DENVER – ROC USA® President Paul Bradley spoke at the invitation of the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City and the Wells Fargo Housing Foundation this month on the evolution of the manufactured home community industry.
Bradley outlined the industry’s past and present for 60 government, nonprofit and industry representatives as well as two homeowners from threatened manufactured home communities.
He also shared the ways ROC USA has helped secure the homes of more than 10,000 households in 173 resident-owned communities (ROCs) in 14 states.
“That part of ROC USA’s work – helping communities secure resident ownership – is vital, but what really sets us apart is the way our network affiliates continue to work with ROCs after ink dries on the closing papers,” Bradley said. “The technical assistance providers spend at least a decade helping community leaders enhance their neighborhoods directly and we’ll be delivering services like leadership development, marketing and discounts on purchases for the long-term.”
The daylong event was called Manufactured Housing Solutions: How Manufactured Housing Can Help Preserve and Develop Affordable Housing in Colorado. It focused on the state’s 1,000 manufactured home communities and 40,000 homes and what Colorado officials and interested parties could do to help sustain and improve them.
Bradley moderated a panel that included Suzanne Arnarde from Rural LISC and Roger Lewis, an executive coach from Boulder, Col., titled “Community Development and Manufactured Housing Preservation, Scan of Issues, Market Conditions, and Strategies.”
He also gave a quick review of the 80-year history of the travel trailer/manufactured housing industry and the evolution of the housing stock and markets that up the industry today. Bradley’s comments hinged heavily on the July 1960 Popular Mechanics article that he’s previously written and blogged about. (A copy is available to those who request one.) He also spoke on market conditions in the Manufactured Home Community (aka Mobile Home Park) industry.
In the panel on “Best Practices”, Bradley was asked to speak about the current support system for homeowners who wish to form co-ops to purchase their communities. His remarks showcased the ROC Association and its 173 resident-owned communities (ROCs) in 14 states which ROC USA and Network TA affiliates support.
Other speakers included, public officials from the State of Colorado, nonprofit and government lenders, and homeowners.
Bradley said these types of partner building programs are critical to building the infrastructure to support residents who wish to purchase their communities.
“ROC USA is the first and only network of local trainers and a dedicated financing resource for client communities in the U.S.,” he said. “There’s growing interest in resident ownership as an increasing number of people discover the critical role that communities and manufactured homes play in the affordable housing mix in many markets. ROCs are always one of the exciting solutions as the self-help nature of resident ownership really resonates with audiences.”