionaire monopolistic firms. Jeff Bezos/Amazon, Google, and Facebook have drawn specific mention. But they are not alone.

But are there clues that Berkshire could get the trust-busting treatment in 2019 too?

We won’t say more than the obvious. President Donald J. Trump has plenty of reasons to do so.  The president has a long memory.  He knows Warren Buffett.  He knows George Soros.  Both Buffett and Soros have worked to undermine him and his presidency.  See yesterday’s red-hot report on how following the Buffett money-trail reveals how he has funded anti-manufactured home activist MHAction, linked further below.

 

Fear of Anti-Trust Goes Beyond Berkshire

There will be some in MHVille that would cheer a federal antitrust case.

But some, and I’m not talking here about Berkshire folks, some people simply fear change. So, what would the impact of antitrust actions against those noted above likely lead to in our industry?

There has never been a federal anti-monopoly action in manufactured housing to date. But recall this: “The breakup of the Bell System was mandated on January 8, 1982, by an agreed consent [based upon federal antitrust action]…AT&T was, at the time, the sole provider of telephone service throughout most” of the U.S., said Wikipedia.

That AT&T breakup in the 1980s may provide clues for manufactured housing, and other industries too.

Smaller companies in the AT&T trust-bust resulted in a surge of new technologies and competition. The same could well occur in manufactured housing too. After the federal AT&T case:

  • Telecom grew as a result.
  • Cellular developed.
  • The internet emerged.
  • Is there any of that you’d want reversed?

Who else in MHVille has reported that NY Stern Professor Scott Galloway says about how breaking up the monopolies will bring new oxygen into the system. No one, beyond this pro-industry, pro-consumer news site.  That’s arguably why we get strong readership and feedback, like those emails noted above.

Professor Galloway argues breaking up the big four in tech will revive the economy, not harm it.  He’s a tech expert. We’re just citing the expert’s view.

Consider the facts, evidence, and money.  Democrats –

  • by default or by design,
  • fostered through legislation and regulations,
  • bigger giants in lending,
  • giants that dominate in manufactured housing,
  • huge firms that dominate in tech, and beyond.
  • Democrats are the one-party monopoly rule, that’s a reality in several parts of the U.S. today.
  • Recall that Warren Buffett is a student of history. He loves to read such things.  Mr. Buffett applies the lessons of history.  Berkshire’s boss has also admitted that he expects others not to read, not to learn from history, and to be trapped by their own habits. Prove Buffett wrong daily, as thousands of others do, by reading MHProNews each day.
  • The history of Berkshire’s purportedly bad behavior is all the reason independents, thinking Democrats, and Republicans should vote for pro-Trump GOP candidates in the midterms.

It is enlightened self-interest. Pragmatic.

MHProNews has made it clear for months why we believe Team Trump’s performance to date merits more House and Senate seats. We said weeks ago what some mainstream media outlets are only now beginning to report.

That is? Despite over half a year of bluster about a so-called ‘blue wave,’ odds are the GOP expands control of the U.S. Senate. Barring some shocking to voters, a gain by the GOP in the Senate seems likely. We think it’s possible that the GOP could end up at or near 60 seats.  Every election comes down to voters voting.

The House of Representatives is a tougher call. Democrats have more money. Democrats have the bulk of the media megaphones. The candidates are less well known. But there are still data points, policy reasons, and a booming economy that should make us believe the GOP can hold the House.

Even some mainstream media pundits are beginning to say it too.

As political independents that read the tea leaves, we predicted in 2016 a Trump upset. Yes, we worked for it, and gladly so, because we thought then and now that POTUS Trump would be world’s better than a POTUS Hillary.  We said in 2016 that the GOP could – and did – hold the House and Senate.

MHI has all of their experts, resources, and lobbyists.  But MHI got it wrong about election 2016.  So, what else is new at their Arlington, VA HQ?

With about 21 months of President Trump’s track record.  The Trump Administration has proven to be promise keepers to the degree that Democrats have made possible.

If Dems win the House, the next two years will be gridlock and endless investigations of issues that will be as spurious as ‘Russia collusion’ proved to be. Recall we said about 18 months ago that there is no federal crime of collusion on what the Trump campaign was being accused of, and that was not our opinion, that was the view Harvard University’s Democratic legal wiz Alan Dershowitz.  There’s fluff that Democrats and their media allies use to whip up the less informed parts of their base.

POTUS Trump was an is an outsider, not a classic Republican, nor a Democrat. He’s pragmatic.  He’s funny, colorful, and on policy after policy, he’s just plain correct. Sure, there are tweets that stir controversy.  We can wonder about his personal life, but there is nothing there that comes close to what Bill Clinton did.

All those tweets and stuff just keeps the mainstream media from talking about issues that matter. Don’t follow the red herring. Follow the substance over the style, but let’s admit that the style is entertaining.

We’ve built numerous reports on MHLivingNews yesterday and in past weeks that could nudge some visitors towards the President’s agenda, all based upon facts and evidence.

We have detailed numerous fact-and-evidence based reports – just one linked here – on MHProNews of the tragic ways that Berkshire and their MHI tool purportedly took illicit advantage of thousands of manufactured home independents.

Make no mistake. Buffett’s funding of the Tides and through them, MHAction and others, is a sign of just how low they can go.  If they have done it to so many others, do you want to be the next – or even the last – one eaten?

Or do you want to hitch your boxcar onto arguably the best train that is moving, i.e., the Trump agenda and his GOP allies in the House and Senate?

We’ve been told in D.C. that our formal HUD, DOE et al comments letters are getting special attention.  More on that later.

Independents and homeowners alike have great reasons to vote for a pro-growth, de-regulatory moves of the Trump agenda. But antitrust is a countercurrent.  Attacking monopolies or oligopolies would mean using regulations that are already on the books. Antitrust action can be slowed or benefited by Congress.

So, every GOP vote is like voting against Berkshire and MHI.

Should Berkshire get the break-up treatment, don’t be surprised at the ways that MHI will be caught up in that maelstrom.  There are several ways we’ve shown in recent years that MHI has purportedly crossed the line.  They’ve never challenged it.

As independents, every Pro-Trump GOP Vote is like voting for freedom, more professional and more investment opportunities.

For residents and homeowners, a pro-GOP vote is how enhanced preemption, better lending, and other reforms get done that will raise their manufactured homes’ values.

MHI has been the arguable tool for Berkshire in MHVille for some years. The triangle between Arlington, VA based MHI – and their big brothers in Omaha and Knoxville – have been an unholy alliance for too long. Vote to change it.  That’s why a new association is underway, also one of the stories linked below.

As an FYI – if you know those who were specifically hurt financially by MHI, Clayton, 21st, et al, please have them send an email with ANTITRUST in the subject line.

16 days from now, the second phase of freedom from Omaha, Knoxville and Arlington could come. God bless America. God bless, inspire and guide all.  Thanks for checking in, and we’ll turn this over to Soheyla to finish what follows below.

LATonyKovachGoodBipartisanshipShouldalwaysBepredicatedBenefitallhonestindustrymembersnotslectfewquote

The comment above was said with respect to another recent topic, but relates to this issue too. FYI, the hot lined featured image above is different than the hotlink recent topic.

L. A. ‘Tony’ Kovach.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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To learn more about business development or to advertise on the #1 site in MHVille among professionals and investors, click here.

 

What’s New on MHLivingNews

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

 

The Latest News from MHARR

 

HUD “Clarification” on Frost-Free IB Offers More Questions and Confusion Than Answers

HUD Will Not Finalize Proposed “Frost-Free” Interpretive Bulletin

 

What’s New on the Masthead

GIGO, Esther Sullivan, Clayton Homes, Boston Globe, GSMOL on ‘Manufactured Insecurity-Mobile Home Parks and Americans’ Tenuous Right to Place’

 

Headline News Week in Review on the Daily Business News on MHProNews

1DailyBusinessNewsLogoMHProNewsLogo-1

Saturday 10.20.2018

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

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

 

Friday 10.19.2018 

MarketWatch Reports Warren Buffett’s Midterm Campaign Contributions 

Nickel Plan Could Boost Economy, Says Moody’s, Black MAGA Housing Story, Plus MH Market Updates

Official Federal Housing and Construction Activity Report, Video

Official Federal Housing and Construction Activity Report, Video

While GSEs Play Footsy with MHI, Congressional Leadership Demands Answers on FHFA

While GSEs Play Footsy with MHI, Congressional Leadership Demands Answers on FHFA

 

Thursday 10.18.2018

Has POTUS Trump Signaled Major Financial System Change After Midterms? Plus, MH Market Updates

Metro Media News 7 Video Report Compares MODS to Lego, Belittles “Mobile Homes” 

“The Creepy Line” Video DocuDrama, Manufactured Housing – The Problem, Solution, and You

“The Creepy Line” Video DocuDrama, Manufactured Housing – The Problem, Solution, and You

Manufactured Housing Institute Shipment Data, FEMA, an Inside Look

Manufactured Housing Institute Shipment Data, FEMA, an Inside Look

 

Wednesday 10.17.2018 

10 Year Record for America, U.S. Named World’s Most Competitive Economy

10 Year Record for America, U.S. Named World’s Most Competitive Economy

Budget Cuts, Mick Mulvaney, and Manufactured Housing Market Updates

Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI), Women, #MeToo and Insider Information

Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI), Women, #MeToo and Insider Information

New National Manufactured Housing Association Makes Its Appeal to Industry Members

New National Manufactured Housing Association Makes Its Appeal to Industry Members

 

Tuesday 10.16.2018 

HUD Secretary Carson Visits North Carolina, POTUS to FL, Survey Hurricane Damage, Response Efforts, Federal Funds

Morgan Stanley, CNBC – Investors Want GOP Wave but Ponder Split Control of Congress, Plus MH Market Updates

Morgan Stanley, CNBC – Investors Want GOP Wave but Ponder Split Control of Congress, Plus MH Market Updates

Big Manufactured Home Community Operator, MH Owner Kid Rock, John James, Donald Trump Jr, and Debbie Stabenow

Big Manufactured Home Community Operator, MH Owner Kid Rock, John James, Donald Trump Jr, and Debbie Stabenow

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

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

 

Monday 10.15.2018

Debts, Retail, Dollars, and the Manufactured Housing Industry Evening Market Report 

HUD Announces Post Disaster Assistance for Hurricane Recovery 

Was Manufactured Housing Advocate Congressman Andy Barr Backstabbed?

Was Manufactured Housing Advocate Congressman Andy Barr Backstabbed?

Celebrating Manufactured Housing! Protect, Educate, Promote, and “the Ground Floor”

Celebrating Manufactured Housing! Protect, Educate, Promote, and “the Ground Floor”

 

Sunday 10.14.2018

For Independents, Independent-Minded MH Professionals, and Freedom-Loving Investors Only, Sunday Headline News Recap 10-7 to 10.14.2018

For Independents, Independent-Minded MH Professionals, and Freedom-Loving Investors Only, Sunday Headline News Recap 10-7 to 10.14.2018

We do roughly 2 dozen stories a week between MHProNews and ManufacturedHomeLivingNews. That is roughly the same or more as all of the other trade publishers combined. We carefully selected each topic.  The evening market reports have evolved into a featured highlight, but has all of the market data wrapped around it.  No one else in MHVille does what we do.  Period. That’s why we have the largest audience, by far.  Our sincere thanks for that.

Speaking of thanks, our sources at Legacy Housing tell us that it rained an rained during their event, but they packed their seminars, there was lots of energy and hundreds – hundreds – of floors were sold. They are executed.  We thank them for the opportunity to serve during the last few months.

Back to curation.  Every topic has merit. We highlight some, but that is not to diminish others. We don’t want to weight a page down too much. That said, please take an a little more than an hour and watch the Creepy Line video, see our report and some teaser videos about it, linked above.  Once you’ve seen it, have your friends watch it too.

Then please ponder what Tony said above.

We take our publishing, consulting, marketing and other roles seriously.  When people trust you with their time, that means we are responsible for trying to get it right.  We strive to make sure that we focus on the issues that others can’t, don’t or won’t mention. Among the nicer comments from competitors is the one that said that we cover the stories that others talk about in bars and restaurants. There are nice people in our industry’s trade media. But we cover the reports that others who may be bought and paid for won’t touch.

There are still some professionals that tell us they’d rather not see anything political here on MHProNews. We understand and respect that view. But we disagree, and here’s why. Warren Buffett and his buddies are highly political. They debatably use politics to help get what they want for their businesses. Furthermore, placement issues are all about local or state politics.

Ignore political considerations at your own peril.

The manufactured housing industry is marching towards the midterms, now just over 3 weeks away. No one in manufactured housing even comes close to the kind of breadth of coverage for the issues that impact your business. Maybe that’s why we’re number 1. Our sincere thanks to readers like you, our business development clients and sponsors for making it so.

Together with honest people of good will, we can make our industry and our nation achieve its great potential. “We Provide, You Decide.” © ## (Sunday Morning, weekly headline news review, analysis, and commentary.)

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

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SoheylaKovachDailyBusinessNewsMHProNewsMHLivingNewsSubmitted by Soheyla Kovach to the Daily Business News for MHProNews.com. Soheyla is a managing member of LifeStyle Factory Homes, LLC, the parent company to MHProNews, and MHLivingNews.com.

Related Reports:

Biblical “Talents,” Words, Ideas, Evidence, and Practical Impact on Manufactured Housing, Sunday Morning Recap, MHProNews Headlines Aug 26 to Sept 2, 2018

Clayton’s Surprising Result – Sunday Morning Weekly Recap, MH Headline Reports and News in Review Aug 19 to Aug 26, 2018

MarketWatch Reports Warren Buffett’s Midterm Campaign Contributions

October 19th, 2018 No comments

WarrenBuffettKevinClaytonPhotosClaytonHomesBerkshireHathawayBuffettCampaigncontributionsReuterMHProNews

According to research published by MarketWatch, Warren Buffett, Chairman of Berkshire Hathaway, has given 100% of his campaign contributions to Democrats during the 2016 election cycle.  Berkshire has numerous manufactured housing brands, such as Clayton Homes.

 

Company executives often steer clear of any appearance of partisanship, in large part because they don’t want to alienate customers and investors who back the other side,” said MarketWatch.

WarrenBuffettMarketWatchGivingIn2018CampaignDemocrats

 

About 100 CEOs whose companies are components of the S&P 500 have been willing to fly a markedly Democratic or Republican flag in their political giving as individuals during the current election cycle,” said that source.

Because of so-called ‘dark money,’ interlocking directorates, and the like, it can be difficult to ‘follow the money’ when it all of the donations that flows from wealthy individuals, and finds their way into campaigns or activist causes.

DarkMoneyDefinedYourDicitionaryDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

 

Contrary to what MarketWatch said, Buffett’s political leanings has been rather open for years.  He was a strong supporter of Barack Obama, and Hillary Clinton campaigns too. He denounced Donald J. Trump in several campaign events with Secretary Clinton, but toned it down after Mr. Trump became the president elect.

Jim Clayton, founder of Clayton Homes and Clayton Bank, is among those in MHVille who like Buffett, have deep ties or sway over the Manufactured Housing Institute MHI, who are supporting Democratic Senate and other candidates.

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

 

Andy Barr has been called a champion of the industry, and Marsha Blackburn supported MHI’s bills too.  So why were these loyalists apparently betrayed by MHI’s power players? By contrast, President Trump has specifically supported these candidates.  Note that it was POTUS Trump, not then President Obama who signed S 2155, that gave manufactured housing some regulatory relief.  And note too that it was former POTUS Obama, that put Dodd-Frank and the CFPB on the necks of manufactured housing, when realtors and the RV business escaped similar challenges.

Was Manufactured Housing Advocate Congressman Andy Barr Backstabbed?

 

Note that MHProNews editorially acknowledges the right of any citizen to use their money in any lawful or moral manner. But part of the concerns being spotlighted here is the industry professionals are being told that MHI is supporting lower regulations.  In fact, in various key races, there has been support for those who would vote for higher regulations, or roll backs of tax cuts, or other anti-growth agenda items championed by President Trump.

PhotoCollageElizabethWarrenHillaryClintonBarackObamaWarrenBuffettDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

Rephrased, aren’t MHI’s big money players being duplicitous?  Didn’t Tim Williams say that the biggest threat to the industry was the progressive agenda that Jim Clayton, Warren Buffett, Nathan Smith and others are supporting?

 

VicePresidentMikePenceWifeKarenHandOverHeartPledgeColts49ersGameWashingtonTimesDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

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. http://www.MHProNews.com/industry-news/industry-in-focus/is-tim-williams-21st-mortgage-ceo-mhi-chair-at-odds-with-berkshire-hathaway-chairman-warren-buffett

 

Watch for a special report Saturday.  ICYMI or need a refresher, see the related reports, further below.  For those who find it a concern that MHI claims to be fighting regulations, while key power players are giving to those who want higher taxes and more regulations, this is your fact-based follow the money wake-up call. That’s this evening’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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3) Marketing, Web, Video, Consulting, Recruiting and Training Re-sources

SoheylaKovachDailyBusinessNewsMHProNewsMHLivingNewsSubmitted by Soheyla Kovach to the Daily Business News for MHProNews.com. Soheyla is a managing member of LifeStyle Factory Homes, LLC, the parent company to MHProNews, and MHLivingNews.com.

 

 

 

Related Reports:

 

Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) PAC Supports Former Hillary Clinton VP, Senator Tim Kaine, Other Anti-Trump Agenda Democrats

 

Danny Glover, Presidents Barack Obama & Donald Trump, Promises Kept, and Affordable Manufactured Housing

Nathan Smith, SSK Communities, From Mobile Home Resident to Manufactured Home Communities Owner, & Manufactured Housing Institute Leader

“Toxic Trailers” – Clayton Homes, Warren Buffett, Kevin Clayton, Clintons – Exposé Videos

While GSEs Play Footsy with MHI, Congressional Leadership Demands Answers on FHFA

October 19th, 2018 No comments

WhileGSEsPlayFootsyWithMHICongressionalLeadershipDemandsAnswersonFHFA

There are people in Washington, D.C. that are demonstrably fighting for the interests of small businesses and consumers.

 

As Daily Business News on MHProNews readers may recall, the hearings last month with the House Financial Services Committee and the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) were dominated by sexual allegations surrounding soon-to-leave director Mel Watt. 

 

Mel Watt – FHFA and MH Connected Hearing Today to Feature Sexual Misconduct Allegations

 

Chairman Jeb Hensarling (R-TX) has raised concerns over improper lobbying efforts by the GSEs, which was also previously reported to the industry by MHProNews.

 

“Waste, Fraud, and Abuse” – FHFA, GSE Federal Oversight Announcement

 

The Government Sponsored Enterprises (GSEs) of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac have both been giving money to the Manufactured Housing Institute, as has also been previously reported.  See but one example captured in the photo below from an MHI event.

 

2018-10-03_1018ManufacturedHousingInstituteHILogoCavcoFleetwoodPalmHarborFannieMaeFreddieMacLogoDailyBusinessNEwsMHProNEws

Marty Lavin advises, “Follow the Money” and “Pay More Attention to What People Do Than What They Say.” You decide if Lavin’s dictum applies to this case. The GSEs are praising manufactured home quality, but then created a special class of manufactured homes, with key MHI member input, that is aimed at funneling that lending, per informed sources. What about the rest of the manufactured housing industry?

 

ManufacturedHousingAssocRegulatoryReformMHARRMarkWeissDTSFHFA-GSEsGoingtoLargestBusinessesCorpAffiliatesDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

Collage by MHProNews.

The Manufactured Housing Association for Regulatory Reform (MHARR) has been pushing Congress, as well as the FHFA, for a full and proper implementation of their Duty to Serve requirements, including the use of robust use chattel financing.

 

MHARR Exposes GSES’ Failure On Chattel Financing Before Congress

 

Sources at MHI, and with the GSEs, tell MHProNews that no serious chattel lending is currently being done by either of the GSEs.  There are reasons to believe that closed door meetings between MHI, industry lenders, and the GSEs may have resulted in deals that kept them from entering the chattel market, in spite of the law.  See the related reports, below the by-line.

With that backdrop, here is the latest from Chairman Hensarling,

 FinancialServicesCommiteePressReleaseDailyBusinessNewsMHProNEws

 

Hensarling: Taxpayers Deserve Far Better

Financial Services Committee Jeb Hensarling (R-TX) released the following statement after the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) Office of Inspector General (OIG) issued a report on the potential management and performance challenges of 2019: 

“As was demonstrated at the Committee’s hearing on September 27 with FHFA Director Mel Watt and FHFA’s Inspector General, this country’s government-run housing finance system is broken. The FHFA has failed as both the conservator and the regulator of the Government Sponsored Enterprises.

The FHFA Inspector General’s report confirms this fact, and it is yet another indictment of our broken housing finance system. The report details ‘four serious management and performance challenges facing the Agency’ for 2019, running the gambit from repeated failure to exercise proper oversight as conservator to failure to adequately address ‘critical risk’ as the Enterprise’s supervisor.

Reform is needed now. Taxpayers deserve far better.”

###

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Confidential or on the record on-the-record comments and news tips, are welcomed. Please say NEWS TIPS in the subject line, to help us spot it in our volume of email. News tips can be sent with documents tot this linked email mailto:iReportMHNewsTips@mhmsm.com 

Hensarling is arguably correct.  But is there any reason to believe that MHI will do anything on this issue?  ICYMI, it need a refresher, see the related reports, linked below the byline. “We Provide, You Decide.” © ##   (News, analysis, and commentary.) (Related Reports are further below. Third-party images and content are provided under fair use guidelines.)


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

To see a sample of our emailed news update, click here. To sign up for the factory-built home industry’s #1 headline news, click here or the graphic above.
2) To pro-vide a News Tips and/or Commentary, click the link to the left. Please note if comments are on-or-off the record, thank you.

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

SoheylaKovachDailyBusinessNewsMHProNewsMHLivingNewsSubmitted by Soheyla Kovach to the Daily Business News for MHProNews.com. Soheyla is a managing member of LifeStyle Factory Homes, LLC, the parent company to MHProNews, and MHLivingNews.com.

Related Reports:

Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI), Women, #MeToo and Insider Information

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

Financing – Dramatic Shift – Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) Insider News Tips

Manufactured Housing Institute Shipment Data, FEMA, an Inside Look

October 18th, 2018 No comments

ManufacturedHousingInstituteLogoMHILogoShipmentReportAugust2018ModularManufacturedHomeMHProNews

jenny-hodge-manufactured-housing-institute-mhi-national-communities-council-ncc-posted-mhmarketing-sales-management-mhpronews.com

Jenny Hodge, MHI VP and National Communities Council (NCC)

On October 12, Jenny Hodge at the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) released the new HUD Code manufactured housing shipment data report. That report was sent to the Daily Business News on MHProNews for analysis and commentary.

Hodge is doing her job. As readers learned from yesterday’s “#Me Too” report, the reins are held tightly at the Manufactured Housing Institute offices. So, this analysis should not be construed as a critique of Hodge.

ICYMI, or need a refresher as to how this relates to a relatively mundane task of providing shipment numbers, yesterday’s inside look at the Arlington offices is linked below.

Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI), Women, #MeToo and Insider Information

Hodge began her report with the headline, “9,091 New HUD Code Homes Shipping in August 2018 First 9,000+ Month since 2007.”

It was a great month for production!” is a quote shared from sources which said that Hodge’s point in her headline was underscored by Pam Brillhart, Project Coordinator of Federal and State Programs, Institute for Building Technology and Safety (IBTS). IBTS gathers the data for the federal government, and provides them to HUD and others as a contracted service.

Rephrased, IBTS gathers data, and MHI is one of the sources that obtains that information from them for a fee.

Indeed, the industry has some cause to ‘celebrate’ rising shipment totals. But those totals need to be fully grasped, in the context to the reality that they are still at historically low levels. There were individual producers of pre-code mobile homes and post HUD Code manufactured homes that used to produce that many or more homes per year.

Hodge said that, “In August, 133 plants representing 37 corporations reported production data which is the same as July 2018.”

Compare that with the MHI production company chart history, shown below. It is 73 fewer HUD Code builders than started in 1990. That is fewer HUD Code builders than when Berkshire Hathaway entered manufactured housing in 2003.

Rephrased, manufactured housing was down on the mat. There were individuals who were long time veteran professionals in 2008-2010 that thought the manufactured housing industry was going to go the way of the “buggy whip.” They believed that industry was dying.

Thankfully, that proved wrong.  But the industry was brought to its knees, and that resulted in “consolidations.” Several of those who have sold to Clayton, for example, have told MHProNews that they didn’t get much for their businesses.  Isn’t that in keeping with Warren Buffett’s dictum that he loves a bargain?

Let’s look deeper.

Of the 9,091 homes shipped in August, there were no homes designated as FEMA units,” an apt point because FEMA artificially gooses the number. And as sources are telling MHProNews, there appears to be a move at FEMA away from the use of manufactured homes as much as possible, in favor of RVs or other temporary rental lodging options.

Manufactured Housing Shipments “The SAAR” 

In conventional as well as manufactured housing, there is a SAAR. Here is how Hodge’s report read.

The seasonally adjusted annual rate (SAAR) of shipments was 98,104 in August 2018, up 5.8% from the adjusted rate of 92,694 in July 2018. The SAAR corrects for normal seasonal variations and projects annual shipments based on the current monthly total.”

Put differently, there were MHI producers who last year expected to do some 107,000 (+/-) new HUD Code manufactured homes. Modular, tiny and other non-HUD Code factory built housing product would be in addition to those totals.

In August 2018, new manufactured home shipments increased 7.9% to 9,091 homes as compared to the 8,425 homes shipped in August 2017,” per MHI’s info from Hodge. “Total shipments for August 2018 are higher by 2,340 homes when compared to the prior month of July. Compared with August 2017, the trend is positive with shipments of single-section homes up by 6.0% and multi-section homes up by 9.5%. Total floors shipped in August 2018 increased 8.5% to 14,174 compared to August 2017.”

What Does it Really Mean?

Look at states like Michigan or Florida, where sizable numbers of units designed to be rentals are being shipped into manufactured home communities. Who else in manufactured housing trade publishing is telling the industry’s independents that factories see a warning sign in the data. What happens when shipments into communities slow down? Given that few new communities are being built, if zoning, finance, acceptance and other issues aren’t successfully addressed, in 3 to 5 years, the industry could plateau.

Winners and Losers, 5 Midwestern States, Manufactured Home Shipment Breakdown

Here is the HUD Code shipment data for August 2018, by state.

ManufacturedHousingHomesUnitsProductionByStateAug2019IBTSDailyBusinessNEwsMHProNews

Look at the state production data, to realize just how low the numbers can be.

ManufacturedHousingHomesUnitsProductionByStateAug2019IBTSDailyBusinessNEwsMHProNews

Then, recall that RVs are blowing manufactured housing away.

RVsshipmentsTrailedMH1998WinnebagoDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

Dick Jennison and Lesli Gooch were described as “control freaks” in yesterday’s report by MHI office insiders.

ManufacturedHomeMHShipments1990-2017DailybusinessNewsManufacturedHousingMHProNews

As in any office or operation, there are people at MHI that have formed personal relationships. There is chatter outside of the office, not just in it. Even ‘lower level’ staff can hear and share insights with the operation’s several ‘vice presidents.’

Figure1MobileManufacturedHomeSalesSHipmentsVsExistingingNewHouseSalesManufacturedHousingiinudstryDataMHProNews

There are a growing number of industry voices that believe that BH/CMH and MHI have by various action/inaction has kept manufactured home sales at historically low levels. Evidence? See Related Reports and videos, linked below, which quotes and cites BH, MHI, CMH, 21st Mortgage Corp, and other sources.

It is human nature. People who are “bullied” in an office find ways of dealing with that kind of harsh or “hostile work atmosphere.

One more reminder before closing this report. Sources said what industry readers should already know. The marching orders for MHI comes from the MHI Executive Committee. When one wonders why MHI spent years chasing after Preserving Access, and then abandoned half that goal in favor of the inclusion in S 2011, those marching orders come from the Executive Committee.

There are voices from within MHI’s membership that have asked if it isn’t a conflict of interest for Clayton Homes – which has site built housing and is part of Berkshire Hathaway conglomerate that has deep real estate interests – is exerting influence to keep production at low levels. See the related reports, further below.

Then ask yourself when RVs are roaring, and MH is snoring, why Richard ‘Dick’ Jennison was trying to tell the industry that it should grow slowly? Who does that benefit?

MHARR’s report on the same data was published earlier, and can be found at the link below.

Strong HUD Code Production Growth in August 2018

More in an upcoming report from inside Arlington, VA’s office at MHI in the hours and days ahead. “We Provide, You Decide.”  © ## (News, analysis, and commentary.)

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Related Reports:

For Independents, Independent-Minded MH Professionals, and Freedom-Loving Investors Only, Sunday Headline News Recap 10-7 to 10.14.2018

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

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

Reminder to Clayton Homes. Cavco Industries, and Skyline Champion Employees

Was Manufactured Housing Advocate Congressman Andy Barr Backstabbed?

October 15th, 2018 No comments

 CongressmanRepAndyBarrKY6-R-ManufacturedHousingAdvocateDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews600

Congressman Andy Barr has carried water for the Arlington, VA based Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) for several years.

 

MHI has justifiably called him a “champion” for the industry.

CongressmanAndyBarrManufacuredHousingActPassesHouseDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

The screen capture reveals just one of the bills he helped get done for MHI indicates, he’s delivered for them and for the industry.

Let these first two videos of Congressman Barr speak for themselves.  Wouldn’t it be great if every law maker felt this way?

 

MHLivingNews, spotlighted his efforts more than once on behalf of manufactured home owners, prospective buyers, and the industry itself. One such example is linked below.

 

Congressman Andy Barr Speaks in Favor of Manufactured Housing, While Industry Controversies Brew

 

MHI’s PAC understandably gave Congressman Barr campaign contributions. Rep. Barr got his part of the job done, time-after-time.

So where is their backstabbing involved?

 

Big League Politics

Barr’s KY 6 is considered a swing district for a possible Democratic takeover of the U.S. House of Representatives. Amy McGrath, a left-leaning Democrat and combat veteran is getting pools of money from outside of this district.

Bluntly, Democrats have targeted Barr for elimination. Kentucky Democrat Nathan Smith is not far away, sources suggest to MHProNews, working the system…

 

Giving to Both Sides…

As political savants know, there are those who give to both major party candidates in a race.  Sometimes those donations come directly.  But sometimes, they are oblique. That can be legal.

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The Drudge Report recently highlighted a story by the Hollywood Reporter, which said that 99 percent of Hollywood executives give their campaign contributions to Democrats. MHProNews spotlighted recently that 7 of the top 10 billionaires in the U.S. are Democratic supporters.  That includes Warren Buffett, who’s Berkshire Hathaway conglomerate owns Clayton Homes, 21st Mortgage, and numerous other companies involved in manufactured housing.

So, it must be noted that MHI is dominated by Warren Buffett led Berkshire Hathaway. Voices inside and outside of the industry have made that observation.  It’s no secret.  A Berkshire Hathaway executive, sometimes two, have sat on the MHI executive committee for years.

Berkshire’s chairman routinely supports progressive, left-leaning, Democratic candidates.

Buffett’s mega-billionaire buddies, along with second tier billionaires like George Soros and Tom Steyer,  are doing the same. ICYMI, see the related reports, further below for facts and figures on this specific point.  That isn’t conjecture, it is documented reality.

So why is Congressman Barr – who did what Buffett’s Clayton, 21st, MHI et al wanted – suddenly facing a massive amount of campaign contributions from leftist groups?

Before you answer that question for yourself, consider the related question.

Isn’t what is happening to Barr a warning to all who may think today, ‘but I’ve been loyal to:’

  • Clayton Homes,
  • 21st,
  • MHI, etc.

because as soon as your usefulness is deemed over, you too could be discarded like a wet rag?

That’s not mere conjecture.

Bear in mind, that MHProNews has heard directly from those that did business with Clayton for years. Some even did high volume for Clayton. But when they did something that Clayton didn’t like, those sources tell us that Clayton turned on them and targeted them for elimination.

 

President Trump on the Stump for Rep. Andy Barr

By contrast, President Donald J. Trump campaigned with and for Andy Barr.  As a business man, the president understands the concept of loyalty.  Note too, if you watch the entire video, that the president – who is painted by his opponents as vindictive and petty – praises Senator McConnell, who he has on several occasions crossed swords with.  Can you detect any of that in this video?

But let’s return our focus back to Congressman Barr.

I’ve met Congressman Andy Barr in person. He described first-hand experiences with pre-HUD Code mobile homes, as well as with post-HUD Code manufactured homes. He seems well informed on our industry’s issues. He struck me as a genuinely good, sincere man. This is precisely the type of person whom the industry needs backing manufactured housing, from both sides of the political aisle,” said L. A. “Tony’ Kovach, publisher of MHProNews.

LATonyKovachGoodBipartisanshipShouldalwaysBepredicatedBenefitallhonestindustrymembersnotslectfewquote

The comment above was said with respect to another recent topic, but relates to this issue too.

 

A Distinction 

There are plenty of rank and file Democrats who are nice people, well meaning, intelligent, caring, etc.

But there are examples of Democratic leaders who behave in a ‘use them and don’t care if you later abuse them’ fashion. That can happen in other organizations and political parties too.

But here is a case of Congressman Barr, who has fought successfully for manufactured housing industry interests in Washington, D.C..  If the indicators and sources are correct, then the purported powers-that-be behind MHI are treating Barr very badly.

Barr certainly merits the votes and support of those in KY6, and beyond.  Bear in mind too that it is only with

Other people resist, but this president gets results,” said Congressman Barr (KY-6-R) at a POTUS Donald J. Trump Rally on his behalf in Richmond, KY. In The video below, Barr begins to speak at about 24:20, you can watch him take the stage a few moments before that timeframe.

Barr said he knew that candidate Trump would become president when he said “My opponent has a slogan…’I’m with her’…I have a different slogan, “I’m with you!

 

Also, present Saturday night were Senate Majority Leader, Mitch McConnell (KY-R) and Senator Rand Paul (KY-R). The video below presented because it was part of the same event that Barr and POTUS Trump appeared at.  It is entitled by the source as “Rand Paul EXPLOSIVE Speech at Trump Rally in Richmond Kentucky – October 13, 2018.”


Was Manufactured Housing Advocate Congressman Andy Barr Backstabbed? 

In the backdrop of all that Barr did for manufactured housing and others, do you think you can trust the billionaires on the left? Or can you trust their non-profit tools, like MHI?

Why not ask Congressman Andy Barr that question?

But Barr may be too much of a gentleman to say that there are backstabbers at work in manufactured housing. Whatever he might say, the turn of the voters is upon us.

The midterms are three weeks out, early voting is underway in several states. Keep Andy Barr in mind, and others like him when you vote. It was mostly the GOP who passed S. 2155. It was entirely the GOP that passed The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act.  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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Financing – Dramatic Shift – Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) Insider News Tips

Danny Glover, Presidents Barack Obama & Donald Trump, Promises Kept, and Affordable Manufactured Housing

Truth, Trump, Tragedy, Triumph, Affordable Housing, and Manufactured Homes

Financing – Dramatic Shift – Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) Insider News Tips

October 13th, 2018 No comments

 

FinancingDramaticShiftManufacturedHousingInstituteInsiderNewsTipsDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

What follows dramatically changed the manufactured home industry.

 

It started with the SAFE Act. Two years later, it was Dodd-Frank. While Dodd-Frank was being passed into law, came first one, then another letter from 21st Mortgage Corp that was sent to the independents of manufactured housing.

In the wake of that trifecta came
• a steady wave of independent retail closures.
• Thousands of manufactured home communities had been losing occupancy for approaching a decade. Losing occupancy in communities resulted in relatively few outright failures, but far more that sold out to larger portfolio operations.
• All of the above resulted in a number of independent producers of HUD Code manufactured homes.
• U.S. Bank essentially shuttered a profitable manufactured home lending operation, citing low volume and regulatory risk.
• Communities that made loans on manufactured homes to buyers – like UMH Properties – likewise stopped making those deals, due to regularly risk.

All of the above created dramatic change for the industry. They are points few who understand the facts would deny. So, what are the insider insights?

Many.

This column will focus on one aspect today that has literally impacted the entire industry, without exception. Other reports from inside MHI, and later from inside Clayton Homes, and other organizations impacting MHVille will follow in the days ahead.

 

The View of Insiders at MHI

Recent reports on MHProNews have spurred a surge in news tips from manufactured home industry readers and insiders. These aren’t the fluff-talk that others may publish, but rather core issues that make or cost companies opportunities and money.

Among those numerous tips and comments?

Those that focused on inside information from and about the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI), and how they’ve handled the industry’s post-production and production agendas.

It should be noted, prior to proceeding to this manufactured home regulatory and financing focused report, that there have been some ‘fake news’ tips coming in too. MHProNews seeks evidence and corroboration on claims, not just a mere allegation.

Evidence and corroboration are important for our work. Why? Because some hate an operation, agency, and/or person so badly that they will make up something that sounds salacious, plausible or ‘juicy.’ But if it turns out to be untrue, has no corroboration, etc., then we at MHProNews don’t run it.

It should also be noted that those who provide news tips may hold different policy, political, or other views than MHProNews’ publishers.

For example, among the tips are voices that are pro-MHI, or pro-Clayton, etc. So why do pro-Clayton, 21st, MHI, etc. voices pick up a phone, or send messages, documents, and other forms of news tips, and insights?

Among the reasons we have been told by such sources is that they may like some person or industry organization, but nevertheless they too have concerns with specific things said, or done. Others raise the flag on some failure to act in a timely or proper fashion about an important issue.

Nathan Smith is among those who has said that the industry must admit its past failures. Richard ‘Dick’ Jennison – MHI’s President and CEO, has also generically admitted past failures. Both of those were captured on videos by MHProNews.

It’s facts, evidence, reason, and related we pursue at MHProNews. Insights and information are then shared with manufactured housing readers and investors through the lens of how it impacts the industry.

With that tee-up, let’s examine how a financing related issue dramatically changed the manufactured home industry, as told to MHProNews from voices in or associated with the Arlington, VA based Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI).

 

Inside MHI and Financing, and MH Consumers

The industry’s retailers and communities didn’t have to hear from Harvard’s Eric Belsky to know that credit – access to capital and financing – are essential to manufactured housing.

The industry’s consumer groups have also protested what then CFED’s Doug Ryan – who today is Prosperity Now’s point-man for manufactured housing issues – called Clayton’s monopoly on manufactured home lending. Ryan said that in an article published by American Banker.

What MHI insiders have stressed to the Daily Business News on MHProNews is that the consumer groups offered during the Obama Administration to compromise with MHI.

They [MHI] are now trying to sell S 2155 as an accomplishment, as a win by MHI,’ said one source. “But MHI specifically rejected that same deal with consumer groups about 4 years ago.

 

“Stomping” and MHI’s Dick Jennison

A caller told our publisher that when L.A. ‘Tony’ Kovach sends a message to MHI’s team members, asking for a comment, or sharing some information, those messages are supposed to be forwarded by staff to MHI’s President, Richard ‘Dick’ Jennison.

He will come stomping out of his office” in anger said the caller. Another source at MHI said that “Dick [Jennison] gets red-faced when he gets upset” – including, but not limited to, those messages.

MHI will work with alternative bloggers and trade media competitors, in an effort to try to counter news coverage by MHProNews, or some report by the Manufactured Housing Association for Regulatory Reform, explained a person privy to such details.

Without specifically using those words, these sources were saying that MHI strives to ‘control the narrative’ as much as they can.

MHI team members have traditionally been a mix of both Democrats and Republicans, explained one. They don’t necessarily do that formally, but that has been the modus operandi (MO – method of operation) for years, explained that source, who believed it was a good association practice.

MHI felt the heat rising from the grass roots of the industry about financing and Dodd-Frank, explained one. They felt they had to “do something” to get what looked like a win on the heavy regulations coming out of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB).

But they could have had that same win with the MLO rule years ago, simply by making that agreement with the consumer groups. It would have required no legislation in Congress, because it would have been done via the CFPB. That would have “saved millions of lobbying [and overhead] dollars in the process.

For anyone who’s business was negatively impacted by those years of regulatory overreach during the Obama era, they are potent admissions that imply what were avoidable burdens and costs for thousands of industry companies.

 

Attempted Choke Hold on Information, “Scandal…”

Dick, wants to hold things very close to the vest.” There are circles within MHI staff, and circles within MHI members, per several insider sources.

The division boards and staff may make recommendations, but it’s the MHI Executive Committee that has the power.

The Executive Committee tasked Dick with carefully managing the budget. He’s done that to their satisfaction,” said a known voice.

Meanwhile, an MHI VP has told MHProNews that Jennison “didn’t really understand, or much care about, the industry itself.” Additional details on that will be part of an upcoming related report.

Dick’s job [at MHI] isn’t lobbying per se. It’s to manage the people, and [to] manage the budget.”

Reacting to those MHI insider comments, one industry professional and longtime association member said that it’s not “the millions wasted on lobbying Dodd-Frank” that bothers himas much as the billions in lost business or [business] valuations caused by MHI’s failure to compromise with consumer groups on Dodd-Frank. That’s the scandal.”

Some of the professionals they essentially put out of business were longtime industry friends of mine,” said a retailer. “I pray that Republicans hold the Congress, and that in the next two years the Feds expand their investigation into the market manipulation of manufactured housing that’s taken place. Buffett’s control of the industry through crony Democratic capitalism is an issue that could unite the left and the right. It’s cost taxpayers, homeowners, housing seekers, and small businesses like myself tremendously.”

An MHI member producer said that wiping out thousands of the independents in retail “hobbled every non-vertical producer” in the industry.

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Another interesting observation was from one caller, who described them-self as not being crazy about MHARR because of style. But that person admitted that what they, MHProNews and others have often forced the much larger Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) to pivot or change course.

The insights above confirmed prior sources, some of those are linked in the ‘related reports’ that are found further below.

The bottom line on this issue is that capital and restrictions on financing that dramatically changed the industry could have in many cases been avoided and/or mitigated. As one put it, had MHI settled the high-cost lending and MLO rule issues 4 years ago, they could have been focused on exclusionary zoning or other larger issues instead.

This is part one of a planned multiple part series that will include tips and insights from industry insiders.

Motivations?

One of those noted above said that they wanted to get some things off their chest, and another that said they wanted more transparency, so that the industry can deal with the real issues, heal, and advance to its true potential.  A third said that no other resource is as read as MHProNews, and this gave them the anonymity they needed to keep their job, and still share useful insights.  Other motivations were mentioned by professionals involved in the above, but stating them could reveal the source.

More from inside MHI, Berkshire owned brands, and other organizations connected to the manufactured housing industry in the days ahead. “We Provide, You Decide.” (C) ## (News, analysis, and commentary.)

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Related Reports:

MHI Lender Shakes Up DTS and MLO Rule Discussions

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

Duty To Serve, “Complete Waste of Time” per Tim Williams, CEO/21st Mortgage; POTUS Trump, Warren Buffett Insight$

 

 

 

 

 

Has the Manufactured Housing Institute Accused Former MHI Chairman Nathan Smith of Federal Law Violations?

October 1st, 2018 Comments off

 

HasManufacturedHousingInstituteLOGOAccusedFormerMHIChairmanNathanSmithPhotoSSKCommunitiesYouGotItHomesLogoViolatingFederalLawDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

Earlier this month, the Manufactured Housing Institute produced a handout to their members. One of those was provided to the Daily Business News on MHProNews.

 

It came with a question.

 

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Has former MHI Chairman, Nathan Smith violated federal law?  Isn’t that what MHI’s FAQ #6 implies, given SSK’s past and more recent marketing practices?”

It is an interesting topic.

This isn’t the first time that SSK Communities has been accused by others in manufactured housing for allegedly violating federal advertising, and possibly other laws.  As the Daily Business News noted last week, SSK Communities has had several legal woes.

Nathan Smith’s SSK Communities also has an “F” rating by the Better Business Bureau (BBB).

 

2018-09-26_0939BBBSSKCommunitiesLogoNathanSmithPhotoManufacturedHomeLivingNewsThirdPartyLogo

You can see a Nathan Smith, SSK Communities related report, by clicking this link here.

Further below, you can see a marketing item from Augusta Homes Sales, LLC, YouGotItHomes® from their Facebook page.  This is one of a number of such questioned marketing items over the years that has been brought to MHProNews’ attention by industry readers.

MHI’s new FAQ guide asks this question, among others, “Can retailers and community owners advertise monthly payment amounts and interest rates in their effort to sell a manufactured home?”

Here’s how MHI answered that question.

ANSWER:  “No. Pub. L. 115-174 § 107 provides added flexibility when discussing the mortgage lending process with customers during the sale of a manufactured home, including when referring customers to lenders to discuss financing options. It does not give authority to advertise credit terms.

While the law provides that a retailer or community owner cannot directly negotiate loan terms with a consumer or lender (including rates, fees, and other costs), advertising is generally not considered negotiating; it is an invitation to negotiate. However, Regulation Z, which implements TILA, still prohibits advertising hypothetical terms, such as a down payment, an interest rate, or a monthly payment. Advertising requirements also vary by state and advertising credit and/or loan terms may require registration and/or licensure under the SAFE Act. 

Retailers and community owners can make general statements about the availability of credit in advertisements, as long as they do not use specific credit terms or reference a particular lender’s available credit terms. They can also discuss hypothetical terms in person with customers when explaining the mortgage lending process. However, for additional information regarding state-specific advertising requirements, MHI recommends contacting qualified legal counsel.”

NathanSmithYouGotITHomesAugustaHomesLLCViolatedFederalLawUnderTILTARegZDailyBusinessNewsMHProNEws

FAQ$6ManufacturedHousingInstitutelogoMHIlogoRetailersCommunitiesAdvertiseMonthlyPaymentAmountstoSellManufacturedHomeDailyBusinessNewsMHProNEws

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Was Richard Cordray – who led the CFPB until leaving the federal agency to run as a Democrat for Governor of Ohio – too busy to look into concerns about Nathan Smith, a prominent Democratic supporter of former President Barack Obama?  ICYMI, you can later read these 2 related reports, linked immediately and further below.

Nathan Smith, SSK Communities, From Mobile Home Resident to Manufactured Home Communities Owner, & Manufactured Housing Institute Leader

MHProNews is hereby spotlighting and raising anew such concerns, noting that Nathan Smith, his companies, and MHI may have an explanation or defense, and that they are ‘innocent until proven guilty‘ by law. Smith, MHI, and the CFPB will be asked to comment about this matter.

Stay tuned for a planned follow up on this report, based upon their response(s).

This should also serve as reminder to others who may or may not be using similarly questionable or legally risky advertising messages.

As a final point, MHI’s handout busily patted their own back hard several times for their role in the passage of S 2155.  To understand the background and facts about that topic, please the related reports, linked further below. That’s this evening’s manufactured housing “Industry News, Tips, and Views Pros Can Use,” © where “We Provide, You Decide.” ## (News, analysis, and commentary.)

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SoheylaKovachDailyBusinessNewsMHProNewsMHLivingNewsSubmitted by Soheyla Kovach to the Daily Business News for MHProNews.com. Soheyla is a managing member of LifeStyle Factory Homes, LLC, the parent company to MHProNews, and MHLivingNews.com.

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Report: Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) Follows Prior MHProNews Lead

September 20th, 2018 Comments off

 

FollowTheLeaderManufacturedHousingInstituteLogoMHILogoPivotsFollowsMHProNewsLeadGraphic

A state association member forwarded the following news tip to MHProNews for commentary and analysis, which reflects an interesting pivot by the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI).

 

The Manufactured Housing Consensus Committee (MHCC), met last week, as the Daily Business News recently reported. Per HUD, the MHCC is a federal advisory committee.

More specifically, under the Manufactured Housing Improvement Act of 2000 (MHIA), HUD is charged with gaining approval from the MHCC for various changes and updates to regulations.

According to MHI to various state associations, the “…MHCC approved language for submission to the DOE in response to its Notice of Data Availability and request for information for an energy conservation standard for manufactured homes.” The Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) “has argued HUD should have exclusive jurisdiction over all manufactured housing construction standards, including standards for energy efficiency.”

MHI arguably should have publicly given credit to MHProNews for promoting that position to HUD in published comments submitted by this publication to regulators earlier this year. MHI sources tell MHProNews that their leadership routinely reviews ‘everything that you (MHProNews) do.’

Whatever prompted their pivot – perhaps ongoing publishing pressure of the logic from the Manufactured Housing Association for Regulatory Reform, MHProNews, and/or other industry voices – MHI did make that move last week.

During the meeting, MHI encouraged the MHCC to ensure that the DOE does not move forward with any rulemaking without consultation and guidance from HUD and the MHCC.”

Additionally, MHI expressed concerns to the MHCC about a previous DOE proposed rule for energy conservation that would have created excessive compliance and cost burdens on manufactured housing that outweighed any consumer benefit,” per their emailed statement.

That last line is a textbook definition of chutzpah and hypocrisy, as MHI is on record for previously encouraged the DOE energy rule. One of several possible documentary examples is captured in the item below.

The MHI leadership should know by now that they will be fact-checked on such misleading-at-best, or arguably false, claims.  See the prior report, referenced below, that further documents how MHI previously supported costly energy standards before they finally relented to their current, more moderate, position.

Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) Shifts on DOE Regulatory Rule, Report, Analysis

Per MHI, “The MHCC also approved language stating that “any proposed energy standard must not conflict with HUD standards, which are preemptive” and that the DOE “must work with HUD to develop a clear compliance path to avoid overlapping or conflicting regulations and ensure feasibility, cost effectiveness and clarity.”

MHI leaders, better late than never in following MHARR and MHProNews’ lead?

Apparently missing from MHI’s comments to their mailing list is a related topic to this forwarded tip.  That is the pressure on DOE from the Sierra Club lawsuit. See that under related reports, further below. Bottom line?  They still have plenty of work to do. “We Provide, You Decide.”  © ## (News, analysis, and commentary.)

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SoheylaKovachDailyBusinessNewsMHProNewsMHLivingNewsSubmitted by Soheyla Kovach to the Daily Business News for MHProNews.com. Soheyla is a managing member of LifeStyle Factory Homes, LLC, the parent company to MHProNews, and MHLivingNews.com.

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HUD, Urban Institute Webcast on Housing Vouchers Thursday Sept 20th – Manufactured Housing Opportunities?

September 19th, 2018 Comments off

 HUDlogoUrbanInstituteLogoWebcastHousingVouchersThursdaySept20thManufacturedHousingOpportunitiesDailyBUsinessNewsMHProNews

On July 29, 2016, the Housing Opportunity through Modernization Act of 2016, (H.R. 3700) was signed into law,” with Wisconsin Housing Alliance (WHA) reminds readers. “This gives the more than 2 million families that have a HUD Section 8 voucher the added flexibility of using the voucher to pay for the full annual cost of purchasing a manufactured home.”

 

It’s a move that many supported, inside and outside of the manufactured housing industry.  But so far, there’s been little appreciable change that can be specifically pin-pointed to this new law, as the HUD Code manufactured housing shipment chart below reflects.

ManufacturedHomeMHShipments1990-2017DailybusinessNewsManufacturedHousingMHProNews

There are plenty of opportunities in manufactured housing, one of them being this HUD Voucher program, at least on paper. But as the shipment diagram above reflects, since the program was passed, there is no appreciable change that can be pin-pointed to this program. It remains to be seen if the Thursday webcast will address this issue, which if properly implemented in a fair and balanced fashion, could be good for HUD, consumers, and the manufactured home industry.

The law also makes it possible to use housing vouchers for site fees in manufactured home land lease communities. See a document from HUD on that topic, linked here as a download.

HUD Secretary Ben Carson, M.D., and the Urban Institute did research aimed to increase the impact of those housing vouchers.  A webcast will be held tomorrow, see the details per the HUD news release to MHProNews.

After the release HUD release below will be some closing points, and related report links.

 

HUDGovPressNewsMediaDailyBusinessNewsMHPronEws

THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 20, 2018

2:00 – 4:00 P.M. EDT

 

HUD AND URBAN INSTITUTE TO PRESENT STUDY ON LANDLORD ACCEPTANCE OF HOUSING VOUCHERS

Secretary Carson launches major landlord outreach campaign

At 2 p.m. EDT on Thursday, September 20th, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) and the Urban Institute will present the findings of a new study examining landlord treatment of renters participating in the nation’s largest housing subsidy program, the Housing Choice Voucher Program. HUD’s Pilot Study of Landlord Acceptance in the Housing Choice Voucher Program examines landlord acceptance of housing vouchers in five cities:  Philadelphia; Los Angeles; Fort Worth; Newark, New Jersey; and Washington, DC.

HUD Secretary Ben Carson recently formed a Department-wide Landlord Task Force and is launching a nationwide outreach campaign to hear directly from landlords and property managers.  Scheduled listening forums are intended to reveal how HUD might make the voucher program more accessible and acceptable, specifically in higher opportunity neighborhoods where landlord participation is lowest.  Read more.

This presentation will be offered via webcast at https://www.hud.gov/webcasts/schedule

 

WHO:            Members of HUD’s Department-wide Landlord Task Force

                        Urban Institute research team

 

WHAT:          Landlord acceptance of housing voucher holders

 

WHEN:          Thursday, September 20, 2018

                        2:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m. EDT

 

HOW:             Watch HUD’s webcast at https://www.hud.gov/webcasts/schedule

###

WHASection8VouchersCanNowBeusedOnManufacturedHomesDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

MHProNews readers are reminded that the Urban Institute (UI) has ties to Warren Buffett, and Berkshire Hathaway.

 

The Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI)’s SVP Lesli Gooch recently referred to Brian Montgomery as “their” candidate. These may or may not be relevant for the webcast tomorrow and what follows.  But those related reports are linked further below.

 

MHProNews plans to monitor this program, to see if it is tilted toward what former MHI award winner Marty Lavin has called “the big boys” that often seem to get special treatment at MHI.  “We Provide, You Decide.” © ## (News, analysis, and commentary.)

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SoheylaKovachDailyBusinessNewsMHProNewsMHLivingNewsSubmitted by Soheyla Kovach to the Daily Business News for MHProNews.com. Soheyla is a managing member of LifeStyle Factory Homes, LLC, the parent company to MHProNews, and MHLivingNews.com.

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Electrifying Price Hikes Threatened; Manufactured Housing DOE Energy Rule Controversies Heat Up

September 18th, 2018 Comments off

 

ElectrifiyingPriceHikesThreatenedManufacturedHOusingDOEEnergyRuleCOntroversiesHeatUpDailyBusienssNewsMHproNews

There could be several different reports on this Department of Energy (DOE) manufactured housing energy rule.  As of yesterday evening, over 1,000 comments had already been posted publicly on the federal regulatory comments site. That indicates several things – including, but not limited to – the array of voices that are pressuring the DOE to act in ways that could dramatically impact manufactured housing affordability.

 

Translated, prices could spike if this goes into effect.  That in turn would logically hurt the lowest cost home buyers most of all.

Among the haystack of comments are those from the Manufactured Housing Association for Regulatory Reform (MHARR), which opposes the measure, and has for years.  Their comments letter is linked as a download further below.  It is introduced by pull-quotes from an introductory release to the Daily Business News on MHProNews.  Or, readers can click the below, and read their full introductory commentary as well as the complete comments letter from the MHARR website.

 

MHARR to DOE: Only Three Choices for MH Energy Rule – Abandon, Complete Start-Over, Or Face Legal Action

 

“Only Three Choices…”

“…In its comments, MHARR commends DOE for re-examining and re-evaluating the substance, framework and approach of its earlier June 2016 proposed rule for manufactured housing energy standards, but points out that the “negotiated rulemaking” proceeding which led to the 2016 proposed rule – which was rejectedby the Office of Management and Budget’s Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs (OIRA) – and still forms at least part of the underpinning for the 2018 NODA, was so fundamentally tainted and fatally defective, that no legitimate rule and no legitimate standard can ever be salvaged from that process,” said the MHARR introductory statement.

Accordingly, MHARR’s comments tell DOE that it effectively has only three choices in this matter:

(1) abandon the subject of manufactured housing energy regulation altogether;

(2) re-start the manufactured housing energy standards rulemaking process completely and in full cooperation with HUD, so as to eliminate any lingering taint, bias, or prejudice from the illegitimate and arguably scandalous “negotiated rulemaking” process, as well as the impacts and effects of underlying policies that have since beenrejected by the Trump Administration, including the so-called “Paris Climate Accord” and the Obama Administration’s dubious “Social Cost of Carbon” construct; or

(3) face potential legal action if it proceeds with any energy standards arising out of, or derived from the illegitimate and discredited DOE “negotiated rulemaking” process.

MHARR obliquely slammed the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI), using the following phrasing.

Indeed, DOE’s sham “negotiated rulemaking” process – contrived by DOE behind closed doors with energy special interests and some within the industry itself (as shown by documents disclosed pursuant to MHARR Freedom of Information Act requests) after MHARR had successfully resisted prior DOE rulemaking activity – should never have gone forward in the first place and cannot now be somehow legitimized, after the fact, by DOE’s “alternative” proposals, which themselves continue to be based on data, information and presumptions developed during the course of that “negotiated rulemaking” process.”

MHProNews has previously documented the flip-flop that MHI engaged in, when after months or pressure from MHARR, the SBA, a university study, and MHProNews – among others – the Berkshire Hathaway tilted trade group in Arlington, VA finally relented.  See that linked report with associated documentation, linked below.

Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) Shifts on DOE Regulatory Rule, Report, Analysis

 

As MHARR, MHProNews, the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB),  and others have noted for years, the costs associated with the rule would ‘price out’ hundreds of thousands of potential buyers of HUD Code manufactured homes.

The Sierra Club and others are putting pressure on the DOE to put heavier energy standards on HUD Code manufactured homes as a requirement.  That would cause serious spikes in pricing.  It could thus could stall all new HUD Code manufactured home sales, particularly for ‘entry level’ priced product.

So, this could shape up to be a serious battle in Washington that would impact retailers, communities, producers, lenders, suppliers and others in the industry, if the measures were to be implanted. To learn more, click the MHARR regulatory comments letter, linked here, or see the full MHARR introductory release and their comments letter, at the link to MHARR further above.  “We Provide, You Decide.” © ## (News, analysis, and commentary.)

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SoheylaKovachDailyBusinessNewsMHProNewsMHLivingNewsSubmitted by Soheyla Kovach to the Daily Business News for MHProNews.com. Soheyla is a managing member of LifeStyle Factory Homes, LLC, the parent company to MHProNews, and MHLivingNews.com.

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