Archive

Archive for the ‘Small Business’ Category

NFIB President Touts Optimism, Says Capital Spending, Expansion, and Sales Expectations Drive Performance – Plus Manufactured Housing Stock Updates

July 1st, 2019 Comments off

CNNmone7.1.2019ManufacturedHomeStocksMarketsReportsMHProNewsIt is easy – and sometimes wise – to follow the same reports that others in business media are reporting.  CNBC, Fox Business, CNN and others today are among those reporting on the ‘pause’ in the U.S.-China trade war, the surge in the markets, and the wisdom of allowing U.S. firms to sell to China’s Huawei. Each of those are relevant.  They are all among the market movers cited in our left-right headline summary that follows. But tonight’s focus report is on small business and the return of optimism reported by the National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB). Catching up on the view from the giant NFIB association will be our featured report this evening.

 

If you’re new, already hooked on our new spotlight feature – or are ready to get the MH professional fever – our headline report is found further below, after the newsmaker bullets and major indexes closing tickers.

 

The evolving Daily Business News market report sets the manufactured home industry’s stocks in the broader context of the overall markets.  Headlines – at home and abroad – often move the markets.  So, this is an example of “News through the lens of manufactured homes, and factory-built housing.” ©

Part of this unique evening feature provides headlines – from both sides of the left-right media divide – which saves busy readers time, while underscoring topics that may be moving investors, which in turn move the markets.

Readers say this is also a useful quick-review tool that saves researchers time in getting a handle of the manufactured housing industry, through the lens of publicly-traded stocks connected with the manufactured home industry.

This is an exclusive evening or nightly example of MH “Industry News, Tips and Views, Pros Can Use.” © It is fascinating to see just how similar, and different, these two lists of headlines can be.

Want to know more about the left-right media divide from third party research?  ICYMI – for those not familiar with the “Full Measure,” ‘left-center-right’ media chart, please click here.

 

The timing on the new Trump Administration executive order (EOs) was interesting. Consumer confidence has wavered. Conventional housing sales have dipped. That said, these types of EOs don’t just pop out of thin air. They are developed over time. There are inputs from a variety of potential federal, state, private industry stakeholders. On a down day for the markets, and mixed results on manufactured housing track stocks, the official White House statement and a video interview with HUD Secretary Carson are our focus for this evening.

CNN Business

  • Monopolies are destroying the American Dream
  • Antitrust is a 2020 issue. That’s good because our democracy is at stake, one expert argues
  • S&P 500 sets new closing record
  • ANALYSIS The fragile US-China truce won’t heal wounds already made by tariffs
  • Investors are frantically searching for yield in a low-rate world
  • Gas taxes are rising because Americans are driving more fuel-efficient cars
  • Iran oil minister: ‘OPEC might die’
  • Jeff and MacKenzie Bezos’ $38 billion divorce settlement is expected soon
  • New York will start enforcing its styrofoam ban today
  • OPINION America is failing its workers
  • Pepsi is ditching plastic bottles for cans, even for water
  • Shopping Content by CNN Underscored
  • Here’s how to preorder the new Xbox Elite 2 Wireless Controller
  • Malls are catering to a new type of customer: gamers
  • Kevin Durant signing with the Nets is terrible news for Madison Square Garden shareholders
  • Four day work weeks sound too good to be true. These companies make it work
  • Uber will now show you where to rent bikes and scooters
  • Harley-Davidson making small motorcycles in China
  • Your first ride on an e-scooter will be the most dangerous
  • Uber and Lyft battle LA over future of transportation
  • Usain Bolt has his own e-scooter company
  • HARNESSING THE POWER OF THE SUN
  • These women are bringing electricity to millions in India
  • Yes, this car is solar-powered. But it still has a plug
  • Indian farmers are using the sun to help water their crops
  • Harnessing India’s sunny days for power
  • Cookie maker buys enough solar energy to make 10 billion Oreos a year

Fox Business

  • S&P 500 stock index begins July by setting a record high
  • Trump tells New York to rethink tax laws after New Jersey kills millionaire’s tax
  • Costco sells $7B in clothing a year, surpassing some apparel retailers: report
  • NBA free agency spending tops $3 billion in 24 hours
  • Bobby Bonilla’s Mets contract: Why ex-MLB star gets $1.19M annually until he’s 72 years old
  • Trump’s ‘brilliant stroke’ with China’s Xi a win for US, Michael Pillsbury says
  • These are the best and worst run cities in the US, report finds
  • US economy breaks record with post-recession expansion
  • California gun owners face new background checks for ammo purchases
  • What is Scooter Braun’s net worth?
  • Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos to pay out $38B to MacKenzie as divorce settlement is finalized
  • Wimbledon prize money breakdown: Here’s how much the winners will get
  • Warren Buffett to donate $3.6B in Berkshire Hathaway shares to these five foundations
  • What is Kamala Harris’ net worth?
  • OPEC extends oil production cut by 9 months
  • Former McDonald’s USA CEO: Burger King hogging all the Impossible Burgers
  • USMCA will unleash American innovation: Dems must not stand in the way
  • Democrats have been ‘hijacked by unelectable socialists’: Varney
  • Trump-Xi trade talks at G20: America’s biggest weakness is no big secret
  • Impact of Hong Kong protests on US-China trade talks
  • This is the best economy for small business in 50 years: NFIB CEO
  • Facebook providing stability to cryptocurrency?
  • Semiconductor shares surge after Trump lifts Huawei ban
  • Investors appeared to welcome Trump’s move, but it drew scorn from lawmakers in both parties.
  • Halfway through 2019, tech leads Wall Street

 

Today’s markets and stocks snapshot, at the closing bell…

9MarketIndicatorsYahooFinance7.1.2019DailyBusinessNeawsManufacturedHousingIndustryStocksMarketsReportsDataMHProNews

 

Today’s MH Market Spotlight Report –

ManufacturedHousingIndustryConnectedStocksYahoo712019DailyBusinessNewsMHproNews

Still from first video, below.

 

In 2018, Small Biz Trends ranked the NFIB as follows.

 

The Big List of Small Business Associations

·        U.S. Small Business Administration. …

·        SCORE. …

·        U.S. Chamber of Commerce. …

·        NFIB. …

·        International Council for Small Business. …

·        Entrepreneurs’ Organization. …

·        National Business Association. …

·        NSBA.

 

Earlier today, the NFIB’s president and CEO Juanita Duggan on the current economic environment for small business in America said that this is the best economy for small business in 50 years.

Frankly, that’s not the sober view of small business in manufactured housing across America, or what we affectionately refer to on MHProNews at times as “MHVille.”  Small businesses in our industry run the gamut from those doing well to those struggling. But what is beyond doubt is that there were thousands of more small businesses in our industry 20 years ago. While some new locations are opening, they are arguably outpaced by those who close or have sold out to consolidators.

That said, let’s turn to what NFIB reports, to get one more perspective on how MHVille’s small businesses stack up with that of other parts of the economy.

 

 

Here’s the NFIB optimism snapshot from June.

WASHINGTON, D.C. (June 11, 2019) — Small business optimism eclipsed pre-shutdown levels, increasing 1.5 points to 105.0 in May. Six components in the Small Business Optimism Index improved, three were unchanged, and one dipped. Capital spending plans increased along with actual outlays. Small business owners’ expectations for sales, business conditions, and expansion all rose, as the previously reported inventory imbalance was resolved. Earnings, job creation, and compensation remained very strong.

“Optimism among small business owners has surged back to historically high levels, thanks to strong hiring, investment, and sales,” said NFIB President and CEO Juanita D. Duggan. “The small business half of the economy is leading the way, taking advantage of lower taxes and fewer regulations, and reinvesting in their businesses, their employees, and the economy as a whole.”

Business owners reporting capital outlays increased six points to 64 percent, the highest reading since February 2018. Thirty percent plan capital outlays in the next few months, up three points and historically high. Plans to invest were most frequent in transportation (45 percent), manufacturing (39 percent), professional services (39 percent), and construction (31 percent).

“Small business owners are demonstrating a continued confidence in the strength of the economy and are betting capital spending dollars on it,” said NFIB Chief Economist William Dunkelberg. “This solid investment performance is supporting ongoing improvements in productivity and real wages.”

A net nine percent of all owners (seasonally adjusted) reported higher nominal sales in the past three months, unchanged from April and historically strong. The net percent of owners expecting higher real sales volumes rose three points to a net 23 percent of owners. A net 16 percent expect better business conditions, up three points, and 30 percent say now is a good time to expand, a five-point increase. The frequency of reports of positive profit trends improved two points to a net negative one percent, a very solid gain.

The net percent of owners reporting inventory increases was unchanged at a net two percent (seasonally adjusted), consistent with the significant build up in the first quarter that added nearly one point to GDP growth. The net percentage of owners viewing current inventory stocks as “too low” was unchanged at a net negative four percent. The net percentage of owners planning to expand inventory holdings was unchanged at a net two percent, indicating the excessive inventory build in Q1 has been substantially resolved overall, helped by strong sales gains.

Inflation pressures remained subdued, even though reports of compensation gains remained at historically high levels. The government reported a substantial improvement in productivity and an associated decline in unit labor costs which offsets the need to increase prices to cover rising labor costs. The net percentage of owners raising average selling prices fell three points to a net 10 percent, seasonally adjusted. A net 20 percent plan price hikes, seasonally adjusted (down one point).

As reported in the May NFIB Jobs Report, small business owners added a net addition of 0.32 workers per firm, with 25 percent citing the difficulty of finding qualified workers as their Single Most Important Business Problem, matching the record high. Sixty-two percent of owners reported hiring or trying to hire employees, up five points from last month, but 54 percent reported few or no qualified applicants for the positions they were trying to fill (up five points).

About the Small Business Economic Trends

The NFIB Research Center has collected Small Business Economic Trends data with quarterly surveys since the 4th quarter of 1973 and monthly surveys since 1986. Survey respondents are drawn from a random sample of NFIB’s membership. The report is released on the second Tuesday of each month. This survey was conducted in May 2019.

##

Compare and contrast with NFIB said in the first video from this morning to another one from 4 years ago.

 

Part of the challenge in the U.S. today is a lack of a sense of objective history. There is no doubt that the economy is doing much better than 2 or 4 years ago.

There is also no doubt for those who look at the data that manufactured housing is underperforming.  For more on that, see the related reports, below.

 

MobileHomeEraManufacturedHomeEraMHIA2000EraShipmentProductionDailyBusinessNewsMHproNews2019-06-29_1051

There are several factors that should be understood to explain the rises and falls in the sales, production, and shipments of new factory-built homes during the varied mobile home and manufactured home eras. One should not be overly simplistic. That said, the historic trend is far higher than it has been since Berkshire Hathaway acquired Clayton Homes and their affiliated lenders in 2003. Political and other factors enter into the mix as well.

 

Related Reports:

Addressing Manufactured Housing Insanity, Unusual Equity LifeStyle Properties (ELS) Tip

 

Yahoo Finance Closing Ticker for MHProNews…

NOTE: The chart below includes the Canadian stock, ECN, which purchased Triad Financial Services.

NOTE: Drew changed its name and trading symbol at the end of 2016 to Lippert (LCII).

ManufacturedHousingIndustryConnectedStocksYahoo712019DailyBusinessNewsMHproNews

Updated:

Berkshire Hathaway is the parent company to Clayton Homes21st Mortgage, Vanderbilt Mortgage and other factory built housing industry suppliers.

LCI Industries, Patrick, UFPI, and LP all supply manufactured housing.

AMG, CG and TAVFX have investments in manufactured housing related businesses.

Your link to industry praise for our coverage, is found here.

For the examples of our kudos linked above…plus well over 1,000 positive, public comments, we say – “Thank You for your vote of confidence.”

SoheylaKovachDailyBusinessNewsMHProNewsMHLivingNewsWe Provide, You Decide.” © ## (News, analysis and commentary.)

(Image credits and information are as shown above, and when provided by third parties, are shared under fair use guidelines.)

Submitted by Soheyla Kovach to the Daily Business News for MHProNews.com.

“Incestuous” Lobbying? Kings of K Street, Revolving Door, Big Tech, Berkshire Hathaway – Follow the Money

June 25th, 2019 Comments off
IncenstuousLobbyingKingsofKStreetRevolvingDoorBerkshireHathawayFollowMoneyManufacturedHousingInstituteClaytonHomes21stMortgageMHProNews

Videos are further below. Collage by MHProNews.

When it comes to risk, here’s a reality check,” says FINRA. “All investments carry some degree of risk…within [a] country…political risk and currency risk are notable factors…”

 

Investopedia says that “political risk and macroeconomic risk…affect the performance of the overall market…” The centrist Financial Times points to the dangers to investments posed by political risks too.

Investors and professionals will be discerning 2020 candidates, as will the broader population. But in a nation of hundreds of millions, the lens candidates are viewed through are clearly going to differ.

The perspective of the millennial racked by student debt may well be more attracted to a candidate that promises to deal with that issue than those candidates who say there is no money to pay for such a debt-elimination program.  By contrast, the investor or small business owner may look dimly at those candidates who pledge higher taxes and more regulations.

That’s not to suggest that all businesses or investors are more centrist or right-leaning.  Some of the world’s and America’s richest men often bet on Democratic candidates, as the Daily Business News reported in the run-up to the 2018 midterms. The recent revelation that the Koch brothers could be supporting more Democrats in 2020 is just one indicator that the wealthy see politics and lobbying as a tool of business that they play which can pay hefty returns on investment.

The business of politics influences the creation of new regulations, the suspension of regs – and sometimes the failure to properly enforce existing laws – that can help or harm businesses. 

This Daily Business News item on MHProNews will look at lobbying and the revolving door in general, and then pivot in the third part of this article to more manufactured housing specific items in this 30,000-foot level report.

 

Mainstream, Investment Takes on K Street, Revolving Door, and Business

Gearing up for a big fight in Washington, four of the biggest tech companies are increasing their lobbying efforts,” says CBS News’ YouTube page to introduce their recent video report posted below. “Amazon, Apple, Facebook and Google are drawing out lobbyists with connections to the government as they face mounting scrutiny for alleged anti-trust violations. Kenneth Vogel, Washington reporter for The New York Times, joins CBSN to discuss.”’

 

 

As an editorial note about the video above, Vogel lays out several of the facts quite nicely. But if one detects a tone of ‘regulation over breakup’ in his analysis, MHProNews would observe that ‘regulating’ these companies is arguably not going to work as some think. The regulations in place haven’t worked, or the vexing scenarios Vogel describes wouldn’t exist. ICYMI, see what Professor Ed Lotterman says on the topic in the report linked from the text-image box below.

 

Real World Economics’ Professor Ed Lotterman says “Playing Monopoly is More Than Just Rolling the Dice”

 

Several of the Democratic 2020 candidates – Senators Cory Booker and Elizabeth Warren jump to mind – as well as a growing number on the political right have said that they think these tech giants need to be broken up under antitrust laws. Some of those same Senate Democrats have signed a letter asking the CFPB to dig into concerns over Berkshire Hathaway owned Clayton Homes and their associated manufactured home lenders.

In the CBS News video, Vogel touches upon several useful underlying themes to understand, including the ‘revolving door,’ which will be the focus of an upcoming manufactured housing industry specific exclusive report.

With regard to the New York Times’ Vogel’s narrative, antitrust law and how it is used is likely to be a campaign topic in the contests ahead. Clearly, Big Tech will be fighting it, as they have for years.  It is likely no coincidence that the Trump Administration’s antitrust division at the Department of Justice is reportedly opened investigations into some of the firms named above.

While they may approach these subjects from a different perspective, when both major parties spot a similar problem, that may be a sign that critical mass on an issue is approaching.

The video below is from the Obama Administration era, and thus is a bit dated.  But it makes clear just how large the lobbying business is, and why big business is willing to invest so much in it. The ROI on lobbying is stunning. This Motif investing video also has a touch of dry humor in the music an imagery.  The sources for the data are often shown in the bottom right corner of the screen.

 

 

As Motif summed it up, “If you follow the “Kings of K Street” motif, you know that companies that invest in influence have a leg up.” What that means is that smaller businesses and investors have to play smarter or they can get run over.

 

SoTheAssociationMHIIsNotThereFortheIndustryUnlesstheinterestsoftheBigBoysJointheIndustry'sMartyLavinMHIAwardWinnerQuoteMHProNews

MHProNews looks at the facts, considers the sources, follows the evidence, and the money. 

 

MHProNews recently spotlighted how the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) has spent its lobbying dollars via their political action committee, the MHI PAC.

 

Democrats? Republicans? Political Campaigns Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) PAC Supported

 

Berkshire Hathaway, as thousands of industry pros know, is the parent to Clayton Homes, 21st Mortgage Corp, Vanderbilt Mortgage and Finance (VMF), plus a number of other manufactured housing industry connected firms.

But Berkshire’s ties with the so-called tech giants are deep and growing, so that should not be overlooked in the snapshot outlined above.

Warren Buffett and Bill Gates of Microsoft fame have long-standing ties, including Buffett donating billions in Berkshire stock to the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, where Buffett is a trustee.

BillMelindaGatesFoundationWarrenBuffettTrusteeLeadershipPhotosDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

Collage from the Gates foundation website.

 

Berkshire now has roughly a billion dollars of Amazon stock.  Amazon founder Jeff Bezos and Buffett certainly collaborated on various levels years before that formal investment.

Berkshire also owns stock in giant Apple. According to CNBC on May 3, the value of Berkshire’s holdings in Apple in late 2018 was some $40 billion dollars.

So, when one is thinking about the tech giants, don’t forget that Berkshire and Buffett are not likely that far off. 

 

“Have…Giants…Stifled Competition,” Antitrust Battle Lines in D.C., plus Manufactured Home Market Updates

 

Berkshire’s own lobbying is prodigious. See the summary in the graphic that follows.

 

BerkshireHathaway2018OpenSecretsCampaignContributionsManufacturedHousingIndustryMHProNews

Thus the tech giants plus Berkshire all share an interest in fighting antitrust action. Never forget that for Buffett and Berkshire, regulations can be a tool on their side that is wielded against other lesser firms.

 

Raw Power Over Manufactured Housing

The raw power to destroy independents is linked below.  That hot-linked text-image box takes a reader to the report which purportedly documents collusion and violations of antitrust laws.  Based upon years of research, MHProNews believes that only an AT&T style breakup of these firms under antitrust laws will suffice in the end. 

 

SmokingGunEvidenceOfAntiTrustMonopolisticCollusionMoatClaytonHomesKevinClayton21stMortgageTimWilliamsWarrenBuffettMHLivingNewsMHProNews

In a series of direct quotes in context, a document from 21st Mortgage signed by their president Tim Williams, Warren Buffett’s direct quotes from that same year’s annual letter, and video recorded comments by Kevin Clayton, all line up in what attorneys who reviewed it see as ‘smoking gun’ evidence of antitrust violations. They demonstrate how thousands of independent retailers, communities, and several producers – among others – where purportedly directly harmed by action that could be deemed an antitrust violation. See for yourself: https://www.manufacturedhomelivingnews.com/bridging-gap-affordable-housing-solution-yields-higher-pay-more-wealth-but-corrupt-rigged-billionaires-moat-is-barrier/

 

But as a much-needed lead up to federal antitrust action, Congress can hold open hearings to spotlight on camera how Berkshire brands, MHI, and the ‘big boys’ dominating our industry impact consumers, investors, and most others.  In a similar vein, the Manufactured Housing Association for Regulatory Reform (MHARR), a trade group that represents independent producers, is calling for just such congressional investigations on the finance topic: see that from MHARR, at this link here

There are resident-community leaders who are coming to a similar conclusion.

 

MH Community Leader Robert Van Cleef – Public Call – Federal Investigations of Berkshire Hathaway, Clayton Homes, 21st Mortgage, Manufactured Housing Institute

There will be an exclusive, special report planned for later this week on the revolving door and how that is connected to and impacts manufactured housing. That impacts thousands of industry operations. So if MHVille matters to you, don’t miss it.

 

ManufacturedHousingProNewsMHProNewsConfidentialTipsDocumentsNews

Submit confidential or on-the-record news tips, or comments at this linked email mailto:iReportMHNewsTips@mhmsm.com. Put the phrase “News Tips” or “Comments” in the subject line to help us spot yours in our volume of emails, thank you.

That’s today’s third installment of manufactured home “Industry News, Tips, and Views Pros Can Use,” © where “We Provide, You Decide.” ©. ## (News, fact-checks, analysis, and commentary.)

SoheylaKovachDailyBusinessNewsMHProNewsMHLivingNewsConnect on LinkedIn here. (Related Reports are further below. Third-party images and content are provided under fair use guidelines.)

ManufacturedHomeIndustry#1HeadlineNewsMHProNews

To see a sample of our emailed news update, click here. To sign up for the factory-built home industry’s #1 headline news, click here or the graphic above.

1) Marketing, Web, Video, Consulting, Recruiting and Training Resources

Submitted by Soheyla Kovach to the Daily Business News for MHProNews.com. Soheyla is a managing member of LifeStyle Factory Homes, LLC, the parent company to MHProNews, and MHLivingNews.com.

Related Reports:

You can click on the image/text boxes to learn more about that topic.

Antitrust – “You Can’t Penalize Success But Can Penalize Bad Behavior.” Former Ast AG Bill Baer, plus Manufactured Home Market Updates

Washington Leak – Justice Department Prepares Major Antitrust Investigation

Senator Cory Booker – ‘We Need a President…to Enforce Antitrust Laws,’ Digging Warren, POTUS Trump

 

Democrats, Independents, Elephant in the Room, Third Parties, 2020 Kickoff, and Manufactured Housing

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Life-Saving Effort, Call to Celebrate Manufactured Housing’s Professional Installers

June 20th, 2019 Comments off
LifeSavingEffortCallCelebrateManufacturedHousingsProfessionalInstallersDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

Still from video posted at the linked report further below.

There is not nearly enough attention paid in the manufactured housing industry’s trade media to those who ‘do the doing.’

 

Thus, whenever a story arises that gives us a chance to spotlight their important – indeed, vital – role in manufactured housing, the Daily Business News on MHProNews likes to share it.

There is also too little appreciation among the public at large as to just how heavy even a modest-sized manufactured home is.

Yesterday, on MHLivingNews, an article with a mainstream news video was posted that elevates such topics and the professionals noted.

That story is found at the linked below.  It features a literal life-saving effort that merits praise.

 

 

That’s today’s pre-dawn edition of “News through the lens of manufactured homes, and factory-built housing,” © where “We Provide, You Decide.” ©. ## (News, fact-checks, analysis, commentary.)

NOTICE: You can get our ‘read-hot’ industry-leading emailed headline news updates, at this link here. You can join the scores who follow us on Twitter at this link. Connect on LinkedIn here.

NOTICE 2: Readers have periodically reported that they are getting a better experience when reading MHProNews on the Microsoft Edge, or Apple Safari browser than with Google’s Chrome browser. Chrome reportedly manipulates the content of a page more than the other two browsers do.

(Related Reports are further below. Third-party images and content are provided under fair use guidelines.)

ManufacturedHomeIndustry#1HeadlineNewsMHProNews

To see a sample of our emailed news update, click here. To sign up for the factory-built home industry’s #1 headline news, click here or the graphic above.

 

1) Marketing, Web, Video, Consulting, Recruiting and Training Resources

SoheylaKovachDailyBusinessNewsMHProNewsMHLivingNewsSubmitted by Soheyla Kovach to the Daily Business News for MHProNews.com. Soheyla is a managing member of LifeStyle Factory Homes, LLC, the parent company to MHProNews, and MHLivingNews.com.

SubmitNewsTipsCommentsLettersToEditorMHProNews

To report a news tip, click the image above or send an email to iReportMHNewsTips@mhmsm.com – To help us spot your message in our volume of email, please put the words NEWS TIP in the subject line.

Related Reports:

You can click on the image/text boxes to learn more about that topic.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Washington Leak – Justice Department Prepares Major Antitrust Investigation

June 3rd, 2019 Comments off

 

WashingtonLeakJusticeDepartmentPreparesMajorAntitrustInvestigationDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

According to Rueter’s and Yahoo Finance, “The U.S. Justice Department is preparing an investigation of Alphabet Inc’s Google to determine whether the tech giant broke antitrust law in operating its sprawling online businesses, two sources familiar with the matter said.”

 

Officials from the Justice Department’s Antitrust Division and Federal Trade Commission, which both enforce antitrust law, met in recent weeks to give Justice jurisdiction over Google,” according to those sources, and the Wall Street Journal (WSJ) which broke the story.

This word from Washington, D.C. will fuel speculation that Berkshire Hathaway brands, along with other tech giants that impact manufactured housing and the nation, will soon become more visible targets of antitrust regulatory scrutiny. Those who’ve relied on the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) and their industry trade mouthpieces would have had no clue that this has been brewing for years. Meanwhile, MHProNews has been covering this developing topic from several angles for years. Our sister site has been laying the foundation for understanding on MHLivingNews too, in reports like the one linked below.

 

SmokingGunEvidenceOfAntiTrustMonopolisticCollusionMoatClaytonHomesKevinClayton21stMortgageTimWilliamsWarrenBuffettMHLivingNewsMHProNews

In a series of direct quotes in context, a document from 21st Mortgage signed by Tim Williams, and video recorded comments by Kevin Clayton, these all line up to demonstrate how independent retailers, communities, and producers – among others – where purportedly harmed by action that could be deemed an antitrust violation. MHProNews has given these firms an opportunity to refute or clarify the issues and concerns raised.  They and MHI have all declined responses. https://www.manufacturedhomelivingnews.com/bridging-gap-affordable-housing-solution-yields-higher-pay-more-wealth-but-corrupt-rigged-billionaires-moat-is-barrier/

 

Pivoting back to the Google-specific matter, this could be welcome news for manufactured housing industry professionals for several reasons.

Google declined comment initially, but DOJ would not confirm or deny the claim of an antitrust investigation. It’s worth noting that the European Union (EU) has fined Google billions for prior antitrust concerns.

During the Obama Administration, there was DOJ and FTC pressure on Google, but it went nowhere substantially. In April, 2016, the left-of-center news source – the Intercept – reported that “the Google lobbyist with the most White House visits, Johanna Shelton, visited 128 times, far more” than others. The Obama Administration and the tech giants – including Google – had a cozy relationship, by several mainstream media accounts.=

Lawmakers have complained about alleged political bias, its plans in China, and more.

 

“For the Good of Consumers and Competition”

TripAdvisor remains concerned about Google’s practices in the United States, the EU and throughout the world,” TripAdvisor chief executive and co-founder Stephen Kaufer said in a statement, adding: “For the good of consumers and competition on the internet, we welcome any renewed interest by U.S. regulators into Google’s anticompetitive behavior.” Note to first time visitors, MHProNews often takes direct quotes and turns them bold and brown to make them pop, but otherwise the content is as stated.

This is very big news, and overdue,” Senator Josh Hawley, a Republican Google critic, said on Twitter with respect to this investigation.  In that, he joined President Donald J. Trump’s 2020 campaign manager, Brad Parscale, who said that Google is a threat to democracy.

 

Brad Says POTUS Trump is Right: More than Facebook & Twitter, Google Threatens Democracy, Online Freedom

 

This has become an increasingly bi-partisan issue, as what follows will reflect. While MHI devotees fly into Washington, D.C. today, will this even be a topic, unless a brave member raises the relevant questions?

 

The Broader Antitrust Picture and Manufactured Housing

As MHProNews has previously reported, several Democratic lawmakers and 2020 presidential hopeful candidates have made antitrust part of their platform.  Among the most visible to date has been Senator Elizabeth Warren (MA-D), who has renounced any corporate contributions in favor of individual donors.  Perhaps of more import to manufactured housing industry firms, Warren has sent off a round of formal letters of inquiry to manufactured home community operators. See that MHProNews exclusive report, linked here.

Even more specifically, Democratic Senators have asked the CFPB to take steps to curb allegations of predatory behavior by Clayton Homes and their lenders, see that recent report, linked here.

Senator Cory Booker (NJ-D) threw down an antitrust gauntlet with ABC News, in a video and report posted below.

 

Senator Cory Booker – ‘We Need a President…to Enforce Antitrust Laws,’ Digging Warren, POTUS Trump

 

Daily Business News on MHProNews reported in 2018 that the Trump Administration had prepared an antitrust executive order.

 

Draft EO for Trump Administration AntiTrust Order Obtained by MHProNews

 

This trade media platform also reported Democratic steps taken, such as the one below.

 

Lina Khan, AntiTrust Legal Queen, Set to Join Democratic Staff, FAANG & BM, Beware – Plus MH Market Updates

 

Sources have told MHProNews that Berkshire Hathaway has ‘beefed up’ its antitrust legal team, perhaps in anticipation of just such an expected move. That may also explain why Berkshire’s industry players who have allegedly been involved in allegations of antitrust and other potentially corrupt practices have remained silent when asked about this topic.

 

UnderstandingWarrenBuffettCastleMoatMetaphorsQuotesDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

Learn more at this link here, here, and here.

MHProNews will continue to monitor this developing issue. Antitrust is likely to be a significant part of the 2020 debate.  Consolidation and monopolization is a concern across numerous industries, and manufactured housing is one of them. To learn more about this topic which is expected to expand to other giant firms, click the links above, or further below the byline and notices.

That’s this Monday morning’s first look at “News through the lens of manufactured homes and factory-built housing” © where “We Provide, You Decide.” © ## (News, analysis, and commentary.)

 

ManufacturedHousingProNewsMHProNewsConfidentialTipsDocumentsNews

To report a news tip, click the image above or send an email to iReportMHNewsTips@mhmsm.com – To help us spot your message in our volume of email, please put the words NEWS TIP or Comments or Letter to Editor in the subject line.

NOTICE: You can get our ‘read-hot’ industry-leading emailed headline news updates, at this link here. You can join the scores who follow us on Twitter at this link. Connect on LinkedIn here.

NOTICE 2: Readers have periodically reported that they are getting a better experience when reading MHProNews on the Microsoft Edge, or Apple Safari browser than with Google’s Chrome browser. Chrome reportedly manipulates the content of a page more than the other two browsers do.

(Related Reports are further below. Third-party images and content are provided under fair use guidelines.)

1) To sign up in seconds for our MH Industry leading emailed news updates, click here.

ManufacturedHomeIndustry#1HeadlineNewsMHProNews

To see a sample of our emailed news update, click here. To sign up for the factory-built home industry’s #1 headline news, click here or the graphic above.

2) To pro-vide a News Tips and/or Commentary, click the link to the left. Please note if comments are on-or-off the record, thank you.

3) Marketing, Web, Video, Consulting, Recruiting and Training Re-sources

SoheylaKovachDailyBusinessNewsMHProNewsMHLivingNewsSubmitted by Soheyla Kovach to the Daily Business News for MHProNews.com. Soheyla is a managing member of LifeStyle Factory Homes, LLC, the parent company to MHProNews, and MHLivingNews.com.

Related Reports:

Andy Gedo, Partner at ManageAmerica, Raises Clayton Homes Monopolistic Practices Debate; Manufactured Housing Institute Related Issues

 

Restraint of Trade, Manufactured Housing Institute, Clayton Homes, 21st Mortgage, Vanderbilt Mortgage, and Antitrust Law

Facebook CEO Sheryl Sandberg Discusses Antitrust Breaking Up, What Kevin Clayton, Joe Stegmayer, MHI Can Learn, plus Manufactured Home Market Updates

 

“November Rain” – DoJ’s Top Antitrust Cop – Assistant Attorney General Makan Delrahim ABA Speech on Antitrust Enforcement for Americans

Warren Buffett’s Profitable Lessons for Manufactured Housing

Does Monopoly Power Impact Workers’ Stagnant Wages? MH Industry Impact$

Prosperity Now, Nonprofits Sustain John Oliver’s “Mobile Homes” Video in Their Reports

Shocking, True State of the Manufactured Housing Industry, plus Solutions for Profitable, Sustainable Growth – May 2019

“Monopoly” in Manufactured Housing Alleged by George Allen, MHI Defender’s Turn by former Community-Investor, Self-Claimed EducateMHC Blogger

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Representative Ilhan Omar’s Bill Would Regulate Manufactured Home Community Owners

May 30th, 2019 Comments off

RepIlhanOmarPhotoBillWouldRegulateManufacturedHomeCommunityOwnersRightsDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

The devil may be lurking in the details.  The bill offered by Representative Ilhan Omar would regulate specific rights of manufactured home community owners.

 

This report will be broken into sections, that will conclude with Omar’s statement and the bill itself. It will include a complete narrative from the MinnPost that follows, which notes the multiple year drama of Lowry Grove, a land-lease community for older mobile homes and manufactured homes that was closed for redevelopment. This Daily Business News on MHProNews report will begin with some details about Lowry Grove, prior to diving into the MinnPost, narrative, other community and industry focused events, and finally Omar’s statement and the bill itself.

 

In the Lowry Grove drama, principle Brad Hoyt, of Continental Property Group, accused the City of Lowry Grove of deception in the decision to close the property.

An October 16, 2017 report by ABC affiliate KTSP 5 began as follows and included the video just below these two paragraphs.

“The developer who proposed redeveloping the Lowry Grove Mobile Home Park in St. Anthony Village said the City Council and city manager “flat out lied to me” about gaining approval for his multi-use housing plan.

Brad Hoyt, owner of Continental Property Group, said he has spent more than $10 million to acquire the Lowry Grove property, conduct surveys, carry out engineering plans and pay city fees over the past two years as he prepared a redevelopment plan for city approval.”

 

 

On May 28, 2019, the MinnPost reported that, “Denied. The Star Tribune’s Hannah Covington reports: “A federal judge has dismissed a developer’s lawsuit over a plan to build high-density housing on a St. Anthony site known for decades as Lowry Grove, the suburb’s now-defunct mobile home park. … Developer Brad Hoyt last year sued the city of St. Anthony, alleging that city officials had induced his company to buy and close Lowry Grove without intending to approve the project meant to take its place.”

Against that backdrop is the report that follows, also from the MinnPost.  It will be followed by some commentary, and links to additional resources and reports.

TrailerHouseMobileHomeManufacturedHomeFactoryBuiltHousingEvolution101MHProNews-MHLivingNews

You must meet people where they are. Terminology must be taught and caught. Make a habit of using the correct terminology. “The terminology matters because
the terminology determines the construction standards a home was
built to,” said Steve Duke, LMHA.  

 

The mainstream reports uses some common errors in manufactured home terminology, which the graphic above clarifies and explains. With that tee-up, let’s dive into the MinnPost report.

 

MinnPostOmarBillSeekEasePathMObileHomeResidentsBuyTheirParksManufacturedHousingIndustryDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

Image and text provided under fair use guidelines.

 

Industry research places the total number of Americans living in manufactured housing at 22 million, with a median household income of $30,000.

In 2016, Lowry Grove was a mobile park still home to 90 families. In 2017, real estate developers in St. Anthony were entertaining a grand design familiar to most rapidly changing neighborhoods around the country: What if the land had luxury apartments on it instead?

The families in the park were evicted in favor of this plan. And the situation surrounding the closure of the park is exactly what has prompted Rep. Ilhan Omar, who represents Minneapolis and some of its suburbs, to introduce the Manufactured Housing Community Sustainability Act (H.R.2832), which uses tax credits incentivize owners of mobile home communities to sell their property to residents.

“Those closure of the Lowry Grove mobile home park in St. Anthony really exemplifies what this bill is designed to prevent,” Omar said. “Ninety families were kicked out of their homes with little notice.”

The bill’s full name is actually The Frank Adelmann Manufactured Housing Community Sustainability Act, named for a resident in the park, Frank Adelmann, who had nowhere else to go and took his own life days before the closure. Another resident recalled to MPR at the time that Adelmann, who had lived in the park for more than a decade, was adamant about not leaving: “He told me very carefully: This is my home. I’m not going to leave Lowry Grove.”

Prof. Edward Goetz, Director of the University of Minnesota’s Center for Urban and Regional Affairs at the University of Minnesota Humphrey School of Public Affairs, has studied the situation around Lowry Grove extensively.

“A number of people moved to other mobile home parks — those were the ones lucky enough to have manufactured homes that could be moved,” he told MinnPost in 2018. “Other folks, families have split up and people have moved away from the region or moved out of the Twin Cities. Other people went through periods of homelessness afterwards, so there’s a wide range of experiences.”

Omar’s predecessor, Rep. Keith Ellison, made protections for manufactured home owners a key part of his policy agenda prior to leaving Congress, pushing for a comprehensive overhaul. One of those bills was the first introduction of the The Frank Adelmann Manufactured Housing Community Sustainability Act.

Rep. Ilhan Omar: “Those closure of the Lowry Grove mobile home park in St. Anthony really exemplifies what this bill is designed to prevent.”The bill would create a 75 percent tax credit on the sale of a mobile home park, provided it is sold to a cooperative of the residents of the community.

“Many sellers are private individuals who have owned their communities for decades. Often they face very significant income tax liability on their gains from a sale of the community. Because of a feature of U.S. tax law if they hold on to the community until they die, their heirs can sell the property with minimal tax liability,” said Shaun McElhatton, Senior Development Counsel at the Northcountry Cooperative Foundation, an organization that provides assistance to community-owned mobile home parks.

“The proposed legislation would mitigate the tax liability on a sale and, hopefully, incentivize more investor owners to sell manufactured home communities to the residents.”

The Northcounty Cooperative Foundation is an endorser of Omar’s bill and worked with Ellison, who is now the Attorney General of Minnesota, to craft the original language.

“We updated the bill to ensure that related state laws are taken into account, so that no parks are inadvertently left out, but the core of this bill was built on the excellent work of Attorney General Ellison and Sen. Jean Shaheen [D-New Hampshire],” Omar said. “As the new representative for the 5th District, I am proud to take up the baton in fighting for fair housing.”

Everything helps

Industry research places the total number of Americans living in manufactured housing at 22 million, with a median household income of $30,000. (The phrase “mobile home” technically refers to buildings built prior to 1976, before the Department of Housing and Urban Development expanded on quality standards. “Manufactured homes” are those built after 1976.)

In Minnesota, while no new mobile home parks have opened since 1991, at least 12 parks have closed. And the parks are a critical resource for families who often cannot afford to move.

In the case of Lowry Grove, the luxury apartments never came to be. After significant protest from local neighbors and community activists, the City of St. Anthony voted down the proposal. The current plan is to turn the land back into a mobile park called “Urban Grove.”

But the residents from 2016 were still evicted. Their homes were torn down.

Omar’s legislation, had it been in place at the time, might not have made much of a difference in the Lowry Grove case. “The circumstances that led to the Lowry Grove sale were not related to the lack of tax incentives, and one can’t say for sure whether such incentives would have changed the situation in Lowry Grove,” Goetz said, noting that the owner found a buyer who paid him “$2 million more than it was worth as a mobile home park,” in the hopes of turning it into an upscale development.

Still, Goetz favor’s the bill: “Everything helps,” he said.

The bill is currently cosponsored by seven members, a majority of whom are affiliated with the Congressional Progressive Caucus, where Rep. Omar serves as Whip: Representatives Barbara Lee, D-CA; Joe Neguse, D-CO; Mark Pocan, D-WI; Chris Pappas, D-NH; Annie Kuster, D-NH; Ro Khanna, D-CA; and Peter DeFazio, D-OR.

The bill will now go to the House Ways and Means committee, and Omar said she hopes the bill makes it out easily and then eventually, to a floor vote.

“You can never say for certain what would have happened in the past,” Omar said, “but the goal of this bill is to encourage owners of mobile home parks to sell to the families that actually live in the parks — rather than for-profit developers.”

 

##

 

The Omar bill, as Gabe Schneider’s narrative makes clear, predates the issues that are raised in the report below.

 

Manufactured Home Communities’ Dodd-Frank Moment Looms, Senator Elizabeth Warren Takes Aim at Several Manufactured Housing Institute Community Members

 

But it would be ill-advised to consider it apart from a growing number of local, state, and national efforts to take more control over the operation of manufactured home communities.

While Hoyt’s suit was denied, it has a familiar ring to it, as communities in mainstream news reports, and manufactured home industry voices from independently owned manufactured home have told MHProNews that they feel they are being pressured into closing, redeveloping, or into the sale of their property to residents.

A news report earlier this week makes such a claim.

 

Lawsuit By Manufactured Home Community Owner Claims City “Intent” on Putting it Out of Business

 

Readers may recall the story of Millie Francis, who lives in a resident owned community (ROC), and who asserted that her religious liberty and free speech rights were being denied by a rogue property manager, backed up by the community’s law firm.

 

MH Black Eye, or Opportunity in Disguise? Vexing Saga of Millie Francis’ Faith Based Art, Bradenton Tropical Palms ROC, Vanguard Management, Knox and Levine

 

While the matter has reportedly since been settled, there are indications that MHProNews may look into in the days ahead that the harassment of Francis has continued, even after the settlement which allowed that iconic painting to remain in place.

President Ronald Reagan periodically would quip his famous on-liner of the 9 most terrifying words, “I’m from the government and I’m here to help.”

 

 

There are times that the government can be helpful, and the late 40th president’s political life sought his vision of the proper balance between a just government and one that overreaches and can or does become tyrannical.

But it was political promises that made NAFTA or trade agreements with China and other countries that over time hollowed out millions of American factory jobs. Promises by politicians to act in a given way must be viewed through a skeptical lens, and historic, common sense analysis.

The phrase ‘unintended consequences’ may well have been coined to apply to good intentions in passing legislation going awry.

Bills are often launched that morph into something else during the legislative process. However well meaning Representative Omar’s bill may be, even what it says may mean less than what it turns into, should it become law.

A big challenge is that manufactured housing communities aren’t being built in anywhere near the numbers that they are being closed.

 

Hundreds of New Manufactured Home Communities Opened, But How Many Have Closed? Industry Research Result$

 

A related problem is that manufactured home placements on individual lots are often being blocked by local jurisdictions, contrary to the law as expressed by the Manufactured Housing Improvement Act of (MHIA) 2000. That’s what has sparked the Manufactured Housing Association for Regulatory Reform’s (MHARR) initiative, to get test cases that would spark a decision that would enforce federal law.

 

MHARR Launches “Fighting Discriminatory Zoning Mandates” Manufactured Housing Project

 

Initial reports indicate that there are states that have reached out to MHARR to explore that issue, see the related report, linked in the text-image box below.

 

“Game On” – “Fighting Discriminatory Zoning” “Moral Obligation” Fix “Worsening Nightmare” – State Associations Entering Spotlight

 

The devil is in the details. The MHIA 2000 is an example of a good law, that to a significant degree has gone unforced. HUD Secretary Ben Carson has indicated as much in prior testimony on Capitol Hill. Carson’s appearance at the Manufactured Housing Consensus Committee (MHCC) meeting in Washington, D.C. indicated his interest in making the full enforcement of the MHIA 2000 more complete.

 

HUD Secretary Ben Carson Surprise Appearance at Manufactured Housing Consensus Committee, Exclusive Quotes – Addressing Manufactured Home Industry

 

Secretary Carson argued in his speech, the full text of which is linked below – accompanied by videos of Carson and a predecessor at HUD, Julian Castro, each speaking about the importance of manufactured housing – that increasing the supply of manufactured homes are part of the solution, and he aimed to accomplish that as part of his prescription for a better America.

https://www.manufacturedhomelivingnews.com/hud-secretary-ben-carson-speech-on-manufactured-homes-manufactured-housingactive-ingredientmedicationfor-a-stronger-america/

There are good laws on the books that are going un-enforced or largely underenforced.  They included, but are not limited to:

There is a broad series of seemingly disconnected events that when viewed together are posing a growing threat to manufactured home community owners, and the manufactured home industry in general.  When examined, these point to what appears to be an unholy alliance between giant corporate interests and public officials.

Combined with MHI’s and their power broker’s in control seemingly ineffective or arguably incompetent or corrupt efforts to ‘promote the industry,’ manufactured housing is 7 months into a downturn during an affordable housing crisis.

These points raise challenges that have proven harmful to the interests of local businesses, free enterprise in general, and affordable housing needed by tens of millions of American in particular.

Omar’s legislation must be seen through the lens of those documented concerns.

Here is the full press release from Omar’s office to the Daily Business News on MHProNews.  Note that the draft of the bill and some items cited below are not all factual accurate or represent claims that in dispute.

 

Rep. Ilhan Omar Introduces Bill to Tackle Mobile Home Evictions

May 20, 2019

WASHINGTON – Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) introduced the Frank Adelmann Manufactured Housing Community Sustainability Act.  The bill would create a tax credit that incentivizes mobile home park owners to sell their property to the residents for the purposes of creating a cooperative.

“This aspect of our affordable housing crisis is too often ignored,” Rep. Omar said. “Mobile homeowners and renters are unfairly vulnerable to egregious rent hikes, abuses, and eviction. I am proud to introduce this bill to honor the memory of Minnesotan Frank Adelmann, who tragically committed suicide days before the closure of the mobile home park he called home, an event which would have left him homeless.”

Manufactured homes, also known as mobile homes, are a critical piece of our country’s affordable housing stock for working families across the country. More than 17 million Americans live in mobile home parks nationwide.  While many of these residents own their homes, they often do not own the land underneath them. This division of ownership frequently leads to eviction and displacement for residents in the event of park closures or sales. In the past two decades, this resident-owned cooperative model has thrived in several states, helping to protect thousands of Americans from displacement, while also building a sense of community among neighbors and improving overall economic security.

Specifically, the Manufactured Housing Community Sustainability Act:

  • Provides a tax incentive for owners of manufactured home communities to sell to their residents.
  • Creates a 75 percent federal tax credit on the sale of the property. So for example, if the owner sells the land to a resident cooperative, instead of paying $150,000 on a $1 million gain, the owner will only pay $37,500.
  • Includes a provision to ensure the long-term viability of the cooperative communities in order to prevent the tax incentive from being used for unfair gain by either the buyer or seller.

The bill is cosponsored by Reps. Barbara Lee (D-CA-13), Joe Neguse (D-CO-02), Mark Pocan (D-WI-02), Chris Pappas (D-NH-01), Annie Kuster (D-NH-02), Ro Khanna (D-CA-17), and Peter DeFazio (D-OR-04).

This bill is endorsed by several housing housing advocacy groups and resident associations including, the National Manufactured Homeowners Association, All Parks Alliance for Change, the Minnesota Housing Partnership, Prosperity Now, the Local Initiatives Support Corporation, and the Northcountry Cooperative Foundation.

“Many working families, seniors and others who live in manufactured home parks, like Lowry Grove in St. Anthony, buy their homes, pay their lot rent, follow the rules, and are still forced out of their homes and communities. The legislation Rep. Omar is introducing provides a powerful tool to help residents buy their communities, protect their families, and take control of their lives,” said Dave Anderson, Executive Director of the National Manufactured Home Owners Association.

You can view the full legislation here.

##

Freedom isn’t free. It never has been, and it never will be.

When the national trade association, the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) has been called a failure at representing the interests of manufactured home community owners, who broke away to form their own trade association, that bears notice.

NealTHaneyNAMHCOWhyBreakawayfromManfuacturedHousingInstituteMHI

MHProNews is awaiting a reply from Haney’s trade group on some issues of concern to independent community owners. Were does the National Association of Manufactured Housing Community Owners (NAHMCO) – the group Haney and his colleagues have founded to supposedly supplant MHI’s failed efforts – stand on bills like this one?

Time will tell.  Until then, let the buyer beware of promises that purport to fix real issues with solutions that may not be what was promised. Thus, the sometimes demonic details must be carefully watched, so that more problems are avoided.

That’s this morning’s pre-dawn episode of “News through the lens of manufactured homes, and factory-built housing” © where “We Provide, You Decide.” © ## (News, analysis, and commentary.)

 

ManufacturedHousingProNewsMHProNewsConfidentialTipsDocumentsNews

To report a news tip, click the image above or send an email to iReportMHNewsTips@mhmsm.com – To help us spot your message in our volume of email, please put the words NEWS TIP or Comments or Letter to Editor in the subject line.

NOTICE: You can get our ‘read-hot’ industry-leading emailed headline news updates, at this link here. You can join the scores who follow us on Twitter at this link. Connect on LinkedIn here.

NOTICE 2: Readers have periodically reported that they are getting a better experience when reading MHProNews on the Microsoft Edge, or Apple Safari browser than with Google’s Chrome browser. Chrome reportedly manipulates the content of a page more than the other two browsers do.

(Related Reports are further below. Third-party images and content are provided under fair use guidelines.)

1) To sign up in seconds for our MH Industry leading emailed news updates, click here.

ManufacturedHomeIndustry#1HeadlineNewsMHProNews

To see a sample of our emailed news update, click here. To sign up for the factory-built home industry’s #1 headline news, click here or the graphic above.

2) To pro-vide a News Tips and/or Commentary, click the link to the left. Please note if comments are on-or-off the record, thank you.

3) Marketing, Web, Video, Consulting, Recruiting and Training Re-sources

SoheylaKovachDailyBusinessNewsMHProNewsMHLivingNewsSubmitted by Soheyla Kovach to the Daily Business News for MHProNews.com. Soheyla is a managing member of LifeStyle Factory Homes, LLC, the parent company to MHProNews, and MHLivingNews.com.

Related Reports:

You can click on the image/text boxes to learn more about that topic.

Manufactured Home Community Case Study, UMH Properties, Lessons for Independent Community Owners, Investors

Declining Manufactured Home Shipments More Serious Than Retailers, Communities Being Told

Patrick Industries-Manufactured Housing Supplier-PATK Investor Relations Spotlights Manufactured Home Industry Challenges, Opportunities

“Game On” – “Fighting Discriminatory Zoning” “Moral Obligation” Fix “Worsening Nightmare” – State Associations Entering Spotlight

George Allen’s “Peace Offensive,” Saul Alinsky, HUD Secretary Ben Carson, and Manufactured Housing’s War

Kobayashi Maru, Crime, Kevin Clayton, Darren Krolewski, MHInsider – State of Manufactured Housing Industry

“Trailer Parks,” Presidential Candidate, Prior HUD Secretary Julian Castro on MH Community Operators, Residents Not Knowing Their Rights

Census, HUD Official Residential Construction Report for April 2019, Dare to Compare to Manufactured Housing Data

Antitrust Heats Up With Supreme Court Ruling, Monopolization Legal Experts Weigh In, Clayton-Related Comment Connection

Bryan Resident Blast Officials “Travesty by Government” – Manufactured Home Ban, Limitations, Update

 

Dr. Mark Calabria, FHFA Director Interview, Front Lines of GSE Reform, Manufactured Housing Impacts Ahead

“Home is Where Our Hearts Are” – President Trump Address to American Housing Professionals

Dr. Ben Carson Secretary of Housing and Urban Development Manufactured Housing Conference Remarks New Orleans, Louisiana, Hyatt Regency Hotel, May 7, 2019

 

“Lead, Follow … Or Get Out of The Way”

 

What is Marketing? What is Selling? Succeeding with Manufactured Homes in Your Local Marketplace(s)

May 28th, 2019 Comments off

 

SucceedingWithManufacturedHomesInYourLocalMarketplaceDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

Stating the Obvious can bring clarity to an issue.

 

Housing is one of the essentials of life.  Those are often defined as: food, fluids, clothing, transportation, and shelter.

Notice that technology, toys for all ages, and entertainment aren’t mentioned? Note too that social, spiritual, health, and political items aren’t in that essentials of life list; but should be.

The first point is that housing in general – done properly – can be a fine field of endeavor to pursue.

To be successful at anything, someone ought to be aware of reality.  Fantasies are fine in their place, and day dreaming can be useful, even in business. The Creator gave humanity the ability to imagine.  As with any gift, that can be used properly, or it can be abused.

Noting that, many in housing become ‘successful’ to the extent that they pay their bills, have a good or even a great lifestyle. But ignoring realities or trends contributes to what later causes upheavals that can cause the once successful to suddenly find themselves doing without. That’s been the case for literally thousands of manufactured home professionals in the last 15+ years.  That’s noted to express the following.

  • Reality can bite.
  • But reality can also pay handsomely.
  • Ignore reality at your peril, embrace reality and act upon it to your potential reward.

This trade media – MHProNews – is in its tenth year of business. Increasingly in recent years, we’ve dug beneath the surface stories, to pull back the veil on details that few dared do in our manufactured and modular home industry. That’s useful because reality can bite, but it can also pay. Every crisis is routinely an opportunity in disguise.

To navigate reality, one must look at topics that are uncomfortable or even unpopular.

To truly understand the marketplace, it helps to grasp what impacts people’s perceptions and moods.

  • The economy and economic drivers,
  • politics,
  • social trends (including spirituality, patriotism, etc.)
  • jobs, income (including retirement), employment,
  • investing,
  • local, national, global events,
  • public policies, including taxation, regulations, trade, immigration, land use,

there are a host of issues that one doesn’t have to be expert in, but ought to be mildly or broadly familiar with.

Some of my colleagues in publishing, marketing, recruiting, sales training, or consulting avoid these topics.  Why?  Let’s be charitable. They’ve said things like, ‘I’m a merchant and not a crusader, and I want to do business with the maximum number of people.  I don’t care about social trends, ethnic groups, politics, religion, the latest fad, etc.’

It is frankly a common, and thus understandable perspective.  Some of it may seem wise.  For example, in housing, it would be illegal to discriminate based on any protected class. It would also be impractical to do so. We as trade media and consultants have professionally advocated for social justice, even for groups which may hold views that we may disagree with. There is a risk involved in violating the rights of a protected class.  There are risks involved in any form of discrimination.

So, if someone walks into a retail or community business seeking housing, and they hold the polar opposite of my views on almost everything, does that mean I should not sell them or lease them a house? Of course not.  As noted, that’s risky and frankly not good business.  But let’s be clear.  My – or any seller’s – knowing something about a social or political trend makes it easier for me to do business with someone that has the opposite of my views.

Knowing is routinely an advantage.

So, our publishing on issues on MHProNews or MHLivingNews that others avoid – while it may be controversial – is healthy and useful to ALL of our readers, regardless of what background or beliefs they happen have.

In the video below, Lindsey Bostick says several things that are spot on.  While the viewer doesn’t know it without being told, we don’t script these videos.  When we first produced them years ago, we showed everything on MHLivingNews, glitches and all, to establish the credibility of that point.  Why?  Because people outside of our manufactured home industry largely don’t trust our industry. That’s a sad, but true reality that must be navigated.

 

 

Let’s underscore that point.  People outside of our industry largely don’t trust manufactured housing, and largely don’t believe in our products and services.  The proof is in your face. Already low and declining shipments for the past 7 months are but two examples. All of this is relevant to sales and marketing.

Let’s give some examples:

  • Are you in the land lease community business? A properly run property should be at 100 percent occupancy almost all the time and should have a waiting list.
  • Are you selling new manufactured homes at retail? There should be a strong, steady stream of well qualified prospects calling and walking into your place of business every day you are open. Your website should be busy with prospective shoppers considering housing in your market. Rephrased, if more people in your market understood manufactured housing’s realities vs. what is commonly believed, you would be overrun with customers.
  • Are you selling or brokering pre-owned (in real estate lingo, ‘existing’) manufactured homes? The above bullets are true, depending on a market, perhaps more or less so, but the principle holds.
  • Are you a producer (a factory builder) of HUD Code manufactured homes and selling them wholesale to others? If you properly understand the federal law (the Manufactured Housing Improvement Act of 2000), grasp at least broadly the marketplace’s dynamics, and you are giving your distributors (retailers, communities, developers) the information they need, you should always be at or near capacity, and working to bring more production centers online.
  • Keep in mind that when the National Association of Realtor’s (NAR) Chief Economist Lawrence Yun, PhD said that the nation needed some 8.3 million housing units, that gap can only logically be closed by factory-builders. That’s why the tech giants and other smart people are fawning over prefabricated housing.  That’s also why billionaires like Warren Buffett or Sam Zell – who politically are often quite different – are both strong believers in the manufactured housing industry.  This industry is plain common sense. Which begs the question, why does it struggle in recent years? While relevant – we’ll answer that question only in passing, further below, because that question of why manufactured housing is underperforming isn’t the focus for this article. That noted, back to our bulleted list…
  • Are you in some facet of financial services? Lenders, insurance companies, ought to be doing land rush business with an every growing number of qualified customers. 8.3 million housing units, if only half of that need was going to be satisfied by selling a new HUD Code manufactured home (MH), then some 4.15 million housing units would be needed NOW.  Keep in mind, people still have babies, people still pour across our borders, and new households are being formed.  The housing demand is outstripping the supply. That’s why housing prices are rising, said Lawrence Yun and HUD Secretary Ben Carson.
  • Suppliers, transporters, installers, service people of all types, brokers, attorneys, marketers, website builders, home furnishings, those installing or connecting utilities – everyone that is involved in those facets of or others in the MH industry could witness a growing demand IN THEIR LOCAL MARKET – given the proper marketing and sales approaches.
  • Investors who grasp the realities vs the illusions or delusions could also watch their investments soar. But it is all predicated on grasping reality, and dealing with it appropriately.

Among the comments and feedback that we get about our content – especially on MHProNews – is some variation on this.  ‘Why do you (MHProNews) bother to keep pointing out the misdeeds or manipulations of so-and-so, or that company, or association X? Simple. They are either part of the solution, or part of the problem.  If a person or organization aren’t getting to the industry’s core issues – especially if they are publicly denying or deflecting from those core issues – then to some degree they are de facto part of the problem.

Someone who said for years that he considered me a friend, and I him, told me at the Tunica Show to my face with others around us that he took offense at the following published quote.

RememberThisQuoteIrPrettyPicturesMHIndustryWillOnlyAchieveItsGoalsByResovingItsCoreIssuesLATonyKovachMHProNews

Dealing with the industry’s internal issues is a must. But several items can be dealt with successfully at the local level, so long as it navigates those same core issues.

That person is a smart dude, talented, savvy. He thought that statement was a dig at him personally, because he uses those in his business. I explained, not at all. Rather, it is a statement of fact.  If the shoe fits, someone can wear it or not, but the summary above — properly understood — makes it self-evident that the HUD Code manufactured home industry should be soaring, and not snoring.

It is inconceivable to the normal person that the industry is doing so poorly, compared to 20 years ago, unless something is wrong.  In a certain sense, that is true.  Something IS wrong.  But it isn’t the homes! Nor is it selling homes on a land-lease!

While ‘market manipulation’ and ‘image’ are issues, there is evidence that one can beat the odds at the local level. To do so requires a disciplined approach to sales training, and a unique form of marketing that compliments it. Some thing sales training should be a few hours, once a year, and you’re done. Or some take one hour a week. But if it takes more to forge a carpenter, why would a savvy manufactured housing professional believe it doesn’t take some serious time to train a good manufactured home sales agent too? Doing so routinely pass off with lower turn over, more sales, and more success.  Training is a cost that when done properly, pays.

CarpenterExampleDailyBusinessNewsMHproNews2019-05-28_0704

We have advantages that frankly none of our competitors in marketing or sales coaching have.  This will sound like bragging, but it is common sense. We engage with the public routinely.  We engage with investors, public officials, and perhaps most importantly, with people who are shopping for a home, or may someday be in the market, or who have a friend or family member shopping for a home.  That means that we have a general pulse on the marketplace, grasping numerous national trends.

We don’t claim to know every nuance in YOUR specific market. I don’t keep track of the latest paperwork change, or some twist in how that screw anchor could better be installed. Nor is it necessary for me to do so. That’s why every successful marketing and sales project that we do is ideally collaborative.  Among what you bring to the table is knowledge of your market and business. You tell us what you are encountering. What we do – based upon decades of experience, in often challenging circumstances – is look at what’s occurring, and we prescribe specific remedies and then market and train based upon those specifics.

While much is similar from coast-to-coast, there are clearly local nuances.

Years  of front-line work, and decades of successful experiences are summed up in the report linked below.

 

TonyGetsItAlColeOxfordBankTrustManufacturedHousingIndustryDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

 

Success in any effort that involves more than one person demands team work.

Given the proper mutual commitments, often challenging circumstances in manufactured housing have been profitably reversed. There are scores of third-party endorsement on LinkedIn, in letters from clients, and third party evidence that prove it. Already successful operations have watched their results soar. Working with businesses to help them profitably grow are an element of what sparked out odyssey into publishing. The fact that thousands of industry professionals will read this post, and others here today, are a silent testimony that witnesses to Al Cole’s quoted statement above.  For those seeking growth, you’ve come to the right place.  Those who’ve worked with us, know.

 

JoeDietrichLinkedInKudosTonyKovachDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

 

Frankly, there are people in our industry that think that marketing and sales are a form of manipulation.  While that may be too common, that’s not so.  There are others who simply let customers wander around, and they don’t do much to actively engage that customer in order to earn their business.  Purported market manipulation aside, all success comes down to processes that can be readily duplicated.  No one sells everybody.  But if you can routinely engage a steady stream of often well qualified buyers who can write the check or get the financing, then the key elements of true marketing and sales are at play.

Those who’ve scouted us may not know about years not years of success in manufactured housing, or documented results in RVs, or trade shows, but also proven performance in the telecom business.

 

Years ago, we developed a marketing and sales process based upon research first established by giant AT&T.  We adapted that successfully in a proprietary way to manufactured housing.  We’ve used elements of concepts from several industries, in forging a marketing and sales system that attracts the more qualified customers in a strong, steady stream. So while others teach and preach items that get some success, our methods routinely result in a high level of client, sales professional, and management satisfaction.

 

LATonyKovachPresenting%StateConvDeadwoodSDKenCorbinCommentManufacturedHousingIndustryEventDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

Tony Kovach doing a presentation in a packed room of industry professionals.

 

The biggest compliment we have, though, comes from those who opposes and slander us. Those that fear sustainable industry growth that can be achieved now at the local market level, they give us the backhand compliments that ‘never quit’ winners should cherish.  We ask for the order, we follow up, we do the basics of good marketing and selling, but we do so in a unique and proven way that customers routinely find enjoyable.  That’s why referrals come in when those customers are properly dealt with, before, during, and after the sale is made.

MHLivingNewsMHProNewsMHMarketingSalesManagementLogoSolutionsManufacturedHousingIndustryMarketinSalesManagementConsultingExpertWitnessServices

That’s a plug, but its newsworthy in an industry that is struggling for traction. When only some 8 percent of housing shoppers, according to Zillow, considered a mobile or manufactured home, that’s both a warning, but also an opportunity in disguise.  If your marketing and sales method fails to take reality into account, it will easily be outperformed by a marketing and sales approach that considers reality, and deals with it as it is.

Zillow2016HomeBuyersSurveyManufacturedHousingIndustryDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

Only 8 percent of housing shoppers considered a mobile or manufactured home, and many of those did not buy one. That’s both a challenge, but also an opportunity in disguise for those who have a sales and marketing system that deals with that reality. The shopping time line chart above also reveals that one must stick with a prospect that doesn’t make an immediate decision to act.

Housing is a necessity. Manufactured homes are more affordable.  The industry is misunderstood.  With a marketing and sales system that helps navigate those and other realities, success is routinely proven to be attainable. What we do requires ongoing discipline, because ‘easy doesn’t pay well.’  Discipline, commitment, collaboration, and our proven methods are the elements for ethically dominating a local market.

CaseyMackTonySoheylaMHProNewsTeamFirstCallDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

So who else will you find with the same level of commitment, endorsements, and track record that we’ve got? This plug is the latest edition of manufactured home “Industry News, Tips, and Views Pros Can Use” © where We Provide, You Decide.” © ## (News, marketing, sales, commentary, and analysis.) ##

(See Related Reports, further below. Text/image boxes often are hot-linked to other reports that can be access by clicking on them. Third-party images and content are provided under fair use guidelines.)

LATonyKovachQuoteManufacturedHousingIndustryWontReachPotentialAddresscoreIssuesArtificallyholdingitback466By L.A. “Tony” Kovach – for MHProNews.com.

Tony is the multiple award-winning managing member of LifeStyle Factory Homes, LLC, the parent company to MHProNews, and MHLivingNews.com.

Office 863-213-4090 |Connect on LinkedIn:
http://www.linkedin.com/in/latonykovach

Sign Up Today!

ManufacturedHomeIndustry#1HeadlineNewsMHProNews

To see a sample of our emailed news update, click here. To sign up for the factory-built home industry’s #1 headline news, click here or the graphic above.

Click here to sign up in 5 seconds for the manufactured home industry’s leading – and still growing – emailed headline news updates.

Related References:

The text/image boxes below are linked to other reports, which an be accessed by clicking on them.

Ultimate, Proven Contrarian Investing – Ethical vs. Unethical, Legal vs Illegal Manufactured Housing Industry Strategies

 

 

 

 

MIT Answers – What’s the Minimum Needed by Family of Four for Housing, Food in Each State in U.S.?

May 16th, 2019 Comments off

 

MITAnswersWhatMinimumNeededFamily4FourForHousingFoodEachStateUSManufacturedHousingMHProNews

MIT is the famous and widely respected Massachusetts Institute of Technology.  They recently provided an update to what they call their “living wage calculator.”

 

The data shown is from CNBC based upon their use of MIT’s methodology.

 

MITMassachusettsInstituteTechnologyCambridgeMassWikipediaMHProNews

 

For those who look and say, ‘that’s too low,’ keep the following in mind.

The MIT Living Wage Calculator “…determines the minimum amount necessary to meet basic needs without dipping into poverty or relying on outside help.”  It doesn’t include restaurants meals, vacation or money left for savings and investment.

MIT explains that “It is a market-based approach that draws upon geographically specific expenditure data related to a family’s likely minimum food, childcare, health insurance, housing, transportation, and other basic necessities (e.g. clothing, personal care items, etc.) costs. The living wage draws on these cost elements and the rough effects of income and payroll taxes…”

  • For two adult families where both adults are in the labor force, both adults are assumed to be employed full-time.
  • Full-time work is assumed to be year-round, 40 hours per week for 52 weeks, per adult.

The Daily Business News on MHProNews make the obvious point at the end of this infographic.

 

MITLivingWageCalculatorMassInstituteTechCNBCHousingFoodEachStateManufacturedHousingMHProNews

 

The data, as noted, is for the minimum needed, vs the average or mean cost of housing in those same states. The figures shown routinely work for manufactured home sellers.  They routinely don’t work for conventional new home sellers but work somewhat better for existing home sellers.  MHProNews has made this point below for years.

HUD Secretary Ben Carson said it like this.

 

HUDSecretaryBenCarsonAffordableHousingManufacturedHomesQuotesManufacturedHousingConferenceMHProNews

HUDSecretaryBenCarsonAffordableHousingSupplyDemandCostSavingsFHFAAppreciationSustainableOwnership5000renters200000OwnersQuotesMHProNews

To see Secretary Carson’s entire address, click here.

There’s a good case to make that Secretary Carson is right.

MostMenAppearnNeverConsideredWhatHouseIsNeedlesslyPoorAllTheirLivesHenryDavidThoreauManufacturedHomeLivingNews

For newcomers to the website not familiar with modern manufactured homes, learn more by clicking the image above or the link here.

So why is manufactured housing struggling?  Among the reasons is a point made by controversial Frank Rolfe, who was nevertheless correct about the following.

 

Carson’s comments are not on the MHI website again today. Frank, when you are right, you are right.

What’s MHI thinking? Or are they working to suppress performance while posturing efforts? Here’s another longtime MHI member, George F. Allen, who said this.

 

WeveGotAProblemGeorgeFAllenQuoteCommunityInvestorEducateMHCSECOMobileHomeParkManufacturedHomesMHProNews

To see more disconnects between Allen and his flip-flops, then and now, click here.

The evidence for factors that could cause a surge in manufactured home performance are all around, for those willing to look at facts.

The road blocks for the industry routinely grace back to what Rolfe directly, and Allen obliquely pointed to – it arguably does includes MHI, which is dominated by Omaha-Knoxville and the ‘big boys.’

YouGetMoreOfWhatYouEncourageLessofWhatYouDiscourageMartyLavin

WhenWrittenInChineseCrisisComposedTwoCharactersOneDangerOtherOpportunityJohnFKennedyQuoteMHProNews

Learn more at the links below the byline and notices. That’s the promise, potential, and the problem in tonight’s manufactured housing “Industry News, Tips, and Views Pros Can Use,” © where “We Provide, You Decide.” © ## (News, analysis, and commentary.)

 

ManufacturedHousingProNewsMHProNewsConfidentialTipsDocumentsNews

To report a news tip, click the image above or send an email to iReportMHNewsTips@mhmsm.com – To help us spot your message in our volume of email, please put the words NEWS TIP in the subject line.

NOTICE: You can get our ‘read-hot’ industry-leading emailed headline news updates, at this link here. You can join the scores who follow us on Twitter at this link. Connect on LinkedIn here.

NOTICE 2: Readers have periodically reported that they are getting a better experience when reading MHProNews on the Microsoft Edge, or Apple Safari browser than with Google’s Chrome browser. Chrome reportedly manipulates the content of a page more than the other two browsers do.

(Related Reports are further below. Third-party images and content are provided under fair use guidelines.)

1) To sign up in seconds for our MH Industry leading emailed news updates, click here.

ManufacturedHomeIndustry#1HeadlineNewsMHProNews

To see a sample of our emailed news update, click here. To sign up for the factory-built home industry’s #1 headline news, click here or the graphic above.

2) To pro-vide a News Tips and/or Commentary, click the link to the left. Please note if comments are on-or-off the record, thank you.

3) Marketing, Web, Video, Consulting, Recruiting and Training Re-sources

SoheylaKovachDailyBusinessNewsMHProNewsMHLivingNewsSubmitted by Soheyla Kovach to the Daily Business News for MHProNews.com. Soheyla is a managing member of LifeStyle Factory Homes, LLC, the parent company to MHProNews, and MHLivingNews.com.

Related Reports:

You can click on the image/text boxes to learn more about that topic.

George F. Allen’s Unity Call for MHI, MHARR, and National Association of Manufactured Housing Community Owners (NAMHCO) Examined

Clayton Homes, 21st Mortgage Corp, Vanderbilt Mortgage and Finance – Investor Lessons Learned

Manufactured Home Community Case Study, UMH Properties, Lessons for Independent Community Owners, Investors

Nathan Smith, SSK Communities, Manufactured Housing Institute Leader, Profitably Correcting the Record

Antitrust Heats Up With Supreme Court Ruling, Monopolization Legal Experts Weigh In, Clayton-Related Comment Connection

“Lead, Follow … Or Get Out of The Way”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Nathan Smith, SSK Communities, Manufactured Housing Institute Leader, Profitably Correcting the Record

May 10th, 2019 Comments off
NathanSmithSSKCommunitiesManufacturedHousingInstituteParadoyLogosLeaderProfitablyCorrectingRecordMHProNews

MHI parody logos are designed by MHProNews, a subsidiary of LifeStyle Factory Homes, LLC, and are gladly provided under fair use guidelines for media.

Mama used to say, you are known by the company you keep.

 

That’s a fairly common maxim, phrased in a variety of ways. Before applying it to Nathan Smith, let’s step back and look at a different Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) industry leader first.

The largest and best known manufactured housing builder active today is Clayton Homes, with President and CEO Kevin Clayton at the helm. For those of us who have been exposed to Clayton, there are phrases like “servant leadership” and other aspirational sounding models that have been raised by the Knoxville, TN metro based firm.

At an MHI meeting during the Patti Boerger era for their organization’s communications, Kevin Clayton addressed a break out session this writer attended. Kevin told dozens listening about the wonders of the impact of MHI’s Facebook page. He encouraged others to get involved, because they could measurably get hundreds of leads and click throughs shortly after each post.

Really?

Let’s say for a moment that’s literally true. Who were those click throughs? How many  of them where from India, vs. how many from the United States? How many were MHI fans, including past or present Clayton Homes team members?

How many actually bought a Clayton Home?

Beyond his father Jim Clayton, Kevin has indicated how Warren Buffett has mentored him. Buffett has said that the rear view mirror is always clearer than the windshield. It is a point that this writer, a Buffett critic, would agree with using our separate the ‘wheat and chaff’ discernment model.

 

InBusinessWorldRearViewMirrorClearerThanWindshieldWarrenBuffettLifehackquotes-postedManufacturedHousingIndustryDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

 

The rear view mirror is another phrase for history. Likely few people in manufactured housing have won more awards in history, at the high school and college levels than this writer has. That’s not bragging, it is what it is. History is what one looks at when we read a resume. History is what one looks at when one reads a corporate report. Every news report is actually a history report, unless it is a live feed. Somehow along the way, history has gotten a bad wrap, but we are fixing that day by day here on MHProNews and MHLivingNews.  Want to profit? Buffett himself has a keen interest in history. By the way, not every history award came with a medal. But the ones below did.

 

HistoryAwardMedalsEarnedByLATonyKovachMHProNews

Cartoon caricature of L.A. ‘Tony’ Kovach at the bottom right, who earned these history awards in statewide scholastic competitions, plus other awards in history that didn’t come with a medal.

Back to Kevin and his Facebook claim, before pivoting to Nathan Smith. We don’t claim to know the exact details that answer the questions in the paragraph above those medals. What we do know is shipment data. If there was some appreciable impact on sales, why are Clayton Homes and the industry at large’s production and shipment levels so low?

 

3ErasMobileHomesManufacturedHomesManufacturedHousingImprovementActEraSkylineChampionShipmentProductionGraphicMHProNews

In 1998, manufactured homes (MH) outsold RVs by some 3 to 2. In 2017, RVs outsold MHs by some 5 to 1. RVs recovered far more quickly from 2008. The facts raise questions. One, is the effectiveness of MHI as the post-production or ‘umbrella’ association in the country. The other question is more sobering. Has Buffett-Berkshire “Moat” strategies kept manufactured home production at historically low levels to allow a few big boy brands to consolidate others at a discounted ‘value’ by MHI insiders?

 

Let me now pivot to Nathan Smith.

When this writer interviewed Smith, it was while he was Chairman of the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI). It was before the embarrassing mainstream news reports were made public. The rear view mirror is clearer than the windshield. But viewed through the lens of history, these video clips may be worth more now today then they were then.

 

 

Smith is high energy. He is rather entertaining and fun to be around. He is politically connected.  Not as a slam to Democrats, but he is one. Let me emphasize that I’ve been an independent for years. We believe that manufactured housing is the most proven form of affordable housing in modern American history. Affordable housing and manufactured homes are ideally a non-partisan or bipartisan issue. To stress that point, we have published the article linked below.

 

LATonyKovachGoodBipartisanshipShouldalwaysBepredicatedBenefitallhonestindustrymembersnotslectfewquote

 

Now, to be clear, hindsight isn’t actually 20/20. History, as any other subject, can be spun or weaponized. So facts must be discerned from fiction. Mama was right about the company you keep, but we don’t always know what company we are keeping until later on.  That’s no disrespect to your mama or mine.

We will be doIng a report that will have the theme, MHI, which is it? It will feature a collage similar to the one at the top, with our satirical logos, created under fair use guidelines, juxtaposed with their own actual logo.

It begs the question. What really is the image of MHI? Not what the industry has been ‘trained’ to see, but what is the image of manufactured housing – and that MHI specifically – projects to the public at large?

Not only here on MHProNews or on MHLivingNews, but also in the mainstream media linked letters, our team or I’ve personally made the point that each of the problematic firms that John Oliver’s viral “Mobile Homes” video identified has ties to MHI. Is that the company you want to keep for your firm?

 

 

We are inserting in this report videos from the mainstream media of the affable Nathan Smith and his SSK Communities. Look at the reports. This first video has had more views than all of the MHI ‘story telling videos’ combined. Think about that as you watch this report.

 

 

Are those allegations and litigations the image that you want your company associated with? Bear in mind what Oliver’s video depicted. Smith isn’t alone.

 

JohnOliverHBOLastWeekTonightMobileHomesSSKCommunitiesNathanSmithClassActionLawSuitMobileManufacturedHomeMHProNews

This is a still from the John Oliver viral video that mocks Clayton Homes, and several large MHI member community operators. One of those mocked is SSK Communities.

 

 

Hey, anyone who has ever managed an older property knows that stuff happens. SSK isn’t a poor boy operation, is it?  If they can make campaign contributions, and attend the Kentucky Derby, can they fix their water lines in a timely fashion too?

So, Nathan and others at MHI arguably help make the case that there is a need for a new, “white hat” alliance that distinguishes itself from the apparent “black hats” in the industry.

 

 

Here we use the term ‘white hat and black hat’ not as a cool color for headwear, because we all know someone who is a good guy or gal that sports head wear that might be black. Here we mean a bad actor, which is identified by behavior, not a literal hat color.

TamasKovachBlackHatSunshineLATonyKovachBlackWhiteStrawHat

Don’t kid yourself. We take our work seriously, but we have some fun along the way too. Work hard, play hard. Tamas Kovach, left, L. A. ‘Tony’ Kovach, right.

 

The Hustle has called Warren Buffett the shillionare of the people. It’s their way of saying he is a shill, a con, a phony in terms of this folksy role he plays.

 

TheHustleMObileHomeInvestingHotWarreNBuffettHomeownersGetBurnedMHProNews

 

History and news meet right here on MHProNews. Because George Orwell, the author of Animal Farm and 1984, had a point.

 

GeorgeOrwellQuoteMostEffectiveWayDestroyPeopleDenyObliterateUnderstandingofTheirHistoryGeorgeOrwell1984QuoteMHProNews

 

Post-production or umbrella trade associations in manufactured housing that fail to establish and then enforce standards of ethics and professional behavior that comport with the law, and also clearly hold businesses to a higher standard are missing something huge.

 

 

GeorgeOrwellQuotesOurAGeNoSuchThingKeepingOutOfPoliticsAllIssuesPoliticalPOliticsMassLiesEvasionFollyHatredSchizophreniaManufacturedHousingIndustryMHProNews

 

Some ideas come too early, but in time, their value becomes clearer.  We floated the idea of an MHAlliance years ago. Done properly, its arguably a more valuable concept now than at the time we first presented it. Part of that alliance needs to be good standards of professional conduct. Taking good care of customers, residents, and clients.

 

FurtherSocietyDriftsFromTruthMoreItWillHateThoseWhoSpeakItGeorgeOrwellQuoteManufacturedHousingMHProNews

 

Because we are known by the company that we keep.

 

HeWhoControlsThePastControlsTheFutureHeWhoControlsthePresentControlsthePastGeorgeOrwellQuoteManufacturedHousingMHProNews

 

The number of emails, LinkedIn connections, email sign ups, and calls are rising. The merits of our taking on the industry’s black hats is becoming more apparent to more followers.

 

HowardZinnQuoteGeorgeOrwellSaidWhoeverControlsthePastControlsTheFutureHeMeantHistoryImportantShapingViewNextGenerationMHProNews

 

By the way, on LinkedIn, I don’t claim to know every soul among the thousands there that have connected. There are some invitations I don’t take, like someone who appears to be in an XXX industry type of role. But generally, I do accept professional invites. On Facebook, I stopped blindly liking someone’s FB page some time ago. Those disclaimers made, back to the topic of white and black hats companies.

If you are a black hat firm, we are happy to have you as a reader, but I would borrow a phrase from a letter we published earlier this week out of Bryan, TX. That phrase? Check out his letter, linked here. It ends with the word, “Repent.”

HowardWalkerPhotoELSViceChairmanManufacturedHomeCOmmunitiesManufacturedHousingInstituteExecCommitteeMemberQuoteTransparencyMHProNews

Thoughtful words, worth pondering. 

If you are a white hat firm, and want to distinguish yourself from those that create negative headlines like the ones about Nathan Smith posted here, please send me a message that has the subject line “White Hat Contact.”

 

SubmitNewsTipsCommentsLettersToEditorMHProNews

To report a news tip, click the image above or send an email to iReportMHNewsTips@mhmsm.com – To help us spot your message in our volume of email, please put the words NEWS TIP, or Comments or ‘White Hat Contact‘ in the subject line.

 

Because HUD Secretary Ben Carson’s comments to the industry this week can be read in a very subtle fashion. Did Secretary Carson praise or chide MHI? Did he praise or chide their behavior? Did he challenge them to live up to their potential? Read it for yourself.

 

 

The Society of Professional Journalists (SPJ) says that a journalist should hold the powerful to account. When an error is committed, one should correct the record. I’m hereby correcting the record. That’s not to be supercilious. There are embarrassing moments in my life too. But a brief embarrassment and a pattern of problematic behavior are two entirely different things.

SPJSocietyProfessionalJournalistsCodeofConductMHProNews

Besides, one always has the option of making amends. Of repentance.

You are known by the company you keep. If you wake up and have discovered that you have not been in an association that cares about keeping good company, don’t just sit there. Take action.

We aren’t looking for an association or alliance made up of perfect people, because there are none.  What we are looking for is an association that strives for perfection, because as coach Vince Lombardi said, when you strive for perfection, you can catch excellence.

 

ItsUnbelievableHowMuchYouDontKnowAboutGameYouveBeenPlayingAllYourLifeMickeyMantleBaseballHallFameMastheadManufacturedHousingIndustryCommentaryMHProNews

What hall of famer Mickey Mantle said about baseball applies to manufactured housing too.

 

Imagine a trade group whose members attract good customers, because the alliance would be made up of honest business people.  If there is a mistake, the members will pledge to correct it. 

The manufactured home industry needs a white hat trade association that deals with post-production issues. One that lives up to the Secretary Carson challenge. One that has a standards of professional conduct that have teeth, within the limits of the law. That would be a profitable boost to those who are honorably in it.

HowardWalkerJDELSViceChairmanPhotoManufacturedHouisngInstituteMHIExecuitiveCommitteeBoardMemberDailyBUisnessNewsMHProNews

The words of the late Howard Walker, ELS Vice Chairman, shared for publication with MHProNews.

The industry is underperforming. But an industry is made up of local level results. Yes, national issues and results impact you. But you won’t achieve your locations’ true potential until you’ve separated yourself from the black hat operations out there that spark the negative headlines that keeps manufactured housing collectively underperforming.

The housing industry is over a trillion dollar a year in the U.S.  The powers that be have thousands of pros thinking scarcity, instead of abundance.  Our potential at the local level is stunning.

1TrillionDollarInfographic$100BillsMillionsBillions

 

So there is a method to what some think is the madness here on MHProNews after all? You decide by your actions and behavior what company you want to keep.

2018DataShareofHousingMarketManufacturedHousingInfographicDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews612

Time is money. Knowledge is potential power. “We Provide, You Decide.” © ## (News, commentary, analysis.)

(See Related Reports, further below. Text/image boxes often are hot-linked to other reports that can be access by clicking on them. Third-party images and content are provided under fair use guidelines.)

LATonyKovachQuoteManufacturedHousingIndustryWontReachPotentialAddresscoreIssuesArtificallyholdingitback466By L.A. “Tony” Kovach – for MHProNews.com.

Tony is the multiple award-winning managing member of LifeStyle Factory Homes, LLC, the parent company to MHProNews, and MHLivingNews.com.

Office 863-213-4090 |Connect on LinkedIn:
http://www.linkedin.com/in/latonykovach

Sign Up Today!

ManufacturedHomeIndustry#1HeadlineNewsMHProNews

To see a sample of our emailed news update, click here. To sign up for the factory-built home industry’s #1 headline news, click here or the graphic above.

Click here to sign up in 5 seconds for the manufactured home industry’s leading – and still growing – emailed headline news updates.

Related References:

The text/image boxes below are linked to other reports, which an be accessed by clicking on them.

Prosperity Now, Nonprofits Sustain John Oliver’s “Mobile Homes” Video in Their Reports

Manufactured Housing’s Professional Credibility

Manufactured Housing – White Hats, Black Hats, Investing, Consumers, MH Independents

 

New Manufactured Home Professional’s Website Nears Launch

 

Declining Manufactured Home Shipments More Serious Than Retailers, Communities Being Told

Lanham Act, Monopolistic Housing Institute, err, Manufactured Housing Institute, Legal Bullies, and You

Warren Buffett, Charlie Munger Video Interview at Berkshire Hathaway Annual Meeting on GSEs Lending for Affordable Manufactured Housing and Clayton Homes

Warren Buffett’s Profitable Lessons for Manufactured Housing

George F. Allen’s Unity Call for MHI, MHARR, and National Association of Manufactured Housing Community Owners (NAMHCO) Examined

 

“Lead, Follow … Or Get Out of The Way”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Manipulating Manufactured Housing Pros – Caterwauling Mudslinger, Just Write a Check, Pay Cash, Use Plastic, and Shut You Up

April 25th, 2019 Comments off

 

GeorgeFAllenEducateMHCCommunityInvestorImageManufacturedHousingInstituteClaytonHomes21stMortgageBerkshireHathawayMHProNews

Jealousy. Lunacy. Hypocrisy. Once was, award-winning, former community-investor George F. Allen bemoans MHARR, begs them and NAMHCO for unity with MHI, all while assailing this platform. Will someone in his circle please show him how to use the GPS app on his phone?

 

Or is Allen still navigating by using an old app-less flip phone? Does he not see that the Manufactured Housing Association for Regulatory Reform (MHARR), the National Association of Manufactured Housing Community Owners (NAMHCO), himself, we and others have all left the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) for good, stated, and ongoing reasons?

Let’s unpack wanna-be “EducateMHC” magician and trickster Allen’s Good Friday assaults and caterwauling complaints about several MH industry things, as he purportedly puffs to carry MHI’s water. Yes, that’s the same MHI Allen himself quit, that he said privately and publicly betrayed had him, and that he long complained about their purported oligarchic practices. In his trying to point a finger at others, has he successfully instead pointed three fingers back at himself and his buddies affiliated with the Arlington, VA oligarchic front group?

Let’s dig into the evidence and find out.  Because after 6 months of declining new manufactured home shipments during an affordable housing crisis, manufactured housing retailers, communities, producers, lenders, and all others merit serious answers, not another artful dodge.

What is it All About?

Professionals in our industry or any other are obviously in business to make money. For the majority who want to earn an honest living, that requires information, among other factors.

So as the ancient Romans put it, “scientia potentia est” or “knowledge is potential power.”

Knowledge is only potential power because accurate information must be properly acted upon in order for it to have practical value.

But what if the information being put forth isn’t accurate?  Doesn’t that make success more difficult to obtain?  Especially for the independent business person, who may be competing against a nearby industry giant?

That’s just one reasons why critical thinking skills are necessary.  Because Allen is right about this much, there are two entirely different narratives at play in manufactured housing industry trade circles.  That begs the question, which narrative is more accurate?

As a thoughtful strategist – the Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr. put it – the purpose of education is to build character and to learn to think critically. Keep in mind what King and his colleagues accomplished.  Flash back to 1950.  Who would have thought that black Americans could have so many social, economic, and political barriers for their progress removed by the efforts of King and others working with him?

Knowledge, critical thinking – reality-based understanding – these are important for any professional, especially for those in a seemingly uphill battle.

IfMHProNewsIswritingAboutItIWantToKnowAboutItQuoteIn a normal industry, some of the types of facts and insights needed to succeed would typically come from trade associations.

Sadly, in manufactured housing – as even their exiting president Chris Stinebert obliquely suggested – the Arlington, VA based Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) has purportedly been failing at their own mission.  Why else would Stinebert wait until his final column to list all the ways that MHI was – from his insiders vantagepoint – failing to get to the root issues? To learn more, see the linked final article by Stinebert, here or above.

So while some moan or rail that MHProNews dares to hold MHI or other ‘big boys’ to account, it must not be forgotten that others – including, but not limited to, MHI insiders – have blasted MHI before or contemporaneously with this publication.

Rephrased, there is ample evidence that Stinebert and others in and out of MHI have provided to demonstrate that the Arlington, VA based trade group was weaponized to do the bidding of their ‘big boy’ masters.  Let Allen or others in MHI try to defend against that claim as best they can.

 

White Hats, Black Hats

Those ‘big boys’ are often tied to Omaha based Berkshire Hathaway, or Knoxville metro based Clayton Homes and their lending affiliates.  To be accurate and objective, there are other companies in the mix too.  MHI can arguably be seen as a mix of black hats and black hats.  The question then is, which hat is a given firm or individual wearing?  And are white hat firms giving black hat conglomerates cover for black hat activities?

The contention that much of the industry’s ills are in many ways internal did not begin here at  MHProNews.  One might argue that we were a bit slow on the uptake.  But if so, it was to make sure that the evidence existed to back the various claims being made, often by MHI insiders.

More recently, thanks to numerous voices inside and out of the Omaha-Knoxville-Arlington axis, MHProNews and our publicly-facing sister site can and have sincerely advanced the troubling case that the industry is underperforming due to the fallout from purported: antitrust violations, ongoing efforts at market manipulation and association failures.

One need look no further than the historic shipment data to recognize that the industry is underperforming.

Even publicly traded MHI member companies are making that argument that the industry is underperforming, as the Skyline Champion (SKY) graphic below reflects. The comments were added by MHProNews, but the green line reflects that the industry has a long-term average of some 224,000 new HUD Code home shipments annually.  It has achieved 372,000 plus new manufactured housing units produced in 1998.  In the mobile home era, over 55o,000 units were produced and sold for 2 years running.  What was done before can surely be done again.

 

3ErasMobileHomesManufacturedHomesManufacturedHousingImprovementActEraSkylineChampionShipmentProductionGraphicMHProNews

In 1998, manufactured homes (MH) outsold RVs by some 3 to 2. In 2017, RVs outsold MHs by some 5 to 1. RVs recovered far more quickly from 2008. The facts raise questions. One, is the effectiveness of MHI as the post-production or ‘umbrella’ association in the country. The other question is more sobering. Has Buffett-Berkshire “Moat” strategies kept manufactured home production at historically low levels to allow a few big boy brands to consolidate others at a discounted ‘value’ by MHI insiders?

 

Another example of how MHI and their big boy brands are stirring the industry’s problems is the John Oliver’s satirical viral hit “Mobile Homes” video, accessible via the linked text-image box below.

 

 

That’s not caterwauling. That’s better known as following the facts, evidence, money trail, and logic.  That’s what researchers and reporters are supposed to do, George.

 

 

CaterwaulingDefinedManufacturedHousingMHProNews

 

These examples are the very essence of the critical thinking skills that Dr. King, Jr. and so many other thinker-doers through the ages have said is necessary for human progress.

 

CriticalThinkingDefinedManufacturedHousingMHProNews

 

George F. (F?) Allen’s ‘Defense’ of MHI and Certain State Association Executives

GeorgeAllenCommunityInvestorBlogMHMPostedMastheadBlogManufacturedHousingIndustryCommentaryNewsMHProNews-133x150a

George Allen, photo credit, MHProNews.com.

George F. (F?) Allen is up-front in each blog post for some years about why he writes. “Motto: ‘U Support US & WE Serve U!’”  Meaning, write him a check, take out your plastic, or cash and he’ll provided you with his sage views.

Of course.

Never mind that he’s now out of the land-lease business, so by his own prior definition, he no longer has “skin in the game.” Ooops.

Never mind that – per sources in his own circle – despite his new ‘EducateMHC’ moniker, his own daughter reportedly failed in the land-lease community business.  That reported failure almost took Allen himself under, per those same sources in Allen’s own orbit.  Ooops.

And never mind that Allen’s and his colleagues in SECO have an idea of education that has proven to be legally problematic, as the report and cross-linked information here outlines.  Ooops.

Keep in mind that Allen likes to entertain others, and is rather good at it. Among his delights are ‘magic tricks.’  The person who is adept at slight-of-hand actions has attempted a verbal slight-of-hand for some time, one could say.  In fact, why not point out that part of the ‘mystery shopping’ service that Allen provided for years was predicated on fooling people into thinking that he was an actual prospect.

So, what follows from Allen’s blog as his Good Friday topic is prudently considered through the lens of those assertions and related factoids. He’s been successful for years in writing and organizing events for a fee.  Done well, that’s a legitimate part of the American way.  Done badly or problematically, it is a good reason to apply “caveat emptor.”  Let the buyer beware.

 

Thanks, George 😉 Allen’s Over-the-Target Responses to Recent MHProNews Reports 

Naval and Air Force pilots have long had the expression that you don’t catch flak unless you are over the target.

Sources indicate to MHProNews that some of the same state executives that complained about leaks to this publication have at times shared information with Allen or others too. That’s obviously done when those same association executives doing the ‘leaks’ thought it useful to their interests.  Perhaps so, but it is mentioned here because Allen did in his missive quoted at length further below.

Part of the purpose of good media is to hold the powerful to account. Who says?  The Society of Professional Journalists and their code of ethics.

 

SPJSocietyProfessionalJournalistsCodeofConductMHProNews

 

It has been a while since Allen has taken public aim at this platform in an apparently failed attempt to get industry readers to boycott MHProNews.  That was allegedly done as ‘carrying water for’ association executives in the MHI orbit.  In response to the SPJ bullets 2 and 3, noted above, this fact-check and analysis are hereby offered.

Allen, himself a prior MHI critic, has apparently found a new way to profit from being a periodic voice to attempt to dissuade industry independents from following the reports and analysis on MHProNews. 

OligarchyDefinedGeorgeFAllenGFACommunityInvestorBlogCOBA7DailyBusinessNewsMHProNews600

 

Allen has not bothered to explain in depth to his readers what changed his views about MHI, on the concerns he previously noted publicly below.  Does his lack of consistency bother him?

ManufacturedHousingIndustryMonopoly-Oligarchy-GeorgeAllen-PostedDailyBusinessNews

George Allen can’t have it both ways, but that doesn’t apparently keep him from trying. He has a modest following today, which once used to be a larger following. As a former client of his told MHProNews, with George “It’s AAA, All About Allen.” If someone is doing good, and Allen’s not somehow in the mix, it is not uncommon for Allen to attempt to undermine that source, per some of his own followers.

  

Facts, documents, and accurate quotes in context are #NettlesomeThings.

New readers should bear in mind the following points.

  • Allen and Spencer Roane have been offered the opportunity to publicly dispute the evidence presented here on MHProNews and/or on MHLivingNews regarding themselves and/or the concerns associated with MHI, that he himself previously voiced routinely. They’ve repeatedly declined to engage in a public discussion or debate.  That’s in keeping with their 5th Amendment right to remain silent, which we respect.  But that leaves others free to ponder, if they had the better case, why not make it in public?
  • MHI, Clayton Homes, 21st Mortgage Corp, and/or their attorneys have been made a similar offer to publicly dispute the evidence presented here or on MHLivingNews via a moderated, on camera, and in front of a live audience of industry professionals. They’ve repeatedly declined the opportunity to do so.  Once more, that’s their right.  Perhaps they’ve duck out knowing their are federal investigations underway, and that whatever they say could be used against them in a court of law?  See the video, below the next bullet.  NOTE: views of that video have apparently more than doubled since we began sharing that mainstream media report about investigations of Clayton and their related lenders, from their own hometown news station.
  • George F. Allen, various figures associated with MHI, Jim and Kevin Clayton, Tim Williams and others may be loathe to admit it today, but they have each praised this publication for being pro-industry and for the good work being done here. Now that same analysis done here that they previously praised has turned dark in their eyes.

 

 

As believers in free enterprise and the value of honest competition, Allen – right or wrong – is serving an obliquely useful function. This publication and MHLivingNews are apparently ‘over the target,’ so we are ‘catching flak.’ This isn’t the only recent attack by opposing voices.  But the other assaults are less visible, and this one by Allen is visible.

As an observable attack, Allen is thus useful to manufactured home industry investors, advocates, and professional readers to understand the ongoing dynamic within MHVille. The visceral reaction being quoted below by Allen – in his role as a periodic tool for the Omaha-Knoxville-Arlington axis – will speak for itself.

Let’s see what Allen said, and then unpack it in a very few words.  As the reader can see from the screen capture below, provided under fair use guidelines, attacking this publication was his headline topic.  That’s a backhanded compliment. The text that follows the image shown is from his blog on that date and is unedited in any fashion.

GeorgeAllenEducateMHCBlogAnalysisFactCheckAnalysisDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

 

 

Nobody Else Will Tell You This!

Enough of the Name Calling, Sensationalist Caterwauling, & Questionable Claims!

Since 2009, manufactured housing’s nadir (‘worst’) year ever, when only 48,789 new HUD-Code homes were shipped nationwide, we’ve collectively and simultaneously endured and experienced:

  • The loss of easy access to chattel capital for new home loans in communities
  • Two venerable trade magazines ceasing publication (i.e. Manufactured Home Merchandiser and The Journal)
  • Two new trade pubs birthed (i.e. MHInsider and Manufactured Housing Review)
  • A near continuous online diatribe (‘bitter & abusive denunciation’) of one – but not both, national advocates for manufactured housing (i.e. MHI but not MHARR), one or another state association executive (e.g. WI being latest target), and specific corporate executives (e.g. from Clayton Homes & 21st Mortgage) not aligned with a particular yellow journalist’s views of the manufactured housing industry.

ENOUGH IS ENOUGH! Together, as an industry and realty asset class, we should be; no, we must be, ‘working together’ to eclipse 100,000 new HUD-Code housing shipments during year 2019. Also to offset negative press coming from social activist quarters regarding predatory site rent practices foisted on homeowners/site lessees! But such a coming together will continue to elude us as long as an industry outlier broadcasts speculative contrarian tripe, tearing down manufactured housing and land lease community business models at will!

SOLUTION? Make it a point, henceforth, to support your state manufactured housing association as an active member, as well as one or more of three national advocacy bodies (i.e. MHI, MHARR & now, NAMHCO). Also ensure you’re on the receiving end of MHInsider magazine, Manufactured Housing Review online ezine, the Allen Letter (if a land lease community owner/operator), and the Allen CONFIDENTIAL! business newsletter – if a top housing manufacturer or portfolio executive!

Frankly, that’s ALL YOU NEED TO READ & BELIEVE, to stay cogently, accurately, and timely informed about industry and asset class matters! Resist any temptation to succumb to reading anything by anyone engaged in name calling, sensationalist caterwauling, and questionable claims! JUST DO IT – resist the temptation to muck & muddle your thinking. You’ll be glad you did!

If you need contact information relative to trade entities and publications identified in the previous paragraphs, simply let me know via gfa7156@aol.com or (317) 346-7156. And to subscribe to the Allen Letter and or the Allen Confidential business newsletter, visit www.educatemhc.com

FiskFiskingDefinitionManufacturedHssuingIndustryDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

 

 

Fisking – Unpacking Allen’s Missive

In no particular order of importance.

  • Allen tells his readers who to read, and who not to read. That’s his first amendment protected right, up to the point that he may be part of an organized boycott effort, because a boycott can become legally questionable in antitrust and other types of legal controversies.
  • Allen fails to admit that he and his inner circle are reportedly regular readers here on MHProNews. Thank you, to all of our readers.  Pardon the hypocrisy of some who tell others not to do, what they themselves do.  The fact that he and his circle read here is implied by his attempted critique.
  • It is Allen who fits the caterwauling definition, because what he gave are emotional appeals and red herrings, not an actual effort to debunk even a single factual claim made here or on MHLivingNews. There is no effort made by Allen to point out any failure in logic, any inaccuracy, or any of the evidence we’ve presented that sparked his public moaning.

Here is a pull quote that bears a nod of interest.

Together, as an industry and realty asset class, we should be; no, we must be, ‘working together’ to eclipse 100,000 new HUD-Code housing shipments during year 2019.”   The reality is that the industry will not be ‘working together’ – because some are arguably working to purportedly eliminate their industry competition, by direct and indirect means.  Allen’s related quote is equally lacking in logic. He wants people to support “one or more of three national advocacy bodies (i.e. MHI, MHARR & now, NAMHCO).” Excuse me, sir? MHARR and NAMHCO exist because MHI – in their view – have failed the industry.  It is an either or proposition. 

NealTHaneyNAMHCOWhyBreakawayfromManfuacturedHousingInstituteMHI

Once the rules of engagement and methods used are better understood, then one can often predict what will follow. 

DannyGhorbaniFormerMHIVpQuoteFoundingMHARRPresidentQuoteDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

 

Why Hasn’t Allen Explained to MH Community Readers How Clayton/21st Hurt Their Interests?

Note that neither Allen, nor anyone else in the orbit of industry publishing he has cited has attempted to debunk the documents, direct quotes and evidence linked from the text-image box below.

 

SmokingGunEvidenceOfAntiTrustMonopolisticCollusionMoatClaytonHomesKevinClayton21stMortgageTimWilliamsWarrenBuffettMHLivingNewsMHProNews

In a series of direct quotes in context, a document from 21st Mortgage signed by Tim Williams, and video recorded comments by Kevin Clayton, these all line up to demonstrate how independent retailers, communities, and producers – among others – where purportedly harmed by action that could be deemed an antitrust violation. Why hasn’t George F. (F?) Allen told his readers how that cost them money? Why is Allen giving perps cover?

 

What Allen fails to tell his readers is how that attack on industry independents harmed independent owners of manufactured home communities.  Yet Allen claims to be their protector.  How so? Isn’t he giving other big time cons cover?

Allen cited in this and a prior posting about the Manufactured Housing Association for Regulatory Reform (MHARR) and the National Association of Manufactured Housing Community Owners (NAMHCO).  Those associations are both breakaways from MHI. They exist because each trade group’s members believed that MHI wasn’t getting the job done properly.

Allen fails to mention that important fact. By contrast, MHProNews has not missed that obvious mark.

Calls for ‘unity’ by Allen or MHI sound good, warm and fuzzy — until they are carefully examined. Unity behind what? Unity with what goal?

If the big boys absorb the smaller firms at a discounted value due to market manipulation, that’s unity.  Is that the unity that Allen wants?  Why is Allen de facto working for the interests of the consolidators that he periodically takes pot-shots at? Isn’t it just another head-fake?

What Allen ignores in his missive – either through ignorance or perhaps from incentives offered by the ‘big boys’ – is that a key reason that the industry is underperforming is rooted in the Omaha-Knoxville-Arlington axis and their allies.  Allen makes no effort to debunk the evidence published here or on MHLivingNews for that claim.  Why would he?  The powers that be and their own attorneys won’t touch that topic in public, and perhaps with good reason. So, in goes GFAllen…

Allen ignores the fact that Clayton has been the source of embarrassment to the industry, starting not long after Warren Buffett bought them for Berkshire Hathaway.

 

 

Thus, it is unlikely that Clayton, 21st, or MHI will publicly respond to our published – documented, and evidence based – concerns.

Allen laments Frank Rolfe, predatory community operators, and the John Oliver video errantly dubbed “Mobile Homes.”  But what F (F?) Allen fails to mention is that MHI is connected to each operation in that Oliver video. Ooops.

Several Florida newspapers opted to run the same letter sent by our publisher.  The reportedly did so only after an editor checked the claims and sources, per the editor that did the fact checking. The letter was sent to only 1 publication, but at least 5 have run it.

 

 

Those claims lodged here, on our sister site MHLivingNews, and summarized in that 300 word letter published in the 5 links above all remain unchallenged.

MHARR’s new initiative, that Allen both praises and slams at the same time, exists precisely because MHARR states their belief that MHI has so dropped the ball on post-production issues that they have no other choice but to try to act where MHI is failing to do so.

 

“Lead, Follow … Or Get Out of The Way”

 

It’s America.  People are free to write a huckster and incentivized mouthpiece a check if they want to do so. They are free to read Allen or attend his meetings.  Those that go say the networking is pleasant and useful, but some lament the ‘education’ part of it.

But what SECO and the Allen Roundtable arguably prove is that professionals in manufactured housing are so desperate for answers and professional opportunities, that they will listen even to someone with his track record of recent years. In years gone by, Allen helped found the National Community Council (NCC), which is part of MHI. But more recently, Allen himself has quit MHI and the NCC.  Allen himself won’t pay to go to their fundraisers, errr, ‘meetings.’

Allen has positioned himself to fill a vacuum.  As soon as someone else steps up and offers an alternative, don’t be surprised if his meetings and ‘education’ vanish like a fleeting morning fog in sunny Florida.

Once more, our publisher invites Allen – or the Omaha-Knoxville-Arlington axis – to publicly dispute and disprove

  • in front of a live audience of industry professionals,
  • with moderator and
  • on camera any of the claims made here on pro-growth MHProNews or MHLivingNews.

You can’t solve a problem by ignoring the root causes.  That’s what Allen either doesn’t get or has arguably been incentivized to ignore and obscure.

Thus despite Allen’s caterwauling and attempted slight of hands, our published case against the Omaha-Knoxville-Arlington axis, their surrogates and allies stands.  If any of these concerns or allegations we’ve reported or that others have raised were easily disproven, why hasn’t anyone in the Omaha-Knoxville-Arlington orbit and/or their surrogates stepped up to the plate and made the public effort?

GeorgeFAllenPhotoEducateMHCMobileHomeLandLeaseCommunityAdvocateExpertLogoManufacturedHousingMHProNews

People can make mistakes, and people can be misled. But the mature person admits an error, and that is part of the Society of Professional Journalists code of ethics. Make corrections promptly and prominently. Where has Allen ever admitted an error? He was either right to condemn MHI before, or right to defend them now. He can’t have it both ways.

Conclusions? 

George F. (F?) Allen (GFA) is arguably either:

·        confused,

·        clueless,

·        corrupt,

·        or some combination of those.

As noted, Allen and his buddy Spencer Roane have been given the opportunity several times to debate the issues he laments publicly with our publisher in a moderated session, on camera, in front of a live industry professional audience. Allen and Roane both keep ducking that offer. Shall we add the word cowardly to the bulleted Cs above?

BTW, that same offer to discuss and debate the issues has been repeatedly extended to the Omaha-Knoxville-Arlington axis. Allen has apparently been carrying water for them in recent months, and perhaps this is missive by GFA their reply.  But given the history of Allen previously decrying their rigged system, as was shown above, what was the MH Axis thinking?  Can’t they come up with a better surrogate? If not, doesn’t that speak volumes too? 

 

UnderstandingWarrenBuffettCastleMoatMetaphorsQuotesDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

Never forget that even during medieval times, castles and their moats were in fact breached. And ponder that GF Allen may just be another piranha, shark, or alligator in the Buffett moat.

 

That’s this morning’s first installment of manufactured housing Industry News, Tips, and Views Pros Can Use,” © where “We Provide, You Decide.” © ## (News, analysis, and commentary.)

 

ManufacturedHousingProNewsMHProNewsConfidentialTipsDocumentsNews

To report a news tip, click the image above or send an email to iReportMHNewsTips@mhmsm.com – To help us spot your message in our volume of email, please put the words NEWS TIP in the subject line.

NOTICE: You can get our ‘read-hot’ industry-leading emailed headline news updates, at this link here. You can join the scores who follow us on Twitter at this link. Connect on LinkedIn here.

NOTICE 2: Readers have periodically reported that they are getting a better experience when reading MHProNews on the Microsoft Edge, or Apple Safari browser than with Google’s Chrome browser. Chrome reportedly manipulates the content of a page more than the other two browsers do.

(Related Reports are further below. Third-party images and content are provided under fair use guidelines.)

1) To sign up in seconds for our MH Industry leading emailed news updates, click here.

ManufacturedHomeIndustry#1HeadlineNewsMHProNews

To see a sample of our emailed news update, click here. To sign up for the factory-built home industry’s #1 headline news, click here or the graphic above.

2) To pro-vide a News Tips and/or Commentary, click the link to the left. Please note if comments are on-or-off the record, thank you.

3) Marketing, Web, Video, Consulting, Recruiting and Training Re-sources

SoheylaKovachDailyBusinessNewsMHProNewsMHLivingNewsSubmitted by Soheyla Kovach to the Daily Business News for MHProNews.com. Soheyla is a managing member of LifeStyle Factory Homes, LLC, the parent company to MHProNews, and MHLivingNews.com.

Related Reports:

You can click on the image/text boxes to learn more about that topic.

Mobile Home Militia – “Clayton [Homes] Wants Your Cornbread Too” “Join the Revolution” – ‘You Gotta Have Swagger’

Manufactured Housing Institute Members Defending MHI, Great Debate About Manufactured Home Industry Progress, Problems, and Profits

Warren Buffett’s Moat, Understanding Manufactured Housing Requires Grasping Strategic Economic Moats

Conquest Capitalism – Thoughts of Chairman Warren Buffett – Billionaires Campaign to Control Trillion Dollar Affordable Housing Market

HUD Study, Analysis of Zoning Discrimination Against Manufactured Housing Sought

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Top Independent Manufactured Home Retailer Outsells Clayton Homes, Doesn’t Sell CMH Products, Per Mainstream News

February 25th, 2019 Comments off

 

TopIndependentManufacturedHomeRetailerOutsellsClaytonHomesDoesn'tSellCMHProductsPerNaplesDailyNewsUSATodayMHProNews

 

An independent manufactured home retailer has made mainstream news with a media outlet that is part of the USA Today family of media brands. For whatever reasons, that retailer only sells new homes built by members of the independent producer’s trade group, the Manufactured Housing Association for Regulatory Reform (MHARR).

 

ChrisLeePhilLeeJaniceLeeLeeCorpHomesFlorida#1RetailermanfuacturedHousingjacobsenHomesScotbiltHomesMHProNewsAccording to an article in the Naples Daily News, part of the USA Today family of newspapers, Estero, FL based LeeCorp Homes was recently named as the top retailer of manufactured homes in Florida.

Rephrased, that claim means that they are outselling Clayton Homes in Florida, or any other retailer in that state.

Our company has played an integral role in shaping the landscape of quality, custom-designed manufactured housing in Southwest Florida over 35 years,” said Chris Lee, president of LeeCorp Homes, “The key to our success lies in our ability to oversee every aspect of the homebuilding process, from customized design to permitting to installation and final move-in.”

Florida has been the #3 seller of manufactured housing in recent years. LeeCorp Homes sells new HUD Code manufactured homes built by Jacobsen Homes and ScotBilt Homes. Both of those producers are members of MHARR, according to federal and other sources.

Rephrased, based on the report, the accomplishment by LeeCorp Homes is quite impressive.  Why?  Because there are vertically integrated operations in the same state – including Clayton Homes – that LeeCorp Homes is outselling.

Independent retailers of manufactured homes, take heart.

MHARR2018vs2017ToptenManufacturedHousingStatesManufacturedHousingAssocRegualtoryReform

Data per MHARR, graphic by MHProNews.

 

According to their website and the Naples Daily News, “LCH Enterprises of Southwest Florida, LeeCorp’s construction and engineering sister company, was created in 2005 to implement turn-key packages including installation and completion of each new home. The company expanded its operation to include a second sales center in North Port to serve customers in the Port Charlotte, North Port, Venice, Englewood, Nokomis, Osprey and various areas.”

On this date, the firm enjoys a BBB rating of A+

LeeCorpHomesBetterBusinessBureauRatingDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

 

Interesting MH Industry Takeaways?

It should be noted that LeeCorp Homes has used advertorials, besides other marketing methods.

As with many forms of marketing, there are arguably good, bad, or mediocre uses for advertorials,” said manufactured home industry consultant and MHProNews publisher, L. A. ‘Tony’ Kovach. “Our critiques of the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) uses of advertorials is NOT about the generic use of that medium of marketing. Rather, we’ve objected to what is arguably misinformation or problematic statements or claims that MHI has made using StatePoint or other advertorials. There are times we’ve used factually accurate advertorials that rocked for specific clients.”

What Tony Kovach is explaining is that advertorials are only as good as the content that goes in them. His critiques of MHI advertorials are many, including the obvious point that despite their claims, they clearly haven’t moved the needle on new manufactured home shipments nationally.

That said,” Tony Kovach elaborated, “often the best option – when possible – is getting authentic news coverage, rather than advertorials. For that matter, our MHLivingNews platform has proven valuable for specific clients. But on MHLivingNews, we do authentic interviews, not scripted or staged videos. The public can often discern the difference between what’s real and what’s faked.”

Customers interviewed on MHLivingNews are not paid to participate, they do so because they want to share their experiences with manufactured homes, the community that they live in, and those that sold them there home.  On one occasion, a meal and fuel cost was offered, in order to get a group of customers to participate in a focus group.  But there was not real monetary compensation made with that landmark focus group.

Tony Kovach is the co-founder of MHProNews, which rapidly became the most read trade media in all of manufactured housing. He also co-founded MHLivingNews, which is the arguably the #1 educational resource for consumers and others who are interested in learning more facts about manufactured home living.  He’s been cited by mainstream media on numerous occasions over the years as an industry expert, including being noted in the first footnote of the 2018 research by the National Association of Realtors ™ (NAR) 2018 report on manufactured homes.

We’ve often been able to get our clients mainstream media coverage in authentic ways,” Tony Kovach said. “We do that in part by framing a topic in a manner that strikes a mainstream news source as relevant to their audience. But if that doesn’t work, advertorials and numerous other options are certainly a viable alternative.

 

Consistency and Third Party Authenticated 

Another key to credibility in marketing is consistency. Sadly, MHI has published paid-for information via press releases and/or advertorials that have purportedly proven to contradict their own previously stated claims,” Tony Kovach explained. “We make a point of referencing a third-party information as often as possible. That too ads to credibility. Furthermore, unlike some bloggers or publishers in our industry’s trade media, that seem to have no problem making periodic claims without evidence.  Or as bad, using information or phrases as their own that actually originally came from another source they’ve seen, heard, or read.”

See related report about Florida, other states, and more, below the byline, notices, emailed headline news signup, and offers.

 

The Bottom Line About this Florida Based Firm?

LeeCorp Homes ought to feel good and is hereby applauded for accomplishing the results stated in the Naples Daily News, and for their fine BBB rating.

That’s manufactured home “Industry News, Tips, and Views Pros Can Use,” © where “We Provide, You Decide.” © ## (News, analysis, and commentary.)

ManufacturedHousingProNewsMHProNewsConfidentialTipsDocumentsNews

To report a news tip, click the image above or send an email to iReportMHNewsTips@mhmsm.com – To help us spot your message in our volume of email, please put the words NEWS TIP in the subject line.

NOTICE: You can get our ‘read-hot’ industry-leading emailed headline news updates, at this link here. You can join the scores who follow us on Twitter at this link. Connect on LinkedIn here.

NOTICE 2: Readers have periodically reported that they are getting a better experience when reading MHProNews on the Microsoft Edge, or Apple Safari browser than with Google’s Chrome browser. Chrome reportedly manipulates the content of a page more than the other two.

(Related Reports are further below. Third-party images and content are provided under fair use guidelines.)

1) To sign up in seconds for our MH Industry leading emailed news updates, click here.

ManufacturedHomeIndustry#1HeadlineNewsMHProNews

To see a sample of our emailed news update, click here. To sign up for the factory-built home industry’s #1 headline news, click here or the graphic above.

2) To pro-vide a News Tips and/or Commentary, click the link to the left. Please note if comments are on-or-off the record, thank you.

3) Marketing, Web, Video, Consulting, Recruiting and Training Re-sources

SoheylaKovachDailyBusinessNewsMHProNewsMHLivingNewsSubmitted by Soheyla Kovach to the Daily Business News for MHProNews.com. Soheyla is a managing member of LifeStyle Factory Homes, LLC, the parent company to MHProNews, and MHLivingNews.com.

 

 

 

Related Reports:

You can click on the image/text boxes to learn more about that topic.

Which Manufactured Home Producer is the #1 Leader in the Hot Florida Market?