MHMSM.com presents Factory Built Housing Industry News at Noon with Erin Patla.
We begin with these stories:
PRESIDENT OBAMA Monday urged Congress to “rise above the politics of the moment” and pass the jobs bill that is currently stalled in the Senate as soon as members return from their recess in September. According to the president, the Small Business Jobs and Credit Act, which features tax cuts and incentives for small business, would help small businesses get loans and would encourage investment spending by eliminating capital gains taxes on certain kinds of investments.
ANOTHER HOMEBUYER TAX CREDIT is not out of the question, HUD Secretary Shaun Donovan told CNN over the weekend. “We’re going to be focused like a laser on where the housing market is moving going forward, and we are going to go everywhere we can to make sure this market stabilizes and recovers,” Donovan said. Several Congressional candidates in Florida have entertained the possibility with Florida Gov. Charlie Crist, saying he would absolutely encourage the president to support it. Donovan was also asked by CNN host Ed Henry about several recent articles questioning whether homeownership is still a good way to build wealth. Donovan responded that while homeownership is important, “we need to have a more balanced housing policy in the country. For too long, our focus at the federal level was only on homeownership to the exclusion of rental.” Donovan also told the network the administration is preparing to roll out two new measures – an FHA refinancing program targeted at underwater borrowers, and an emergency loan program aimed at helping unemployed borrowers keep their homes.
FROM CALIFORNIA, the Riverside Press-Enterprise reported that 2,000 people lined up Saturday at MVP RV, a former Fleetwood factory that used to be one of Inland Southern California’s manufacturing hubs, hoping for a job. The company was looking to hire 80 people. The previously-estimated threshold of 1,500 people was achieved by 11 a.m. One person looking for work was Robby Crean, the grandson of John Crean, the legendary founder of Fleetwood who died in 2007.
FREDDIE MAC named Subha V. Barry to head its newly formed office of diversity and inclusion. Barry will work with the company’s business units to ensure they’re maximizing opportunities in diverse markets. She will also ensure the company is utilizing diverse talent among its employees and suppliers, and developing strategies focused on the needs of a diverse work force.
“Up next, Manufactured Housing in the News…
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Now, back to our stories.
In Manufactured Housing News…
STEVE LEARY in Four Corners, Florida, is removing homes in Vista del Lago, the subdivision he started more than 20 years ago, and replacing them with new manufactured homes. TheLedger.com in Lakeland, Florida, recently ran the story. First built in 1985, Vista del Lago is a manufactured home community with about 925 homes. The property was built out more than a decade ago. Leary told the paper he has watched as nearby mobile home parks have been purchased and replaced by high-end condominiums, luxury homes. That may be fine at the top of the market, but now they’re struggling to make sales. Meanwhile Vista del Lago has not been as negatively impacted by the drop in home prices or the fallout in the housing market. “We’re a manufactured home community, which used to be called a trailer park,” Leary told the Ledger. “In this economy, we’re more affordable.”
ACCORDING TO CITY PULSE, Lansing, Michigan is finding itself unable to enforce building codes in manufactured rental homes. A report by the Public Safety Committee concludes the city is unable to perform certain building code inspections on mobile-home rental property required by state legislation passed in January. Manager of Building Safety Code and Compliance, Chris Segerlind told the paper city inspectors are not trained to inspect to the standards required in the state Mobile Home Act and could not cite for non-compliance. A second is that it would cost extra to hire part-time specialized inspectors or for potentially out-of-state training for current inspectors. Until last January, the Michigan Manufactured Housing Commission and the former Department of Environmental Quality were responsible for the safety inspections.
FROM OREGON the Newberg Graphic reports that manufactured homes in that city are a leading source of affordable housing, but zoning rules may hamper their spread. The Affordable Housing legislative subcommittee took up the discussion Thursday, with a proposal to lower the minimum size for a manufactured home community from five acres to one acre. The committee is also mulling a new residential zone, specifically for manufactured home communities Most of Newberg’s are now zoned medium-density residential (R-2), Brierley said, and legislation would create a new “R-4” zone that prospective developers could choose to opt into. The new zoning designation would not be applied retroactively by the city.
[Arizona Central] AZCENTRAL.COM reports that even though a judge suspended most of the Arizona immigration law pending appeals, Cavco will not be the recipient of a Santa Monica, California, contract worth $3 million. The Santa Monica City Council has officially canceled a $3 million contract with a Phoenix-based maker of manufactured homes to the law, even though it will likely cost the city more money. The homes were needed to replace homes in the city-owned Mountain View Mobile Home Park. Department officials estimated it would cost $250,000 to $450,000 more to buy the homes elsewhere.
In Market News…
STOCKS MOVED SHARPLY LOWER again on Wall Street Monday. The Dow closed down more than 140 points, landing on the upper edge of the 10,000 mark. Manufactured home related stocks on our watch list were universally lower. All American Group and Skyline were both down more than seven percent. Drew Industries was down more than six percent. Palm Harbor Homes and Cavco were also down. The manufactured housing composite value was down nearly four 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 MHMSM.com writing and support team, this is Erin Patla. G’day!”