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

August 5, 2012

How to Sell More Manufactured Homes into Landlease Communities NOW!

Filed under: Uncategorized — George Allen @ 4:00 am

Blog # 206 Copyright 2012 5 August 2012

Perspective. “Landlease communities, a.k.a. manufactured home communities, & before that, ‘mobile home parks’, are the real estate component of manufactured housing.” GFA

HUD – Code Manufacturers Showing Renewed Interest in Selling New ‘Community Series Homes’ into Land Lease Communities!


Where to Find the Mobe Dog Millionaire, our ‘Watchdog of Manufactured Housing’, & Water Meter Princess, All in One Story


More about Influential Person(s) Input & Breakfast Tomorrow in Elkhart, IN. ‘Have YOU sent in your recommendation(s); & will I see YOU at 8AM Monday, at the Golden Egg Restaurant?’ GFA

Have you blog floggers (readers) already noticed two significant changes to the punctuation and word usage in this blog posting? As we edited the soon – to – be – released Book of Formulae, Rules of Thumb & Helpful Measures ‘mostly for Land Lease Communities & HUD – Code Manufactured Housing….’, Bruce Savage convinced me to hyphenate ‘HUD – Code’ and opt for ‘land lease community’, rather than past practice.



HUD – Code Manufacturers Showing Renewed Interest in Selling New ‘Community Series Homes’ into Land Lease Communities!

“Several years back, I was visiting an elderly woman in my Quaker meeting. She was reminiscing about her childhood. I asked her what she missed the most. She closed her eyes for a moment, thinking back, then said, “Porch talk. I miss the porch talk.” “

“Social scientists and preachers offer a number of reasons for the decline of civil society; broken homes, poverty, disease, television, and increasing secularism, to name a few. I believe all that is wrong with our world can be attributed to the shortage of front porches and the talks we had on them. Somewhere around 1950, builders left off the front porch to save money, and we’ve had nothing but problems ever since.” From Philip Gulley’s easy to reed book, Porch Talk, Harper One, 2007., p.1.

Well, guess what? The HUD – Code manufactured housing industry already has an AFFORDABLE CURE for these SOCIETAL ILLS: the ‘front porch – loaded, single section Community Series Home! That CSH design, along with the inherently ‘affordable’ nature of our factory – built housing product, should or could, along with accessible chattel financing, spark a new and much – needed renascence for our industry and realty asset class!

Maybe yes, maybe no. But tell you what; during the past week, between 30 July and 3 August, I fielded no fewer than three telephone calls from Business Development Managers representing three different HUD – Code home manufacturers: Clayton, Champion, and Cavco.

What did these BDMs want to discuss? ONE THING. How to effectively market new HUD – Code manufactured homes, as well as Community Series Homes, to land lease community owners and property portfolio operators nationwide! I’ll be meeting personally with each of these BDMs during the weeks ahead, and here’s the gist of what we’ll be discussing:

• Be prepared with elevation drawings and floor plans of homes that’ll fit on rental homesites in older and newer land lease communities. This means small singlesection homes, even RV ‘park models’ (where allowed) for properties with a plethora of functionally obsolete sites (i.e. built ‘years ago’ & too small for today’s generally larger homes). Also larger singlesection, and smaller multisection homes, for land lease communities built during and since our industry’s too short – lived renascence in and around 1998 – 2000.

• Have a selection of Community Series Homes designs and floor plans available, especially for land lease community owners/operators who’re buying new manufactured homes for use as rental units or occupied using lease option agreements. If you need a list of specific durability – enhancing features characteristic of, and preferred in, CSH model homes, phone the MHIndustry HOTLINE: (877) MFD-HSNG or 633-4764 to request a FREE copy of the CSH/BDM list.

• Be where land lease community owners/operators congregate to network this Fall! For starters, patronize the gala SECO event in Atlanta, GA., on the 29th of August. This Southeastern (Land Lease) Community Owners Symposium is being ‘planned by land lease community owners for land lease community owners’. Miss this, and miss a prime new home sales opportunity in that region of the U.S. Visit

• Excuse the self – serving nature of ‘this recommendation’; but if a HUD – Code home manufacturer with a national presence, you can’t afford not to be at the 21st International Networking Roundtable in San Diego, 12 – 14 September 2012. There’ll be upwards of 200 land lease community owners and operators present, along with their preferred lenders. It’s the only time each year, when land lease community aficionados come together for education, networking, deal – making, and interaction with CSH manufacturers. So, visit to register or phone the above – referenced MHIndustry HOTLINE

• When exhibiting new manufactured homes in Kentucky and Oklahoma this Winter, display as many new home designs/floor plans land lease community owners/operators ‘want to see and buy’ (e.g. CSH models), as you – the manufacturers, ‘hope to sell’ to land/home package contractors and MHRetailers specializing in developing scattered sites conveyed fee simple. Everyone knows this would be a major break in tradition, for sure, but will also clearly signal manufactured housing finally recognizes an increasing part of its’ future prosperity is tied to a return to truly affordable housing and placement of new homes in land lease lifestyle communities!

• Be ready and able to teach and assist land lease community owners/operators, not yet actively marketing new manufactured homes on – site, How To Do So! And we’re NOT talking about the old independent ‘street’ MHRetailer & ‘company store’ approach either! Rather, you (and we) need marketing professionals and sales trainers who understand and teach the promotion of ‘community lifestyle’ as much as they do ‘product’. IF and when you can do so, you’ll be the most popular HUD – Code manufacturer in town! For that matter, let me know and I’ll tell the 1,000+/- blog floggers of this weekly posting how to contact YOU for help.

• Convince yourself, and the land lease community owners/operators you teach, to sell ‘lifestyle’ and housing ‘product’, there’s No Long Term Advantage For Either Of You to Sell More Home Than Buyers Can Truly Afford! With that said, be prepared to explain ‘How to calculate affordable housing Price Points based on one’s local housing market’s (Defined by postal zip code) Area Median Income or AMI, or customer’s or household’s Annual Gross Income or AGI. Methodology? Simple. Use the popular, strangely – named, ‘Ah Ha! & Uh Oh! Worksheet’ – with examples, available FREE, via aforementioned MHIndustry HOTLINE. Understand; our industry’s penchant for ‘NOT including household utility expenses’ in the widely – applied 30% (of AGI) Housing Expense Factor or HEF (i.e. PITI = principal, interest, taxes, insurance), is a primary reason there’re more ‘risky’ housing finance deals these days! For that matter, a mortgagor’s (i.e. borrower’s) HEF will approach 50%, when PITI and household expenses are totaled together, after the housing mortgage has been underwritten and effected.

• Advertise where land lease community owners and property portfolio operators read! Today, that’s pretty much restricted to the Allen Letter professional journal, a subscriber – supported trade publication. This is the only publication focused on serving the information needs of land lease community owners/operators nationwide, without regard to national association membership of any kind. Also know it’s possible to engage in a Direct Mail campaign to 500+/- property portfolio owners/operators who own/manage an average of 27 land lease communities apiece, with average sized property containing 219 rental homesites. For Direct Mail campaign details, phone the MHIndustry HOTINE. Mailing list is 95+% up to date, and addressees are the portfolio decision – makers. Why aren’t any other print publications mentioned here? Well, they’re either no longer in print or….

• Finally, and at this point in time, the most important thing to have available, is a source of chattel (personal property) financing for the homes you sell! And if this is not available via your firm, be prepared to walk your new home sales customers through the lease option process, if legal in their state; and if necessary, put them in touch with someone with successful experience leasing manufactured homes on – site as apartments. For lease option information, visit For rental unit background, ask for a FREE reprint on ‘renting’ when phoning the aforementioned MHIndustry HOTLINE.

• Want to corner the ‘on – site new home sales in land lease community market’? Research, write, publish, and distribute, for a price or for free, the manufactured housing industry’s first HOW TO guidebook on this very subject! Seriously. No one has done so to date. Be the first to do so, and do it well (I’ll be pleased to assist, via editing, printing, & binding, if asked.), and there’s a market of between 7,500 and 50,000 land lease community owners/operators ‘out there’ who’d likely buy a copy from YOU! How do I know? Landlease Community Management, since 1988, has gone through eight editions and sold tens of thousands of copies to date. J. Wiley & Sons’ Development, Marketing & Management of Manufactured Home Communities, though published way back in 1994, continues to sell well when ‘raw land development’ is in vogue. And their How to Find, Buy, Manage & Sell a Manufactured Home Community, published in 1998, continues to be ‘the Bible’ on that rarified topic. The Manufactured Housing (Chattel) $$$ Primer, distributed two years ago at the MHCongress ‘sold out’ within six months. And Wells Fargo Bank’s Manufactured Home Community Finance Handbook is one of the most popular handouts at every MHCongress! So why not be, as we used to say in the military, recognized as the ‘duty expert’ on setting up and managing on – site home salescenters within land lease communities? Someone’s going to do it someday; why not now; why not YOU?


Where to Find the Mobe Dog Millionaire, our ‘Watchdog of Manufactured Housing’, & Water Meter Princess, All in One Story

I’m often been called on, by family, friends, and business associates, to pen memorials and eulogies for loved ones and acquaintances. This past weekend, I was working on The Commodore’s Homecoming, a tribute to Ron Richardson, who died on 5 July 2012. a couple thoughts occurred to me. Many land lease community owners/operators throughout the U.S. knew and liked Ron as a friend and business associate. He is also the first of the original 18 Pioneers, who met on 31 August 1963, in Indianapolis, IN., to found the national advocacy body that’d, 2 ½ years later emerge as MHI’s National Communities Council, now division.

So, decided to craft a fictional short story describing who might have participated in a wake or memorial gathering, in Ron’s honor, if we’d had the opportunity to do so. Well, I made a collection of nearly a dozen nicknames of well known and, at times colorful, individuals I’ve known in the MHBusiness during the past three decades, and wrote them into a fictional shot story that begins,

“The Commodore’s business buddies decided he deserved a manufactured housing – flavored sendoff. So, the Colonel stepped up to the trailer hitch and….”

The story is featured in the August issue of the Allen Letter professional journal. If you’re not a subscriber, but would like to become one, to read this tale, and regularly read ‘all that’s worth reading about our MHIndustry & LLCommunity asset class’, phone me at (317) 346-7156.



More about Influential Person(s) Input, & Breakfast Tomorrow in
Elkhart. IN. ‘Have YOU sent in your recommendation(s) & will I
see YOU at 8AM Monday, at the Golden Egg Restaurant?’ GFA

Really not much to add. The List of 25 Most Influential Persons in the Manufactured Housing Industry & Land Lease Community Real Estate Asset Class continues to grow. So, if YOU would still like to input, do so this week, via the MHIndustry HOTLINE: (877) MFD-HSNG or 633-4764 or email:
Remember, ‘the list’ will likely be published in January 2013, as part of the 24th ALLEN REPORT (a.k.a. ‘Who’s Who Among Land Lease Community Portfolio Owners/operators Throughout North America!’). Regarding that Signature Series Resource Document (‘SSRD’), know that it’ll also likely be distributed as a lagniappe in that month’s Allen Letter professional journal. To subscribe ($134.95/year = 12 monthly issues), call the MHIndustry HOTLINE. Also know the questionnaires used to research the annual ALLEN REPORT will be in the mail sometime during late August and early September, before we all get together at the 21st Networking Roundtable in San Diego, CA., @ 12 – 14 September.

Finally; do hope to see some blog floggers at breakfast tomorrow morning, at 8AM, at the Golden Egg Restaurant on the NE edge of Elkhart, IN. Those who participate will receive an industry & asset class – related gift from me. See you there!


George Allen, CPM®Emeritus, MHM®Master
Box # 47024, Indpls, IN. 46247 (317) 346-7156

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