Archive for May, 2019

A Clayton Homes Reveal, FOCUS Groups Return, & Wealth Redistribution

Thursday, May 30th, 2019

; Copyright 2019; www.EducateMHC.com

Perspective. ‘Land lease communities, previously manufactured home communities, and earlier, ‘mobile home parks’, comprise the real estate component of manufactured housing

This blog posting is sole national advocate, official ombudsman, historian, research reporter, education resource & online communication media for North American land lease communities

To input this blog, &/or affiliate with EducateMHC, formerly COBA7, telephone Official MHIndustry HOTLINE: (877) MFD-HSNG or 633-4764. Also email EducateMHC@gmail.com

Motto: ‘U Support US & WE Serve U!’ Online media goal? Inform, opine, transform & improve manufactured housing shipment & land lease community lifestyle! Visit www.educatemhc.com

INTRODUCTION: Almost everything you’ve wanted to know about Kevin Clayton, Clayton Homes, and Berkshire-Hathaway, but didn’t know who to ask. It’s coming your way soon!
And FOCUS Groups – a popular land lease community owner education resource of the past being resurrected this Summer? Also, U.S. Senator Elizabeth Warren throws her political influence into aggressive rent increase fray in Iowa. All three excitingeveents in this week’s blog

I.

An Insider Look at the Allen CONFIDENTIAL! Newsletter

‘Dark colored sports jackets, open-neck blue sports shirts & blue jeans’…the corporate uniform at Clayton Homes, when Kevin & his three top execs gather for a two page photo spread in the May 2019 issue of Builder magazine.’ That’s how the one of ten strategic news stories, in the June issue of TAC! begins.

Then follows five news bytes every one of you reading this should want to know: ‘Mr. Buffett’s dream scenario for a family….’, specific counts relative to Clayton’s corporate infrastructure, the firm’s five essential checkpoints for potential acquisition targets, Clayton’s nexus to success, and ‘new class’ of homes.

But don’t fret. While the June TAC! will be distributed next week, the same story will likely be featured in the July issue of the Allen Letter. So, three ways for you to learn things about Clayton Homes you never knew before: TAC!, Allen Letter, and your own copy of Builder magazine.

II.

‘Land Lease Community Lifestyle Done Well’ REVISITED!

In last week’s blog posting (#534) we revisited the once very popular FOCUS Group concept, long in play among (then) manufactured home community owners/operators several years ago. While I certainly hoped for response to the idea, I was SURPRISED at the number – and nature of, positive responses, from contemporary land lease community owners/operators interested in getting together, once again, in these small group 1 ½ day sessions!

By way of review; what we’re talking about here, is where/when community owners, including small to mid-sized portfolio ‘players’, recommend topics of active interest, to the FOCUS Group meeting organizer. Who, in turn, arranges for a come together of a dozen owners/operators, preferably on-site in an easily accessed land lease community with a suitable clubhouse (O perhaps, in this case, at the RV/MH Hall of Fame in Elkhart, IN., on 5 August 2019). The organizer narrows the topic list down to four, maybe five – doable in a day’s time; then informs interested parties as to the date and location of a host hotel and specific meeting location.

The usual sequence. Networking dinner together the first night. Meet on-site the next morning. Work thru the agreed upon agenda, starting no later than 9AM. Work thru lunch, ending with a new topic in the early afternoon. Conclude by 2PM or thereabouts, for those needing to head home. Others oft stay for more conversation, tour of the property, etc… Meeting costs? Shared pro rata by attendees; usually honorarium for meeting organizer and facility rental. Also food and beverage unless meeting location host sponsors same. When topics are announced, ahead of time, participants are expected to come prepared to discuss, even have handout material to share with peers.

So, if seriously interested in participating in a FOCUS Group meeting on 5 August 2019 either at a local hotel or the RV/MH Hall of Fame, in Elkhart, IN. (Same day as this year’s annual RV/MH Hall of Fame Induction Banquet…call 574/293-2344 for tickets), let me know ASAP via email: gfa7156@aol.com or Official MHIndustry HOTLINE: (877)MFD-HSNG or 633-4764. Willing to plan this FOCUS Group meeting if a minimum of ten individuals commit to attend.

FOCUS Groups have been and continue to be an excellent way for owners/operators to ensure Land Lease Community(ies) Lifestyle is Done Well Going Forward! So consider this opportunity!

III.

Wealth Redistribution in Year 2020 & Beyond?

Expect to hear more about this contentious topic as socialist-leaning politicians strive to gain electoral traction with the American citizenry. A recent article in Bloomburg Businessweek was titled, The Wealth Detective’, with the subtitle: ‘The rich know how to keep their money secret. Economist Gabriel Zucman knows how to find it.’ Here are a couple gems contained therein:

• “Minimum amount Zucman calculated wealthy stash in offshore accounts = $7.6 trillion” – “accounting for 8% of global household financial wealth; 80% of those assets were hidden from governments, resulting in about @200 billion in lost tax revenue per year.”

• “Zucman & Saez’s latest estimates show the top 0.1% of taxpayers – about 170,000 families in a country of 330 million people – control 20% of American wealth, the highest share since 1929. The top 1% control 39% of U.S. wealth, and the bottom 90% have only 26%. The bottom half of Americans combined, have a negative net worth.”

Let’s bring this high-flying projection of unbalanced financial gain home to roost. Recall how we’ve been talking, of late in this blog, about the private equity wave of land lease community consolidation? And how aggressive rental homesite rate increases appear to be the common characteristic of the movement? Well, ‘proof of this’ is playing out in the state of Iowa. There, U.S. Senator Elizabeth Warren and Iowa representative Dave Loebsack recently wrote directly to private equity firm Havenspark Capital, of Utah, about the firm’s 58 percent ‘rent increase’ at Golfview MH Court, where site rent jumped from $315 to $490 when the firm acquired the land lease community.

While this incident can be viewed as a ‘shot across the bow’ of predatory landlording, it does have serious implication for any land lease community owner/operator, not just the private equity wave folk, who’re tempted to raise rental homesite rates beyond the traditional 3:1 ratio (i.e. 3BR2B apartments at $900/month? Then LLCommunity site rent maybe at $300/month+/-).

Besides, if HUD-Code manufactured housing AND land lease communities really want to continue being considered a key part of the solution to this nation’s ongoing affordable housing crisis; well, they need to keep housing prices AND rental homesite rates ‘together’ within the 30 percent Housing Expense Factor (‘HEF’), i.e. Area Median Income (‘AMI’) = $36,000, then 30% HEF suggests $10,800/year, or $900/month is available for PITI (principal, interest, taxes, insurance) AND site rent together! The wildcard factor here, though, is whether annual household utility expenses are paid as part of the 30% HEF – leaving less $ available for house & rent; or, paid ‘in addition to’ the 30% HEF, making the transaction ‘risky’ as the homeowner/site lessee now pays a Household Expense Factor (‘HEF’) greater than the affordable 30 percent. Think about it. How are your in-community deals structured? To put your customers ‘at risk’ or keep them in ‘affordable housing’? How the utility bill question is answered does make a difference;!

***

George Allen, CPM, MHM
EducateMHC
Box # 47024, Indianapolis, IN. 46247
(317) 346-7156

E-HOP Chattel Capital lending Program Debuts!

Friday, May 24th, 2019

@ 22 May 2019; www.educatemhc.com

Perspective. ‘Land lease communities, previously manufactured home communities, and earlier, ‘mobile home parks’, comprise the real estate component of manufactured housing.’

This blog posting is sole national advocate, official ombudsman, historian, research reporter, education resource & online communication media for North American land lease communities

To input this blog, &/or affiliate with EducateMHC, formerly Community Owners (7 Part) Business Alliance, or COBA7, use Official MHindustry HOTLINE: (877) MFD-HSNG or 633-4764

Motto: ‘U Support US & WE Serve U!’ Online media goal? Inform, opine, transform & improve manufactured housing & land lease community lifestyle! Visit www.educatemhc.com

INTRODUCTION: Hang on to your seats today! MUCH GOOD & CHALLENGING NEWS for you to absorb and use in upcoming business plans, decisions, and actions:
• E-HOP chattel finance program debuts with Park Lane Financial.
• Two Days of Plant Tours & Home Sales Seminars = only time this year!
• Manufactured Housing Manager certification available to you on 19 June in Elkhart, IN.
• A plan to ‘raise the bar’ on land lease community experience and lifestyle!
• Once more, a plea for industry unity among MHI, MHARR, & NAMHCO.
See what I mean? That’s a heckuva lot of NEWS to wrap into one weekly blog posting for you!

I.

FLASH NEWS – FLASH NEWS

E-HOP: in-community Chattel Financing Program Debuts!

“The Earnings-based Home Ownership Program (‘E-HOP’) is now a reality”, announces Spencer Roane, MHM, of Pentagon Properties, Atlanta, GA. $10,0000,000 has been committed to this new manufactured home chattel loan pilot program by Park Lane Finance. Initially, only a select group of experienced and successful land lease community owners/operators will be involved during the next 12 months.

To learn more about the program, and to express interest in possibly participating in the future, contact Kirk McDowell at (561)644-1441 & via kmcdowell@parklanefinance.com

E-HOP is the result of two years of research, negotiating, and hard work by Spencer Roane, MHM, and a group of land lease community owners/operators, most of whom are also involved in planning and hosting the popular annual SECO conference in Atlanta, GA., every Fall. 9 & 10 October 2019 are the dates for this year’s SECO conference, and know E-HOP will be a highlight of the event! Google SECO Conference for additional event information. See you there!

II.

Two Days of Plant Tours & Home Sales Seminars

The Only HUD-Code Housing Sales Training Program for Land Lease Community Owners/operators Offered Anywhere, Anytime in the U.S.!

If you need to learn HOW TO ‘spec & price’ new HUD-Code housing to ‘sell’ in your local housing market and on-site; HOW TO buy homes directly from the factory; HOW TO effectively market & sell same on-site; and HOW TO seller-finance these transactions – or rent units as free-standing apartments, YOU will be present at the RV/MH Hall of Fame in Elkhart, IN., on 17 & 18 June 2019.

This two day program debuted in 2016 and is a perennial sold-out event! Historically, independent (street) MHRetailers & ‘company stores’ filled vacant rental homesites with new homes, but not anymore. If you own one or more land lease communities, you will ‘survive & thrive’ ONLY if you buy, sell, and seller-finance new and resale manufactured homes on-site! So, phone (317) 247-6258 x 11 for more information and to register. Phone (574) 333-3707 to make a hotel reservation, for $105/night – when mentioning ‘Indiana Manufactured Housing Association’, during the reservation process at the Sheraton Elkhart (3254 Cassopolis St.).

And, if still not trained and certified as a Manufactured Housing Manager, plan to stay over one more day (6/19/2019) to participate in the popular MHM program put on by EducateMHC. This is, by far, the most popular professional property management certification program in the U.S. today, with nearly 1,500 MHMs now owning/operating land lease communities throughout the U.S. and Canada! For more info and to register, visit www.educatemhc.com or erin@educatemhc.com The $295 per person fee gets you a copy of the new, 9th edition of Land Lease Community Management text, handout material, as well as gold MHM pin and calligraphied MHM certificate.

III

The Land Lease Community Lifestyle Done Well

All the Pieces Are In Now in Place – to Ensure Homeowner/site lessees Experience the Best Environment Possible – Promoting & Protecting Their Manufactured Housing Lifestyle!

And these key pieces are:

• Manufactured Housing Institute’s (‘MHI’) National Communities Council (‘NCC’) division, since January 1996, representing land lease community owners/operators in our nation’s capitol. NCC is best known for its’ Spring & Fall Leadership Forums.

• National Association of Manufactured Housing Community Owners (‘NAMHCO’), since 2018, is the land lease community real estate asset class’ lobbyist in Washington, DC.

• EducateMHC, continues COBA7’s 40 year program of statistical research, intellectual product creation & distribution, print & online communication, property management training & certification via MHM program, & interpersonal networking opportunities

So, is anything missing at this point? Yes, but first, a brief description of ‘where we are today’ as an industry and realty asset class, and how we’ve arrived at this point.

By now, everyone knows the manufactured housing industry, and land lease communities, have been engaged in a sweeping paradigm shift since the turn of the century. A paradigm shift typified by land lease community owners/operators, oft supplanting independent (street) MHRetailers and ‘company stores’ as primary means of distributing new HUD-Code homes, by now buying and siting new units directly onto rental homesites throughout their properties, then sell and seller-financing the transaction – or rent them out as self-contained apartments. Most of the 500+/- known portfolio ‘players’ are well into this business model*1; however, smaller Mom & Pop-owned/operated properties continue, for the most part, to rely on aforementioned MHRetailers to fill vacant rental homesites – or do nothing at all to this end.

NOW a unique opportunity presents itself to the manufactured housing industry and owners/operators of land lease communities nationwide.

What can we do to ensure the ‘Land Lease Community Lifestyle Is Done Well’ for our homeowners/site lessees and apartment renters?

Professional property management (‘PM’) is part of the answer, but given that there’s only one active national classroom program in place today, EducateMHC’s MHM certification program, that’s ‘far too little & not soon enough’ to help much here.

NO, there needs to be, in this veteran industry observer’s opinion, a new and unique property owner and PM executive level learning and networking opportunity and experience, incorporating features once provided by the…

• Urban Land Institute’s Manufactured Housing Communities Council (‘MHCC’) ‘think tank’, circa 2004-2015. Where industry and asset class issues & trends were identified, addressed and resolved. No such forum exists today and it is sorely needed!

• Periodic 1 ½ day long, small FOCUS Groups, convened on-site in land lease communities around the U.S., adhered to set agendas agreed upon in advance by all participants. Practices and procedures spawned therein continue in effect to this day.

• National State of the Asset Class (‘NSAC’) meetings during 2008 & 2009, where industry & realty asset class survival was on everyone’s mind. It’s where Randy Rowe first described Five Action Areas, and the Community Series Homes concept was birthed.

Unfortunately, general mass gatherings like MHI’s annual MHCongress and seasonal Leadership Forums, along with the Networking Roundtable and regional manufactured housing trade shows and exhibits (e.g. SECO, Louisville, & Tunica) simply don’t fill this strategic need. Why? There’s far too much diversity among participants – as there will always be at such venues.

No, what’s needed is far more specific. Specifically, 1 ½ days long FOCUS Group-like gatherings, limited to one or two dozen land lease community owners or senior executives participating, with everyone agreeing ahead of time, what topics are of utmost importance now and going forward. Ideally these gatherings, in my opinion – and when convenient, should be held on-site within land lease communities. Doing so, encourages the ambiance of the physical setting to influence the discussion and resolution of industry and realty asset class matters at hand.

Recently floated ‘the general idea’ described in the previous paragraphs, to two dozen land lease community owners/operators whose business reputations and views I respect. Response? So far, a half dozen thoughtful replies, all in support of the idea of ‘raising the performance bar among property owners, for homeowners/site lessees living in their properties’. Does this describe your vision and goal for your property or properties?

Going forward. If YOU would like to be part of this heady discussion – and help plan
1 ½ days FOCUS Group-like gatherings, let me know via email: gfa7156@aol.com or via Official MHIndustry HOTLINE: (877) MFD-HSNG or 633-4764. I’m especially interested in hearing from those who’ve attended past ULI/MHCC meetings and FOCUS Group sessions. Also those who’ve participated in similar ‘shared performance & experience’ forums in other industries.

End Note.

1. FYI. It’s possible for you to access this 500+/- name list, by direct mail via EducateMHC. For more information, phone the Official MHIndustry HOTLINE: (877)MFD-HSNG or 633-4764. It’s an excellent means for prospecting for land lease community acquisitions.

IV.

GET YOUR ACTS TOGETHER!

If you’re reading this, and are a member of the Manufactured Housing Institute (‘’MHI’) – as I am proudly, its’ sole Emeritus member; or the Manufactured Housing Association for Regulatory Reform (‘MHARR’) – as I am not, because I’m not a HUD-Code housing manufacturer, then you received a digital communique this past week ballyhooing that national trade advocate’s efforts influencing HUD to rescind an earlier policy on garages relative to manufactured homes.

Well, that NEWS was certainly a Welcome development, but it begs this question:

When there are opportunities like this, to present a united front not only to legislators and regulators in our nation’s capitol, but to manufactured housing and land lease community businessmen and women nationwide, WHY are these two organizations not doing so today – or ever?

Not a new or novel question. Lack of industry unity has plagued us for decades!

So, where does a unity solution begin? With you and me, as members of either or both MHI & MHARR, as well as the National Association of Manufactured Housing Community Owners (‘NAMHCO’). Next time you talk to Dick, Mark, or Susan – tell them you prefer they ‘work & announce’ together rather than ‘separately & weakly’! Seriously. When they receive sufficient feedback from members, like thee and me, they’ll eventually ‘get the point’ and figure out how to move forward in a unified, and far more effective fashion, than is the case today!

Nuff said. Unless you want to share your views with me via gfa7156@aol.com

***

George Allen, CPM, MHM
EducateMHC
Box # 47024
Indianapolis, IN. 46247
(317) 346-7156

Best of Times & Worst of Times

Thursday, May 16th, 2019

Blog # 533 @ 14 May 2019; Copyright 2019; www.educatemhc.com

Perspective. ‘Land lease communities, previously manufactured home communities, and earlier, ‘mobile home parks’, comprise the real estate component of manufactured housing

This blog posting is sole national advocate, official ombudsman, historian, research reporter, education resource & online communication media for North American land lease communities

To input this blog, &/or affiliate with EducateMHC, formerly Community Owners (7 Part) Business Alliance, or COBA7, use Official MHIndustry HOHTLINE: (877) MFD-HSNG or 633-4764

Motto: ‘U Support US & WE Serve U!’ Online media goal? Inform, opine, transform & improve manufactured housing & land lease community lifestyle! Visit www.eduatemhc.com

INTRODUCTION: They to run in pairs, questions businessmen & women in manufactured housing & land lease communities ask from time to time. Today, the most frequent ones are:

• What’s with private equity firms overpaying for land lease communities, then greatly jacking rental homesite rates? Will there be a day of reckoning when they realize homeowners/site lessees will no longer put up with greed devaluing of their manufactured homes, and simply ‘walk away’?

• OK, I really like being fully informed about the, in this dual case, ‘industry & realty asset class’ in and with which I – and our firm, are invested and involved. What should I be reading each week, month, and quarter, to stay fully informed?

I

Best of Times & Worst of Times.

Land Lease Communities (a.k.a. manufactured home communities) in the Spotlight of Investor Interest, Homeowner/site lessee Concern, & Landlord/Tenant Legislation

From coast to coast; starting in the Pacific Northwest, via upper Midwest, and through to New York state, land lease community matters are the focus of much attention these days. How so? Here’s a sampling of contemporary attention-getters:

• It’s a historically extravagant Sellers’ Market among institutional investment grade land lease communities nationwide – with no immediate end in sight!

• When overvalued land lease communities ‘sell’, expect inordinate rental homesite rate increases to soon follow! Likewise, no immediate end in sight to this practice either.

• Unintended consequences, or not, of mostly out-of-state acquisitions of these unique, income-producing properties, plus the continuing and elusive search for chattel capital pursuant to on-site sale of new HUD-Code manufactured housing, have precipitated an uptick in regulatory legislation and the enforcement thereof….

During 40 years as an owner/operator of land lease communities, I’ve not seen a more exaggerated Sellers’ Market than the one playing-out today. Gone, for now anyway, are the days when an ‘average’ (i.e. 10 percent income capitalization rate) 100% occupied land lease community sold for say $14,000 per rental homesite (e.g. New Rule of 72: 200 sites X $200/month rent X 72 = $2,880,000 divided by 200 sites = $14,400/site).*1 Today, expect the same investment property to sell for multiples of the $14,400 per rental homesite! For example: 3 X $14,400 = 43,200/site X 200 sites = $8,640,000.00. Yes, that’s where we are today.

Why? Here’re ’10 Good Reasons to Own a Land Lease Community’. These are quoted from page # 151 of SWAN SONG, the first published history of the realty asset class, & official record of MH shipments from 1955 to the present day.*2

1. Relative scarcity! Due to land use regulations, i.e. NIMBY, LULU, BANANA*3
2. Low annual (home & tenant) turnover @ 5 & 10% respectively!
3. Stable, competitive site rent! (When in 3:1 sync in local housing market.*4
4. Lower operating expense ratio (OER @ 40+/-%) than apartment communities
5. Economy of scale! (100+ sites = institutional investment grade properties)
6. Affordable home ownership & equity, when monthly PITI & site rent align
7. Recession proof! No other more economically-priced housing in U.S. today!
8. More opportunities to ‘add value’ via home sales, rental units, parts & services
9. More versatility! Up to seven types of shelter now sited therein.*5
10. Opportunity to serve society by providing truly affordable housing!

Then, all too often these days, comes the inordinate rental homesite rate increase, especially when the just-acquired land lease community has been charging a ‘below market’ rate before the ‘closing’ of the transaction.

And because the new, often out-of-state, and frequently private equity investor has overvalued said land lease community to motivate seller to sell, a significantly increased income stream, to pay for operating expenses and new debt service, has to come from ‘somewhere’; that somewhere being from homeowners/site lessees already in place. Sometimes the buyer pressures the seller to raise site rents before ‘closing’ occurs, and sometimes the seller refuses, leaving the task for the buyer. In any event, the management and tenant environment changes. Not only that, if on-site salaried management has been in place for a decade or longer, expect an immediate significant $ savings to be made in administrative labor cost, as they are replaced.

It seems attempts to regulate rent rate adjustments and loan financing among land lease communities is all the rage these days, as social activist organizations seek remedies to what they view as injustices foisted on land lease community homeowner/site lessees.

With all that said, what’s the most frequent question I’m asked these days?

When will the next Great Shakeout occur throughout the land lease community realty asset class? I don’t know, but a review of past ‘shakeouts’ provides hints as to a reasonable answer:

• Mid-1970s. Remember 1973, when 579,940+/- new ‘mobile homes’ were shipped nationwide?*6 Well, for good reason(s), the industry became federally regulated via HUD-Code enacted in 1974 and implemented in 1976. Results? Shipments plunged to 221,091+/- new manufactured homes by year 1980! Another immediate consequence? Tens of thousands of new ‘mobile home parks’ were developed during that time frame; but the source of new homes was effectively halved. So, thousands of newly developed, partially-filled mobile home parks went into foreclosure, not fully recovering until the late 1980s and early 1990s, during resolution of the…

• Savings & Loan Crisis of 1980s. Between 1989 & 1995, the Resolution Trust Corporation (‘RTC’) a federal government entity, sold the realty assets of 747 thrifts – including many many mobile home parks cum manufactured home communities. These ‘pennies on the dollar’ acquisitions – often by limited partnerships, followed by a major federal tax law change in 1986, effectively prepared the way for a…

• Mini REIT Wave of 1994, that continues to this day, via ELS, Inc., Sun Communities, Inc., & UMH Properties, Inc. REIT holdings have grown substantially, from 88,450 rental homesites during 1994, to 300,566 sites by year end 2018!*7

• Turn of the Century Shakeout & Paradigm Shift. Began with a short renascence of 372,943 new HUD-Code homes shipped during 1998, followed by industry’s loss of easy access to chattel capital – for on-site loans on new HUD-Code homes installed in land lease communities, plummeting to only 49,789+/- homes shipped during 2009. Results? 300,000+/- repossessed manufactured homes, loss of 10,000+/- independent (street) MHRetailers, & realization that land lease communities, to survive and thrive, must buy new homes (i.e. Community Series Homes & other models) directly from factories, sell, and often seller-finance them on-site.*8 This paradigm shift continues to this day.

So, with all that said, what might we expect to occur going forward into years 2019 & 2020?

Right now, your GUESS is as good as mine. Already I hear sounds (reports) of structural weakness and strain as some hired guns (high salaried, but not PM credentialed executives) struggle with the basics and nuances of new HUD-Code housing installation, marketing & sales, as well as recource-secure seller-financing. So watch and listen carefully going forward!

End Notes.

1. For those unfamiliar with the New Rule of 72; the $2,880,000 capitalized income valuation is the same as one computes using the ‘long hand method’ as follows: 200 sites X $200/month site rent X 12 months X .6 (reciprocal of 40% Allen Model OER for land lease communities), divided by .1 (i.e. 10% cap rate) = $2,880,000.

2. SWAN SONG available for purchase via www.educatemhc.com

3. 3:1 Rule: 3BR2B apartment rent = $900/month? Then LLCommunity = $300+/-month

4. ‘Not in my back yard!’ & ‘Locally Unwanted Land Use!’ & ‘Build Absolutely Nothing Anywhere Near Anyone!’

5. Pre-1976 ‘mobile homes’, post-1976 manufactured homes, modular homes, ‘park model RVs’, RVs for a season, stick-built homes fabricated on site to imitate manufactured homes, & of late, Tiny Houses.

6. ‘+/-‘ notation after most annual MH shipment volume totals. Once again the necessity of having to explain something that should not occur. HUD’s contractor, the Institute for Building Technology & Safety (‘IBTS’) publishes monthly shipment volumes of HUD-Code manufactured homes nationwide. These figures are reported, as published by IBTS, by HUD, MHARR, NAMHCO, & EducateMHC. Only MHI deletes the number of DESTINATION PENDING units one month and adds them back the following month, ‘changing’ the monthly total reported by HUD’s contractor.

7. 30th annual ALLEN REPORT, a.k.a. ‘Who’s Who Among Land Lease Community Portfolio Owners/operators Located Throughout North America!’ Available only via www.educatemhc.com

8. Community Series Home (design) agreed upon by HUD-Code manufacturers and land lease community owners/operators on 28 February 2009 during a MHInitiative ‘think tank’ gathering at the RV/MH Hall of Fame in Elkhart, IN. CSH models are generally singlesection, or modest-sized multisection in configuration, have pitched/shingled roof systems, a front end porch, and durability-enhancing features intended to speed and control costs of ‘make ready’ between homeowners and or unit renters.

II.

Eight Key Steps to being Fully Informed!

No big mystery here. If you’re into manufactured housing & land lease communities as an executive, manager, investor, the first four of the following eight bullet point highlighted trade publications are nothing short of being MUST READS. The fifth bullet point identifies the sole, relatively high-priced media focused on strategic and timely information needs of the top execs throughout the industry and realty asset class. And bullet points # 6, 7, & 8 are the proverbial ‘icing on the cake’ periodic Press Releases and news alerts distributed digitally by the Manufactured Housing Institute (‘MHI’), Manufactured Housing Association for Regulatory Reform (‘MHARR’), and National Association of Manufactured Housing Community Owners (‘NAMHCO’)

WEEKLY

• FREE blog posting (the one you’re reading NOW) for anyone in manufactured housing & land lease community ownership/operations. Simply access www.educatemhc.com and request to be put on the distribution list. It’s that simple and accessible to YOU.

MONTHLY

• Allen Letter. A digital publication, distributed continually since 1989, is the oldest trade media serving, primarily, land lease community owners/operators throughout the U.S. & Canada. HUD-Code housing manufacturers subscribe to stay abreast of what’s happening within the fastest growing market for their unique, factory-built housing product. Cost? Only $135.95/year for 12 monthly issues. To subscribe, visit www.educatemhc.com

QUARTERLY

• MHInsider. While the newest national MHIndustry trade publication, already into its’ second year, it has already eclipsed the coverage and presence of the magazine and tabloid it replaced: Manufactured Home Merchandiser and The Journal. Themed to showcase whatever regional or national trade show event is occurring during said quarter, the magazine also contains features by a plethora of writers, along with an Allen Legacy column in each issue. To subscribe, visit www.mhvillage.com

• Manufactured Housing Review. This online e-zine has set a new and higher standard for news coverage online than what existed beforehand! Buttressed by a stable of industry writers, covering specialty topics, the publication has made itself a ‘must read’ experience. To subscribe, visit www.manufacturedhousingreview.com

SPECIALTY PUBLICATION

• The Allen CONFIDENTIAL! Digital business newsletter has been serving the manufactured housing industry for more than a decade, in large part tracing the unfolding of the ongoing paradigm shift reshaping manufactured housing distribution since the turn of the century. It’s most well-known for the ‘advance news’ it shares confidentially with subscribers, facilitating strategic business decisions that otherwise would have been made with less guidance. To subscribe, visit www.educatemhc.com Cost? $544.95/year for 12 monthly issues

OTHER NEWS RESOURCES.

• MHI. Visit www.mhi.org

• MHARR. Visit www.mhar.org

• NAMHCO. Visit

So, are YOU presently ‘fully informed’, or about to become fully informed, as you take steps to read this blog weekly, the Allen Letter monthly, MHInsider and Manufactured Housing Review quarterly, and Press Releases and news alerts from MHI, MHARR, & NAMHCO? And don’t forget the Allen CONFIDENTIAL! This is the ‘sleeper’ of the eight resources designed to position you successfully as you make key business decisions.

III.

Still Making Up My Mind…

To identify or not, elected leaders (board members) of MHI, MHARR, & NAMHCO.

Recently, Mark Weiss, president of MHARR, in a treatise titled: ‘Lead, Follow…or Get Out of the Way’, told how his board has decided to ‘take the bull by the horns’ to launch a new post-production national advocacy entity to represent interests of these segments of the manufactured housing industry. At the time, I suggested MHARR’s ‘not identifying’ board members by name, was a major flaw in the plan. After-all, who’d you rather follow? The leader(s) you know or ones you don’t know? Well, I’m ‘working’ on the matter, relative to all three bodies: MHI, MHARR, & NAMHCO. So keep reading this blog to ‘stay informed’. Also…

If you’d like to do your own ‘leadership research’, visit www.guidestar.org to review, for a price, the #990 tax forms, to learn the names of association board of director members.

Your Responses to Blog Posting # 531’s…

Tuesday, May 7th, 2019

7 May 2019; www.educatemhc.com

Perspective. ‘Land lease communities, previously manufactured home communities, and earlier, ‘mobile home parks’, comprise the real estate component of manufactured housing.’

This blog posting is sole national advocate, official ombudsman, historian, research reporter, education resource & online communication media for North American land lease communities

To input this blog, &/or affiliate with EducateMHC, formerly Community Owners (7 Part) Business Alliance, or COBA7, use Official MHIndustry HOTLINE: (877) MFD-HSNG or 633-4764

Motto: ‘U Support US & WE Serve U!’ Online media goal? Inform, opine, transform & improve manufactured housing & land lease community lifestyle! Visit www.educatemhc.com

I.

Your Responses to Blog Posting # 531’s

Rejoinder to MHARR’s ‘Lead, Follow…or Get Out of the Way’

I hardly hit the SEND button, getting blog # 531 on its’ way, before we started receiving responses continuing well into the following week. And the comments have been interesting, thought-provoking, confirming. Here’re three response categories we’ll cover here: blog # 532

• Blog # 531 missed the ‘elephant in the room’! The next change, and potential trend setter, for the manufactured housing industry! Know what it is? Read on…

• Thanks to an industry colleague, I now know who MHARR board members were at year end 2017. Have asked MHARR to confirm contemporary accuracy of list; but to date, no response. Not surprised. Remember; these are the ‘take the bull by the horn’ leaders few people know. I recognized barely half the names on the list I received.

• Actionable Items. One blog reader didn’t feel I went far enough encouraging attendees at MHI’s MHCongress in New Orleans, to force discussion of key, timely industry issues during that venue. Then at MHI’s Washington, DC fly-in on 3 June; and again, at an MHAlive Think Tank gathering on 5 August at the RV/MH Hall of Fame in Elkhart, IN.

So, let’s begin anew, and in more detail.

The ‘elephant in the room’ = “…imminent departure of Dick Jennison” – MHI’s top salaried executive. Why ‘so described’? Because this is our (meaning ‘thee & me’, if an MHI member) first opportunity in nearly a decade, to persuade-pressure-petition the institute’s board members in general, the selection committee in particular – for the first time ever – to hire a STRATEGIC THINKER for us to follow, leading our industry back to prosperity! Have you read or heard anyone else encouraging such thinking & action on this matter? Neither have I! This industry observer has endured no fewer than six, in my opinion, milquetoast leaders since 1978! NOW we have an opportunity for positive, forthright change! Let’s prepare for it! Let’s experience it! We deserve the BEST available! OR, will we squander the opportunity – again?

More on the elephant. One commentator, relative to this MHJI succession matter, suggests each job applicant ‘…write a paper describing their view of the industry’s future. Let the finalists’ papers, without attribution, be widely circulated, with comments directed back to the selection committee’ – before they make a final decision. Agreed! And said papers could easily be published in MHInsider magazine, Manufactured Housing Review, and the Allen Letter.

MHARR board members. Still researching this, striving to ‘fill in the blanks’, putting corporate identities next to names of 16 board members and Mark Weiss. In my opinion, if MHARR truly believes in a need for improved national advocacy among post-production segments of the manufactured housing industry, they should step forward and clearly identify themselves as leaders of said effort, rather than be publicly identified in some other fashion. Agree?

Actionable Items. Well, MHARR to its’ credit has fired off a worthy ‘first volley’ to this end, given their ‘Call on HUD Secretary to End Discriminatory & Exclusionary Zoning of HUD-regulated Manufactured Homes’ (4/30/2019 Press Release). Hey, correct me if I’m wrong, but wouldn’t’ that headline have been more effective if the word ‘against’ had been used instead of ‘of’ in front of ‘HUD-regulated…’? After all, ‘discriminatory & exclusionary zoning’ are typical, widespread ‘local regulatory barriers to all forms of affordable housing’. And the time has come to set them aside. to increase the supply of affordable housing where needed = everywhere!

There are certainly other actionable items germane to getting the HUD-Coded manufactured housing industry back on its’ 100,000 units/year shipment pace. What steps are YOU taking to this end? The inquiring weekly blog postings at www.educatemhc.com would like to know! Also via gfa7156@aol.com

II.

Affordable Housing Battles

Everyone’s heard of the discriminatory & exclusionary zoning abbreviation NIMBY (‘Not In My Back Yard!’), but how ‘bout LULU & BANANA? The former = ‘Locally Unwanted Land Use’), the latter = ‘Build Absolutely Nothing Anywhere Near Anyone!’

Well, guess what, there’s a new anti-discriminatory & exclusionary zoning abbreviation ‘in town’, so to speak. It’s YIMBY, and the letters stand for ‘YES, In My Back Yard!’ it’s OK to build affordable housing! It’s the enlightened mantra land use planners and zoning regulation reformers use to “clear away the regulatory barriers and let developers build more housing”, figuring “the laws of supply and demand will take over…and (housing) prices will go down.” But all is not well with YIMBY these days. According to Land Lines magazine, “zoning changes…only accelerate gentrification and displacement – disproportionately harming low-income families and communities of color.” Where does that leave YIMBY? Guess we’ll just have to watch and see.

Then there’s the contemporary notion, “When it comes to the income of those who deserve a government handout, how high is too high?” Thinking about public safety employees (firemen & police officers) and those in the medical support fields (nurses & technicians) here. Critics of this refocus on affordable housing for the middle (working) class, claim it risks redirecting scarce $ resources away from citizens with little to no income….” And with this, come claims of ‘political showmanship’, where a section of the local population who votes at higher rates, is maybe viewed more sympathetically – and supportively, than those living in poverty or are homeless. Comments in this paragraph edited from the Washington Post.

Do you see how affordable housing is demanding more and more attention these days? Well, if you want to learn more, and become involved in helping resolve this perennial national crisis (i.e. shortage of affordable housing), plan to be present the morning of 9 September, 2019, at The Alexander Hotel in Indianapolis, IN. This is the occasion of the 28th annual Networking Roundtable, planned and hosted by EducateMHC. U.S. Senator Todd Young will be keynote presenter that morning. He heads a nine senator task force on affordable housing, and being from Indiana, is in the midst of a vibrant Midwest manufactured housing industry. For more information, visit www.educatemhc.com or phone the Official MHIndustry HOTLINE: (877) MFD-HSNG or 633-4764.

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