When the manufactured home industry was just marginally up from its 2009-2010 low point, Green Court Partners (GCP) Chairman Randy Rowe issued what was dubbed a five-point plan for manufactured home industry recovery. It is one of a collection of several years of classic interviews with manufactured home industry professionals found on MHProNews. Rowe’s interview with that plan discussion is linked above, but a follow up is found at this link here.
Rowe and his colleagues asserted that they themselves more or less modeled their own plan. That is subject to debate, of course.
But what is clear is that Rowe and his colleagues succeeded in building a portfolio of manufactured home land-lease communities. They were eventually sold to Sun Communities. Now, the folks at GCP are building a new portfolio, which they will likely want to sell to a larger consolidator. That cons consolidator will likely also be – like Sun and GCP – a part of the Monopolistic Housing Institute (MHI). Err, oops, their actual name is Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI), but they are also known as the Manufactured Hypocrisy Institute (MHI), and the Machiavellian Housing Institute (MHI). The reasons for such monikers are illustrated the headlines for the week that was from May 1-May 8, 2022, found below.
What about that revised 5 point plan?
First, any plan has to be based upon sound information. The original 5-point plan was arguably based upon a flawed premise. MHI is not about the recovery of all segments of the manufactured housing industry, despite their assertions. Given yet another recent opportunity to explain their failures to perform and lack of accountability, MHI staff and corporate leaders and their attorneys again made no response. While that is their God given and constitutionally protected right to avoid self-incriminating statements, it is also leaves a prima facile case of their apparently corrupt behavior unanswered.
Oh, the joy!
The new 5-point plan for an AUTHENTIC, ROBUST and Sustainable Industry (ARSI) Recovery ought to look something like this.
1). Recognition of the reality that Manufactured Housing ought to collectively be doing numerous times its current levels of performance. Nor can MHI deny it since their previous staff leader admitted it knowing he was being video recorded.
2). Recognize that there is only one active national trade group in manufactured housing that is making anything like a serious effort to fight for the industry’s independents and growth potential. See Mark Weiss, J.D., President and CEO of the Manufactured Housing Association for Regulatory Reform (MHARR) in the comments published in our latest mainstream media press release – linked below – and also on MHLivingNews.
3). It is certainly possible for one or more independents to flex their own messaging, advocacy, and legal muscles in their own respective state(s). But for producers of HUD Code manufactured homes that are not already MHARR members, they should investigate and join that group. MHARR, in our humble but expert view, are demonstrably the only national trade group fighting for the independents of the manufactured home industry without sacrificing the interests of the consumers of affordable housing. Contrast MHARR with the Machiavellian Housing Institute (MHI), which continues to posture and talk about access and political clout, who attended what event, without their actually performing on the ultimate measurables. What are those measurables? How about the dwindling numbers of manufactured home communities? The severe loss of manufactured home independent retailers? Or the relatively low number of manufactured homes sold in 2021 compared to the last high-water mark year of 1998? If the Machiavellians of “the Institute” are so grand, then why are there thousands of fewer land-lease communities today than in 2000? Why were there thousands of fewer retailers and producers today – along with fewer manufactured homes sold in 2021 than there was in 2005? The Machiavellians posturing is absurd when considered in light of the objective facts! But as noted, those not yet MHARR members ought to consider the increased power and new potential accomplishments which that authentic trade group could enjoy simply by gaining new members.
4). But what about non-manufactured home producers? What about the retailers, communities, suppliers, transporters, installers, financial services firms and others that don’t build (or build exclusively) HUD Code manufactured homes? Those are the so-called “post-production sector.” Those in post-production should consider the MHARR model and establish their own post-production trade group to support instead of MHI. What is that MHARR model? There are several elements. But among them is this. MHARR doesn’t necessarily tout their members by name, unless it is sought. That is one option for those who fear being openly opposed to MHI and their arguably predatory members, such as Clayton Homes, 21st Mortgage Corporation, Vanderbilt Mortgage and Finance IVMF) or others that are Berkshire Hathaway owned brands. But the case can be made that there are different types of predators among MHI members, or who are members of MHI “state affiliates.” Do professional white hats with a conscience that care about consumer and resident satisfaction really want to ‘share membership’ with others that are the periodic subject of state, media, and consumer ire? What do the white hat companies of whatever size share in common with black hat brands that are stirring up increased headwinds for the balance of manufactured housing? What do the dues accomplish for those who are contributing to trade organizations that won’t enforce their own codes of professional conduct?
5) There essence of the new 5 point plan is this. There are savvy pushback strategies that include telling the good news about modern manufactured homes while spotlighting the obvious differences between predatory ‘black hats’ and white (or even gray…) hat professionals. The Bright Line Distinction must be painted by those who want to see the industry grow in a robust yet sustainable way and who care about seeing consumers benefit. After all, the traditional model of honest American business is to serve others in a way that they send their friends so they get served well too.
That there is an apparent and growing sense of discomfort for white hats in MHVille; apparent for those with the eyes to see. Then, there is the apparent failure of the efforts of a few states that have tried to ‘promote’ the industry without pushing back against black hat behavior is demonstrably feckless. Want evidence? See the case study below. Facts are nettlesome things to those who can’t or won’t deal with the reality exposed by the evidence. Facts this outrageous can lead to satirical opportunities aplenty.
The political winds are changing in America. In the absence of an active national post-production trade group, MHProNews and our MHLivingNews.com sister site nevertheless do what journalists are supposed to do. Namely, shine the light of accountability onto problematic behaviors so as to stir up public attention.
Monopolistic Housing Institute leaders have been asked once more to account for their behaviors. They have once more failed to step up to the plate. So be it. They – and by the grace of God, we – have given witness to the fact that even open pushback is possible!
Haven’t they exposed their own hypocrisy, Machiavellian behavior, and illicit and arguably illegal market manipulations long enough?
But our outreach to mainstream media continues.
What about the GCP’s of the world? Do they think the behavior of one of Rowe’s key team mates has been forgotten? Time will tell.
Manufactured housing has the potential for producing and selling half-a-million new homes plus a year, even in the current environment. The case could be made that double that number annually is possible. But without question, the evidence from California with respect to state level preemption on often factory-built accessory dwelling units (ADUs) demonstrates what is possible in MHVille.
There is simply no other pro-white hat growth trade media in manufactured housing that has long touted the opportunities that are also equally focused on presenting the evidence of black hat corruption and publicly calling it to account.
It is the so-called ‘big boys’ in our industry that are fearful of what could happen if the political winds in D.C. and states across the country continue to change.
2022 is a midterm election year.
- Look at what has occurred in Virginia in late 2021.
- Look at what is taking place in Florida and other states that are pushing back against the kleptocracy and federal corporate fascists.
- Look at how stocks on big tech have fallen. America is waking up. See the headlines for the week that was for examples.
- Don’t miss today’s postscript.
With no further adieu, here are the MHVille headlines for the week that was, from 5.1 to 5.8.2022.
What’s New on MHLivingNews
What’s New from Washington, D.C. from MHARR
What’s New on the Masthead
What’s Recent on the Words of Wisdom by Tim Connor, CSP
What’s New on the Daily Business News on MHProNews
Can Manufactured Housing Institute, Key MHI Firms Duck Accountability to Members, Shareholders, Stakeholders with Head-Fakes, Unkept Promises? Surprising Insights; plus, Sunday Weekly MH Headlines Review
First, as a programming note, don’t miss tomorrow morning’s report. It will be one more reminder why savvy, long-term white hat thinkers in the manufactured home industry needs to engage in that revised 5 point plan sooner than later.
And now, a reminder of just how easy the case can be made that MHI is either corrupt or massively ineffective at doing what they claim to do, including policing their own through their laughably unused Code of Ethical Conduct.
Or the Machiavellians equally problematic Antitrust Guidelines (LOL, roll on the floor, what a joke! 😉).
“In 2015, Green Courte sold its American Land Lease portfolio of 59 manufactured housing communities to Sun Communities (NYSE: SUI) for $1.32 billion. The communities totaled over 19,000 sites — 73% of which were age restricted.” So said Senior Housing News.
Randy, Randy, Randy, ain’t MHI just dandy! ##
Stay tuned for more from your primary source for manufactured home “Industry News, Tips, and Views Pros Can Use” © which provides actionable “Intelligence for your MHLife.” © See what will be revealed and planned to counter the corruption revealed here in the days ahead.
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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.
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