by John Walters
It is conference season for those of us in the manufactured housing industry. Attendance and participation has demonstrated an overall growing economy and the increased activity that comes with it. However, there still is an overhang of the next wave of regulations. Their potential impact looms on the horizon. Much time was and is still being spent in conversations that range from education to speculation to trepidation. What seems to be lacking most are discussions that lead to inspiration.
On the front line of these regulations and changes, lenders find challenges in how to respond.
Market forces often push in a direction to keep “business as usual,” despite potential consequences with regulators. Other regulatory concerns, whether real or perceived, may prompt a move too far the other way. Some may even consider exiting from the business altogether. None of those responses speaks to sustainability as a lender or other manufactured housing stakeholders.
Fortunately, these are not the only options from which to choose.
We can chose to accept and embrace regulation and change to enhance the experience of our business partners and consumers, or as we refer to them in the credit union world, members.
For example, here at CU Factory Built Lending (CUFBL), we have accepted changes and leveraged them to improve the quality of interactions with our business partners and members. For our retailer business partners, we offer regionally assigned, well trained Business Development Executives who are able to assist them on their business needs and help them navigate the regulatory climate we live in.
Used in conjunction with our dedicated MLO’s, we have created a process that not only meets regulatory guidelines but improves upon communication with both the retailer and the member. It offers a more efficient and streamlined transaction for all involved.
We are also developing and launching tools and platforms exclusively for our loan brokers who serve manufactured housing customers. There they will find “inspiration” in the form of additional tools and resources regarding marketing, rates, programs, compliance and a myriad of topics that will assist them in many aspects of their business.
These are just two examples of improvements born out of the changes required in the regulatory environment we operate under today.
Regulation and change, especially that appear to be forced upon us, may lead to anxiety or frustration. It also can be the spark to re-evaluate our respective roles in serving our customers.
How do we bring value to each other as industry partners? Perhaps most importantly, how do we best serve the consumer (member)? That re-examination of our business practices, our value to our customer and our core values themselves is where the “good” can spring from regulation and change. ##
John Walters is the West Region Sales and Marketing Manager for CU Factory Built Lending (CUFBL). CUFBL has won numerous awards for their manufactured housing loan programs. CUFBL is a division of San Antonio Credit Union (SACU).