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A Cup of Hot Cocoa with...An MHMSM.com exclusive interview with Doug Gorman

1) Who, What and Where: (Your name, and your role/job title at Home-Mart, your association roles, etc.)

Doug Gorman, President, Home-Mart, Inc. Doug says "You are welcome to have the coffee, I will have cocoa. I have never had a cup of coffee in my life."

Manufactured Housing Consensus Committee Member
Appointed by Secretary Mel Martinez in 2001 at the time of its creation.
Currently serve as chair of Regulatory Enforcement Subcommmittee
Manufactured Housing Education Institute board member and past chairman
Manufactured Housing Association of Oklahoma (MHAO) board member and past president
Co-Chairman for The Great Southwest Home Show sponsored by MHAO.

Local non-profit affiliations:
Community Action Project board member
Tulsa Day Center for the Homeless board member
Junior Achievement instructor

2) Background (brief Educational/Professional snapshot before entering the factory-built housing arena):

Doug GormanI went to high school at Campbell High School in Smyrna, Georgia with Julia Roberts. OK, she came through 17 years after me, but we were close. :o) After high school I entered the University of Georgia and pursued a degree in Marketing. I met my wife at Six Flags Over Georgia right after my graduation from high school. Since she had one more year of high school left I drove home every weekend from college to date her. We got married three years to the day after our first date and we both transferred to Georgia State in Atlanta to complete our degrees.

3) When and How: (When and how you got into the Manufactured Housing Industry)

In 1971 my wife and I bought a 12x60 three bedroom front living room from John Moss and Jim Reis at a company called Paramount in Marietta, Georgia. We originally going to buy a 12x52 two bedroom and found out we could get the extra eight feet and the third bedroom for only $800 more. Seemed like a bargain. I added a large covered porch with a storage shed at the end. The house we bought had a lot of proprietary features and was years ahead of industry standards. We were so pleased with the home that I kept bringing other people into the dealership. They finally said look you are selling more homes than we are, why don't you go to work here? My full time job at the time was working the midnight shift as a security guard at Six Flags Over Georgia. Having reluctance to jump into a commission only arrangement, I worked both jobs for about four months. While working both jobs, I was also taking 10 hours of classes at Georgia State University. I was sleeping four hours a day. Two in the morning and two in the evening.

4) What are your personal interests or hobbies? How do you like to spend non-work time?

I am an avid book reader and my wife and I are guilty of having several favorite TV shows we watch together. I do some golf, but very poorly. I like Jeffery Archer (favorite was Kane and Abel), David Baldacci (favorite was Executive Privilege) and I always liked The Firm by Grisham but never got excited over his subsequent books. For business reading I like Michael Gerber's E-Myth.

5) Tell us about your earlier days at Sunrizon and Palm Harbor. A lot of cutting edge items came from those two firms into the manufactured housing world.

In late 1982, Lee Posey and John Moss recruited me to join Palm Harbor as the vice-president of a new division called Magnahome. John had developed a product offering that could allow one to show 96 different floor plans from four homes on display. The concept was incredible then and it would be incredible today. The product was all modular and the four display homes were set up in an environmental setting. John Moss was a huge proponent of environmental displays. I had helped him in that regard since 1974 at Redman Homes.

I was fired at Palm Harbor (not by Lee Posey) in September of 1984. On the day that I was fired I called Mike Bowers who was president of a Palm Harbor affiliate company called Sunrizon Homes. Mike's response to the news of my employment status was to say: "Congratulations! Welcome to the land of opportunity. Can we have breakfast in the morning?". Mike hired me to open sales centers for him in and around Oklahoma City. Later he had me take over sales centers in Eastern Oklahoma which included Tulsa. The Sunrizon product did a great job of having different product lines targeted for different price points. Regardless of the price point Mike always tried to include more value in his home than a competitor's. We utilized a format we called "What's unique about a...?" to emphasize those values.

Sunrizon operated five manufacturing plants all of which were located in the Southwest. The mideighties industry collapse was concentrated in the Southwest where about 75% of the market went away. The market decline along with repurchase obligations associated with some large retailers who in addition to going broke were sold out of trust in the range of hundreds of thousands of dollars each, resulted in Sunrizon going out of business in the summer of 1988. After a brief stint as a vice-president of Tulsa based Lender Service, we opened Home-Mart, Inc. in October of 1988.

Home Mart award sign6) What do you consider the largest challenges facing the industry today?

Availability of money for inventory and retail financing. The appraisal process is also stacked against manufactured housing.

7) What are the biggest challenges to retailers and associations today?

Staying in business. If the associations lose their members you don't end up with a lot of people to "associate". Fewer retailers could doom some state associations. The lack of retailers and state associates then affects the viability of our national trade association.

8) How would you like to see the industry respond to these challenges?

We have statutes on the books now that indicate that GSEs have a "Duty to Serve" the lower end housing markets. We should pursue that requirement through our congressional delegations. The industry has done some positive work with Fannie Mae and with some recent changes from Fannie Mae, the MH Select program may gain some viability.

9) From your perspective, what are some significant initiatives have associations you work with and the Manufactured Housing Consensus Committee undertaken to support the industry?

The Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) has tried several tactics (Customer Satisfaction Index, national advertising platform) in good faith that for various reasons have not panned out. I do not fault them for the termination of these projects. Obviously some manufacturers opposed these efforts strongly enough to through up a roadblock.

The Manufactured Housing Consensus Committee (MHCC) is unique in history of our country. The committee is the first committee in our history to have been created by statute and is staffed by non-paid volunteers. All 21 members of the committee serve without pay. Every proposed change to the HUD Code has to come before the MHCC and be acted upon. The accumulation of face-to-face meetings in Washington, DC and four hour long conference calls usually takes about a month out of the year for each committee member. Some of the key achievements of the MHCC have been the development of national installation standards, the development of a Dispute Resolution process, over 200 changes to Section 3280 construction standards, and a soon to be implanted process that will make on-site issues related to 3280 a simpler process.

10) What do you think the broader industry can do to improve the climate for Manufactured/Modular Housing today?

Deliver on our promises to our customers. Clayton has taken a major positive step with their recent infomercial.

11) What are your thoughts on promoting an industry-wide image building campaign, ala the RV Industry's noteworthy Go RVing multi-media campaign?

I like the idea. I just don't know who has enough money to fund it. I have seen some very general proposals and liked some parts and didn't like other parts. One proposal I saw included some unfair advantages for part of the industry. Ultimately retail drives the machine (with appropriate financing). If we drive up retail sales all else will follow.

12) Other remarks or comments, industry related. Any Closing thoughts?

We are a great industry staffed with many fine people I have been privileged to meet over the past 38 years. I worry about our shipment numbers getting so low that HUD might make a decision to close down our division. To be successful, we have to increase our focus on our clients and make sure we are providing them value.

Daily Business News Briefs

Modular Workforce Housing Planned in Mississippi

Modular Workforce Housing Planned in Mississippi

The possibility of up to seven billion barrels of oil in the Tuscaloosa Marine Shale formation in southwest Mississippi and central Louisiana has led the McComb (Miss.) Board of Selectmen to vote in favor of annexing 40 acres for the construction of a 535-unit modular workforce community. Shale Lodge will include a cafeteria, laundry and […]...

01 Sep 2014

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Hoarding along with dozens of cats found at home in MHC

Hoarding along with dozens of cats found at home in MHC

“Is there an unwritten rule that every third MHCommunity has someone who hoards and/or has a bunch of cats?” quipped manufactured home industry consultant and publisher, L. A. “Tony” Kovach. The comment flowed from the discovery of dozens of cats seized from the Niagara Mobile Home Park in Newfane, NY. “The stench coming from a […]...

01 Sep 2014

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Manufactured Housing’s Labor Day 2014

Manufactured Housing’s Labor Day 2014

Wikipedia says: “Labor Day in the United States is a holiday celebrated on the first Monday in September. It is a celebration of the American labor movement and is dedicated to the social and economic achievements of workers. It constitutes a yearly national tribute to the contributions workers have made to the strength, prosperity, and […]...

01 Sep 2014

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William ‘Bill’ Steenberg, Award winning Steenberg Homes founder, Passage

William ‘Bill’ Steenberg, Award winning Steenberg Homes founder, Passage

William “Bill” Steenberg died Sunday, August 24, 2014, in Ft. Myers Beach, Florida, after a short, courageous battle with cancer. His fiance Wendy was by his side when he passed away. Bill’s children, Julie, Shelly, and Jeffrey and his granddaughter, Miranda, visited a couple weeks earlier in Florida.  Bill founded and owned ...

01 Sep 2014

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Equity LifeStyle’s stock hit record high as August ends

Equity LifeStyle’s stock hit record high as August ends

The glow of investors and commentary for Equity LifeStyle Properties Inc. (NYSE:ELS) hit a peak as August drew to a close. ELS witnessed the stock hitting a record high on Friday. The stock traded as high as $45.81, up 39 cents from yesterday’s record closing price of $45.42. The Street, Trade-Ideas  and Chicago Business  were among […]...

31 Aug 2014

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INC names mancamp provider Reliant Asset Management 3rd fastest growing pri…

INC names mancamp provider Reliant Asset Management 3rd fastest growing private business

Barry Roman is the co-founder of Reliant Asset Management, a provider of mancamps in ND, Texas, Canada and other high demand housing markets. Roman says his modular building company’s revenues rose 55,000 percent in three years, to just over $85 million. Inc Magazine named Reliant to their annual list of high flying companies. Reliant is ...

30 Aug 2014

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Manufactured Housing Stocks Rising before Labor Day Weekend

Manufactured Housing Stocks Rising before Labor Day Weekend

The Dow slipped, while other U.S. exchanges rose and most tracked stocks went up in advance of the Labor Day weekend. Dow 17,063.88 -15.69 (-0.09%). Nasdaq 4,572.95 +15.25 (+0.33%). S&P 500 1,999.93 +3.19 (+0.16%). Yahoo! Finance’s Manufactured Housing Composite Value: 831.1. Today’s Change: +0.12%. Affiliated Managers Group (AMG)...

29 Aug 2014

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Judge says MH class-action lawsuit heading for trial

Judge says MH class-action lawsuit heading for trial

Following up on our previous report on Moscow, Idaho’s Syringa Mobile Home Park legal fracas, Latah County 2nd District Judge John R. Stegner has told attorney’s representing community owner Magar E. Magar and roughly 140 residents that the case is heading to trial to settle the claims and damages. Elizabeth Rudd of the Tribune  tells ...

29 Aug 2014

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Allegations of Flooded, Fixed, Flipped ‘Mobile Homes’ hit state, internatio…

Allegations of Flooded, Fixed, Flipped ‘Mobile Homes’ hit state, international news

The City of Federal Heights is changing building inspection rules in response to a televised investigation in a manufactured home community by 9Wants to Know, exposing safety concerns when flooded “mobile homes are resold to unsuspecting families,” NassauNewsLives tells MHProNews. Hundreds of flood damaged homes were sold rather than scraped. Tho...

29 Aug 2014

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Freddie Mac’s new Manufactured Housing finance program orignated by Walker …

Freddie Mac’s new Manufactured Housing finance program orignated by Walker Dunlop

The new Freddie Mac manufactured housing community (MHC) finance program announced last spring has been originated by Walker & Dunlop (W&D). The loan was for $10.5 million on Longhaven Estates, an MHC in Phoenix, AZ. The financing was secured for Cobblestone Real Estate, LLC, based in Oak Brook, IL, and Tricon Capital Group, based in...

29 Aug 2014

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Canadians Investing Large in U.S. Housing Markets

Canadians Investing Large in U.S. Housing Markets

“In the U.S., given the affordability and the fact that prices in the suburbs went down more significantly than in the cities you will see more and more options and opportunities outside big cities,” said Benjamin Tal, Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce (CIBC) analyst. With Canadian markets hot – and some fear over-heating – the [...

29 Aug 2014

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Featured Articles and Reports - September 2014 Vol. 5 No. 12

Prev Next Page:

UnBranding - a Key to Unlocking the Door to more MH Sales?

UnBranding - a Key to Unlocking the Door to more MH Sales?

by L.A. "Tony" Kovach Years before Palm Harbor Homes went into bankruptcy and eventually ended up with Cavco Industries, Palm Harbor ran TV ads showing beautiful, “residential style” manufactured homes. Read more

MARKETING

“Should We Be a More Aggressive Breed?”

“Should We Be a More Aggressive Breed?”

by Nadeen Green, JD Many if not most manufactured housing folks truly make the effort to be compliant with the Fair Housing Act and are well aware of the need to... Read more

COMMUNITY MANAGEMENT & FAIR HOUSING (LEGAL)

Earthquakes & Other Disasters: Are you Prepared?

Earthquakes & Other Disasters: Are you Prepared?

by C. William Dahlin, JD  As reported by major media outlets, a 6.0 earthquake hit Northern California  in late August on a Sunday. Read more

COMMUNITY MANAGEMENT & FAIR HOUSING (LEGAL)

Pool and Spa Safety

Pool and Spa Safety

by Kathleen Bianculli While the end of summer is drawing near and pools in some areas will be closed for the season, in many areas of the country the pool never... Read more

COMMUNITY MANAGEMENT & FAIR HOUSING (LEGAL)

“How Sweet the Rose” - Senior Housing Communities - Advertising Do's and Do…

“How Sweet the Rose” - Senior Housing Communities - Advertising Do's and Don'ts

by Nadeen Green, JD While a rose may smell sweet no matter what it may be called, names are in fact labels. Using the wrong label when you market your senior... Read more

COMMUNITY MANAGEMENT & FAIR HOUSING (LEGAL)

A Breakthrough in Manufactured Home Loan Financing! Discover the One Step P…

A Breakthrough in Manufactured Home Loan Financing! Discover the One Step Program!

by Jerry Bretton In our previous report on SUN, we mentioned that Mountainside Financial has been making loans on manufactured and mobile homes for 14 years. Read more

FINANCING

Are HUD Practices Making Manufactured Homes Less Affordable?

Are HUD Practices Making Manufactured Homes Less Affordable?

by Ron D'Ambra Let's start by saying that, from a business perspective, MORE government involvement is not always viewed as a good thing. Read more

GENERAL MANUFACTURED HOUSING INDUSTRY TOPICS

3rd Annual Open Space Pace - September 20th, 2014 – Freehold New Jersey

3rd Annual Open Space Pace - September 20th, 2014 – Freehold New Jersey

by Sam Landy Dear Friends, UMH Properties and Monmouth Real Estate Investment Corporation (MNR) sponsor The Open Space Pace at Freehold Raceway September 20, 2014. The event begins with a 10:00 am parade of... Read more

GENERAL MANUFACTURED HOUSING INDUSTRY TOPICS

A Cup of Coffee with… Sheila Dey

A Cup of Coffee with… Sheila Dey

1) Who, What and Where: (Your name, and your role/job title at organization or firm and where you are based.) Sheila S. Dey, JDExecutive DirectorWestern Manufactured Housing Communities Association Read more

GENERAL MANUFACTURED HOUSING INDUSTRY TOPICS

5 Reasons for MHPros to Attend the 2015 Louisville Manufactured Housing Sho…

5 Reasons for MHPros to Attend the 2015 Louisville Manufactured Housing Show

by Dennis Hill We could name more than 5 reasons why manufacturers and exhibiting companies as well 5 reasons why attendees from the ranks of retailers, communities, builder developers, installers and... Read more

GENERAL MANUFACTURED HOUSING INDUSTRY TOPICS

The High Cost of Low Volume MH Sales for Retailers, Communities, Factories …

The High Cost of Low Volume MH Sales for Retailers, Communities, Factories and others

by L. A. “Tony' Kovach We will demonstrate that the cost of not selling more homes is always high.  Capital is tied up in your inventory, location, general overhead, personnel, marketing,... Read more

GENERAL MANUFACTURED HOUSING INDUSTRY TOPICS

Lead, manage or get out of the way

Lead, manage or get out of the way

by Tim Connor, CSP The world is changing at the speed of light. Everything is being touched by this accelerated pace of change. No person, entity, industry, profession, and no part... Read more

MANAGEMENT

Knowledge is Potential Power - 4 Steps and 91 words = Enhanced Manufacture…

Knowledge is Potential Power - 4 Steps and 91 words =  Enhanced Manufactured Housing  Professional Success Infographic

by L. A. “Tony” Kovach We'll share an infographic that explains in 4 easy steps how any MH Industry professional can learn more to earn more. Here is the infographic... Read more

MANAGEMENT

ZigOn Qualities of Success

ZigOn Qualities of Success

by Zig Ziglar Dr. William "Bill" Ross was truly one of a kind and was known for his sense of humor and his zest for life. He had exuberance for... Read more

PERSONAL REFLECTIONS, MOTIVATION and INSPIRATION

Four Ingredients for MH Sales Success

Four Ingredients for MH Sales Success

by Tim Connor, CSP There are four significant areas when it comes to consistent high sales performance. They are: Self-image and self-esteem. Read more

SALES

Upcoming Events

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MHLIVINGNEWS.COM FEATURED HOME OF THE WEEK

Classifieds

Press Releases

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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Sun Communities, Inc. to Acquire America…

Sun Communities, Inc. to Acquire American Land Lease Manufactured Housing Portfolio from Green Courte Partners for $1.32 Billion

Increases Sun Communities' portfolio to 245 communities totaling nearly 90,000 sites in 29 states with a combined enterprise value of approximately $5.1 billion Southfield, MI, July 30, 2014 - Sun Communities, Inc. (NYSE: SUI) (the "Company") today announced that it has entered into an agreement to acquire a portfolio (the "ALL portfolio") from Green Courte Partners, LLC ("GCP") sponsored funds. The ALL portfolio consists of 59 manufactured home communities, including those acquired from American Land Lease, Inc. by GCP in 2009. The communities comprise over 19,000 sites in eleven states, including nearly 11,000 sites located in Florida. Over 14,000 sites, or 73%, of the ALL portfolio are age-restricted.  In connection with this transaction, the Company will assume GCP's right to acquire an additional manufactured home community pursuant to a binding purchase...

the MHMSM Team 31 Jul 2014 Corporate Press Releases

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Mountainside Financial launches Dodd-Fra…

Mountainside Financial launches Dodd-Frank compliant non-MLO, MLO SUN Manufactured/Mobile Home Direct Loans and Refinancing

Using online articles, banner ads and video, Mountainside Financial is announcing the launch of the evolution of their direct lending platform promotion. As a division of San Antonio Credit Union (SACU), Mountainside has a unique 14 year history of making direct to consumer loans on manufactured and mobile homes. Direct loans are often done in "partnership" with brokers, communities, Realtors ®, other housing professionals and manufactured home retailers who refer consumers to them. Anthony Ducharme, Direct Channel Manager for Mountainside, explained how they created their new SUN System with Manufactured Home Professionals in mind who needed a compliant process to navigate SAFE Act and Dodd-Frank regulations enforced by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB). "If you've been originating your own loans, talk to us. If you want to have a legally complaint...

the MHMSM Team 08 Jul 2014 Corporate Press Releases

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Call for Nominations for the RV/MH Hall …

Call for Nominations for the RV/MH Hall of Fame Class of 2015

ELKHART, Ind., -- The RV/MH Hall of Fame Selection Committee has issued a call for nominations for the Class of 2015. Darryl Searer, Hall president, said, "The Hall welcomes nominations from all RV and manufactured housing sectors -- manufacturers, dealers, campgrounds, housing communities, suppliers, user groups, trade media, associations, etc -- for the class of 2015 and beyond. "The nomination guidelines and forms available online atwww.rvmhhalloffame.org/pages/nominations.cfm." According to the guidelines, anyone can nominate a person to the Hall of Fame that meets the eligibility requirements. The only people who may not be considered are those who currently serve on the Hall's Selection Committee. To be eligible the nominee must be, or have been, an active participant in any segment of the recreation vehicle, campground or manufactured housing industries for a minimum of 25 years....

the MHMSM Team 08 Jul 2014 Corporate Press Releases

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Southwest Region Manufactured Home Commu…

Southwest Region Manufactured Home Communities Showing Rent and Occupancy Growth, Outpacing National Average, According to JLT & Associates’ 14-Year Market Summary Report

Grand Rapids, Michigan – JLT & Associates (JLT), the nation’s #1 market research company for the manufactured housing industry, today announced a 14-year summary report of its manufactured home community rent surveys for 6 Southwest markets. Recognized as the industry standard for manufactured home community market analysis for over 20 years, JLT Rent Surveys provide detailed research and information on communities located in 72 markets throughout the United States, including the latest rent trends and statistics, marketing programs and a variety of other useful management insights. The most recent JLT Rent Surveys for the Southwest region cover 261 manufactured home communities encompassing 69,728 homesites in Albuquerque, Greater Kansas City, Greater Phoenix, Las Vegas, Tucson and Salt Lake City. This summary report is based on rent and occupancy trends from 2000 to 2014. Findings...

the MHMSM Team 01 Jul 2014 Corporate Press Releases

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