George Allen / EducateMHC Blog Mobile Home & Land Lease Community Advocate & Expert

December 6, 2017

Definition of Affordable Housing & We are ‘housers’!

Filed under: Uncategorized — George Allen @ 2:23 pm

Blog # 472; Copyright @ 3 December 2017; at

Perspective. ‘Land lease communities, previously manufactured home communities, & ‘mobile home parks’, comprise the real estate component of manufactured housing.’

This blog posting is the sole national advocate, voice, official ombudsman, historian, research report, & online communication media for all North American LLCommunities.

To input this blog &/or affiliate with Community Owners (7 Part) Business Alliance, a.k.a. COBA7, use Official MHIndustry HOTLINE: (877) MFD-HSNG or 633-4764

COBA7 Motto: ‘U Support US & WE Serve U!’ Goal of its’ print & online media =
to not only inform & opine, but to transform & improve MHBusiness performance!

INTRODUCTION: Here learn the official definition of ‘affordable housing’; what it means to be a ‘houser’; how two print trade publications, covering manufactured housing and land lease communities, will debut during next six months; and, how to become involved in ‘Solving Our Nation’s (Lack of) Affordable Housing Crisis, with Factory-built Housing & Land Lease Communities!’ at Louisville MHShow on 17 January 2018.


Definition of Affordable Housing*
George Allen, CPM Emeritus, MHM Master

“Housing is Affordable when an individual or household’s Annual Gross Income (‘AGI’), or local housing market’s Area Median Income (‘AMI’) – identified by postal zip code & available online at, can lease a conventional apartment and or buy a home in this local housing market, using no more than 30 percent of said AGI, or AMI, for said shelter and its’ related household (utility) expenses. For example. $50,000 AGI/AMI X .3 HEF (i.e. 30 % Housing Expense Factor) = $15,000 (divided by 12 months = $1,250/month) available for rent or mortgage PITI (principal, interest, taxes, insurance) & household expenses.” GFA


Low Income Housing (LIH), is a subset of affordable housing, and occurs when AGI/AMI is only 80 percent of aforementioned 30 percent HEF. For example. $50,000 AGI/AMI X .3 HEF = $15,000 for rent or mortgage PITI, X .8 LIH factor = only $12,000/year, or $1,000/month available for rent or mortgage PITI & household expenses.


Very Low Income Housing (‘VLIH’), is yet another subset of affordable housing, and occurs when AGI/AMI is only 50 percent of aforementioned 30 percent HEF. For example. $50,000 AGI/AMI X .3 HEF = $15,000 for rent or mortgage PITI, X .5 LIH factor = only $7,500/year, or $625/month, available for rent or mortgage PITI & household expenses.

* Copyright 2017 by COBA7, a division of GFA Management, Inc., dba PMN Publishing
Box # 47024, Indianapolis, IN. 46247
Official MHIndustry HOTLINE: (877) MFD-HSNG or 633-4764

Addendum to Definition of Affordable Housing, relative to manufactured housing’s use of chattel capital for new HUD-Code homes sited in land lease communities.

Here are two significant considerations pursuant to the three part definition cited above:

• First, know there must be an adjustment for rental homesite payments in the examples cited above, to fully account for the allocation of said 30 percent HEF. Deducting, for example, $333/month in each instance, the amount remaining for renting a manufactured home and rental homesite together, or rental homesite alone when one owns their home, is as follows:

Affordable: $15,000 (-) $3,996 (i.e. $333/month rent X 12 months) = $11,004 divided by 12 months = $917/month available

LIH: $12,000 (-) $3,996 = $8,004 divided by 12 months = $667/month

VLIH: $7,500 (-) $3,996 = $3,504 divided by 12 months = $292/month

• Second. Know routine manufactured housing finance generally does not include ‘household expenses’ within the 30 percent HEF cited above. By not doing so, homeowner/site lessees pay their 30 percent HEF for rent or mortgage PITI, while their household expenses (i.e. utilities, but not including CATV & phone) effectively increase the target 30 percent HEF to 40 percent and higher. End result? An otherwise ‘affordable’ housing investment turned ‘risky’!

Did that get your attention? Then join the ‘Solving Our Nation’s Affordable Housing Crisis’ movement, by attending the Louisville MHShow on 17 January 2018. Look me up there – I’ll be easy to find – and request a FREE copy of the mini White Paper, ‘Solving Our Nation’s (Lack of) Affordable Housing Crisis, with Factory-built Housing & Land Lease Communities!’ Likely, opportunities for public discussion of the document, and planning how to effect said solution(s) to solve our nation’s affordable housing crisis.


You & I are ‘Housers’!

That’s right. When one attends a Solutions for Affordable Housing program, planned and hosted by the National Housing Conference, one learns anyone who provides housing to American citizenry is a ‘houser’. Seriously. Now you know!

In any event, 220 of us convened at the Ronald Reagan Building & International Trade Center. to participate in as many as eight concurrent conference sessions, plus luncheon and closing plenary sessions. Among the attendees were three COBA7 affiliates, two MHI members, one MHARR executive, & one freelance manufactured housing industry consultant.

Prior to and during this event, three dozen copies of the aforementioned mini-White Paper: ‘Solving Our Nation’s (Lack of) Affordable Housing Crisis, with Factory-built Housing & Land Lease Communities!’ were distributed to presenters, including:

• Dana Wade, General Deputy Assistant Secretary at HUD. Good to know her!

• Jim Gray, Federal Housing Finance Agency (Think Duty to Serve pilot programs)

• David Leopold, VP, Target Affordable Production & Investments at Freddie Mac

• Michael Hernandez, VP, Affordable Housing Initiatives at Fannie Mae

• Neal Rackleff, Assistant Secretary, Community Planning & Development, HUD

In addition to these federal housing-related executives, there were representatives present from major banks and various NGOs (non-government organizations) such as Enterprise Community Partners, Mission First Housing, LeadingAge, Housing Partnership Equity Trust, Prosperity Now (formerly CFED), Mortgage Bankers Association, Urban Institute, National CORE, and many many more.

So, what topics were covered? Duty to Serve rule implementation, New Solutions for Nonprofit Rental Housing, Economic Revival in Challenged Communities; Minority Ownership, Meeting Housing Needs of Older Adults, and Rental Assistance Demonstration – plus the plenary sessions.

Learned a second new word at this NHC event: COLONIA. Know what it is? In the U.S., along the USA-Mexico border, colonias are ‘low-income, unincorporated housing areas inhabited mostly by Mexicans’.

The most exciting aspect of this one day event? How ‘manufactured housing’ was mentioned, as a practical solution to the U.S. ‘affordable housing’ crisis, in all three sessions I attended! The downside? With but a handful of manufactured housing aficionados present, there really wasn’t much we could do to carry the day for our industry and realty asset class! Maybe next time around…


What to Expect During 2018 – Revisited!

As you’ll, recall, blog posting # 471, tee’d you up as to what to expect to occur during year 2018. Remember?

• A ‘new class’ of HUD-Code manufactured home, not likely to be referred to as such, but designed to appeal to underserved housing buyer markets, e.g. millennials. Unique features? 5/12 roof pitch with asphalt shingles, mounted on permanent foundations, have a built-in porch, and likely a garage or carport at one end of the home. Some wags have already taken to refer to this ‘new class’ of home as being Millennial Housing. What do you think it should be called? Tell the folk at MHI: (202) 783-4087. MHI’s Dick Jennison will be ‘holding forth’ on this timely subject @ 8AM on 1/17 at the Louisville MHShow. Be there!

• The affordable housing crowd, including ‘low cost’ & ‘very low cost’ housing folk are discovering HUD-Code manufactured housing and the land lease community lifestyle! This is already a-happening, as evidenced at the recent National Housing Conference program: ‘Solutions for Affordable Housing’ in Washington, D.C. (Frankly, I can’t figure why there were no salaried or elected MHI leaders present – yet the institute is a ‘member’ of the NHCC) Go figure.

• Another change ‘in the wind’, involves an active initiative to organize and launch a new independent third party national advocacy entity to serve the lobbying and related needs of post-production segments of the manufactured housing industry. This is not COBA7! – but something altogether new. I’ll put you in touch with the ‘organizers’ if you email me via

• Land lease communities continue to be the ‘new and growing primary market’ for the distribution of HUD-Code manufactured homes. However, this trend, while obvious among most of the 500+/- portfolio owners/operators of land lease communities, has not taken hold among the estimated 42,500 smaller LLCommunities (i.e. mostly Mom & Pop properties). So, a second year initiative is being planned by the IMHA/RVIC (Indiana) during the Spring of 2018: a second Two Days of Plant Tours & Home Sales Seminars’, at the RV/MH Hall of Fame in Elkhart, IN. Want to attend? Phone (317) 247-6258.

So now we learn there’s a fourth initiative to materialize during year 2018! The launch of not one, but two new print trade publications (i.e. magazines) to serve the information needs of the manufactured housing industry and land lease communities nationwide. As you know, Kurt Kelly’s online ezine, Manufactured Housing Review launched earlier this year. Well, be present at the aforementioned Louisville MHShow to pick up copies of the new pub, rumored to maybe be MHInsider (Sound familiar? It should. That’s how COBA7 affiliates are referred to in each of the Allen CONFIDENTIAL! business newsletters – but there’s no connection with the alliance). And a second new print trade publication will likely debut during the Spring of 2018. No further details available at this time. Well, appears the manufactured housing industry will be back in the communication business!



Be aware, this is the absolutely last week (12/4-8/2017) for submission of LLCommunity portfolio statistics to COBA7, for inclusion in the 29th annual ALLEN REPORT, due out as a lagniappe in the January 2018 issue of the Allen Letter professional journal!

And, we’re putting together a one day Manufactured Housing Manager (‘MHM’) professional property management training and certification class on 16 January 2018 (the day before the Louisville MHShow begins) at a hotel near the KY fairgrounds. If interested, phone (317) 346-7156 to secure an invitation. Class limited to 25 @ $295.00 apiece. Remember, more than 1,000 MHMs now own/operate LLCommunities nationwide and throughout Canada. No other PM certification program comes anywhere close to covering this important material.


George Allen, CPM & MHM
COBA7, a division of GFA Management, Inc., dba PMN Publishing
Indianapolis, IN. 46247
(317) 346-7156

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