Berkshire Hathaway Home Services, precursor for affordable manufactured housing?

Blog # 259 Copyright 2013 18 August 2013

Perspective. ‘Land lease lifestyle communities, a.k.a. manufactured home communities, & earlier, ‘mobile home parks’, are the real estate component of manufactured housing.’

Purpose of this blog. ‘To be a national Advocacy voice, statistical Research reporter, & communications Resource for LLLCommunities, of all sizes, throughout North America!


a precursor for affordable manufactured housing?

RISMedia’s REAL ESTATE magazine, for the month of August 2013, describes BERKSHIRE HATHAWAY Real Services as being “…a residential real estate franchise brand…set to invigorate the real estate industry.” P. 3. This is such a grand story, its’ two principals command the cover photo of the magazine, and the Publisher’s Desk column (more about this later) gushes with enthusiasm; this followed by a five page feature story beginning on page 66.

Here’s what the magazine’s publisher has to say about branding in general, and the official launch of the ‘Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices’ brand in particular. All the while, watch for the logical, but as yet unrealized, tie – in to HUD – Code manufactured housing and its’ real estate component, the land lease lifestyle community (a.k.a. manufactured home community)….

Effective branding has always been an important cornerstone of the real estate
business. From the local independent firm to the national franchisor, real estate leaders of all shapes and sizes strive to maximize their brand and thereby create
that all important consumer recognition and loyalty.

That’s what makes the official launch of the Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices
Brand such a big deal. Perhaps enacting one of the most significant branding coups to date, the brokerage network – operated by HSF Affiliates – is banking on the power of Warren Buffet’s Berkshire Hathaway name to bring the concept of real estate branding to a whole new level! (Underlining for emphasis. GFA)

There it is! The potential double tie – in to, and with, HUD – Code manufactured housing and LLLCommunities! If I have to spell it out for you, here goes:

• Branding. HUD – Code manufactured housing has never had really it – thanks to entrepreneurial self interest & perennial internecine squabbling – but ever since Berkshire Hathaway acquired Clayton Homes, Inc., ‘MH branding’ has been on the minds (and in the fears) of manufactured housing aficionados and competitors alike, e.g. ‘When and how will it (MH branding) eventually happen?’ After all, given present ownership of Clayton Homes, Inc., Berkshire Hathaway already commands 48+/- percent of new manufactured housing market share nationwide – even amidst rumors of further soon growth in the Southeast. They’re there (brand positioned), it’s just not their focus – yet. So, if not yet, perhaps in the near future, we’ll see ‘an affordable housing franchise brand’ , or better yet, ‘MH brand’ also launched!

• Real Estate. And, HUD – Code manufactured housing is an inexpensive, quality housing type and affordable lifestyle, already in place, routinely siting new homes on scattered building sites conveyed fee simple, as well as into 50,000+/- multifamily rental properties nationwide! So, it’s but a hop – skip – and – a – jump to envision what a factory – built housing product, brand, and affordability awareness, like ‘Berkshire Hathaway Home Services’, would bring to the manufactured housing industry and land lease lifestyle community realty asset class.

Bottom line? BERKSHIRE HATHAWAY Home Services likely hits its’ realty brand stride during year 2014. And let’s hope a similar ‘affordable manufactured housing franchise brand’ isn’t far behind – whether launched via Clayton Homes, Inc. and its’ parent company; or, on a broader scale, via the Manufactured Housing Institute – and dare I suggest – better yet, a joint national brand marketing effort between MHI and the Manufactured Housing Association for Regulatory Reform!? After all, in the case of the institute, and its ‘Big 3 C’ members: Clayton, Champion & Cavco, they already corner more than 80 percent of the national market share of HUD – Code manufactured housing! So, let’s get the ball rolling together!

We’re already nearly there – but for pernicious self – interest and internecine squabbling, within the institute and between associations. Let’s overcome these bugbears and get on with recovery and a return to profitability! Hey, Warren, you listening? We hope so!


Know What?

There’s more I could, and maybe should, share with you this Sunday morning. But the gist of Part I of this blog posting is important and timely enough to stand on its’ own! How so? Because if YOU buy into what’s penned here, and are not distracted by any other newsy notes and musings that’d otherwise follow in Parts III & IV following, YOU might be motivated to speak out to your state MHAssociation leaders, even our elected and salaried national advocates in and around Washington, DC., telling them

We’ve Waited Long Enough For Them to Wax Creative and Take Definitive Leadership Steps to Resurrect the HUD – Code Manufactured Housing Industry from its’ five year malaise of shipping but 50,000 new homes per year, and head back to the 250,000 shipment mark thought to be sustainable over the long haul!

WILL TELL YOU THIS. Not only are rumors afoot of further consolidation within the home manufacturing segment of the manufactured housing industry, but at least one HUD manufacturer has become so busy of late, in part due to a unique in – house finance program available to land lease lifestyle community purchasers of their new homes, that said firm has reached out to other manufacturer(s) to build new homes to their unique ‘specs’, to be shipped into the secondary manufacturer’s region, to save on freight costs. All this and much more, especially along the lines of ‘creative chattel finance alternatives’ will be disclosed at the 22nd International Networking Roundtable, 18 – 20 September, in Bloomingdale, IL! Registration already eclipses 50+% of the max number of attendees allowed. So, if not already signed – up for the 20+ educational sessions, nine peer networking events, and major realty deal – making opportunity, phone the Official MHIndustry HOTLINE: (877) MFD-HSNG or 633-4764 Today!


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

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