Manufactured Homes in the News 100927 presents Factory Built Housing Industry News at Noon with Erin Patla.

We begin with these stories:

RADON REQUIREMENTS are seeping into the manufactured housing industry in Oregon.

Despite a HUD Code that some Manufactured Housing Industry pros would contend preempts local requirements on manufactured housing, Oregon is gearing up in the face of testing and mitigation requirements for radon.  Radon is a colorless, odorless, tasteless gas that occurs worldwide in the environment as a byproduct of the natural decay of uranium present in the earth. Radon is known to cause cancer and is present in varying quantities in the atmosphere and in soils around the world, especially where there is granite. Oregon’s Senate Bill 1025 creates new standards for radon exposure in new buildings and residences and sets radon mitigation standards to help consumers cut down their radon exposure in existing buildings. An extended InFocus report is now available at

A GROWING SEGMENT of the housing market, first-time home buyers, are contributing to an increase in demand for smaller and less expensive new homes, according to research from economists at the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB). Delving into data from the most recent biennial American Housing Survey, which was conducted by the Department of Housing and Urban Development and the Census Bureau in 2009, the study, “Characteristics of New and First-Time Home Buyers,” finds that 41 percent of the 8.4 million households who bought a home between 2007 and 2009 were first-time buyers. This news may be good for the manufactured home industry. Bob Jones, chairman of NAHB said compared to what is typically available in the existing housing stock, new homes are more energy-efficient, easier to maintain and have designs better suited to today’s lifestyles. That sounds as if Jones could have been describing a manufactured home. The average market value of a new home purchased was more than $315,000, compared to more than $238,000 for existing homes. The average sales price nationwide for a new manufactured home in 2007 ranged from $37,100 for a single-section home and $73,600 for a double-section home. The average income of first-timers in the census data was over $67,000. About half of the first-time buyers earned less than $60,000. Using $60,000 in income and $700 in other monthly obligations, the “how much home can you afford” calculator we tried came up well short of the $315,000 average new home price.

“More News continues…”

But first, this podcast of News at Noon is sponsored in part by:

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Now, back to our stories.

ALSO FROM THE NAHB, nationwide total housing starts rose 10.5 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 598,000 units in August, bringing the pace of production more in line with the level of construction activity before the popular home buyer tax credit temporarily stimulated housing sales earlier this year, according to U.S. Commerce Department figures released last week.

FROM THEHILL.COM comes a story about the strong opposition to Congress tampering with the mortgage interest deduction.  Seventy-nine percent of respondents to an NAHB survey comprised of homeowners and renters believe the federal government should provide tax incentives to promote homeownership. The consensus cuts across party lines with 76 percent of Republicans, 75 percent of Independents and 68 percent of Democrats opposing the elimination of the deduction.

Manufactured Homes in the News

FROM THE PALM BEACH POST, Floridians covered by state-run Citizens Property Insurance will pay an average of 10.3 percent more next year. The state insurance commissioner approved a more generous rate hike than the carrier requested last week. State Insurance Commissioner Kevin McCarty also ordered increases of 9.2 percent for comprehensive mobile home coverage and 9.1 percent for wind [as in breeze]-only mobile home policies. The company had proposed decreasing rates for some coastal Palm Beach County communities. The company has about 105,000 factory-built home policies active in Palm Beach County.

FROM MARLBORO, NEW JERSEY the News Transcript reports that residents of the Hamilton Park manufactured home community will have an increase in their rent paid to the township while their community receives some necessary improvements paid by the town’s affordable housing trust fund. Hamilton Park is a 25-unit manufactured home community that sits on township-owned property. Under the previous lease, Hamilton Park’s homeowners paid a total of $500 per month to lease the Spring Valley Road property from Marlboro. The new lease provides a 30-year term with a total monthly payment of $1,500 for the first year for the lease. That will increase to $2,500 per month for the second year.

FROM CINCINATTI.COM – Holiday Homes, one of the largest manufactured home retailers and developers in the Midwest, is celebrating its 40th Anniversary. Company president Dan Rolfes is recognized in the area as the “Red Tag Man.” According to the article, from its beginnings in 1968, the company’s business interests revolved around manufactured housing and mobile homes. In the mid 1980s, Rolfes began putting manufactured homes on permanent foundations and developing manufactured housing subdivisions. Today, Holiday Homes boasts combined sales of more than 200 homes per year. Their business philosophy is: “To show through our many varied projects, that manufactured housing is not a product, but a process for providing new homes.”

FROM  NORTH CAROLINA, the Laurinburg Exchange reports about a public hearing regarding four requests for specific-use permits for manufactured homes the Army Corps of Engineers said were illegally located on a flood plain. City staff there contacted the four property owners who had applied for the permits, informing them that all existing additions on the property are declared legal non-conforming uses in relationship to the zoning ordinance. Any additional expansions to the building foot print are prohibited and home owners must apply for an SUP before any new construction can begin. In 2005, the Army Corps of Engineers told several homeowners they were living on floodplains and needed to remove the structures.

In Market News…

STOCKS CLOSED FRIDAY almost two hundred points that when they opened, adding almost two percent to the Dow. All of the manufactured home-related stocks closed higher with Sun Communities, Barnes Group, Skyline Corp and UMH Properties all adding more than three percent to per-share values. The manufactured housing composite value was up 3.3 percent.

On behalf of Production and IT Manager Bob Stovall, Editor L.A. Tony Kovach, Associate Editor Catherine Frenzel, INdustry in Focus reporter Eric Miller, and the entire writing and support team, this is Erin Patla. Gday!

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