Purchasing a manufactured home is obviously a huge investment. Standard steps include checking your credit and then choosing your home and its unique details. But there is much more that goes into purchasing a manufactured home than these standard steps. It is important to know the regulations of the region where you will be placing your home. It needs to meet local, county, regional, state, and HUD building codes. It is also important to make sure that your investment will appreciate in value over time. A good rule of thumb is that mobile homes placed on rental properties tend to lose value, while mobile homes placed on a permanent foundations are less likely to depreciate in value.
More than anything, it is important to weigh out the value of manufactured homes versus other housing options like apartments, condos, and permanent homes. To be further informed on manufactured homes, we turned to our panel of housing experts.
Below are the comments we found most informational and beneficial. Check back later in the week to see what other tips we have for purchasing a manufactured home!
What are the primary advantages of manufactured home ownership?
It is apparent that they are cost effective, but are there hidden fees?
Higher interest rates than typical mortgage loans, etc?
Can manufactured homes withstand a storm well?
How can you ensure it has a solid foundation?
Are there better places to place your home in the long run? Rental communities? Purchase your own plot of land?
"When searching for a mortgage for a manufactured home, the degree to which the home becomes “immobile” and whether or not you own the land on which it is placed are two key factors that the lender will consider. In addition, the majority of manufactured home mortgages are insured by the Federal Housing Administration (FHA), a part of HUD. In the past to qualify for an FHA-insured mortgage, the applicant’s home must adhere to regulations regarding size, classification, foundation, utility connectivity, transportation method, mortgage type and the unit cannot have been previously installed or occupied." read more
"Pre-fab housing has been thought of as something less than a real home for a long time. In the last few years, I’ve seen some incredible very modern LEED built pre-fab homes in many national magazines and my own Sunday newspaper. I think these would be great for small families or even when my husband and I retire and downsize. Many of the things you would think about when buying a home would apply to the location of these structures. Is the lot in a flood plain, near a river or in a high fire danger hillside? I would build a very sound foundation based on the pre-fab engineering and I’d probably hire a structural engineer for a site visit and any additional work necessary to meet my local codes." read more
"A few years ago a client came to us with a very aggressive budget. They loved our custom homes but gave us a challenge to combine our architectural design talent with the efficiency of modular housing. We designed a home and coordinated with the modular factory. The factory sent us “shop drawings” which we reviewed and returned to them marked up with any changes or corrections. Then a short while later the home was delivered on six flat bed trucks. We had the foundation in place and our local contractor assisted as the company set the “boxes” in place using a crane." read more
"Why are problems so prevalent with modulars? The FHA is the authority with jurisdiction, not the plumbing or building code. Some areas have trained inspectors for these units and some do not. Odd appliances and parts are a problem. I would require that only universal appliances and tubs and showers be used. Steel studs would be my choice and I would be in regular communication with the manufacturer on every detail. If a park having many units from same manufacture was an option, that might offer group support in the event of issues." read more