Modular Homes vs Manufactured Homes: Everything You Need To Know To Get It Right! - Vacant Land USA
modular homes vs manufactured homes

Modular Homes vs Manufactured Homes: Everything You Need To Know To Get It Right!

Modular homes vs manufactured homes are often a huge source of confusion for many people. Some people use these words interchangeably, but in fact they are very different beasts.

Both modular homes and manufactured homes are extremely useful alternatives to the traditional site-build homes. In fact, we predict they will become more and more popular over the next few years.

If you are getting ready to buy your own home or are saving up at the moment, it is wise to stop and consider ALL the alternatives before you jump in and go the traditional route to buy the standard home.

Take a few minutes to open your mind to check out the pros and cons of “systems built technology” (modular homes) and manufactured homes that allows for potential massive cost and time savings.

Technology and innovation are everywhere including the home building industry. It is an exciting time to watch how quickly home building is advancing.

Our generation have the opportunity to think “how could I do this better, cheaper and more efficiently?”

We can make a choice to embrace a new way of doing things, rather than simply buy a standard house like our parents did.

Or build a house from scratch-slowly brick by brick.

And then spending the rest of our working life paying it off!

But is this the smartest way to go these days?

Or is there an alternative? If you do not own your own land yet, be sure to check out our current listings. Whether you decide on modular homes vs manufactured homes, you will need some land for them on which to rest.

Lets look at both options and then decide…

What is a manufactured home?

Manufactured homes are typically single-wide, or double-wide.

A single-wide home, or single section home, is a floor plan with one long section. It is approximately 1330 sq ft on average.

 A double wide home or two section homes, are floor plans with two sections joined together to create a larger home. Double-wide manufactured homes are approximately 1800 sq ft on average.

These are very popular with first home buyers, retirees and 2nd home buyers as they are one of the cheapest ways to own a home.

Advantages of manufactured homes

The primary advantage of a manufactured home (also called a mobile home or trailer home) is low cost.

Manufactured homes are built in factories on their own steel chassis and are completely constructed before being transported on their own wheels to your land.

The second advantage is speed.

It is possible to have a pre- built manufactured home delivered to your land within days.

Sometimes the wheels are removed, sometimes they are not.

They are easy to set up. They are rarely set on a permanent foundation. Typically, they have skirting/siding around the bottom of them to hide where the wheels are or where they were removed and to give it the appearance of a standard home.

Sometimes it is possible to move it to another site if you need to move. Though in practice this rarely happens.

Disadvantages of manufactured homes

Restrictive zoning issues are one of the biggest obstacles these days for manufactured homes. In some areas they are banned completely. In other areas, they are allowed only on the outskirts of town.

Some counties have placed an age restriction on manufactured homes, disallowing the placement of a home more than 5- or 10- years old.

These local laws have basically placed an expiration dates on these homes, and have artificially killed the resale value.

You will also need to check the lot size required for manufactured homes, density and set back requirements.

Another major disadvantage is lack of financing. It is extremely difficult to secure a loan on a manufactured home.

Manufactured homes are often titled as personal (or “chattel”) property, like TVs or cars, rather than as “real” property, like houses or apartments.

This has major implications for financing, taxation, consumer rights and protections.

The third major disadvantage is that manufactured homes typically depreciate in value. So while they are much cheaper to acquire in the beginning, if you were looking for a long-term investment that may appreciate over time like land or like a house, sadly, a manufactured home will lose value over time.

This decline in value over time is another reason why lenders do not like extending loans to manufactured homes.

Manufactured homes generally do not need to pass a building inspection to ensure they are structurally sound. They are manufactured according to requirements from the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD).

Some aspects of the work such as electrical or plumbing might be inspected, there is no requirement for structural inspection of the home itself.

How do I know if manufactured homes and modular homes are permitted on my land?

Many of the manufactured home and modular home sellers will be well versed in their local county zoning laws and permits required.

They will let you know to the best of their knowledge what is permitted and where. We also suggest that you read the County’s planning and zoning department website and even better, pick up the phone and call them. Ask them to tell you the different requirements on modular homes vs manufactured homes. Ask about any restrictions on size and age of the proposed home.

Taking the time to talk to a human being will pay great dividends. Often the planning and zoning people are very experienced and knowledgeable about what is required and the process you need to follow.

They have been asked most questions before and will be able to give you some great advice. Call them well ahead of time.

Tell them your plans and make sure you are certain your plans are allowed before you embark on any project.

What is a modular home?

A modular home is built in separate modules in a factory off site. Sometimes they are called pre-fabricated homes.  In the past, these sometimes had a bad name for being poorly built, being cookie cutter, and looking rather nasty.

But now times have changed, standards and technology has improved and modular homes are booming in popularity.

manufactured home versus modular home

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