Executive Summary in one phrase. It’s about making the manufactured housing great and respected, as the most proven form of affordable housing, while making doing business in the manufactured homes industry as easy and profitable as possible for independents. The rest are details and commentary.
Don’t skim, and don’t miss “think big.”
There is only one chance to be a part of a affordable manufactured housing history making event. Modify or otherwise make plans to attend Thursday Afternoon, starting at 12:15 PM sharp.
Typically, the Tunica Show starts ‘breaking down’ around 11 AM, after Dennis Hill at Show Ways Unlimited gives the go-ahead.
Come early to get to the meeting room and to be seated. One seat per person. There will be a photo op at the end of each session. This should be something that is part of your professional legacy. This can be something that your family and friends talk about in positive terms.
You can enter the room starting at 11:45 AM.
Details and Decorum
This will be a respectful discussion. Business professionals are free to think and do as they please, within the limits of the law and common professional decency.
‘PG rated’ only please. The Kovach family’s 12-year-old son will be there. Example, you can say the letters “BS,” but please don’t say the words. No F-bombs, or G-D-mn, etc. Professional, respectful talk, even robust talk, but all of it geared toward actions that solve real problems.
Meeting Organizers, as well as hotel security, and law enforcement each reserve the right to remove trouble makers, crass, those who can’t control cursing, etc. All prior messages and articles on this topic apply.
That said, different points of view are welcomed and encouraged. People will speak in turn as they come up to the microphone, and the moderator/facilitator(s) decide. Time is limited, so focused comments only please. After reading this, you can easily plan ahead about what you want to say. About what you would want such a pro-growth trade group to do and achieve.
MH Sinners vs. Saints? Nope…
This isn’t about MH Sinners vs. Saints. We’re all imperfect people. What defines an honest professional is what happens after a mistake occurs.
Rather, this will begin with a discussion about alleged:
- market, finance, restraints on free trade, regulatory, and other forms of manipulation and/or rigged systems – past and present.
- Then, we will pivot to addressing how best to unrig those obstacles legally, honorably, and profitably.
Note that these ideas have been collected over time from a variety of sources, within MHI, MHARR, state association, and those non-aligned with any association. MHProNews is publishing this, but the ideas are far from being ‘ours.’ They are in many cases from independent MH pros just like yourself. That’s why there is keen interest, because it sounds like – and is – sourced from MH Pros like you.
Once again for emphasis. This will be about Positive Goals and Real Solutions Orientation. We’ll discuss industry problems, but only with the view of solving them
Defining Ourselves Positively and Properly
Let’s be clear. Your biggest competitors to HUD Code manufactured homes are subsidized housing, rental housing, single family housing, condos, townhouses, the rising forms of other prefab housing and the like.
We as independent should want the HUD Code manufactured home industry to define ourselves, so that others don’t define us to our detriment and that of our current and potential customers.
We will do so in part with honest and ethical mainstream and other media engagement, plus engagement with education, political, and other nonprofit groups where mutual victories are possible.
Enforce Existing and Good Federal Laws
Manufactured homes already offer more consumer protections than mainstream housing, and at a fraction of the price. We as MH Independents have plenty to be proud of, and not much to apologize for, save perhaps poor post-production leadership.
That means the good news is we don’t have to wait years to pass new laws. The reality is that in most cases, the federal laws needed already exist. They only have to be enforced. Let’s quickly review.
- A) Duty to Serve (DTS) Manufactured Housing is already the federal law. It’s pure nonsense that a decade after HERA 2008 was enacted that DTS isn’t already up and running.
- B) Federal Enhanced Preemption has been the law since the Manufactured Housing Improvement Act (MHIA) of 2000 was enacted. It’s arguably scandalous that MHI for some time had not even had those words on their website. Be it incompetence or a hidden agenda, the Omaha-Knoxville-Arlington axis and their allies have largely failed the industry in this regard.
- C) RICO, extortion by fear, restraint of free trade, artificially manipulating a market is already illegal. Antitrust is already the law.
Simply put, our once far greater industry should be doing several times more business than it currently is.
- There are about 100,000,000 Americans living in rental housing. That alone could make and keep HUD Code Manufactured Home Builders busy for decades to come.
- 1 in 7 statistically are moving every year. The MH Ideals alliance want them to at least consider the HUD Code Manufactured Homes option.
- If the public increasingly considers our homes, when they come and see for themselves, and businesses deal with people honestly and professionally, our industry can rapidly become busier than it has ever been before.
Our industry is arguably one of the greatest opportunities in America today, so long as the system is unrigged. We have a proven product that’s misunderstood. That misunderstanding must arguably be laid at the feet of MHI and their puppet masters.
But let’s give them credit, because they’ve shown the rest of the industry what to do and what not to do. By routinely clearing up the misunderstandings, by enforcement of existing laws, and working with other like-minded groups where ever possible, the industry will achieve its great potential.
So once again, in summary, this 3 session meeting the afternoon of Thursday March 28th will be about making the manufactured housing great and respected, as the go-to proven form of affordable housing. It will be about making doing business as an independent in the manufactured homes industry as easy and profitable as possible. The rest are details and commentary.
What Will This Cost You To Attend? Nada
There is no charge, and no commitments to anything other than a respectful discussion within the guidelines and goals herein set.
Please arrive a few minutes early. It’s a big hotel, and those attending must come through the main hotel entrance for security reasons. Security cameras and other security systems are in place.
Relax, Enjoy, Stay Cool!
Refreshments, a light meal, coffee, tea, water will be served, starting at 11:45 AM for those who have RSVP’d.
Each of the 3 sessions will start with a short power point presentation, which will followed by a discussion and Q&A.
There will be breaks between each session. Rest rooms are located right by to the meeting room. Each session will be about an hour.
For the Q & A, comments and ideas segments, a microphone will be set up for those ready to speak. MH Professionals will speak one at a time, and in turn.
The meeting will be near the Tunica Show, about 5-10 minutes away by car, depending on traffic, etc.
What Are The Three Sessions? Which Ones Should You Attend?
Session 1, Start time at 12:15 PM, seating opens at 11:45 AM on Thursday, March 28, 2019. Seating is limited, please come early.
Session 1 is in a sense for most ‘everyone’ in the industry. Select Big Three Producers, MHI leaders (staff or Executive Committee), State Association Executives are Invited to Session 1 only. At this time, one Big 3 leader has asked to attend, but we welcome a late arrival that electronically RSVPs. An MHVillage/MHInsider leader is welcomed to session 1 only, electronic RSVP is needed.
Session 1 will outline industry problems, so that solutions can be proposed to fix them. Omaha-Knoxville-Arlington have been invited to discuss, explain, or refute the claims and concerns that thousands of professionals have.
At this time, we expect MHI, NAMHCO, MHARR, State Association, and non-aligned manufactured home industry members to participate. A table for them will be next to the speaker’s podium, and near the power point projector screen. A power point will be part of each session, to help focus the issues.
Session 3 is the last session, and it is only for Independents, non-big three HUD Code manufactured home producers. Session 3 will start at about 3:15 PM. It will give current non-big 3 HUD Code producers a chance to discuss issues of mutual interest, how they can work with each other better for industry growth, within the confines of the law. Session 3 may also help HUD Code independents increase market share, by better working with the new non-producers, post-production association. Former HUD Code builders are welcomed too, for reasons that will be made clear. Independent HUD Code producers are encouraged to have a representative come to all 3 sessions.
Session 2 – Start time about 1:o0 PM.
Leaders of Independent Retailers, Communities, and all other independents (suppliers, transport, professional services, etc.) and independent producers. First, an outline of concepts already on the table will be presented, and then it will be opened up for group input, Q&A, and organizational next steps.
Who is Welcomed to Session 2: Independents (Non-Big 3) Only. Builders, Retailers, Communities, Suppliers, Lenders, Financial Services, Professional Services, Transport, Installers, and other Service Providers and all others are invited. RSVP as shown below.
Session 2 will Focus On MH Industry Growth
To begin to discuss and organize a pro-growth, pro-solutions, fast-industry response alliance that deals with real issues. This isn’t going to be about posturing efforts, as some believe has too long been the case by Arlington and their allies. Rather, the new trade alliance will be about dealing with issues that artificially limit our industry.
Session 2 – The ADL of Manufactured Housing
Manufactured housing and our residents are often demeaned and diminished in ways that harms our industry’s acceptance. That must be stopped in ways using media engagement similar to what the ADL, NAACP and others have used. Once our home owners are not treated or unjustly thought of as ‘trailer trash,’ the desire to be a manufactured home owner will go up. First our home owners come from every walk of life. Second, every soul is worthy of their human dignity.
Understanding Real Challenges, with Goal and Solution Orientation, Always.
Getting and Keeping Good Employees and Help?
Building the industry’s image will make attracting the right talent easier. There are numbers of other steps possible too, that will help attract and retain good talent for MH Alliance members and their affiliates.
The Laws Are On Our Side
The Good News is that federal law, per legal sources we’ve consulted with, already favors the HUD Code manufactured home industry. Deed restricted HOAs may be one thing, but the BS of local Planning and Zoning boards trying to bar placement of HUD Code manufactured homes arguably violates the spirit and intention of the federal law on enhanced HUD code preemption.
Federal law is preemptive. Full stop.
There are also antitrust, RICO, and other federal laws that may apply. These will be explored for the purpose of leveling the playing field between industry giants, and independents. The good news is that early feedback from attorneys on these has been encouraging.
We as independents ourselves at MHProNews celebrate all honest success. We conceptually, legally, and morally oppose systems rigged to favor only a select few. That’s arguably what MHI has become, a ‘big boys’ club that routinely postures but in practice ignores the needs of independents of all kinds.
The working name for this is MH Ideals, but the group that forms can name it whatever they wish to.
While MHProNews leaders and others are facilitating the planned birth of a new MH Independents Non-Producers trade group, once formed, the MH Ideals alliance will be an independent entity that neither MHProNews nor our legal affiliates will own or control in any way. We want to be a part of such a group, and serve such a group as possible.
Floor Dues can be collected from any producers. Members can do business with any firm that they wish. Other organizations may participate and work with this new pro-growth trade alliance as a non-voting affiliate, but producers will have no formal role in this new MH Ideals independents alliance.
The working plan is to establish a trade group with bylaws and ‘conflict of interests’ standards that can’t be dominated by the richest or most powerful, or a limited few. Rather, this organization will work for the good of the entire group, will still being competitors. Rephrased, we want this to be and stay legal, and avoid the pitfalls of any another existing group(s).
The Rising Tide
The principles will be that the rising tide will lift all member boats. Treat other as you want to be treated. Do whatever is right, legally and morally.
The welfare of consumers and honest business standards must be held high. That is how a new Pro-MH Growth trade alliance will succeed where MHI has arguably failed.
The new group will work with consumers and others like NFIB, MHARR, NAMHCO, and other associations – as well as with for and nonprofits, educators, or others as needed – to advance the interests of members and the industry’s well-being.
As the new MH Ideals is birthed and grows, published research will be used to debunk the outdated myths and misrepresentations that have too long plagued our industry. Real Education of Independent Alliance Members and the public at large will make these member companies powerhouses for ethical profit.
Once formed, the new MH Independents Alliance Members will commit to a code of professional conduct. Members will be given exclusive marketing, advocacy, educational, networking, and other benefits that will lead to more profits.
The goals are honest, legal, and sustainable growth. While there will obviously be costs to be a member of the birthing MH Alliance, the benefits of more profits and less headaches running your business should combine to make the membership dues investment decision easy.
The MH Ideals alliance members will get benefits those outside of the alliance won’t. So, there will be no skating or gaming the system. Those in the alliance will commit to not giving away the alliance’s benefits to non-alliance members, all within the scope of the law.
Once established, there will be a vetting process to become and remain an alliance member.
More Positive Media and Publicity – For MH Ideals Members
The Independent MH Alliance members will get access to publicity and other business development, employee attraction and retention plans, legal, marketing, and other benefits. Again, others outside of the MH Alliance won’t get those without joining. There Ain’t No Such Thing As A Free Lunch (TANSTAAFL).
By properly and lawfully structuring the new group, non-members won’t get the same level of benefits via coattails, period.
Trade Shows with Public Days, and Trade Days.
There has long been a call for more and better trade shows, that are both industry and public-days events. The MH Alliance should be part of that process, and not depend upon existing trade shows, period.
Some private and public shows have been done in arguably inferior ways. The lessons of the past can be learned and used to improve trade events and outcomes for those who participate.
MH Alliance Members will do regional and market-based events that will profitably be part of Protecting, Educating, and Promotion (PEP) of Manufactured Homes as America’s Most Proven Affordable Housing Solution.
Think Big, Not Self Limiting
With 100,000,000 Americans living in rental housing, and National Association of Realtors (NAR) studies suggesting that some 80 (+/-) percent want to be home-owners, the sky is the limit for visionary HUD Code manufactured home professionals.
Let MHI members or others aligned with Omaha-Knoxville metro brands think as they wish within the limits of the law or as morality allows. We call for no boycotts, or other forms of counter-manipulations.
This should be a force for good in manufactured housing.
The new group will work with lenders and the GSEs to enforce the law in mutually beneficial ways.
If MHI and their puppet masters fight pro-growth efforts or hypothetically attempt to continue to game and manipulate the system, the new trade group should plan to robustly oppose them privately and in public.
The new independents group won’t stand idly by while Berkshire Hathaway brands arguably use the Warren Buffett strategic Moat to nudge ever more business out of business. See the linked related reports under Warren Buffett’s meme above for more details.
The new alliance will not condone or defend bad behavior by other industry professionals. That will make alliance members an attractive place for consumers to want to do good, honest business.
These principles and action steps will combine help create a climate of trust in MH Ideals alliance members. When the alliance speaks, others will be more apt to listen.
The group will start with what it ever it has and will grow from there. The NCC, MHARR, NAMHCO all reportedly stated with only a few professional firms or people. We expect more than that to attend, but huge initial numbers aren’t necessary to get the ball rolling.
Its about quality companies and people who believe in the kinds of principles outlined herein.
Among the most common concerns by independent producers of HUD Code is the lack of independent retailers. We want to establish a climate where independents can open new locations and flourish by doing good, honest business.
We want to make it easier to be in the manufactured housing industry business again.
What You Should Bring and Do To Attend the Fix the MH Industry Tricks Meeting
RSVP a Text Message to 832-689-1729.
Text the following:
RSVP Fix the MH Industry Tricks
- Your Name(s) (EG: John and Jane Brown)
- Your Business Name (EG: John’s MH Sales, and Jane’s MH Community)
- Your Title (EG: Owner, manager, executive.)
- Your Cell Phone Number (EG: all 9 digits: XXX-XXX-XXXX)
We will text you back the hotel and meeting room location. That will be your RSVP confirmation.
Again, Modify or otherwise make plans to attend Thursday Afternoon, starting at 12:15 PM sharp. We encourage attendees to arrive early, the doors will open at 11:45 AM, with food and refreshments available.
One alone can be isolated and beaten. But a group that stands together against unjust forces will be hard to beat. Independents can compete and win, with the backup of such a pro-growth trade group.
Let’s stop worrying, and fretting. Let’s do this. That’s this morning’s manufactured home “Industry News, Tips and Views Pros Can Use,” © where “We Provide, You Decide.” © ## (News, analysis, and commentary.)
Your link to industry praise for our coverage, is found here.
For the examples of our kudos linked above…plus well over 1,000 positive, public comments, we say – “Thank You for your vote of confidence.”
“We Provide, You Decide.” © ## (News, analysis and commentary.)
(Image credits and information are as shown above, and when provided by third parties, are shared under fair use guidelines.)
Submitted by Soheyla Kovach to the Daily Business News for MHProNews.com.
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