Following the public slam last fall by the Manufactured Housing Association for Regulatory Reform (MHARR) of the Washington Post report on manufactured homes last September 2021, that mainstream news outlet included by MHARR and the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) this past week. It is one of several mainstream media reports that specifically mentioned or focused on HUD Code manufactured housing. It is an example that pushback can pay off.
The USA Today published a largely positive report on manufactured homes. THE PLAN on MHProNews is to look more closely at the three of the headline news articles in the days ahead. The third article was by HousingWire, with a focus on financing. In fairness for now, each of these shared these common points. They were a mix of accurate, inaccurate, or overlooked information that directly related to their core topics.
While USA Today might be seen as the most positive among the three, what the Washington Post, and in a different way, HousingWire revealed is that even good news is routinely followed by problematic reporting. This is why voices such as MHI award winner Marty Lavin have slammed MHI for their decades of failure to mount an authentic educational and marketing campaign. Lavin has been joined by other MHI members, such as Joanne Stevens, in directly and/or obliquely slamming MHI for their failure to do what ought to be a basic common-sense step IF the trade group actually wanted to see robust, sustainable, pro-consumer industry growth. MHI cheerleader Darren Krolewski was quite correct when he said there is more bad news than good, and that it harms our industry’s performance.
The Washington Post report had a focus on energy efficiency. Will MHI respond publicly to their largely negative thesis? Time will tell. But if history’s patterns hold, notorious MHI member Frank Rolfe will be proven correct once more.
That’s sufficient to tee up the amazing array of opportunities that exist today for HUD Code Manufactured Housing. Each of the reports that follow shed light on obstacles as well as opportunities, some of which are disguised by requiring overalls to do what authentic advocates would do.
Years of reports, fact checks, analysis, and commentary could be boiled down to this. MHI and their corporate/staff leaders are either posturing and paltering, or they are massively inept. These are often people with significant and successful experiences. They are professionals with a range of academic degrees. It is thus difficult to make the case that they are simply fumbling the ball on an ongoing basis,
The balance of the analysis will be picked up in this Sunday’s postscript.
With no further adieu, here are the headlines from the reports, fact checks, analysis in the week that was between 1.16.2022 to 1.23.2022.
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
Postscript – “Do Your Job”
This writer has been in churches, cathedrals, and houses of worship in Mexico, the U.S. and Canada. I’ve been to a simple church in Hawaii to an impressive one Washington, D.C. in dozens of states, there have been a wide range of religious, social, and cultural experiences in dozens of states. That’s it bragging, in need that time due to my shortcomings and earnest desire for God’s wisdom and mercy. That sets the stage for what I saw a teenage girl in Illinois wearing in church. Our family was several rows behind her, but the back of her sweatshirt simply said in bold text – “Do Your Job.” It was as profound as it was pithy.
MHI and the industry’s leaders need to be held accountable. They need to “do their job” at MHI in a fashion that actually does benefit “all segments” of manufactured housing as they have long claimed.
About 2 decades ago, the following used to be part of MHI literature. It is no longer on the MHI website, as the check at the date and time shown reflects. MHProNews has done this periodic fact check several times in recent years, precisely to showcase the lack of consistency and measurable accomplishments MHI and their corporate/staff leaders have had since 2006.
RVs have left our industry in the dust since 1998. That’s a fact. Manufactured homes outsold RVs some 3 to 2 in 1998. Now, RVs outsell manufactured homes by some 4 to 1. That dramatic shift speaks volumes about our industry’s leadership and agenda vs. that of the RV industry.
Conventional housing dwarfs manufactured home sales even though out industry has a great story to tell. No less a figure than Joseph “Joe” Stegmayer, then MHI’s chairman, said that our industry’s story is largely is largely untold. In the sense of the good news about modern HUD a code manufactured homes being widely understood and respected, that’s arguably quite true.
But by making that statement, Stegmayer – since hit by an SEC suit – are pointing 3 fingers back at himself and MHI. As the reports linked above and the one in the weekly recap about the suit against Equity LifeStyle Properties (ELS) demonstrate, there are risks from certain types of behaviors. Only time will tell if the legal concerns uniquely and persistently raised by our publications will prove to ultimately come to life in the form of legal action. But the multiplication of lawsuits and governmental probes into manufactured housing arguably all point to that increasing possibility. These are reasons for the so-called “predatory” brands to ponder and are cause for those victims of predators to quietly rejoice. Stay tuned for what’s coming and whatever is next. ##
“Our greatest pain can become our greatest purpose.”
– Katie Jordan.
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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.
Connect on LinkedIn: http://www.linkedin.com/in/latonykovach
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