Posts Tagged ‘True Manufactured Home Confession’

Painful or Pleasurable Discoveries, True Manufactured Home Confession

October 26th, 2018 Comments off



Think back to the moment in time when you first discovered modern manufactured homes.


Was it an “Aha!” moment?


This writer has told the story to live audiences from border-to-border of how I stumbled upon manufactured homes. It was an eye opening, exciting moment for me professionally. I didn’t even realize that I was looking for a new career until I saw those new homes on South Shields Blvd. in Oklahoma City’s ‘mobile home row.’

They weren’t mobile homes when I saw them, they were HUD Code manufactured homes. But sadly in the early 1980s, as now in 2018, many used the incorrect terminology. But the point is I was immediately fascinated by what I saw, and I got into this amazing industry as quickly as I could.

Fast forward. Over the years, MHLivingNews and MHProNews has spotlighted certain figures who embraced pre-HUD Code mobile home living, post-HUD Code manufactured homes, and/or some other kind of modular/prefab housing.

Among them this year was U.S. Senator Thom Tillis (NC-R).

In a Senate oversight hearing with HUD Secretary Ben Carson, Senator Tillis told part of his own family’s story about growing up in what he described as a mobile home.

It was a potentially useful story for the manufactured housing industry. We created a video of that, shown below, which has been posted previously on and too.  ICYMI or need a refresher for yourself or others, they are posted below.



“Move, Open, Live” De Rose Industries & Senator Thom Tillis’ Mobile Home Comments


So why hasn’t the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI), which claims to represent all of Factory-Built Housing, have no mention of Senator Tillis at all on their website?  This graphic below is a composite from their website, earlier this morning.




I joined MHI at the urging of Ken Rishel and George Allen, about 8 years ago. Last I asked George, he is no longer a member of MHI. But Allen makes it no secret that he gladly takes whatever MHI dollars are passed in his direction.


Left to right, L. A. ‘Tony’ Kovach, Don Westphal, Ken Rishel, and George Allen. Louisville 2011. For a relatively short period of time, Rishel, Allen and Kovach were doing a level of collaboration in publishing.  At the time of this photo, all four were MHI members.

I joined MHI with the notion of making a positive difference. Of being with others that presubmably wanted to see the industry grow to its true potential. Years later, with attendance at numerous MHI meetings every year, what was witnessed was the same old, same old, meeting-after-meeting, time-after-time.


The research published by Realtor University reflects that not only has manufactured home shipments at historic lows, but the percentage of sales compared to all other housing sales are at historic lows too. While the industry can be happy about ‘growth,’ it is growth from just under 50,000 shipments.  When the National Association of Realtors (NAR) Chief Economist Lawrence Yun says that there is a need for 8.3 million housing units, and manufactured housing may only achieve some 100,000 (+/-) shipments, one must ask, how is that possible?  There is an ancient expression, “cui bono,” Latin for “who benefits?” It is used in searching for possible suspects in a crime.  Who benefited from low new manufactured home shipments?  Certainly not the vast majority of the independents of the manufactured home industry.


Yes, the networking at MHI was enjoyable.

  • But where was the progress that was being made on the industry’s key issues?
  • Where was the progress being made on zoning, on placement, on public education, or improved financing options?

Among the painful things that happen in life is the discovery of some kind of betrayal. Most adults over the age of 30 will likely have encountered friends, family, co-workers, members of their church or place of worship that have endured the discovery of a cheating spouse, a partner who stole from them, a dishonest employee, etc.

It is painful, isn’t it?

But is it better to know of the betrayal? Or is it better to go on in ignorance, while someone continues to steal or otherwise break faith?

There are stages of grieving, we are told by experts. Among them is denial.



We know members in each of these 5 stages, how about you?


A common thread for many a cheating spouse, the theft of workers, or from dishonest partners is that they the dishonest one is posturing the opposite of what they in fact are.

MHI has also had Congressman Andy Barr as an apt spokesperson. Rep. Barr has also been on CSPN type videos, telling the Manufactured Housing story well. I’ve met Barr personally. He seems like a true gentleman. He has personal stories – favorable – about manufactured home living.

A search of the MHI website reveals links to stories about Rep. Barr’s support of the MHI sponsored bill, the Preserving Access to Manufactured Housing Act.

But Congressman Barr is among those targeted by the political left for elimination.


Was Manufactured Housing Advocate Congressman Andy Barr Backstabbed?


Marsha Blackburn, who is fighting to take the Senate seat being vacated by Bob Corker (TN-R), is also a target of the left and their allies. These are just two of those who have been loyal to MHI.  But Clayton has thrown in with Rep. Blackburn’s opponent.  Why?


“He’s Lying,” Campaign Insider Video – “Don’t Do Politics?” Tell Jim Clayton, Phil Bredesen, and Marsha Blackburn, Preserving Access to Manufactured Housing Act Supporter


Clayton, and other deep pocket Democratic donors, are tossing their money and support behind the opponent of a loyal MHI supporter.  ICYMI, or need to share the evidence with a colleague, those are linked for your easy reference of the data, evidence, and facts.

If the powers that be behind MHI do such things to others, why would any MHI member think they won’t do it to you?

If you’ve been in the industry for over a decade, and you attended several state association meetings in those days, the odds are good that you know several people who were knocked out of business in ways that critics say violate antitrust laws.  But don’t take anyone else’s word for or allegations for that claim.  See the evidence for yourself – found in the words of 21st Mortgage’s CEO – Tim Williams – or the words of Warren Buffett, or the words of  Kevin Clayton. Go to the source evidence.  That’s what an objective journalist or honest researcher is supposed to do too.


Smoking Gun 3 – Warren Buffett, Kevin Clayton, Clayton Homes, 21st Mortgage Corp Tim Williams – Manufactured Home Lending, Sales Grab?


There is a school of thought that no problem should be presented without a solution. Let me present two thoughts, steps toward solutions, which are interrelated.

Tonight, there will be Trump MAGA Rally at 7 PM ET, in Charlotte, NC.  Unless you are highly connected, it is likely already too late to get in the doors.  But typically one of the CSPAN channels (CSPAN2), or a YouTube Channel search for “Trump Rally Charlotte,” will turn up a live feed.  If you hate, love or are uncertain about the president and his agenda, why not be open-minded enough to give 75 to 90 minutes to seeing one for yourself?

At the end of each POTUS Trump rally, once the president has finished speaking, a song starts to play.  “You can’t always get what you want.” Part of the lyrics of that song are, “but if you try sometimes, you might find you get what you need.

President Trump is more pragmatic, and a lot funnier, than many give him credit for being. The 45th president knows not everyone voted for him, or supported him.  You don’t always get what you wanted.

But sometimes, you find that you get what you need.  Pragmatic, pro-business, pro-worker, “America First” policies are what our nation has needed for years.  Don’t close your mind, just watch for the roughly 75 to 90 minutes (+/-) that the president and whoever he his highlighting will speak.

Watch the crowds.  On Right Side Broadcasting, a YouTube Channel, they often pan the crowds at a Trump Rally.  There are similar themes, but no two Trump rallies are the same.

Then, comes the next step.



In less than 2 weeks, the midterms will be decided.

I took my 12-year-old son to the polls yesterday for early voting. The line was stunning, but we waded in. An aspect of that will be told on the Masthead, perhaps this weekend. But sufficient for now is this. That man my son is photographed with below is a Vietnam Veteran. The man with the MAGA hat on in the background to the right, who indicated their preferences without being asked. These were just some of those who by listening or from observation in line to vote revealed themselves to be supporters of those who support President Trump.  There were no doubt Democratic voters in that line, but there were people of various ethnic groups that were talking about issues like immigration. We made no speeches, we listened and observed. It was interesting to see a Latino family, for instance, saying that they supported a border wall. Other self-described legal immigrants made similar statements.



I didn’t even realize it until after the photo, but the Vietnam Veteran put his hat on my son Tamas’ head for the picture. We make it a habit to thank every veteran we can, and to thank every uniformed law enforcement officer too. Our son is learning that habit, with joy, as you can see.


The Manufactured Housing Connection

Our industry is a solution for millions of Americans.  In our area, over 20 percent of the population live in a pre-HUD Code mobile home, or a post-HUD Code manufactured home.  Look at that line in the photo above and think, one in five that you see were statistically living in our industry’s product.

It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to see that we have a great industry who’s story is being inadequately told by the national association that claims to be promoting them.  If the story was being well told, our sales would be no less than 5 to 10 times greater than it is.

That’s realistic, and pragmatic.

It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to realize what painfully dawned on me as an MHI member. Call me slow, too trusting, 0r both. Thankfully, there are voices at and in MHI who ‘educated’ me as to the true nature of that Arlington, VA based organization. I hereby thank them all again for their patiently sharing their own – sometimes painful – realities with me.

Some of them told me their own stories of betrayal. I listened. That’s how someone like myself goes from being a supporter to a fact-checker and skeptic.

The second short-term next step is to vote against all of those who play the ‘progressive’ political card that Tim Williams, President and CEO of 21st Mortgage and prior MHI Chairman, rightfully condemned.



Notice. One can agree with 21st Mortgage CEO and prior MHI Chairman Tim Williams’ presentation, from which the slide above was taken with permission, while still questioning how it came to be that Williams was being intellectually at odds with Berkshire Hathaway Chairman, Warren Buffett. To see all of William’s informative slides, click the graphic above.


That is done by voting for those who support a president who is standing by Representatives Andy Barr, Marsha Blackburn and others. As political independents, we are standing by those who pledge support of a president who visited a manufactured home community, and praised those great people there.

We support an administration who removed Pam Danner, thanks to the repeated nudging of MHARR.


Greener, Stylish Manufactured Homes – Hidden Facts in the Washington Post Manufactured Housing Narrative


Of an administration that had HUD Secretary Carson pledge a new era of cooperation with manufactured housing.

Where are all those great stories – like those we’ve shared, with a fraction of MHI’s budget – on the MHI website?

  • The realization of betrayal is a painful, but eventually useful, thing.
  • The next step? Watch that rally.
  • Then, vote wisely and pragmatically. You can’t always get what you want.  But if you try sometime, you get what you need.

The steps after those two will revealed after November 7.  See the Related Reports, further below for more.  “We Provide, You Decide.” © ## (News, analysis, and commentary.)

(See Related Reports, further below. Third-party images and content are provided under fair use guidelines.)


The comment above was said with respect to another recent topic, but relates to this issue too.

By L.A. “Tony” Kovach – for

Tony is the multiple award-winning managing member of LifeStyle Factory Homes, LLC, the parent company to MHProNews, and

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Related Reports:

President Donald J. Trump Visit to Manufactured Home Community, Video, Hurricane Florence Update

MHI SVP Lesli Gooch & MHARR CEO Mark Weiss Bookend New, Prior HUD Controversies