Responses to ‘UPSIDE DOWN in a Mobilehome Park! & more….

Blog Column # 285 Copyright 2014 16 February 2014

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

Purpose of this blog. ‘It’s the national advocacy voice, statistical research reporter, & communication resource for LLLCommunities, of all sizes, throughout North America!’

Input this blog, & Affiliate with the Community Owners (7 Part) Business Alliance, a.k.a. COBA7, via the Official MHIndustry HOTLINE: (877) MFD-HSNG or 633-4764


‘UPSIDE DOWN in a Mobilehome Park’

Stimulates Record Response from Blog Floggers (Readers)!

If YOU missed last week’s posting, at this website, scroll back to blog # 284.
Suggest you peruse it (again?) before reading further here…

Space here for only two responses; first from a land-lease-lifestyle community turnaround specialist in California; the second, from a Midwest independent (street) MHRetailer.

“Outstanding commentary! (Summarizing) “…manufactured housing industry devotes an extraordinary amount of its’ resources to sell homes to people who really aren’t qualified home buyers. Why? Because they allow us to sell the old mobile home way…it’s easier than selling to qualified buyers who require a lot more effort. Manufactured housing may be the only industry in America who ignores the customer’s desires in their marketing practices. Unfortunately for us, potential buyers are much more savvy these days and appear to be abandoning us n droves.” Gub Mix, circa 2000

That was penned 14 years ago! And not only did homebuyers abandon us, so did chattel capital. Recall these ‘telling numbers’? 1999 = 348,843 new HUD-Code homes shipped; 2000 = 250,550; 2009 = only 49,789; & by 2013 = 60,228.*1 Year 2014?

In my opinion, the HUD-Code manufactured housing industry’s return to 1990s era performance and profitability depends on three factors, aptly expressed using the acronym ACE. That’s short for AFFORDABILITY (Many, if not most, new homes continue to be overpriced! When will our home manufacturers learn?), CAPITAL. We’re going ‘nowhere’ without ready and accessible sources of chattel and real estate-secured capital. So, land-lease-lifestyle community owners/operators Must Learn HOW to engage in effective, regulatory compliant self-finance of on-site home sale transactions via one or another form of ‘captive finance’, the lease-option, even the ‘renting of homes as apartments’ when need be; and, EQUILIBRIUM – meaning, HUD-Code home manufacturers must believe and perform in a manner acknowledging LLLCommunities are ‘Where the Action is!’, relative to filling an estimated 250,000 vacant rental homesites throughout the U.S. Do they believe? Not yet! But it is ‘telling’, in some local housing markets, as many singlesection manufactured homes are being built and shipped these days, as multisection homes. So, remember and practice ACE!

And here’s another reaction to the midweek posting of ‘UPSIDE DOWN in a Mobilehome Park’. This from a commissioned salesperson, and lightly edited:

‘Would it be anyone’s (including lender, salesperson, or park’s fault) that she (the wife/mother in the story) lost her job?

They were ‘big spenders’ and bought the large SUV. In my book, that’s just flat-out irresponsible, not creating a ‘buffer’ for unforeseen expenses. That’s part of being an adult, homeowner, and having a family.

The unexpected child? Blessing for sure, but kids are expensive and there are methods to prevent this if so desired.

They didn’t PLAN for the lot rent to kick in? WHY? They KNEW it would! Refer to previous ‘buffer’ statement…and their VARIABLE (Yes, it means just that…variable) rate to go up as it sure could have gone down (as the trend was in roughly 1996 – 2005).

And, how would this (tale) reflect poorly on our industry when nothing illegal or even ‘shady’ had been done? All promises seem to have been fulfilled by all parties involved, and terms seem to have been presented in an honest, forthright manner at point of sale.’ HM

How would you answer this latter commentary regarding ‘UPSIDE DOWN in a Mobilehome Community’?

End Note: *1. Remember the ‘2013 annual new HUD-Code home shipment total’ controversy raised in Part IV. of blog # 283 a few weeks ago? Whether, as an industry, we’d shipped 60,228 or 60,210 new HUD-Code homes during year 2013? Well, after studying official shipment tallies provided by HUD; as unofficial MHIndustry historian, we’re opting to go with the former, or 60,228 number in COBA7 Signature Series Resource Documents we research, print, and distribute throughout the year. These SSRDs include:1) the Industry Briefing Sheet (most popular four page reference requested in the U.S. & Canada); 2) Official State of the MHIndustry & LLLCommunity Realty Asset Class briefing outline; and, 3) whatever book(s) we publish during the year. To affiliate with COBA7, to receive the monthly Allen Letter professional journal, 25th anniversary ALLEN REPORT, and a dozen other SSRDs, simply phone the Official MHIndustry HOTLINE: (877) MFD-HSNG or 633-4764.


Signature Series Resource Documents, or SSRDs, Published to Date by COBA7

Reading & Using This Seminal Information in Your Business?

Did YOU Know? According to 25th Anniversary ALLEN REPORT (A.k.a. ‘Who’s Who Among LLLCommunity Portfolio Owners/operators Throughout North America’), the total number of rental homesites (in land-lease-lifestyle communities, a.k.a. manufactured home communities) owned by real estate investment trusts (‘REITs’) has increased from just 88,450 in 1994, to 217,769 in 2013; a 246 percent increase in sites!

Did YOU Know? According to the Official State of the MHIndustry & LLLCommunity Realty Asset Class presentation outline, distributed February 2014, by year 2012, the HUD-Code manufactured housing industry was shipping almost same number of singlesection homes as multisection homes to customers throughout the U.S.?

Did YOU Know? According to the 16th National Registry of Lenders, listing 21 real estate-secured mortgage originators and all chattel capital sources, the real estate – secured lenders & brokers originated a grand total of $4,195,000,000.00 in finance and refinance loans during year 2013! This ‘second most popular SSRD, behind the aforementioned ALLEN REPORT, will be distributed to COBA7 affiliates with the March edition of the Allen Letter professional journal. So, if not already having done so, phone and affiliate with COBA7 today, via Official MHIndustry HOTLINE: (877) MFD-HSNG or 633-4764.

Did YOU Know? In April, COBA7 will be distributing the 15th edition of the annual ‘Who Ya Gonna Call in 2014?’ list of freelance consultants working manufactured housing and LLLCommunities coast to coast and in Canada. If you’re a freelance consultant and want to be considered for inclusion in this widely referenced directory, simply phone (317) 346-7156 and present your bona fides. GFA


A Special Offer

to State & Province Manufactured Housing Associations in U.S. & Canada!

As you likely know by now, the Community Owners (7 Part) Business Alliance has been ‘up & running’ since mid-December 2013. To date, COBA7 has signed-up more businessmen and women affiliates, than the total number of members claimed by national advocacy entities representing land-lease-lifestyle communities, a.k.a. manufactured home communities, in North America!

Here’s how one New England-based LLLCommunity owner/operator views this debut: “I continue to enjoy reading your perspective, on industry happenings, in your blog – and look forward to see how COBA7 develops. Personally, I think an alliance is a much better approach, as opposed to (creating) another lobbying effort. Thank you for your continued dedication to the (manufactured housing) industry.” JC

These businessmen and women include mostly LLLCommunity operators, large and small; product/service vendors serving the realty asset class (e.g. real estate-secured lenders and brokers); as well as HUD-Code home manufacturers desiring to market their new homes to these property owners.

COBA7 is NOT a new, national, not for profit trade body; but rather, an alliance of independent businessmen and women who’ve decided to affiliate with the sole international resource actively engaged in effecting the following seven functions:

• Ongoing statistical research and data distribution, e.g. 25th annual ALLEN REPORT, a.k.a. the ‘Who’s Who Among LLLCommunity Portfolio Owners/operators Throughout North America!’ There is no other source of LLLCommunity related benchmark and performance statistics.

• Continual updating and distribution of more than a dozen Signature Series Resource Documents. These SSRDs include the 16th annual National Registry of Lenders – both real estate-secured and chattel capital sources & servicer; Official State of the MHIndustry & LLLCommunity Asset Class presentation outline, and at least ten more such reports & directories

• Online & print communication via 1) this weekly blog posting,2) the Allen Letter professional journal, and 3) the Allen CONFIDENTIAL! business newsletter – patronized by corporate officers needing timely intelligence.

• Superb peer networking opportunities via periodic FOCUS Groups, and 23rd annual International Networking Roundtable. Latter is tentatively scheduled for 10-12 September 2014.

• Deal-making opportunities via newsletters, peer networking, and more….
• Professional property management training and certification via popular Manufactured Housing Manager® – with nearly 1,000 MHMs® already trained, certified, and now working throughout the U.S. & Canada!

• And, when necessary, engage in national advocacy, relative to matters ignored or overlooked by other LLLCommunity bodies. Two initiatives are being pursued at present.

So, effective with the posting of this weekly blog, state and province MHAssociations, with LLLCommunity owners/operators members, are too welcome to affiliate with COBA7. Cost? Same as with business affiliates, only $544.95/year. For that amount, receive a 12 month subscription to the Allen Letter professional journal, all the SSRDs, and invitation to participate in the annual Networking Roundtable. Also consider the opportunity to host the one day MHM® training session, with tuition at $250.00/MHM candidate – and your association receives a $50.00 rebate for each person attending. Two states already considering scheduling MHM® classes this year.

This $544.95 annual COBA7 affiliation fee is less than what state & province MHAssociations presently pay to belong to most national advocacy bodies. And look what you receive – relative to LLLCommunities, in return?

Again, if interested in additional information, or want to affiliate with COBA7, simply phone the Official MHIndustry HOTLINE: (877) MFD-HSNG or 633-4764 today!


George Allen, CPM®Emeritus, MHM®Master
GFA Management, Inc.,
Box # 47024, Indianapolis, IN. 46247
(317) 346-7156

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