RAW LAND DEVELOPMENT & MORE….
Blog Posting # 646 @ 9 July 2021: EducateMHC
Perspective. ‘Land lease communities, previously manufactured home communities, and earlier, ‘mobile home parks’, comprise the real estate component of manufactured housing!’
EducateMHC is the online national advocate, asset class historian, data researcher, education resource & communication media for all land lease communities throughout North America!
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Motto: ‘U support US & WE Serve U! Goal: to promote HUD-Code manufactured housing & land lease communities as U.S. # 1 source of affordable attainable housing! Attend MHM Class!
RAW LAND DEVELOPMENT & MORE….
Scott Roberts of Roberts Resorts & Communities will be keynote speaker at the upcoming, final Networking Roundtable & Retirement Celebration, 12 August 2021, at the downtown Hilton Hotel in Nashville, TN. For more information and to register, visit www.educatemhc.com
The final Networking Roundtable & Retirement Celebration is the first in-person, national manufactured housing-related group meeting to occur in 1 ½ years since the coronavirus pandemic began. Don’t miss this landmark opportunity! And all RV/MH Hall of Fame inductees in attendance are asked to wear their distinctive Kelly green blazers to the evening banquet.
While I haven’t written much about it of late, I am of the firm conviction that the development of raw land into land lease communities, and expansions thereof, are reemerging trends (Dormant since mid-1990s) throughout much of the U.S. Here’s just an inkling of who’s doing so these days:
Roberts Resorts & Communities in AZ, CA,CO, TX & AL
Zeman MHC, and Community Management Group, both with new communities in MI
Four Leaf Properties in TX, FL, MI, & elsewhere
Tunnell family in Lewes, DE
Spartan-Investors in Seattle, WA.
What else will be unique about this year’s networking roundtable event? As with past roundtables, everyone will have an opportunity to introduce themselves during the opening session. Following Scott Roberts’ presentation, we’ll engage in a Fireside Chat type audience interaction, and discussion of any industry and realty asset class topic desired! Some ‘already requested topics’ include:
COVID related matters, issues, changes to business models. How has this affected you?
Real estate-secured and chattel financing. Proceedings from the 14 July FHFA-hosted Listening Session with the two GSEs, as well as input from other sources.
Predatory property management practices by some rapidly-growing land lease community portfolio owners/operators, and the resulting threat of new landlord/tenant legislation.
Eviction Moratorium and its’ effect on your business operations.
Then there’s the proverbial ‘elephant in the room’; specifically, ‘how & who’ will land lease communities owners/operators rely on for communication, networking, statistics-gathering, resources and more, come the end of this year?
Finally. The Directory of participants everyone receives will, as in the past, be the most comprehensive such resource available anywhere in the manufactured housing industry!
Oh, and at least one special surprise is being planned for everyone present for this first national manufactured housing and land lease community event since the coronavirus pandemic!
96 DONORS & $1,820,690 TO DATE!
The names of the 96 donors to the MH Museum Campaign at the RV/MH Hall of Fame in Elkhart, IN., reads like the ‘Who’s Who Among Manufactured Housing & Land Lease Community Realty Asset Class trade associations, board members, community portfolios, financial firms, foundations, and individuals!
Have YOU donated yet? If not, please do so soon. It will take the full $2,000,000 to finish the long-awaited manufactured housing wing of the RV/MH Heritage Foundation’s Hall of Fame Museum & Library. To do so, simply phone (574) 293-2344 or send your check to RV/MH Hall of Fame c/o 21565 Executive Parkway, Elkhart, IN. 46514.
And to be involved in the perennial ‘icing on the cake’, plan now to attend the two years-combined RV/MH Hall of Fame Induction Banquet on 16 August 2021. Already expecting more than 650 guests that evening. I’ll certainly be present and hope to see YOU there too!
HAVE YOU NOTICED?
People Write, But Do Not Document or Provide a Means for Feedback!
Before it became so easy to write and publish online, writers and editors of commercial print trade publications took special care to be accurate about what they published, and made it easy for readers to inquire and or respond accordingly. In my opinion, this simply isn’t so, anymore. Here’s just one example:
Recently, Andrew Kern of MULTI HOUSING NEWS, and senior research analyst at Yardi Matrix, published a manufactured housing-related piece titled:
‘Selling MHCs to the People Who Call Them Home’. There’s the first problem! Just what is an MHC? Nowhere is this abbreviation explained. But he is here, based on what follows, referring to land lease communities (a.k.a. ‘manufactured home communities’…hence the confusing MHC label).
Next problem. “For manufactured housing investors, however, a new avenue for exit has opened in the form of resident-owned communities.” This is a common and confusing error characteristic of naïve writers from outside the manufactured housing industry. Perhaps Mr. Kern is unaware of the fact that ‘manufactured housing investors’ are different from land lease community investors – or as he’d likely prefer, ‘MHC investors’. How so? Well, in the first instance, a manufactured housing investor buys resale manufactured homes sited on parcels of realty conveyed fee simple, or places said home(s) accordingly, then rents the units out by the week or month. Land lease community investors, on the other hand, are owners/operators of this unique type of income-producing property. Big big difference!
Next problem. “…the average manufactured home park resident is over 55 years old and will live at that park for an average of 14 years.” Pray tell, where does this writer come up with this data? Might be true of homeowners/site lessees in upscale, all-adult land lease communities in Sunbelt regions of the U.S… He probably does not know that the tongue in cheek description of folk who prefer the land lease community lifestyle is, they’re ‘newly wed or nearly dead’ Point? Writers owe it to readers to validate statistical claims like this, and get their story right.
Next problem. And here’s how we always know something like this has been penned by someone with only minimal intellectual and experiential grasp of their subject matter: “Park residents aren’t renters….they are homeowners with a ground lease” This 1960s (‘park’) trade lingo is archaic. Should have read: “Land lease community homeowners are rental homesite lessees.” And it gets worse before it gets better (which does not happen), when he writes of ‘manufactured housing parks’.
The latter half this article, as one might expect from the title, describes positive aspects of resident-owned communities or ROCs, e.g. “…average annual rent increase of less than one percent. This is considerably less than the 3.5 percent average annual site rent increase as reported by MHI.” And how it costs more than $5,000 to relocate a manufactured home these days. The ROC positive message is questionably underscored by this writer, when he quotes Frank Rolfe, co-owner of MHP Funds, praising the virtue of “…residents of the park own the land their homes sit on.” That’s all true, but how ‘bout the two classes of homeowner/site lessee (not everyone signs-on when converting to an ROC) – those who are investors in the cooperative and those who are not, and the consequences thereof? And professional property management? Are any of these homeowners/site lessees trained and certified as professional property managers, or is everyone volunteer labor? Visit a few of these ROCs; all is not always rosy. And the list goes on…
While this is admittedly a puff piece extolling the desirability of resident-owned communities, it’s a shame, in my opinion, the writer got so many of the finer points (e.g. terminology) of land lease community ownership/operations wrong. And, adding insult to injury, once again, did not provide a direct means for readers to respond.
But that’s long been the industry’s albatross, outsiders not knowing, understanding or appreciating the inner workings of manufactured housing, and its’ realty sector, land lease communities.
George Allen, CPM, MHM