An independent manufactured home retailer walked up to the Daily Business News team in Tunica Wednesday to say, “thank you” for the depth of coverage of the industry’s news.
A HUD Code home producer said, “I wish you’d tone it down a bit,” on the controversies, while expressing “appreciation for the unrivaled coverage of industry events not found anywhere else” in the manufactured home industry’s trade media.
Another independent retailer and his family approached the MHProNews squad during the lunchtime hospitality. He wanted to give his family and team members a chance to discuss what’s been taking place on finance related issues, such as the Government Sponsored Enterprises (GSEs) Duty to Serve (DTS).
A long-time Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) member said, “you [MHProNews] were right about HUD, Pam Danner, and Lois Starkey,” but took exception to the controversy surrounding the so-called “new class” of manufactured homes that MHI is promoting.
Meanwhile, a veteran factory-built housing professional that had previously been “open minded” about MHI’s project for a “new class” of manufactured homes has after reading and doing his own research, turned against the plan (see Related Reports, linked below, for more details about these hot topics, plus more from the 2018 Tunica Show).
Rephrasing, the comments and reactions to the industry’s issues have run the gamut. From management team members in the industry’s biggest companies, to mom and pop operations and all others in between, the data and engagement reflects the pragmatic respect given to this MH Industry trade media resource.
We are not wearing bold branded t-shirts, ball-caps or neon signs in Tunica. Part of what’s noteworthy is that lacking any identification of MHProNews other than the Tunica Show’s badge – which the wind routinely whips around – many professionals are eager to engage and express their views to the manufactured housing industry’s most popular and independent trade news.
“You’ve Got to Read This…”
Walking through a display model for a new HUD Code producer, a retailer and his colleague from Texas engaged with us. “I used to forward your news emails to” his partner, with the message – “You’ve got to read this.” Then he shared later email news updates, saying, “You’ve got to see this and read this one too.” That went on for some time, until his colleague signed up for his own email news.
That same Texan said “We’re giving the giants a run for their money” in his market area.
They were looking for a non-Clayton producer to buy new homes from. “Why?” was our question. “Because of the issues raised in stories you’re reporting on, like the long-lead times” post-Harvey in Texas.
“You sure do keep it stirred up,” opined a straight-faced industry professional, who paused – adding “keep it up” – followed by a slight smile.
“Tony, I read every emailed news update, from top to bottom” said another retailer, with exhibitors and community professionals often saying something similar.
Upbeat, But Aware…
Attendance is up slightly over last year, say show sources.
Rain on Tuesday didn’t dampen traffic in the display homes, said several manufacturing exhibitors. Wednesday was windy, but warmer and sunny. Traffic in the homes was brisk.
The mood of attendees has been overall upbeat, association executives, and exhibitors told the Daily Business News. Comments from attendees made directly to the MHProNews confirmed those observations.
“We’re more upbeat about the industry in some ways, but we are also more aware of the trajectory of the industry toward consolidation,” said an attendee. “Those who don’t plan according to reality are in denial.”
Everyone Knows Your Name…
As one attendee said after another industry mom and pop couple stopped us to say hi, “It’s like a line out of the TV comedy, Cheers – where everyone knows your name.”
“Your son is getting taller, and stronger” said one after getting a hand-shake from Tamas Kovach.
The industry’s professionals “are hungry for real news, not happy talk” explained a factory-producer.
One attendee pointed to stacks of a new trade publication in high-visibility racks near the exhibit hall. They appeared to be untouched. “It’s not ‘rah rah’ that will help a company navigate the challenging waters of the industry,” said an exhibitor.
The feedback in many ways confirms what calls and messages to MHProNews between events likewise reflects.
Naturally, not everyone agrees with everything that is spotlighted by our pro-industry publications. But reader feedback, along with analytical data, reflects the dominance of MHProNews over other trade media. Candid, fact-base reports and analysis are reasons routinely cited by pros.
A post-Tunica report will be coming soon, which will break new ground on issues ranging from:
- manufactured home lending,
- association related,
- new class of homes,
- ongoing “consolidation” of the industry – and possible steps to address that challenge,
- HUD and regulators at all levels,
- marketing, sales, and image related issues, plus more.
It’s part of manufactured housing’s leading “Industry News, Tips and Views Pros Can Use.” ©
The Tunica Show in 2018 has thus far confirmed what the Louisville Show did earlier this year. With the affordable housing crisis raging, how is it possible that the manufactured home industry sunk to such a low ebb? Why are HUD Code manufactured homes only rising slowly from it’s bottom in 2009?
It was summed up late last year by an industry executive, who said. “Tony, if MHProNews is writing about it, I want to know about it.” ## (News, analysis and commentary.)
Not necessarily in this order of importance, but count us as true believers in: Manufactured Homes, America as a Constitutional Republic with free enterprise, and in the four F’s – Faith, Family, Flag, and Fortune (career). Count me as a pragmatist too.
(Third party images, cites are provided under fair use guidelines.)
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