Posts Tagged ‘modular housing news’

Sm+RT Homes Teams with Dynamic Homes, mulls North Minneapolis Plant

September 13th, 2016 Comments off

Photo credit, Finance-Commerce, Bill Klotz.

The Skinny: New residential construction company Sm+RT Homes, LLP, based in Fridley, MN is teaming with Dynamic Homes of Detroit Lakes, MN to provide affordable, factory-built houses in North Minneapolis as well as a modular home manufacturing plant in that part of the city.

North Minneapolis has suffered from foreclosures, the fallout of the pre-2008 mortgage/housing crisis predatory lending, along with a tag as a low-income neighborhood.

A home building plant in Minneapolis, MN of roughly 100,000 square feet that could employ 100 plus workers is being considered, writer Brian Johnson states in Finance & Commerce.

Dynamic Homes has, for a number of years, tried to have more of a presence in urban areas like Minneapolis and St. Paul,” said SM+RT Homes Managing Partner Gary Findell. “They are excited about the opportunity.”


Gary Findell.

Dynamic Homes Director of Business Development Phil Swanson agrees, saying that the company is “certainly interested in pursuing


Phil Swanson, photo credit, LinkedIn.

[a production plant] if the volume is there. You need the volume to support the construction and overhead of a plant operation.” But with volume, the shipping costs incurred in the 200 mile trip to the location would drop and new jobs would be created.

Minneapolis City Council member Blong Yang (Representing Ward 5) said that there are upwards of 300 vacant single-family lots in North Minneapolis alone. Yang also shared that discussions have been “very, very preliminary.


Mark Brunner, MMHA.

Mark Brunner, Executive Director of the Manufactured & Modular Home Association of Minnesota (MMHA) told MHProNews that the Union Builders modular home plant was opened several years ago in St. Paul, MN with the goal of addressing the market’s shortage of affordable housing. It appears that plant closed after building some 20 homes.

The idea was to address the urban housing market’s shortage of affordable housing,” Brunner said. “I mentioned to the [Finance & Commerce] reporter that there is one recent example of modular homes successfully being integrated into a mixed use subdivision…some are two story …in a development called Cloverfield, located in the suburb of Chaska.”

A 1,700-square-foot bungalow was completed at 4309 Irving Ave. N. in Minneapolis (see photo at top). It was built in a production center in Detroit Lakes. Construction on at least four more modular homes on currently vacant Northside lots will follow.


Photo credit, SM+RT Home website.

Founded in March 2016 by Findell and Thor Construction CEO, Ravi Norman, Sm+RT Homes was “created to


Ravi Norman, photo credit, BizJournals.

build new and quality housing in Minneapolis,” according to its website. The operation says it can save between 20%-30% off the cost of conventional building, but one of their hurdles is to overcome misconceptions about factory built homes, notably manufactured homes.

Sm+RT Homes says it can build a modular house in 45 to 60 days, or about half the time of a typical site-built structure. Dynamic Homes has produced more than 20,000 modular homes since the company was founded in 1970, Swanson said. The company primarily serves Minnesota, North and South Dakota, Iowa and Wisconsin. ##

(Editor’s note: For a related discussion on modular vs. manufactured homes from a modular builder Otis Orsburn, please see the interview at this link.)

(Image credits are as shown.)

rcwilliams-writer75x75manufacturedhousingindustrymhpronewsSubmitted by RC Williams to the Daily Business News, MHProNews.

Manufactured Housing’s Sunday Morning Weekly News Recap June 21-28, 2015 adds a New Feature!

June 28th, 2015 Comments off

sunday-morning-manufactured-housing-weekly-pro-news-recap-mhpronews-com-Every week, the ‘history’ of modern manufactured and modular housing is passing before the eyes of our readers here. We cover some mainstream housing news too, when it ought to be of keen interest to those in some aspect of factory-built housing. Our web reports tell us there are those who are faithfully on our pages daily by the thousands. Our most recent stats suggest the average page views (which loosely relates to the number of articles being read) are an amazing 12 per reader per visit.

Then there are those who can only come once weekly, and for both of the daily or weekly reading groups, this headline news recap has time saving, insights-yielding and thus potential money-making value!  Daily readers can make sure they didn’t ‘miss’ or forget something useful to them, and those weekly readers can catch up on Sunday morning.

You’ll see news this week on manufactured home community giants ELS, and SUN Communities too.  Skyline Homes has a new president.  There are features on bamboo housing, Wells Fargo, an MH Sales tax roll back and much, much more via the headlines linked below.

The weekly recap this week will add a new feature. We’re also adding the headlines for the videos and related stories on popular Manufactured Home Living News. On – the industry’s stories are being told through the lens of those who know MH well and respect our industry’s amazing products and services. MH Home owners, industry pros and other experts who have taken the time to really get to know and understand manufactured homes and the MH community lifestyle. So this week, you’ll find below a Video Interview with an elected official, a whily fisherman who loves his MH, and a housing inspector who compares MH to conventional housing are among the features drawing numbers that dwarf many MH websites. The Dennis Raper – chain-saw carving MH builder’s foreman – has been a particular hit, come see why!  

Share these MHLivingNews videos with your customers, local media,Realtors ® in your market and residents.  Client companies and non-clients alike are telling us these stories are helping them close sales with customers ‘on the fence,’ as well as are bringing in customers they never saw before.  That in itself is good news for MH.

Enjoy the week that was, via the links to stories you can click through to, below.

On a personal note, Matthew Silver, our Daily-Business-News writer’s mother passed away this weekend. Our sincere condolences to Matthew and all those touched by her death. She surpassed the century mark…Shalom…may she rest in peace.

What’s New On

Saturday 27th

Friday 26th

Thursday 25th

Wednesday 24th

Tuesday 23rd

Monday 22nd

Last Sunday Weekly Recap June 14-20th, 2015


Update on Thayer Long’s replacement at the Manufactured Housing Institute

October 26th, 2011 Comments off

MHProNews is continuing our follow up in the search for a replacement at the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) for the departing association president, Thayer Long. For a variety of reasons, including protecting sensitive sources of information, MHProNews has previously named 5 potential candidates who were named by various sources for the interim or permanent role to replace Thayer Long, while noting that 10 others have also been mentioned that have not previously been published. Five of those ten names now being disclosed include (in alphabetical order): Joe Carona, Ken Cashin, Dick Ernst, Michael O’Brien and David Rand. Some have been contacted, and have no official comment. Dick Ernst had this to say about his interest in the role, “Since I only offered to assist on an interim basis I don’t want anyone to think I want the position full time. I filled that role for 7 months previously and my offer was intended to give Joe and the Executive Committee enough time to feel good about their selection.” We asked MHI PAC Chairman, Rick Rand this question: What would your response be if you heard that Ken Cashin and Dick Ernst are being mentioned as possible candidates for the departing Thayer Long’s position at MHI? Rand replied, “Wow, both of those are extremely qualified individuals. Each has been active and deeply involved for decades in the manufactured housing industry. They have knowledge of every aspect (of the business), including finance, the political landscape and issues facing the industry In general. Both have been tremendous spokesmen on behalf of the Industry and solid MHI members. Each understand the benefits of manufactured housing, something that many politicians and regulators need enlightenment on.” We also asked Rand about other association execs around the country, and he replied: “There are some extremely qualified (state and community) association execs. This is something that the MHI Executive Committee is obviously working on, and I’m confident they have or will explore all of the best candidates.” Another industry veteran with ties to MHI shared the following comment, on condition of anonymity, but knowing the comment would be published: “Our key problems are regulatory and legislative in nature in Washington, DC. That means we need someone with the political experience necessary to get the job done. So we don’t need to hire someone that needs a long learning curve. The MHI leadership will want someone who can hit the ground running, not someone who has to take a lot of time to get up to speed on what’s going on.” MHProNews has also been told that none of the current staff are being considered as a permanent replacement to the departing Thayer Long’s position.

(Graphic credit: MHI logo)



First Nation flood victims looking to modular homes solution

September 16th, 2011 Comments off

adrian-sinclair-st martin chief CBCNewsCBCNews reports that flood evacuees from the Lake St. Martin First Nation in Manitoba band officials are in talks towards establishing a temporary village to call home.  Around 700 Lake St. Martin residents have been living in Winnipeg hotels since May, when they were evacuated from their reserve due to severe flooding.  Lake St. Martin Chief Adrian Sinclair met with Manitoba Housing about having modular homes set up on an old radar base just off Highway 6 near Gypsumville, Manitoba. “They’re kind of stressed out by the city life and the (limited hotel) space, they’re anxious to go back,” Sinclair said. With no other option being proposed by Ottawa at this time, Sinclair said he jumped at the chance to work with Manitoba Housing.

(Photo credit: CBCNews)

New modular homes under 6K? Yes, says MIT.

September 15th, 2011 Comments off

pinwheel home MITMIT reports on a project that has yielded basic new modular designed homes for under $6000.  The goal was to design a home for $1000 for the poor, or to address emergency housing and other high demand housing needs.  The idea to attempt building $1,000 homes was first conceived by Tony Ciochetti, the Thomas G. Eastman Chair at the Massachusetts Institute for Technology (MIT) Center for Real Estate.  “There is a huge proportion of the world’s population that has pressing housing needs,” says Ciochetti, who first got the idea after seeing a family of four emerge from a tiny mud hut while he was traveling through rural India. “Can you build affordable, sustainable shelter for such a large population?”  The central design concept of the Pinwheel House is the same: It has a modular layout, with rectangular room units surrounding a central courtyard space. “The module can be duplicated and rotated, and then it becomes a house,” Ying chee Chui who designed the Pinwheel House.  “The construction is easy enough, because if you know how to build a single module, you can build the whole house.”  The new design studio also aims to create homes that could be built inexpensively following natural disasters, such as the earthquake and tsunami that struck northern Japan in March. Yung Ho Chang, a professor of architectural design at MIT, explained that rebuilding in such situations often entails three stages of construction: the creation of temporary shelters, then stronger temporary homes sturdy enough for winter weather, and then permanent replacements for damaged or destroyed buildings.

(Graphic credit: MIT)

Opportunity Knocks via HUD’s Rural Innovation Fund

September 6th, 2011 2 comments

Ed-Jennings-Jr.-regional-administrator-for-Region-IV-of-the-U.S.-Department-of-Housing-and-Urban-Development-HUD-Portal.jpgHattiesburgAmerican reports that $5 million for Native American tribes who face unique housing and community development challenges has been set aside by the  Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD).  The award was part of a total of 46 for the $28 million Rural Innovation Fund, a new initiative by the Obama Administration.  Ed Jennings Jr., regional administrator for Region IV of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, said: “Despite our agency’s name, HUD’s work has reached across almost every neighborhood in our country – including rural neighborhoods.” Jennings said, “As President Obama has made clear, America will win the future by out-innovating our global competitors – and unlocking that innovation depends on revitalizing our rural communities.”  Jennings asserted that “With this new approach, communities will not only have a built-in competitive edge in attracting jobs and investment – but also the innovative solutions and partnerships needed to tackle multiple problems with a single investment.”

(Stock photo credit: HUD Portal)

Murrieta proposes new restrictions for Manufactured Homes

September 6th, 2011 Comments off

California_state_flagMurerietaPatch reports the Murrieta City Council is set to vote Tuesday on amending its regulations for manufactured and pre-HUD Code mobile homes.  “The City now desires to limit the age of a manufactured or mobile home…to promote and ensure the aesthetic quality of neighborhoods, to minimize the devaluation of communities due to upkeep and repair, and to maintain safe building standards for occupancy of manufactured homes,” states the amended development code. If ratified, permits will not be granted for manufactured homes if greater than 10 years has passed between the date of manufacture and the date of permit application for installation.  No members of the public spoke during a hearing held July 27 when city staff took the matter to the Planning Commission, which voted 5-0 to recommend the change. No members of the public spoke during the City Council’s initial review of the change on Aug. 16. If approved, the amended ordinance takes effect in 30 days and applies to new permit requests. It will not apply to legally permitted manufactured homes converting from a pier foundation to a permanent foundation. The California Legislature prohibited exclusion of manufactured homes on single-family properties in 1980.  California law allows municipalities to apply the 10-years or newer standard.

(Editor’s note: This is the type of zoning issue that bears scrutiny under the enhanced pre-emption provided by the Manufactured Housing Improvement Act of 2000 (MHIA 2000) is supposed to prevent.  Contact MHARR in Washington, DC for details on the MHIA 2000).

(Graphic credit: CA flag, Wikimedia Commons)

Epoch’s MOD, the Solar Decathlon at the National Mall

September 6th, 2011 Comments off

Epoch_Homes_Modular creditsConcordMonitor reports that Epoch Homes, in collaboration with two Massachusetts colleges, will be part of the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) 2011 Solar Decatholon 4D Home.  Built to “Passiv Haus” specifications, the home is designed for affordability, comfort and will create more energy than it uses. Epoch CEO John Ela said “Our employees are very excited to be working with Team Massachusetts…Seeing the student’s enthusiasm as they push the sustainability design envelope is inspiring and provides a glimpse at the future of housing technology for the next generation.” Ela said the goal is to design and build a home that not only uses no energy but also gives back to the grid. To do that, the 1,000-square-foot home will be outfitted with super-insulated walls and windows, making it virtually air-tight. Another unique feature is the flexible floor plan with movable interior walls, Ela said. Epoch, the Massachusetts College of Art and Design Department of Architecture and the University of Massachusetts Lowell College of Engineering who are working together as “Team Massachusetts” to develop the 2011 Solar Decathlon 4D Home, which will be on display at the National Mall in Washington DC between Sept. 23 and Oct. 2. The team finished the house in about three weeks. When the competition is over, the home will go to a family in Maine.

(Graphic credit: Team Massachusetts and MNN)

Transitions: Steven J. Bromley, R.I.P.

August 24th, 2011 Comments off

Tombstones_-_wikimedia_commonsRutlandHearald reports that Steven James Bromley, age 61, of North Charleston, S.C., died Saturday, August 20th, 2011, at his residence. He was the owner of Sea Island Building Systems Inc., Beaufort, S.C.; salesman with Highland Home Brokers Inc., Charleston, S.C.; owner of Vermont Precision Products; owner of Metronics Inc., Manchester, N.H.; and owner of Ocean Industries Inc. He served his country in the United States Army. Steve was a general contractor for the State of South Carolina.  He was a past president of the Beaufort Chapter of the South Carolina Manufactured Housing Institute from 2000-2004. He was also on the board of directors of Modular Construction Committee. Steve was a licensed pilot who loved flying. He enjoyed deep sea fishing and golfing. Most of all, he loved his wife, his children and his  grandchildren. Funeral services will be at 11:00 a.m. on Friday, August 26th, 2011, at Carolina Memorial Funeral Home Chapel, 7113 Rivers Ave., North Charleston, SC 29406.

(file photo credit: Wikimedia Commons)

Hummers becoming Modular Homes? Yup.

July 28th, 2011 Comments off

hummer-home-modular-design TruckTrendTruckTrend reports architects Craig Hodgets and HsinMing Fung have turned Hummer sheet metal parts into a modular home. The iconic image of wasteful consumerism from the 90s and 00s could now become an environmentally friendly recycled HummerHaus. Eight Hummer H2 body shells serve as the walls around a steel framed home.

(Photo credit: TruckTrend)