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Sheila Dey, Western Manufactured Housing Communities Assoc, Tells Capitol – Manufactured Homes Could Ease Housing Crisis, Report and Analysis

March 5th, 2019 Comments off

 

 

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Sheila Dey, JD, is the Executive Director and General Counsel of the Western Manufactured Housing Communities Association, per their website. Dey is well known in many parts of the industry and leads one of the purportedly stronger and better-funded trade groups in manufactured housing.

 

To dot the i’s and t’s on the point of the clout of WMHCA, according to Charity Navigator for the most recent year available: Sacramento, CA based WESTERN MANUFACTURED HOUSING COMMUNITIES ASSOCIATION

 

Asset Amount $5,486,094
Income Amount $3,922,174
Form 990 Revenue Amount $3,861,632

 

Dey has sounded off via MHProNews previously and was referenced on the Daily Business News on MHProNews recently via a link-back to one of her commentaries.

California has one of the tightest, perhaps the worst, affordable housing needs in the nation.  The percentage of home ownership in California is lower than the nation at large, per data cited by former Governor Jerry Brown (D) in 2018.

The report was entitled, “California’s Housing Future: Challenges And Opportunities,” and was published on February 14, 2018. Here below from page 15 are key facts that the California report revealed, quoting the document linked here and also from Dey’s letter, that follows.

 

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To see the full report, click here or the graphic above.

 

Current [CA] Housing Characteristics

Housing Supply by Type and Tenure Housing type describes the type of dwelling a person resides in (single family, multifamily or other), while tenure describes whether a unit is renter- or owner-occupied.

Of the 13.85 million homes in California, 12.72 million are occupied homes and the remainder are currently vacant.xii A recent McKinsey Global Institute report found that California ranks 49th in the nation for housing units per capita with only 358 homes per 1,000 people.xiii

Of the total occupied homes, 6.91 million (54 percent) are owner-occupied and 5.81 million (46 percent) are renter-occupied.xiv

The majority of California households reside in single-family homes (65 percent), while 31 percent reside in multifamily homes. The remainder reside in other housing types, such as mobile or manufactured homes (see Figure 1.10).

 

CaliforniaHousingFutureManufacturedHomesMobileHomesDailyBusinessNEwsMHProenws

To see the full report, click here or the graphic above.

 

Alternative Housing Models That Contribute to Meeting Housing Demand Beyond traditional market-rate and deed-restricted homes, there are alternative housing models and emerging trends that can contribute to addressing home supply and affordability in California, including: manufactured housing, community land trusts, micro-units, tiny homes, single resident occupancy (SRO) dwellings, co-housing, multigenerational housing, and accessory dwelling units (also referred to as second units, in-law units, or granny flats).

 

— end of Page 15, California’s Housing Future: Challenges And Opportunities

 

With that backdrop, the Capitol Weekly published the following opinion column by Dey.  It is largely on point, and makes shares some interesting insights, and will be followed by some additional analysis and commentary. The photo shown was the featured image from her column, the Capitol Weekly logo was added to acknowledge them as the source of the column.

 

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It’s no secret that California is a very expensive place to live. California homes are being sold at two-and-half times the national average and rents are twice as much.

Perhaps, there is no greater example that the dream of home ownership is dead than a taxpayer-financed housing project in San Jose.

When the median home value in California is $600,860, living in a manufactured home is far more affordable, even with rent.

Several weeks ago, the San Jose City Council rezoned property to house residents in modified shipping containers, priced at a whopping $600,000 per unit.

Before considering unconventional forms of housing like shipping containers, our state’s political leaders should consider the benefits and affordability of manufactured homes. Manufactured home owners enjoy the same lifestyle as traditional stick-built homes, but for hundreds of thousands of dollars less.

According to the California Manufactured Housing Institute, the installation of a brand new two to three bedroom (1,700 sq. ft.) manufactured home costs approximately $142,000, and used homes are even less. According to Homes Direct, a new one-bedroom home that is three times larger than a shipping container sells for approximately $53,000.

When the median home value in California is $600,860, living in a manufactured home is far more affordable, even with rent.

If a manufactured home is located in a mobile home park, rents (like HOA fees) are assessed on the land and in most cases are reasonable, especially when they fund essential park services, such as maintenance, roads, sewer, water, landscaping and recreational amenities. The economic benefits and financial security are even greater when park owners and residents voluntarily agree to sign long-term lease agreements, which is common.

In 2018, Gov. Jerry Brown’s Department of Housing and Community Development developed a report entitled “California’s Housing Future; Challenges and Opportunities,” following a statewide listening tour soliciting public input on how to solve California’s housing crisis.

Among its recommendations was expanding financing options and reducing barriers for alternative housing models with lower production costs, such as manufactured housing. Unfortunately, the state Legislature has not acted on this recommendation, nor have cities and counties.

So, when the production of manufactured homes is experiencing a new high in the U.S since 2008, newly elected Gov. Gavin Newsom and local government must recognize the need and demonstrate the will to expand and build new manufactured housing communities, the last remaining bastions of quality, unsubsidized housing that is still affordable.

Until then, living in shipping containers may become more common, undermining the California Dream.

Ed’s Note: Sheila Dey is executive director of the Western Manufactured Housing Communities Association.

— end of Sheila Dey’s Op-Ed, found at this link here. —

 

About 21 hours ago, MHProNews asked Dey to respond to the following, with respect to her column.

There are those who say that “…you [Dey] are more secure than many of your colleagues who work for other state/regional MH associations.

That said, why is there no mention of “Enhanced Preemption” in your column today?  JD Harper, in days gone by, was one of those execs besides MHARR that used to talk about its importance. 

It can be off the record, unless you say otherwise. We’ll likely cover this either way, Thanks.”

There was no reply as of this posting to those questions.

 

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Imagine having a powerful, legal tool, and not using it? That’s a dim analogy to MHI and other industry trade groups that fail to push enhanced preemption. Its a sound argument.  MHProNews’ publisher has used it successfully.  If a non-association can make it work, why not a trade group?

Another fair question might have been, what about arguing for Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing (AFFH) as a legal path for using more manufactured homes?  To learn more about that, see the linked text-image box report, below.

Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing, a Novel Yet Proven Solution to the Affordable Housing Crisis That Will Create Opportunities, Based Upon Existing Laws

Should Dey, or another association peer, like to address the question of why “enhanced preemption” is encouraged by Mark Weiss, JD, President and CEO of the Manufactured Housing Institute, (MHI), was previously promoted by JD Harper at the Arkansas Manufactured Housing Association (AMHA), or others, but not by the industry’s association’s at large?

Since enhanced preemption is a law on the books favoring manufactured housing in zoning and placement issues, why is it rarely mentioned outside of an industry meeting room, save by MHARR, MHLivingNews, or MHProNews?  An affordable housing crisis rages.  California alone could keep numerous HUD Code builders busy, if only “enhanced preemption” was being touted loudly, proudly, and soundly.

 

 

Dramatic Reversal, City Passes Urgency Ordinance Effectively Banning Manufactured Homes, Front & Back Stories

 

Nothing will change until new approaches – coupled with proven approaches, as the report linked above reflects – are put to work. More examples and related are further below.

That’s this afternoon’s installment of manufactured housing professional focused “Industry News, Tips, and Views Pros Can Use” © where “We Provide, You Decide.” © ## (News, analysis, 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.

California Housing Crisis: Manufactured Homes Could Be Part of the Solution

As Affordable Housing Crisis Rages, New HUD Code Manufactured Housing Shipments Fall, Some States Drop 35-40 Percent

 

Two Great Laws Already on the Books NOW,  Can Unlock Billion$ Annually for Manufactured Housing Industry Businesse$, Investor$

Rent Control & MH – Politicians “Are Carpet-Bombing Our State With Regulations That Will Deliberately Destabilize The Housing Market And Leave It Obliterated”

Rumble over Anti-MH Law-State Association, Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI), Clayton Homes, and MHARR

Local Star Chambers Wage War on Affordable Housing

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

Mobile Home Burns, Woman Dies, Details At Ten – Back Story of Mobile Home Fires, Regulatory Facts

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Resident Homeowner Groups, Public Policy, Media, Manufactured Housing, Investors, and You

October 24th, 2017 Comments off

PeopleGlobeSmartPhonePixabayDailyBusinessNewsMHProNewsState associations, in places such as Ohio or Florida, have demonstrated their ability to work with resident/homeowner groups on a variety of issues.

For example, Tim Williams and Andrea Reichman with the Ohio Manufactured Home Association collaborated with resident groups in their recent battle to save their state regulatory structure, as was extensively reported on the Daily Business News.

So, the notion that resident/homeowner groups are always in opposition to business interests in manufactured housing would be an inaccurate one.

At the same time, in places such as California, industry professionals witness a routine push by some resident organizations for rent control. MHProNews covered the fight over Measure V extensively.

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Commentary on rent control via Industry Voices last year by:

and others who’ve provided expert commentary demonstrated a point made on MHProNews years earlier.

That Vexing, Controversial Rent Control Issue – The Point? 

Rent control fails everyone; residents, industry professionals, policy advocates, and those public officials who say they want to preserve affordable housing.

In fact, as the Canadian and other examples reported for years by MHProNews years before reflected, rent control results in a dramatic drop in new development, and has other negative impacts for consumers and professionals alike.

That makes Bradley’s point, that there must be a better way.

Ross Kinzler said in his commentary on Congressman Keith Elision’s bill which would impact manufactured home communities, that state and local policies are often harming affordable housing, rather than helping it.

Ishbel Dickens, NMHOA and Industry Issues – Like Rent Control

In spite of the track record of rent control failures in the U.S. and Canada, Ishbel Dickens – former executive director of the NMHOA – has not yet lived up to the challenge issued by MHProNews publisher and industry consultant, L. A. “Tony” Kovach to discuss/debate the issues that face the MH Industry.

IshbelDickensPhotoNationalManufacturedHomeOwnersAssocNMHOALogoDailyBuisnessNewsMHproNews

Home owners and professionals in most ways should share a common set of goals.

Quality affordable home ownership is what attracts and retains millions of manufactured home owners, which MHLivingNews, federal HUD Data, and third-party consumer satisfaction research has revealed are routinely proud to call their homes their own.


Dickens, as was previously reported and is reflected in the email/collage shown, suggested in writing that such a public discussion could take place, if the “seamier side” of the industry was reported (see screen capture of her email, above).

Such reports have been done for years by the Daily Business News, including the very issue that Dicken’s referenced, which few if any other’s MH Industry’s publishing have covered at all, much less as robustly.

So that assurance by Dickens to engage on behalf of her members has yet to be fulfilled by the NMHOA.

A similar point could be made about left-of-center, MHAction.

MHActionHarmsManufacturedHomeOwnersMDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

Whatever their motivations may be, attacking private capital doesn’t attract more investors to create or update properties that would provide quality manufactured home communities. To see The Road to Hell, click here.

PBS and Carla Burr

An invitation to publicly discuss via a video recorded live event has been made to the resident group leaders, as well as to the representatives of the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI).

Both those resident groups, and MHI have ducked that public video discussion/debate.

Why?

Editorially, L. A. “Tony” Kovach has argued privately and publicly with resident leaders of MHAction or NMHOA that some of their tactics and policy positions harm their own home owners, as well as the industry.

The objective research reflected by third parties would come to a similar conclusion; namely, that rent control doesn’t work as claimed.

The reasons are simple.  Rent control violates the law of supply and demand, while it changes the risk-reward matrix for owners and investors.


John Jenkins, Hurricane Irma, Manufactured Home Owner,
Community Resident, Tells His Storm Survival Story

Similar violations of economic principles don’t work for Republicans like President Richard Nixon’s wage/price controls, nor for Democrats or any others.

Like gravity, those laws as applied to rent control can seemingly be suspended for a time, but only by expending energy/cost. During and after such artificial energy/cost, price controls reduce development, forcing some community owners to redevelop.

Yet that is the very thing that Ellison’s and others claim to want to avoid.

The Carla Burr PBS interview is an example of how a left of center mainstream media outlet tilted a report in a way that harmed the image of the entire industry. Using the principle of supply and demand, doesn’t that in turn harm every manufactured home owner’s value?

The Solution Is All American

Each of those linked industry professionals cited above provides keen insights into what seemingly is a complex issue.  The bottom line should be that residents and professionals work together, and seek understanding.

Paraphrasing Sam Landy, no savvy business owner wants to raise rents at a rate that creates stress for their residents.

American principles of free enterprise, properly applied, and earnest discussions between parties that seem to disagree, are the foundation for advancing the mutual interests of home owners, home seekers, public officials, industry professionals, current and potential investors.

Rent control, doesn’t the evidence show that it has done far more harm, than the alleged good? “We Provide, You Decide.” © ## (News, Analysis.)

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

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

 

 

 

 

Rent Control-WMA Rolls out ‘No On Measure V’ Video, Talking Points

October 14th, 2016 Comments off
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Original collage credit, MHProNews – addtional logo credit: WMA. Other image credits are as shown above, and are used here under fair use guidelines.

Measure V – a proposition on the ballot in Humboldt County, California – has generated significant interest from both inside and outside the MH industry.

As Daily Business News’ Joe Dyton covered recently, Measure V proposes that:

  • Manufactured home community owners would be permitted to raise site rents once annually, and the increase would be tied to inflation via the Consumer Price Index;
  • When a home is sold or transferred, new resident site fees could only increase five percent higher than what the previous residents paid;
  • A community owner could raise rents to pay for improvements, but would first require written approval from more than 50 percent (a simple majority) of the homeowners/residents.

In a statement released this week, the Western Manufactured Housing Communities Association (WMA) is “making an effort to educate public policymakers on how mobile home parks (sic) operate and how the misapplication of rent control has contributed to California’s housing crisis.”

A public education campaign is underway by the WMA.

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Sheila Dey. Credit: WMA.

There is no question that California is one of the most expensive places to live in the country,” said Sheila Dey, Executive Director of WMA.

So when the purchase price of a mobile home (sic) can be up to 30% less than a traditional home, state and local government should be creating incentives to build more mobile home parks (sic) and not less.

WMA released a video that explains how “parks” operate and how they have become a source of quality housing for scores of people from all socio-economic backgrounds.  From frugal millionaires to the working class and all in between are living in manufactured homes.

As a example, the video showcases a community with rent control in Malibu, California, where millionaires live in beachfront properties, and for some, the properties serve as a second home.

The Daily Business News has previously covered the various opinions on Measure V, in a follow up to Dyton’s article, at this link here.

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Actress Betsy Russell’s Malibu manufactured home listed for 2 million 2 years ago, and prices are still rising in that same location. To see the photo tour of her manufactured mansion overlooking the Pacific Ocean, click the photo above.

According to the WMA, rent control is a reaction to local government’s failure to plan for their community’s future housing needs. When attainable housing is no longer accessible, politicians force “park owners” to subsidize a tenant’s housing costs, regardless of income.

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Photo above is a still from a video on the page linked above and in the text below.

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Humboldt County, CA (in red.) Credit: Wikipedia

That often leads to a reduction in park amenities and in some cases, lawsuits when site fees do not cover a communities operational costs.

In their statement, the WMA points out that California has created a regulatory environment where existing manufactured home communities are threatened by rent control ordinances that undermine a park’s economic sustainability, and cost prohibitive building regulations and fees that have stifled the construction of new parks. As a consequence, it’s been decades since a new mobilehome park (sic) has been built in California.

As the Daily Business News and ManufacturedHomeLivingNews have reported, manufactured housing presents a potential solution to the housing crisis in California and throughout the U.S. with quality homes at a lower cost that meet stringent federal standards. ##

(Editor’s Notes: The WMA’s column and resources on this issue are linked here.

  • Note too, while some use other terminology for a variety of reasons – including a number of those within the ranks for the MH Industry – as a professional publication, MHProNews strives to use the proper terminology every time, thus the (sic) inserted by RC Williams at various places above.)

(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.

Measure V – Battle Lines Drawn

October 10th, 2016 Comments off
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Collage and text credit by MHProNews. Click to see full sized image.

As the moms and pops that built our mobile home parks age out, predatory, out-of-town corporate investors have been taking over. – Measure V proponents

Once rent control is adopted, politicians will – by the tenants’ votes – be giving the landlord’s property to the tenants. It happens all the time.Sam Landy, CEO UMH Properties

These are just two of the many published perspectives over controversial Measure V – a Humboldt County, California ballot measure that proposes significant changes to the relationship between manufactured home community owners and their residents.

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Humboldt County, CA (in red.) Credit: Wikipedia

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Joe Dyton.

As Daily Business News’ Joe Dyton covered recently, Measure V proposes that:

  • Manufactured home community owners would be permitted to raise site rents once annually, and the increase would be tied to inflation via the Consumer Price Index;
  • When a home is sold or transferred, new resident site fees could only increase five percent higher than what the previous residents paid;
  • A community owner could raise rents to pay for improvements, but would first require written approval from more than 50 percent (a simple majority) of the homeowners/residents.

This has spurred a furious debate, including letters to the editor and opinion columns from both sides of the issue.

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Millionaires, such as actress Betsy Russell, are living in manufactured homes. To see a photo spread of her manufactured home which listed for 2 million dollars, click here.

Court Ruling, Views Dueling

Credit: Facebook.

Credit: Facebook.

In May, a federal jury unanimously found that the city of Carson and its rent control board violated the constitutional rights of the owner of Colony Cove — a mobile home park in Southern California,” said Doug Johnson, who is a member of Citizens Against Rent Control — NO on Measure V, in his letter to the Times-Standard.

The jury concluded that the board’s rejection of lawfully filed rent increase applications in 2007 and 2008 constituted a regulatory taking without just compensation,” Johnson wrote.  “Such government actions are barred by the Fifth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.

Johnson’s comments are, in part, a response to those of Hilary Mosher. Mosher is chair of the Humboldt Mobile Home Coalition, who was quoted in an Op-Ed in the Mad River Union, seeking to make her case for Measure V.

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Credit: HumboldtMobileHome.org

Park owners are being merciless, and in some cases, outside the law in their rush to gouge park residents in raising fees and lot rents prior to the Nov. 8 election,” Mosher alleged.

This provides us with a perfect example of why Measure V is necessary – park owners are not required to be fair with their increases and we park residents are captive and have no say about whatever they want to do to us,” Mosher continued. “One park owner in McKinleyville, who failed to give tenants adequate notice, has even gone so far as to tell them in a letter that if Measure V does not pass, he may not raise the rent! We view this as voter manipulation and intimidation.

Johnson sees the Measure V issue as a danger to taxpayers that they may not be aware of, referring to the Colony Cove case in Carson, CA.

The jury went on to award the park owner more than $3.3 million in damages. In addition to this already staggering judgment — which the taxpayers of Carson will have to pay — the court ordered that the city pay an additional $4,128,662 in prejudgment interest and attorneys’ fees. Taxpayers are now on the hook for a whopping $7,464,718 — from just one bad Rent Control Board decision,” Johnson said.

One McKinleyville resident disagrees with Johnson’s take.

In his letter, Doug Johnson made a lot of untrue statements. He gave his address as McKinleyville — he does not live in Humboldt County,” claims Roxann Souter of McKinleyville in her Times-Standard letter-to-the-editor.

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Image credits are as shown.

Administration of Measure V is paid for through fees to mobile home owners. If park owners decide to go to court they potentially are costing taxpayers money— not Measure V. He [Johnson] said Carson taxpayers will have to pay millions— not necessarily true,” Souter continued.

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Video Interview with HUD expert includes: behind-the-scenes look at construction, community and home tours – click above.

That case is being appealed and research shows that these park owner cases most often lose in the higher court, with park owners liable for fees. Johnson claims that Measure V will impact public services — he has no crystal ball to know that,” Souter said.

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Carrie Peyton Dahlberg. Credit: Mad River Union.

In her opinion piece to the Mad River Union, semi-retired journalist, landlord and volunteer for “Yes on Measure V,” Carrie Peyton Dahlberg shared a similar perspective.

For mobile home residents, the ‘free market’ is a myth. People who own mobile homes can’t pick up and leave if the park owner decides to create new fees or impose repeated rent increases. They are trapped. The only way out is to sell their home, the one asset many of them own,” said Peyton Dahlberg.

That is why, even though I’m a landlord, I collected hundreds of signatures this spring to help put Measure V on Humboldt County’s ballot. Many landlords I talked with signed the petitions,” Peyton Dahlberg wrote.

They know the difference between a tenant who is free to leave and one who is a captive renter, in a captive market. When they learned the details of Measure V, they realized it was fair to the park owners, as well as to the mobile homes owners.

A Landlord…?

The Daily Business News reached out to Peyton Dahlberg with questions related to her experience as a landlord, including whether or not she owned a manufactured home community or had friends or releatives who lived in manufactured home communities.

I will be glad to answer those questions in 2017,” she replied.

Dahlberg would not respond to a follow up.

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Credit: HumboldtMobileHome.org

Park owners in Humboldt County have been addressing the issue of alleged “excessive” rent for well over a year,” attorney C. William Dahlin told MHProNews.

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C. William “Bill” Dahlin.

However, the reality is that rents in Humboldt County are not excessive. Indeed, rents in Humboldt County mobilehome parks are exceptionally low. Do the research,” Dahlin said.

Most Park owners offer long-term leases that address and stabilize any legitimate concern about rent increases,” Dahlin explained. “A rent increase that reflects an increase in property taxes simply reflects the costs of doing business. Not one penny of such increases go to the park owner. Rather, such funds go the county for roads as well as police and fire services.”

Sheila Dey, Executive Director of the Western Manufactured Housing Communities Association told MHProNews that Doug Johnson’s statement reflected their association’s view. In addition, Dey also wrote this article on the harmful impact of Rent Control on affordable housing in California.

A Larger Problem…

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Paul Bradley. Credit: Fosters.com

I think rent control is a symptom of a larger problem.  To my eye, these stories are always about both sides doubling down politically and legally,Paul Bradley, president of Resident Owned Communities (ROCUSA) told MHProNews.

I would like to think there are alternatives that don’t rely on third-party boards and local ordinances.  I approach things with a win/win mindset, and from what I’ve seen; courts and boards seem to satisfy neither party in most cases.  A fundamentally different value proposition and mindset is required to stem the tide of rent control,” said Bradley.

UMH Properties’ president and Sam Landy sees it similarly.

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Sam Landy, UMH President and CEO.

The fact is, if we [as community owners] raise our rents too high, we will have no sales and no occupancy,said Landy. No reasonable landlord would do such a thing. Our rents have to make economic sense or we have no business. Therefore, in the long term, there is never a need for rent control.

The Daily Business News will monitor this controversial ballot measure. ##

(Editor’s Note: for a similar, related story featured in a Fox News video, please click here.  Update – WMA’s video and talking points, are linked here.)

(Image credits are as shown above.)

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RC Williams, for Daily Business News, MHProNews.

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

Community Owners, Residents Clash over Measure V

September 29th, 2016 Comments off

yesnomeasurevhumboltcountymobilehome-manufacturedhomecommunity-manufacturedhousingindustrydailybusinessnewsmhpronewsA full-blown battle over rent control is on in Humboldt County, CA, reports the Lost Coast Outpost’s Ryan Burns.

The Humboldt Mobilehome Owner Coalition established a ballot measure, Measure V, that would regulate rent hikes on manufactured home land-lease sites. It aims to prevent a community’s owners from making what the measure’s advocates say are big and/or frequent site rent increases.

The way Measure V would work is manufactured home community owners would be permitted to raise rent once annually, and the increase would be tied to inflation through the Consumer Price Index.

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Image credit, Ballotpedia.

Under the measure, when a home is sold or transferred, the new residents site fees could only increase five percent higher than the previous residents paid.

If a community owner/operator could raise rents higher to pay for improvements, but must first get written approval from more than 50% of the homeowners/residents. Community owners can also appeal to the county if they feel they aren’t getting a fair return.

Measure V has caught the attention of property owners, who have spent $135,000 to date to fight it.

Opponents see this measure as an “unfair” and “unnecessary” rent control initiative that would hurt a manufactured home community and the availability of affordable housing, rather than help it.

Opponents cite the costs of the bureaucracy needed to administer the law, as well as potential court costs should Measure V pass.  That observation dovetails with a similar one made by UMH Properties CEO Sam Landy, JD, linked here.

Community owners also see a decrease in property tax revenues, as part of the fall out if Measure V becomes law.

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Greg Evans, photo credit, Lost Coast Post.

The biggest donors to the “No on Measure V” campaign are:

  • Greg Evans, president and general manager of Evans Management Services – $70,000,
  • FollettUSA president and CEO Matt Follett – $35,000,
  • Cisco Systems principal engineer Guntram Wolski – $20,000, and
  • Sea View Estates agent Steven Lester and Western Management owner John Bovone, who donated $5,000 each.

Meanwhile, the Humboldt Mobilehome Owner Coalition says, “As the moms and pops that built our mobile home parks age mattfollett_follettusa-credit-lostcoastpost-manufacturedhomeindustrydailybusinessnewsmhpronewsout, predatory, out-of-town corporate investors have been taking over,” Measure V proponents said in their ballot argument.

That group believes that Measure V will protect vulnerable residents, seniors in particular, from being exploited by corporate park owners. The coalition’s thinking is manufactured homeowners live on limited incomes and their equity is tied up in the home itself, which makes them, “captive renters.”

Once rent control is adopted, politicians will – by the tenants’ votes – be giving the landlord’s property to the tenants,” said UMH’s Landy. “It happens all the time.”

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Henry Hazlitt, an American journalist who wrote about business and economics, credit Wikipedia.

Daily Business News recently weighed both sides of another rent control argument, including a download from Henry Hazlitt arguing that rent control creates a long term harm, in a story found here.

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Sheila Dey.

Rent Control is the Wrong Prescription for California’s Housing Crisis, says Sheila Dey, Executive Director of the Western Manufactured Housing Communities Association. MHProNews will continue to track this developing story. ##

(Image credits are as shown above.)

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Joe Dyton, for the Daily Business News, MHProNews.

Submitted by Joe Dyton to the Daily Business News, MHProNews.

Resident Councilman leads charge for new law that Manufactured Home Community Owners, Industry Professionals say Harms All

August 29th, 2016 2 comments
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Dover councilman Fred Neil stands in his front yard in north Dover. (Delaware State News/Marc Clery)

It started last fall when we issued a permit to allow a manufactured home on a regular single-family lot,” said Ann Marie Townshend, director of Dover’s Planning and Community Development. “It got some people upset so we fixed the definition of single-family dwellings so that couldn’t happen again,” reported Mike Finney for the DelawareStateNews.

The “…story out of Dover, DE is yet another example of a blatant agenda and discrimination against our industry,” manufactured home veteran Brad Nelms told MHProNews. “More importantly, this is discrimination against affordable housing and the individuals who live in manufactured or pre-fabricated homes.”

Finney states the city of Dover reportedly recognized that their mobile and manufactured home ordinance was outdated in terminology and in other ways, so an updated 20-page revision of standards and verbiage known as Ordinance #2026-16 was enacted for Dover.

Townshend said the process began in Nov. 2015 and was passed unanimously by the members of city

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Ann Marie Townshend.

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Marty Lavin, JD.

council at their Aug. 8, 2016 meeting. Attorney and award-winning manufactured housing professional Marty Lavin pointed to Dover’s ordinance as an example of how “the HUD Code has become a deadly “discrimination code,” especially as it applies to manufactured home financing. But it doesn’t end there.”

As most MH industry professionals know, “the HUD Code” are the strict, federally preemptive standards that govern manufactured housing’s construction and safety standards; the trailer house era and mobile home days are decades in the rear-view mirror.

Dover Councilman Fred Neil, a resident of Wild Meadows, active adult manufactured home community near the Dover International Speedway, described the ordinance this way, “It’s a licensing law, and while it’s only $25 per home on a lot, the fact is if [the community owners] don’t do what they have to do, you can lift their license and put them out of business.”

Finney said Neil believes the now-required annual licensing of manufactured and mobile homes will improve things for residents.

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This street view of Wild Meadows reflects what many modern manufactured homes look like, with not a single mobile home visible in this picture; image credit, Google Maps.

New Regulation – helpful or harmful in the long run?

A Daily Business News brief in April, 2015 reported that the location’s operator, December Corporation, was denied a site fee increase under the rent justification law, which the company said was necessary to do more than ordinary improvements and maintenance at Wild Meadows.

The experience of rent control in California may provide clues to what’s coming in Dover.

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Doug Johnson, credit, Western Manufactured Home Communities.

Doug Johnson, of the Western Manufactured Housing Communities Association – which represents manufactured home communities and mobile home park owners in various issues and legal disputes – opposes rent control. “It’s very complicated and it pits the owners against the residents,” Johnson said. “We don’t believe rent control works — it raises mobile home prices and is expensive for the taxpayer.”

Government imposed regulations and fees are leading contributors to why California is the most expensive place to live in

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Sheila Dey, Executive Director, Western Manufactured Home Communities, photo credit, PublicCEO.

the U.S., placing homeownership out of reach for many middle-class Californians,” said Sheila Dey, Executive Director of the Western Manufactured Housing Communities Association (WMHCA), speaking about a similar scenario, linked here.

 

MHProNews previously reported a case out of Canada, where CBC TV provided a look at an actual example of rent control’s long term impact on manufactured home residents and owners alike.  That video is below.

Meanwhile, for some residents, it’s the fear of the impact of rapid-rent hikes that spark the concerns and calls for rent control.

Insider Report from Delaware

This Fred Neil has been a thorn in our side for 14 years now,” an informed source in Delaware told MHProNews. “He is now a City of Dover councilman and he has also been active on the state-wide tenant association for years.”

The source stated in confidence that there are a handful of communities in the City of Dover, which are in the early stages of planning a legal challenge to the city’s new

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Brad Nelms, MH Industry veteran, photo credit, MHProNews.

ordinance. The tension, it seems, won’t be resolved for either side of the struggle over the new ordinance.

I believe more than anything that these injustices should be motivation for us as an industry to do everything we can to elevate our brand identity,” Nelms, as part of a longer statement on this and a related issue linked here, stated. “If we continue to be complacent, history will continue to repeat itself and we will see more and more zoning laws that harm and hinder our much needed American manufactured home industry.” ##

(Image credits are as shown.)

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L. A. ‘Tony’ Kovach is the publisher of MHProNews.com and MHLivingNews.com.

(Editor’s Note: Matthew Silver is taking some much needed and well-earned time off, and L. A. “Tony” Kovach will be helping fill the Daily Business News role in the interim).

Article submitted by L. A. “Tony” Kovach, to the Daily Business News for MHProNews.

Rent Control in Manufactured Home Communities Inhibits New Development

April 5th, 2016 Comments off

Sheila_Dey__publicceo__credit__exec_Dir_of_western_mhcaAs Sheila Dey, Executive Director of the Western Manufactured Housing Communities Association (WMHCA), writes in publicceo, rent control is not the solution to the affordable housing crisis now gripping the state. Comparing a doctor trying to fix a broken leg by applying a band-aid, she said, “Government imposed regulations and fees are leading contributors to why California is the most expensive place to live in the U.S., placing homeownership out of reach for many middle-class Californians.”

Noting that rent control has never expanded nor preserved affordable housing, manufactured home communities (MHCs) have become a favorite target, “as if private property owners are responsible for the housing crisis.” Instead, since MH is 30 percent less costly than site-built homes, government should focus on incentivizing the building of more MHCs.

MHCs offer all the good attributes of traditional neighborhoods: social interaction and the security of close neighbors, open space and proximity to necessary goods and services. Not all MHC residents are poor and in need of financial assistance.

MHCs operate like small villages or cities: instead of collecting taxes, community owners collect rents to pay for upkeep on roads, landscaping, lighting, utility lines and other essential services. Some communities have clubhouses, fitness and exercise facilities and swimming pools, all requiring maintenance.

She said, “When the government imposes a rent control ordinance that reduces or freezes rents at below market rates, it threatens a community’s quality of life. Just like cities, when revenue does not exceed expenses, essential services are reduced or eliminated altogether, and as the maintenance of neighborhoods decline, so do property values as blight takes root.”

Community owners who are under rent control may have to personally subsidize residents if the rents are not sufficient to provide sustainability, in which case they may be forced to sell their property, which in turn may force residents to leave.

This can also undercut the financial incentive for owners to expand or build new MHCs, which further limits the availability of affordability housing. Said Dey, “This is why state and local government regulators should abandon the current course of driving up the cost of housing with costly, unneeded regulations, only to hastily impose price controls that don’t work once homeownership becomes unattainable. It is time for real and meaningful solutions. Making housing construction less expensive and more plentiful so that the savings can be passed on to all prospective homeowners is a good place to start.” ##

(Photo credit: publicceo-Sheila Dey)

matthew-silver-daily-business-news-mhpronews-comArticle submitted by Matthew J. Silver to Daily Business News-MHProNews.

Carson City Attorney’s Mission to Stop MH leads to Mission work for LDS

December 9th, 2014 Comments off

 

carson-connected=credit-posted-daily-business-news-mhpronews-com-City Attorney William Wynder from Carson City, California has stepped down after 35 years. Along with his wife, they plan to do mission work next. Wynder said: “It has been way harder to leave than I thought it was going to be, I have loved working in this city. I didn’t always agree with you and you didn’t always agree with me. And you let me know it. … This is an amazing community. You folks have very complicated, very interesting legal issues.”

Long Beach Press Telegram  tells MHProNews  the manufactured home community (MHC)/rent control issue became a huge fight for Carson in 2006. The owner of two of the town’s largest ‘mobile home parks’ – more properly known as land lease communities – tried to sidestep a city rent-control law. The alleged goal was a dramatic hike in rates to their home owners.

MHC residents fought back. They won support from City Council, who as Sheila Dey, Executive Director of the WMA.org, quipped tounge-in-cheek in reference to local elected officials I support property rights, but not in mobilehome parks.” Or, “I am opposed to rent control, but I support it in mobilehome parks.”

The council members allowed Wynder to spend tax dollars fighting MHC owner, James Goldstein, in about 20 lawsuits and damage claims rather than giving in to his demands.

Succeeding Wynder will be his longtime assistant Sunny Soltani. Soltani said: “Bill Wynder is the statewide expert in mobile home park conversion law he has successfully defended the city from major lawsuits by (Goldstein) seeking a total of over $112 million in damages against the city’s rent-control ordinance.”

What the Press Telegram writer and others favoring rent control fail to realize is the negative long term impact of rent control on affordable housing. For a Canadian perspective (which video uses poor terminology too) on the true impact of rent control see video above.##

Rent control related post, linked here.

(Photo Credit: Carson-Connected)

joseine-josie-thompson-writer-daily-business-news-mhpronews-com50x50-Article submitted by Josie Thompson to – Daily Business News – MHProNews.