Manufactured Homes – 2017 Guide


More than 6.8 million manufactured homes were primary residences in 2013, the year for which the latest accurate data is available. Judging from the more recent individual sales numbers posted by the manufacturers, this number has grown considerably.

A manufactured home is defined as a home built after 1976, and it consists of two or more sections that form a single story dwelling as stipulated in the Federal Manufactured Home Construction and Safety Standards Act which became effective in 1976. This Act is administered by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). HUD strictly regulates the design, construction, strength, durability, fire resistance and energy efficiency of manufactured homes.

Under this Act, the entire design and build process is inspected by a third-party inspection agency which must certify that the home meets the HUD code before it can be shipped. This assures the buyer that they are receiving a safe and quality constructed home.

Site-built homes usually do not have the same level of inspection and quality assurance, and the level of assurance varies widely between each jurisdiction’s codes and inspection procedures. The HUD Code is the most stringent of all building codes. Some states also employ inspectors who are in the manufacturing plants every day. The HUD homes built after 1976 will have a quality assurance insignia attached to the home.

Manufactured homes are far less costly to build than site-built homes. The average price of a new manufactured home in 2013 was $64,000 prior to installing the home on the land. The average price of a new single family site-built home was $269,000. These numbers were reported in January 2015, and site-built homes have risen in price considerably more than manufactured homes have.

There are many reasons why manufactured homes are so inexpensive while their quality is so high. Manufactured homes are designed for construction efficiency and the best use of space with energy savings included in the design. The latest construction technology is used in manufacturing the homes. Unlike many site-built homes, most manufactured homes include major appliances, carpets, window coverings and all fixtures.

Manufactured homes are constructed by using a process similar to the assembly line. All structural components of the home are pre-cut and ready for the build process without any delays. Assemblers are highly trained in the construction process which adds to the building efficiency.

Manufactured homes in 2017 are available with multiple designs. These designs make the manufactured homes look just like site-built homes. There are multiple choices of exterior designs and materials. The vast number of floor plans ensures that a floor plan is available for every need. The floor plan designs include multiple choices of living arrangements. For example, the open concept is very popular because it allows the person working in the kitchen to visit with family and guests who are in the living room. Some models have a den and other models have a separate dining room, and some models have both. Models with three bedrooms are available. The floor plan configurations are nearly endless.

The manufactured homes being built today have a wide variety of interior design selections. Many wall coverings and paint choices are available. The buyer has multiple choices of interior products and designs. Many options exist for kitchen cabinets and countertops. Floor coverings are available in a number of materials and designs.

Upgraded features like faucets and bathroom tubs and showers are being offered to buyers who want a more exquisite feel to their home. Kitchen faucets are also available in many styles and materials.

Manufactured homes can be installed on private land or in a manufactured home park (community) where residents can enjoy many amenities and a great social life. Social and recreational activities create a lifestyle that is rewarding to many people. Meeting and socializing with like-minded people is a wonderful way to enjoy life. Some parks are designed for age 55+ only, and other parks are family oriented.

Parks handle all of the installation and utility hookups for the owner. Installation on private land requires a lot of coordination on the part of the owner, and one key item to keep in mind is making sure all of the local zoning requirements are met and permits are obtained. Making sure that utilities are available is also important. Installing a home on private land means that there must be access for delivery of the home. The lot must be properly graded to prevent water from eroding the soil under the home and around the foundation. It would be a good idea to hire an experienced contractor/installer to handle the installation.

Modern manufactured homes are known and popular because of its high quality, safety, and affordability.

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