Evergreen Issues & Evergreen Questions ‘&’ 16 April 2019
# 527 @ 1 April 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
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INTRODUCTION: I’ve been penning this blog posting series for more than a decade. And know what? Many of the same ‘issues & questions’ arise year after year after year! So, awhile back, I started to identify and iterate them in public, as a means of drawing attention to matters deserving resolution albeit improvement, over time and circumstance. Do YOU agree with what follows here? In either event, please let me know via email (email@example.com) or the Official MHIndustry HOTLINE: (877) MFD-HSNG or 633-4764. In the meantime, if not already subscribed to the Allen Letter, please do so via a visit to www.educatemhc.com Doing so, keeps this blog, and other Resource Documents coming your way! GFA
And, don’t miss Part II of this blog posting, relative to IREM’s webinar on 16 April 2019.
Evergreen Issues & Evergreen Questions
“Evergreen content is content that is always relevant…like evergreen trees retain their leaves all year. Interesting and relevant content that does not become dated, (&) is necessary in order to be found online by search engines.” That’s how blog posting # 512, in early December 2018, began. A brief review of the Evergreen Issues identified at that time, is timely and necessary, before turning our attention towards equally Evergreen Questions. The issues?
• Responsibility for the proper, safe and secure installation of new HUD-Code manufactured homes sited on scattered building sites conveyed fee simple, and on rental homesites within land lease communities. That issue continues to go begging!
• HUD, manufactured housing’s federal regulator resists promoting this type factory-built product as the attractive homelike, top quality, non-subsidized, energy efficient, transportable, affordable housing it is. Our nation’s affordable housing crisis continues!
• Existing manufactured housing stock is aging faster, in toto, than replacement stock can be fabricated and shipped from more than 100+ factories nationwide! And there’s an estimated 250,000+/- vacant rental homesites in land lease communities nationwide.
• All types of shelter sited within land lease communities continue to be ineligible for real estate-secured home financing, forcing said homeowners/site lessees to pay, on average, three points more for home loans than when sited on scattered building sites!
• Manufactured housing industry should sell new HUD-Code homes our prospective homebuyers and homeowner/site lessees can truly afford, based on local housing market Area Median Income, & Annual Gross Income of individuals and households.
• Marginal at best, is the public image of manufactured housing & land lease communities. While this might be the ‘price we pay’ for supplying the most affordable housing & lifestyle in the U.S. today, there is much room for improvement, via ads, etc.!
Those are some of the major Evergreen Issues afoot today. And there are more, e.g.
• Lack of secondary market for valuing, selling, and financing resale manufactured homes
• Lack of secondary market for selling-off seasoned chattel capital loans to replenish $
• Lack of widespread professional property management training & certification of staff
Now we turn to Evergreen Questions. To some wags, these perennial queries are known as the Dirty Little Secrets of Manufactured Housing & Land Lease Communities….
MANUFACTURERS. When will HUD-Code housing manufacturers, after 70 years in business, eschew their salacious D&R Delivery (i.e. ‘Drop & Run’) reputation, taking full responsibility for the installation of their unique housing product? Immediate consequences? Customer satisfaction & far less home warranty and post-installation repair and replacement costs!
FINANCE. When will manufactured housing lenders, independent third party firms and in-community transactions alike, include estimated annual household utilities expenses into the standard 30 percent Housing Expense Factor (‘HEF’) – or ‘front end debt limit’ qualifier, rather than position homeowners & homeowners/site lessees, to pay these bills in addition to monthly PITI (loan principal & interest, taxes & insurance) payments? This single factor accounts for the difference between housing finance transactions being ‘affordable’ or ‘risky’!
GOVERNMENT. When will HUD and other regulators ‘get out of the way’ of Free Enterprise efforts to provide quality, affordable housing products to the American citizenry? For example: once and for all, allow widespread use of properly engineered Frost Free Foundations for manufactured homes within and outside land lease communities. Stop meddling!
LAND LEASE COMMUNITIES. When will property owners ensure rental homesite rates are in sync with other forms of multifamily rental housing in the same local housing market, and cease maximizing profitability that lowers home values, spawns ill will, risks lower physical and economic occupancy, and creates marginal curb appeal along the way? Use the 3:1 Rule as a guide. Apartment rent at $900/month? Land lease community site rent maybe $300+/- month.
NATIONAL ADVOCACY ENTITIES. When will they finally learn to truly work together – if ever? For example: difference in how new home monthly shipment totals, based on Institute of Building Technology & Safety (‘IBTS’) input are calculated. And when will ‘affluence gerrymandering’ end (patronizing expensive meeting venues many cannot afford – discouraging participation), and begin allowing for ‘proxy voting’ to offset sparse meeting attendance?
And of course there are even more Evergreen Issues & Evergreen Questions. Please share your thoughts on these matters via firstname.lastname@example.org
Suggest you print off a copy of this blog posting and keep it handy as a reminder of the Evergreen Issues & Evergreen Questions that continue to beg answers & solutions during the months and years ahead.
16 April 2019
I’ve been a Certified Property Manager (‘CPM’) member of the Institute of Real Estate Management (‘IREM’) since before 1980. Over the decades I’ve penned articles about manufactured housing & land lease communities for their Journal of Property Management, and fruitlessly encouraged them to include our unique, income-producing property type amongst the commercial property types supervised by their membership. Well now, after 40 years, institute leaders have, in effect, ‘discovered’ manufactured housing & land lease communities – though 125+/- CPMs claim affinity for the realty asset class! So, on 16 April 2019, I’ll deliver an hour long webinar, introducing