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Posts Tagged ‘manufactured home’

Why Go to the Louisville MH Show?

December 8th, 2010 1 comment

As a 39 year industry veteran, I have always been a sucker for industry shows. I hear arguments that with the industry shipments down that we should cancel the shows and focus on survival. While I have significant experience focusing on survival, I believe industry shows are a way to send the message out that we will not be beaten down.

My career in the industry began in Georgia in 1971 where I remained until moving to Texas in 1983, followed by a move to Oklahoma in 1988. For many of those years in Georgia, a high point of the year was making the journey to Louisville, in horrible January weather, to go to the Louisville Show. Why was that trip important to me despite the cold weather and taking time away from my own business? The opportunity to see new innovations as they were being introduced, instead of months later; the chance to visit with industry friends that have come in from vast distances across the country; the potential of finding a new product line before my competitor saw it, and the benefit of being able to learn and grow at the industry seminars that were always a part of the event.

My last trip to Louisville was in January 2008, which happened to be the 50th anniversary for the show. I can again say that I enjoyed the trip and even picked up a new product line while I was there. I can’t say that for absolutely sure I will make it to the 2011 Louisville show. I can confirm that I will do my best to do so.

I have had the pleasure of serving as chairman of The Great Southwest Home Show for the third year running. Like Louisville, The Great Southwest Home Show is held in an indoor facility (The Quick Trip Center). No rain problems during set-up, show days or tear-down. No generator rentals or air conditioning expenses for the manufacturer exhibitors. The Tulsa show is located at almost the geographic center of the United States and is serviced by several major airlines including Southwest. The 10.5 acre Quick Trip Center is also configured in such a manner to provide adequate security to allow for several days of Public Days following the retail period of the show. Supplier exhibit booths are conveniently located in and amongst the area where the homes are displayed.

Retailers, especially in the states contiguous to Oklahoma should not miss the opportunity to travel a very short distance to experience the thrill of seeing a huge display of exciting homes all located under one roof at one time. The educational seminars are a bonus. A bonus we got as an industry last year was that HUD brought its staff to Tulsa and held the meeting of the Manufactured Housing Consensus Committee (MHCC) in Tulsa in conjunction with The Great Southwest Home Show and Oklahoma’s state convention for the Manufactured Housing Association of Oklahoma (MHAO). The show and convention were enthusiastically received by both HUD staff and by MHCC members and the newly appointed Associate Deputy Assistant Secretary of HUD, Teresa Payne was the keynote speaker at the MHAO convention. The opening remarks by Teresa Payne at the next MHCC meeting held in Washington DC were to express thanks for having had the opportunity to hold the meetings in conjunction with the industry events in Oklahoma.

I believe we should support all of the industry shows that we can possibly attend. In addition to attending The Great Southwest Home Show last year, I took the time and the travel requirements to attend the Tunica Show and I enjoyed every minute of it. I will do my best to do so again in 2011, just as I said I would for Louisville. As industry members, I believe we should support and attend all the shows that are within reasonable travel access.

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Doug Gorman, President, Home-Mart, Inc.
Manufactured Housing Consensus Committee Member (MHCC)
Manufactured Housing Education Institute (MHEI) board member and past chairman
Manufactured Housing Association of Oklahoma (MHAO) board member and past president
Award-winning retailer in Tulsa, OK

Going to the 2011 Louisville Manufactured Housing Show

December 5th, 2010 1 comment

It’s great news that the Louisville Show is returning in 2011. It demonstrates that producers of factory built homes and services are positive about the future of our industry. It would be so easy not to be positive. We seem to find new impediments affecting our business every day. However, leaders are able to see further down the road. The bad laws will either be amended somewhat, or the industry will adapt. For those of you around in 1974, that was supposed to be the end of the industry because the federal government was taking over the supervision of the industry’s building code. We’ve had many such declarations of doom since the beginning of our industry. Some people just don’t believe it and figure out a way to proceed. When the Louisville Show didn’t go forward earlier this year, most people didn’t figure it would ever return. They were wrong. Thanks to forward thinking, it is back!

Let’s think about how remarkable this quick comeback really is. Many producers have found it easier and less costly just to have a show for their own retailers at company-owned factories. In that fashion, you don’t have your retailers looking over other homes at a larger setting like the Louisville MH Show. Business is difficult now. If you have a strong retailer, it might be easier to use this method, hoping the retailer won’t go to anyone else’s show.

But, on the other hand, if you’re part of a large show, then you might attract other retailers. As a company, you need to have confidence in your product. What better way to find out if your new model works than to show it off to as many retailers as possible.

In addition to the industry confidence displayed by this decision of bringing the show back, there are other benefits in having the show. For retailers and community owners, having a show of this magnitude is an excellent opportunity to visit with a large number of industry personnel and experts. Studies have shown that much of our learning experience comes from incidental learning. Going to a show, like the Louisville MH Show, gives one plenty of exposure to having informal conversations with other attendees and with experts on a wide array of topics. Formal learning is also important. The 2011 Louisville Manufactured Housing Show will have seminars on topics important to all segments of the industry.

Finally, there is just something special in being part of a large scene like the Louisville Show. When you get that many people together, there is an energy created that can’t be replicated at your office or factory. That’s why most executive directors enjoy our annual meetings. Sure, we find plenty of things to worry about: will that speaker I hired really do a good job… will the food be o.k., etc.?

What we enjoy is seeing our members come together, get excited about things, and create an energy that can propel some advancements.

That’s what the Louisville Show is all about. Even though Iowa is not a cosponsoring state, many Iowa retailers buy homes from producers who will be showing homes, products and services in Louisville. I know that Iowa retailers, as well as retailers and community owners and all industry personnel from throughout the trade area of the show, will be looking forward to attending the show in January.

Congratulations are in order for those who have brought this great show back into existence! Now it’s our turn to demonstrate the same confidence in the industry by attending and engaging ourselves in the 2011 Louisville Show, January 12-14th.

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Joe Kelly
Executive Vice President of the Iowa Manufactured Housing Association (IMHA), a 63-year-old trade association located in Des Moines, Iowa.

The Louisville Show is a Must Attend Event

December 1st, 2010 No comments

Louisville Manufactured Housing Show - January 12-14, 2011The Louisville Show is rich in history and tradition, and for many of us, memories of times gone by. For some, that would be reason enough to attend, because they see the Show as important and worthy of support as an industry statement of who and what we are. This show has chronicled our history and progress from 8′ wide “wobble boxes” to 32′-wide HUD Codes that are structurally superior to most site built housing.

Others need much more to take the time and money to make the trek to Louisville. For them, the Show offers a chance to network with others in the industry and learn things they don’t know that could affect their choices and decisions in their businesses. In the past, much of this has been informal, but now Dennis Hill has stepped it up, and garnered experts to put on seminars and workshops on a variety of subjects vital to those planning on staying in the industry, at no charge to the attendees of the Show. These seminars are reason enough for community owners and retailers to attend.

The seminars are just the beginning, however. The Show is, as it should be, the biggest and best place to gather information about the new homes and products that are available. It is amazing how many retailers and community owners think they know what’s out there, that actually don’t know about products and homes they should be considering. This is the place to discuss why levers on doors, wider doorways and halls, and taller toilets can significantly increase sales when marketed properly. This is the place to learn about selling brand new homes into a community for $32,000.00 and still have a real profit of $5,000 or more.

It is the place to learn about the latest trends in financing from Title I, to low interest loans to A credit borrowers, to the burgeoning new opportunity that owner assisted captive finance presents. It is a place to learn about new trends in set-up and installation, from skirting to lower perimeter enclosures as well as marketing techniques to generate more foot traffic.

The Show also offers the opportunity to catch up with old friends and meet new ones. It also creates a venue to relax after hours with others who appreciate Roger Miller’s “King of the Road” at places like Howl at the Moon, or for industry rich conversation over dinner at the Brown Hotel. What more in the way of reasons does one need to be there?

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Ken Rishel of Rishel Consulting Group and Precision Capital Funding is the industry-acknowledged expert on owner assisted chattel financing. In addition, he was a highly successful community retailer and community owner, as well as working with an outside lender during their growth to a national force in manufactured housing. He has been on the Board of Directors of two state associations, was appointed by the Governor to serve as the first chairman of the State of Illinois Manufactured Housing Quality Assurance Board, and is a nationally recognized and sought speaker within the manufactured housing industry. He serves on the MHI Task Force on Dodd-Frank, and his company was the MHI winner of the 2010 Service Supplier of the Year Award. He is also the author of the Chattel Finance Newsletter, which has over 9,000 subscribers.

Information on the Louisville Manufactured Housing Show is available here.

A Book Review – The Manufactured Housing Revolution

November 21st, 2010 No comments

“Revolution” (The Manufactured Housing), Edited by L.A. ‘Tony’ Kovach July 2010 published by MSMHM.com.

When one thinks about the pejorative “living in a trailer,” the term “revolution” doesn’t normally come to mind, but when you read Tony’s latest publication, it’s easy to understand how the nascent transition to manufactured housing is upon us. He has created a compendium of noted experts who are on the “cutting edge” of manufactured housing, concluding we are truly on the “edge of a revolution” in housing.

How so, you say?

Well, this collection of recent articles and columns from widely divergent aspects of this uniquely American industry supports the concept that manufactured housing is poised to take advantage of the many families who have, in effect, been disenfranchised from safe, affordable, functional housing through the loss of their primary residence.

Intended for industry veterans and newcomers alike, it provides some helpful viewpoints on such diverse subjects as: selling manufactured homes in a tough marketplace, getting yourself up for the sales confrontation, understanding the corporate disconnect and handling issues such as the myths about tornado damage.

Thought provoking articles include: “The Power of Now” by John Underwood, “Upgrading Your Image” by Don Westphal, “Changing Perceptions” by the Editor, “Fight, Flight, or Freeze” by Amy Bliss, and from the ever popular motivational guru Zig Ziglar on “Pos-Zig-ative Thinking.”

Tony adds: “Sound implementation of proven strategies don’t cost, they pay.” And, “If you aren’t getting the results you want, then change what you are doing … but don’t change for change’s sake.”

Test the possibilities! Tony’s collection of works by successful manufactured housing industry experts can show you the way.

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Edward “Ask Eddie” Hicks
>Lic. RE Broker, Lic. Mortgage Broker, Columnist for the Journal of Manufactured Housing
(813) 661-5901
Easteddie@aol.com/
www.mobilehomepark.com/


This book is available at the The Manufactured Housing Revolution website. Now through December 31, get $5 off during the holiday special.

Let’s Finish the Dream!

November 18th, 2010 No comments

Along America’s Main Street – I 80 in Elkhart, IN – a Las Vegas style sign invites all to visit the RV/MH Hall of Fame! A bright sign shines on a nearly complete Hall of Fame honoring the history and history makers in the RV and manufactured housing industries. Now it is time to finish the dream.

The Hall of Fame has applied for a $6 million USDA loan to construct the MH Hall which is the final component of the complex. The RV industry has done its part building its beautiful display hall despite the economic downturn. Now it’s our turn.

The loan will retire the Hall’s $3 million debt (on an $11 million complex) and build a 15,000 foot MH Founder’s Hall. There will be 20 acres of blacktop, lighting and improvements for outdoor rental venues as well.

To make this all happen, the Hall has to show that its financial house is in order. This winter the Hall will experience a serious cash flow shortage. The Hall has assets that vastly exceed its liabilities, but cash flow is another matter at the moment. During this Holiday Season, please send a charitable contribution to the RV/MH Hall of Fame at 21565 Executive Parkway, Elkhart Indiana 46514. www.rvmhhalloffame.org

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Ross Kinzler, Exec. Director of the Wisconsin Housing Alliance (WHA)

Further Evidence of Industry Complicity with Regulators to Downgrade the MHCC

November 12th, 2010 No comments

Item sent to MHARR Email List on November 12, 2010

MHARR logoShown below, for your review and information, is an article authored by an independent industry trade journalist, published in the Manufactured Home Marketing Sales Management (MHMSM) blog on November 11, 2010. The article is based on developments at the recently-concluded October 26-27, 2010 Manufactured Housing Consensus Committee (MHCC) meeting in Washington, D.C.

We encourage you to carefully read this article to its conclusion, as it clearly reveals the support and free hand that HUD regulators regularly receive from part of the industry to ignore or evade existing laws – in this case improperly downgrading the MHCC.

As MHARR has been warning the industry for years, regulators’ continuing evasion of the good laws passed by Congress, on all matters, is similarly enabled and facilitated by industry apologists, under the guise of “working with” those regulators, which – whether it be in the consumer finance or production arena – has resulted in nothing but 12 years of industry decline with no corresponding accountability.

Indeed, in this case, while two senior members of the MHCC (community and retailer) attempt to explain the failures of HUD regulators in dealing with the MHCC, the spokesperson for their national representation seeks to justify the actions of those regulators.

Nevertheless, with the current mood of the country, a power shift and major changes impending in Washington, D.C., the industry once again has a window of opportunity to correct the abuses of the past 12 years through strong and focused policies and actions that provide positive results, rather than more of the same go-along-to-get-along agenda that produces nothing but more excuses.

Click here for Industry in Focus Report

MHI Outlines Priorities for 2011 Industry Unity Critical For Success

November 9th, 2010 No comments

by Thayer Long

MHI 75th Anniversary logoEarlier this year, MHI outlined three broad areas where resources must be focused to protect and promote the industry. These three areas also encapsulate over two dozen separate legislative and regulatory initiatives MHI works on a regular basis. The three areas were 1) improved climate for financing, 2) updating the HUD-Code, and 3) protecting preemption.

At the time of this writing, the 2010 mid-term elections [were] just a few weeks away. And while the political landscape [was then] uncertain, the issues we are facing are not. In late September at the MHI Annual Meeting, MHI members and Board of Directors outlined priorities for the industry and the association in preparation for 2011 and the incoming 112th Congress. The priorities represent the collective input of manufacturers, lenders, community owners, manufactured housing state associations, retailers and suppliers—the entire MHI membership. A strong unified voice from all industry segments gives us a much greater likelihood for success. MHI is prepared to put forth every effort it can muster on these priority issues.

Of utmost importance will be implementation of the financial reform bill. The Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act (H.R. 4173; P.L. 111-517) was enacted into law on July 21, 2010. The law is considered the most significant rewrite in decades of rules governing banking and financial services and will impact every financial institution and credit instrument in the nation.

One of the most visible and significant creations of the law is the establishment of a new independent and autonomous Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB), housed within the Federal Reserve, that will regulate all consumer financial products and participants, including mortgages, credit cards, banks, payday loans and other financial products.

Initial estimates conservatively indicate the act will require more than 240 new rulemakings, nearly 70 new one-time reports/studies, and more than 22 new on-going studies. This does not include the administration of existing regulations and laws that will be transferred to the new CFPB—there are nearly 20 existing consumer/housing finance-related laws that will now fall under the new bureau’s jurisdiction—or existing rulemakings that were in progress at the time of the bureau’s inception.

Since this legislation addresses all financial products, it stands to reason that provisions in this bill contain significant issues for manufactured home lending. Addressing these issues, and correcting them, must be the primary focus in 2011.

There still is work to be done at both the national and state level regarding SAFE Act implementation. The Dodd-Frank Bill transfers jurisdiction and oversight of a number of mortgage-related laws from the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) to the CFPB. Included in the regulatory transfer is the shift of enforcement over the SAFE Act from HUD to the CFPB. HUD maintains jurisdiction over the SAFE Act until the designated transfer date of July 21, 2011. It is unclear if HUD will issue a final rule on the SAFE Act. However, regulatory oversight of the statute will eventually shift to the CFPB.

The SAFE Act, and uncertainty around its application to many industries, including manufactured housing, remains a key issue to be resolved in 2011. Achieving clarity in application and making the SAFE Act more relevant to the manufactured housing industry will be a high priority in 2011.

In the past three months MHI has been invited to White House sponsored events on the future of government in housing. All expectations are that the GSE reform will begin to move seriously in 2011. The U.S. Treasury Department is required to submit a report to Congress, no later than January 31, 2011, on ending the conservatorship of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac and reforming the housing finance system. For more than a decade, GSE and federal support of manufactured home lending and finance has been limited, even with strong Congressional guidance in the Housing and Economic Recovery Act of 2008 (HERA).

Since manufactured housing is “housing” plain and simple, MHI will need to be actively engaged with committee members, administration officials and external stakeholder groups at the national and grassroots level to ensure manufactured housing is on a level playing field in any new housing finance system.

Tax extensions and tax reform have made the news headlines lately. Section 45L of the tax code provides a credit of $1,000 to manufacturers of Energy Star HUD Code manufactured homes and $2,000 for modular homes. The credit was originally enacted as part of the Energy Policy Act of 2005 and for the past several years has been extended on an annual/temporary basis. The credit officially expired December 31, 2009.

Regardless of whether tax extenders legislation is enacted during the 111th Congress “lame duck” session which is getting underway, the need to pass an extension will again arise early in 2011. The ability to rely on the long-term availability of the new energy efficient home tax credit is of critical importance. In addition, with energy efficiency standards potentially becoming more stringent the cost to build such homes will also increase.

In 2011, MHI will work to pursue a strategy that: 1) increases the amount of the tax credit; 2) provides for a long-term/permanent enactment of the tax credit; and 3) potentially monetizes the tax credit. MHI will also examine other options to provide maximum benefit to the industry.

A severe threat to affordability and the HUD-Code is underway because of the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007 (EISA; P.L. 110-140) which contains provisions requiring the Department of Energy (DOE) to establish and implement energy efficiency standards for manufactured housing (Sec. 413).

The bill specifically tasks DOE, not the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) to come up with new energy standards for manufactured homes.  MHI has developed a legislative proposal that would place responsibility for implementing energy efficiency standards developed by DOE within HUD and ensure that new standards strike a balance between energy efficiency and maximizing housing affordability for very low- and low-income families. The 112th Congress may yield opportunities to make targeted revisions to EISA.

If 2010 has been a pivotal year for MHI and the industry, 2011 will be a critical year for the industry. The market appears to have stabilized, however significant economic headwinds, a fragile housing market, and an active legislative and regulatory environment still threaten the industry.

We are all in this together. In particular, state association members, homeowners and residents represent the lifeblood of the industry, and MHI will be giving special attention to its grassroots mobilization efforts in 2011. MHI will be gearing up on effectively engaging these constituency groups and stressing the importance of direct member and industry involvement in the government relations process.

MHI is here to serve. We always welcome suggestions and feedback. If you are not involved, I encourage you to become active at the national level. The industry needs your voice.

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Thayer Long is Executive Vice President of MHI, the preeminent national trade association for manufactured and modular housing industries, representing all segments of the industries before Congress and the Federal government. He can be contacted directly at (703) 558-0678. For more information on MHI, visit www.manufacturedhousing.org.

Highlights of 2010 Mid-Term Election

November 3rd, 2010 1 comment

MHI logoA Republican wave on November 2, 2010 surged across much of the nation with a decisive victory. As is evident from last night’s election, this country is changing and that will have a long-term effect on our politics, political parties and policies. Republicans regained control of the House of Representatives by a margin of 239-187. The U.S. Senate split 51 (D) – 46 (R ); 3 seats undecided, and several House and Senate races are still too close to call and a number of races may require election recounts.

MHI-PAC had a successful election cycle with 84% of the pro-business candidates endorsed won their elections. Click here for the Post-Election Update of MHI-PAC’s Win/Loss Record. Thanks to hundreds of our members nationwide, MHI had the ability to support government leaders who will work to further the goals of our industry.

On a positive note, several key manufactured housing proponents retained their seats:

  • Congressman Joe Donnelly (D-IN-02), a member of the House Financial Services Committee. Through his leadership, HR 5369 the “Manufactured Housing Licensing Clarification Act of 2010” was introduced in Congress. The purpose of the legislation is to clarify and exempt certain activities conducted by manufactured home salespersons and retailers from the requirements of mortgage loan originator licensing.
  • Congressman Barney Frank (D-MA-03), Chairman of the House Financial Services Committee. On MHI’s behalf, Chairman Frank sent a letter to HUD Secretary Shaun Donovan seeking clarification of the SAFE Act and to convey the importance of the manufactured housing industry.
  • Congressman Ken Calvert (R-CA-44), 9th term member of Congress and Republican chairman of the House Manufactured Housing Caucus. Congressman Calvert will be instrumental in helping the industry navigate though the implementation process of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act.

We note with sadness that several key manufactured housing champions lost their re-election bids:

  • Senator Blanche Lincoln (D-AR), a member of the Senate Finance Committee and a leading advocate in supporting legislation to require the Administrator of FEMA to implement a plan which addresses the abundance of surplus manufactured housing units stored by the Federal Government.
  • Congressman Baron Hill (D-IN-09), a member of the Energy and Commerce Committee. Congressman Hill introduced the Energy Efficient Manufactured Housing Act (H.R. 1749). The Legislation authorize the Department of Energy (DOE) to make grants to states to provide owners of manufactured homes constructed prior to 1976 with a one-time only rebate of up to $7,500 to use towards the purchase of a new Energy Star qualified manufactured home.
  • Congressman Bob Etheridge (D-NC-02), a 7th term member of Congress and Democratic chairman of the House Manufactured Housing Caucus. Congressman Etheridge supported tax extension legislation (H.R. 4213) which was approved by the House of Representative. The bill extends, section 45L, the tax credit providing $1,000 to manufacturers of Energy Star HUD Code homes and $2,000 for modular homes.

In addition, MHI looks forward to working with all new members of Congress, Republican or Democrat, who as a matter of strategic principle, MHI has sought to build relationships on both sides of the aisle in order to be well positioned whatever the electoral outcome. We could not have scripted the outcome of this year’s elections, but the wisdom of a bipartisan approach has been vindicated.

In January 2011, the 112th Congress will bring many newcomers to Capitol Hill. If a new Member of Congress represents your state or district, please make it a priority to call, write or visit these new representatives as soon as possible. Every election is a beginning, not an end; every new Member of Congress is an opportunity to win new friends for MHI.

In the coming weeks, House GOP leaders are expected to conduct leadership elections and formalize the chamber’s leadership for the 112th Congress. Following this, House and Senate leaders will begin the task of formalizing committee rosters and hiring committee staff. The new House GOP leadership will have an opportunity to begin putting its new majority to use relatively quickly. The President is slated to provide the State of the Union Address in mid-January followed by the release of the 2012 budget outline in early-February. Both are expected to garner strong resistance from the new House Republican majority and provide an opportunity to highlight key policy divisions between Republicans and Democrats.

MHI is beginning the process of reaching out to new House and Senate members in an effort to build a cohesive coalition in support of the industry’s priorities. The 112th Congress is expected to be heavily partisan and provide little opportunity for substantial policy reform. It is critical the industry begin the process of communicating policy concerns to new and existing Members of Congress now.

If you have any questions contact the MHI Government and Legislative affairs team at RBevington@mfghome.org or 703-558-0675, or jboehlert@mfghome.org 703-558-0660.

RE: The Mid-Term Elections

November 3rd, 2010 2 comments

Here is the message that I sent to my members and to the members of the other association that I represent, just FYI.

One of the most precious gifts afforded people in the United States is the right to vote for our leaders. Unlike countries where radical and revolutionary elements make the determination of the leadership of their countries, we have a democratic representation that can change without the furor that others experience.

However, that gift is not as much a gift as a ‘right’ earned by the struggle of many patriots throughout our history. I am certain that we have quite a few of those in our own families. Those who are fighting for freedom of choice and those who have given their own lives in the defense of this right and privilege deserve at least the effort on our parts to exercise that right.

Tomorrow, November 2nd, we have that opportunity to exercise that right and I hope that you take the time to do just that. So many people give the usual reasons for not voting such as “my vote won’t count as it is already decided”, or “I don’t know who to vote for as I don’t like any of them”, and on and on and on…you all have heard it before.

For those who do not vote, you are tacitly agreeing that the current situation that we have is OK and that you do not wish to voice an opinion, therefore; you have voted by not going to the pools on Tuesday.

It is imperative that people in our great country utilize this right and privilege that so many have sacrificed for. Many recent presidents and scholars have stated that we are unique in that our system of government has survived for so many years, and it is true. Our founding fathers were more intuitive than most to have crafted a constitution that has stood the test of time. But this will only continue with the citizens of this land exercising that right bestowed on us.

Tomorrow, November 2nd, please take the few minutes that it will take to exercise your right and privilege and vote. Be the leaders of our industry and cast your vote as your heart and mind dictate – just vote!

Thanks 

R W Thieman, Jr., CAE
Executive Director
Illinois Manufactured Housing Association
3888 Peoria Rd
Springfield, IL 62702
217-528-3423
Fax: 217-544-4642
bthieman@imha.org
info@imha.org
www.imha.org

Urge Senators to Co-sponsor the Advanced Energy Tax Incentives Act of 2010

November 2nd, 2010 No comments

(S. 3935) Measure Expands and Extends Tax Credits for Energy Star Factory-Build Homes

MHI logoCongress is currently scheduled to return for a lame duck session the week of November 15 to complete work on a number of must-pass legislative measures, including a potential energy tax incentive package.

MHI is seeking assistance to ensure legislation extending and expanding tax credits available for the production of Energy Star-qualified manufactured and modular homes is included in any tax package considered by Congress

Download Word doc of Sample Letter to Committee Members. (PDF version)

BACKGROUND:

At the end of September, Sens. Jeff Bingaman (D-NM) and Olympia Snowe (R-ME) introduced the Advanced Energy Tax Incentives Act of 2010 (S. 3935). The measure would extend a variety of tax incentives, including Section 45L for manufactured and modular homes.

The legislation would amend the tax code to provide a credit of $1,500 for qualifying Energy Star manufactured homes, an increase from the current $1,000 credit. The credit increases to $2,500 when new, more stringent manufactured housing Energy Star requirements go into effect in 2011.

For the highly price sensitive manufactured home market, tax credits are vital in helping offset the added costs associated with the construction, purchase and ownership of an Energy Star home.

The existing $1,000 tax credit has been valuable in helping expanding the market for Energy Star manufactured homes, which currently make up approximately five percent of total manufactured homes sales nationwide. However, the high cost of building to Energy Star standards remains a barrier to affordable housing. Increasing the credit will be instrumental in placing Energy Star homes within reach of moderate- and low-income families.

MHI, along with a broad coalition of energy efficiency, environmental, and affordable housing organizations have expressed strong support for extending and expanding the Energy Star tax credit for manufactured and modular homes.

KEY TALKING POINTS:

  • Senators are asked to endorse the Advanced Energy Tax Incentives Act of 2010 (S. 3935), to promote energy efficiency for manufactured and modular homes for the following reasons:
  • For the highly price sensitive manufactured housing market, these credits are vital to helping buyers afford the added costs of purchasing an Energy Star home
  • For manufactured homes, energy costs represent a larger proportion of the total costs of homeownership versus site-built housing; energy price hikes are felt most acutely among owners of manufactured homes
  • For moderate- and low-income households, escalating energy prices are more likely to translate into real declines in disposable income and pose a major impediment to building equity and financial security
  • The energy savings associated with owning and Energy Start home more than compensate for the higher construction costs. In high cost energy areas, for instance, cost savings can total roughly $800 or more per year.
  • The tax credit is viewed by a growing number of state and local government agencies, as well as housing and energy efficiency advocates as a critical foundation for encouraging Energy Star manufactured home construction.
  • The tax credit has moved state governments and utilities to offer companion programs to promote Energy Star predicated on the availability of the tax credit. The delay in extending the tax credit has begun to slowly unwind these initiatives that are so vital to building support for Energy Star around the nation.

ACTION NEEDED:

MHI members are urged to contact members of the Senate Finance Committee and ask them to co-sponsor S. 3935. A list of Finance Committee members is below and a draft letter is also attached for your convenience.

SENATE FINANCE COMMITTEE

Chairman
Max Baucus (D-MT)
  202-224-2651
Ranking Member
Chuck Grassley (R-IA)
  202-224-3744
     
Democrats    
John D. Rockefeller, IV (WV)   202-224-6472
Kent Conrad (ND)   202-224-2043
Jeff Bingaman (NM)   202-224-5521
Blanche L. Lincoln (AR)   202-224-4843
John F. Kerry (MA)   202-224-2742
Ron Wyden (OR)   202-224-5244
Charles E. Schumer (NY)   202-224-6542
Debbie Stabenow (MI)   202-224-4822
Maria Cantwell (WA)   202-224-3441
Bill Nelson (FL)   202-224-5274
Robert Menendez (NJ)   202-224-4744
Thomas R. Carper (DE)   202-224-2441
     
Republicans    
Orrin G. Hatch (UT)   202-224-5251
Olympia J. Snowe (ME)   202- 224-5344
Jon Kyl (AZ)   202-224-4521
Jim Bunning (KY)   202-224-4343
Mike Crapo (ID)   202-224-6142
Pat Roberts (KS)   202-224-4774
John Ensign (NV)   202-224-6244
Michael B. Enzi (WY)   202-224-3424
John Cornyn (TX)   202-224-2934

Download Word doc of Sample Letter to Committee Members. (PDF version)

If you are a member and have questions, contact MHI Vice President of Political and Legislative Affairs Rae Ann Bevington at 703-558-0675 or RBevington@mfghome.org or Vice President Legislative Affairs Jason Boehlert at 703-558-0660 or JBoehlert@mfghome.org