Giving Thanks for Manufactured Housing Independents, Applauding “MHIdea!”



Disclosure.  This “MHIdea” is not about MHProNews, and predates topics and positions we’ve published in the last few years. So this Daily Business News report is just that – an article that quotes from a manufactured home industry trade group that industry legend Dick Moore conceived, and was advanced with the work of the President of Dick Moore Housing, Bob Crawford.




The purpose for the trade “alliance” Moore and Crawford inspired was to represent manufactured home retail independents.  It was articulated in several quotes we’ve pulled from their MHIdea website. The logo at the featured image at the top of this article, and that home shown, are from their website, but the headline is ours.

FYI – they don’t even know that this article is being written.

With that introduction, let’s begin with the following quote. As we often do, the bold and brown is added to directly quoted text, which was originally in black, save for the blue and red they used in MHIdea.

— from MHIdea website, with our commentary —

“IF we keep doing what we’ve been doing,

  We will keep getting what we got!”

Or this quote: 

We must come together as an industry fighting for its very existence,

and we must do so very soon, or we may not be able to

change our current direction and momentum.” 

And consider this quote:

MHIdea was initially conceived as a trade organization for independent retail dealers.  Multi-billion dollar manufactured housing corporations have definite advantages not available to many independent manufacturers and retailers, and MHIdea was seen as, and remains to be, an excellent opportunity for these independents to enjoy some of those benefits

However, the developments of the recent months have shown the desperate need of an industry voice that can bring our united message to the consumer and to our legislating agenciesMHIdea can provide the conduit for that message.

Many of the issues we face today arose from the world of shadows that has been the recent inner-workings of HUD.  A strong, national Alliance such as MHIdea could shine the light of truth onto the inequitable dealings of HUD and provide the check and balance so sorely missing in the DC arena.” 

Was the Dick Moore and Bob Crawford inspired MHIdea ahead of its time?

Before diving deeper, let’s post a video interview of Dick Moore, below. It reveals his significant success, and fascinating historic insights.



With that better understanding of Moore as a backdrop, backdrop, consider the following quote from their dated site.

MHIdea has a multi-pronged plan of action:


Investigate HUD’s policies and actions of HUD personnel

for Legal Compliance and the legal options available

to us if non-compliance is found;


Defend the position of the independent street retail

sales center owner, before Congress and local govt’s;


Educate the consumer about the benefits of modern-day MH living;


Advocate the interests of Alliance members & the MH Industry.


A coordinated plan of action for our industry

is critically important to our future.

Then there is this quote:

The manufactured housing industry faces many challenges in the coming years.  But with great challenges come great opportunities, and MHIDEA is here to help independent dealers across American enjoy them more!

This quote is humble, but wise.

Whether the voice is MHIdea or some other is immaterial.

The need for such a voice is undeniable!



“IF we keep doing what we’ve been doing,

          We will keep getting what we got!”


There may be a fact glitch here and there on the MHIdea website. But the thrust of the thought process appears sound. For example. 

“…The challenge concerning retail financing is further aggravated by HUD and other agencies working against the best interests of both the consumer base which could benefit from our product and industry members themselves, from the manufacturers and parts suppliers to the retail sales personnel.  The lack of help coming from Washington, DC is glaring, with HUD boldly operating in violation of its federal mandate…” i.e: the Manufactured Housing Improvement Act of 2000.   ICYMI, or want a refresher later, the next link is from MHProNews, and not from MHIdea

Two Great Laws Already on the Books NOW, Can Unlock Billion$ Annually for Manufactured Housing Industry Businesse$, Investor$ – Daily Business News

Tweet Stating the Obvious for Clarity. Manufactured housing professionals are busy doing what they do, day-by-day. People go to work, invest in, or own a business in order to earn a good living. With the affordable housing crisis, the manufactured home (MH) industry ought to be doing far better than it is.

Before returning to items from MHIdea, it must be noted that recent data reflects that about 1/3 of manufactured homes are going into land-lease communities. The other 2/3 are predominantly being sold by retailers, although FEMA orders and some going to developers are a periodic part of the mix.  Rephrased, retailers are still the bulk of new HUD code manufactured home sales.

Vertically integrated companies, such as Clayton Homes, and to a lesser extent, Skyline-Champion and Cavco Industries, are among those who sell to independents, but also have their own retail operations.

Other semi-vertical integrated firms exist, for example, Legacy Housing,  or American HomeStar. Legacy sells to independents and communities, but also has its own retail centers.

That said, let’s return to content from MHIdea, because this next quote speaks volumes.

“…One body has become overloaded with members representing factions of our industry that are financiallybetter poised to weather the regulatory storms on the horizon, almost to the point of a technical monopoly.  MHI [i.e.: Manufactured Housing Institute] has no real incentive and apparently not much interest to work hard for the small independent retailer sales centers.  Some of their recent efforts appear to be motivated by industry members’ frustration at their previous inactions.”  That wasn’t written by MHProNews, or Marty Lavin, or Frank Rolfe.  That’s the view from a pair who have a retail operation, and only recently sold their communities, which accounted for over 25,000 mobile and manufactured homes sold over the years. 

Put differently, Dick Moore’s and Bob Crawford’s perspective is not to be taken lightly. 

Their commentary continues: “Our other representative group, MHARR, is Danny Ghorbani.   His writings have been steadfastly on the side of the retailers, but too often he has been the lone voice in the wilderness...”

When an observation has merit, it is often timeless. Note that this was done circa 2009/2010.


 With the above graphic and shipment levels in mind, let’s cite another quote from MHIdea:

The dismal report of total shipments in 2009, the continued lack of substantive progress from the recent MHI meeting, the continued depressed condition of the economy and its effect on our customer base all weigh heavily on the future of our business.   Our needs have NOT been adequately represented before Congress or the various federal regulatory agencies we are forced to deal with; our product has NOT been successfully marketed to our customer base in a time when our product is ideally suited to provide a much-needed commodity; our industry has NOT had a voice to speak with an unbiased voice for the benefit of ALL.  

MHIdea can provide that voice.  MHIdea personnel will be autonomous from any manufacturer or retailer associate.  We will speak for the benefit of the Alliance, with no favoritism to any one.  We will speak nationally through the Internet, video and other media productions.  We can provide a unique marketing logo supported with national advertising and PR efforts, to help our local retailer associate member’s improve their market recognition.”

MHProNews did provide at that time some coverage for their effortBut in candor, we didn’t see then all that we do now.

MHIdea had a solid concept. It could have used some refinement. It needed to have what we said yesterday about the #NobleNotMobile concept.  Namely, it will have to be given ongoing, sustained support and commitment.

#NobleNotMobile, New Contest and Video Program Launched, Exclusive Details – Daily Business News

Tweet As the Daily Business News on MHProNews signaled on Sunday, a new program is being promoted that aims to help change the image of manufactured homes. In an on-the-record email, Mike Bullard, communications director for ROC USA said as follows to MHProNews’ publisher, L. A.

Over two years ago, Bob Crawford, speaking off the cuff at Tunica, once more addressed the industry’s needs. He mentioned the MHIdea in the video posted below the photo.  If you listen to what Frank Rolfe and Bob Crawford had to say, and none of this was rehearsed or planned, its amazingly insightful – even today.


Several community owners have come to a similar conclusion that Dick Moore and Bob Crawford did, over 8 years ago. One might question this or that, but isn’t the concept worth highlighting?  One more time, let’s quote from their now dated website, but that they correctly kept online.


IF we keep doing what we’ve been doing,

           We will keep getting what we got”


Today, let’s give thanks for all of the independents in the manufactured home industry. In the days ahead, we can reflect beyond thanks towards positive action. We Provide, You Decide.” © ## (News, analysis, and commentary.)

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