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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

Council Votes for Modular Project; Candidates for Council Oppose it

Council Votes for Modular Project; Candidates for Council Oppose it

Following a story MHProNews  posted Sept. 5, 2014 regarding a proposed 166 unit modular housing complex straddling the S. Alouette River in the Maple Ridge area of Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, the proposal has become an item for debate among candidates for the Maple Ridge Council election set for Nov. 15. The current council voted […]...

25 Oct 2014

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Dow Jones: Best Week in Two Years

Dow Jones: Best Week in Two Years

The Dow Jones Industrial Average posted its best week in nearly two years, gaining 426 points, as many of the housing stocks we track also landed in the black in today’s trading. Dow 16,805.41 +127.51 (+0.76%). Nasdaq 4,483.72 +30.93 (+0.69%). S&P 500 1,964.58 +13.76 (+0.71%). The Yahoo! Finance Manufactured Housing Composite Value:...

24 Oct 2014

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Fires, Mobile and Manufactured Housing in the News

Fires, Mobile and Manufactured Housing in the News

One of the more common local stories that news feeds bring MHProNews  are those related to “mobile home” fires. Some are tragic, others arson or human error. Many of these are obviously pre-HUD Code “mobile homes,” not manufactured homes.  The home that burned in Sumter County, Florida falls into a gray area of not being ab...

24 Oct 2014

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MH Component Supplier Lippert Expanding IDS in Michigan

MH Component Supplier Lippert Expanding IDS in Michigan

Elkhart, Ind.-based manufactured housing component supplier Lippert Components Inc., will receive a $200,000 Michigan Business Development Program grant for a $1.7 million investment creating 102 jobs in an expansion of recently acquired Innovative Design Solutions, Inc (IDS). The Michigan Economic Development Corporation announced approval for...

24 Oct 2014

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Non-profit Housing Agency Building Own HUD Code and Modular Homes

Non-profit Housing Agency Building Own HUD Code and Modular Homes

A nonprofit in New Hampshire that has been helping low-income families find housing for nearly 25 years has begun designing and selling its own version of energy-efficient manufactured and modular housing. Affordable Housing Education and Development (AHEAD), owning/operating 300 + units for seniors, families and individuals with disabilities, has...

24 Oct 2014

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Easton Rents Hold, but Community Owners Must Make Repairs

Easton Rents Hold, but Community Owners Must Make Repairs

Following a story MHProNews  last reported on July 2, 2014 regarding conditions and rent at the Easton Mobile Home Park in Easton, Massachusetts, the Board of Selectmen refused to roll back rents from $468 to $293. Acting as the Mobile Home Park Rent Control Board, the board members expressed fears the financially-troubled Morgan Management might ...

24 Oct 2014

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Manufactured Housing Stocks Perform Well in Today’s Trading

Manufactured Housing Stocks Perform Well in Today’s Trading

Strong third quarter corporate results fed investors’ appetite, spurring the three major indexes to continue regaining losses incurred earlier this month. All but one MH related stock rose or remained unchanged. UFPI gained the most of tracked stocks, moving up +3.68 percent. Dow Jones Industrial Average 16,677.90 +216.58 (+1.32%). Nasdaq...

23 Oct 2014

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Millennials Pushing Homeownership to a New Normal

Millennials Pushing Homeownership to a New Normal

The National Association of Realtors (NAR) reports homeownership for the under 35 year-old crowd has fallen from 43 percent in 2005 to 36 percent today, according to nationaljournal. Even with very affordable interest rates, the Millennial generation in many cases is saddled with student debt, putting a damper on their credit scores, and with...

23 Oct 2014

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International Real Estate Buyers Spur U. S. Housing Market

International Real Estate Buyers Spur U. S. Housing Market

A growing trend for the last decade has been an influx of foreign buyers from Asia, Australia and Europe purchasing homes in the U. S., which is actually helping the real estate market price recovery. A report by the National Association of Realtors says $22 billion of the $92 billion spent by international buyers in […]...

23 Oct 2014

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Manufactured Housing Residents Eligible for No-cost Repair Loans

Manufactured Housing Residents Eligible for No-cost Repair Loans

The Housing Authority of the City of Napa (HACN) will administer a no-cost home repair loan over a 30-year term to low-income residents who need repairs and upgrades to their homes in Calistoga, California. The half-million grant will be available to those who make 80 percent or less of the area’s median income of $65,900 […]...

23 Oct 2014

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Sunrise Manufactured Home Community will see Upgrades without RVs

Sunrise Manufactured Home Community will see Upgrades without RVs

According to sidneyherald,  Robert Emery’s application to update his Sunrise Mobile Home Park in Richland County, Montana has been approved by the Richland County Commissioners. Recreational vehicles (RVs) will be banned from the community which will have 19 manufactured homes with 20 feet between each unit, a turnaround area for emergency ...

23 Oct 2014

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Featured Articles and Reports - October 2014 Vol. 6 No. 1

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Green Home Marketing is a Challenge

Green Home Marketing is a Challenge

by Steven Lefler I do not know about you, but I find marketing green homes to be a challenge. The public reads or watches TV shows about these unique homes and... Read more

MARKETING

An analysis of Norm Schultz - We need the horsepower of the RV industry

An analysis of Norm Schultz - We need the horsepower of the RV industry

by L. A. “Tony” Kovach One of our industry friends sent in the article that follows below, with this single line message above their signature/contact info: “Everyone thinks an image campaign... Read more

MARKETING

Get Business Exposure With Facebook Ads for Cheap

Get Business Exposure With Facebook Ads for Cheap

facebook adsIf you are like most business owners, you're constantly on the lookout for effective, low-cost ways to get maximum exposure for your business. Whether you are look for more... Read more

MARKETING

What does it take to Change Minds?

What does it take to Change Minds?

by L. A. “Tony” Kovach The headline is a question every manufactured housing (MH) professional worth her or his salt should ask regularly! How does one change a mind? Why is this... Read more

MARKETING

Why the “ICE BUCKET CHALLENGE” Wasn’t ‘Trademarked’

Why the “ICE BUCKET CHALLENGE” Wasn’t ‘Trademarked’

by David Baker, JD Have you taken the ALS “Ice Bucket Challenge”? If not, you may be one of the few Americans left who wasn’t caught up in the remarkably successful... Read more

COMMUNITY MANAGEMENT & FAIR HOUSING (LEGAL)

“Hello, this call is a …”

“Hello, this call is a …”

by Nadeen Green, JD What? A sales pitch? A political robo-call? Somebody calling to ask you to donate money (again!)? A TDD call? Say what? A TDD call? What is that? Read more

COMMUNITY MANAGEMENT & FAIR HOUSING (LEGAL)

A Doctoral Dissertation on Manufactured Housing and why it matters to the I…

A Doctoral Dissertation on Manufactured Housing and why it matters to the Industry

by Lisa Tyler The doctorate journey is a cycle of processes that is often misunderstood. The designation of “doctoral candidate” signifies the completion of post-graduate coursework and focus on completing the... Read more

GENERAL MANUFACTURED HOUSING INDUSTRY TOPICS

News of the New

News of the New

by Bob Vahsholtz New fangled news media can befuddle old timers like me, but fresh, crisp and honest? Wow, what’s not to like! I’m spending more time on Tony’s sites than... Read more

GENERAL MANUFACTURED HOUSING INDUSTRY TOPICS

Manufactured Housing Industry - Phoenix Rising!

Manufactured Housing Industry - Phoenix Rising!

by Dennis Hill You don't have to look far for signs that manufactured housing (MH) is continuing the recovery since hitting bottom in 2009. I recall Ron Thomas, Sr. saying that... Read more

GENERAL MANUFACTURED HOUSING INDUSTRY TOPICS

The Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) Holds their 78th Annual Meeting

The Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) Holds their 78th Annual Meeting

by MHI Staff MHI held its 78th Annual Meeting in Scottsdale, Arizona with 143 members and guests in attendance.  The event was on September 14-16th, at the Westin Kierland Resort & Spa,... Read more

GENERAL MANUFACTURED HOUSING INDUSTRY TOPICS

Manufactured Housing Professionals News – MHProNews - 5th Anniversary Cele…

Manufactured Housing Professionals News – MHProNews - 5th Anniversary  Celebration, Kudos and Quotable Quotes!

by Manufactured Housing Industry Leaders Thousands of manufactured and modular home professionals recall the days of the MH Merchandiser and other now defunct trade magazines; but thousands more have never known... Read more

GENERAL MANUFACTURED HOUSING INDUSTRY TOPICS

Quotes from Manufactured Housing Industry Leaders and A Cup of Coffee with.…

Quotes from Manufactured Housing Industry Leaders and A Cup of Coffee with...

by L. A. “Tony” Kovach Some of the most popular articles we have every month are from our periodic interview with manufactured housing industry leaders. “A Cup of Coffee with...”... Read more

GENERAL MANUFACTURED HOUSING INDUSTRY TOPICS

Marty Lavin's Comparison – The Merchandiser Magazine vs. MHProNews

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by Marty Lavin, JD Editor's Note: For those who know Marty Lavin, you know the man has a long, storied and successful career in manufactured housing retail, finance and communities. Marty's... Read more

GENERAL MANUFACTURED HOUSING INDUSTRY TOPICS

Remember - It all started with a Mouse!

Remember - It all started with a Mouse!

by L. A. “Tony” Kovach “I only hope that we never lose sight of one thing — that it was all started by a mouse.” - Walt Disney. Disney's legendary creativity and vision lead him to do... Read more

MANAGEMENT

The best day of your life

The best day of your life

by Tim Connor, CSP Too often we get stuck in the negatives in life and fail to remember those special days, events or weeks and even years that bring a smile... Read more

PERSONAL REFLECTIONS, MOTIVATION and INSPIRATION

ZigOn Cheating

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by Zig Ziglar With schools welcoming children back from the summer break, the following message is particularly timely. The good news is that whatever we have learned we can also unlearn... Read more

PERSONAL REFLECTIONS, MOTIVATION and INSPIRATION

An Alternate Approach to The High Cost Of Low Volume Sales, or Why Doing M…

An Alternate Approach to The High Cost Of Low Volume Sales, or  Why Doing Manufactured Housing Correctly Pays

by Ron D'Ambra After reading Tony's article on this subject, I was prompted to recall my retail experience, which would forever change my attitude towards a "retailer," and his or her... Read more

SALES

Upcoming Events

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MHLIVINGNEWS.COM FEATURED HOME OF THE WEEK

Classifieds

Press Releases

ROC USA® Network Welcomes MH Industry Ve…

ROC USA® Network Welcomes MH Industry Veteran  As new National Acquisitions & Portfolio Manager

CONCORD, N.H. — Jason Carter has joined the management team at ROC USA Network as National Acquisitions and Portfolio Manager. He begins his new role Nov. 3. Carter’s primary focus is to identify MH community owners interested in selling their communities to their residents and, with ROC USA Network affiliates across the country, execute on resident purchases. ROC USA Network Director Mary O’Hara said Carter’s years of experience with MH manufacturing, sales, community operations and development will be a significant benefit to ROC USA’s affiliates and clients. His appreciation for manufactured housing as affordable housing and his understanding of what it takes to own and operate a community are critical in today’s marketplace, she said. “ROC USA Network has established a proven track record over the last six years, achieving a level...

Soheyla Kovach 16 Oct 2014 Corporate Press Releases

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RV/MH Heritage Foundation Unveils New $1…

RV/MH Heritage Foundation Unveils New $1 Million Campaign Exclusively for the Manufactured Housing Industry

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz., - Darryl Searer, chairman and president of the RV/MH Hall of Fame (Hall) and Barry Cole, president of MH Insurance Services and past chairman of the Hall, spoke to a group of manufactured housing (MH) executives at the Manufactured Housing Institute's 78th Annual Meeting on September 15th  at the Westin  Resort  in Scottsdale, Arizona.  They unveiled a new five-year fundraiser especially for the MH industry designed to help theHall retire its debt. After updating the MH leaders of the Hall's current financial position, Searer urged the attendees to help the Hall retire its debt by pledging their support for the campaign. Explaining to the group that the Hall's debt was a result of unfulfilled pledges Mr. Cole commented, "In 2007 our idea was to construct a great legacy building that would include an event center, library and museum with unique...

L.A. Tony Kovach 03 Oct 2014 Corporate Press Releases

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2015 Louisville Manufactured Housing Sho…

2015 Louisville Manufactured Housing Show is filling up fast and early!

Attendees, mark your calanders now, pre-registration will open on October 1, 2014. Exhibitors, Reserve your space now.  See download linked here.

the MHMSM Team 02 Sep 2014 Corporate Press Releases

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RV/MH Heritage Foundation Inducts the Cl…

RV/MH Heritage Foundation Inducts the Class of 2014 into RV/MH Hall of Fame

(Back row l-r) Thomas "Tom" L. Kern, Style Crest Enterprises; Ed Evans, EPM; Gary McDaniel, YES! Communities ; Richard "Dick" King, King Insurance (second row row l-r) Barry Cole, Manufactured Housing Insurance Services; Bob Livingston, Good Sam; John D Roba, Roba and Associates (front row l-r) Mrs. James F Shields. accepting on behalf of her husband,James F Shields (deceased), Pan Pacific RV Centers; Debbie Brunoforte, Little Dealer, Little Prices and Peter B Orthwein, Thor Industries. ELKHART, Ind., August 5. 2014 -- The Class of 2014 was inducted into the RV/MH Hall of Fame (Hall) last night in Elkhart, Indiana, in a gala ceremony before a record breaking crowd of more than 440 family members, friends, and colleagues from across the country. The Class of 2014 includes: Debbie Brunoforte, Little Dealer, Little Prices;...

the MHMSM Team 05 Aug 2014 Corporate Press Releases

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Steve Lefler - Modular Lifestyles and Ne…

Steve Lefler - Modular Lifestyles and Newport Pacific – Successfully Gaining Acceptance for Super Energy Saving, Green Manufactured Homes

Learn more at the article linked here, or by calling Steve Lefler, Vice President of Modular Lifestyles, Inc., a division of Newport Pacific Family of Companies at Ph. (888) 437-4587. Email steve@modularlifestyles.com. Steve is a Dual DRE and HCD Salesperson. Advanced Green Building Professional. CEC Solar Wind Retailer/Installer. http://www.modularlifestyles.com ##

the MHMSM Team 01 Aug 2014 Corporate Press Releases

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