Apparent Sun Communities Linked LLC Hit-‘Willful Violation’ ‘Consumer Fraud’ Ordered to Pay 800K+ Fines-Penalties as AG Warns-‘Manufactured Home Community Owners are on Notice;’ plus MHMarkets


The News Journal said about the controversies that erupted regarding the Pine Haven manufactured home community: “The owner of a downstate manufactured home community will have to pay hundreds of thousands of dollars in penalties, as well as restitution for excessive rent charges.”  Per Blue Delaware: “Owners of manufactured home communities should consider themselves on notice,” Attorney General Kathy Jennings said. “Exploiting vulnerable Delawareans with threats and lies is not something manufactured home community owners can expect to get away with.”  ”The administrative penalty against Blue Beach amounted to $737,000 for “willful violations of the Consumer Fraud Act” and a $94,000 penalty for violations of the Cease and Desist Order.” In addition to some $831,000 in fines and penalties, the also said: “plus rebates [to residents of the community] for excess rent charged.” Blue Delaware has a guest post by Jack Guerin that names Sun Communities and its corporate leader, Gary Shiffman, as being linked with the LLC that owns Pine Haven. Online searches indicate that Guerin “is a member of the ACLU-DE’s Coalition for Smart Justice…” and “is an anti-corruption advocate with” Per Guerin: “An administrative hearing officer in a opinion finds that Blue Beach Bungalows DE LLC (a Blue Water subsidiary).” In that same article Guerin stated: “In the Second Amendment to the Real Estate Purchase Agreement signed on August 11, 2021, Rig Acquisitions, the “Original Purchaser” assigns the contract to Sun Fort DuPont RV LLC, a Michigan LLC which now becomes the “Purchaser”” of Pine Haven. “The Amendment states that this new LLC “is owned or controlled by, or otherwise affiliated with, Sun Communities, Inc.” The FDRPC Board met on August 11, 2021, the same day this Second Amendment was executed. Richard Forsten was now serving as FDRPC Counsel and he provided the following report on the “Bluewater Agreement.”” An inquiry to Gary Shiffman led Sun Communities by MHProNews on 5.8.2024 regarding these claims and legal issues has not received a reply over 15 hours later as of 7:55 AM ET on 5.9.2024.


5.10.2024 at 9.15 AM. Update Pending. Note: an extensive update has been added at about 12:10 PM ET, see Part II #13. That update was the result of a belated response from an official at Sun Communities, which was received after this article was posted.


Part I

1) According to a document from the website, linked here and here, are the following statements, findings, and allegations. The apparent terminology error in what follows is in the original.

“In general terms, this matter arises from the 2022 acquisition by Respondent of the Pine Haven Mobile Home Park (“Pine Haven”), located in Lincoln, Delaware. Following the acquisition, Respondent took various actions that gave rise to the Summary Cease and Desist Order, the associated Complaint, and this proceeding.”

“On September 15, 2022, Respondents hand-delivered to Pine Haven residents a letter that read in pertinent part as follows:


We are happy to inform you that we are the new owners of Pine Haven Campground. We are going to continue to operate Pine Have in accordance with its legal permitting as a seasonal community.

We understand that there are some residents that were misled by the former owner’s operations and believe that this community is a year-round facility. It is simply not. Under seasonal operation, the utility services would terminate by November 15th of each year. However, we know that because some of you have made your permanent home in Pine Haven with no knowledge of the seasonal limitation of the community, we are going to work with you so that we can help ease you through this transition back to seasonal.

Thus we will not discontinue utility services at your home until November 15, 2025. This will allow you three (3) years to find another permanent residence.”

2) From that same state document on page 15-16 is the following.

“On March 22, 2023, on behalf of the CPU, Deputy Clarke wrote Respondent’s attorney. He recited the recent events, including Respondent’s most 16 recent, March 10 eviction threat, and repeated and expanded the CPU’s cease-and desist demands, as follows:

  • Blue Beach Bungalows must immediately cease and desist from any and all false and misleading communications to residents, including, but not limited to: (1) claiming that the residents are licensees; (2) claiming that the community is and has been, seasonal; (3) threatening the residents with eviction in violation of Chapter 70; (4) threatening the residents with arrest and prosecution; (5) threatening to confiscate and destroy the residents’ property; and ( 6) by threatening the residents with illegal rent increases.
  • Blue Beach Bungalows must immediately and unequivocally revoke and withdraw all eviction deadlines that it has communicated to the residents, in forms acceptable to the CPU, and must cease and desist from all such future communications. It is insufficient that you continue to respond that these deadlines are ‘negotiable.’ They must be revoked and withdrawn.
  • Blue Beach Bungalows must immediately cease and desist from threatening or attempting to evict tenants in violation of Chapter 70. The letter made clear that it constituted an attempt to obtain voluntary compliance pursuant to 29 Del. C. § 2525(c) and required assurance of compliance by close-of business on March 27, 2023. Exh. T. 56.


3) The next day, March 23, Respondent’s attorney sent at least some residents a new notice with an amended rent increase and a new eviction deadline.”

From page 16 and 17 is the following.

  1. Also the next day, March 23, Respondent’s attorney emailed resident Jeremy Suloff (misspelled as “Jermey Sutloff”) as follows:


I am filing the summary possession action today as we discussed. However, my client is still offering the settlement agreement we discussed. I have attached the stipulated agreement to settle the case. You do not have to pay any more rent, or the rent we claim you owe. You can pick up your incentive moving check at my Lewes Office on June 1. As long as you move out by August 31, the eviction case is dismissed. I will mail you a copy of this agreement as well. Please sign and return it to me ASAP. Let me know if you have any questions. Thanks!


4) From page 18: “On March 27, 2023, Deputy Clarke responded by letter. In pertinent part, he wrote that the CPU would not negotiate with Respondent while it continued to threaten the residents.” CPU is the Consumer Protection Unit of the Delaware Department of Justice.


5) From page 19, #64: “The foregoing factual allegations and chronology demonstrate that Respondent has consistently engaged in deceptive and fraudulent conduct involving Pine Haven. Respondent has repeatedly falsely claimed to tenants that Pine Haven is a seasonal community — in its letters to residents dated June 30, 2022; July 18, 2022 (two letters); September 15, 2022; February 23, 2022 (two letters); and March 7, 2023. Respondent’s representatives, including its attorney, have repeated the false statements to residents numerous times in 2022 and 2023. Respondent’s counsel has also made the claims to residents’ attorneys at CLASI and Legal Services, as well as to the CPU.”

  1. Respondent has also repeatedly threatened residents with arrest and prosecution, and that their belongings would be confiscated and destroyed, in its letters dated July 18, 2022 and February 23, 2023. To be clear, no one, including no attorney, could reasonably believe that there was the slightest chance that the police would arrest any Pine Haven resident. Yet Respondent made those threats, explicitly and repeatedly.”

…“68. Because of Respondent’s repeated misstatements and threats, some tenant have already felt compelled to leave the community. 75-year-old Elmer Jefferson, for example, lived at Pine Haven for five years until he felt forced to vacate in the fall of 2022. Respondent’s attorney’s letter to him confirms that Respondent knew that Mr. Jefferson had been a full-time resident until Respondent decreed the community to be seasonal.”


6) Starting at page 21 are the causes of action against the owner of Pine Haven, listed further below, who Guerin apparently asserts is linked to Gary Shiffman led Sun Communities (SUI).


7) Per Delaware state records from a documented entitled: “DELAWARE MANUFACTURED HOME RELOCATION AUTHORITY REGISTERED COMMUNITIES AS OF APRIL 15, 2024” is the following.


The typo in campground is in the original but has been corrected in the MHProNews version of that document linked here.


8) Blue Delaware said on Apr 25, 2024 “An administrative hearing officer in a opinion finds that Blue Beach Bungalows DE LLC (a Blue Water subsidiary) willfully violated the Delaware …”


9) DelMarvaNow on 1.12.2023 stated: “The Pine Haven Campground in Sussex County is owned by parent company Blue Water Development Corp. of Ocean City …”


10) Woodalls, in an apparently separate Delaware deal, reported on March 3, 2023 that “‘Sun’ Buys Jellystone Park From ‘Blue Water‘ for $5M.”

So, absent information from Sun, which Shiffman has thus far failed to respond to MHProNews, there appears to be some history between Sun and Bluewater which seems to support the contentions made by Guerin via Blue Delaware. 


11) Sun’s website does not show on the linked page Pine Haven as one of their locations in Delaware. That said, that may be because of the apparent efforts of the Blue Beach Bungalows, LLC to evict the residents. As Guerin said: “However, Blue Water has not been a party to the many agreements related to the sale of the campground property. Instead, Mr. Burbage and his company have been shielded by anonymous LLCs.”


12) Again, per Guerin via Blue Delaware are the following.

QuoteMarksLeftSideSun Fort DuPont RV LLC

The new campground owner is a Michigan limited liability company. Fortunately, Michigan LLCs are not completely anonymous as they are in Delaware. Gary Shiffman is listed as the “Agent”. Mr. Shiffman is Chairman, Chief Executive Officer, and President of Sun Communities, Inc.

Form 10-K for Sun Communities, Inc. filed February 23, 2023, reveals that the company owns more than eleven hundred LLCs which are almost equally divided between Delaware and Michigan LLCs. Mr. Shiffman’s net worth is at least $176 million.”

13) Per the DE state document linked here are the following causes of action in the Pine Haven manufactured home community case.


  • Count I: Violation of the Consumer Fraud Act (Seasonal Property)
  • Count II: Violation of the Consumer Fraud Act (Promises/Threats)
  • Count III: Violation of the Consumer Fraud Act (Illegal Rent Increases)
  • Count IV: Violation of the Deceptive Trade Practices Act (Seasonal Property)
  • Count V: Violation of the Deceptive Trade Practices Act (Promises/Threats)
  • Count VI: Violation of the Deceptive Trade Practices Act (Illegal Rent Increases)
  • Count VII: Violation of the Manufactured Homes and Manufactured Communities Act (Chapter 70) (Notice)
  • Count VIII: Violation of the Manufactured Homes and Manufactured Communities Act (Chapter 70) (Rent Increases)


Part II – Some Recent History on the Pine Haven Community, per the State of Delaware

Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control [DNREC]| Division of Water | News | Date Posted: Tuesday, January 10, 2023

QuoteMarksLeftSideDNREC Issues Notice of Violation to Owner of Pine Haven Campground Community for Ongoing Wastewater Issues

After a month-long investigation into reports of illegal wastewater discharge within the Pine Haven Campground Community located near Lincoln in Sussex County, the Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control today issued a Notice of Violation (NOV) for wastewater violations to property owner Blue Beach Bungalows DE, LLC and parent company Blue Water Development Corp. of Ocean City, Md.

The NOV faulted the company for failure to possess appropriate on-site wastewater and disposal system permits as required by Delaware regulations, and cited violations beginning Dec. 9, 2022 for untreated wastewater surfacing above septic tanks and cesspool disposal areas within the campground community.

DNREC’s Division of Water began monitoring the situation at Pine Haven in early December, directing the property owner at that time to take corrective action that included performing frequent pump-outs of the onsite systems to alleviate surfacing, and to submit a plan that addressed ongoing violations.

The NOV memorializes these immediate corrective measures communicated by DNREC to company officials, and includes other corrective action requirements such as: fencing off impacted areas to prevent public contact with untreated wastewater; daily inspections and reporting of data to DNREC, and establishing a timetable for developing a permanent wastewater solution for Pine Haven residents.

The Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control protects and manages the state’s natural resources, protects public health, provides outdoor recreational opportunities and educates Delawareans about the environment. …” ##


MHProNews notes that in the view of some in the manufactured home industry, operators at times have allowed water, sewer, utilities or other issues to fester in the hope that residents would be more amenable to departure or that public officials would order a community to be cleared. So, if a Sun linked LLC is attempting to clear out the Pine Haven community for whatever reason, allowing environmental or health issues to fester may be part of a tactic deployed at a property.  Sun certainly has millions in cash as well as lines of credit necessary to fix whatever issues a property such as Pine Haven might encounter.

Part III – Attorney General Kathy “Jennings obtains victory for manufactured housing residents”

Department of Justice Press Releases | Date Posted: Thursday, April 11, 2024

Attorney General Kathy Jennings has obtained a preliminary victory for residents of the Pine Haven manufactured home community after the community owner, Blue Beach Bungalows DE, LLC, violated statutory protections afforded to the residents. An administrative hearing officer issued an opinion last Thursday, April 4th, finding that Blue Beach has willfully violated Delaware’s Consumer Fraud Act, among other laws, and ordered the company to pay over $800,000 in penalties, along with rebates of excess rent paid by residents.  Blue Beach has 30 days to appeal the order.

“Owners of manufactured home communities should consider themselves on notice,” said Attorney General Kathy Jennings. “Exploiting vulnerable Delawareans with threats and lies is not something manufactured home community owners can expect to get away with.”

“We’re grateful for the DOJ’s vigorous enforcement of our state’s manufactured housing and consumer fraud laws against an exploitive community owner who took advantage of vulnerable residents,” said Anthony Panicola, Supervising Attorney of the Elder Law Program at Community Legal Aid Society, Inc. (CLASI). “CLASI is proud to have worked together with DOJ on this important enforcement action, which will help ensure that community owners respect residents’ fundamental rights going forward.”

In April 2023, after receiving numerous complaints from residents, AG Jennings’ Consumer Protection Unit (the “CPU”) issued a Summary Cease and Desist Order requiring Blue Beach to refrain from making false statements to residents and evicting residents in violation of the law, among other things. The Cease and Desist Order was accompanied by a complaint detailing how residents were subjected to illegal rent increases, illegally threatened with eviction and arrest, and, in some cases, forced out of their homes prematurely. An administrative proceeding followed, culminating in an administrative hearing in September 2023.

“The harm caused by [Blue Beach]’s actions cannot be undone,” the Hearing Officer wrote in a 90-page opinion issued on April 4th. Despite being operated as a manufactured home community with “numerous year-round residents,” the park owner repeatedly made false and misleading claims as to the nature of the park as justification for taking action against residents. The Hearing Officer ordered the park owner to rebate all tenants and former tenants “any excess rental payments,” and awarded an administrative penalty of $737,000 for willful violations of the Consumer Fraud Act, as well as a penalty of $94,000 for violations of the Cease and Desist Order. The park owner has the option to appeal, and the order is not final until the window for appeal is closed.

A number of Pine Haven residents targeted for eviction by the park owner were protected due to a recent amendment to Delaware’s Manufactured Housing Code. 2022’s House Bill 374, proposed by Attorney General Jennings and sponsored by Representative Madinah Wilson-Anton, expanded the definition of a manufactured home to include certain camper trailers, recreational vehicles, and motor homes.

Manufactured housing complaints can be made to the Office of the Manufactured Housing Ombudsperson on the Delaware Department of Justice’s website or by calling the hotline at (800) 220-5424.    ##


Part IV – Additional Information on Sun Communities (SUI), Gary Shiffman, and their ties to the Manufactured Housing Institute 

Note that the featured image at the top right is from Delaware Public Media, which said: “The owner of the Pine Haven manufactured home community near Lincoln in Sussex County is ordered to pay over $800,000 in penalties plus rebates for excess rent charged. The owner – Blue Beach Bungalows DE, LLC – has 30 days from the April 4 ruling to file an appeal. The hearing officer’s ruling says it violated Delaware’s Consumer Fraud Act and other laws. “So they misrepresented the nature of the property saying that it was a seasonal campground when many residents had lived there year-round for multiple years, and that was sort of the central issue of the case,” said Deputy Attorney General for DOJ’s Consumer Protection Unit Brian Canfield. “Secondly, the campground owner gave residents various deadlines about how long they were allowed to stay on the property.”

In no particular order of importance are the following items.

1) Sun Communities (SUI) is one of 10 or more companies, many of which are Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) members and/or are members of a MHI state association affiliate, that have been hit by multiple antitrust lawsuits filed on behalf of residents.




2) MHI has an apparent history of failing to enforce, or even respond to concerns about, their so-called MHI-National Communities Council (NCC) Code of Ethical Conduct.


JoelBrownRossHPartrichRHPPropHavenparkResidentsNewComplaintRHPPropertiesEvictDiscriminationHikesHavenparkCommunitiesManufacturedHousingInstCodeEthicalConductMastMHProNews Note: Havenpark, per a source, is no longer an MHI member, but the reason for that is unclear. If Havenpark was booted, why are others tolerated? Or did Havenpark’s leaders, after fact checks like this one, figure out that it simply didn’t make sense to stay a member of MHI and they just left on their own?


3) Sun has, per MHI’s website, a seat on the MHI board of directors. MHI has a unique history of giving so-called awards for excellence to organizations that may have poor (e.g.: D, F) ratings for their problematic business practices with residents/customers, per the Better Business Bureau (BBB).





Yes! Communities


4) Sun Communities (SUI) is also said to have a poor record with employees, per comments and ratings from career site giant Indeed. It is worth noting that some of those same brands have been accused of predatory behavior, that may make working with residents more stressful for employees, as well as making life more difficult for residents and/or customers.




5) There is apparent evidence that MHI is largely working for the interests of consolidators of the manufactured housing industry.  That may constitute an oligopoly style of monopolization of manufactured housing. This is apparently true despite the fact that MHI has an antitrust statement. So, if true, they are not acting in ignorance. Bing’s AI powered Copilot has observed that MHI has apparently not responded to these allegations, at least not directly in manner that is publicly discernable through an online search.




6) In a Q&A with left-leaning Bing’s Artificial Intelligence powered Copilot is the following.

What sorts of controversies has Gary Shiffman led Sun Communities been involved in according to online reports? Link results.

BingCopilotAI-Screen1.3.2024MHLivingNewsGary Shiffman, the CEO of Sun Communities, has been involved in a controversy related to an insurance scam. Here are the details:

  1. Insurance Scam Allegations:
  2. Sun Communities and Gary Shiffman:
    • Sun Communities, a major REIT that develops manufactured home communities, is led by Gary Shiffman.
    • Shiffman’s involvement in the insurance scam controversy has drawn attention.
    • The case raises questions about the company’s practices and its CEO’s actions.
  3. Lack of Industry Coverage:
    • Interestingly, industry news sources have not widely covered this case.
    • It remains to be seen whether industry associations like the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) will address this report.

For more detailed information, you can read the full report by The Detroit News1. 🏠⚖️

Learn more


Note that the reports linked on MHProNews include information not found on the Detroit News website. They include documents involving Shiffman that are part of various legal proceedings and which, as Copilot observed, including allegations of insurance fraud. Those reports have remained near the top of the most-read reports on MHProNews (out of thousands of available articles) for months. Given the nature of the allegations and evidence, that may be due to ongoing legal, media, and other probes.


7) In follow up Q&As with respect to Sun, Shiffman, and MHI are the following.

What other controversies involving Sun Communities and/or Gary Shiffman are there?

BingCopilotAI-Screen1.3.2024MHLivingNewsCertainly! Here are some controversies involving Sun Communities and its CEO, Gary Shiffman:

  1. Insurance Scam Allegations:
  2. Involvement in an Insurance Fraud Scam:
  3. Exposing Biden Tax Scheme Benefits for Consolidators:

In summary, Sun Communities and Gary Shiffman have faced controversies related to insurance, legal actions, and tax implications. These incidents underscore the need for transparency and accountability within the industry123. 🏠⚖️

Learn more

> Has Sun Communities been named in antitrust litigation that involve purported price fixing? Do those allegations also involve other Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) member brands and/or MHI linked state association affiliates?

BingCopilotAI-Screen1.3.2024MHLivingNewsYes, Sun Communities has been involved in antitrust litigation related to price-fixing allegations. The lawsuit alleges that Sun and other manufactured home community owners illegally coordinated their prices by sharing non-public, competitively sensitive data. This information allowed the defendants to violate U.S. antitrust law by charging unreasonably high prices for lot rentals and occupancy. The controversy involves allegations against several companies, including Sun Communities, and is scheduled to go to trial. Gary Shiffman, CEO of Sun Communities, has been implicated in this case12The legal actions have generated thousands of pages of evidence, but it remains to be seen how the industry and organizations like the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) will respond to these allegations3. 🏠⚖️

Learn more


Is it fair to say that beyond information and evidence found in articles published by MHProNews and MHLivingNews, that several mainstream media outlets have been reporting on problematic behavior by Sun and other MHI member brands that are consolidation focused and are seemingly violating the MHI-NCC Code of ethical conduct over the course of years with no apparent consequences? Is it also fair to say that some of those MHI brands that have drawn mainstream media attention or scrutiny on MHProNews/MHLivingNews are getting awards and accolades from MHI and MHI linked trade media, which in turn routinely ignore the evidence of alleged predatory and other legally questionable behavior involving Sun and fellow MHI members? And didn’t the legal research by Samuel Strommen with Knudson Law specifically mention problems in the REIT sector and MHI members in his antitrust research?

BingCopilotAI-Screen1.3.2024MHLivingNewsIt is indeed fair to say that beyond information and evidence found in articles published by MHProNews and MHLivingNews, several mainstream media outlets have reported on problematic behavior by Sun Communities and other Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) member brands. These brands, which are consolidation-focused, have seemingly violated the MHI-NCC Code of ethical conduct over the course of years without apparent consequences.

Furthermore, it is accurate to note that some of these MHI member brands, despite drawing mainstream media attention or scrutiny, have received awards and accolades from MHI and MHI-linked trade media. This discrepancy raises questions about the industry’s ethical standards and the effectiveness of self-regulation.

Samuel Strommen, a legal researcher with Knudson Law, specifically mentioned problems in the REIT (Real Estate Investment Trust) sector and among MHI members in his antitrust research. His work highlights monopolization concerns related to Clayton Homes, 21st Mortgage Corporation, Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway, and other specific MHI members. Strommen’s research underscores the need for transparency, accountability, and regulatory action to address alleged predatory practices within the industry123. 🏠⚖️

Learn more


10) Beyond Strommen, there are a range of others who have made evidence-based allegations of wrongdoing that involves MHI members, including Sun. Additionally, the Lincoln Institute is among those who have asserted with evidence that the Duty to Serve Manufactured Housing has been turned on its head by companies who are working with Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac to make living in manufactured home communities (often incorrectly called “mobile home parks,” etc.) less affordable.




11) Sun Communities and Gary Shiffman specific insights are found in the reports linked below. Note several of the items seem to suggest that MHI is being used by companies that appear to include Sun in a scheme that fits the kind of oligopoly style monopolization (industry consolidation) scheme that could drive site fees higher for residents of their properties. Questions regarding potential materially misleading remarks/omissions to investors, RICO, antitrust, and Hobbs Act violations are just some of the possible legal concerns that appear to involve Sun, as well as other possible members of MHI or MHI-linked state associations.




12) It should also be noted that the growing evidence for these concerns appears to contribute to the growing affordable housing crisis that has swept the U.S., increasingly so since the declared COVID19 outbreak.  Meaning, there are discernable ripple effects from these market manipulations. While not yet adjudicated, there is ample evidence that such purported wrongdoing are hardly victimless crimes. See the related reports to learn more.
13) Promised Update on 5.10.2024 at about 12:03 PM ET. 

Email and Phone Call History Evidence Between MHProNews and Sun Communities


from: Nate Philippsen>
to: L. A. “Tony” Kovach – for MHProNews
date: May 9, 2024, 12:22 PM
subject: Sun Communities response



Thank you for taking my call. Please confirm receipt of the below response.

“Sun has no involvement and no ownership of the Delaware MH property in question. We request you update the article to ensure it is factually accurate.”


Apparent Sun Communities Linked LLC Hit-‘Willful Violation’ ‘Consumer Fraud’ Ordered to Pay 800K+ Fines-Penalties as AG Warns-‘Manufactured Home Community Owners are on Notice;’ plus MHMarkets


Nate Philippsen

SVP, Sales & Marketing

Sun Communities, Inc | Sun Outdoors

Direct: 248-864-0426 | Cell: 763-226-7907

27777 Franklin Rd, Suite 300 | Southfield, MI 48034 | | NYSE: SUI

==== end of email ====

b) The statement below from Kovach to Philippsen “If I understood you correctly” is a reference to the first call from Philippsen, shown in the screen capture below. It took about an hour and 14 minutes for Philippsen to respond with this email below.


from: L. A. “Tony” Kovach – for MHProNews
to: Nate Philippsen>
date: May 9, 2024, 12:29 PM
subject: Re: Sun Communities response
from: Nate Philippsen>
to: L. A. “Tony” Kovach – for MHProNews
date: May 9, 2024, 1:41 PM
subject: RE: Sun Communities response


  1. If I understood you correctly, going forward you are open to fielding questions from MHProNews/MHLivingNewson behalf of Sun Communities, is that accurate? That would be welcome.
    1. Yes, I am. 


  1. Is there any other item in that report that in Sun’s view is factually inaccurate, other than the ownership of Pine Haven?
    1. Since Sun has no involvement and no ownership of the Delaware MH property in question, I see no reason to have Sun mentioned in the article at all.


Nate Philippsen

SVP, Sales & Marketing

Sun Communities, Inc | Sun Outdoors

Direct: 248-864-0426 | Cell: 763-226-7907

==== end of email ====

c) As the below indicates, Kovach’s typing could have been better, but there was a time crunch in trying to respond while keeping a long-scheduled conference call in mind.


from: L. A. “Tony” Kovach – for MHProNews
to: Nate Philippsen


date: May 9, 2024, 1:54 PM
subject: Re: Sun Communities response

Nate, Thanks for the follow ups. I’ve got a conference call coming up, so briefly.

1) I can’t change the headline, so this has to be handled accurate and with the dynamics on our end in mind.

2) As to your first and second message, I’d like you to clarify or add a remark out of fairness to us. We contacted Gary well in advance of this being posted. Had Gary responded, it would have been handled differently, or perhaps not run at all. I’d like you to provide a statement that makes it clear to our readers that you (i.e.: Sun) were contacted some 15 hours before we published, and that you understand that we are doing Sun the courtsey of providing your reply after the fact. Phrase that in an appropriate way, I’m spitballing, with my call in mind.

3) Going forward, I’d much rather have your firm’s input before not after, but either works. It is in our mutual best interest to get responses in advance.

Make sense? Thank you.


==== end of email ====

d) Let’s note that a close reading of what was published by MHProNews was and remains arguably factually accurate, based on what was known at that time. No news source, no matter how large, can see the future and so they and we can’t possibly anticipate what might occur after an article is published.

An evidence-based case can be made that based on the information available as published above, that MHProNews technically committed no errors whatsoever. Had Shiffman responded promptly, the article may not have been run in its current format. At the time MHProNews published, we accurately quoted Blue Democrat. The Blue Democrat quote suggested the link between Sun Communities and the LLC that owns Pine Haven. Additionally, as the research published above indicates, MHProNews checked to see if the LLC involved had done business with Sun previously. Per the cited source above, it had. Thus, the evidence was plausible. News and analysis were based on the available evidence.

e) Then note, between his first email and his second email, Phillipsen moved the proverbial goal post (the “ask” by Sun). He also apparently failed to answer the actual question in #2, which he used to make the revised ask. Between his first and second email, he went from offering a denial of the information cited by Blue Democrat, to requesting that their name be erased from the article altogether. Sorry, that shipped sailed, and it sailed because Shiffman failed to respond in a timely fashion.

f) A look at the MHProNews email to Shiffman reflects the point that it said the report could run the next morning. The link to the Blue Democrat article was provided to Shiffman. Why they didn’t make a denial before publishing is one of several possible questions the answers to which are not known.

g) As the screen capture of the phone calls indicate, Phillipsen called again. Sun’s SVP launched into what we would allege that his call:

  • was a thinly veiled legal threat.
  • He also said that they had ‘proven’ that the information they gave was true and that we were refusing to modify what they claimed was inaccurate.
  • Pardon me, but he did no such thing. He issued a denial. There was no ‘proof’ provided by Sun or Phillipsen with that denial. Nor where we finished with follow up questions, when he launched into his posturing and misrepresentation of what had occurred in our emails. The emails speak for themselves, which is one of several reasons MHProNews has long preferred text or emailed messages. The he said, she said (or in this case, he said he said).



h) Following another call from Philippsen to MHProNews, Kovach sent the following response on behalf of MHProNews and its parent company, LifeStyle Factory Homes, LLC.

from: L. A. “Tony” Kovach – for MHProNews
to: Nate Philippsen
date: May 9, 2024, 3:56 PM
subject: Nate, not now, not ever should you try to put words in my mouth


You can re-read what I sent you. Feel free to forward it to your company attorney. I’ll do what I said, but I’m not going to be placed in anything other than an accurate light. Your man had an opportunity well in advance to respond. He opted not to do so. That’s reality. For you to threaten me and try to put words into my mouth that I never said or thought or implied was in my view an error.

Send me a fairly worded set of remarks, or have your attorney call or message. Either way, thanks.


L. A. “Tony” Kovach
Managing Member
LifeStyle Factory Homes, LLC

DBAs: | …”

As of 5.10.2024 at 11.05 AM ET, there has been no further response from Philippsen or others at Sun Communities.

i) Some of those messages were forwarded to Gary Shiffman at Sun and the suggestion was made to Shiffman that he obtain from Philippsen all of the emails between that Sun SVP and Kovach for MHProNews/LifeStyle Factory Homes, LLC.


from: L. A. “Tony” Kovach – for MHProNews
to: Gary Shiffman
date: May 8, 2024, 4:36 PM
subject: Gary, media inquiry



It seems that this fellow is saying that you and Sun are linked to these issues in Delaware, is that correct or not? If so, you or a colleague are welcome to email a remark for publication.

We plan to report, perhaps tomorrow AM. LMK, thanks.

L. A. “Tony” 

L. A. “Tony” Kovach
Managing Member
LifeStyle Factory Homes, LLC

DBAs: | |…

Connect on LinkedIn: 


MHProNews note. 4:36 PM ET is 3:36 PM CT.


from: L. A. “Tony” Kovach – for MHProNews
to: Gary Shiffman
date: May 9, 2024, 10:25 AM
subject: Gary, follow up. Fwd: Gary, media inquiry


Offering you an opportunity to correct, clarify, or confirm as the case may be.

I think you know the drill, please email your response for our mutual accuracy. Thanks.


Additional Information with MHProNews editorial commentary on the above.

i) From the time the 2nd emailed message to Gary Shiffman from MHProNews was sent on 5.9.2024, it only required about an hour for Sun SVP Nate Philippsen to call. The second email was sent on May 9, 2024, 10:25 AM (ET). By 11:47 AM we had the first call from SVP Philippsen.

j) The first point that can be taken from that is that Sun is capable of responding swiftly. Most companies of substance can.

k) Next, apparently Shiffman delegated the matter and Sun SVP Philippsen ended up the person on point with MHProNews. Based on Philippsen’s LinkedIn page, he has been with the firm for 4 years and 9 months. That certainly ought to be plenty of time to know how someone should communicate with media.

l) As a disclosure, from time to time, due to Google Ads type service, MHI member companies – including, but not limited to Sun Communities – have ads visible on our website(s). That doesn’t mean that there is any direct relationship between them or one of our trade media platform.

m) Even if there was a direct business relationship, that doesn’t mean that we would avoid a story of substance. Our job as trade media is the same as any media should do, which is in part to hold the powerful to account. Others in MHVille trade media and bloggers may kiss some MHI member or other entity/person/firm’s derriere, sorry, that’s not our job.


“There are many kinds of journalism, but at the heart of their constitutional responsibilities, journalists are in the business of monitoring and keeping a check on people and institutions in power.” Trade media can and should be a ‘cheer leader’ when it is appropriate to do so. But authentic trade media also holds the powers that be to account. Who says? The American Press Institute.


n) As previously noted, in 14 years, we’ve received several ‘legal threats’ – blunt or thinly veiled. Several, but not all, were linked to MHI and/or MHI connected firms, as has been previously reported. For whatever reasons, perhaps including this one, is that if a suit were ever filed, a countersuit and discovery can result.  It has been well over a decade since we have had a legal issue ‘go to court’ (it was not publishing related), and those cases have typically resulted in our victories and/or a settlement in our favor. Evidence matters. Being demonstrably correct matters. In publishing, we aim both for fairness and for other good reasons to be factually accurate. If Sun or someone else attempted to sue in circumstances like this, while it may take time, we as an LLC would fully expect to prevail and come out with a wider, not a thinner wallet.

o) That said, Philippsen’s assertion that his remarks are ‘proof’ are logically and arguably no such thing. It may be true. It may be paltering. It may be false. We don’t claim to know, we cited Blue Democrat accurately and asked Gary Shiffman well in advance of publishing for their input.

p) Had Philippsen not moved from mouthing (posturing?!)  about forming a ‘relationship’ (whatever he might have meant by that before this writer politely cut his call short and suggested that he email MHProNews, which he demonstrably did), MHProNews would have asked more questions. For instance.

  • What relationship did Sun have with the LLC that owns Pine Haven?
  • Was there a pending purchase for Pine Haven, perhaps premised on certain things begin accomplished before the deal would close?
  • Here is the reality of this. What we now know is that Sun denies the Blue Democrat based allegation that we accurately quoted. Fair enough. Their denial may or may not be accurate or misleading.

q) For whatever reason, as the Kovach to Philippsen reflects, this writer was irritated and a bit angered by his apparently crude attempts to make false statements as if posturing for someone else, or perhaps for a recording? Whatever the case may be, it might come out if litigation would occur.

r) Approaching a day has elapsed since the last call with Philippsen and the follow up messages inviting them to have their attorney contact us. No further calls nor messages that we are aware of have been observed.

s) MHProNews plans to let Shiffman and Philippsen know about this update. At that point, we will consider this matter closed. That said, it would still be welcome to have someone at Sun and other MHI linked organizations that would respond to concerns that arise regarding industry issues. After all, we have established our penchant for accuracy and fairness, with the apparent exception of typos.

t) MHProNews and our MHLivingNews continues to shed a light on issues of importance and aim to hold the powerful in MHVille to account. That’s manufactured home “Industry News, Tips, and Views Pros Can Use” © where “We Provide, You Decide.” © That motto and mission are posted on virtually every page on this site. It is one of several reasons why we would expect to prevail if any legal issue should arise.

ManufacturedHousingInstituteHitByAntitrustAllegationsInOpEd_MHI-AttorneyDavidGochMollyBoyleAskedRespondEvidenceBasedConcernsCopilot-AiFac CheckRefersToMHIsOrwellianApproachMHProNews
When MHI leaders and outside attorneys are asked by MHProNews to respond to remarks like the one posted above, they routinely remain silent. A recent example of MHI failing to respond to a standing invitation to weigh in, supplemented by an almost business-daily publicly announced remark to that effect, is a specific contact with respect to the timely and demonstrably relevant topics linked here. MHI launched the use of that new logo in 2022 when manufactured home production was in the early phase of what became a sharp 15-month long production downturn. Meaning, MHI’s use of such slogans are similar to Soviet-style or Orwellian propaganda slogans.




Part III – Our Daily Business News on MHProNews stock market recap which features our business-daily at-a-glance update of over 2 dozen manufactured housing industry stocks.

This segment of the Daily Business News on MHProNews is the recap of yesterday evening’s market report, so that investors can see at glance the type of topics may have influenced other investors. Thus, our format includes our signature left (CNN Business) and right (Newsmax) ‘market moving’ headlines.

The macro market moves graphics below provide context and comparisons for those invested in or tracking manufactured housing connected equities. Meaning, you can see ‘at a glance’ how manufactured housing connected firms do compared to other segments of the broader equities market.

In minutes a day readers can get a good sense of significant or major events while keeping up with the trends that may be impacting manufactured housing connected investing.

Headlines from left-of-center CNN Business – 5.8.2024

  • Cyberattack disrupts operations at major US health care network
  • Roblox has a stunning 70 million users, but it still has to prove itself to Wall Street
  • Biden takes aim at Trump for failed Foxconn project with visit to Microsoft’s new site in Wisconsin
  • Tesla tells its German factory workers to stay home as more protests loom
  • AstraZeneca withdraws Covid-19 vaccine, citing low demand
  • India has its Rockefellers and Carnegies.
  • Billionaires alone won’t turn Narendra Modi’s India into a rich country
  • For US renters, the chance of owning a home is going from bad to worse
  • Collapsed FTX says it can pay most creditors back in full
  • An aerial view of the site of the Norfolk Southern train derailment of a train carrying hazardous waste in East Palestine, Ohio, U.S., February 23, 2023.
  • What the proxy fight at Norfolk Southern means for railroad safety
  • A robot (right) passes employees working on the assembly line of a Huawei Technologies mobile phone plant in Dongguan, China, on January 15, 2019.
  • US revokes some export licenses for selling semiconductors to China’s Huawei
  • Journalist sounds alarm on dangers of propaganda, calling it ‘one of the worst crises for American democracy this century’
  • Disney just had its worst day in a year and a half
  • Following exchange with Caitlin Clark at news conference, columnist won’t cover Indiana Fever games
  • Bankrupt Steward Health puts its hospitals up for sale, discloses $9 billion in debt
  • ‘Draw a line in the sand, but don’t draw a swastika,’ Kraft foundation tells campus protesters
  • Slaughterhouse cleaning company fined $649,000 for child workers
  • Trump-appointed judges say they’ll boycott Columbia grads over university’s handling of protests
  • TikTok sues to block prospective US app ban
  • Panera is dropping Charged Lemonade, the subject of multiple wrongful death lawsuits
  • Columbia’s student journalists produced New York magazine’s cover story. Here’s how they did it
  • Apple unveils new iPad Pro with ‘outrageously powerful’ AI-powered chip
  • The new Swiss Army Knife will be missing a key feature
  • Fender benders mean serious high-tech repairs now


In instances such as Apollo, Berkshire Hathaway, Blackstone or others, manufactured housing may only be part of their corporate interests. Note: depending on your browser or device, many images in this report and others on MHProNews can be clicked to expand. Click the image and follow the prompts. For example, in some browsers/devices you click the image and select ‘open in a new window.’ After clicking that selection you click the image in the open window to expand the image to a larger size. To return to this page, use your back key, escape or follow the prompts.
Notice: MHProNews invites the firms named in these reports to respond to any concerns about possibly inaccurate information via email that identifies the concern and offers evidence that sheds a different light on the topic discussed. That said, neither MHI nor MHI publicly traded ‘insider brands’ have done so. They’ve been repeatedly invited to do so, including but not limited to an outreach on Dec 7, 2o23 and Feb 25, 2024.


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