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PBS & NPR Reporting on Manufactured Housing News, Pulling Back the Veil

January 29th, 2019 Comments off

 

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For some years, PBS and NPR have covered numerous stories that directly connect to the manufactured housing industry. The screen captures further below will reflect just two of several.

 

 

To be polite, those reports have not been flattering for the manufactured home industry.

To be blunt, those publicly-funded (in part) reports have arguably been a factor why millions of Americans don’t consider manufactured homes or manufactured home community living.

 

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Some of those PBS and NPR programs have been deemed spin, or ‘hit pieces’ by professionals within the manufactured housing industry.  Of course, that viewpoint depends on the reader’s/viewer’s perspective.  For example, some consumer groups cheer PBS or NPR reports that manufactured housing industry pros groan about.

 

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It will be recalled, for example, that the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) asked Dick Ernst, an association award winner, to speak on behalf of the industry in a PBS news item by Stephen Fee.  See that screen capture below.

 

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Note that MHProNews’ reports and analysis for that search rank immediately below PBS’?  This is a tiny example of why then Tim Williams MHI Chairman was arguably right in saying there is a good case to be made to respond to every problematic report, even though MHI themselves routinely failed to do that…

unless the matter involves a mainstream report about Clayton Homes or their affiliated lenders.  MHI seems willing to respond to certain Clayton-criticizing articles — but that’s not the focus for this analysis, PBS and NPR are.

Starting with the headline, the PBSBad Bargain” report was about financing for manufactured homes, casting the industry’s lending in a negative light.  PBS and NPR have each done news reports on the HUD Code manufactured home industry, which in hindsight, have regularly been unfavorable.

 

 

Which begs the question, why?

When there is an affordable housing crisis, why is publicly supported radio and television often seemingly slanted against the interests of manufactured homes?

As an email to a public official from MHProNews’ publisher stressed today, a proper full implementation of existing laws would arguably save HUD billions a year, while fueling up to $2 trillion dollars a year in new economic growth, essentially without taxpayer funding being needed.

 

Upcoming Exclusive

In a fresh Daily Business News (DBN) on MHProNews  readers learned that no less than 10 positive reports were produced about manufactured homes and manufactured home living last year. Actually, there were far more, but those 10 cited were routinely from third-party groups, such as Bloomberg, the Urban Institute, or the National Association of Realtors. That same DBN report said that positive third-party studies about HUD Code manufactured housing have been going on for no less than 20 years.

So, if third-party researchers find manufactured homes to be so positive, why has NPR or PBS focused on seemingly negative items?

This report will begin the process of pulling back the curtain or veil on that question, which is timely, as an upcoming exclusive report planned for tomorrow will make clear.

But a new, related analysis and fact-check report of NPR will reveal some surprises tomorrow.

Let’s follow the facts, claims, and the money-trail on PBS, NPR, the Corporation for Public Broadcasting (CPB), private funding and what others have said about these quasi-public media sources.

But first, let’s set the table.

 

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Public TV, Radio, Digital Print – Background, Facts, and the Money Trail

PBS is a private, nonprofit media enterprise owned by its member public television stations. PBS distributes programming to nearly 350 locally owned and operated public television stations across the country and is funded principally by these member stations and by CPB.” says the Corporation for Public Broadcasting FAQ page. 

Wikipedia says that “PBS is funded by member station dues, the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, corporate contributions, National Datacast, pledge drives, private foundations and individual citizens. All proposed funding is subjected to a set of standards to ensure the program is free of influence from the funding source.” Seriously? If some mega-donor has an obvious interest in a news item, is the seasoned thinking viewer supposed to believe that donors have zero influence over how a story is covered?

Forbes said on Oct 16, 2011 that “NPR and PBS offer some of the very best news and programming on television and radio today, even if some shows slant to the left.”

By contrast, TruthOut said in an article entitled “The Corporate Dictatorship of PBS and NPR” that “PBS is blowing it, and their decision not to air a documentary on the Koch brothers is pretty horrifying proof of it.”

The Corporation for Public Broadcasting (CPB) receives federal funding for public media, which also receives private donor support.

CPB invests limited funds in the production of innovative, diverse content that aligns with public media’s mission—to provide universal access to high-quality educational programming in the United States, especially to underserved audiences,” says the CPB’s website.

Stations leverage each $1 of federal funding to raise over $6 from other sources — including state and local governments, philanthropic foundations, private businesses, and universities — a tremendous return on the taxpayer investment,” per the CPB.

Individual contributions are the largest source of revenue for public media entities, which primarily come through membership donations to local stations. CPB also supports local public media stations. In fact, by law, 95 percent of CPB’s appropriation from the federal government goes to support local television and radio stations, programming, and improvements to the public broadcasting system.” The CPB website also says that “The programs that you hear and see on your favorite public broadcasting stations come from a variety of sources including PBS, NPR, American Public Media, the National Minority Consortia, local stations such as WGBH, WNET, WBEZ and WNYC…”

 

Initial Takeaways?

Forbes is considered a right of center media outlet. TruthOut is from the opposite end of the spectrum, self-described progressive media.  But the reality is that you can find conservative criticism of NPR and PBS, and left-wing praise too.

 

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But what initially emerges are these points.

  • There are absolutely those voices – including from mainstream media – the believe that PBS and NPR do have a bias, and that they can be influenced by their donors.
  • As MHProNews has noted for years, these outlets seem to have a bias against manufactured housing professionals but are okay – for example – with Resident Owned Communities (ROCs).
  • The screen captures above reflect what other recent MHProNews reports have documented, that the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) or the Berkshire brands in manufactured housing have not defended the industry from negative attacks that even Tim Williams/21st President and CEO said could make sense.

With this backdrop, tomorrow we plan an eye opening report that may rock some boats in the manufactured housing world.  If you aren’t already on our industry-leading emailed headline news updates, you can sign up at the link below.

 

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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.

 

One point that billionaires Warren Buffett and Donald J. Trump – before becoming president – both said in their own words was this.  It pays to know as much as you can about your own profession, said billionaire Trump.   Buffett said he reads 5 to 6 hours a day. Both believe it pays to know about the various forces that impact or influence your profession.

So, for savvy professionals, it pays to read and share with your circle reports like this – and the revelations that will follow tomorrow, as we continue to pull back the curtain on PBS, NPR and how it influences manufactured housing. Stay tuned.

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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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?

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

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Triad Financial Services Recent Reporting on Manufactured Home Lending

October 26th, 2018 Comments off

 

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Triad Financial Service (TFS or Triad) formally closed on their acquired by ECN Capital on December 29, 2017.  For nearly 60 years, Triad has served the manufactured home industry, and other lenders.

 

Our prior reports on that are linked further below, under related reports.

 

TriadFinacialServicesLogoSecuredConsumerLoanPortfoliosSnapshotManufacturedHomeLendingKeyHighlightsTriadLogoECNCapitalLogoMHProNews

 

The screen captures that follow are from Triad’s second quarter reports, part of the larger ECN Capital quarterly reporting.

 

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ECN has been part of the Daily Business News on MHProNews’ evening market report since the Triad acquisition, along with other manufactured housing industry connected publicly traded operations.

 

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Last night’s evening manufactured home industry stocks and market report is linked here.  The full ECN Capital 2nd quarter report – which includes the slides shown, but others as well – is linked here as a download.

Note that their loan performance data should a good reason for others – including, but not limited to, the Government Sponsored Enterprises – examining the manufactured home lending market to go beyond looking. “We Provide, You Decide.” © ## (News, analysis, and commentary.)

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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.

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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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“A Nation of Laws” – Donald Tye, Jr. Affordable Housing, and Manufactured Homes

 

 

 

Friday the 13th, Mobile Homes, Fires, Tornado Magnets and the 2020 U.S. Census

July 13th, 2018 Comments off
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What if the HUD Code or ANSI labels are missing? Or what if it is a pre-HUD Code mobile home? How will the media report this? 

It’s what award-winning manufactured home industry professional Marty Lavin, speaking tongue in cheek, called the industry’s “other image campaign.”

 

It’s what Darren Krolewski, now Co-President of MHVillage, said is part of the ongoing wave of bad news in mainstream media about “mobile homes” that seems to outweigh the good news about manufactured housing.

Among the most common mainstream news items related to factory-built homes in America are stories about mobile homes that catch fire.

Some mainstream news items are stories about arson. Others are kitchen fires, or the cause of the blaze may have been a careless smoker. But whatever the cause, because of the nomenclature issue with mainstream media, the false impression is left that manufactured homes are more susceptible to fire than conventional housing.

Another common local news topic, especially after the start of the tornado and hurricane seasons, are windstorms and “mobile homes.”

Because of the internet, every local story is carried globally. That means that people throughout the U.S. that are researching or shopping for a home, get the false impression that caused Ohio’s Governor John Kasich to mistakenly target manufactured housing for fire hazards.

While the Ohio Manufactured Homes Association (OMHA), and their state’s resident group lost that battle, the OMHA’s routine push-back may have been a factor in rising new manufactured home shipments there, when two other states in their region are seeing declining new manufactured home shipments.

Alabama and Florida are among the state associations that have pushed-back on the problematic narrative of “mobile homes,” manufactured homes, and windstorms.

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How many know that manufactured homes are as safe as a conventional house? It’s older mobile homes that routinely create problematic news. Which is why both data collection and nomenclature are key issues to advance manufactured housing education, which will boost sales naturally, Fixing the Census on this issue can help. 

 

The Common Denominators, Root Issues?

What are the common denominators in these vexing mainstream news stories?

Two factors, one is nomenclature/accurate data. That challenge should be tackled at both the local market – the state level, and nationally – as our recent Daily Business News article spotlighted at the link below. As with any linked article, that can be read later for greater depth of understanding and more related facts.

Proper Definitions, Mobile Home, Manufactured Home, or Trailer House – Civil Rights, Respect, Public Policy, & Value Issues

 

But the other is an issue of data collection. That’s where the U.S. Census Bureau comes in.

The Census Bureau provides often useful data for manufactured housing, because it reveals the substantial price savings over conventional construction.

But the flip side of the Census Bureau is what storm researchers have told MHProNews and MHLivingNews.

The Census Bureau’s database needs to collect accurate counts of how many manufactured home are in use, as well as how many pre-HUD Code mobile homes are in use.

NPR-Tornado Hits Mobile Home, Fact Check-Why Terminology Matters to Manufactured Housing Industry, Home Owners, Weather, News Pros

Doing that, say storm researchers, would aid them in their impact models, which currently – and unfairly – lump pre-HUD Code mobile homes in with post June, 15, 1976 built HUD Code manufactured homes.

Letters to congressional representatives, U.S. Senators and other public officials asking for this bureaucratic change is long overdue, and a necessary common-sense step that would arguably save taxpayer dollars over time.  Why?  Because more manufactured home sales would arguably reduce the numbers of subsidized housing units needed.

Having the Census Bureau make a change in their data collection is an example of an issue that is ideally handled by state or national post-production associations. So those who are members of such groups should be asking them to engage in this.

It is a fact that more mobile homes burn more than manufactured homes.  More pre-HUD Code mobile homes blow away than manufactured homes. The success of the quality and safety of the HUD Code is undermined by poor data, and poor nomenclature.

Keeping the Home Fires from Burning: Fire Safety and the Modern Manufactured Home

The solution is good information and media engagement.

That requires pro-active efforts now to make this part of the rapidly-approaching 2020 Census. It is an opportunity for associations to do what Nathan Smith said is necessary, namely, to be pro-active.

On this Friday the 13th, its an apt time to change decades of often avoidable misfortune into potentially millions of more new manufactured home sales, all by taking common sense steps now. Each manufactured home professional, advocate, and investor is either part of the solution, or part of the problem. “We Provide, You Decide.” © ## (News, analysis and commentary.)

 

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Related Reports:

Proper Definitions, Mobile Home, Manufactured Home, or Trailer House – Civil Rights, Respect, Public Policy, & Value Issues

 

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