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Most know the maxim: “The road to hell is paved with good intentions.” The Hill op-ed by Kevin Borden and Jonathan Westin on “The Private Equity Takeover of Americas Neighborhoods” at best typifies hellish "good intentions."

KevinBordenExecDirMHAction-TheHill-postedManufacturedHousingIndustryInFocusMHProNews300x458Key facts they ignored arguably harms those they claim to want to protect.

Using exaggerated or misleading examples distorts genuine dialogue. As an industry veteran and trade publisher, my focus is to correct-the-record regarding their problematic claims about manufactured homes and communities.

Using anti-capitalist lingo, the duo's account begins with Margie Mathers, a retired Florida woman whose site fees (a.k.a. "lot rent" or "ground lease" for her manufactured home) allegedly rose by some $400 in just 3 years. For argument’s sake, let’s presume their claim is true.

It’s what Borden/Westin didn't disclose that’s misleading.

In researching their allegation, this writer contacted a senior manager who previously supervised Buccaneer Estates, North Fort Meyer, Florida -- where they say Mathers lives. It's owned by Equity Lifestyle Properties (ELS). As disclosures, note that supervisor no longer works for ELS.  As a trade publisher, we have industry clients, but ELS isn't among them.

The former ELS manager said Florida has some of the best safeguards for manufactured home community residents. Among them is the prospectus. JonathanWestinNewYorkCommunitiesForChangeExecDirNYFoundationPostedManufacturedHousingIndustryDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews-

Before purchasing a manufactured home – or a pre-HUD Code mobile home - the buyer is given the terms in a prospectus. That prospectus is revealing; binding the resident and community owner. Terms detailed includes ground-lease rate increases, often tied to CPI.

So, while there's no rent control in Florida (a good thing – see linked example – the harm done by rent control can be addressed another time), the consumer knows precisely what to expect.

Furthermore, when a shopper buys an existing home from a long-time resident, they may be able to assume the old prospectus – and thus below-market rates
on the ground-lease.  Those site fees may at year’s end go to market rate, and then follow CPI, or whatever terms that prospectus has.

The point? 

The Borden/Westin example of retiree Mathers is a smokescreen. She was given a prospectus, knew what she was committing to, and purchased anyway. That’s informed freedom-of-choice.

Odds are, Mathers obtained a bargain, not a raw deal. Her site fees adjusted towards a market rate she accepted in her prospectus.

BuchaneerEstatesNFtMeyersFL-ELSproperties-OrigPhotosCreditMHVillage-CollageCreditMHProNews-

Facts and Comparisons Paint a Different Picture

The Borden/Westin example was a shock tactic -- completely misleading to uninformed readers.

For those unfamiliar with land-lease, Hawaii and Maryland are states where conventional housing is routinely built on leased-land.  A few years ago, this writer lived in an upscale manufactured home community in Glenview, Illinois – about half-a-mile from million-dollar-houses built on leased-land.

While they differ, a Home Owners Association (HOA) is a useful comparison. Thousands of conventional housing, townhouses or condominium developments have HOAs. Trulia reported in 2015 that median HOA fees were $310 to $356 in Fort Meyers and Miami.

DataComp/JLT Associates says site fees in Florida average $487 monthly in all-age communities and $478 monthly in 55+ manufactured home land-lease properties. In Florida, the highest fees for waterfront and golf-club style properties are up to $1500 monthly; far less than comparable Sunshine State country-club style developments.

Depending on the U.S. jurisdiction, a manufactured home owner:

  • often pays zero real estate taxes, paying a modest personal-property tax instead;
  • pays tens-of-thousands less up-front for land-lease than purchasing property, especially important for Borden’s and Westin’s example of a senior like Mathers;
  • saves - the U.S. Census Bureau reports new manufactured homes are about half-the-cost of comparable conventional housing - and
  • buying an existing (pre-owned) manufactured home may be thousands less than a new one the same size/location; much the same as new conventional construction is costlier than similar existing housing.

Borden and Westin made retired Mathers look like a victim. More likely, she's intelligent and saved big. Were Borden and Westin deceptive?

All income groups – including the middle class, stars and frugal millionaires - live in manufactured home communities.

Are there ne'er-do-wells in MHVille? Sure, just like any other profession.

Bloomberg, HousingWire, Realtor and Fox News did recent affordable housing stories.  They asked, why aren't more new manufactured homes - which are mistakenly called “trailers” or “mobile homes” - being sold?

Part of the answer lies in hellishly false narratives, like the Borden/Westin op-ed.

We hope Dr. Ben Carson, nominated by President-elect Donald Trump for HUD Secretary, digs into manufactured home realities vs. the misconceptions. We hope he'll clean up manufactured housing regulatory hurdles and enforce the law - the Manufactured Housing Improvement Act of 2000.

If Carson does, taxpayers will save billions - while creating good jobs, as the free market Borden and Westin mistakenly disparaged - produces affordable, quality manufactured homes. ##

tony-kovach-2L. A. “Tony” Kovach is the publisher of MHLivingNews.com and MHProNews.com, the leading trade publications for consumers, manufactured homeowners, MH industry leaders, investors and public policy professionals who want up-to-date lifestyle and business news.

with - Kevin Clayton, Joe Stegmayer, Keith Anderson, Gary McDaniel, Todd Baker and Don Westphal 

"We have to learn how to reach out and communicate with them (Millenials)."

-- Keith Anderson - Champion Home Builders

Model home, Champion Home Builders.

Moderated by energetic 45-year industry veteran Dick Ernst, the "Where Do We Go From Here?" session was the first packed MHI Congress and Expo forum in years.

Some 700 professionals were in the room to hear CEOs:

 Kevin Clayton – Clayton Homes

 Joe Stegmayer – Cavco Industries (CVCO)

 Keith Anderson – Champion Home Builders

 Gary McDaniel – Yes! Communities

 Todd Baker - Equity Lifestyle Properties (ELS)

 Don Westphal, MH development consultant

In the past seven years, the manufactured housing industry's new home shipments have averaged some 8 percent annual growth. Ernst said there is so much potential from the industry's production centers and on-site finish work, that manufactured housing could dominate the affordable housing business.

SantaFeCavcoIndustriesManufacturedHomeSolarHome-MHLivingNews-com-

Sante Fe style home, solar roof panels, Cavco Industries, photo credit MHLivingNews.com

In his tee-up for the opening question to Joe Stegmayer, Ernst noted:

 The U.S. needs 1.3 million to 1.4 million new housing starts a year to keep up with a rising population.

 MH builders sold some 70,000 new HUD Code homes in 2015, with another 700,000 single family houses constructed by site builders.

Was there room, Ernst wondered, for manufactured housing to rise from its recent market share of some 7, 8 or 9 percent of new housing starts a year?

The pithy and witty Stegmayer began with a one word reply.

"Yes."

Once smiles and laughs subsided, Joe explained why there is an opportunity for manufactured housing to grow its market share.

 First-time home buyers generate 55 percent of new mortgages.

 Conventional on-site stick builders are reluctant to build entry level housing units.

 With new starts growing, there is also growth in the affordability gap.

"We don't think we will take over" site-building, Stegmayer said, but we can join that market.

"We've been as high as 15-to-20 percent of all single family homes sold," and Cavco's CEO sees

a significant upside for MH in the total single-family housing market.

Clayton-Homes-iHouse-credit-Inhabitat-postedIndustryinFocus-MHProNews-

Clayton Homes iHouse - photo credit, Inhabitat.

Ernst – Other Factors That Bode Well for MH

Dick Ernst then noted that with:

 Seniors downsizing,

 Single parent households rising, and

 Millennials becoming the largest consumer group, the demographics are ripe for MH.

He asked Kevin Clayton to take attendees behind the scenes of some of Clayton Homes' efforts to attract these potential buyers.

Clayton's CEO said the new generation loved the iHouse, but asked – where do I put it?

A common comment was that buyers want better places to place manufactured homes.

When people traditionally hit their 40s, they were buying houses like crazy. But Clayton believes Millennials won't automatically have that same impulse.

Focus groups that Clayton Homes has done revealed interest in:

 Improved exteriors

 50 percent have concern over quality and safety

The question then becomes: How does one go about changing those perceptions?

Kevin Clayton emphasized the need to change perceptions, and noted that other industries have done it, citing online dating as but one example of how that was successfully done.

Champion's CEO's Take

Champion Home Builders' Keith Anderson jumped in next. Anderson said it was important to get plugged into and reaching out to Millennials.

He stressed they could do it through their own employee base that fits that demographic group, as well as on the consumer side.

"We have to learn how to reach out and communicate with them," Anderson said.

For 18 months, Champion has been using new websites, efforts on social media, MHVillage and other outreaches. They are seeing website hits and leads that rose 500 percent in the last six months

alone.

That clearly validates their efforts.

Gary McDaniel of Yes! Communities talked about the desire for more amenities from community residents, how they are working with demographic groups and seeking to accommodate their respective needs and desires.

Social media is just one of the many outreaches that McDaniel identified. Engaging in their communities, McDaniel said, they learned that residents wanted more "than a clubhouse with a library."

As a result of their engagement, they are exploring water parks, walking trails, learning centers,

partnerships with local colleges, tutoring and helping residents with resumes, among other services.

With the Hispanic community, they are working to help children and adults assimilate and adapt, to become more successful in the U.S.

"If they are happy and successful," in their MHCs, then they will clearly make good long-term residents, McDaniel observed.

Don Westphal – Land Development

Don Westphal noted that in working with both conventional and manufactured home projects, the customers inside those homes are "the same inside."

Those customers want an attractive housing product, landscaped homes, and make their neighborhood look like a place they'd want to live.

He also noted that people are into instant gratification mode, which ought to be an advantage to manufactured housing, with its faster time from start to completion.

"They don't want to wait for months," Westphal said.

ELS-EquityLifestyleProperties-creditMHVillage-PostedMHProNews-com

ELS Promotion on MHVillage.

ELS' Todd Baker

Baker was working in the conventional housing development business before his current work for ELS in manufactured home communities (MHCs).

As head of consumer research, he said that before to entering manufactured housing, they did 10- to 15-page surveys with every single home buyer.

Stressing that a normal response rate to an in-depth survey might be 1 percent, he noted that they enjoyed a 10 percent response rate.

"Buyers wanted to tell us about their biggest purchase," Baker said.

He noted that they buy from each of the builders he was on stage with.

They do a mix of single sectional and multi-sectional homes.

They tend to go with open floorplans, with large kitchens.

"Whatever your price point," Baker said, people routinely want big kitchens.

In surveying buyers, they wanted to know what trade-offs customers where ready to make.

For example, would buyers prefer a larger master bedroom, or a smaller bedroom with a bigger walk-in closet?

WhereDoWeGoFromHere-FutureofManufacturedHomes-Cavco-JoeStegmayerChampion-creditMHLivingNews-com-

Champion Home Builders interior, lower left,
Cavco Chairman and CEO, Joe Stegmayer standing in a Cavco
model home's kitchen, on the right.  Collage photos from MHLivingNews.com


$150K-$175K "All-In" Costs for the Package

With site builders targeting $300,000 for many conventional houses, manufactured housing needs to focus on homes that are $150,000 to $175,000 total for the "all in" cost.

Energy savings and architectural appeal have to be part of that effort.

Kevin Clayton said that he was happy to see Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac officials at the Congress and Expo forum this year.

Clayton's CEO said they have to "chip away" at the financing difference, because there is "erosion" in the value proposition due to the differences in lending.

But what Clayton will prioritize this year are exteriors, he said. Clayton spoke about shipping dormers or other items on a separate carrier, and he said that it will be a game changer for the industry.

He felt that interiors of manufactured homes were a full 10 years ahead of exteriors, which clearly have to catch up to grow market share.

"Don't leave those who brought you to the dance..."

Clayton stressed that there is no desire to leave the entry level side of the business, nor should there be any wish to leave those "who brought us to the dance."

He explained that the U.S. Department of Transportation and HUD need to embrace "how wonderful our processes are," and they needed to be part of the solution that manufactured housing can uniquely bring to the housing market.

Destroying the Trailer Image

Westphal said, "Now that the interior is nailed, we need to destroy that trailer image," created by outdated exteriors.

The look of the homes in communities must be pleasing to the eye, the veteran MH development designer stressed.

Value Engineering

Champion's Anderson said that "value engineering" allowed for steeper roof lines, more porches and other items that could bring additional curb appeal without a lot more cost.

Ernst turned to Cavco's CEO, and pointed out their use of Santa Fe-style homes as but one example of manufactured housing that could have fresh looks.

Stegmayer said that HUD's new onsite completion rule was "too onerous," "too expensive," and "too laborious" to be useful.

He said that housing is very much a regional business, and explained that they have architects and designers on staff for interiors and exteriors, including those with a Southwestern or Santa Fe regional flare.

Stegmayer went on to explain that multifamily and multi-story projects being done by their firm were being completed on site. He said there was a need to challenge the perceptions of developers who still think they can do it cheaper on site, than by using the efficiency found in factory building.

"Even though we can save time and money, there is a thing called ego," he said. An example of a SoCal project with higher roof pitches and bolder exterior elevations was discussed.

No Question of Capabilities

Gary McDaniel said there is no question about the capabilities. He also felt the industry must not abandon those who need affordable housing that brought us to the dance.

He concurred with Kevin Clayton, that parity in the capital markets would open more doors for manufactured housing's competitiveness.

McDaniel also noted that the rental option was important to the industry too, because not everyone wants to buy -- at least not right away.

More Interest from Developers

Don Westphal noted that 8 years ago, when housing crashed, there was no interest in learning how to develop with manufactured housing. Last year, 30 attended a seminar on that topic.

This year, that number had doubled.

By identifying what the roadblocks are, and navigating those, new levels of sales could be achieved by the industry.

Exteriors aren't Everything

McDaniel said that many of their buyers were not that concerned with the exteriors. Having a clean, affordable place to live that was comfortable -- that was the key to their success. With their focus on families, as opposed to the senior market, Yes! Communities was creating a place where residents were happy to raise their families.

Be it renting or buying, "Once they experience our home, the misconceptions go away," McDaniel said.

Renting homes did create new wrinkles, such as how to service that "fleet of homes" in the corporate rental pool.

But he said their customers have "really not changed that much from the 80s, 90s, to 2000s, to now," adding that the demand for affordable housing was incredible. They were expanding and building to meet that demand.

Clayton's Move into the Site Building Market

Kevin Clayton explained that they bought builder/developers near Nashville and Atlanta more to learn how to do successful developments, rather than to integrate manufactured housing into

those businesses.

Noting that housing from $150,000 to $225,000 "sells fast," he felt that if the old MH terminology was bypassed, our industry's product was poised for growth.

Clayton floated the idea of working with HUD to develop a new class of manufactured housing that would be built to the HUD Code, but would have 5/12 roof pitches, integrated porches and

not use vinyl skirting, with tweaks in foundation and set-up – all of which would then be given a new name for that style of home.

That new class of homes could then have an ad campaign to promote it for zoning and financing acceptance. He said it would be important to show it off as superior, and a way to separate

it from the old mobile home terminology and image.

The session was brought to a conclusion by stating the value proposition for association membership, but also by stressing why the GSEs needed to be on board with chattel lending for manufactured housing.

When 21st, Vanderbilt and other industry lenders could make manufactured home lending work, that clearly implied that the GSEs could do so, too. ##

By L. A. “Tony” Kovach.

Connect on LinkedIn.

Free Twice Weekly emailed news, tips updates (Newsletters look like this) sign up free in seconds at MHProNews.com/Subscribe 

Office 863-213-4090. Publisher of MHLivingNews.com, MHProNews.com and expert services via MHC-MD.com and LATonyKovach.com.

RirchardCordrayManufacturedHomeLoanRegulations-SenJoeDonnellyIndustryInFocusMHProNews-com_001

Still from video below.

I actually don't think there was ever much high cost lending in the manufactured housing market.”

-- Richard Cordray, director, Consumer Financial Protection Bureau

Mark Carter is a pastor of an independent church in the Ohio River Valley of Western Kentucky and a part-time school bus driver.

Susan Gaines is a second generation manufactured home retailer who has sold Carter two homes over the years, helping him secure financing for each of them.

But during an interview, Mark was stunned to learn that he'll be on his own the next time around, thanks to new federal regulations that prevent Susan or other retail sales professionals from offering the guidance she once gave all of her clients -- many of them, first-time home buyers.

It is the same kind of assistance in finding suitable financing that real estate agents can still routinely provide to buyers of conventional site-built homes.

"I feel like part of my job is to educate the public. And they've kind of eliminated the area where I could sit down with the customer and explain debt-to-income ratio … where they have to be in order to buy a home," says Gaines, speaking about the impact of CFPB regulations on the professional services she's long provided her customers.

The Dodd-Frank rules, implemented in 2014 by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB), have already impacted thousands of consumers who want nothing more than to finance the purchase of a quality, affordable home.

Yet few buyers realize these CFPB rules exist, much less that they represent good intentions that have gone terribly awry in the name of consumer protection.

Sen. Joe Donnelly (D-Indiana) is aware not only of the harm Dodd-Frank has inflicted on individual buyers and sellers of manufactured homes, but the collateral damage inflicted on MH production, employment, community banks, national lenders and retailers. Federal rules also harm millions who have the lowest cost manufactured homes, because CFPB regulations have driven lenders out of the low-balance loan market.

Donnelly recently confronted Richard Cordray, head of the CFPB, about the impact of the Dodd-Frank rules, which Cordray's agency put into place.

"It's not fair … to think that the rest of the country is all Washington, D.C. townhouses that may sell for a million dollars," Donnelly said. Ordinary families also have a right to have a place to call home, he added.

Cordray bristled at that statement. "And, by the way, want to have a place to call home and not be gouged," he replied, despite having acknowledged just moments before that there "was not ever much high-cost lending in the manufactured housing market."

Donnelly held his ground. "In almost every case, I don't think my local community banker is out to gouge anybody," he said.

And so begins our snapshot of the wide-ranging impact of regulations that Barney Frank once stated in writing were never meant to apply to manufactured housing.

In this video, you'll hear from:

* Mark Carter, Pastor and manufactured home owner

"Who would have more expertise than someone who sells these homes every day?"

* Susan Gaines, a second-generation retailer

"I can't even figure out a payment for them to know where they're going to be in 20 years, 15 years, 30 years. They're doing a disservice to my customer."

* Don Glisson, Jr., an independent MH lender whose firm originates some $400 million a year in MH loans, that provide some 10,000 buyers a year with quality, affordable homes.

"If (a retailer's) not being compensated for the finance side, which he's not, why would he not help the customer find the best deal?"

* Doug Bell, senior VP of a local bank whose costs have increased and services have been slowed by the CFPB's rules.

"We've had to add additional compliance, additional training, additional staffing."

The solution a number of Republicans are calling for is to end the CFPB altogether.

A growing coalition of Democratic and Republican lawmakers wants to modify Dodd-Frank in ways that will end the harm caused by the current state of the CFPB's regulations.

Indeed, the House acted in the spring of 2015 by passing HR 650, and the bi-partisan Senate support for S 682 continues. But why should the people harmed by CFPB regulations have to wait?

Perhaps the most troubling part of this issue is that Cordray, himself, has the power to offer relief to the consumers who are paying the price of this misguided application of the legislation, which blocks their path to home ownership, or harms the resale and values of the lowest cost manufactured homes.

The CFPB's director has the legal authority under Dodd-Frank to make the needed changes. There is no need to wait for federal law to be changed by Congress. 

Millions are being harmed, as Senator Donnelly points out.

With a growing affordable housing crisis in the U.S., and thousands of good, American jobs being thwarted by these regulations, what possible reason can Richard Cordray give to defend the harm he and his bureau's regulations are causing Americans?

That is a question Cordray never attempts to answer in his most recent appearance before a Senate committee. Nor did he or the CFPB respond to our requests for comments on the issue. Its one that consumers and advocates for quality affordable housing should be asking their elected and appointed officials themselves.

In a previous video report with Senator Bob Corker (R-TN), Cordray clearly indicated he understands the business math that causes low-balance home loans to have a somewhat higher interest rate, and he clearly stated that the Dodd-Frank law allowed for that practice as justified. See that video, linked here.

While Washington DC politics takes its slow course on enacting the Preserving Access to Manufactured Housing Act, HR 650/S 682, millions of manufactured home owners – and thousands of more would-be buyers monthly – are impacted by rules that Cordray himself said can be modified. How long must those who are being impacted wait? ##

By L. A. "Tony" Kovach, 863-213-4090.  

Connect on LinkedIn - 

https://www.linkedin.com/in/latonykovach

Free Twice Weekly emailed news, tips updates (Newsletters look like this) sign up free in seconds at MHProNews.com/Subscribe  

by L. A. 'Tony' Kovach

tony-kovach-2-75In an exclusive video interview that could help reframe the discussions about MH Lending in Washington, DC - as well as with consumer advocacy groups nationally – Triad Financial Services Chairman and CEO, Don Glisson Jr. shared with MHProNews the following exclusive video interview.

Don Glisson Jr. addresses the following hot-button topics:

  • The interest rates charged on MH Loans - and the often overlooked facts which explain why they are fair and competitive.

  • Why CFPB and other federal rules are negatively impacting consumers and thus the retailers, communities and other MH operations that serve them.

  • Why the CFPB's LO Comp rule is harming consumers and needs to be changed.

  • Why there is some rate spread between MH loans and conventional housing mortgages, among other topics of wide interest.

This video report brings to light in clear terms facts useful with and for:

> consumer groups, such as NMHOA, CFED or others,

> the media, in their reporting or commentary on the MH Personal Property (aka home only, chattel) Lending issue - (as you watch this, think how different the PBS NewsHour or Seattle Times reports might be in the light of these facts),

> elected officials and their staffs, as they consider S 682/HR 650 Passage (Preserving Access to Manufactured Housing Act),

> CFPB in revising their LO Comp Rule,

> GSEs, FHFA, 

> other lending regulators, quality affordable housing policy advocates or MH focused interested parties...

can all grasp. The result could be greater reality-based consensus in finding the solutions.

As CNBC's Diana Olick stated, people don't buy housing price or rates per se, instead they buy based upon monthly payments.  The two charts below reflect the fact that 

FannieMae2011PaymentComparisonChartForManufacturedHousingOtherHouses-PostedManufacturedHomeLivingNews-com-

Manufactured Home loans may have a higher rate, for reasons that Don Glisson Jr. explains,

but they still have the lowest monthly payment of any form of permanent housing.

2014gao-report-comparing-manufactured-housing-vs-apartments-posted-manufacturedhomelivingnews-com-575x311

A recent MHLivingNews report and video on MHLending are linked here.

For the full context of these finance-focused interviews, we're providing the two prior episodes of this video, below.

Part 2 of this in depth video interview with Don Glisson Jr on MH lending topics for industry professionals, is below.

Part 1 of this Inside MH video interview with Triad Financial Service's Chairman and CEO, from a lender that closed some $400 million dollars in business in 2015.

Programming Note: Please watch for the fourth and final installment in this Inside MH video on manufactured home lending with Don Glisson Jr. in the weeks ahead. ##


latonykovach-louisiville2015-mhpronews-business-building-seminars-1L. A. "Tony" Kovach

Connect - https://www.linkedin.com/in/latonykovach

Free Twice Weekly emailed news, tips updates (Newsletters look like this) sign up free in seconds at MHProNews.com/Subscribe 

Office 863-213-4090.

MHC-MD.com and LATonyKovach.com 



It is common for media to do a look back at the year that was. In the publicly traded markets, MHProNews, decided to apply that concept to the stocks connected with Manufactured Housing.

Each stock below is one that tracked by the ever-popular Daily Business News and its market report.

In alphabetical order, we showed the MH-related stocks we cover daily, with the first quoted number reflecting that stock's value on Jan. 1. 2015. The second quoted number represents that stock's value on Dec. 31, 2015.

StockMarket-ImagecreditCNNMonePpostedMHProNewsCom

Keep in mind that the stock markets overall reported their worst year in 2015, since 2008, per CNN Money and other sources. We note if that stock is down or up for the year in parenthesis.

Affiliated Managers Group, Inc. (NYSE: AMG) $210.43 - $159.76 (down).

Berkshire Hathaway Inc. (NYSE:BRK.A) $223,600.00 – $197,800.00 (down).

Carlyle Group(NASDAQ:CG) $28.18 – $15.62 (down).

Cavco Industries, Inc. (NASDAQ:CVCO) $77.75 – $83.31 (up).

Deer Valley Corporation (OTCMKTS:DVLY) $0.600 — $0.69 (up).

Drew Industries, Inc. (NYSE:DW) $49.97 – $60.89 (up).

Equity LifeStyle Properties, Inc. (NYSE:ELS) $52.36 – $66.67 (up).

Killam Properties Inc. (TSE:KMP) $10.31–$10.51 9 (up).

Liberty Homes, Inc. (OTCMKTS:LIBHA) $0.0100 – $0.02 (up).

Louisiana-Pacific Corporation (NYSE:LPX) $16.54–$18.01 (up).

Nobility Homes Inc. (OTCMKTS:NOBH) $10.00 – $12.01 (up).

Patrick Industries, Inc. (NASDAQ:PATK) $43.79–$43.50 (down).

Skyline Corporation (NYSEMKT:SKY) $3.82 – $3.56 (down).

Sun Communities Inc. (NYSE:SUI) $61.51–$68.53 (up).

Third Avenue Value Instl (OTCMKTS:TAVFX) $56.68 – $48.05 (down).

UMH Properties, Inc. (NYSE:UMH) $9.60–$10.12 (up).

Universal Forest Products, Inc. (NASDAQ:UFPI) $52.37 – $68.37 (up).

The most notable changes are the increases in value of Drew, Equity LifeStyle Properties, and Universal Forest Products.

Drop in value notables include Affiliated Managers Group, Berkshire Hathaway, Carlyle Group, and Third Avenue Value Instl. 

Three of the U.S. based MHC REITs ELS, SUN and UMH – were up.

We also track the Yahoo! Finance Manufactured Housing Composite Value (MHCV), which stood at Manufactured Housing Composite Value (MHCV): 584.5 on January 2, 2015, and fell on Thursday, December 31st, 2015 by -3.13 percent to end the year at $1130.

Given the overall drop of the broader markets, it seems that manufactured housing is fairing well. ##

(Image credit: CNNMoney)

matthew-silver-70-70by Matthew Silver

"What is wrong," said the brilliant G.K. Chesterton, "is that we don't ask what is right." Let's apply this principle to Doug Ryan, the Corporation for Enterprise Development (CFED) and the utter need for the quality affordable living millions could find in today's modern manufactured housing.

DougRyan-credit-cltnetwork-posted-IndustryInFocus-ManufacturedHomeLendingRegulations-MHProNews-com 

Doug Ryan, CFED point man on MH,

photo credit – CLTNetwork.

What's wrong is that millions of Americans are being denied their fair piece of the dream of home ownership.  They are being denied at times due to NIMBYites. We will define them as those who say they want affordable housing for people, only "Not In My Back Yard" (NIMBY).

whats-wrong-is-that-we-dont-ask-whats-right-g-k-chesterton-posted-inspiration-blog-mhpronews-com-

Others are being denied their piece of the American Dream due to what some say are the good intentions gone awry of regulators, such as the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB). As Marty Lavin wisely points out in the video posted below, regulations alone are causing otherwise able people from owning a home of their own.  That's clearly wrong.

The CFPB's Richard Corday said to Senator Bob Corker, that it was not optimal for artificial regulatory thresholds to keep people in rental housing.JessMaxcyPresidentCMHI-sourceHillBlog-postedMastheadMHProNews-com--214x430  Director Cordray's admission is right, but what's wrong is that he's not changed polices the Dodd-Frank Act permits him to do to fix it with the stroke of a pen.

Doug Ryan and CFED are right to extol the virtues of manufactured homes.  I'd say that it's tactically wrong to suggest or stress that MH has value only for those who are the lower income or working class; we've done numerous video interviews with successful professionals who love manufactured home living.   The NIMBYites might be more persuaded by those successful folks who love their manufactured homes, than they are about the needs of the less financially able they claim to care about, but currently deny in practice.

Doug Ryan et al are wrong on the finance issues about MH too.  I'll refer again to finance expert Marty Lavin in the video interview on this page.

Doug Ryan, et al are right to promote that the FHFA via the GSEs implement the Duty to Serve (DTS) "home only" lending to manufactured homes.  But they are wrong to suggest a Hobson's Choice of supporting Duty to Serve only if MH lenders and businesses give up on passage of The Preserving Access to Manufactured Housing Act (HR 650), which passed the House by a wide margin with bi-partisan support; and the companion S 682, which looks like it may be part of an Omnibus appropriations bill in the Senate. 

hobson-choice-cerditWikipedia

What's right is that DTS has its own value to MH, but so does HR 650/S 682. The bill does nothing more than what Congressman Barney Frank and those who voted for the Dodd-Frank Act gave the CFPB authority to do on its own.  See the Frank letter, which was read into the congressional record, can be found on the page linked here and was first published on MHProNews.com.

What's wrong is that Ryan and some so-called non-profit consumer groups have mischaracterized the realities and goals of HR 650/S682 and manufactured home lending. What's right is that there ought to be a clear recognition that what Jan Hollingsworth's pro-consumer report revealed is the true reality of the impact of CFPB’s regulations.

What's wrong is that we're told by the federal government that the recently released HMDA data proves MH lending has been restricted by 5%, while driving up costs unnecessarily for MH lenders in a fashion that U.S. Bank and others cited as factors that drove them out of the MH loan space.  What's right is attorney and financing expert Lavin's point that bureaucrats are taking away the path previously used by millions to achieve home ownership.

LizRomanchek-ManufacturedHomeOwner-TheHillBlogcredit-postedMastheadMHProNews-com-What's right is that Ryan, CFED and all people of good will should stand together to get Richard Cordray to relent on his harmful regulations, and/or support the Senate passage of S 682, so that The Preserving Access to Manufactured Housing Act becomes law.  The next right thing to do is to educate those NIMBYites that they’re part of the problem when they block access to quality affordable MH at the local level.

What's wrong is that enough people don't ask - and then do - what's right.

We outlined what’s wrong and cross referenced in depth on The Hill's Congress Blog, linked here,  what's wrong and what's right on these MH personal property lending issues. Doug Ryan has not tried to refute a single word of that analysis online anywhere we’ve seen.  Nor did Doug Ryan deny a single word in Jan Hollingsworth's original in depth report on this MH lending topic. On those two failures to deny or refute, Ryan's right.

CongressBlog-creditTheHill-OpEd-LATonyKovach-postedMastheadBlog-MHProNews--575x322

What's right is that Doug Ryan et al shift gears and start to do what's consistent with the rest of their stated values about MH, by providing quality affordable living potentially for millions now stuck in the Renters' Nation.  MH is unsubsidized, so it's the right and smart policy to get the regulations out of the way that are keeping the MH Industry from serving more people, as Marty Lavin explains and underscores.

When Ryan and his peers get on board with fixing what's wrong with the current CFPB regulations and NIMBY, no one will applaud louder than this scribe, because that would be what's right. ##

LATonyKovach-Louisville-2015-mhpronews-com-275x156_2By L. A. 'Tony' Kovach.

Beyond confusion on finance related issues, there are many myths and misunderstandings about modern manufactured housing.  Among these are:

> that MH is somehow more vulnerable to wind storms (that’s not true, as the first video below features a preview that will blow that false impression away).

> That manufactured home’s lower prices are achieved by cutting corners on the quality of materials.  That’s false.  Its economies of scale, less waste, time and labor savings plus strict federal oversight that combine to yield improved quality, with savings that the U.S. Census Bureau states make contemporary manufactured homes about ½ the cost of a similar sized conventional, on-site built house.  The facts are demonstrated in the video interview with an expert that’s linked here.  This consumer-based report, demonstrates that the satisfaction level of today’s MH buyers is very high.

> That manufactured homes are less energy savings than conventional on-site built housing. That's false.  Because manufactured homes (MH) are built on jigs in a controlled environment, they are tighter and thus more energy saving size-for-size with identical insulation levels and features - apples-to-apples – in conventional single family housing.  The article linked here on that topic is helpful.

> The National Fire Prevention Association (NFPA) study should extinguish the now outdated myth that manufactured homes are more fire-prone than site built homes. Modern MH is safer vs. fire than conventional homes today.  Older pre-HUD Code "mobile homes" - of which no more mobile homes have been built since June 15, 1976 - were more vulnerable to the flames, but today's MH are safer by design.  See the report and key highlights, linked here.

We could go step-by-step through a host of old myths replaced by contemporary MH realities. Dispelling errors is what MHLivingNews.com has focused on for some years, while MHProNews challenged errors in media reports like The Daily Yonder story on financing or OZY Media's low blow, agenda laced 'reporting' on MH.   

But our focus today is on manufactured home chattel financing.  We’ll take an in depth look at the impact of CFPB regulations on:

  • consumers seeking to buy,
  • and MH home owners that may want to sell. 

That and more are covered in the video below, with a widely respected MH lending expert.

Growing Need for Affordable Housing & Critical Need for Manufactured Home Financing

The above facts are comparatively easy to outline.  By far the single most difficult issue for many to properly understand is MH lending. 

With the video below, we resume a planned, periodic series of video interviews with MH hopme owners, professionals and lending experts.  This Inside MH video report will feature award winning Marty Lavin, JD.

As you will see, Marty is passionate about consumer safeguards.  He is equally focused on making sure that the facts about MH personal property - aka chattel or ‘home only’ lending, vs. land home or mortgage loans – by the MH finance industry are accurately reflected and understood.

The video that follows is an in depth discussion. It’s intended for a more accurate understanding of the facts and issues about MH lending and related regulatory policies.  We anticipate that:

  • Congressional and Senate staffs,
  • public policy advocates,
  • regulators at the CFPB or other federal and state agencies,
  • industry professionals,
  • investors,
  • the mainstream media,
  • educators and non-profits

are among those who will find this video interview compelling, timely and relevant.

While a lot of ground is covered in under 25 minutes, this video - nor any other of this length - is going to be exhaustive.  For the serious researchers on these MH finance issues, additional insights on this topic are found in the articles linked after the four numbered bullets that follow.

We’ve studied these issues from four key perspectives.  Please note that the following 4 bullets are not necessarily in any order of importance:

  • 1. Impact of current CFPB regulations on MH Home Owners, notably those with homes priced under $20,000.
  • 2. The impact of current regulations on MH Home shoppers, not only those priced under $20,000, because all are impacted by the MLO rule discussed in the video.
  • 3. Impact of CFPB regulations on current MH businesses; lenders, sellers, communities, builders, suppliers – all are directly or indirectly impacted by these regulations.
  • 4. Policy advocates, public officials and the media.  There are widespread misunderstandings and outright demonstrable errors that are addressed in the video shown and in the articles that follow.

Additional Resources and References in understanding MH Lending and Related Regulatory issues

For those who seek a comprehensive understanding of this issue, the following articles are provided for additional depth on this issue; which is vital to supporting improved access to America’s most quality and affordable housing option.

thehill.com/blogs/congress-blog/economy-budget/248665-regulations-for-manufactured-home-loans – the article linked above has extensive cross links to additional sources that document the various statements.

http://manufacturedhomelivingnews.com/renters-nation-the-dark-side-of-dodd-frank-and-its-impact-on-affordable-housing/  The headline summarizes it well, and the narrative is compelling, provided by an award-winning journalist.

http://manufacturedhomelivingnews.com/dodd-frank-and-manufactured-home-financing-the-place-where-good-intentions-and-unintended-consequences-collide/  This was the first article by award-winning, “depth consumer affairs” journalist Jan Hollingsworth on the topic of MH lending. The facts, charts and a home buyer’s stunning odyssey presented by Hollingsworth broke new ground in media coverage, aiding a better understanding of MH lending.

http://manufacturedhomelivingnews.com/she-black-hes-white-theyre-in-different-parties-why-congressional-representatives-terri-sewell-and-andy-barr-support-preserving-access-to-manufactured-housing/  MH lending reforms has bi-partisan support, as the article demonstrates.

http://manufacturedhomelivingnews.com/cfed-and-cfpb-confused-conflicted-friends-of-manufactured-home-owners-and-prospective-buyers/   Part of the resistance to MH lending comes from a source that has a clear conflict of interest on this issue.

http://manufacturedhomelivingnews.com/congressman-stephen-fincher-is-demanding-fairness-for-rural-americans-in-manufactured-homes-the-hill-oped/ Congressman Fincher’s reason for sponsoring HR 650, the House bill that has already passed; pending the upcoming vote on S 682, the companion bill to HR 650 that is pending a vote in the U.S. Senate.

http://manufacturedhomelivingnews.com/sam-landy-umh-ceo-on-dodd-frank-and-the-preserving-access-to-manufactured-housing-act-s-682hr-650/ - This video interview and the related article confirms many of the assertions that finance expert and attorney Marty Lavin has made in the video above.

http://manufacturedhomelivingnews.com/impact-of-cfpb-loan-regulations-on-the-lowest-cost-manufactured-and-mobile-home-owners/ - this is the first video interview with an MH home owner, who wants to see her home’s values protected from the harmful impact of current CFPB regulations.##

latonyKovach-Louisville-2015-mhpronews-com-275x156-11By L. A. “Tony” Kovach.

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Closed | 33 Sites | Woodmont Trailer Par…

Closed | 33 Sites | Woodmont Trailer Park | Farmington Hills, Michigan

Woodmont Trailer Park - Farmington Hills, MI MHRE closed on  Woodmont Trailer Park in Farmington Hills, MI to an undisclosed buyer for  a undisclosed price. Woodmont Trailer Park is a 2-star community, built in 1952 with 32 sites and 1 apartment.  Included in the sale were 21 homes of which 13 were leased and 8 vacant.  MHRE represented the buyer.   Christopher Nortley, Managing Partner with MHRE commented “Woodmont was a mis-managed property that needed an infusion of capital and a new vision. With a Class A location, only 4 blocks from Beumont Hospital, which currently is in the process of a $160,000,000 expansion, makes the community ideal to be converted to a senior community.”   MHRE Inc. specializes in the sale of family and age-restricted manufactured home and RV communities across the country.  Please contact us...

the MHMSM Team 27 Feb 2017 Corporate Press Releases

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