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Do Looming Shareholders Suits Against Cavco Industries Foreshadow Problems for More Manufactured Home Industry Publicly Traded Firms?

February 20th, 2019 No comments

 

DoLoomingShareholdersSuitsAgainstCavcoIndustriesForeshadowWoesForMoreManufacturedHOmeIndustryPublicFirms

The headline question, according to a manufactured home industry attorney familiar with the issues, says what attorneys often do. “It depends.”

 

Under the headline, “RM LAW Announces Class Action Lawsuit Against Cavco Industries, Inc.” one reads the following.

RM LAW, P.C. is a national shareholder litigation firm.  RM LAW, P.C. is devoted to protecting the interests of individual and institutional investors in shareholder actions in state and federal courts nationwide,” said part of a February 6, 2019 press release to the Daily Business News on MHProNews.

There is a growing number of such shareholders law firms circling Cavco Industries (NASDAQ:CVCO).

But does the risk to industry operations stop there?

To tee up this nuanced topic, let’s first note as a disclosure that we are not attorneys. The Daily Business News on MHProNews aren’t giving legal advice to current or potential members of the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI).

But we do get input from attorneys and legal sources, before we tackle tricky topics, such as this one, that can spell perhaps unanticipated risk to Cavco Industries (CVCO) and others.

We editorially believe there is value to warning the industry’s professionals about possibly looming threats. It is worth noting that it’s connections to Arlington, VA based MHI that arguably spells the risk.  Why MHI?  That will become clear, below. So, with those disclaimers noted, let’s dive in.

Next, let’s look at what Angela Gonzales of the Phoenix Business Journal said in a recent report on legal fees and increasing insurance by Cavco to cover the growing risks of litigation.  Gonzales’ narrative are found between the —- lines below

—–

SEC investigation spurs Phoenix homebuilder to pay $15.3M for directors, officers insurance

Ongoing investigation cost company more than $1M in legal expenses during recent quarter

·         Homebuilder experiences softening in home order rates beyond typical seasonal slowdown usually expected during winter months.

 

In the midst of a U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission investigation, Phoenix-based Cavco Industries Inc. has paid $15.3 million for extra directors and officers liability insurance coverage.

·         While company officials of the manufactured homes producer won’t say exactly how much that policy will cover, they did say the extra coverage will be needed in light of the ongoing independent investigation, which cost the company $1.3 million in legal and other expenses during the third fiscal quarter ended Dec. 29, 2018.

·         Since receiving an SEC subpoena in November, company officials said they have cooperated with the SEC’s investigation into the trading of stock of another public company. At the time, Joseph Stegmayer stepped down as chairman, president and CEO after an internal investigation found he violated company policy related to securities trading activity.

·         Daniel Urness, who served as Cavco’s executive vice president and chief financial officer since 2015, stepped up to serve as president and acting CEO.

·         In a Feb. 5 earnings call with analysts, Urness said the company received an additional document subpoena request from the SEC related to the original securities trading activities.

·         “We are fully cooperating with the SEC and work to resolve this matter,” Urness told analysts.

·         After reviewing directors and officers liability coverage, Urness said it was determined that additional coverage was prudent.

·         “We recognize it’s costly,” he told analysts. “Clearly, this is because it does cover certain risks associated with the SEC issue.”

·         For the three months ended Dec. 29, Cavco reported $13.4 million in net income on $233.7 million in net revenue, down from $21.4 million in net income on $$221.4 million in net revenue during the same period in 2017, according to filings with the SEC.

·         However, net income was up to $48.7 million on $721.6 million for the nine months ended Dec. 29, from $39.4 million on $628.7 million in net revenue during the first nine months of 2017.

—–

Now, circle back to a prior report on Cavco, and see part of their latest public disclosure.  Here’s what the Motley Fool said was the official transcript from their most recent results call, starting with Cavco’s Mark Fusler’s comments.

“Mark Fusler — Director of Financial Reporting

Thank you. And before we begin, please be advised that comments made during this conference call by management will contain forward-looking statements under the provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, including statements of expectations or assumptions about Cavco’s financial and operational performance, revenues, earnings per share, cash flow or use, cost savings and operational efficiencies. 

Some factors that may affect the company’s results include, but are not limited to the risk of litigation or regulatory action arising from the subpoenas we received from the SEC, the risk of potential litigation or regulatory action arising from the SEC related internal investigation and its findings, potential reputational damage that Cavco may suffer as a result of matters under investigation, adverse industry condition, our involvement in vertically integrated lines of business, including manufactured housing, consumer finance, commercial finance and insurance, market forces and housing demand fluctuations, our business and operations being concentrated in certain geographical region, the loss of any of our executive officers, federal government shutdown, and extensive regulation affecting manufactured housing…”

Those disclosures by Cavco are meant in part to comply with transparency requirements, but also to reduce their risk of potential litigation.

 

The Risk of Litigation, and MHI Member Companies

Facts are what they are.  It only requires some surfing of this site to recognize this next fact.

Well in advance of the numerous pending Cavco suits, MHProNews was alone among industry publishers signaling risks associated with MHI connected firms.

With Cavco’s aim of reducing the risk of litigation in mind, let’s go to some specific pull quotes from their statements, above. You’ll begin to see why the facts about MHVille that outsiders are routinely unaware of could spell even more risk for that Phoenix, AZ based firm or others, as we work through Cavco’s (CVCO) own list.

  • potential litigation or regulatory action arising from the SEC related internal investigation and its findings,” – a contact at the SEC would not continue or deny to MHProNews that they were researching possible market collusion or antitrust related issues with respect to Cavco and Stegmayer.
  • potential reputational damage that Cavco may suffer as a result of matters under investigation…” – Where is there a disclaimer about risks that may come as a result of association with the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI)? Or that Joe Stegmayer is still the Chairman of MHI, and is reportedly saying things that would normally be the kind of statements made by a president, not the lesser role he is officially holding? More on that later purported risk is further below.
  • adverse industry condition,” – Given that Joe Stegmayer is MHI’s Chair, and MHI claims to ‘represent all segments of factory-built housing,’ how much risk is tied to those details? Is MHI truly doing their jobs well? If not, why not? There are legal sources that note that while not commonplace, perhaps, there is nevertheless examples of trade groups getting sucked into antitrust and other legal imbroglios.
  • our involvement in vertically integrated lines of business…” – if vertical integration is a risk, why isn’t it also risk to be working with potentially vulnerable independents? Which are more vulnerable, independents or vertically owned businesses units? Where is that disclaimer?
  • market forces and housing demand fluctuations…” – while technically accurate, this begs the question that the Urban Institute and others asked but arguably failed to properly answer. Why are so few manufactured homes being sold during an affordable housing crisis? Given that Cavco’s Stegmayer remains MHI’s Chairman, does that increase their exposure? How can he and his firm – or others in MHI – escape the notion that the industry is underperforming, and that they are in some measure to blame? See the comments from the MHI rival Manufactured Housing Association for Regulatory Reform (MHARR), linked further below.
  • the loss of any of our executive officers, federal government shutdown, and extensive regulation affecting manufactured housing…” – this last one is precisely an eyebrow raising case of chasing a gnat that had near zero risk in the first place, yet was inexplicably raised by MHI EVP Lesli Gooch. Why would Stegmayer presumably okay a statement by Gooch, that had been on no ones radar before, and with good reasons not to make something out of nothing? To better understand that, please see the linked report via the text/image box below.

 

Wall Street, Lesli Gooch – Manufactured Housing Institute EVP – Penetrating Scotsman Guide Interview Analysis

 

Could Other MHI Member Companies Could be Facing Risks?

Cavco, in a recently updated IR document, corrected an estimated figure that MHI has not yet corrected. Relevant data and facts are part of how investors make decisions. Perhaps sparked by periodic MHProNews reports on that topic of inaccuracies voiced by MHI, Cavco apparently reacted. If Cavco corrected an inaccurate data-point, why not MHI? When investors or prospective investors are told that the data comes from MHI – which is credibly accused of botching or misleading facts, figures, and more – does that create liabilities?

 

Absent sufficient disclosures, it might, say legal minds.

 

A Secret Society…?

MHI members who sit on a division board have voiced concerns with MHProNews that it is run like a “secret society,” with a select few ‘in the Know,’ and all others kept at arms length.

The pushback by Jeff Bezos vs. the National Enquirer opens a door that MHIndustry pros should ponder.  If Bezos says that their purported threat amounted to illegal extortion – how much more does that fear-based threat that stories like the one below inspires in MHVille?  These are wrinkles that industry outsiders are unlikely to grasp without sufficient research.

 

“Mobile Home Militia,” Retail/Production Sources, Sound Alarm Against Clayton Homes, CMH, New “Anti-Competitive Practices” Allegation

 

Note that these and other concerns are connected with MHI insiders.

 

ManufacturedHousingInstituteLogoMHIBoardOfDirectorsLogoMHIExecutiveCommittee

Outsiders looking in may not fully grasp the bold and nuanced issues that impact the industry, and thus publicly traded firms too. Few if any MHI members are arguably giving the proper disclosures to their current or potential shareholders.

 

So, there are several reasons to be concerned that MHI staff – presumably under the board of directors tacit or active approval – has behaved in ways contrary to the interests of the majority of the industry.

If so, and member firms that are publicly traded aren’t disclosing those concerns, isn’t that far greater risk than running out of HUD labels caused by a partial federal shutdown that is now  nowhere on the horizon?

There is arguably no way that the shareholders plaintiffs attorneys circling Cavco could fully grasp the full story without expert insights. The fact that some of those lawfirms circling Cavco have been in touch with our publisher, and/or have signed up for our emailed news updates, reflects the growing reality that the truth about MHVille is coming out in stages. That’s both risk and opportunity in disguise, for those willing to connect the dots

MHProNews plans a related report and will monitor this developing case at the Akron Mobile Home Park in Akron, NY. While the Manufactured Housing Institute holds their winter fund-raiser -err, winter meeting – in Austin, TX, welcome to the ongoing drama that is buffeting MHVille in 2019. “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.

 

Related Reports:

You can click on the image/text boxes to learn more about that topic.

Cavco Industries Woes Mount, Official, Unofficial Insights, Broader Manufactured Home Industry Impacts?

State-Level Data Provided for Total Manufactured Home Shipments in 5 Key States for 2018

 

“Appalled” said David McCarthy – HUD Cites “Substandard Conditions,” But How Many Multi-Million Opportunities for Investors and Manufactured Housing Pro?

 

“If Everyone is Going Left, Look Right” – ELS Chairman Sam Zell’s Mantra, Manufactured Homes, and Contemporary Controversies

Clayton Retail GM Earns Big Bucks, Insider Insights for Manufactured Housing

HUD Code Manufactured Home Production Decline Persists – Time For Action Not Excuses

“The Illusion of Motion Versus Real-World Challenges”

Independent National Manufactured Housing Post-Production Association Takes Major Step

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Manufactured Housing Institute February 2019 Monthly Economic Report, with 2018 Revelations

February 19th, 2019 No comments

 

ManufacturedHousingInstituteLogoMonthlyEconomicReportFeb20192018YearEndDataDailyBusinessNewsMHProNewsBlank

The data that follows is according to a February 11, 2019 report from the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) delivered by email to their members.

 

The Arlington, VA based trade group issued it with their normal copyright notice, but as their attorneys know, there are specific circumstances when copyrighted materials can lawfully be republished for analysis, commentary, fact-checks and/or other valid reasons and circumstances that apply for news media.  That’s why savvy readers know that CNN often shows news clips and logos from Fox News, or Fox News may show clips from MSNBC or CNN, etc.  There are reasons why there are no lawsuits pending between news outlets for that, and it is explored in more depth in the report linked in the text/image box below.

 

Lanham Act, Monopolistic Housing Institute, err, Manufactured Housing Institute, Legal Bullies, and You

 

The meat of the MHI release to their members is as shown below.

 

ManufacturedHousingInstituteLogoMonthlyEconomicReportDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

5,984 New HUD Code Homes Shipped in December

———————————————————–

In December 2018, new manufactured home shipments decreased 17.7% to 5,984 homes as compared to the 7,269 homes shipped in December 2017. Total shipments for December 2018 were 1,706 homes less than November. Compared with December 2017, the trend is mixed with shipments of single-section homes down by 35.8% and multi-section homes up by 5.8%. Total shipments for the full year of 2018 are 96,540 which is a 3.9% increase over 2017. Total floors shipped in December 2018 decreased 10.5% to 9,398 compared to December 2017.

Of the 5,984 homes shipped in December, there were 56 homes designated as FEMA units shipped to Alabama. For calendar 2018, there were a total of 1,329 FEMA units shipped.

The seasonally adjusted annual rate (SAAR) of shipments was 84,530 in December 2018, down 7.7% from the adjusted rate of 91,626 in November 2018. The SAAR corrects for normal seasonal variations and projects annual shipments based on the current monthly total.

In December, 133 plants representing 35 corporations reported production data which is one more plant than in November 2018.

— End of quoted portion of MHI release. —

 

Fact-Checks and Analysis

There are valid explanations why the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) and the Manufactured Housing Association for Regulatory Reform (MHARR) have slight variations in their official new home shipment totals, both of which presumably come from Institute for Building Technology and Safety (IBTS) acting on behalf of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD).  That difference could be summarized under how each handle “destination pending” designated homes in their respective reports.  It’s normally a negligible tally, but worthy of note solely for the clarity that it isn’t necessarily a factual misstatement.

As a point of reference, MHARR reported the following for 2017 and 2018 new home production totals.

  • 2017 – 92,902 homes
  • 2018 – 96,555 homes

 

So MHI shows 15 less units out of 96,555 total built in 2018, a tiny fraction of a percent. In fairness to MHI, with the proper disclosures, it’s a non-issue, save to those in MHVille who practice puffery on their blog.

Using MHARR’s data, there was only 3,653 difference between the total production of 2017 and 2018. Given that the National Association of Realtors  said in 2018 that some 8.3 million more housing units are needed in the U.S., the news of any drop or failure to meet even modest expectations ought to furrow brows of discerning manufactured housing professionals and investors.

The Daily Business News on MHProNews will break the above down, as follows.

  • For calendar 2018, there were a total of 1,329 FEMA units shipped.”
  • Total shipments for the full year of 2018 are 96,540 which is a 3.9% increase over 2017.”
  • Total floors shipped in December 2018 decreased 10.5% to 9,398 compared to December 2017.”

A) Absent from the above is the fact that earlier in the year, MHI and/or member firms were projecting 107,000 new manufactured homes produced for the year. The totals are thus more than 10,000 new manufactured home units short of that already meager MHI target.

B) Off that 3,653 units difference, 1329 were FEMA MHUs, which means that retail or residential use growth was actually only 2,324.

C) What is utterly lacking in this or other recent MHI communications is why – during an affordable housing crisis – there are declining new home shipment trends?

 

ThroughNov2018FREDHousingStartsfordecadesDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

 

D) What is equally lacking are explanations for what has contributed to this trend, that MHI has either ignored and/or arguably has facilitated. That has purportedly occurred with either the expressed or implied support of Knoxville, TN metro-based Clayton Homes and their related lending units.

 

DeceptiveTradePracticesManufacturedHousingInstituteDailyBusinessNewsMHproNews

E) Finally, as MHI was beating-the-bushes for year-end renewals of their members, they spent significant sums on a video from which the stills below were compiled. They clearly stated – and thus wanted industry professionals to believe – that there was ‘momentum’ – when in fact they of all sources in MHVille knew what the trends were about to reveal. Is that a deceptive trade practice?  A lack of truth-in-advertising by MHI?  The decline of shipments year-over-year at the close of 2018 is an issue that can’t be ignored, save by those who believe that they benefit from ignoring the troubling facts.

 

ManufacturedHousingInstituteMHINewClassofHomesDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

Momentum?  Really?  Still from MHI Video, logos added by MHProNews.

ManufacturedHousingInstitutelogoMHILogoMHIVideoStillsMillionsofViewsDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

This is arguably part of the “Illusion of Motion” that was described at this link here.

 

See the related reports for more details.  That follows the byline, consulting and business development offers, and notices. That’s this morning’s manufactured Home “Industry News Tips and Views Pros Can Use,” © where We Provide, You Decide.” © ## (News, analysis, and commentary.)

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To report a news tip, click the image above or send an email to iReportMHNewsTips@mhmsm.com – To help us spot your message in our volume of email, please put the words NEWS TIP in the subject line.

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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:

You can click on the image/text boxes to learn more about that topic.

Democrats, Republicans Agree – “Manufactured Homes Can Play a Vital Role in Easing” the Affordable Housing Shortage

Bonuses, Bonuses! Manufactured Housing Struggles During Affordable Housing Crisis, While Top MHI Staffers Get Bonuses

News Tip, Document – Is Clayton Homes Engaged in False Down Payments? Deceptive Trade Practices?

 

MHI CEO Dick Jennison’s Pledge – 500,000 New Manufactured Home Shipments

 

Positive, Uplifting Third-Party Reports Favor Modern Manufactured Housing, So What’s Going Wrong?

 

HUD Code Manufactured Home Production Decline Persists – Time For Action Not Excuses

 

“The Illusion of Motion Versus Real-World Challenges”

 

 

 

 

“If Everyone is Going Left, Look Right” – ELS Chairman Sam Zell’s Mantra, Manufactured Homes, and Contemporary Controversies

February 17th, 2019 No comments

 

IfEveryoneIsGoingLeftLookRightELSChairmanSamZellMantraManufacturedHomesContemporaryControversiesDailyBusinessNewsMHProNEws

Billionaire Warren Buffett speaks about “value investing,” plus only investing in concepts that can be easily understood, and make sense.  Buffett believes in well managed firms.  Those concepts from the 3rd richest man on earth are proven to work just fine.  Others methods he deploys are arguably less savory.

 

Billionaire Sam Zell and Buffett differ on numerous items in their public political stances. But Zell and Buffett both agree that manufactured homes make good sense.  As Zell has said about investing, “If everyone is going left, look right.”

Zell’s Equity LifeStyle Properties (ELS) continues to do deals in manufactured homes and communities. Ditto Buffett, Sun Communities, Legacy Housing, and numerous others. Their reasons are similar to this extent.  Each firm believes in the long-term opportunities in affordable housing.  Nothing is more proven in that sector than manufactured homes.

That said, much of the public and investment world just doesn’t realize that, not yet anyway.  Thus the ongoing value of Zell’s mantra.

 

Suits and Opportunities

It is commonplace for sizable operations to have one or more attorneys – ‘suits’ – on staff or on retainer.  With affordable housing in high demand, why haven’t more industry pros recognized Zell’s lesson of being contrarian and “looking right” – doing something different than others are doing – as an obvious part of the solution for accelerating sustainable growth for MHVille?

There are independent operations in manufactured housing that tell MHProNews that most of the business that they do is with 21st Mortgage Corp. That’s not a surprise, given the fact that Berkshire Hathaway owned 21st and Vanderbilt Mortgage are the top two lenders in the industry.  But what that factoid suggests ought to be a wakeup call to the industry’s other lenders and all of the industry’s musing professionals.  It’s this. Conventional housing routinely gets better credit score buyers than manufactured housing attracts.  Why is that?  Perhaps more to the point, why is it that some manufactured home pros can attract better quality credit or cash buyers, while others don’t?

Every week, on MHProNews there are any number of reports that shine a light on the opportunities and obstacles that face the HUD Code segment of the factory-built home industry. But perhaps the greatest obstacles are arguably from within, and it was MHI member Frank Rolfe of RV Horizons who said that on more than one on-the-record statement.

 

Investors Asking the Right Questions

We get periodic contacts from a range of investors who often ask the right questions.  Some, after seeing the modern HUD Code manufactured home product first-hand are blown away by the value proposition. Which again begs the question, why isn’t our industry doing far better than it is?  That’s a question that outsiders looking in – pondering investing – are asking us on a regular basis.

It is also a question that every operation already in manufactured housing should look in the mirror and ask itself.

Certainly, there are those who’ve flocked after smaller to mid-sized manufactured home communities (MHCs), with the ‘big boys’ often going after larger communities or portfolios whenever possible. That’s fine, it works. But that’s a fairly limited box, especially when compared to the growing multifamily housing sector.

A community executive, seeing our recent report on Michigan – linked further below – speculated that some of the slowdown there was due to the higher cost of installations kicking in there.  Our publisher and industry consultant L. A. ‘Tony’ Kovach replied, but isn’t the spread between conventional housing and manufactured homes – even with a costlier installation – still huge?  The community executive replied in the affirmative, and acknowledged the point Tony made.

So the question stands, given the affordable housing crisis, what gives? Why are total sales nationally or in the various states so relatively modest?

Ask the Manufactured Housing Association for Regulatory Reform (MHARR) that question.  Why isn’t the industry doing better than it is, given the quality and value of today’s HUD Code homes?  MHARR – the Washington, D.C. based trade group – has answered that quite specifically.  They point to the obvious failures of the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) in their post-production advocacy.  They also note the game by MHI that MHARR has colorfully dubbed the “Illusion of Motion.

Ask independents privately if they trust Clayton Homes (e.g.: CMH) or 21st Mortgage, and they may point you to Heath Jenkin’s experience, what happened to hundreds of retailers, or other experiences like those in recent reports, further below.

The fact that MHProNews has routinely asked Arlington, VA based MHI or their Omaha-Knoxville masters to explain or clarify those cases, and they have not yet done so is puzzling isn’t it?  Or that not even an attorney working for them has opted to explain such real-world examples – doesn’t that silence speak volumes?

But these vexing internal industry issues are potentially opportunities in disguise too. Every crisis is also an opportunity, once properly understood – but only if someone is committed to doing all that is necessary to navigate the challenges and thus get to the promised land.

Zell could have thrown his arms up over frustrations experienced in MHVille long ago.  He hasn’t, he keeps investing.  Why?  Because, he said in a statement, that Equity LifeStyle Properties (ELS) has long-term confidence in the industry.

Which brings us back to Zell’s mantra. Thanks again to to all who’ve made this the runaway most-read trade media in all of manufactured housing.  Yes, we do things differently. But is that part of the reason that has made and kept us #1?  

With no further adieu, let’s dive into the real-world scenarios – in the positive as well as the problematic reports – from the week that was: 2-10-2019 to 2-17-2019.  Because each report, properly understood, is part of the puzzling promise of manufactured homes as the solution for the affordable housing crisis that is hiding in plain sight.

 

New Featured Articles and Reports for February on MHProNews

February 2019

 

What’s New on MHLivingNews

 

Democrats, Republicans Agree – “Manufactured Homes Can Play a Vital Role in Easing” the Affordable Housing Shortage

 

What’s New from MHARR

ManufacturedHousingAssocRegulatoryReformLogoMHARRlogo

 

MHARR-ani

 

What’s New on the Masthead

TheMastheadCommentaryLATonyKovachMHProNews

Grasping True Value of the Green New Deal for America, Affordable Housing Professionals and Advocates

 

What’s New on the Daily Business News on MHProNews

1DailyBusinessNewsLogoMHProNewsLogo-1

 

Saturday 2.16.2019

  “Appalled” said David McCarthy – HUD Cites “Substandard Conditions,” But How Many Multi-Million Opportunities for Investors and Manufactured Housing Pro?

“Appalled” said David McCarthy – HUD Cites “Substandard Conditions,” But How Many Multi-Million Opportunities for Investors and Manufactured Housing Pro?

 

Friday 2.15.2019

  Manufactured Home Marketing Resource, Richest and Poorest Counties in each of the 50 United States of America

Manufactured Home Marketing Resource, Richest and Poorest Counties in each of the 50 United States of America

  America’s $22 Trillion Debt, Markets Soar, Plus Manufactured Housing Stock Updates

America’s $22 Trillion Debt, Markets Soar, Plus Manufactured Housing Stock Updates

 

  Legacy Housing Announces New Bulk Leasing Program for Manufactured Home Communities and Mobile Home Parks

Legacy Housing Announces New Bulk Leasing Program for Manufactured Home Communities and Mobile Home Parks

 

  Warren Buffett “Oracle of Omaha” HBO Documentary Berkshire Hathaway #Advexon Video

Warren Buffett “Oracle of Omaha” HBO Documentary Berkshire Hathaway #Advexon Video

 

Thursday 2.14.2019

 

  Managing Mueller Russia Probe Outcome? NBC, Other Mainstream Media Reports Soften, Investor Impacts? Plus, MH Market Updates

  21st Mortgage Suit’s CFPB Denial, Exclusive Document on Berkshire Hathaway Manufactured Housing Brands Investigation

21st Mortgage Suit’s CFPB Denial, Exclusive Document on Berkshire Hathaway Manufactured Housing Brands Investigation

  Cavco Industries Woes Mount, Official, Unofficial Insights, Broader Manufactured Home Industry Impacts?

Cavco Industries Woes Mount, Official, Unofficial Insights, Broader Manufactured Home Industry Impacts?

  Economics 101 – Supply, Demand, and Record Number of Job Openings in U.S. and Affordable Factory-Built Housing

Economics 101 – Supply, Demand, and Record Number of Job Openings in U.S. and Affordable Factory-Built Housing

 

Wednesday 2.13.2019

 

  U.S. Department of Energy Proposed Rulemaking Could Impact Manufactured Housing

U.S. Department of Energy Proposed Rulemaking Could Impact Manufactured Housing

  MHVille Exclusive – Democrats Senators Sign Anti-Competitive Practices Letter to DoJ, Plus MH Market Updates

MHVille Exclusive – Democrats Senators Sign Anti-Competitive Practices Letter to DoJ, Plus MH Market Updates

  Trust in News, Washington Post vs Investors Business Daily Poll Results, MHVille Impacts

Trust in News, Washington Post vs Investors Business Daily Poll Results, MHVille Impacts

  Thorns and Roses In Manufactured Home Community Controversy

Thorns and Roses In Manufactured Home Community Controversy

 

Tuesday 2.12.2019

 

  New Law Benefits Manufactured Home Community Owners, Residents

New Law Benefits Manufactured Home Community Owners, Residents

  Legacy Housing Announces Corporate Role Changes, Plus Manufactured Housing Market Updates

Legacy Housing Announces Corporate Role Changes, Plus Manufactured Housing Market Updates

  State-Level Data Provided for Total Manufactured Home Shipments in 5 Key States for 2018

State-Level Data Provided for Total Manufactured Home Shipments in 5 Key States for 2018

  Aging in Place Harms Millennial Home Buyers, Says New Video and Report – MHVille Opportunity or Obstacle?

Aging in Place Harms Millennial Home Buyers, Says New Video and Report – MHVille Opportunity or Obstacle?

 

Monday 2.11.2019

  News Tip, Document – Is Clayton Homes Engaged in False Down Payments? Deceptive Trade Practices?

News Tip, Document – Is Clayton Homes Engaged in False Down Payments? Deceptive Trade Practices?

  Sun Communities Insider Trading, Ratings Updates, Plus Manufactured Home Industry Stock, REITs, Closing Results

Sun Communities Insider Trading, Ratings Updates, Plus Manufactured Home Industry Stock, REITs, Closing Results

  Boom! Varied Reports Best Economic Optimism in 16 Years, Millions ‘Better Off’ Under President Trump’s Administration

Boom! Varied Reports Best Economic Optimism in 16 Years, Millions ‘Better Off’ Under President Trump’s Administration

 

  HUD’s $2+ Billion Grants, Manufactured Housing Institute, Manufactured Housing Association for Regulatory Reform, & MH Opportunities Galore

HUD’s $2+ Billion Grants, Manufactured Housing Institute, Manufactured Housing Association for Regulatory Reform, & MH Opportunities Galore

 

Sunday 2.10.2019

 

  MH Black Eye, or Opportunity in Disguise? Vexing Saga of Millie Francis’ Faith Based Art, Bradenton Tropical Palms ROC, Vanguard Management, Knox and Levine

MH Black Eye, or Opportunity in Disguise? Vexing Saga of Millie Francis’ Faith Based Art, Bradenton Tropical Palms ROC, Vanguard Management, Knox and Levine

 

That’s this Sunday morning recap of “News through the lens of manufactured homes, and factory-built housing” © 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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“The Illusion of Motion Versus Real-World Challenges”

 

 

 

 

 

 

U.S. Department of Energy Proposed Rulemaking Could Impact Manufactured Housing

February 13th, 2019 No comments

USDeptOfEnergyProposedRuleMakingCouldImpactManufacturedHousing

The Department of Energy was established during the administration of President Jimmy Carter.

 

The creation of the DOE was a throwback to the drama of lines at U.S. gas stations arguably sparked by policies from the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries or OPEC.

 

UnitedStatesDepartmentofEnergyDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

 

Decades of American involvement in Middle Eastern affairs was just part of the ebb and flow of oil, energy, terror, or geopolitical issues.

 

OPECOrganizationofPetrolroleumExportingCountriesWikiDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

 

Fast-forward to the 2019.  A generation has grown up that has no experience much less memory of those episodes from the 1970s.  The U.S. says it is now the top oil and gas producer in the world. Texas, per reports, is now producing more oil and gas than at any other time in its history.

And from the great state of Texas comes former Governor Rick Perry, who is now the Secretary of the Department of Energy.

With that brief backdrop, is this press release to the Daily Business News on MHProNews from the Manufactured Housing Association for Regulatory Reform or MHARR.

 MHARRNEWSheaderDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

 

FEBRUARY 13, 2019

 

TO:                  MHARR MANUFACTURERS

                        MHARR STATE AFFILIATES

                        MHARR TECHNICAL REVIEW GROUP (TRG)

 

FROM:             MHARR

 

RE:                  NEW PROPOSED ENERGY STANDARDS RULE SHOULD 

                        APPLY TO MANUFACTURED HOUSING ENERGY RULEMAKING

 

The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) has published a new proposed rule in the February 13, 2019 Federal Register (copy attached) that would significantly modify its procedures for developing new or revised energy conservation standards and related test procedures for consumer products, “appliances,” and certain commercial and industrial equipment.

While the proposed rule, as published, does not specifically reference standards development and/or test procedures under section 413 of the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007 (42 U.S.C. 17071) directly pertaining to manufactured homes, the proposed rule does, by its terms, apply to DOE’s Appliance Standards Program — the same program under which the original proposed DOE manufactured housing energy standards rule (published June 17, 2016) was developed and subsequently modified by DOE pursuant to a Notice of Data Availability (NODA) published in the Federal Register on August 3, 2018. Industry members will recall that the manufactured housing energy rule had not substantially progressed at DOE until a segment of the industry, together with energy special interests (and DOE) in 2014, sought and engineered an illegitimate, truncated, dysfunctional “negotiated rulemaking” under DOE’s “appliance” rulemaking process, as a fig-leaf designed to achieve a pre-ordained result.

Given that the proposed (and still pending) DOE manufactured housing standards were developed under DOE Appliance Standards Program procedures that are addressed by the changes proposed in the February 13, 2019 DOE Notice, MHARR will file comments with DOE seeking to have the procedural modifications noted in the proposed rule applied to the manufactured housing proceeding, which would constitute yet another basis (among many others previously detailed by MHARR) for the withdrawal of any and all previously-proposed versions of the DOE manufactured housing standards – developed under or derived from — the inherently tainted DOE “negotiated rulemaking” process, and the ultimate development of a new rule based on a legitimate and lawful standards-development process consistent with the regulatory policies of the Trump Administration.

Among other things, the February 13, 2019 proposed rule would: (1) expand various procedural protections to test procedure rulemakings for regulated products; (2) define “a significant energy savings threshold that must be met before DOE will update an energy conservation standard;” and (3) “clarify DOE’s commitment to publish a test procedure six months before a related standards [Notice of Proposed Rulemaking].”  This is particularly significant in relation to DOE’s proposed manufactured housing energy standards, insofar as proposed test procedures were not published by DOE until after publication of the June 17, 2016 proposed rule, as was pointed out by MHARR at the time.

Written comments on the proposed rule are due by April 15, 2019.  MHARR will submit comprehensive comments (and participate in related meetings) in advance of the April 15, 2019 deadline and will make its comments available for reference by industry members.

As always, MHARR shall keep you apprised of any new developments in this matter.

 

cc:  Other Interested HUD Code Industry Members

 

— end of MHARR release —

 

See the related reports, below the byline, business development opportunities, and notices.  “We Provide, You Decide.” © ## (News, analysis, and commentary.)

 

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

http://www.mhpronews.com/blogs/daily-business-news/doe-rfi-closed-but-issue-impact-still-looms-over-manufactured-housing-homebuyers/

 

 

After Persistent MHARR Push-Back, DOE Proposed Manufactured Housing Energy Rule Deemed “Inactive”

 

Revival Of DOE Energy Rule May Require Legal Action

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

HUD’s $2+ Billion Grants, Manufactured Housing Institute, Manufactured Housing Association for Regulatory Reform, & MH Opportunities Galore

February 11th, 2019 No comments

HUDs2BillionGrantsManufacturedHousingInstituteManufacturedHousingAssocRegulatoryReformMHOpportunitiesGaloreMHProNews

The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) announced on Friday, February 8, 2019 over $2 billion dollars in new grants.  Their full, official statement will follow below.  It holds significance for manufactured housing on a variety of levels.

 

Why?  Because there are a wide range of programs and opportunities that manufactured housing could be tapping into.  One might say that there are “opportunities galore” for affordable manufactured home professionals and investors.

To set the stage of the HUD Release, it is worth noting that the over $2 billion dollars in grants would be be more than 25% of all HUD Code manufactured homes sold in 2018.

 

With the final 2018 production and shipment reports now in, it is known that manufactured housing finished the year with well under 100,000 new HUD Code manufactured home shipments (96,555).  About a year before, the Arlington, VA based Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) had estimated the year would finish at some 107,000 thousand new units shipped.

Four years ago, MHI President Richard ‘Dick’ Jennison pledged on a video recorded statement before dozens of industry professionals at the 2015 Louisville Manufactured Housing Show that the manufactured home industry could achieve 500,000 new homes produced.  More details on that are available at the linked text/image box below.  But recall that in the early 1990s, in 3 years, manufactured housing production more than doubled. There is more capital, and more technology available today than there was then.  There is also arguably more demand for affordable housing today than at that time.

Put differently, MHI’s Jennison was not wrong in saying that the 500,000 new home shipments total could be achieved. That would deductively imply that in markets like yours, sales could rise by over 500%.

 

MHI CEO Dick Jennison’s Pledge – 500,000 New Manufactured Home Shipments

 

In 1998, the industry hit its last high-water mark of over 372,000 new HUD Code manufactured homes built and sold.  In the pre-HUD Code mobile home era, factory builders approached 600,000 new units for 2 years.

Both major trade groups – the Washington, D.C. based Manufactured Housing Association for Regulatory Reform (MHARR) and MHI have noted in various statements the quality of today’s manufactured homes.  That is a point of agreement between the two national trade associations.

There is an industry blogger who periodically confuses – by intent or accident – the nature of the two oldest national manufactured housing trade groups.  The difference is significant, and the Daily Business News on MHProNews will turn to what each association says about itself for the distinction.

The Manufactured Housing Association for Regulatory Reform is a Washington, D.C.-based national trade association representing the views and interests of independent producers of federally-regulated manufactured housing.” That statement by MHARR was on their last press release to MHProNews and is what their releases have stated for years. A 501c3 non-profit group must state their mission, it isn’t in principle a matter of conjecture.

What does the MHI say about itself?

The Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) is the only national trade organization representing all segments of the factory-built housing industry. MHI members include home builders, retailers, community operators, lenders, suppliers and affiliated state organizations,” is what the MHI about us page states.

A press release by MHI public relations staff member Patti Boerger said, “MHI is the only national trade organization representing all segments of the factory-built housing industry.  MHI members include home builders, lenders, home retailers, community owners and managers, suppliers and others affiliated with the industry.  MHI’s membership also includes 50 affiliated state organizations.”

Rephrased, MHARR represents producers of HUD Code manufactured homes.  MHI represents producers too, but also state that they represent the “post-production” sectors of the industry.  As a related point, since that 2016 release by Boerger quoted above, 2 state community association broke ranks with MHI, and in 2018 launched a national community-owner focused association. That group is The National Association of Manufactured Housing Community Owners (NAMHCO).

Those are facts, facts, facts – including what the various trade groups have said about themselves.  It should be noted that there are modular housing or commercial construction, and systems building trade organizations too.  But those noted above are specifically engaged in manufactured housing, with MHI alone claiming to do even more by including the phrase “all segmentsof factory-built housing.

 

HUD’s Release, Data, Followed by Analysis

On Friday, the Department of Housing issued the following release. It linked to the list immediately below, where the featured image and map at the top of this column were from.

See for yourself just how many – or few – projects involve manufactured housing?  Per HUD, by state and territories.

 

MAPHomelessnessDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

Here is the full HUD release from Friday, February 8, 2019.  The commentary below the HUD breakdown by state was provided by MHProNews.

 

HUDNewsHousingUrbanDevelopmentDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

HUD AWARDS OVER $2 BILLION TO HELP END HOMELESSNESS

Federal grants to help thousands of homeless assistance programs nationwide

        WASHINGTON – The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development today awarded $202 million in FY18 Continuum of Care (CoC) Program grants to support new homeless programs across the country, including nearly $50 million to projects dedicated to assisting survivors of domestic violence, dating violence, and stalking. View a complete list of all the state and local homeless projects awarded funding.

Last month, HUD announced nearly $2 billion in CoC grants to renew funding to thousands of local homeless assistance programs nationwide.  Combined, this funding represents a record investment to support state and local efforts to reduce and end homelessness.

HUD Secretary Ben Carson made the announcement in Akron, Ohio today during a visit to the Battered Women’s Shelter, a grantee that received funding and will use it to house domestic violence victims who are on the verge of homelessness.

“Today we make another critical investment to those persons and families living in our shelters and on our streets,” said HUD Secretary Ben Carson. “These new programs will join those already on the front lines in their communities working to end homelessness.”

HUD supports a broad array of interventions designed to assist individuals and families experiencing homelessness, particularly those living in places not meant for habitation, located in sheltering programs, or at imminent risk of becoming homeless.  Each year, HUD serves more than a million people through emergency shelter, transitional, and permanent housing programs.

HUD continues to challenge state and local planning organizations called “Continuums of Care” to support their highest performing local programs that have proven most effective in meeting the needs of persons experiencing homelessness in their communities.  Many of these state and local planners also embraced HUD’s call to shift funds from existing underperforming projects to create new ones that are based on best practices that will further their efforts to prevent and end homelessness.

 

HUD$2.1billionhomelessnessgrantsDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

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

— end of HUD release —

 

BeIntheKnowMHEILOGOandMHILogoDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

Collage by MHProNews, with MHI elements from their website on today’s date.

 

Manufactured housing is failing to meet the stated goals of its post-production sector staff ‘leader,’ MHI President Dick Jennison.

 

MHIRepresentingTheFactoryBuiltHousingIndustryDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

 

There is an affordable housing crisis. As the links below the byline and notices reveal, top MHI staffers have been getting paid bonuses.

 

WhoWeAreManufacturedHousingInstituteMHIOnlyNationalTradeAssociationRepresentingAllSegmentsofFactoryBuiltHousingDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

There are numerous third-party reports and news stories in 2018 that reflected the quality, value, and need for manufactured homes.

So why is the industry underperforming?

MHI production rival MHARR laid out the facts in the report linked here and further below.

MHARR points their finger directly at MHI, as they are the post-production association side of the industry. The article above provides the final tallies and hard data.  Their article linked here and further below shares an analysis by Mark Weiss, JD, President and CEO of MHARR.

The questions are not moot.  They are germane – indeed, necessary to explore – if the industry is going to recover from its 2-decade funk. A news analysis by our publisher is linked here and among the text-image linked boxes below the bylines and notices.

That’s this morning’s edition of MH “Industry News, Tips, and Views Pros Can Use© where “We Provide, You Decide.” © ## (News, analysis, and commentary.)

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To report a news tip, click the image above or send an email to iReportMHNewsTips@mhmsm.com – To help us spot your message in our volume of email, please put the words NEWS TIP in the subject line.

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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.

 

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HUD Code Manufactured Home Production Decline Persists – Time For Action Not Excuses

 

 

“The Illusion of Motion Versus Real-World Challenges”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Real Rats and Disease – Not Metaphors – Where’s Manufactured Housing Industry Leadership?

February 5th, 2019 Comments off

 

RealRatsDiseaseWheresManufacturedHousingIndustryLeadershipDailyBusinessnewsMHproNEws

Storm drains used for human waste.

 

Piles of garbage.  Rats with fleas – roaming through and over people living on city streets – that are spreading typhus.

A historic account from the so-called middle ages?

No.  Welcome to Los Angeles, in 2019 where 55,000 are homeless “due to the terrible housing crisis there,” said Dr. Marc Siegel.

 

 

There are real world consequences for millions of Americans that are caused by the affordable housing problem in this nation.  Homelessness is one of those outcomes.

 

 

The Daily Business News on MHProNews reported in December on a study by Zillow that underscored their data’s pointing to rising rents causing more homelessness.  Of course.

 

Zillow Research Reveals Impact of Rising Rents on Homelessness, Affordable Housing Advocates, Public Officials, and Investors Take Note

 

A recent report from HUD found similarly troubling data.

 

New HUD Report Reveals Tragedy of Homelessness, When Solution for Affordable Housing is Hiding in Plain Sight

 

Per HUD’s 2018 Annual Homeless Assessment Report to Congress found that 552,830 persons experienced homelessness on a single night in 2018, an increase of 0.3 percent since last year. Meanwhile, homelessness among veterans fell 5.4 percent and homelessness experienced by families with children declined 2.7 percent nationwide since 2017.”  See more in the report linked in the text box above.

MHProNews and MHLivingNews have touted the affordable housing solution that is hiding in plain sight for years.

MHARR’s President and CEO, Mark Weiss, JD, described in stark terms the “Illusion of Motion” that the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) and their surrogates have spun.

Meanwhile, despite the need for some 8 million plus new housing units, HUD Code manufactured home shipments have dropped? What’s going on?

 

Manufactured Home Production Slide Continues – Call it Corruption, Collusion, Incompetence, Attempted Coverup – Self-Evident Failures Mount

 

MHProNews is doing yet another test this week of just what, if anything, MHI is doing with respect to a specific and apparently clear case of a violation of the “enhanced preemption” under the Manufactured Housing Improvement Act of 2000. We will report back to industry readers our findings. In the last two years, similar tests have revealed that MHI has not even contacted the offenders. One such example is linked below.

 

Anti-MH Bigotry, Prejudice, and Possibly Illegal Action on Display in Manufactured Housing’s Birthplace?

 

But this much is clear. Third-party voices that touted the manufactured housing as a solution for the affordable housing crisis are missing from the MHI website.  This search for Eric Belksy, who was once featured in a pre-Berkshire Hathaway era brochure by MHI is not found in a web-search on their own site done today.

 

ErikBelskyManufacturedHousingMHIWebsiteDailyBusinessNewsmHProNews

 

It is almost as if MHI doesn’t seriously want to see the industry grow.  Or more to the point, is it because keeping growth limited allows larger players to consolidate smaller ones – at a bargain price?

 

Warren Buffett’s Moat, Understanding Manufactured Housing Requires Grasping Strategic Economic Moats

 

While MHI has hired an attorney to harass MHProNews, which no doubt costs thousands to go after a pro-ethical and sustainable industry growth publisher, where is MHI at hiring attorneys to routinely go after zoning, anti-industry media, or other issues that actually hobble growth?

Facts, evidence, money-trails, and the right questions are nettlesome things. MHI – nor their Omaha-Knoxville masters and allies – won’t reply to such inquiries and concerns. Wonder why?

Meanwhile, some 55,000 people in LA, and hundreds of thousands across the country, are homeless. There are real-world consequences for failure to perform. That’s the troubling “News through the lens of manufactured homes, and factory-built housing” © where “We Provide, You Decide.” © ## (News, analysis, and commentary.)

 

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To report a news tip, click the image above or send an email to iReportMHNewsTips@mhmsm.com – To help us spot your message in our volume of email, please put the words NEWS TIP in the subject line.

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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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Manufactured Home Production Slide Continues – Call it Corruption, Collusion, Incompetence, Attempted Coverup – Self-Evident Failures Mount

February 5th, 2019 Comments off

 

ManufacturedHomeProductionSlideContinuesCallitCorruptionColusionsIncompetenceCoverupSelfEvidentValuresMountDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

 

The Daily Business News on MHProNews starts this report with the release from the Manufactured Housing Association for Regulatory Reform (MHARR) on the new HUD Code manufactured home shipment data for December 2018.

 

We will then turn to some additional analysis and commentary on the closing totals for 2018.

 

HUD Code Manufactured Home Production Decline Persists – Time For Action Not Excuses

 

You can read MHARR’s analysis on their website, by clicking on the text/image graphic above – or continue here below for their complete text, which will be followed by our analysis and commentary which follows their release.

 

HUD Code Manufactured Home Production Decline Persists – Time for Action not Excuses  

Washington, D.C., February 4, 2019 – The Manufactured Housing Association for Regulatory Reform (MHARR) reports that according to official statistics compiled on behalf of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), HUD Code manufactured home production declined again in December 2018. Just-released statistics indicate that HUD Code manufacturers produced 5,943 homes in December 2018, a nearly 18% decline from the 7,245 new HUD Code homes produced during December 2017. On a cumulative basis, then, industry production for 2018 totaled 96,555 homes, a 3.9% increase over the 92,902 HUD Code homes produced in 2017.

Annual HUD Code industry production totals for the past ten years – from 2009 to 2018 – are thus:

  • 2009 – 49,683 homes
  • 2010 – 50,056 homes
  • 2011 – 51,618 homes
  • 2012 – 54,881 homes
  • 2013 – 60,228 homes
  • 2014 – 64,334 homes
  • 2015 – 70,544 homes
  • 2016 – 81,136 homes
  • 2017 – 92,902 homes
  • 2018 – 96,555 homes

 

While the four-consecutive-month decline in industry production that began in September 2018, as previously noted by MHARR, is disconcerting, continuing strength in the broader economy, as well as the exceptional quality and value of today’s HUD Code manufactured homes, demonstrate – once again – that constraints on industry sales and production levels exist primarily, if not exclusively, within the post-production sector, as was detailed by MHARR in the January 2019 edition of “MHARR: Issues and Perspectives.” And, while those constraints, including exclusionary and discriminatory zoning and placement restrictions, as well as wholly inadequate consumer financing support from Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac and Ginnie Mae, are quite real and extremely damaging to both the industry and American consumers of affordable housing, the remedies for those constraints are also quite real and already in existence, in the form – among other things – of the “Duty to Serve Underserved Markets” (DTS) provision of the Housing and Economic Recovery Act of 2008 (HERA) and the enhanced federal preemption of the Manufactured Housing Improvement Act of 2000.  In short, the industry and consumers do not need new laws.  What is sorely needed, rather, is a willingness to aggressively advance and fully implement all aspects of these existing laws, instead of chasing after illusions – i.e., new laws that, even if enacted by a politically-divided Congress, would take still more years to implement.

MHARR, as a key proponent of both DTS and the enhanced preemption of the 2000 reform law, will continue to aggressively advance the full implementation of both provisions to remedy the post-production limitations that continue to be the primary obstacle to the ability of the industry to achieve its full potential for all families – at every rung of the economic ladder – seeking to achieve the American Dream of homeownership.

A further analysis of the official industry statistics shows that the top ten shipment states from the beginning of the industry production rebound in August 2011 through November 2018  — with cumulative, monthly, current year (2018) and prior year (2017) shipments per category as indicated — are:

 

MHARR2018vs2017ToptenManufacturedHousingStatesManufacturedHousingAssocRegualtoryReform

Data per MHARR, graphic by MHProNews.

 

The latest information for December 2018, does not result in any changes to the cumulative top-ten list.

The Manufactured Housing Association for Regulatory Reform is a Washington, D.C.-based national trade association representing the views and interests of independent producers of federally-regulated manufactured housing.

— 30 —

 

First, in fairness and accuracy, one must note that the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) has stated the slide in new home production via their data release to members too.  However, MHI has not raised any alarms.  Quite the contrary, the Arlington, VA based trade group has touted “momentum” in their own materials.

While an MHI attorney specifically complained about the use of this graphic, below, MHI arguably KNEW what as about to occur, per our sources with MHI. Rephrased, MHI produced this video touting “momentum” knowing that production totals were about to show a decline.

 

ManufacturedHousingInstituteMHINewClassofHomesDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

Collage of logos plus a still from MHI Video, logos added by MHProNews. Provided under fair use guidelines.  MHARR and MHProNews were essentially alone in publicly warning against this ‘new class of homes.  It should have been obvious that the HUD Code as a whole should have been promoted, not a tiny select group of housing units that have yet to take off. The logic for their ‘new class’ was arguably flawed from the inception. The data now proves it.

ManufacturedHousingInstitutelogoMHILogoMHIVideoStillsMillionsofViewsDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

 

Their promotions are red-herring, razzle-dazzle, whatever phrase one might call it, besides an attempted deception – a ‘cover up,’ in that sense.

 

RedHerringWikipediaDailyBusinessNewsMHproNews

Artful dodge, razzle dazzle, ways of emotionally or otherwise moving the focus away from the actual issue.

 

Let’s look at the data from MHARR above, through a different lens.

 

Top10States5StatesDeclineManufacturedHousingIndustryDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

 

The Arlington-based association have used MHI surrogates to echo increasingly self-evidently false impressions.  MHI’s members include the top 3 producers.  They therefor could or should have known the coming totals, well in advance of the industry at large.  Yet MHI and their  amen-corner connected trade publishers are still singing sunshine and roses. What credibility do those MHI mouthpieces have, given the stubborn facts?

While some sign ‘amen’ to all that MHI says, meanwhile, the new manufactured home shipment levels have demonstrably dropped. Facts are #NettlesomeThings.

Numbers of state associations pass along MHI “housing alerts” and ‘news updates’ without any critical analysis. That’s not to condemn all state associations and their executives — some of them are reliable sources for us.  But those that do so feel apparently feel trapped.

While mainstream housing, multifamily building, or RV shipments have soared, manufactured housing is snoring. While there is a modest rise at the first of the year, it was almost wiped out during the drop of last 4 months of 2018.

As MHProNews recently reminded readers, 4 years ago, Richard ‘Dick’ Jennison assured manufactured housing professionals in front of a live audience, caught on video, that the industry could do 500,000 new home shipments.  Previously, MHI projected 107,000 shipments for 2018.  Now, the industry fell thousands of units short of even 100,000.

 

MHI CEO Dick Jennison’s Pledge – 500,000 New Manufactured Home Shipments

 

The reason we keep reminding readers of this video of MHI’s CEO Jennison is that he signaled their slow growth at the time. Jennison’s words, on camera.

 

 

The graphic below was produced prior to the final totals that we now have in hand.  It will have to be updated, as it is 3,445 units too high. Nevertheless, it is still more accurate on the GDP contributions at retail of manufactured homes to the U.S. economy.  Why is it that MHI can maintain – with a straight face – inaccurate information?

But the point of the graphic below is to highlight the opportunity, vs. our industry’ truly meek performance.

 

ManufacturedHomeTotalsin1.6TrillionDollarUSHousingIndustry2018-Feb22019

This graphic needs to be updated in the light of the fact that it shows 3,445 more units than were actually sold in 2018. But the principle is sound, Manufactured Housing is underperforming. MHI can’t have it both ways. MHI either are or are not the industry’s ‘leaders.’ If MHI are the leaders, then aren’t they responsible for poor results?

 

Here is the simple logic.

MHI either

 

  • Knows how to grow manufactured housing, but is not doing so.
  • Does not know how to grow manufactured housing, but postures through videos and other tools that they are properly promoting the industry.
  • Some combination of the above 2.

Are any of those outcomes acceptable?  Isn’t this the latest example of why deceptive trade practices should be part of a legal investigation of MHI?

DeceptiveTradePracticesManufacturedHousingInstituteDailyBusinessNewsMHproNews

The need for a new, post-production association is becoming ever-more-clear.  Instead of explaining themselves, or defending the industry against mainstream media or other problematic errors about manufactured housing, why are they spending legal dollars threatening MHProNews?

MHI has made MHProNews part of the narrative, by directly and indirectly hiring attorney(s).  Okay, aren’t their deeds once more showing their hand?  MHI won’t defend the industry, nor are they successfully promoting the industry, but they are willing to spend money attacking those that are reporting the facts about their failures?

It is the Omaha-Knoxville-Arlington axis and their allies that have ducked the issues.

Let’s close with Mark Weiss, JD’s, apt summary from the above.

 

MarkWeissJDPresidentCEOManufacturedHousingAssocRegulatoryReformDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews“…continuing strength in the broader economy, as well as the exceptional quality and value of today’s HUD Code manufactured homes, demonstrate – once again – that constraints on industry sales and production levels exist primarily, if not exclusively, within the post-production sector, as was detailed by MHARR in the January 2019 edition of “MHARR: Issues and Perspectives.” And, while those constraints, including exclusionary and discriminatory zoning and placement restrictions, as well as wholly inadequate consumer financing support from Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac and Ginnie Mae, are quite real and extremely damaging to both the industry and American consumers of affordable housing, the remedies for those constraints are also quite real and already in existence, in the form – among other things – of the “Duty to Serve Underserved Markets” (DTS) provision of the Housing and Economic Recovery Act of 2008 (HERA) and the enhanced federal preemption of the Manufactured Housing Improvement Act of 2000.  In short, the industry and consumers do not need new laws.  What is sorely needed, rather, is a willingness to aggressively advance and fully implement all aspects of these existing laws, instead of chasing after illusions – i.e., new laws that, even if enacted by a politically-divided Congress, would take still more years to implement.”

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

 

ManufacturedHousingProNewsMHProNewsConfidentialTipsDocumentsNews

To report a news tip, click the image above or send an email to iReportMHNewsTips@mhmsm.com – To help us spot your message in our volume of email, please put the words NEWS TIP in the subject line.

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

NOTICE 2: Readers have periodically reported that they are getting a better experience when reading MHProNews on the Microsoft Edge, or Apple Safari browser than with Google’s Chrome browser. Chrome reportedly manipulates the content of a page more than the other two.

(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.

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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.

 

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Lanham Act, Monopolistic Housing Institute, err, Manufactured Housing Institute, Legal Bullies, and You

February 4th, 2019 Comments off

 

LanhamActFairUseMonopolisticHousingInstituteManufacturedHousingInstituteMHProNews600

Attorneys learn to think systematically. So too do engineers, philosophers, mathematicians, MDs, and other scientists.

 

Ideally, attorneys and other thinkers consider not only their own position, but other perspectives too. The better an attorney understands their opponent’s argument(s), the more effective they can be in representing their client’s interests.

It goes without saying to longtime readers here that MHProNews’ management are not attorneys. But we can read, research, analyze, and think. We can and do cite sources, first, because it is the right thing to do.  But also because crediting the source is what the law suggests should occur.  The Daily Business News on MHProNews does not knowingly use another party’s writing or images, without giving proper credit.

For media and certain kinds of critical analysis, there’s a legal principle involved – and its know as “fair use.”

A well known, third-party example will help illustrate and make the point of fair use.  CNN, MSNBC, and Fox News are among the mainstream media that routinely use each other’s logos, quote each other’s work, and use each other’s video clips.  Since the work of all mainstream media is copyrighted, and their trade marks are registered, how is it possible for each news outlet to use the other’s work legally?

Because such use is covered under the well-established principle used by media known as “Fair Use.”  The composite images show below are from this date, and are shown under fair-use guidelines.

 

FakeNewsMeltdownSeanHannityUsesCNNMSNBCCBSOtherLogosDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

For the sake of MHI’s attorneys, we’ll make our third-party fair use disclaimer logo larger today than we normally do. We also routinely place a notice at the end of each column, with our byline, disclaimers, and notices. We often use a smaller version of an image like the above on third-party sourced images, citing that source.  Some variation of that is what the law requires. Thus, we are neither stealing copyrighted content, nor claiming to be endorsed by MHI, etc. Anyone who thoughtfully, carefully reads an article by us knows that MHProNews is engaged in fact-checking, analysis, and often critiquing MHI and their puppet-master’s work. That kind of analysis by media is precisely what is permitted under fair use. MHI themselves referred to us as news, so they logically have no solid argument.

 

How Is MHI Spending Members Dues?

The Arlington, VA based Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) apparently decided some time ago that it is okay to spend untold thousands in dues and other revenue money defending themselves and/or Clayton Homes, or their related lending units.  Meanwhile, they routinely refuse to defend the industry at large that they claim to represent.

 

MarkTwainSamuelClemensLanceIndermanEasiertoFoolPeopleThanConvinceThemThatTheyHaveBeenFooledQUote

 

Who levels the charge that MHI isn’t acting in the best interests of most of their own members? Answer, past and current MHI members.  Even MHI’s prior president, see linked report further below, arguably took some polite-but-pointed parting shots at his own prior bosses.

The quotes that follow are for newcomers to MHProNews, which are attracted day-by-day to this industry-leading trade publication.

The following quotes serve to make the point that MHARR’s founding president and former MHI VP likewise made, or that the new NAMHCO association’s founder made, when they announced their break with MHI over their failures to perform.  Following these quotes below, we will springboard to the headline topic, after these thought-provoking examples.

 

SoTheAssociationMHIIsNotThereFortheIndustryUnlesstheinterestsoftheBigBoysJointheIndustry'sMartyLavinMHIAwardWinnerQuoteMHProNews

 

MHCommunitiesOfAZNealTHaneyPresidentWhyTheyQuitManufacturedHousingInstituteMHIDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews600

 

 

DannyGhorbaniFormerMHIVpQuoteFoundingMHARRPresidentQuoteDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

What is MHI Actually Accomplishing?

MHI is what we’ve editorially and satirically have called the:

  • Monopolistic Housing Institute, or the
  • Machiavellian Housing Institute, or the
  • Manipulative Housing Institute, with each satirical alternative title intended to provoke thought and analysis by industry professionals and observers. Are any or all of those alternative titles an apt description, or not?
ManipulativeHousingInstituteMHILogoManufacturedHousingInstitutelogoMHProNews

Satire is a form of approved fair use, according to the courts.

 

Perhaps the bigger or better question is why does MHI target MHProNews – a pro-sustainable and pro-ethical growth trade publisher, that for years was an MHI member – instead of spending those resources defending the industry at large? If MHI were doing their jobs, they would have arguably have no concerns from our analysis, critiques, and commentaries, would they?

So, whatever MHI says to their allies privately, what is increasingly apparent is the validity of the concerns of those industry members noted above about topics like those linked from this report.

The related reports, further below the byline and notices, are but the most recent reasons why a growing number of industry professionals are alarmed at what MHI allows – and what their puppet masters do.

Meanwhile, MHI’s attorney’s target MHProNews’ publisher.  Isn’t their action a stealth attack on the First Amendment?

Since that’s their apparent tactic, we’ll look below at some claims from their purported outside counsel, which is citing the Lanham Act as their claimed grounds for possible legal action against this platform’s publisher.

 

LanhamActDefinedTradeMarkCopyrightLawDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

 

In a letter dated 12.21.2108 to MHProNews’ parent company’s managing member, attorney John J. Greiner, of Graydon Head & Richey, LLP gave numerous examples of his complaints, referencing the Lanham Act.  Perhaps Greiner doesn’t think we can read, research, or think for ourselves?

Consider but a few of the legal references that arguably refute Greiner’s claim.

 

LanhamActDefensesFairUseManufacturedHousingIndustryDailyBusinessNewsMHProNew

A common tactic used by an opponent willing to abuse the legal system is to file suit, even if they are wrong. Some opponents want to drive an opposing firm or operation into financial insolvency, which could be done through costly legal battles. But that tactic is predicated on hiring an attorney to defend against a claim in the first place. People and organizations can act pro-se or pro-per until such time as they may want to shift strategies.

 

It is worth noting that a specific article Greiner mentioned is this one:

 

“Lots of Sizzle,” Clayton Sales Performance, Other MHI & Clayton Homes News Tips

 

Note that it mentions Clayton Homes, as well as MHI?

Greiner says “Again, we demand that you immediately pull this material from your blog and cease and desist any further copyright violations going forward.”

First, while our website is made up of several blogs, it is more properly trade media. Moving on from that minor point, Greiner ominously stated what MHProNews has said for years, “We will monitor your site to ensure that you comply.”  That’s Greiner stating the obvious. MHProNews has been read by MHI staff, plus large, medium, and small industry members for years.  The quote below is one of many examples.

 

BarryColeMHInsuranceRVMHHallofFameCongratsManufacturedHomeIndustryMHProNews

Note, Barry Cole’s prior anniversary kudos message raises an important point. Most publications in the MH space failed or closed years ago. Some have since tried to make the cut, inspired by MHProNews’ success. Some noteworthy efforts have also since been suspended. MHProNews has stood the test of time, and the slings and arrows of the industry’s outrageous fortunes.

 

Response to MHI’s Disputed Allegations

l-a-tony-kovach-daily-business-news-mhpronews-

L. A. ‘Tony’ Kovach is the managing member of LifeStyle Factory Homes, LLC, the publisher of MHProNews.com, MHLivingNews.com and MH Consultant.

Our publisher and managing member said, “We reject this claim by MHI, their purported attorney, and object to the notion that we’ve ever intentionally misused their logo or name.  Anyone of sound mind who objectively reads our various fact-checks, analysis, and critiques of MHI and their puppet-masters knows that we are not claiming to be MHI. Far from it, we’re holding them accountable for their various actions and/or failures to act.  We are not claiming to be MHI, nor have we claimed to be endorsed by them.  Let others bear the burden of being ‘endorsed’ by MHI, which reportedly has many of its top people under investigation.”

That’s L. A. ‘Tony’ Kovach’s tongue-in-cheek way of saying that several of MHI’s top members are facing various forms of legal and media scrutiny.

ManufacturedHousingInstituteLogoMHIBoardOfDirectorsLogoMHIExecutiveCommittee

“An objective reading of what we do would logically reduce their attorney’s argument to a bluff, wrong-headed, or an otherwise misuse of the law, in my lay view.  If they want to insist that we are incorrect, that is what juries are for, and we believe in the jury system.”  said Tony Kovach.  “Furthermore, to be crystal clear, we place a third-party fair use notice routinely on articles.  So we believe that we are well covered by the proper understanding of the principle of fair use under the law.” 

First let’s note that the Daily Business News on MHProNews uses various kinds and sizes of logos, some of which – see the example logos below – specifically state that the item it is attached to is being provided under fair use guidelines.  That is an approved method of citing fair use, per the law.  So Greiner and his clients in Omaha-Knoxville-Arlington axis are sure to see it, here is how a big version of that logo looks.

 

MHProNewsLogoThirdPartyImages

MHProNewsLogoThirdPartyImages112x51

We also use smaller versions of that same logo above, here is but one example, that has the same disclaimer.

But even if that disclaimer above the logo was missing, MHProNews has for years noted at the end of each article that third-party images and references are provided under fair use guidelines.  That are other ways that MHProNews has taken prudential steps at defending our rightful exercise of fair use.

We’re comfortable with the legality of that, based upon third-party legal experts. For example, see the quotations and citations, found as a download, referenced here.

With that disclaimer, let’s next look at what Greiner of Graydon Head & Richey, LLP has complained about.  Because it is illuminating for the industry’s professionals to see what they debatably are wrongfully demanding that MHProNews remove from our website.

 

 

ManufacturedHousingInstitutelogoMHILogoMHIVideoStillsMillionsofViewsDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

Notice that the “third party” “fair use” images notice was larger on this. Either Graydon’s research and attorney are not looking, or perhaps they are trying to bluff. If this is how MHI wants to spend dues money of their members, instead of going after those who harm the industry, c’est la vie.

 

ManufacturedHomeMHShipments1990-2017DailybusinessNewsManufacturedHousingMHProNews600

MHI and their ‘echo chamber’ supporters are either badly misinformed, or won’t look at the facts and their causes. MHI – in the video that the still above references – claims to be promoting the industry. If what they do is ‘promotion,’ why are the results so poor? Why is manufactured housing shipments still well under 50 percent of what their own member company called the long-term average since 1990? Is MHI just bad at fulfilling their claims?  Or is MHI’s failure to perform part of the plan to consolidate the industry into fewer hands at a discounted value? Why are MHI leaders getting bonuses, when they are failing to perform?

 

Bonuses, Bonuses! Manufactured Housing Struggles During Affordable Housing Crisis, While Top MHI Staffers Get Bonuses

 

JohnCGreinerAttorneyPhotoGraydonlawLogoDailyBusinessNewsMHproNewsWhat Greiner has not done is say, ‘gee, MHProNews/MHLivingNews, our clients are not willing to debate or discuss the issues you’ve raised in public. They can’t or won’t try to explain any of the allegations or concerns you’ve raised about MHI, Clayton, 21st et al.  So, we’d rather try various forms of intimidation tactics, hoping to silence your platform instead. Citing the Lanham Act is just a ploy.’

There are countless examples on MHProNews and MHLivingNews where we’ve used third party images and quotes, but always under legally protected third party media reports, critiques, and analysis guidelines.

As noted above, every day, mainstream media does the same thing.  Do you see Fox News suing CNN for showing their logo, when they critique their reports?  No.  Do you see CNN or MSNBC suing Fox News for showing their respective logos when they are doing an analysis, critique or commentary?  No.  Why not?

Because the law arguably allows for doing that, and that includes the fair use provisions and rulings under the Lanham Act.

Consider what the Society for Professional Journalists said in their Code of Ethics page.

SocietyofProfessionalJournalismDailyBusinessNewsMHproNews

See the SPJ’s full code of ethics at this link here.

 

We’ll stand on our understanding of the law.  At some point, they will either sue, or try some other tactic.

But if MHI and their Omaha-Knoxville masters and their allies had the guts, wouldn’t they’d debate in public, instead of ducking public debate?  Wouldn’t they – at a minimum – rationally explain concerns over issues like those linked from this report?

 

Calling out BS

We’re once more accusing the Omaha-Knoxville-Arlington axis and their allies of arguably deceptive trade practices, violations of RICO, marketing rigging, and antitrust laws, among previously cited concerns.  Why not have their attorney’s explain those issues?

If their attorneys sue instead, then we’ll have little choice but to countersue, and use the discovery process to gain even more evidence against them. We’d ask for a jury trial, because the jury system is meant to sort out precisely such contests.

 

ExamplesofLegalReferencestoJuryNullificationDailyBusinessNewsMHproenws

 

If the Omaha-Knoxville-Arlington axis intentions are so pure, why don’t they explain it rationally?  But that doesn’t seem to be the path they’ve chosen – as Graydon’s attorney working for MHI exemplifies.  If so – if they launch a formal legal suit – then may justice be served, and may the best legal argument win.

But let’s be clear.  The latest salvo of the Omaha-Knoxville-Arlington axis isn’t so much directed against us.  Rather, isn’t MHI’s aim at keeping the industry at large in the dark about what MHI and their puppet masters are doing?

 

DearTonySoheylaNoGreaterResourceSpeakstoIssuesOpportunitiesWeFaceAsIndependentRetailersGusRodriguezTejasHomesTX

Gus’ message came in response to a series of exposes on issues within manufactured housing, as well as tips, strategies and opportunities.

 

ICYMI, see what Clayton is said to be doing to their largest independent retailer.  Paraphrasing what MHM said last week, ‘if they rape their largest independent, what chance to the rest of us have?’  See that and other reports below.

The time to push back and fight the forces of the axis that seeks to conquer manufactured housing is now. If not now, when? “We Provide, You Decide.” © ## (News, analysis, and commentary.)

 

ManufacturedHousingProNewsMHProNewsConfidentialTipsDocumentsNews

To report a news tip, click the image above or send an email to iReportMHNewsTips@mhmsm.com – To help us spot your message in our volume of email, please put the words NEWS TIP in the subject line.

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

NOTICE 2: Readers have periodically reported that they are getting a better experience when reading MHProNews on the Microsoft Edge, or Apple Safari browser than with Google’s Chrome browser. Chrome reportedly manipulates the content of a page more than the other two.

(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.

ManufacturedHomeIndustry#1HeadlineNewsMHProNews

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.

 

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Cavco Industries (CVCO) Class Action Suit

January 28th, 2019 Comments off

 

CavcoIndustriesLogoCVCOLogoClassActionLawsuitShareholdersManufacturedModularHousingDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

The draft of the pending class action suit against Cavco Industries (CVCO) is the result of a news tip to the Daily Business News on MHProNews.

 

As regular MHProNews readers know, there are numerous law firms circling Cavco.  This report will review some key claims of the Howard G. Smith lawfirm’s attorneys, acting on behalf of CVCO shareholders in the pending suit.

Quoting from the attached draft, this report will start with – the Nature and Overview of the Plaintiffs Pending Complaint?

  1. This is a class action on behalf of persons and entities that acquired Cavco securities between August 6, 2018 and November 8, 2018, inclusive (the “Class Period”), seeking to pursue remedies under the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 (the “Exchange Act”).

 

  1. On November 8, 2018, the Company revealed that it had received a subpoena from the SEC’s Division of Enforcement on August 20, 2018, requesting certain documents relating to trading in the stock of a public company, and that then-Chief Executive Officer Joseph Stegmayer had received a subpoena regarding similar issues on October 1, 2018.

 

  1. On this news, the Company’s share price fell $49.48 or over 23%, to close at $165.20 per share on November 9, 2018, on unusually heavy trading volume.

 

  1. Throughout the Class Period, Defendants made materially false and/or misleading statements, as well as failed to disclose material adverse facts about the Company’s business, operations, and prospects. Specifically, Defendants failed to disclose to investors: (1) that the Company had agreed to refrain from trading the stock of public companies; (2) that, after such agreement, the Company’s CEO had engaged in the trading of the stock of public companies; (3) that such trading activities were reasonably likely to subject the Company to regulatory investigations; and (4) that, as a result of the foregoing, Defendants’ positive statements about 2 the Company’s business, operations, and prospects were materially false and/or misleading and/or lacked a reasonable basis.

 

  1. As a result of Defendants’ wrongful acts and omissions, and the precipitous decline in the market value of the Company’s securities, Plaintiff and other Class members have suffered significant losses and damages.

 

CLASS ACTION ALLEGATIONS

“(1) that the Company [Cavco] had [previously] agreed to refrain from trading the stock of public companies;

 

(2) that, after such agreement, the Company’s CEO [Joe Stegmayer] had engaged in the trading of the stock of public companies;

 

(3) that such trading activities were reasonably likely to subject the Company to regulatory investigations; and

 

(4) that, as a result of the foregoing, Defendants’ positive statements about the Company’s business, operations, and prospects were materially false and/or misleading and/or lacked a reasonable basis.

 

  1. Throughout the Class Period, Defendants made materially false and/or misleading statements, as well as failed to disclose material adverse facts about the Company’s business, operations, and prospects. Specifically, Defendants failed to disclose to investors:

 

  1. As a result of Defendants’ wrongful acts and omissions, and the precipitous decline in the market value of the Company’s securities, Plaintiff and other Class members have suffered significant losses and damages.”

 

 

Specific and Broader Take-Aways?

There are some voices in the industry’s legal community that indicate that the phrasing used above could potentially be used against some other publicly traded companies, specifically those associated with the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI). If so, that in turn could mean MHI members who ignore the risks associated with the reports like the one linked here could be putting their shareholders at risk too.

Keep in mind that a contact at the Securities and Exchange Commissions (SEC) would neither confirm nor deny that Cavco is being investigated for possible market-rigging collusion in connection with Clayton Homes, a Berkshire Hathaway (BRK) subsidiary. Stegmayer was prior to going to Cavco, a Clayton division president. There have been persistent rumors among some HUD Code manufactured home independents and others that the move by Stegmayer to Cavco was part of a plan hatched at Clayton. But there is no documentation that has yet to be provided to MHProNews that supports such a claim. Why is that of interest?

Consider the second point from the plaintiff’s draft foundation.

Cavco purports to design and produce factory-built homes and to build park model RVs, vacation cabins and systems-built commercial structures.” Purports? Isn’t that the obvious thing that they are doing? Is the Howard G. Smith law-firm signaling that they have something more?

It should be noted that the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) has been characteristically mute on this developing issue. Stegmayer remains in place as the MHI Chairman.

Note too that some bloggers in the industry have attempted to white-wash the seriousness of this matter. There are those who believe that those cheerleading bloggers and ‘trade media’ are acting as a deliberate distraction mechanism from MHI and their puppet masters.

 

A contact at Cavco declined commenting about the specifics of the matter, saying to publisher L.A. ‘Tony’ Kovach “No comment sorryI appreciate the offer (to share a Cavco viewpoint). You are an honest man no matter what George [Allen] says…” It was an interesting comment, as doubtless many at the firm have been harmed, specifically if employees are also shareholders. It should be noted anew, given cheap shots from the galleries, that MHProNews follows the known facts, evidence, and the money.

The full draft legal document against Cavco is attached here.

There is speculation from a source that the draft was provided to MHProNews perhaps as a negotiation tool with Cavco, to use as leverage to quietly settle the case. MHProNews is not in a position to comment on the motivations, or lack thereof, of those who provide authentic news tips backed by evidence.

 

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There’s more on this evolving Cavco Industries (CVCO) and inter-related topic that MHProNews has obtained. In the days ahead, related reports will be published, possibly during the Louisville Show. Watch for it and sign up for the industry’s leading emailed headline news, found at the links below.

As a disclosure, MHProNews’ parent company management holds no position in any of the tracked stocks we include in our evening market report. Friday’s report is linked here. That’s MH “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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Fannie Mae Reports Billions in Manufactured Home Community Deals, Details Others Lack

January 25th, 2019 Comments off

 

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In a release to the Daily Business News on MHProNews, Fannie Mae (OTCQB: FNMA) said that they have “provided more than $65 billion in financing to support the multifamily market in 2018 with its Delegated Underwriting and Servicing (DUS®) program. Fannie Mae continued to serve as a key source of liquidity by attracting a diverse investor base to purchase our DUS Mortgage-Backed Securities (MBS), while building a profitable and sustainable book of business.”

 

For more than 30 years, the DUS platform has brought stability to the multifamily market. Our innovative thinking is driving the industry forward and our commitment to serving our customers remains our top priority,” said Jeffery Hayward, Executive Vice President of Multifamily, Fannie Mae. “Our lender partnerships are also propelling Fannie Mae to be part of a global movement to transform rental housing to be healthier for residents and to help reduce energy and water consumption at the properties we finance.”

The Government Sponsored Enterprises (GSE) of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac have both been given some latitude by the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA)) for using certain qualifying loans on manufactured home communities as credits toward their Duty to Serve (DTS) requirements. Right or wrong, that use of DTS has been far more robust than it has toward single family manufactured home loans.

Fannie Mae was recognized in 2018 as the largest issuer of Green Bonds in the world, with more than $20 billion in Green MBS backed by either green certified properties or properties targeting a reduction in energy or water consumption. Fannie Mae increased its Green Financing portfolio to over $50 billion in 2018, driven by $20 billion in Green Financing. In 2018, Fannie Mae made LIHTC equity investment commitments towards meeting FHFA’s $500 million volume cap by deploying equity to rural and other underserved housing markets throughout the United States. Additionally, Fannie Mae led the affordable market with overall production of $7.4 billion, an increase of 9% from 2017,” stated their release to MHProNews.

Multifamily had another outstanding year in 2018, thanks to our lenders,” said Rob Levin, Senior Vice President for Multifamily Customer Engagement, Fannie Mae. “Together, we supported all market segments, bringing liquidity to the market, while building a balanced portfolio that reflects our strategy with strong credit quality and mission-rich business.”

The following list are the top 10 DUS Lenders produced the highest business volumes in 2018. Also listing that follows also includes the Top 5 Lender rankings for highest volumes in 2018 for Multifamily Affordable Housing, Small Loans, Green Financing, Seniors Housing, Structured Transactions, Manufactured Housing Communities, and Student Housing:

 

Top 10 DUS Producers in 2018             Volume ($Billion)

  1. Wells Fargo Multifamily Capital                      $8.1
  2. Walker & Dunlop, LLC                                    $6.9
  3. Berkadia Commercial Mortgage, LLC             $6.6
  4. CBRE Multifamily Capital, Inc.                        $6.1
  5. Newmark Knight Frank                                    $4.3
  6. Greystone Servicing Corporation, Inc.            $3.9
  7. Capital One, National Association                   $3.8
  8. KeyBank National Association                         $3.4
  9. PGIM Real Estate Finance                              $3.3
  10. Arbor Commercial Funding I, LLC                   $3.2

 

Top 5 DUS Producers for Multifamily Affordable Housing in 2018

  1. Wells Fargo Multifamily Capital
  2. CBRE Multifamily Capital, Inc.
  3. Greystone Servicing Corporation, Inc.
  4. PGIM Real Estate Finance
  5. Jones Lang LaSalle Multifamily, LLC

 

Top 5 DUS Producers for Small Loans in 2018*

  1. Greystone Servicing Corporation, Inc.
  2. Arbor Commercial Funding I, LLC
  3. Hunt Mortgage Group
  4. Walker & Dunlop, LLC
  5. Bellwether Enterprise Real Estate Capital, LLC

 

Top 5 DUS Producers for Green Financing in 2018

  1. Berkadia Commercial Mortgage, LLC
  2. Greystone Servicing Corporation, Inc.
  3. Arbor Commercial Funding I, LLC
  4. CBRE Multifamily Capital, Inc.
  5. Capital One, National Association

 

Top 5 DUS Producers for Seniors Housing in 2018

  1. Berkadia Commercial Mortgage, LLC
  2. Grandbridge Real Estate Capital, LLC
  3. Capital One, National Association
  4. CBRE Multifamily Capital, Inc.
  5. M&T Realty Capital Corporation

 

Top 5 DUS Producers for Structured Transactions in 2018

  1. Wells Fargo Multifamily Capital
  2. Newmark Knight Frank
  3. Walker & Dunlop, LLC
  4. PNC Real Estate
  5. Berkadia Commercial Mortgage, LLC

 

Top 5 DUS Producers for Manufactured Housing Communities in 2018

  1. Walker & Dunlop, LLC
  2. Wells Fargo Multifamily Capital
  3. KeyBank National Association
  4. Berkadia Commercial Mortgage, LLC
  5. Capital One, National Association

 

Top 5 DUS Producers for Student Housing in 2018

  1. Wells Fargo Multifamily Capital
  2. Walker & Dunlop, LLC
  3. CBRE Multifamily Capital, Inc.
  4. PGIM Real Estate Finance
  5. KeyBank National Association

 

Listed below are 2018 production highlights for individual business categories, which are included in the total multifamily production number.

  • Affordable Housing – $7.4 billion comprised of $6.0 billion in Multifamily Affordable Housing (for rent-restricted properties and properties receiving other federal and state subsidies), an increase of 10 percent from $5.4 billion in 2017; and $1.4 billion for properties with rent restrictions between 60 percent and 80 percent AMI, in line with $1.4 billion in 2017
  • Small Loans* – $2.2 billion
  • Green Financing – $20.1 billion (properties with Green Building Certifications or loans targeting a 25 percent reduction or more in energy or water consumption)
  • Student Housing – $2.7 billion
  • Structured Transactions – $9.5 billion
  • Seniors Housing – $2.3 billion
  • Manufactured Housing Communities – $2.9 billion, an increase of 56 percent from $1.9 billion in 2017

Footnotes:

*Small Loans are defined as loans of $3 million or less nationwide and $5 million or less in high-cost markets, and typically finance multifamily properties with five to 50 units.

**Due to rounding, amounts reported may not add up to overall totals.

The above is insightful on several levels.  First, note that more than one of those manufactured home community DUS lenders has ties to Berkshire Hathaway.

Next, is that this is arguably part of the give-take mechanism that Arlington, VA based Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) has used to get some of their community members in the National Community Council (NCC) to swallow and ignore the single-family chattel lending that the Manufactured Housing Association for Regulatory Reform (MHARR) has stressed should be at the core of DTS by the GSEs.

 

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It also brings back into focus what some in manufactured housing call the “sell-out” or “betrayal” of the industry’s independent producers of manufactured homes. How so?  Consider this from Fannie Mae’s own site, which stresses their ‘support’ for manufactured housing as:

  1. A) The Multifamily Manufactured Housing Communities Market . …
  2. B) Develop an enhanced manufactured housing loanproduct for quality manufactured (homes)…

It must not be forgotten that MHI leaders held closed door meetings with Fannie and Freddie, to which none of the parties have released the meeting minutes, that ultimately resulted in the “new class of homes” program that has emerged…

…and so far has landed with a thud.  While Fannie and Freddie are both mum on specifics, the new HUD Code manufactured home shipments data is all the proof that is needed.  That data, combined with anecdotal information from various sources have made it clear that little has occurred from the new class of homes, other than noise from MHI, their allies, and Omaha-Knoxville puppet masters.

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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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