Archive for December, 2016

ALLEN REPORT gems; 5 NEW YEAR Resolutions; & ‘PRETNEDER to SUPERHERO’?

Friday, December 30th, 2016

Blog # 427 Copyright 2017 COBA7 @ 1 January 2017; community-investor.com

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

This blog posting is the sole national advocate voice, official ombudsman & historian, research report & online communication media for North American LLCommunities!

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

COBA7 Motto: ‘U Support US & WE serve U! Goal of its’ print/online media = to ‘Not only inform & opine, but to transform & improve MHBusiness model performance!’
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INTRODUCTION: Start 2017 off right! How?

1. With your copy of 28th annual ALLEN REPORT in hand;

2. Five pithy NEW YEAR RESOLUTIONS in mind for corporate implementation;

3. All three national advocates (i.e. MHARR, MHI, & COBA7) admonished to ‘double down’ on lobbying & regulatory reform in behalf of the manufactured housing industry and land-lease communities, large & small, nationwide!

I.

28th annual ALLEN REPORT
a.k.a.
‘Who’s Who Among LLCommunity Portfolio Owners/operators Throughout North America!’

Do you know? COBA7 prints more than 1,000 copies of the seminal ALLEN REPORT each year for three reasons:

• It’s, by far, the most comprehensive, fact-filled retrospective, statistical compendium, and trend tracker published annually, describing what goes on among 50,000+/- land-lease communities, and 500+/- portfolio owners/operators nationwide and throughout Canada! Therefore, it is always in high demand.

• To satisfy the need, by Community Owners (7 Part) Business Alliance affiliates (Option II & III levels), for this first of a dozen+ updated Signature Series Resource Documents (’SSRDs’) they’ll receive monthly throughout the year.

• Pristine copies of the ALLEN REPORT are routinely ordered by university & business libraries throughout North America, in addition to the RV/M Hall of Fame library in Elkhart, IN., Library of Congress & National Building Museum libraries in Washington, DC., to name a few repositories of research source data.

What’s contained in the 28th annual ALLEN REPORT? Here’re just ten highlights:

• Year 2016 historical MH retrospective available nowhere else at any price!
• Contemporary statistical primer for land-lease communities in North America.
• Identification of the Top Ten property portfolios in the U.S. & Canada
• State presence, occupancy rates & OERs among 122 LLCommunity portfolios
• This year’s ‘Pride of Young Lions’ identified. Be prepared to be surprised!
• Two DATACOMP references: market rent surveys & # LLCommunities per state
• Exclusive ‘40 Year History of HUD & MHIndustry Partnership’. Nowhere else!
• REIT History (1994 – 2016) in terms of total rental homesite count, year by year
• 122 land-lease community portfolio firms ranked per total rental homesite counts
• Major $ Sponsors of 25th anniversary Networking Roundtable, September 2016.

To order your copy of the 28th ALLEN REPORT, simply phone the Official MHIndustry HOTLINE: (877) MFD-HSNG or 633-4764. Price? COBA7 Option II @ $544.95/year.

II.

FIVE NEW YEAR RESOLUTIONS FOR THE MANUFACTURED HOUSING INDUSTRY

These New Year (2017) Resolutions were featured in the January 2017 issue of the Allen CONFIDENTIAL! business newsletter:

• Support the new President of the United States of America!

• HUD-Code housing manufacturers to redouble efforts marketing and selling new homes into land-lease communities, large and small, coast-to-coast! (This is the sole focus of a 9AM-Noon $95. seminar, for HUD-Code home manufacturers, on 17 January at the Crowne Plaza Hotel in Louisville, KY…the day before the Louisville MHShow begins. For information & to register: (317) 346-7156.

• Land-lease community owners/operators to NOT heed the siren call to ‘double one’s rental homesite rates’ during 2017! But rather, assure fair & affordable housing propositions to homebuyer/site lessees, keeping combined monthly PITI mortgage & site rent payments total, at or below the National Average Affordable Housing Market Rent of $849.00/unit – including household expenses (i.e. utilities) where possible. This will not work in some high-priced local housing markets. For more info on this pithy topic, phone (317) 346-7156 & request a FREE copy of the ‘Tipping Point’ WHITE PAPER Expose’. It tells all!

• Emphasize importance of – and provide for, opportunities to receive professional property management (’PM’) training and certification among all land-lease community managers and owners! Everyone to be a Certified Property Manager (’CPM’), Accredited Community Manager (’ACM’), or Manufactured Housing Manager. An MHM training & certification opportunity occurs at Crowne Plaza Hotel, on 17 January, in Louisville, KY. Cost? $250.00/MHM candidate. No tests. And again, on 11 April in Albany, NY. Interested? Phone (317) 346-7156 ASAP.

• Support one or more national advocacy entities, e.g. MHARR, MHI, & COBA7, that best represents ones’ business interests as housing manufacturer, land-lease community owner/operator, or other post-production segment of the industry. For MHARR, phone (202) 783-4087; for MHI, phone (703)558-0400; and for COBA7, (317) 346-7156. Decide WHO will lobby for YOU during 2017!

Yes, year 2017 will have its’ array of challenges and opportunities, not to mention threats and rough patches; but let’s pull together on all five of these New Year Resolutions, enabling our industry and realty asset class to return to financial prosperity and improved public image – as this nation’s primary provider of truly affordable housing & lifestyle!

III.

FROM PRETENDER TO SUPERHERO?

‘What the Manufactured Housing Institute (’MHI’) must do if it’s truly
“REPRESENTING THE FACTORY-BUILT HOUSING INDUSTRY’
per the bold and sweeping website (manufacturedhousing.org) claim.’

(If you haven’t read last week’s blog posting #426, on this highly controversial topic, stop here & do so, by scrolling back through the blog archive at community-investor.com)

For starters, reach out and bring the Building Systems Council (’BSC’) of the National Association of Homebuilders (’NAHB’) into MHI’s Factory-built Housing fold. Reach them in Washington, DC., via www.nahb.org Why? Because that’s where panelizers (50% national factory-built housing market share) and production site builders (39% market share) presently call home! Once that’s accomplished, contact…

Modular Homebuilder’s Association (’MHBA’) located in Charlottesville, VA. (www.modularhousing.com) and invite their residential factory-built housing manufacturers to ‘come on board’ the MHI train.

And finally, to be truly inclusive, solicit the cooperation of the Modular Building Institute, also (same address) in Charlottesville, VA. This entity is an associate member of aforementioned BSC/NAHB, and counts as members, “…companies in manufacturing and distribution of non-residential commercial, factory-built structures”…with a few members also fabricating residential structures, e.g. Clayton Homes.

Plus, there are other trade groups ‘out there’ who claim the same new national advocacy territory as MHI, e.g. the National Association of Factory-built Home Builders. Interestingly, in addition to the four types of factory-built housing already identified (i.e. panelizers (50% market share), production site builders (39%), manufactured housing (5%) & modular housing (5%), the NAFHB adds pre-cut homes (e.g. kit, log & dome homes) to the mix. We’ll stop here and not even go down the road to pre-fab or prefabricated homes….

Now, in case you didn’t realize it, MHI does have a longstanding, albeit very small one, presence representing modular housing (i.e. 5+/-% of the national factory-built housing market share), labeled as the National Modular Housing Council (’NMHC’) of MHI.

This NMHC presence, along with MHI’s 5+/-% HUD-Code manufactured housing national market share, combined, accounts for the 10 percent national market share MHI presently enjoys among factory-built housing fabricators.

Unanswered questions going a-begging: 1) ‘Where and how will panelizers & production site builders fit into the MHI membership milieu?’ And 2) ‘Why does MHI even want to take on this tenfold expansion of its’ national advocacy role, when there’s so much yet to be accomplished (e.g. Return of easy access to chattel capital for new home financing on-site in LLCommunities) in behalf of its’ present membership?’ Answers anyone?

Once these ‘membership-recruiting steps and representation questions’ have been accomplished and answered, MHI will be on its’ way to the presumed goal of REPRESENTING THE FACTORY-BUILT HOUSING INDUSTRY.

Know what’d be simpler, and certainly more helpful to present MHI members? If MHI would narrow its’ focus and concentrate on lobbying and promoting regulatory reform in behalf of the manufactured housing industry! Nothing more, nothing less!

What’s Going On With MHI? More on FHFA, DTS & GSEs…

Friday, December 23rd, 2016

Blog # 426 Copyright 2016 COBA7 @ 25 December 2016; community-investor.com

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

This blog posting is the sole national advocate voice, official ombudsman & historian, research report & online communication media for North American LLCommunities.’

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

COBA7 Motto: ‘U Support US & WE Serve U!’ Goal of its’ print/online media = to ‘Not only inform & opine, but to transform & improve MHBusiness model performance!’

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INTRODUCTION: Have you noticed? Ever since COBA7 was founded in early 2014, MHI has redoubled its’ membership recruiting efforts (That’s a good thing); hired more staff (To what end? Little to no change in services); and now lays fallacious claim to more housing representation than warranted. Why? Maybe out of fear of losing ground to the other two national advocates for manufactured housing in general, land-lease communities in particular.

Why not be content with being primary LOBBYIST for HUD-Code home manufacturers, already controlling more than 85 percent of manufactured housing national market share? Encourage MHARR to continue to OPPOSE INCREASED REGULATION of smaller, regional home manufacturers! And, leave COBA7 to focus on PRODUCTS & SERVICES, such as statistical research & reporting, information sharing, print & online communication, interpersonal networking & realty deal-making, as well as professional property management training & certification of LLCommunity owners/operators throughout North America?

Perhaps year 2017 will come to be viewed as the ’shakeup year’, when national advocate identities are established, foci identified and prioritized, to the greater good of the industry and its associated realty asset class!

Here’re additional details…

I.

What’s Going On With MHI?

This, directly from the Manufactured Housing Institute’s (’MHI’) rejuvenated website:www.manufacturedhousing.org

“MHI – REPRESENTING THE FACTORY-BUILT HOUSING INDUSTRY”

When one accesses the ‘Who We Are’ prompt, there’s this misleading message: “The factory built housing industry produces about 70,000 homes a year and contributes about $2.6 billion to the U.S. economy.” NOT. That’s just the number, and production value, of new HUD-Code homes shipped annually (i.e. 70,544 during year 2015) – and not inclusive of three other types of factory-built housing; all four of which are described here:

• Panelizers. Command 50 percent of national (new housing) market share. These builders use factory-fabricated ’sheathed external & open interior’ wall panels when building new homes on-site

• Production site builders. Garner 39 percent of national market share. These are the site builders who routinely use factory-built components (e.g. pre-hung windows & doors; floor & ceiling trusses, & more) when building new homes.

• HUD-Code manufactured housing accounts for roughly five percent of national market share, where this type factory-built housing is concerned. And…

• Modular housing accounts for another five percent of national market share where this unique type factory-built housing (i.e. using modules) is concerned.

This is bold overreach on the part of MHI, claiming it represents ALL factory-built housing; when in reality, it might claim just 10 percent of the national (new housing) market share; 10 percent comprised near equally of HUD-Code and modular homes.

Perhaps this of overly broad boast is indicative of an emerging, albeit unfortunate, self-centered mindset at the institute. How so? As you read Part II (following here), listing the plethora of recent Press Releases, blog postings, and commentaries describing ‘FHFA’s DTS Rulemaking & GSEs’, pay close attention to quoted content from MHI’s HOUSING ALERT, dated 19 December 2016. It’ll likely surprise, if not shock, you.

II.

More on FHFA/s DTS Rulemaking & GSEs

In just seven days, including one weekend, no fewer than eight public pronouncements!

12/13 = MHI’s Press Release, couched as a HOUSING ALERT, on this timely topic.

12/14 = MHARR’s Press Release. In our opinion, an apt counterpoint to MHI’s alert.

12/14 = Six pre-Webinar Questions posed to FHFA by Ken Rishel of Rishel Consulting

12/16 = FMHA Memorandum summarizing DTS Rulemaking information to date…

12/18 = Blog Posting # 425 @ community-investor.com, summarizing and comparing published views of three national manufactured housing advocates: MHI, MHARR, & COBA7.

12/19 = FHFA receives business model summary from a land-lease community portfolio owner/operator, describing 60 new HUD-Code homes financed within four properties, during the past decade, with only four defaults. Secret to Success? “Every one of (the) buyers/borrowers was qualified, based on their 10-15% down payment, rental history, and strict adherence to minimum front and back end debt-to-income ratios.”

12/19 = MHI’s HOUSING ALERT. Summarizes its’ earlier Press Release of 12/13, and from all appearances, takes full credit for the recent DTS rulemaking progress – wholly ignoring contributions by other manufactured housing national advocates attending same FHFA’s public meeting, and their respective submissions of comment letters. Lest you think we exaggerate:

• “The final rule is the culmination of a multi-year effort by MHI to educate Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, and FHFA on the fundamentals of the manufactured housing finance market….” No one else advised FHFA on these matters? Several did!

• MHI efforts included the following: “Extensive discussions with consumer groups initially hostile to manufactured housing loans…but in press reports are now being referred to as ‘advocates’ for chattel lending.” How ’bout MHARR’s meetings with consumer group leaders? And COBA7’s affiliate ROCs*1?

• MHI again, “Participating in working groups with the GSEs, to educate them about chattel loan operations issues….” MHARR & COBA7 also participated.

• MHI and again, “Submitting an extensive comment letter that rebutted concerns about the risk of chattel loans…&…made an aggressive argument for a stronger duty to serve rule.” One among more than a thousand such comment letters…..

12/19 = Web Conference re Duty to Serve. More than 120 individuals participated in this hour long conference. Rulemaking, as it applied to the three underserved markets (i.e. manufactured housing, affordable housing, rural housing) was presented at length. This webinar to be followed by three Listening Programs, sponsored by FHFA; in Chicago on 25 January; Washington, DC., on 8 February, and in San Francisco, CA. For more information and to register, visit www.fhfa.gov/dts

Yes, it’s truly been a hectic and exciting week, since the FHFA (that’s short for Federal Housing Finance Agency) announced, 13 December 2016, that ‘GSEs Will Receive Duty to Serve Credit for Manufactured Housing Chattel Loans’. And yes, there’s much work to be done, as GSEs now select and assemble the ‘nuts & bolts’ of the chattel capital programs to serve manufactured housing in land-lease communities throughout the U.S.

But, you know what would HELP a LOT going FORWARD? If the three national manufactured housing advocates, i.e. MHI, MHARR, & COBA7, would ‘work together’ to influence and assist FHFA and GSEs in this timely and important task of converting policy into procedure – instead of grandstanding separately. Will it happen? Only if YOU, as a member of one or more of these entities, suggest – no, insist, they do so for your business benefit and theirs! Your request falls on deaf ears? Then perhaps it’s time to align with another of the national advocates – for the greater good of the manufactured housing industry! Think about it. How many other times will such a challenge and opportunity be presented to us? Let’s not squander this means to positively influence our collective business future!

If you’d like to make your opinions known on this heady topic, i.e. access to chattel capital for manufactured housing sited within land-lease communities, write gfa7156@aol.com and let us know soon! GFA

End Note.

1. ROC = resident-owned communities via ROC USA.

***

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

FHFA = DTS Rules for GSEs; Bold Suggestion; 17 January Opportunities, & More!

Friday, December 16th, 2016

Blog # 425 Copyright 2016 COBA7 @ 18 December 2016; community-investor.com

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

This blog posting is the sole national advocacy voice, official ombudsman & historian, research report & online communication media for North American LLCommunities.’

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

COBA7 Motto: ‘U Support US & WE Serve U!’ Goal of its’ print/online media = to ‘Not only inform & opine, but to transform & improve MHBusiness model performance!’

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INTRODUCTION: Today’s blog content?

Exciting NEWS about FHFA, DTS, & GSEs!

Then a bold & smart SUGGESTION for large LLCommunity portfolio owners/operators.

At least five EVENTS to make this year’s Louisville MHShow ‘the best ever’ for YOU!

A minor correction to COBA7’s Official MHShipment ‘#s & $’ Report for October 2016.

I.

FHFA Finalizes Duty to Serve (’DTS’) Rule

(to provide DTS credit, to Fannie Mae & Freddie Mac, for purchasing chattel capital manufactured housing loans!)

Here’s how the three manufactured housing industry and land-lease community national advocates responded to this historic, and what was intended to be & is, encouraging news:

• “GSEs Will Receive Duty to Serve Credit for Manufactured Housing Chattel Loans” Press Release from the Manufactured Housing Institute (’MHI’)

• “FHFA Final Duty to Serve Rule Continues to Fail Chattel Borrowers” Press Release from the Manufactured Housing Association for Regulatory Reform (’MHARR’)

• Federal Housing Finance Agency (’FHFA’) Issues Guidelines; Government Sponsored Enterprises (’GSEs’) Fannie Mae & Freddie Mac to Now ID Nuts & Bolts to Make the Program Work!” Press Release from the Community Owners (7 Part) Business Alliance (’COBA7′)

There’s certainly more to this story than just these salient headlines. Indication of ‘more work to be done’, comes from MHI chairman Tim Williams, president of 21st Mortgage Corporation, when he states, in MHI’s press release, “I am pleased FHFA is including chattel loans in the DTS framework, in order to encourage Fannie Mae & Freddie Mac to open a wider range of opportunities for aspiring manufactured (home) owners. The bottom line: done right, this could make becoming a manufactured home owner more affordable.” (Lightly edited. GFA)

But just how far is this DTS Rule from being ’shovel ready’ – as a soon to be erstwhile president described federal projects with high expectations but low practicality? At this point we simply don’ t know…

According to MHARR’s press release, The final rule, “…will leave a significant majority of manufactured home purchasers – as they are now – a captive market for the higher-cost loans offered by the finance affiliates of industry’s largest corporate conglomerates. The final DTS rule…offers far less than meets the eye, and should now be addressed and rectified by Congress.” And if that doesn’t arouse your curiosity, this will: “…the final rule represents a ‘bait – and -switch’ scenario. It lists chattel loan support as a permitted activity, but then specifically enables the GSEs to avoid that activity entirely if they wish.” Whoa! Let’s hope ‘that’ does not happen, again.

Where to go from here? Well, fortunately for land-lease community owners/operators, COBA7 has served as a sounding board of sorts, for the FHFA, during 2016. And already they’ve reached out to talk about this matter. So, continue to be updated as to progress, here, and in the Allen Letter professional journal, and the Allen CONFIDENTIAL! And remember, The Journal is no longer being published. But know, MHARR & MHI have been offered white space in the monthly Allen Letter for their views on this and other MHIndustry topics. Will they avail themselves of this public and trade media outlet? Guess we’ll have to wait and see….

In the meantime, and this is a very short fuse opportunity: If YOU want to participate in the FHFA Shareholder Webinar, on Monday, 19 December, at 2PM ET, you need to go, right now, to FHFA.gov/DTS and register! COBA7 affiliates have been informed of this rare and important opportunity to be on the cutting edge of emerging manufactured housing industry finance policy and procedure!

Furthermore, if not already receiving and reading the Allen Letter professional journal each month, do so by contacting COBA7 via the MHIndustry HOTLINE: (877) MFD-HSNG or 633-4764 & affiliate at the Option I level ($134.95/12 months). Also know, the 28th annual ALLEN REPORT, a.k.a. ‘Who’s Who Among Land-lease Community Portfolio Owner/operators Throughout North America!’, will be enclosed with the January 2017 issue of the Allen Letter going to Option II (%44.95/12 months) & III affiliates.

II.

A Bold Suggestion for Property Portfolio Executives

Let’s begin with what comes across as a MHIndustry trivia question; but in reality, is an indicator of a liaison that worked well ‘for decades several decades ago’, but is a near lost art today. The question:

Ever heard the name of Jim Boyts?

Hmm, let’s see. He was inducted into the prestigious RV/MH Heritage Foundation’s Hall of Fame in 2010, several years after he died. How ’bout Skyine Homes? Sure, you should know that firm well, it’s one of our industry’s venerable pioneers. Think industry icons Art Decio & Terry Decio; and now, Richard Florea.

OK, so what’s the big deal about Jim Boyts and Skyline Homes?

Throughout the 1960s, 70s, 80s, & into the 90s, Jim was the firm’s liaison to more than 30 states. His actual title was Director of Marketing Services. Skyline was a member of every state MH association where the company had active business interests. And they purposed to have Jim Boyts as the firm’s representative to every one of those state MH associations. He was, in effect, the manufactured housing industry’s ‘interstate statesman’ until he retired. Why wasn’t the practice continued? Stop and think of the dates, the dawn of the 21st Century, and all the turmoil and ‘economic downturn’ that came with it.

On a personal note, I knew Jim Boyts well. He was, at times, a mentor, devil’s advocate, supporter, and advisor. In my opinion, there hasn’t been anyone like him since he retired. But even then, he stayed in touch, reading my columns in The Journal, the Manufactured Home Merchandiser magazine, even the Allen Letter professional journal.

Point to this recitation? I think it’d serve property (i.e. land-lease community) portfolio owners/operators, and many state MH associations, well, if they, in early 2017, designated one business savvy executive to be their active liaison with said trade bodies wherever the firm has business interests.

Why? Well, as a ‘player’, i.e. association board member, they are a team member, maybe even leader; and no longer viewed as an outlier by other corporate members of said association. Plus, by being active in other state MH associations, they enable cross-pollination of ideas and concerns among states. And the list goes on…

So, at least the 20 largest property portfolio firms should seriously consider this suggestion, as we go into year 2017.

III.

Where Will You be on 17, 18, 19, 20 January 2017?

17 January @ 7AM – 4PM. Manufactured Housing Manager (’MHM’) professional property management training & certification program at the Crowne Plaza Hotel on Phillips Lane in Louisville, KY. Only $250.00/MHM candidate. No testing. Taught by Katie Hauck, MHM, & Kathy Taylor, MHM. Call (317) 346-7156

17 January @ 9AM-Noon. Special Presentation for HUD-Code home manufacturers. Two foci: ‘How to ID land-lease communities, owners, operators, in all four property categories’; &, Open Discussion of How to Best Sell New Homes to LLCommunities.
Facilitated by George Allen, CPM & MHM. Only $95/registrant. Call (317) 346-7156

17 January @ 1PM-4PM. Lease-option Methodology for Land-lease Community Owners/operators Selling & Seller-financing New HUD-Code Homes On-site! Cost? Only $95.00/registrant. Contact genevieve@secoconference.com

18 & 19 January. Louisville MHShow at State Fairgrounds: Google Louisville MHShow to get more information and to register in advance. Start off the ‘MHShow experience’ by attending the 8-9AM panel, ‘How to Buy New Homes at the Louisville MHShow!’ The info shared here could save you $ and make this the best MHShow ever for you….

20 January, 9AM. Presentation & Open Discussion of New HUD-Code Home Installation & Foundations in Frost-susceptible Climates. If you’re confused about this timely and complicated topic, you owe it to yourself to be present! Led by Frank Bowman, executive director of the Illinois Manufactured Housing Association. No cost to this opportunity.

IV.

COBA7 MHShipment ‘#s & $’ @ October 2016

Oops! One minor mistake to the subject document. Geesh! I hate when that happens. No excuses – though it’d be nice to be a large enough firm to employ a fact checker to help.

The error? Using Dr. Stephen C. Cooke’s ‘production value’ formula, the 7,154 new HUD-Code homes shipped during October 2016, are valued at $308,523,404. And the 67,043 new HUD-Code homes shipped YTD are ‘production valued’ @ $2,881,000,000.
All the rest of the reported data is correct. Look to see the official COBA7 MHShipment Report to be part of January’s issue of the Allen CONFIDENTIAL! business newsletter.

Again, if not already affiliated with COBA7, one of three national advocacy entities serving land-lease communities and the manufactured housing industry, simply phone the Official MHIndustry HOTLINE: (877)MFD-HSNG or 633-4764. The longer you wait to do so, the longer it’ll be before you’re tapped into the best source of statistics and information available to everyone in the MHBusiness.

Remember, the 28th ALLEN REPORT will be enclosed in the January 2017 issue of the Allen Letter professional journal, at the Option II or III level of affiliation.

***

George Allen, CPM & MHM

COBA7 Joins MHARR & MHI as National Advocate for Land-lease Communities & Manufactured Housing

Friday, December 9th, 2016

Blog # 424 Copyright 2016 COBA7 @ 11 December 2016; community-investor.com

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

This blog posting is the sole national advocacy voice, official ombudsman & historian, research report & online communication media for North American LLCommunities.’

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

COBA7 Motto: ‘U Support US & WE Serve U!’ Goal of its’ print/online media = to ‘Not only inform & Opine, but to transform & improve MHBusiness model performance!’

_____________________________________________________________________

INTRODUCTION. Yes, businessmen and women respond to just about every weekly blog posting at community-investor.com. Do you? Part I, following, contains recent responses. Part II is, in truth, an historic announcement, as COBA7 announces as new national advocate for land-lease communities in North America, and HUD-Code manufactured housing.

I.

COBA7 Affiliates Respond to New Year Resolutions & ‘Tipping Point’ WHITE PAPER Expose’

“Excellent resolutions. I have one more. The election of Donald Trump presents the industry with a unique opportunity to put pressure on our federal regulator (i.e. HUD) to fully implement the Manufactured Housing Improvement Act of 2000 (a.k.a. ‘MHIA@2000′), and stop the expansion of industry-smothering regulation. We need a unified industry effort to get the federal program heading in the right direction. I am not talking about uniting MHI & MHARR, but I’m advocating for convening a coalition of industry leaders to develop a strategy to specifically deal with HUD. Much the same way it was done in getting MHIA@2000 enacted.” – now 17 years ago! This from one of the most respected association executives in the manufactured housing industry.

And on the heady and timely question of increased regulation, less regulation, or deregulation of manufactured housing, this ‘vote’:

“I vote to deregulate completely. We have the manufacturing capability to comply with locals (building codes) and most rural county regs.” Someone from the manufacturing segment of the MHIndustry.

And then there’s this, relative to the ‘Tipping Point’ WHITE PAPER Expose’. “I agree with your White Paper argument. I had the same individual ask me last week: “How do you explain to your residents that rents should be 2X where they are, because low rents are one of the largest issues out industry faces?” I said, “I don’t think it’s one o f the big issues – frankly, a strong value proposition for the consume is a far bigger issue.” Really, an industry that provides a strong value proposition thrives, those that don’t, go extinct. The HUD-Code and land-lease community (industries) are not thriving, in my view. ” This from the owner/operator of one of the largest property portfolios in North America.

As an appropriate aside to this response, know ‘value propositions’ with one’s homeowner/site lessees is a key challenge identified in the 28th annual ALLEN REPORT, scheduled for distribution as a lagniappe in the Allen Letter professional journal during January 2017. So, if you’re not affiliated with the Community Owners (7 Part) Business Alliance, or COBA7 at the Option II or III level, do so NOW, before the New Year. This year’s ALLEN REPORT, a.k.a. ‘Who’s Who Among Land-lease Community Owners/operators Throughout North America!’, is the largest one compiled and published during the past 28 years! To affiliate, phone the Official MHIndustry HOTLINE: (877) MFD-HSNG or 633-4764.

II.

COBA7® Declares Its National Advocacy Role for Land-lease Communities, Large & Small, Nationwide!

Post production segments of HUD-Code manufactured housing (e.g. suppliers, finance firms, state associations, & LLCommunities) are stepchildren to this type factory-built housing – or so it seems – when one examines the focus of MHARR & foci of MHI.

The Manufactured Housing Association for Regulatory Reform, since 1985, has limited its’ membership, and legislative/regulatory focus, to matters of concern to small and mid-sized regional HUD-Code home manufacturers. 100 percent of MHARR’s income is from member manufacturers. MHARR’s offices are in Washington, DC., and it enjoys the industry wide reputation for being manufactured housing’s ‘watchdog’ in the nation’s capitol.

The Manufactured Housing Institute, or MHI, throughout the history of manufactured housing, has claimed to represent business interests of all segments of the HUD-Code manufactured housing industry, including the largest of HUD-Code home manufacturers (Controlling an estimated 80 percent of national market share); most state MH trade associations; land-lease community owners/operators; personal property & realty finance firms; independent (street) MHRetailers; OEM/after-market suppliers of products and services. The majority of MHI’s income is from member housing manufacturers, by way of floor dues. MHI’s offices are in Arlington, VA.

Given the continuing, and now, 17 year paradigm shift, beginning at the turn of the 21st Century to this present day, the land-lease community post production segment, in particular, can no longer afford stepchild status! Despite MHI’s National Communities Council (’NCC’) division being in place since January 1996, this unique realty asset class, during the past six years – upon the disappearance of 10,000+/- independent (street) MHRetailers – has ushered in a NEW ERA, one where property owners/operators are openly viewed as the next generation of MHRetailer & lender, and deserve an effective level of national advocacy not heretofore and presently provided.

To this end, the Community Owners (7 Part) Business Alliance®, a.k.a. COBA7®, a for profit division of GFA Management, Inc., dba PMN Publishing – eventually to become a not for profit entity, was launched during January 2014, to serve land-lease community owners/operators in seven distinct ways:

• Ongoing statistical research relative to the realty asset class; highlighted annually in the ALLEN REPORT, a.k.a. ‘Who’s Who Among Land-lease Community Portfolio Owners/operators Throughout North America!’

• Updating & distribution of 12+ Statistical Resource Documents, or SSRDs, covering every aspect of LLCommunity operations, e.g. realty & personal property $ finance; 40 freelance consultants of all types; directory of print & online media; official MH lexicon; ‘GSEs, Federal Agencies, & NGOs’; professional property management certification alternatives; an Industry Briefing Sheet; directory of national advocacy entities; directory of all factory-built housing firms; an official paradigm shifts list, dating from 1970s to present day; directory of real estate brokerages serving LLCommunities; and Official State of the MHIndustry Report.

• Preparation & distribution of a weekly blog posting at community-investor.com; and, two subscriber-supported monthly business newsletters, the Allen Letter professional journal, & the Allen CONFIDENTIAL!

• Plan & facilitate superb interpersonal networking and educational offerings, to include deal-making opportunities.

• Instruct & certify professional property management training via the Manufactured Housing Manager®, or MHM® program

• And as need be, function as national advocate for land-lease communities nationwide and in Canada; as well as providing ombudsman and historian services.

Revenue to operate COBA7® comes from a variety of sources that include: registration fees for annual Networking Roundtable; paid affiliation with COBA7® at one of three levels depending on degree of ‘products & services’ land-lease community owners/operators desire from the coalition; MHM® tuition; paid access to exclusive 500+/- name data base of portfolio owners/operators, various consulting assignments, e.g. pre-due diligence inspections, Mystery Shopping, & expert witness work testimony.

Years 2016 & 2017. A presidential election with its’ surprising results, presents business opportunities otherwise not available, let alone envisioned six months ago. So, during this time of expected change, starting as it will be, ‘from the top’, something similar should occur throughout the HUD-Code manufactured housing industry. Why? For the aforementioned NEW ERA to continue and grow, i.e. increased volume of new home shipments going directly into LLCommunities, large & small, throughout the U.S., owners/operators must seize control of their business environments and destinies!

And what might those steps entail?

1. MHARR & MHI to formally accept and recognize COBA7® as a primary national advocate for land-lease communities, large & small, nationwide! For example, MHI charges dues of state MH associations, and others, but has not, to date – despite invitations to do so – affiliated with COBA7, to receive its’ newsletters, Signature Series Resource Documents (e.g. ALLEN REPORT & various directories), and other land-lease community products & services.

2. COBA7® to immediately identify and reach out to all federal agencies and regulators presently affecting land-lease community operations, e.g. DOE, HUD, FHFA & its’ related GSE. Furthermore, COBA7® plans to be present at all future public hearings and meetings of these agencies, especially when LLCommunity matters are on the agenda. For example; in a recent DOE hearing, COBA7 was the sole entrepreneur MH business present.

3. MHARR, MHI, & COBA7® to soon meet, to discuss and brainstorm measures needed to restore manufactured housing to prosperity, likewise among land-lease communities, large & small, nationwide. A possible point of initial focus might be the timely and shocking message conveyed in the ‘Tipping Point’ WHITE PAPER expose’ distributed in a late November blog posting at community-investor.com, and the December issues of the Allen CONFIDENTIAL! and Allen Letter. COBA7 & representatives from SECO (Southeast Community Owners) will be at the Louisville MHShow, 18-20 January 2017. How ’bout MHARR & MHI? Want to meet informally to plan how to grow and perpetuate this NEW ERA of cooperation between manufactured housing producers and land-lease community owners/operators?

As they say, ‘The ball is in your court!’ Now is time for action!

New Year Resolutions for 2017 & Much More!

Thursday, December 1st, 2016

Blog # 423 Copyright 2016 COBA7® 4 December 2016; community-investor.com

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

This blog posing is the sole national advocacy voice, official ombudsman & historian, research report & online communication media for North American LLCommunities!’

To input this blog &/or affiliate with Community Owners (7 Part) Business Alliance® a.k.a. COBA7®, use Official MHIndustry HOTLINE: (8777) MFD-HSNG or 633-4764.

COBA7® Motto: ‘U Support US & WE Serve U!’ Goal of its’ print/online media = to ‘Not only inform & opine, but transform & improve MHBusiness model performance!’

INTRODUCTION. Hang on! This is going to be a three part ride through 1) planning for the year 2017; 2) bracing for the coming ‘continued regulation’ vs. ‘deregulation’ of manufactured housing; and, 3) triple opportunity for specialized personal and professional education in Louisville, KY., on 17 January 2017. Ready? Well, here goes…

I.

What Are Your New Year Resolutions?

Year 2017 is but a few weeks away, making this the ideal time to reflect upon, and articulate, New Year Resolutions to guide one’s thinking and actions during the next 12 months. And year 2017 is poignant (‘biting, painfully acute’), as we move deeper into the ‘17 year paradigm shift’ we’ve endured since year 2000. The difference this year? Since we know we’re well within a NEW ERA for this industry and its real estate asset class, land-lease communities (a.k.a. ‘New Breed of MHRetailer & Lender’), why not reflect the changes, to respective business models to date, in the New Year Resolutions identified and codified? For starters, here’s the way I see them:

• Support the new President of the United States of America!

• HUD-Code housing manufacturers to redouble efforts to market and sell new homes into land-lease communities, large & small, coast-to-coast! Part of this will require manufacturers to teach LLCommunity owners/operators how to specify, order, install, market, sell, affordably price, and seller-finance homes they buy from factories.

• Land-lease community owners/operators to NOT heed the siren call to ‘double one’s rental homesite rates’ during 2017; but rather, offer fair and affordable housing propositions, i.e. Where possible, keeping combined monthly PITI mortgage & site rent payment ‘together’, at or below the National Average Affordable Housing Market Rent of $849/unit – including household expenses where possible. Of course, this will not work in some high-priced local housing markets.

• Emphasize importance of – and provide opportunities to receive, professional property management training & certification, for all on-site land-lease community managers overseeing 75 or more rental homesites. Everyone to be a Certified Property Manager, Accredited Community Manager, or Manufactured Housing Manager.

• Support one or more national advocacy entities who best represent one’s business interests as housing manufacturers or land-lease community owners/operators, within and outside Washington, DC.

• And what other one(s) might be added to this august 2017 list? (317) 346-7156.

II.

Manufactured Housing Faces Another Fork in the Road?!

Last Week You Learned of the Imminent Danger of Manufactured
Housing Going from being Affordable to Non-affordable
&
Now, This Weeks Message, Has to Do with Manufactured Housing, Maybe Going from being Regulated to Non-regulated!

Here goes…Chalk the following paragraph up to being rumor, truth, or mix thereof…

A few Fall seasons ago, HUD realized, as regulator of manufactured housing, it was not receiving enough income from label fees to cover expenses, so they (reportedly) sought relief from manufactured housing regulatory duties altogether. The Government Accounting Office (‘GAO’) interviewed HUD-Code home manufacturers to gauge their reaction(s) to the query, ‘What if HUD went away?’ At that point, ‘the MHIndustry’ stepped in surreptitiously (Did you ever read about that? I didn’t.). Next thing we knew, there was a major increase in HUD inspection fees at all factories. And at that point, the ‘threat’ – or was it an ‘opportunity’, for deregulation, went away. And enhanced federal regulatory oversight began…recall how (2007) new home installation & dispute resolution legislation, moved quickly from back to front burner, during years 2015 & 2016.

Fast forward to today. The parties to the decades old MH regulatory brouhaha are:

U. S. Department of Housing & Urban Development or HUD. Relative to manufactured housing, the federal regulatory agency. An agency, until the recent presidential election, appeared hell bent on extending their oversight and enforcement reach into every corner of manufactured housing fabrication and land-lease community installation, including dispute resolution and its’ minimal number of disputes to resolve..

Manufactured Housing Institute or MHI. Self-professed national advocate for all segments of the HUD-Code manufactured housing industry, including land-lease communities nationwide. Enjoys a reputation for being conciliatory, where regulatory matters are concerned. In large part responsible, since the mid-1970s, for turning the ‘lemon’ of HUD-Code housing regs into ‘lemonade’, as the turn of phrase goes, using the federal preemption nature of HUD’s national building code to its advantage. Though some now question whether the industry’s recent avoidance of deregulation might be akin to suffering from Stockholm Syndrome, i.e. empathizing with HUD regulators (‘Its’ captor’), versus seeking ‘freedom from regulation’ altogether.

Manufactured Housing Association for Regulatory Reform or MHARR. Since 1985, the manufactured housing industry’s champion (a.k.a. The Washington watchdog!’) for less federal regulation of the factory-built housing product. Seemingly, a would-be champion of deregulation – unless they too fear the unknown consequences of free market enterprise, where the future of manufactured housing is concerned.

And therein lies the rub…

Will, under a new president with a penchant for less federal regulation of business and otherwise, the manufactured housing industry be faced with wholesale deregulation, similar to what was described – but did not come about, in the opening paragraph of this recitation? The quickest path to deregulation would appear to be: Press for bureaucratic change within HUD’s present day manufactured housing program.

Or, will the manufactured housing industry be better served, by not ‘rocking HUD’s bureaucratic boat’, in a quest for installing less regulatory-minded bureaucrats within HUD’s manufactured housing program? Now there’s a sensitive question begging a wise answer.

Hmm. Sounding like a ‘Damned if you do & damned if you don’t’ scenario with each sequential paragraph…

What do you think? I, for one, would truly like to know. I’m conflicted. And frankly, nothing would please blog readers more, than to have elected leaders within MHI & MHARR, comment as to which course of action is best for the present and future of the manufactured housing industry:

• Unchanged HUD-Code regulation of home fabrication and new home installation

• Scaled back regulation of home fabrication and new home installation

• Complete deregulation of home fabrication and new home installation

What say YOU? Well, we distributed a DRAFT copy of this blog posting to several ‘deep thinkers’ in the MHBusiness. Here’s one of the answers we received:

“Having received some advantages of HUD regulation, over local building codes, my money is continuing under HUD regulation, but with more representation/involvement by all segments of the MH industry – certainly not relying completely on either of the two current national lobbyists.”

Interesting how this comment echoes MHARR’s recent call for better national representation of all post-production segments of the MHIndustry, certainly better than what is evident today. So, one more reason to expect, during the weeks ahead a major announcement from the Community Owners (7 Part) Business Alliance, or COBA7, a division of GFA Management, Inc., dba PMN Publishing.

If you’re not yet affiliated with COBA7, but would like to be, use the Official MHIndustry HOTLINE: (877) MFD-HSNG or 633-4764.

III.

Pre-Louisville MHShow, Day of Education!

January 17, 2017

Three Seminar Sessions Designed Especially for You!

All day, 17 January 2017, at the Crown Plaza Hotel on Phillips Lane, Louisville, KY., the Manufactured Housing Manager, or MHM, professional property management training & certification program. Taught by Katie Hauck, MHM, & Kathy Taylor, MHM. Cost? Only $250.00 MHM candidate. No testing. Starts at 9AM and ends at 4PM. Tuition pays for copy of Landlease Community Management text, monograph of contemporary writings, as well as MHM certificate & MHM lapel pin. Register via genevieve@roane.com or phone (317) 346-7156.

Morning of 17 January 2017, at the Crown Plaza Hotel on Phillips Lane in Louisville, KY., George Allen, CPM & MHM will lead a three hour seminar (9AM-Noon) designed for HUD-Code home manufacturers who want to learn How to Identify Land-lease Communities in all four major segmentations of the realty asset class. Open discussion relative How to Best Market & Sell New HUD-Code Homes to this Emerging Market.
To register, phone (317) 346-7156. Cost? Only $95.00 per registrant

Afternoon of 17 January 2017, at the Crown Plaza Hotel on Phillips Lane in Louisville, KY., Spencer Roane, MHM, will lead a three plus hour seminar (1PM – 4PM) introducing attendees to the basics and fine points of Lease-option Methodology, relative to seller-financing new and resale manufactured homes within land-lease communities. To register, contact Genevieve@roane.com or phone (317) 346-7156. Cost? Only $95.00 per registrant.

Then, stay over, and attend the Louisville MHShow, 18-20 January 2017.

***

George Allen, CPM & MHM
Box # 470-24, Indianapolis, IN. 46247
(317) 346-7156