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by Michael DuPure

(Editor's Intro: Mike's high volume sales performance has worked in both the retail and community based sales operations. We're pleased to have him back from last month, if you want to enhance your sales and missed his previous articles, check it out in our archives!)

Mike DuPure photoCompanies and trainers talk about good referral business, and try to keep the sales team aware of the fact that word of mouth is some of the best advertising. By all accounts it most definitely is valuable! On the home retailing side of the MH Community business, the most obvious referral is of course one's present residents. Through the years, I've seen that good internal Customer Service is important - and in the electronic age today - it is essential. But there is another source of referral business that is often overlooked…

Too many in the community business ignore or avoid the needs of those residents who are selling their manufactured homes, seeing it as a loss to be avoided. Most of the time it is a life change that prompts their decision: some unfortunate family tragedy, unemployment, a new job, another child on the way, divorce, illness, a death in the family or some other reason forcing a move and the start of a new page in life. Whatever the case, in a well run community, perhaps 90% of the residents loved being there. Thus they deserve better treatment from sales and community management - yes, even when they are leaving us! Besides, the exiting resident is just as much a possible source for referral business as the incoming or existing residents are!

When giving good customer service, we must walk the walk and talk the talk ALL the time. Brokered home sales should be picking up! By treating the existing resident like gold, whether they've been with your location for 2 years or 20 years, you are opening up opportunities for sales to that departing resident's circle of influence that is still going to be in your area!

The exiting resident's interests needs to be accommodated in the best possible way, just as much as you should treat the prospective client who is considering purchasing a new home. In all sincerity, we should all remember this: "Coming or Going, You're all Valuable to Me!"

In areas where brokers from outside your MH Community are active, those brokers come in, list and sell ANY resident they can, operating on the theory - coming or going - the client is valuable! Okay, then think about both the revenue stream AND the good will stream you get when you treat everyone like gold, regardless if they are moving in or moving out!

Earlier, I mentioned how in the electronic age, good customer service is more important than ever. For those who are mentally stuck in the pre-internet past, you may not realize how devastatingly easy an upset customer or resident can tar and feather you and your firm online. I've seen businesses and communities that in a Google or Yahoo search have multiple negative comments next to their 1 star rated report. People no longer have to call the Better Business Bureau, they can simply go online and post a comment about your business, next to your search, on their Facebook or Twitter pages, or any number of other ways.

But think! The reverse is also true! If you give great service, your client is thanking you, why not ask them for that good rating? Why not ask them to give you a letter of reference? Why not post that letter of reference online, at your website, Facebook page, etc.? Getting good references are EASY when you give good service, because then you can easily ASK for the reference, and what are they likely to say after you've treated them so well?

A while back, at a location that I had recently arrived at, I took a resident that I didn't sell, and sat down to listen to their service concerns. I did my best to resolve it, even though it wasn't my client (and thus wasn't my commission). This once unhappy resident became utterly delighted in short order, their issues were resolved with a "let me see what I can do, thank you for your residency" and a smile! Once happy, it was easy to ask for a letter of reference. The letter the lady wrote was simply aglow with praise, as if she had been given great service from day one.

Now if that is possible with a client who starts out upset, IMAGINE what YOU can do with the client who is coming in fresh, and you are the one that is in control of their total experience!

With these basic points in mind, let's look at the following strategy for those "coming or going."

First list all resident's homes. Don't just list it to keep them on the hook, list them with the idea that you are going to help them sell it!

Remember (and if necessary, remind them) that we already know them and their home better than some outside service. Then, get them involved in the selling process. Give them tips on preparing the home for showing it at its best.

Now, with this added inventory, new prospects who are calling in have an even wider and more diversified selection available to them! You as the sales person have more opportunities to help them sell!

The resident who is leaving and is in a positive frame of mind is just as valuable as the new resident who is coming in. Just the other day, I contacted a resident that had their home listed with an outside dealer which expired. She was discouraged. Well, I explained to her that my community manager had described all the remodeling she had done in their home. She asked me how much to advertise and list the home. I said nothing, we did it all at no charge, and only took our commission when the home was sold. She was quite amazed at the positive attitude she was getting and all this good attention to her and her needs. She asked, why do you care so much, when you know that I am moving? I told her you've been a long time resident here with us in her beautiful home for a long time and we definitely have appreciated her as a resident. This lady promptly began spreading the word…and you know the result!

Need I say any more?

Treat them ALL like gold, and you'll never regret it! "Coming or Going, You're all Valuable to Me"

Mike DuPure photoMichael K. DuPure, Sales Manager for Michigan based Choice Properties, is an 11 year veteran of the Manufactured Home industry, plus years of other sales and management experience. As noted last month, Mr. DuPure was a catalyst in a 3 man sales team that closed 75 Manufactured Home contracts in 90 days! That impressive result occurred not years ago, in some heady boom era, but in 2009 - during this long 'housing bust' and in a downward spiraling market. Mike has sold in MH and modular home retail sales and in manufactured home community based sales environments. He has not only set sales records for the firms he works for, but has also ignited record sales for the teams he has worked with. You can contact Mike via his comment post box below this column. Post your comments, questions and feedback below - and don't be surprised if Mr. DuPure personally responds to your statements and inquiries!

Daily Business News Briefs

Some Katrina Victims just now Receiving Housing Assistance

Some Katrina Victims just now Receiving Housing Assistance

Ten years after Hurricane Katrina took out some 60,000 homes, the Mississippi Development Authority (MDA) has determined the federal government poured over $3.2 billion into permanent homes for state residents, according to what sunherald tells MHProNews. Former COO for MDA’s disaster-recovery division, Jon Mabry, said, “When we received the...

29 Aug 2015

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Oil Price Drop will Cost Jobs, Reduce Home Values

Oil Price Drop will Cost Jobs, Reduce Home Values

While home values dropped drastically for most of the nation following the housing bubble, the oil-producing states posted housing gains. With crude oil trading at half the price of a year ago, according to nationalmortgagenews, New Mexico, North Dakota, Oklahoma, Wyoming and Alaska may see home prices fall six to 20 percent over the next […]...

29 Aug 2015

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Legos on Steroids for Modular Disaster Housing?

Legos on Steroids for Modular Disaster Housing?

Arnon Rosan is the founder of EverBlock, an adult version of Legos, polypropylene blocks up to a foot long that lock together and stack with raised lugs much like Legos, as wired tells MHProNews. He currently makes them in 14 colors and three sizes with the largest one weighing two pounds, and offers instructions on […]...

28 Aug 2015

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Stock Market ends Week much Less Volatile

Stock Market ends Week much Less Volatile

In the news from CNNMoney: Consumer spending rose three-tenths of a percent in July. Hackers have stolen $1.2 billion from 7,000 businesses in two years. ATM fees rise again. China’s stock market has lost over $3 trillion in one month. Brazil falls into deep depression. Meanwhile, the Yahoo Manufactured Housing Composite Value (MHCV) gained...

28 Aug 2015

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Title Company Head says Mortgage Disclosure Rules will Delay Home Sales

Title Company Head says Mortgage Disclosure Rules will Delay Home Sales

Ted C. Jones, chief economist and senior vice president for Stewart Title Guaranty Co. in Houston, says financing the buying and selling of houses will be much more difficult when the mortgage disclosure rules go in to effect Oct. 1, as newsok tells MHProNews. “We’re going to continue to have more renters than owners than […]...

28 Aug 2015

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Manufactured Home Code Enforcement in City Hands

Manufactured Home Code Enforcement in City Hands

Following a story MHProNews last posted on Feb. 24, 2015 regarding the closing of the Life O’Riley manufactured home community the previous year, and subsequent forced evacuation of all the residents in ten days because of unsanitary conditions, code enforcement has been moved back from the state to the city. As wlns-tv reports,...

28 Aug 2015

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NYC Students Entering a Modular Home in Solar Decathlon

NYC Students Entering a Modular Home in Solar Decathlon

Undergraduate students at the New York City College of Technology are busy building a modular, environmentally conscious solar home to enter into the U. S. Department of Energy’s Solar Decathlon competition this fall, according to nbcnewyork. The DURA house—diverse, urban, resilient, adaptable—is an open-concept, one-bedroom, net zero wea...

28 Aug 2015

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July’s Pending Home Sales Slow on Short Supply

The National Association of Realtor’s (NAR) Pending Home Sales Index rose 0.05 percent in July to 110.9, according to forbes, 7.4 percent higher than July, 2014 when the index was 103.3. This follows a drop of 1.8 percent in June to 110.3, as MHProNews reported July 30, 2015. (An index of 100 represents average contractual […]...

27 Aug 2015

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Near All Manufactured Housing Stocks Close Up; Dow Gains Strength

Near All Manufactured Housing Stocks Close Up; Dow Gains Strength

In the news from CNNMoney: Oil rises ten percent. Donald Trump says tax the rich more. U. S. Gross Domestic Product rose 3.7 percent in 2nd quarter, stronger than expected. China’s lowered demand for copper hurting U. S. jobs. Meanwhile, the Yahoo Manufactured Housing Composite Value (MHCV) lost -0.57 percent to close at 892.8. All […]...

27 Aug 2015

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Judge Rules Manufactured Home Community’s Right to Replace Homes

Judge Rules Manufactured Home Community’s Right to Replace Homes

Updating a story MHProNews published Jan. 16, 2015 regarding the city of Pearl, Mississippi’s attempt to prevent a manufactured home community (MHC) from refilling vacated sites with manufactured homes (MH), Madison-Rankin Circuit Judge John H. Emfinger ruled the city does not have that authority, saying the ordinance would destroy the...

27 Aug 2015

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Skyline Corp. Reports Q4 and Fiscal Year 2015 Financials

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27 Aug 2015

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Featured Articles and Reports - August 2015 Vol. 6 No. 11

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Piketty Vs. Rognlie: Land Use Restrictions Inflate Housing Values, Drive We…

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Questionable FEMA “Request For Information” Regarding Standardization Of Ma…

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New Manufactured Home Charity Launched

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Manufactured Housing and Achieving Net Zero

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The Lights Are On, But You're Not Home?!?

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Another Cup of Coffee with... – MH Industry Leaders Exclusive Interviews

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It's All About Happy Customers, Experts and You!

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Do you have any “Emotional Deadwood” hiding out in your organization?

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MANAGEMENT

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PERSONAL REFLECTIONS, MOTIVATION and INSPIRATION

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Press Releases

Datacomp Turns New Manufactured Home App…

Datacomp Turns New Manufactured Home Appraisal Rules Into Powerful Retail Sales Tool

Contact: Datacomp800.365.1415www.datacompusa.com Grand Rapids, Michigan – Datacomp, the nation’s largest, independent provider of market-based manufactured home appraisals, has announced the availability of the Datacomp MSRV, or Market-Suggested Retail Value, a comprehensive new home valuation service intended to enable compliance with the new appraisal rules for Higher-Priced Mortgage Loans (HPML), now in effect for most financed manufactured home transactions. “The information needed to order a Datacomp MSRV for a new home transaction can be entered on our website in a matter of minutes,” said Dan Rinzema, President and CEO of Datacomp. “There’s no cumbersome data entry process or specialized knowledge necessary. We’ve made it so anyone in the office can easily order a valuation from their desktop computer, tablet or mobile device.” In addition to developing a Lender Final Sale Certificate that is...

the MHMSM Team 12 Aug 2015 Corporate Press Releases

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CU Factory Built Lending and the new HPM…

CU Factory Built Lending and the new HPML Appraisal Rule for Manufactured Housing

Directed by the upcoming changes in the HPML Appraisal Rule effective July 18th, 2015 and driven to minimize its impact on both our business partners and consumers, CU Factory Built Lending (CUFBL) has developed our approach to compliantly reconciling manufactured home loans under the new HPML Appraisal Rule.  Our plan’s key components are: Non-Qualified Mortgages (non-QM’s) Flexible Valuation Options Business Partner and consumer friendly Compliant   Non-Qualified Mortgages CUFBL, in support of the industry and our members, has chosen to continue to offer non-QM loans. If you recall, Qualified Mortgages (QM’s) are more restrictive in the debt ratio allowed, in the amount of points and fees allowed to be charged, may have more stringent length of employment and income verification guidelines, and documentation requirements for the consumer. We feel this approach to continue to offer non-QM loans...

the MHMSM Team 17 Jul 2015 Corporate Press Releases

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NADAguides New Manufactured Home Price T…

NADAguides New Manufactured Home Price Tool Will Comply With New HPML Appraisal Rule

· NADAguides New Manufactured Home Price Tool was developed to comply with the new Higher-Priced Mortgage Loans (HPML) Appraisal Rule effective July 18, 2015 · New Manufactured Home Price Tool provides an independent third party evaluation report that can be quickly and conveniently pulled and printed from any location · Allows access to new retail prices for new 2014 and 2015 manufacturer floor plans (both HUD and Modular-Coded), including a wide variety of factory-added options · This NADAguides price tool is currently being offered as a free trial of 100 price reports (retail value of $2,100) – offer expires July 17, 2015 NADAguides.com, the largest publisher of the most market-reflective pricing and information available for manufactured homes, announces its New Manufactured Home Price Tool, which has been developed to comply with the new Higher-Priced Mortgage Loans (HPML)...

the MHMSM Team 14 Jul 2015 Corporate Press Releases

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RV/MH Hall of Fame 2015 Induction Dinner…

RV/MH Hall of Fame 2015 Induction Dinner Reservations Outpace Last Year's Event

ELKHART, Ind. -- The RV/MH Hall of Fame's Induction Dinner Committee Chairman Mark Wasson (Bluelinx Corporation), reports reservations for the induction dinner honoring the Class of 2015 are running ahead of last year's reservations.  Wasson said, "As of early June 15th more than 153 friends and family of the inductees have registered which is ahead of last year's record pace of registrations." In addition to these reservations, Golf committee chairman Trey Miller is signing up foursomes for the 2015 RV/MH Hall of Fame Golf Classic.  So far 11 companies and individuals have signed on as sponsors for the dinner and golf, according to Darryl Searer, president, RV/MH Hall of Fame (Hall). This year's RV/MH Hall of Fame's annual Induction Dinner will be held on August 3, 2015, at the Hall of Fame's Event Center...

the MHMSM Team 16 Jun 2015 Corporate Press Releases

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RV/MH Museum Unveils Historic Shasta Exh…

RV/MH Museum Unveils Historic Shasta Exhibit

ELKHART, Ind. -- The RV/MH Hall of Fame and Museum's newest exhibit features a retrospective on the evolution of the iconic Shasta brand of travel trailers, according to Darryl Searer, president, RV/MH Hall of Fame (Hall).  The display includes a 1954 Shasta that's been in the museum's inventory for years and a 2015 reissue of a 1961 Shasta Airflyte 16sc, courtesy of Mick Ferkey, owner of Greeneway RV, Wisconsin Rapids, Wisconsin, and a member of the RV/MH Hall of Fame board of directors. While the reissue of a 1961 Shasta Airflyte 16sc has the look and style of the 1960s model, it is fully equipped with modern features and appliances, including a full bath. Searer noted, "Shasta has a rich heritage and is the industry's longest producer of RVs.  The brand has been...

the MHMSM Team 19 May 2015 Corporate Press Releases

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Dodd-Frank and Manufactured Home Financi…

Dodd-Frank and Manufactured Home Financing: The Place Where Good Intentions and Unintended Consequences Collide

"The path to home ownership lay before him, smooth and attainable as never before. All Eric Powell had to do was secure a small loan. He had a steady job, a decent credit score and a wife who happened to work for a bank: What could possibly go wrong?" WASHINGTON, D.C. -- The U.S. Senate Banking Committee will take up a measure that may determine whether millions of low- to moderate-income consumers will be able to buy or sell modestly priced homes. The Preserving Access to Manufactured Housing Act (HR 650 and S 682) addresses the unintended consequences of the Dodd-Frank Act, passed to protect consumers in the wake of the subprime mortgage crisis. According to former Congressman Barney Frank, the act's co-sponsor, Dodd-Frank was never intended to apply to manufactured housing. Yet the...

the MHMSM Team 19 May 2015 Corporate Press Releases

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