“Trailerpalooza” to Manufactured Homes “Boomerang” Effect – Affordable Housing Crisis, Nov 2021 Manufactured Housing Production Data – 2022 SWOT Analysis – Housing Crisis Spells Danger and Opportunity


“When written in Chinese, the word “crisis” is composed of two characters – one represents danger and one represents opportunity.” – John F. Kennedy, per the JFK Library. Per Investopedia, a “SWOT (strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats) analysis is a framework used to evaluate a company’s,” person’s or industry’s competitive position. This look at the latest manufactured home industry data will be framed against illustrated insights. The understanding gleaned by reflecting on the evolution from the ‘trailerpalooza’ and mobile home eras, into early manufactured housing (starting June 15, 1976) and finally into the modern manufactured home era. Given the widely acknowledged affordable housing crisis, why are HUD Code manufactured homes performing at only about 30 percent of the industry’s last highwater mark in 1998? Given the need for millions of new housing units, per an array of governmental and nonprofit sources, why has it taken so long for manufactured housing to perhaps cross the 100,000 annual production mark in 2021 for the first time in over a dozen years? Those are topics considered following the official data collected for the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). The HUD data for total November 2021 new manufactured housing production is as reported by the Manufactured Housing Association for Regulatory Reform (MHARR). MHARR has also provided some related shipment data.




The facts and information from MHARR will be followed by a 2022-framed manufactured home industry “boomerang effect” reality check.  An insight from this classic ad below will be woven into the analysis and commentary that follows.




FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                                                     Contact: MHARR

                                                                                                                              (202) 783-4087



Washington, D.C., January 5, 2022 – The Manufactured Housing Association for Regulatory Reform (MHARR) reports that according to official statistics compiled on behalf of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), HUD Code manufactured housing industry year-over-year production increased again in November 2021. Just-released statistics indicate that HUD Code manufacturers produced 9,069 homes in November 2021, a 13.4% increase over the 7,996 new HUD Code homes produced during November 2020. Cumulative production for 2021 now totals 97,758 homes, a 12.6% increase over the 86,757 homes produced over the same period in 2020.

A further analysis of the official industry statistics shows that the top ten shipment states from the beginning of the industry production rebound in August 2011 through November 2021 — with cumulative, monthly, current year (2021) and prior year (2020) shipments per category as indicated — are:




The November 2021 data results in no changes to the cumulative top-ten shipment list.

In Washington, D.C., MHARR President and CEO, Mark Weiss, stated: “Notwithstanding the discriminatory zoning barriers and consumer financing challenges that continue to negatively impact the availability of affordable manufactured housing, 2021 industry production appears poised to surpass the 100,000 homes annual benchmark. If this comes to fruition it would mark the first time since 2006 that the industry has exceeded this historically-significant production level. While this is obviously a positive development that illustrates the strength and resilience of the HUD Code industry as the premier source of non-subsidized affordable housing for lower and moderate-income American families, any celebrations must be tempered with recognition of the continuing headwinds that the industry and consumers face going forward, including not only zoning and financing issues, but other regulatory matters as well, including the threat of excessive, high-cost DOE energy standards.”

The Manufactured Housing Association for Regulatory Reform is a Washington, D.C.-based national trade association representing the views and interests of independent producers of federally-regulated manufactured housing.

— 30 –

This topic was raised some 18 months ago. It is still relevant today. The value of evidence-based and factual content is that it stands the test of time. Good information can be the basis for positive action, thoughtful analysis of performance, and for leadership’s accountability too. https://www.manufacturedhomepronews.com/prophetic-words-by-industry-pros-manufactured-home-factories-retailers-communities-regulatory-financing-trends-swot/
From 10′ wides decades over a half-century ago, to 12′, 14′, 16′ and finally 18′ sections in some states, there has been a steady evolution of such affordable factory-built housing. Masthead/MHProNews Note 1) In the early 1980s, there were still manufactured home producers that were building elevated kitchens and master bedroom single-section floorplans. In the 1950s-1970s, there were hundreds of producers of mobile homes. That continued on in the post-HUD Code part of the later 1970s (post June 15, 1976) and into the 1980s in the transition from mobile to manufactured housing. When there are more competitors, it is often true that there is more innovation. As the number of producers dropped sharply in the post 2009 meltdown of independent manufactured home producers, the willingness of remaining producers to innovate in such designs declined too. Coincidence or to be expected, based on historic patterns? Note 2: In the 1950s and for years afterward, there were numerous ads that were marketing the then mobile home lifestyle to the general public. See more ads like this further below. When there is more advertising, and more positive articles about living in factory-built homes, is it any surprise that there were more sales too? More on this below.
Ironically, Skyline Champion’s own investor pitch-deck provides ample evidence for manufactured housing industry underperformance. That same pitch-deck further provides evidence that Mergers and Acquisitions are a key part of their business model.  Notice: Several of the illustrations shown in this report can be opened in many browsers to reveal a larger size. To open this picture, click the image once. When the window opens, click it again to reveal the larger size photo. Use your browsers back, escape key to return to the article, or follow your browser’s prompts.
This report provides useful third-party data with expert analysis that sheds light on the stark underperformance of the modern manufactured home industry. https://www.manufacturedhomepronews.com/what-does-automotive-market-data-in-the-covid19-era-tell-affordable-housing-advocates-and-manufactured-housing-professionals-plus-manufactured-home-markets-stock-updates/
When a manufactured Housing Institute senior staffer or corporate leader communicates a claim, that should be checked against the evidence and trends. Over time, by examining their respective statements, a sort of boomerang effect becomes visible. Beyond such a test are the research results of outsiders looking into manufactured housing. James A. “Jim” Schmitz Jr, senior Minneapolis Federal Reserve Researcher, is among those who have studied manufactured housing and the underperformance of the industry during a well-documented affordable housing crisis. Schmitz and Samuel “Sam” Strommen, while forming unique fact and evidence-based arguments, both have asserted that manufactured housing has been deliberately subverted.


SWOT – and the Boomerang Effect – Additional Information, MHProNews Analysis and Commentary

American Psychological Association (APA) defines the Boomerang effect as follows. The “boomerang effect a situation in which a persuasive message produces attitude change in the direction opposite to that intended.”

Marketing 91 says:

  • “The boomerang effect is the opposite or negative outcome of an attempted attitude change. It occurs when you receive the unintended consequence of your effort to persuade someone that lets you face a contrary position.
  • For example, if you try to change the prejudices of a community aggressively and it drives community peopleto harden their prejudiced stance then this would be the result of the boomerang effect or negative attitude change.”

Another way to look at the boomerang effect is this. After a person or organization makes a statement, claim, or assertion is made – and it is later analyzed at face value – do the words later come back and ‘strike’ the person or organization that made the claim in a helpful or harmful way?

Let’s briefly apply this principle to manufactured housing.

It is often Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) staff or corporate leadership who have made certain statements as to their goals and plans. Those claims are then subject to later recall to see how their words matched their deeds or the actual outcomes.

As was noted above, in the 1950s-1970s, there were hundreds of producers of mobile homes. That continued on in the post-HUD Code part of the later 1970s (post June 15, 1976) and into the 1980s in the transition from mobile to manufactured housing. When there are more competitors, it is often true that there is more innovation. Following the entry of Berkshire Hathaway into the manufactured home industry, the numbers of producers of HUD Code manufactured housing collapsed in the post 2009 meltdown of independent manufactured home producers. Fewer producers in any profession usually means less innovation, as several on both sides of the left-right divide point out. The rich history of the evolution of manufactured housing from the trailers and mobile homes of decades ago is largely absent from the MHI website. 
For facts in the context of illustrations and two video interviews, see https://www.manufacturedhomelivingnews.com/saving-time-money-hassles-how-can-you-buy-a-manufactured-home-without-encountering-problems-pissed-consumer-video-interview-of-l-a-tony-kovach-on-manufactured-housing/ and https://www.manufacturedhomelivingnews.com/all-the-truth-about-manufactured-homes-facts-comparisons-between-trailer-houses-mobile-homes-manufactured-homes-and-conventional-housing/


Also, MHI corporate leaders who have had to admit that manufactured housing is misunderstood. That is a kind of boomerang indictment of their own leadership.

  • By admitting the reality that the industry is not achieving its potential, MHI leaders and staff, past and present, are pointing at a fact that sees three fingers pointing back at themselves.
  • By MHI leaders advertising that they have clout, and demonstrating their access to high level public officials, yet failing to achieve the implementation of the favorable manufactured housing laws they claim they support, a natural boomerang effect has occurred.
  • When MHI points out that it was litigation that caused the pause in implementation of Biden vax mandates, the boomerang effect is this. Why hasn’t MHI sued to get the laws they claim they want enforced to actually be enforced?

There is an array of such “boomerangs” that are arguably striking MHI’s self-proclaimed leadership.

There is an array of disconnects between MHI’s words and the outcomes.

That said, the article linked below reflects a new research and reporting effort to shake up the status quo. This is part of the boomerang back at MHI.




Manufactured Housing Leadership Accountability and Growth-Oriented Solutions Project

As with any planted seed, the growth and effects of the above linked are likely to initially be subtle.  But this next phase of a multipronged effort has a simple yet profound goal. To provide white hat and honorable growth minded industry professionals with a proven pathway toward growth.

Stating the obvious can be clarifying and liberating. All sales are local. While national or even state level-data is interesting and useful, nothing is more relevant to a company or professional than what is occurring in the specific market(s) that the individual or firm is operating in.

That report above spells out the dangers from not acting, but also the opportunities to tap into the leadership vacuum that predominantly ‘leading’ MHI member industry firms allowed the industry to be trapped in a 2 decade plus cycle of underperformance.

The only way to change the results is to change the dynamics. MHProNews and our MHLivingNews sister site – in conjunction with selected operations, will be establishing the next phase of an already well-established foundation in manufactured housing trade media leadership.

Beyond the plan for more routine media releases that will showcase the good, bad, and meh in manufactured housing in a factual and authentic fashion, MHProNews will periodically provide mainstream and specialized media sources with columns that will be designed to open the eyes of their readers beyond our own profession.

This process that will set the stage for the educational, legal, marketing, and other efforts that can take manufactured housing over time in a more positive and robust growth direction.

One must never forget that the manufactured home industry used to outsell RVs by a ratio of some 3 to 2 in 1998. The RV Industry formed the GoRVing campaign in the 1990s, while MHI leaders dithered and talked about doing something similar for years. Today, the RV industry outsells manufactured housing by a ratio of some 4 to 1 over manufactured housing. This is one of a series of data-point that MHProNews will utilize in order to press for positive change and/or legal accountability for those in leadership at MHI and/or their state association affiliates. In 2020, the GoRVing campaign claims over 310 million were exposed to their marketing. Unlike MHI claims, the RV industry has the sales results that back up their boasts.

Early in the 21st century, the leadership at the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) was different than today. The photo on the top right is of former MHI President and CEO Chris Stinebert. Stinebert and then Manufactured Housing Association for Regulatory Reform (MHARR) President and CEO Danny Ghorbani worked together to get the Manufactured Housing Improvement Act of 2000 (MHIA) passed into law. For a time, MHI and MHARR worked in tandem to get aspects of that law enforced. By coincidence or design, following the entry in 2002 of Berkshire Hathaway into the manufactured housing production sector, the leadership at MHI began to change. Stinebert Left in 2006, perhaps seeing from within the handwriting on the wall. The decline of manufactured housing continued, despite the parting advice of Stinebert to manufactured housing. Fast-forward to 2018. MHI declared ‘momentum,’ but instead of modest growth there was a 2.5 year overall downward trend in total manufactured housing production. Finally, that downward trend reversed in March 2021. The data and related insights are preserved at this link here. https://www.manufacturedhomepronews.com/years-of-state-national-level-manufactured-housing-factual-data-find-your-states-production-shipment-info-here-troubling-manufactured-home-affordable-housing-trends-issues-and-fact-checks/

Let’s note that Berkshire Hathaway has serious interests in the RV and automotive industries. Berkshire has big interests in conventional housing, not just manufactured housing.  So Berkshire’s interest in Clayton Homes, their affiliated lending has to be considered in that broader picture. There are so many examples of success in other industries, that experience, logic, and corporate pronouncements on consolidation have to all be taken seriously. The logical conclusion is that when publicly traded MHI members boast of consolidating a fragmented industry, that is what should be taken at face value. Those companies are walking their talk. It is MHI that has the disconnect. That boomerang effect is hitting home, pardon the pun.


While some of the data in this linked report is now dated, the related facts and analysis stand as being as useful today as it was then. See the insights from conventional and modular housing in this report. https://www.manufacturedhomepronews.com/masthead/marketplaces-s2as-insights-september-2021-manufactured-housing-production-shipment-data-pesky-fact-potential-promise-penetrating-analysis/


MHProNews/MHLivingNews, can, have, and will report on such matters. But additionally, we will be providing a protentional path ahead for those white had professionals and brands that are tired of the years of broken and failed promises. Happy talk fatigue is exemplified by Marty Lavin, who told MHProNews about the latest ‘happy talk’ article on why the public should consider manufactured homes: “I first saw this story in 1972 and it is repeated every year since, or at least the same general theme. A shame it never comes to pass.”

Why have so many MHI claims failed to be achieved? The case can be made that the root issues that keep the public, and thus others, from responding have never been properly addressed by MHI. Additionally, the case can be made that MHI is working for consolidators, and not for the industry at large, as they claim. Neither of these claims have been refuted by MHI. The boomerang of years of talk with no result is coming home to roost.

MHProNews/MHLivingNews will continue to report and promote accountability. But additionally, we will be promoting the alternative that white hat manufactured housing professionals can tap into to achieve growth on the local level.

Spartan Mobile Homes were built in Tulsa, OK. A Spartan is on display at the RV MH Hall of Fame. Today, that firm and dozens of others are just a historic memory. Many of those brands survived into the 2000s but were lost following the letter linked here that was issued by 21st Mortgage Corp president and CEO, Tim Williams. MHProNews Note: depending on your browser or device, many images in this report can be clicked to expand. Click the image and follow the prompts. To return to this page, use your back key, escape or follow the prompts.

Stay tuned for more as this plan evolves in 2022.

To sign up for our industry-leading x2 emailed news updates, click here or the link further below.

To learn more about opportunities for ‘white hat’ organizations that are seeking growth with high customer satisfaction, click here.

For inspirational and pragmatic tips from a respected professional, click here.

Here’s to shaking things up in 2022 by directly challenging the status quo and so-called industry leaders that have demonstrably failed – per the hard facts, evidence, comparisons, and data! – to have moved manufactured housing anywhere near the industry’s potential. ##





50th Anniversary Celebration Year – Sunshine Homes 1971-2021 – From Mobile Homes to HUD Code Manufactured Homes and Modular Homes – A Romp Through Key Phases in Manufactured Home History



Stay tuned for more of what is ‘behind the curtains’ as well as what is obvious and in your face reporting that are not found anywhere else in MHVille. It is all here, which may explain why this is the runaway largest and most-read source for authentic manufactured home “News through the lens of manufactured homes and factory-built housing” © where “We Provide, You Decide.” © ## (Affordable housing, manufactured homes, reports, fact-checks, analysis, and commentary. Third-party images or content are provided under fair use guidelines for media.) (See Related Reports, further below. Text/image boxes often are hot-linked to other reports that can be access by clicking on them.)

All on Capitol Hill were welcoming and interested with the discussion of manufactured housing related issues on our 12.3.2019 meetings. But Texas Congressman Al Green’s office was tremendous in their hospitality. Our son’s hand is on a package that included the Constitution of the United States and other goodies. MHProNews has worked with people and politicos across the left-right divide.

By L.A. “Tony” Kovach – for MHProNews.com.

Tony earned a journalism scholarship and earned numerous awards in history and in manufactured housing.

For example, he earned the prestigious Lottinville Award in history from the University of Oklahoma, where he studied history and business management. He’s a managing member and co-founder of LifeStyle Factory Homes, LLC, the parent company to MHProNews, and MHLivingNews.com.

This article reflects the LLC’s and/or the writer’s position, and may or may not reflect the views of sponsors or supporters.


Connect on LinkedIn: http://www.linkedin.com/in/latonykovach


Related References:

The text/image boxes below are linked to other reports, which can be accessed by clicking on them.

The 2.5 year overall downward trend finally reversed in March 2021, but the data is preserved at this link here. https://www.manufacturedhomepronews.com/years-of-state-national-level-manufactured-housing-factual-data-find-your-states-production-shipment-info-here-troubling-manufactured-home-affordable-housing-trends-issues-and-fact-checks/



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