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Warren Buffett’s Annual Report to Berkshire Hathaway Shareholders, Clayton Homes and Manufactured Housing

February 26th, 2018 Comments off

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When examining an industry or an issue, such as the manufactured housing and regulations that impact an industry, common sense dictates that one spend time looking at the proverbial elephants in the room.

In manufactured housing, one elephant in the room is arguably Warren Buffett, Berkshire Hathaway and companies such as Clayton Homes, 21st Mortgage and Vanderbilt Mortgage and Finance.

Using their own annual report, Buffett’s copyrighted document says Clayton has about 49 percent of the industry’s production.

Other elephants in the room?  Financing (capital) and regulations must surely be among them.

Consider this.

  • The Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI),
  • the Manufactured Housing Association for Regulatory Reform (MHARR),
  • state associations,
  • and thousands of industry professionals and investors would – if prodded – likely say that federal, state and local regulations are an important impacts that influence their businesses.
  • Most if not all would all likely admit the importance that capital and financing plays in the industry.

The timing of the Berkshire Hathaway annual report is noteworthy.  It comes at about the same times as the deadline for public comments that the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) has made for the top-down-review of the manufactured housing program it regulates. Those comments to HUD are due at 11:59 PM tonight, 2.26.2018.

Federal Manufactured Housing Program Review Comments Due Next Week, 2.26.2018

The entire Buffett/Berkshire annual letter and report are found as a download at the end of this report, provided by the Daily Business News under fair use guidelines.

Let’s look at some notable quotes from the annual letter and report.  Those facts will be followed by analysis of the quotes and data.

 

Notable Facts and Quotes

Keep in mind that while Clayton Homes is in the housing business, Berkshire lists it under financial services. From the Berkshire Hathaway Inc. 2017 annual report, page 13 (hereafter, just annual report), copyright 2018 © by Warren E. Buffett, page K21:

 

Finance and Financial Products

Berkshire’s finance and financial products activities include an integrated manufactured housing and finance business, transportation equipment leasing and furniture leasing. Berkshire’s finance and financial products businesses employ approximately 25,600 people in the aggregate. Information concerning these activities follows.”

Clayton Homes

Clayton Homes, Inc. (“Clayton”), headquartered near Knoxville, Tennessee, is a vertically integrated housing company utilizing manufactured, modular and site built methods. Clayton’s homes are marketed in 48 states through a network of over 2,000 retailers, including 353 company-owned home centers and 118 subdivisions. Home finance and insurance products are offered through its subsidiaries primarily to purchasers of manufactured and modular homes.

In 2015, Clayton acquired its first site builder and has since added four additional site builders. Clayton plans to continue to seek acquisitions that fit its business model. Clayton delivered approximately 49,000 homes in 2017 at various price points. Clayton competes based on price, service, delivery capabilities and product performance and considers the ability to make financing available to retail purchasers a factor affecting the market acceptance of its products.

Clayton’s financing programs support company-owned home centers and select independent retailers. Proprietary loan underwriting guidelines have been developed and include ability to repay calculations, including debt to income limits, consideration of residual income and credit score requirements, which are considered in evaluating loan applicants. Currently, approximately 70% of the loan originations are home-only loans and the remaining 30% have land as additional collateral. The average down payment is approximately 15%, which may be from cash, trade or land equity. Certain loan types require an independent third-party valuation; additionally, if land is involved in the transaction it generally is independently appraised in order to establish the value of the land only or the home and the land as a package. Originated loans are at fixed rates and for fixed terms. Loans outstanding include non-government originations, bulk purchases of contracts and notes from banks and other lenders. Clayton also provides inventory financing to certain independent retailers and community operators and services housing contracts and notes that were not purchased or originated. The bulk contract purchases and servicing arrangements may relate to the portfolios of other lenders or finance companies, governmental agencies, or other entities that purchase and hold housing contracts and notes. Clayton also acts as an agent on physical damage insurance policies, homebuyer protection plan policies and other programs.”

From annual report, page K-49:

 

Manufactured housing and finance

Clayton Homes’ revenues were $5.0 billion in 2017, an increase of $780 million (18%) compared to 2016. The revenues increase was primarily due to higher home sales, attributable to an increase in overall unit sales (9%) and higher average prices. The increase in average prices was primarily due to sales mix changes, which reflected increases in site built home sales, a relatively new business for Clayton. Site built homes include higher land content and unit prices tend to be higher, although gross sales margin rates are typically lower than manufactured homes. Interest and financial services revenues increased 2% in 2017 compared to 2016.

Pre-tax earnings increased $21 million (2.8%) in 2017 compared to 2016. Pre-tax earnings in 2017 from manufacturing, retailing and site built activities increased, while earnings from finance activities declined slightly from 2016. Earnings in 2017 also included a gain from a legal settlement, offset by increased employee healthcare, technology, marketing and other expenses. A significant portion of Clayton Homes’ earnings are generated from lending activities, which in recent years benefitted from relatively low delinquency rates and loan losses and from low average interest rates on borrowings. As of December 31, 2017, Clayton Homes’ installment loan portfolio was approximately $13.7 billion.

Revenues increased $654 million (18%) in 2016 compared to 2015, attributable to a 30% increase in revenues from home sales, primarily due to a 25% increase in units sold and product mix changes. Interest and other financial service income increased 1.8% from 2015. Pre-tax earnings increased $38 million (5.4%) compared to 2015. Earnings benefitted from increased home sales and improved manufacturing and retailing operating margins, partly offset by lower earnings from lending and financial services and increased insurance losses.”

 

More Notable Quotes

From the annual report, page 5.

Let’s move now to bolt-on acquisitions. Some of these were small transactions that I will not detail. Here is an account, however, of a few larger purchases whose closings stretched between late 2016 and early 2018.

Clayton Homes acquired two builders of conventional homes during 2017, a move that more than doubled our presence in a field we entered only three years ago. With these additions – Oakwood Homes in Colorado and Harris Doyle in Birmingham – I expect our 2018 site built volume will exceed $1 billion.

Clayton’s emphasis, nonetheless, remains manufactured homes, both their construction and their financing. In 2017 Clayton sold 19,168 units through its own retail operation and wholesaled another 26,706 units to independent retailers. All told, Clayton accounted for 49% of the manufactured-home market last year.

That industry-leading share – about three times what our nearest competitor did – is a far cry from the 13% Clayton achieved in 2003, the year it joined Berkshire. Both Clayton Homes and PFJ are based in Knoxville, where the Clayton and Haslam families have long been friends. Kevin Clayton’s comments to the Haslams about the advantages of a Berkshire affiliation, and his admiring comments about the Haslam family to me, helped cement the PFJ deal.”

From the annual report, page 13.

A final lesson from our bet: Stick with big, “easy” decisions and eschew activity.”

 

Quotes and Insights, According to Rupert Hargreaves, GuruFocus on Nasdaq 3.28.2017

Rupert Hargreaves in a column entitled “Warren Buffett and the Importance of Moats,” wrote: “Buffett himself only invests in such businesses [those with moats], but the problem is he’s never really set out exactly what he’s looking for in the best moats.”

Hargraves compiled this list of Buffett quotes on moats.

But all the time, if you’ve got a wonderful castle, there are people out there who are going to try and attack it and take it away from you. And I want a castle that I can understand, but I want a castle with a moat around it.” – Warren Buffett.

From the 2000 Berkshire annual meeting:

So we think in terms of that moat and the ability to keep its width and its impossibility of being crossed as the primary criterion of a great business. And we tell our managers we want the moat widened every year. That doesn’t necessarily mean the profit will be more this year than it was last year because it won’t be sometimes. However, if the moat is widened every year, the business will do very well. When we see a moat that’s tenuous in any way – it’s just too risky. We don’t know how to evaluate that. And, therefore, we leave it alone. We think that all of our businesses – or virtually all of our businesses — have pretty darned good moats.” – Warren Buffett.

“…I don’t want a business that’s easy for competitors. I want a business with a moat around it with a very valuable castle in the middle. And then I want the duke who’s in charge of that castle to be honest and hard-working and able. And then I want a big moat around the castle, and that moat can be various things.” – Warren Buffett.  

“…Most people will assume the service is fairly identical among companies, or close enough, so they’re going to do it on cost, so I gotta be the low-cost producer. That’s my moat. To the extent my costs get further lower than the other guy, I’ve thrown a couple of sharks into the moat.”  – Warren Buffett. 

Note, these quotes may reference other products and services.  But industry readers and researchers must keep in mind that these are principles that Buffett himself and his partner, Vice-Chairman Charlie Munger, have applied to all of their investments.

“…Things are all the time changing that moat in one direction or another. Ten years from now you can see the difference. Our managers of the businesses we run, I’ve got one message to them, which is to widen the moat. And we want to throw crocodiles and sharks and everything else, gators, I guess, into the moat to keep away competitors. And that comes about through service, it comes about through quality of product, it comes about through cost, it comes about sometimes through patents, it comes about through real estate location.” – Warren Buffett. 

 

Other Sources and Quotes on Buffett about Competition and the Moat

WarrenBuffett.com says, In business, I look for economic castles protected by unbreachable moats.” – Warren Buffett.

In Charlie Munger on Moats First of the Four Essential Filters, “

1.    A business with a moat,

2.    A business that can be understood by the investor,

3.    Management in place with integrity and talent, and

4.    A business that can be bought at an attractive price that gives an attractive margin of safety.” – Charlie Munger, Berkshire Vice-Chairman.

Stocks of companies selling commodity-like products should come with a warning label: ‘Competition may prove hazardous to human wealth.’” – Warren Buffett, per Sure Dividend. 

There are more such quotes about Buffett and the Berkshire philosophy, but perhaps among the most relevant for the industry are those from Kevin Clayton in the video linked in the report below.

Kevin Clayton Interview-Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway, Clayton Homes CEO

 

Analysis and Commentary 

Against that backdrop, lets return to this year’s letter.

Starting bottom of page 8, top of page 9 of the annual letter.

I have told you several times about HomeServices, our growing real estate brokerage operation. Berkshire backed into this business in 2000 when we acquired a majority interest in MidAmerican Energy (now named Berkshire Hathaway Energy).  MidAmerican’s activities were then largely in the electric utility field, and I originally paid little attention to HomeServices.

But, year-by-year, the company added brokers and, by the end of 2016, HomeServices was the second-largest brokerage operation in the country – still ranking, though, far behind the leader, Realogy.

In 2017, however, HomeServices’ growth exploded. We acquired the industry’s third-largest operator, Long and Foster; number 12, Houlihan Lawrence; and Gloria Nilson. With those purchases we added 12,300 agents, raising our total to 40,950. HomeServices is now close to leading the country in home sales, having participated (including our three acquisitions pro-forma) in $127 billion of “sides” during 2017.

To explain that term, there are two “sides” to every transaction; if we represent both buyer and seller, the dollar value of the transaction is counted twice.

Despite its recent acquisitions, HomeServices is on track to do only about 3% of the country’s homebrokerage business in 2018. That leaves 97% to go. Given sensible prices, we will keep adding brokers in this most fundamental of businesses.”

  • The 97 percent statement about housing, isn’t that arguably a clearly monopolistic phrase? 
  • Or Buffett’s comments about Clayton growing from 13% in 2003 to 49% by 2017 – in the light of the quotes above and linked, isn’t it also part of a monopolistic pattern? 

For those who compete with Buffett, you must think years ahead, because Buffett and his unit managers do. 

It is worth recalling that Fleetwood was once a powerful presence in manufactured home production and retail – duking it out in the late 1990s, and early 2000s – with Champion for the top spot. But after the “smoking gun” incident, as Kevin Clayton noted in his own words in the video in the report linked further above, Fleetwood’s retail was acquired by Clayton. 

Killing Off 100s of Independent Manufactured Home Retailers, Production Companies – Tim Williams/21st Mortgage “Smoking Gun” Document 2

No doubt, in fitting with the Berkshire way, at a bargain price…

We Provide, You Decide.”  ©

Berkshire Chairman Warren Buffett’s annual letter to shareholders, and the Berkshire Hathaway annual report, are linked here as a download. ## (News, analysis, and commentary.)

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

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

 

 

Sunday Morning Weekly Recap Manufactured Housing Industry News July 30th to August 6th, 2017

August 6th, 2017 Comments off

WeekOfJuly302017toAug52017DailyBusinessNewsMHProNewsOur new August issue will go live tonight, Aug 6th.  Until then, our  theme for the month: July Justice 2017 – MH Billionaires, Millionaires, and You  Our featured articles will be available on the MHProNews.com home page. Our May theme will be available mid-week this week.

 To see the line-up of over 2-dozen featured articles for this month, along with the headline commentary, please click the link above.

Manufactured, modular and prefabricated home professionals know that how a home got to its location should not define a person or their dwelling.

What the Daily Business News spotlights day-by-day are the tragedies, triumphs and struggles for acceptance of the obvious solution for millions for the growing affordable housing crisis in the U.S. and beyond.

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When you read the lineup for the month found on the home page, you can reflect on another motto as you chart your own professional path ahead: “We Provide, You Decide.”  ©

 

What’s New On MHLivingNews

“Po-Dunk” Performer Kid Rock, Eyes Senate Run, Makes Manufactured Home Living Hip

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August 5th, 2017

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Ross Kinzler, top left. Sophia, top center and Right (credit, Phys) Kinzler credit, MHProNews.

August 4th, 2017

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August 3rd, 2017

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Image credits are as shown, text and collage credits, MHProNews.com.

August 2nd, 2017

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Actively retired minister and factory built housing advocate, Donald Tye Jr. explains the complex web that can cause addiction. Loss of hope is one factor. In a prior report, linked here, Tye explained that public housing – an entitlement – often yields addiction. Ownership vs. renting or living in “projects” leads to integrity, a view similar to those of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

August 1st, 2017

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July 31st, 2017

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http://www.mhmarketingsalesmanagement.com/blogs/industryvoices/uncertainty-us-the-only-known/

 

July 30th, 2017

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

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MHARR’s Mark Weiss takes on HUD: Production, Paperwork and Contractor Make-Work

October 24th, 2016 Comments off
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Image credits: Teleread, MHARR and HUD logos, all used here under fair use guidelines.

All of this change – without the benefit of actual rulemaking (as required by the 2000 law) — was touted by HUD (and others), at the time, as a money-saver. But it has not worked out that way, – M. Mark Weiss

A news and analysis from M. Mark Weiss, President and CEO of the Manufactured Housing Association for Regulatory Reform (MHARR), digs into the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) manufactured housing program enforcement system.

First published in the October 2016 edition of The Journal, Weiss turns to data to show that the HUD system is overly dependent on paid contractors.

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M. Mark Weiss.

MHARR, its fair to say, has been a consistent critic of a HUD manufactured housing program enforcement system that is overly dependent on paid contractors, and a contracting system that – in addition to being fundamentally non-competitive over its entire history — improperly allows contractors to perform inherently governmental functions and, worst of all, incentivizes contractors to find fault with the homes, plants and offices that they ‘audit,’” said Weiss.

While all this is bad enough, HUD, since 2010, has made matters far worse with its unilateral program of expanded in-plant regulation, which changed the entire focus and nature of that regulation.

From the very start, MHARR (alone) went on record objecting to this change as not only being in violation of the Manufactured Housing Improvement Act of 2000, but also a make-work sop for the entrenched program monitoring contractor. And now there is specific data — ironically from the contractor itself — which confirms the fundamental “make-work” character of this program,” MHARR’s CEO said.

Weiss points to years of HUD related data.

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Credit: HUD.

…let’s review the known – and indisputable – facts,” said Weiss.

Between 1998 and 2015, the production of HUD Code manufactured homes fell from 374,143 to 70,544 homes per year, a contraction of approximately 81 percent. Records of HUD’s contract spending before 2005 are not readily available, though, so we’ll focus on the period between 2005 and 2015. 

During that ten-year period, HUD Code production fell from 146,881 homes in 2005, to – again – 70,544 homes in 2015, or a contraction of just under 52 percent.  Now, one would think, during an extended period of declining production covering multiple contract terms, that the amounts budgeted (and paid) for contract “monitoring” services (as defined in the 2000 reform law) would have declined, roughly in proportion to the decline in production (adjusted for inflation).

Weiss says, “But that did not happen.  Budget justifications submitted by HUD to Congress each year between Fiscal Year (FY) 2005 and FY 2017, show that budgeted payments to the program-monitoring contractor remained effectively constant until FY 2010.

Weiss continued to point to the data cited in his article.

In 2008, with HUD Code production in free fall, the HUD program (through its then-Administrator) approached the Manufactured Housing Consensus Committee (MHCC) with proposed changes to the in-plant regulatory system, including, among other things, the role of Primary Inspection Agencies (PIAs), the nature of the “inspections” and corresponding reports provided by PIAs, and the ‘monitoring’ of those activities by HUD, though the program’s one – and only – ‘monitoring’ contractor.  

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As well-informed manfactured housing professionals know, part of the purpose of the HUD Code for manufactured homes is to establish a system that is performance-based and saves consumers money, without sacrificing on energy or safety features. To see the video still shown above, click here.

After fully debating this series of disconnected and disjointed HUD proposals, the Committee ultimately determined that it could not reach the consensus required by the 2000 reform law.  And the matter should have ended there, but did not,” Weiss said.

Contemporaneously with the de facto rejection of these proposals by the MHCC, the HUD program, without further consultation with the MHCC, began to develop and — by March 2010 – implement, the paper blizzard of “Standard Operating Procedures,” “guidelines,” “field guidance,” flow charts and other pseudo-regulatory mandates that changed the fundamental focus of the in-plant regulatory system to the review (and modification) of manufacturer ‘quality control’ systems.

Weiss cites that with expanded in-plant regulation came multiple new reports and paperwork by manufacturers, PIA’s, and the monitoring contractor, which then turned into multiple reviews of those reports, multiple layers of meetings and the use of “consultants” between manufacturers.

All of this change – without the benefit of actual rulemaking (as required by the 2000 law) — was touted by HUD (and others), at the time, as a money-saver,” said Weiss.

But it has not worked out that way.

Weiss points out that once the program of expanded in-plant regulation went into effect (in 2010) budgeted funding for the contractor – despite declining production, numbers of manufacturers, numbers of manufacturing plants and numbers of retailer locations – began to increase, and has increased at an accelerating rate ever since.

Naturally, in order to keep pace with these rising contract expenditures at a time of substantially-reduced industry production, and with a new $25 million five-year contract awarded to the contractor in 2013, HUD – in 2014 – raised the certification label fee for every new manufactured home by a record-setting 156 percent, claiming, incredulously, that despite significant, long-term industry production declines, the magnitude of its ‘responsibilities’ remained ‘unchanged,’” said Weiss.

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Video report with prior HUD Code manufactured home program administrator, Bill Matchneer, JD, offers powerful insights separate from, but related to this issue, to see the video interview, click here or the image above.

While it has thus been obvious all along that this expanded in-plant regulation has been all about maintaining and increasing contractor billings, revenues and de facto authority in the face of a prolonged industry downturn, there is now direct evidence showing that this is little more than a “make-work” enterprise for the contractor, as MHARR has maintained.

Weiss cites that rather than a legitimate and bona fide inspection system, the HUD program of expanded in-plant regulation is a “paper chase,” with high, and rising, costs in return for little or no corresponding consumer benefits.

In MHARR’s view, with a new administration taking office in Washington in 2017, the industry and consumers have an opportunity to seek real and necessary change in the HUD enforcement system to reduce unnecessary costs and regulatory burdens through fundamental contract reform, while preserving consumer protection and the bedrock quality and affordability of today’s manufactured housing,” said Weiss. ##

(Editor’s Note: for more commentary from Weiss on HUD from earlier this year, click here.)

(Image credits are as shown above.)

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RC Williams, for Daily Business News, MHProNews.

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

 

Memo asserts HUD Code Manufactured Housing Program “Seriously Off Track”

November 14th, 2014 Comments off

hud-logo=credit-posted-daily-business-news-mhpronews-com-In the aftermath of a largely favorable report on Manufactured Housing (MH) by the Government Accounting Office (GAO), and a more problematic one in its wake from the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) on MH lending, MHARR’s current president released a memo outlining 7 ares of concern regarding the HUD Code Manufactured Housing Program.

In the memo, MHARR President Danny Ghorbani, wrote in part, quoting:

Listed below are the seven items addressed in this communication with the program Administrator.  It should be noted that two of these (i.e., items 6 and 7) involve critical issues where the Administrator has committed to taking the proper course of action under the 2000 reform law, which MHARR fully supports, encourages – and thanks the Administrator:   

1. Unwarranted and discriminatory restrictions on the use of manufactured homes

2. Unnecessary and unnecessarily costly expanded in-plant regulation

3. Unnecessary and unnecessarily costly monthly IPIA Subpart I record inspections

4. Misuse of additional label fee revenues contrary to congressional intent

5. Unjustified retroactive Subpart I treatment for attached garages

6. Necessary regulatory reform for the separation of manufactured homes and RVs

7. Costly and discriminatory Department of Energy standards for HUD Code homes   

All of this expanded regulatory activity indicates that the HUD program remains – and continues to progress — seriously “off-track,” veering away from the main focus and objectives of the 2000 reform law and necessitating an intensified effort to roll-back such activities.”

The entire press release and related downloadable letter to Pam Danner, JD, HUD’s Manufactured Housing Program administrator are linked here. ##

(Image credits: HUD Logo, graphic)

HUD’s Pam Danner draws robust welcome during address at FMHA annual event

October 10th, 2014 Comments off

cyndi-king-l-pam-danner-r-hud-manufactured-housing-program-address-packed-fmha-annual-meeting=daily-business-news-mhpronews-2 (1)Florida Manufactured Housing Association (FMHA) President Cyndi King introduced the federal Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Manufactured Housing Program director – Pam Beck Danner, JD – to the FMHA’s packed 2014 annual meeting in Orlando on 10.8.2014.

Danner described the busy 6 months she’s had at HUD, which included no “honeymoon” time for the MH program’s new director.

Danner immediately dug in, with over 100 languishing issues reported by the GAO’s recent report, to start moving them ahead.

The Manufactured Housing Consensus Committee (MHCC) is back on the calendar. Discussions are underway on how HUD can support DOE, FHA and other federal programs in their MH efforts.

The HUD Code Manufactured Housing’s program’s label fee was raised, an unavoidable move, Danner explained, due to the program budget and the law.

Danner said they took HUD MH program staff on a tour of a manufactured home land lease community in VA, to give them a better sense of the modern MHIndustry.

Danner said she has an open door, encourages positive engagement by her staff with the industry, and wants manufactured housing to be as broadly included in other HUD and federal program planning as possible.

Attendees welcomed Danner and her comments with warm, genuine applause. MHI, MHARR and FMHA are among the MH associations which have spoken highly about Danner’s strong industry background, understanding of the issues and thus suitability for her new role at HUD.

Attendance at the upbeat event – which included awards, industry education, mixers and meals – was reportedly up over 20% from 2013. ##

(King top left, Danner top right – Photo Credit: MHProNews)

Inside the CFPB and the HUD Code Manufactured Housing Program

August 18th, 2014 Comments off

hud-label-cfbp-logo-posted-daily-business-news-mhpronews-comCertainly reports from MHI or MHARR carried here on MHProNews bring you news and information about the CFPB as well as HUD’s manufactured housing program. But nothing is quite like the insights from someone who has recently worked in both offices. That is the true “inside perspective” brought found in our exclusive interview,A Second Cup of Coffee with…Bill Matchneer.

Matchneer – who has been doing consulting work for MHI – has also responded to a recent MHARR press release sent from Danny Ghorbani’s email address; see Bill’s reply here. ##

(Images: HUD Code home label for MH and CFPB logo)

 

HUD MH Head Announces new AO for the Manufactured Housing Consensus Committee

June 19th, 2014 Comments off

Pamela Danner, the Department of Housing and Urban Development’s (HUD) Administrator for the Office of Manufactured Housing, released a letter announcing Home Innovation Research Labs, Inc. as the new Administrating Organization (AO) for the Manufactured Housing Consensus Committee (MHCC). According to the Manufactured Housing Association for Regulatory Reform (MHARR), the new AO is the research and laboratory affiliate of the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB), a trade group representing the site-built housing industry. MHProNews understands the previous AO was the National Fire Protection Association, which expressed an interest in installing smoke detectors in manufactured homes. ##

(Image credit: homeinnovation.com)

Tim Williams, 21st Mortgage, elected Vice-Chair during Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) Summer Meeting

June 11th, 2014 Comments off

tim-williams-CEO-President-21st-mortgage-corporation-daily-business-news-manufactured-housing-mhpronews-The 2014 Summer Meeting for the  Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) concluded yesterday with Tim Williams, CEO of 21st Mortgage, was elected as Vice-Chair of the industry’s largest national trade association.  Williams, a respected industry icon, was unopposed.

97 industry leaders, plus MHI staff, friends and family attended the June 8-10 event at the Alexander Hotel in Indianapolis, IN.  “On the heels of Congress and Expo, and with a number of state association meetings (taking place), we are very pleased with the number of attendees.” said MHI President, Dick Jennison, to MHProNews.

Pam Danner, HUD’s new manufactured housing program director and Bill Matchneer, who recently retired from the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB), we’re among the featured guests.  Danner assured attendees that she would listen to the industry, resolve back logged issues and seek to elevate understanding and use of programs manufactured housing at HUD.

Bill Matchneer, who is consulting for MHI on appraisal related issues,  urged members to get the story of MH home  owners who lost financing due to CFPB regs to have their stories told to regulators. See Matchneer’s related guest column here.

Educational, business meetings and networking mixers were all part of the agenda. ##

(Photo Credit: MHProNews)

Meeting set for Manufactured Housing Consensus Committee

June 5th, 2014 Comments off

A teleconference meeting of the Manufactured Housing Consensus Committee (MHCC), which is open to the public, will be held June 26, 2014 from 1:00 PM to 4:00 PM. The number is 888 741 3106, Conference ID:54144750. As MHProNews understands this will be the first MHCC meeting led by the new administrator of the Department of Housing and Urban Development’s Manufactured Housing Program, Pamela Beck Danner. The agenda tentatively includes an update on manufactured housing programs, minutes of the Oct. 2012 meeting, recommendations pending before the MHCC, and the review of items forwarded from HUD dealing with southern pine and ventilation of manufactured homes. ##

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

Congressional Committee asks for GAO Probe of HUD MH Program

December 1st, 2011 Comments off

MHProNews has received a communique from the Manufactured Housing Association for Regulatory Reform (MHARR) noting a copy of a letter on the stationery of Rep. Spencer Bacchus (R-Ala.), Chairman of the House of Representatives Financial Services Committee, and Rep. Barney Frank (D-Mass.), Ranking Member of the Committee. The letter is addressed to Comptroller General Gene L. Dodaro of the Government Accountability Office (GAO). It is signed by Rep. Judy Biggert (R-IL), Chairman of the Subcommittee on Insurance, Housing and Community Opportunity, and Rep. Bacchus. The letter asks Mr. Dodaro to examine the Housing and Urban Development’s (HUD) regulation of the manufactured housing program, specifically the implementation of the Manufactured Housing Improvement Act (MHIA) of 2000 designed to establish standards for construction of MH, and how that has affected the overall MH industry. The MHIA also set the boundaries for federal preemption and allocated resources to deal with MH issues. The letter also asks the agency to examine the effect the Manufactured Housing Consensus Committee (MHCC) has had on revisions to HUD’s guidance of the MH program and what authority the MHCC has in advising HUD. Noting the inspection fee HUD collects from manufacturers, the letter asks the GAO to examine how the fees are collected and administered, if it is being done according to law, and what effect the fees have on production.

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