Thursday, June 19, 2014

You Missed a Great Modular Home Builder Breakfast

Once again, the modular home builders and factory people had a great time at yesterday’s Builder Breakfast in Frederick, MD. We had a couple of seats open.

The reason for the great breakfast was the guest speaker, Mark Conte, Director of Pennsylvania’s Housing Standards Division. In what many considered to be one of the most frank and open discussions ever with a manufactured building regulator, he told everyone that he worked for three people, the home buyer, the builder and the factory.

Mark’s office is responsible for insuring that every modular home produced in PA and those coming into the state meet all code requirements.

He also works hard to keep PA’s 2,600  local code enforcement officers abreast of changes to the codes which happen every year and also welcomes calls from them and from modular home builders when something comes up that needs clarified.

The modular home builders asked about local code officers interpreting codes differently than his office requires and even changing or eliminating some entirely. His answer was not what anyone expected. He took his time and explained what it takes to become an inspector and the continuing training needed. He did acknowledge that a lot more work needs to be done by the state regulators to make sure that local jurisdictions don't work to opposite ends when inspecting modular housing. 

He asked every modular home builder and factory people to start attending the free code enforcement classes that the state offers local code inspectors and stand up and ask questions. There are few if any people attend these other than the code people but the classes are open to everyone. Plus you'll get continuing ed credits.

If our industry only had more meetings like this one, many of the problems facing the modular housing industry would disappear. 

Look for announcements about the July Builder Breakfast. 

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