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Posts Tagged ‘Nevada’

The Ultimate Bad Actor? A Smell Test

March 7th, 2017 1 comment
TheUltimateBadActorASmellTestcreditNews4-postedtothedailybusinessnewsmhpronewsmhlivingnews

The storage container that houses the sewage tank. Credit: News 4.

The majority of manufactured home community owners strive to run clean, safe communities and adhere to all of the rules.

Occasionally, a bad actor shows up. In this case though, the bad actor stinks.

Literally.

Glen Highfield, owner of the Crystal Peak Mobile Home Park in Verdi, Nevada is under investigation for dumping raw sewage into a ditch that led to the nearby Truckee River.

According to News 4, a resident of the community caught the activity on video in February, which involved a hose dumping what he suspected was sewage into a drainage ditch.

Fresh water that smells like (expletive),” said the resident, while recording the activity.

The resident then proceeded to follow a hose which was dumping the substance into a stream to its source, a giant metal shipping container.

Show you right where it connects to which is this septic tank, he’s polluting the water,” said the resident.

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Verdi, Nevada in red. Credit: Google.

A complaint and cease and desist order has been issued to Highfield, from the Bureau of Water Pollution Control with the Nevada Division of Environmental Protection. In it, the state says that Highfield installed an illegal, above ground tank to hold sewage from most of the 38 homes in the community.

Investigators found that the area was saturated, meaning that sewage was pumped into the tank, which was not meant to hold fluids.

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Joe Maez. Credit: LinkedIn.

Whenever you’re dealing with raw sewage, you’re always dealing with a human health issue, so you’re dealing with concerns with public health exposure to public pathogens and bacteria,” said Joe Maez, Bureau of Water Pollution Control Engineer.

Other residents of Crystal Peak say that Highfield dumped sewage on a regular basis, but Highfield, via phone, said that the dumping has only happened once.

According to the state, they can’t be sure that’s the case.

While the video only shows the one alleged violation, the state is uncertain of how much sewage was actually disposed of, and for how long.

That unknown has neighbors who are located downstream very concerned.

Kind of disappointing. It’s really gross that somebody would do that out here,” said Dirk Maxwell.

Maez says that the bureau has ordered Highfield to stop pumping sewage into the ground, dismantle the storage tank and clean up the ground.

We’re working with the mobile home park manager to make sure the area is basically cordoned off from public access. We’re disinfecting the spill site with in this case lime to kill all the pathogens,” said Maez.

Highfield faces stiff fines if he does not rectify the situation, and come up with a plan to disconnect the tank. If he doesn’t do so by March 17th, he faces a $25,000 per day fine. ##

 

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RC Williams for Daily Business News, MHProNews.

 

 

Submitted by RC Williams to the Daily Business News, MHProNews

 

 

 

 

State Makes Move to Combine Housing Divisions

February 14th, 2017 Comments off
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Nevada State Capitol Building, Carson City. Credit: Wikipedia.

In the state of Nevada, the Department of Business and Industry presented a plan last week to combine the manufactured and state housing divisions. According to administrators, the move will improve efficiency and responsiveness to the public.

The merger would provide better service and open up resources for the agency,” said Steve Aichroth, administrator of the Nevada Division of Manufactured Housing.

Aichroth shared his comments with a Senate Finance and Assembly Ways and Means joint subcommittee. The Nevada Division of Manufactured Housing currently has 14 employees and is responsible for all manufactured homes, and insures that they are safely constructed and properly installed.

As least one member of the committee was curious.

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Senator Aaron Ford. Credit: Review Journal.

This merger has been proposed several times over the past few years. Why is it being pitched again this year?” asked Senate Majority Leader Aaron Ford (D-Las Vegas).

The timing is right. It’s the right thing to do for good government,” said Bruce Breslow, director of the Department of Business and Industry

According to the Review Journal, the manufactured housing division also helps resolve consumer and landlord-tenant complaints, and administers a program to help low-income residents pay for rental spaces in mobile home parks.

That program is currently funded through a $12 annual per-space fee collected from manufactured home communities.

The meeting provided a brief overview of the agency’s funding request, but the subcommittee will dive more deeply into the housing division’s various budget accounts at future meetings.

And for one of the committee members, that deep dive is important.

I want a bill detailing how the combined divisions would work before budget action is taken,” said Assemblywoman Teresa Benitez-Thompson (D-Reno).

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For more on the quality of modern manufactured housing, including record low complaint levels for quality, click here or on the photo above. ##

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RC Williams, for Daily Business News, MHProNews.

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

As Community Floods, Residents Prepare to Leave

February 10th, 2017 Comments off
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Residents at Balls Ferry Fishing Resort & Mobile Home Park wading through flood waters. Credit: Record-Searchlight.

The residents of Balls Ferry Fishing Resort & Mobile Home Park in Anderson, California, were dealt a blow by heavy rains this week, which caused the nearby Sacramento River to crest and flood the community.

According to the Record-Searchlight, heavy rain slammed into the area on Monday and into Tuesday, flooding countless areas throughout Shasta County, including the community.

 

I slept in this morning and management notified us the water level was coming up and we should get ready to leave just in case,” said resident Jonathan Williams.

Water continued to creep up to the skirting of at least a dozen homes, rising 14 inches in less than 12 hours.

I’ve never seen it do this,” said Richard Bremer, 75, who has lived in the community for about 11 years. His home was safe from the flooding, just a few feet from the water’s edge.

It crested one time about 10 years ago but not like this.

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Credit: Record-Searchlight.

Even with sandbags lining the entrances of most homes in the community, some still had damage.

For Williams, whose home sits at a high point away from the floodwaters, he said that management has made a real effort to help residents out.

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Credit: KRCR.

I’ve lived in a lot of trailer parks [sic],” said Williams.

This park [sic], because of management’s efforts and the owner’s efforts, is a really tight-knit community.

Neighbors also pitched in on Tuesday, helping those who could move their homes and belongings away from floodwaters to higher ground.

When this started happening, a lot of people don’t have trucks that will pull their unit, their RVs. So it’s kind of important we all pull together,” said Williams.

We’re kind of like a family here. It’s not a trailer park [sic], it’s a family park [sic].”

Heavy rain is in the forecast for the area through Saturday, with 24 areas under advisories, watches or warnings for flooding. Winter storms in the region have delivered heavy rains and flooding from the San Francisco Bay Area to the Nevada state line. ##

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RC Williams, for Daily Business News, MHProNews.

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

Carson Approved by Senate Committee, Provides View on MH

January 24th, 2017 Comments off
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Ben Carson taking the oath at his confirmation hearing. Credit: Newsmax.

The Senate Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs Committee has unanimously approved Dr. Ben Carson for Secretary of Housing and Urban Development (HUD.) His nomination now heads to the full Senate for a vote.

Manufactured housing also took center stage, as the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) tells MHProNews that Senator Dean Heller (R-Nevada) asked Dr. Carson to describe in writing his view of the role of manufactured housing in the provision of affordable housing in rural areas.

 

I do see manufactured housing playing an important role in providing affordable housing in rural areas. I think it’s important to ensure HUD’s policies promote access to this valuable resource,” said Carson.

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Senator Dean Heller. Official photo.

After the vote by the senate, Carson will inherit an agency with 8,300 employees and a budget of about $47 billion.

According to WWLP, Committee Chairman Michael Crapo of Idaho praised Carson and his impressive career.

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Senator Michael Crapo. Credit: Wikipedia.

HUD will benefit from having a secretary with a different perspective and a diverse background,” said Crapo.

The committee advanced Carson’s nomination in a simple voice vote without major opposition from Senate Democrats, who are fighting other appointees of President Trump.

Senator Sherrod Brown of Ohio, the leading Democrat on the panel, said he was supporting Carson because of his commitments to address lead hazards, uphold fair housing laws and advocate for rental assistance, despite his reservations.

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Senator Sherrod Brown. Official photo.

I would not have chosen him because of his lack of experience and his often troubling public statements over the last three years,” said Brown.

But despite my reservations and my disagreements with some of his positions, I’ll give Dr. Carson the benefit of the doubt.”

Prior to the vote, Brown proposed unsuccessfully that the committee begin requiring Cabinet-level nominees to submit three years of tax returns before confirmation hearings.

Republicans opposed the change.

Our extensive coverage on the nomination and confirmation of Dr. Ben Carson includes four former HUD Secretaries endorsing Carson and an open letter from MHProNews and MHLivingNews Publisher L.A. “Tony” Kovach.

The letter from Kovach is linked here. ##

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RC Williams, for Daily Business News, MHProNews.

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

Upscale Prefab Home Showcased in the Desert

December 19th, 2016 Comments off
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Credit: Marmol Radzinder.

LA-based design studio Marmol Radzinder recently shared images of their Las Vegas, Nevada prefab home completed in 2009.

The home, on a hillside location overlooking the city, consists of 36 prefabricated steel frame modules, which were assembled off-site while concurrently the foundation work being done on-site. This combination cut the total construction time to 12 weeks.

Another unique feature to the home is that it is partially buried in the ground, which allows it to take advantage of the earth’s naturally cool thermal mass, and thus helps insulate the home.

Deep patios also support control of the amount of direct sunlight hitting the interior.

The 18,000 square foot home includes four bedrooms and five bathrooms, a spa, pool, a series of partially covered and uncovered patios and courtyards.

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Credit: Marmol Radzinder.

12′ by 12′ modules was not only a cost effective solution for the construction but also provided Marmol Radzinder to play with indoor and outdoor spaces, consistently blending both throughout the house,” a statement from the company said.

A tiled deck that spans out onto a large central courtyard ensures natural light and ventilation to every room in the house, and louvered roofs that cover outdoor terraces also function as shading devices for the glass walls.

The living area combines a standard 12-foot module with another partial module making 15-foot tall ceilings that provide expansive views.

The Daily Business News has featured the work of Marmol Radzinder in the past, including their nod to lead the architecture design for eleven new manufactured homes that were showcased by the city of Santa Monica, California as examples of green technology applied to manufactured housing. That story is linked here. ##

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RC Williams, for Daily Business News, MHProNews.

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

Residents Forced to Move Due to Rezoning

November 8th, 2016 Comments off
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Melrose Mobile Home Park. Credit: TWC News.

Residents of the Melrose Mobile Home Park will have to move.

According to TWC News, city leaders in Wilmington, North Carolina are moving forward with a plan to rezone parts of Wrightsville Avenue.

Officials said the zoning became necessary due to continuous population growth. The city plans to designate the site mixed-use, with both business and residential units.

City officials told TWC News they are working to increase access to affordable housing in Wilmington, but many residents are concerned.

It is all about money. At Wrightsville Beach they want this property so they can zone it so they can build more rich condos here,” said park resident Rhonda Poythress.

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Rhonda Poythress. Credit: TWC News.

But it is just putting so many people out. Not to mention the elderly people who can’t get out to look for a place or pack their stuff up and move it. Some of them don’t even have family here; that’s what’s really breaking my heart.

North Carolina state law only requires residents to be given 180 days notice to vacate a community. While some states require relocation assistance for displaced residents, North Carolina has no such provision.

Residents have been given until the end of March to vacate the property.

The Daily Business News has covered a number of rezoning cases recently, including Boulder City, Nevada and Aurora, Colorado.

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Melrose Mobile Home Park. Credit: TWC News.

The MH Industry Speaks 

Jim Ayotte, executive director of the Florida Manufactured Housing Association (FMHA), speaking about a similar case told MHProNewsA community owner shouldn’t be compelled to close a community without regard for homeowners.jimayottecreditmhpronewsusersrcdesktoppaulbradleycredtimhpronewsstanthonycasehighlightsbattleovercommunityownersrightsvsresidentsrights-dailybusinessnews

Ayotte explained some of the various stress points that are often at play, including local governments that have limited ability in their budgets to provide affordable housing.  Yet, local governments often try to impose measures that force property owners to act contrary to their property rights.

This is unfair to the private sector and quite frankly, should be unconstitutional,” Ayotte said.

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Jay Hamilton.

As MH association directors, we support a property owner’s rights to buy, sell and make a profit at any time,Jay Hamilton, of the George Manufactured Housing Association told MHProNews.

What we do hope for is that the MH Community owner does it ethically, which is usually the case.

The community owner should help minimize the impact by working with local government and social service agencies to identify alternative housing options,” Ayotte said, adding that he has seen a number of examples of community closures where owners, residents and local officials worked successfully together. Ayotte’s full comments about the matter are linked here. ##

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RC Williams, for Daily Business News, MHProNews.

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

City Council Approves Rezoning of Manufactured Home Community

October 29th, 2016 Comments off
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Boulder City Mobile Home Park. Credit: KTNV

The Boulder City, Nevada City Council has unanimously approved the request of developer Randy Schams to rezone 7.33 acres of land he owns in the city to a multi-home residential area.

A number of regular Daily Business News readers may recognize Schams’ name, as part of our coverage on the Boulder City Planning Commission vote on the issue last month.

Schams purchased the property, known as the Boulder City Mobile Home Park. out of bankruptcy last November, and had been working to clean up the community, with a plan to turn it into 19 single story townhomes.

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Boulder City Planning Commission, Randy Schams 2nd from left. Credit: Boulder City Beat

The planning commission unanimously approved the request on September 21st, setting the stage for a city council decision.

Given the location of the property, Brok Armantrout, director of community development and other community members felt that the land should have a commercial designation.

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Brok Armantrout. Credit: bcnv.org.

We have asked the developer to change the designation to commercial, but he felt that a commercial property was not a viable option with the Interstate 11 coming,” said Armantrout.

According to the Boulder City Review, Schams insisted that “the mobile home park [sic] be rezoned as a residential area and not a commercial area” despite the pleas.

I didn’t have an issue here until recently because I was happy that the park [sic] was getting cleaned up,” said Boulder City resident Kevin Tibbs.

But after a lot of thought I think the only reasonable designation for the land is commercial just like everywhere else along the highway. Residential does not belong on this highway; we know that because of the condition of the park [sic] when the owner bought it. Please urge the developer to change his residential designation.

The city had a plan to make the area commercial and now they are just throwing it out to appease one person,” said resident Tracy Folda.

The city council and the planning commission disagreed, citing that the area has been a manufactured home community since the late 1950s.

Why is the best use of this land commercial if it has never been commercial?” Councilman Duncan McCoy asked.

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Duncan McCoy. Credit: bcnv.org

I have no problem with this project; people have been griping about the quality of homes in that area for 28 years and I am not persuaded we need the area for commercial lots when not all of our current lots are filled.

With the new Interstate 11 bypass coming to the area, planning commission member Glenn Leavitt and councilwoman Peggy Leavitt agreed that a residential designation was acceptable, as some business will likely shut down once the bypass is complete.

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Peggy Leavitt. Credit: bcnv.org.

We can ignore the elephant in the room or go for it head on, but the hard truth is that some businesses will fail when the bypass shows up,” commissioner Leavitt said. “We agreed with a residential designation because people were demanding more affordable housing and because commercial businesses that move in there could fail.

We have taken a lot of heat because there is not enough affordable housing in the city and this appeals to me because it is affordable housing,” councilwoman Leavitt said.

One councilman had a slightly different take.

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Cam Walker. Credit: bcnv.org.

I like the residential idea because it would not be a trailer park [sic] anymore,” said councilman Cam Walker.

Randy Schams echoed Walker’s sentiment.

I have been building here for 20-plus years and I have never heard one positive thing about that trailer park [sic],” said Schams. “I am just trying to make it more appealing and with affordable housing.

The council expressed issues surrounding limited access to and from the property, but did not take any action.

According to the Boulder City Review, with the rezoning designation approved, residents of the community will be ordered to leave by a designated date given by the developer. ##

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(Editor’s Note: while some believe that manufactured home communities are havens of crime, the story linked here has a downloadable report, authored by a university professor, that demonstrates the contrary is true).

(Image Credits are as shown above.)

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RC Williams, for Daily Business News, MHProNews.

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

Boulder City Planning Commission Approves Rezoning Of Mobile Home Park

September 30th, 2016 Comments off
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Boulder City Mobile Home Park. Credit: KTNV

Plans to transform what the Boulder City Review called a “blighted mobile home park” (sic) into townhouses came before the city’s planning commission.

The plan to transition the Boulder City Mobile Home Park into a townhome community were unanimously approved by the town’s commission on September 21st, with Chairman Jim Giannosa excusing himself due to a conflict of interest.

I’m glad to see it cleaned up and would like to see residential [zoning], Jan Rowe, who lives across the street from the community. “Going residential would be very beneficial to the city,she said.

The community is one four properties with manufactured homes in that general vicinity.

Randy Schams, president of RPS Homes, purchased the property out of bankruptcy in November. His plan is to build affordable residences. According to KTNV News, Schams also sits on the Planning Commission.

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Boulder City Planning Commission, Randy Schams 2nd from left. Credit: Boulder City Beat

Jackie Schams, Randy’s daughter and the manager of the community, said they envision building 19 single-story townhomes, with four units per building.

Currently, the Boulder City Mobile Home Park has allotments for 91 residential manufactured homes. Since taking ownership of the property, the Schams have been focused on cleaning up the location, which was affected by crime and drug issues.

Crime and MHCs?

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Todd Lamb, Lamb Investments.

Sure, there is more crime in certain demographics, certain neighborhoods, certain sides of towns, etc.,” said Todd Lamb to MHProNews. Lamb is a prior chairman of the Texas Manufactured Housing Association, who also owns land-lease communities.

But manufactured home communities that are well managed or in nicer sides of towns have little to no crime, while those that don’t get the proper attention may tend to have more criminal activity,” Lamb said.

I’ve seen a lot of things I never planned to see, Jackie Schams said describing the drug dealers she has had to evict. It’s been an emotional process.

Boulder City Chief of Police Tim Shea says his department sees the difference.

There is a significant reduction in calls for service since Schams took control,” said Shea.

Through the transition to a new owner, some tenants claim that they have been forced out by Schams.

Former resident David Craig claims he and other residents were evicted from the park on April 12th because they complained of unfair conditions. Craig told KTNV that he refused to pay rent until his utilities were fixed.

There’s also a February 26th video that Craig posted to YouTube that he claims is one of many instances of harassment from Schams since late December.

It’s unfair,” said Craig. “I’ll be moving out of state because of this.”

According to KTNV, upon further investigation they discovered that Schams is not legally responsible for fixing trailers. The sale gives him rights over the land and utilities and utility payments are up to date.

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Sandy Sessions speaks to KTNV. Credit: KTNV

Randy is really cleaning this place up, said resident Sandy Sessions. It’s sad, a lot of people have left but they didn’t pay their rent. Sessions shared that she plans to stay. ##

(Editor’s Note: while some believe that manufactured home communities are havens of crime, the story linked here has a downloadable report, authored by a university professor, that demostrates the contrary is true).

(Image Credits are as shown above.)

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RC Williams, for Daily Business News, MHProNews.

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

 

 

 

 

 

Underwater Mortgages Gradually Decrease

January 9th, 2014 Comments off

Increasingly, more mortgage borrowers are rising to the water’s surface instead of being underwater. According to RealtyTrac, 19 percent of all homes with mortgages were “deeply underwater,” meaning they owed at least 25 percent more on their mortgages than their homes are worth in December, a total of 9.3 million properties. That’s a drop from the 10.9 million properties in the same position last January, accounting for 26 percent of all homes with mortgages. The increase of nearly 14 percent in home prices year-over-year through October has added thousands of dollars to the average value of a U. S. Home, as CNNMoney informs MHProNews. However, Daren Blomquist of RealtyTrac says the danger still has not ended for many people. “There are still millions of homeowners who are in such a deep hole that it will take years for them to regain their equity. The longer these homeowners remain in a negative equity position, the more likely that foreclosure will become the path of least resistance for them,” he noted. The states with the highest percentages of “deeply underwater” homes include Nevada (38%), Florida (34%), Illinois (32%) and Michigan (31%).

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Invitation and 2014 Louisville Manufactured Housing Show Updates

December 10th, 2013 Comments off

H:\1 SK MHMSM\1 DBN\kmhi-ky-manufactured-housing-institute-reception-mixer-2014-louisville-show-posted-daily-business-news-mhpronews-com-.pngPre-registrations for the 2014 Louisville Manufactured Housing Show are up over 50% over the same time frame as last year. So state the facts supplied by Show Ways Unlimited, who manage the show for the Midwest Manufactured Housing Federation (MMHF).

Show Chairman Ron Thomas, Sr. reports that in 2013, “Louisville in 2013 we had 1370 builder/developers, retailers, community and owners/operators, representing 573 different companies who attended.”

If that 50% increase in registrations for the industry’s largest event trend holds, that would mean that over 2,000 attendees would arrive in Louisville in 2014. Combined with exhibitors, it could yield a total attendance of over 3,000, compared to some 830 that go to the Manufactured Housing Institute’s (MHI’s) fine annual Congress and Expo in Las Vegas, Nevada.

“It is an interesting comparison, but frankly it’s not exactly apples to apples.” said L. A. “Tony” Kovach, industry veteran and point man for the online promotion for the Louisville Show.

“Louisville will have 48 new model homes on display.” Kovach explained. “These decorated models will include manufactured homes and modular homes. MHC owner/operators will find Community Series Homes (CSH) on display. Retailers and builder/developers will see residential style and entry level multi-sectional and single section homes. MHI’s annual Vegas event is terrific, I love to go there too. Both Louisville and MHI’s Congress and Expo (C&E) have educational seminars and booths. MHI’s C&E by contrast has more educational events. But having homes on display ads a very different dynamic to what happens in the climate controlled Kentucky Expo Center, where the all-indoor 2014 Louisville Show is held.”

Speaking of MHI, Kovach added that the MHI staff – including their NCC division – will be very visible at Louisville in 2014. “Dick Jennison’s and his colleagues will be co-hosting a mixer with the Kentucky Manufactured Housing Institute (KMHI). Betty Whittaker does a great job with that and combined with MHI’s presence, it ought to be terrific.”

The Manufactured Housing Association for Regulatory Reform (MHARR) members often have a private meeting during the Show.

“Norris Homes made the decision to display at the 2012 Louisville Home show after being absent for several years.” said Gary Boerner. “I can honestly say we will not be absent again. The dealer traffic was great and we were able to see and talk to prospects we might have never been exposed to.  It turned out to be a great decision on our part. We are looking forward to another successful show in 2014.”

Skyline Homes’ Terry Decio indicated they will display 4 homes in the KEC’s East Wing, next to the “Show Me the Money!” Seminar room. Enthusiasm is high, with sold out show space and the large boost in early registrations.

“The Louisville Manufactured Housing Show is an excellent showcase…With many networking opportunities and a well laid out exhibitor area, we look forward to the 2014 event as an opportunity to grow our manufactured housing business.” said Sherrie Clevenger, NADAguides. ##

For more information,

please see Show Chairman, Ron Thomas Sr.’s report:

http://www.MHProNews.com/home/featured-articles/december-2013/138-general-manufactured-housing-industry-topics/6692-why-will-the-louisville-2014-show-you-the-money

And/Or go to:

http://www.LouisvilleShow.com for a complete list of free business building and finance seminars, networking events, exhibitors/manufacturers and KMHI-MHI mixer.

Interviews we’ve done that mention the Louisville Show include:

A Cup of Coffee with…Terry Decio

A Cup of Coffee with…Wally Comer

A Cup of Coffee with…Barry Noffsinger

A Cup of Coffee with…Dick Ernst