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Manufactured Homes
Old 06-24-2007, 08:11 AM   #1
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Manufactured Homes

What is your opinion of manufactured homes? Palm Harbor and the like. Anyone ever owned one?


Pocono 56J4 Modular Home Plan | Manufactured Floor Plans


This one looks about right. I might only want 2 bedrooms and a larger living area
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Old 06-24-2007, 09:20 AM   #2
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They are not the same construction as a home constructed under the supervision of your local building department. The depreciate even under the best real estate conditions. If you don't care about that then they provide comfortable housing cheap.

Frankly I wouldn't buy one even if put on a standard foundation.

There are a couple of good prefab home construction firms out there but because they aren't built with the HUD certificate local building inspectors have a cow, particularly the electrical inspectors.
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Old 06-24-2007, 10:05 AM   #3
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Alright, whats the deal with 'manufactured' homes.

Basically most loans for them are more like car loans than mortgages. They depreciate and have a finite life. Manufactured home sales people make used car sales people seem saintly...apparently the price and time frames you get quoted only bear slight resemblances to what you actually end up paying and getting. Permanent foundations are a must.
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Old 06-24-2007, 02:43 PM   #4
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After we bought our retirement acreage, we purchased a manufactured home (I call it a trailer...ours is a single wide and came on wheels which we got to keep) to live in when we vacationed there. We paid less than what most people spend on their cars and ended up with approx 1200 sq ft 2 BR 2 Bath cozy home. It's not the greatest but serves its purpose and came with all appliances (stove, frig, microwave, washer and dryer). Yep ,it depreciates. Yep, you get a title to it. Yep, you can hear someone sneeze on the other end of the place. It does keep the rain off our heads and most of the bugs outside. Definately not an investement that will make money but an investment in ourselves. Beats sleeping in a tent.
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Old 06-24-2007, 02:45 PM   #5
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I am considering one for retirement but I don't like them. I want to live on acreage and can have one hauled in much quicker than having a home built with less fuss. The problems are things like not being as well built, having at least a couple of stairs to get to the porch so not naturally handicapped accessible. I worry about the roofing and heating cost and I don't like the looks of them. My home value will all be in the land and when I die my heirs can remove the mobile and replace it with a house if they like or sell the land as is with the home being a place to live while you build. I may buy an existing mobile and live in it while I build then use it as a guest house or rental maybe for caregivers. I would like to have a young couple who could do a bit of labor for me in exchange for rent. I intend to be in the boonies alone in old age so it would be good to have someone to help with chores.
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Old 06-24-2007, 02:58 PM   #6
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I'm for stick built homes and have a hard time with manufactured homes - they seem lightweight and cheesy, not built for the long haul. But. While we brought in old schoolhouse lamps and 1910 doors and mouldings to use in our house when we redid it in '96-'99, the then-new countertops and sinks and such would probably want to be replaced if we were selling. Watch a "sell this house" type show and they pretty much mandate swapping in new fixtures to enhance resale. Cabinets go out of style - the CVG oak looks dated now. Spaces deemed desirable become passe' - see a lot of sewing rooms in new home designs? Will computer rooms become out of date? All our cat-5 wiring seems pretty pointless now. Maybe building for a 50 year or better lifetime is bad thinking. Older car designers built inefficiently - some parts would last "forever" while others failed quickly - newer cars seem to be designed to last really well through the warranty period and then suffer massive system collapse. Perhaps homes should be built to acknowledge the public's changing sense of style and taste and only last 25 years - if so then a manufactured home might be the best expression of that efficient style of building.
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Old 06-24-2007, 03:12 PM   #7
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I listed Manufactured Home... That was incorrect what I am talking about is called a a Modular Home.

According to the Builder, they are built to the same local codes as a normal home, but are essentially a Pre-fab Homes. It is apparently manufactured similarly to traditional construction in a factory, but assembled on site.

It sounds like a play on words... but apparently a manufactured home is a house trailer.

What is a Modular Home | Palm Harbor Homes

Here is a picture from another one of their divisions. It shows one being assembled. http://www.discoverycustomhomes.com/...nstruction.asp
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Old 06-24-2007, 03:27 PM   #8
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They attract tornadoes!
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Old 06-24-2007, 06:42 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chinaco View Post
I listed Manufactured Home... That was incorrect what I am talking about is called a a Modular Home.
Theoretically, manufacturing sub-assemblies under controlled conditions can provide a much higher quality product.

Imagine a guy coming to your house with a few thousand components and a soldering iron to assemble your new TV in-situ. Good luck even getting it to fire up, let alone last for 10 years.

In practice - it all depends.

From your link -
Quote:
Modular homes appreciate over time just like other homes in your neighborhood
.

If possible, check that out with some real data in your area. If everything else looks good, then why not?

-ERD50
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Old 06-24-2007, 07:06 PM   #10
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[quote=chinaco;528971]I listed Manufactured Home... That was incorrect what I am talking about is called a a Modular Home.

I was gonna say, the first pic you posted sure looked like a mobile home, so I was wondering why they would make a modular stick built model that looked so much like a mobile...

I have a friend who had a 2-story modular put up and it looks great... It is a real house, very well made and will appreciate just as well as a site-built house.

So now the question is, which model of the modulars interests you?
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Old 06-24-2007, 07:21 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by igsoy View Post
I was gonna say, the first pic you posted sure looked like a mobile home, so I was wondering why they would make a modular stick built model that looked so much like a mobile...

I have a friend who had a 2-story modular put up and it looks great... It is a real house, very well made and will appreciate just as well as a site-built house.

So now the question is, which model of the modulars interests you?
The company has several lines a lower cost, and upper cost line. The first picture was from a lower cost line. Although, it is not a mobile home.

I have not identified a model. We will be downsizing in a few years. I am contemplating a 1500 Sq ft ranch with an open floor plan. It occurred to me that we might consider a Modular home. Since is is built in a factory setting with Quality Control, It might be constructed better than on site construction.

It might be a reasonable option. I was wondering if anyone had any experience with them.
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Old 06-24-2007, 10:31 PM   #12
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I listed Manufactured Home... That was incorrect what I am talking about is called a a Modular Home.
We hopefully will be building a new house within the next 5 years or so, and may consider a modular home if we can find a design that doesn't look too box-like. Modulars are built to the same codes as site-built houses, supposedly they are built even stronger so they can withstand the trip by flatbed truck from the factory to your site. It makes alot of sense to me to build in a controlled environment (factory) in assembly line style with regular inspections. This home was an entry in the 2007 Tampa Bay (FL) Parade of Homes this year.....we went and looked at it and it was very nice inside and out, and appeared just as solid as a site-built home:

Tampa Bay Spring Parade of Homes 2007

DIY NETWORK (DIY Network : Home Improvement, Craft Ideas, Gardening, Autos & Woodworking Projects and Videos) recently (March-May 2007) ran five episodes concerning a modular home build, episode numbers are:

DBVH-1414
DBVH-1418
DBVH-1419
DBVH-1422
DBVH-1423

Hope that helps.
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Old 06-24-2007, 11:40 PM   #13
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You may have already seen this page on our site, but for those who have not, its a Resource Page for Active Adult Retirement Living: A A Com Lists There is a Home Buying Info site listed that you might also find informative.

Personally, we live in an adult community: (See Worry Free Housing) and don't know what all the fuss is about.

I don't want to live in the same home for 50 years.. Each to their own. We just happen to like having more mobility, less financial commitment and less maintenance.

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Old 06-24-2007, 11:52 PM   #14
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Nope, never owned a manufactured home, but I did sell policies for them when I worked at an insurance agency many years ago. You may want to talk to your insurance agent for his/her opinion.
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Old 06-25-2007, 11:21 AM   #15
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No experience with modular homes but interested in what others have to say and have posted already.

Once in a while, I browse through Dwell magazine, and they actually have modern prefab homes for sale: The Dwell Homes by Empyrean. They look interesting to me although very linear. I don't know if these are the same as the modular homes you are asking about.

Maybe Sheryl and other architects, builders, and civil engineers on the forum can share their experience and opinion.
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Old 06-25-2007, 04:59 PM   #16
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Modular homes constructed in conformance with stick-built codes are much better than 'manufactured homes' constructed per HUD. You need to have a heart-to-heart discussion with your local building officials. Don't buy a modular home without a building permit in hand that approves it's placement!!

Some jurisdictions refuse to accept the manufacturer's certification of code compliance because their beady eyes didn't inspect them during fabrication. This issue even shows up with steel manufactured commercial buildings... even 'tho the manufacturer is the largest in the US the local guy didn't inspect the welds when hot.

Few of you need to deal with a variety of planning and building officials, for that you should be thankful. In some communities it is a hot issue, I saw graffiti on a building in Mountain View the other day railing against their Department and the impact on the cost of housing.
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Old 06-25-2007, 07:34 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by Billy View Post
You may have already seen this page on our site, but for those who have not, its a Resource Page for Active Adult Retirement Living: A A Com Lists There is a Home Buying Info site listed that you might also find informative.
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Personally, we live in an adult community: (See Worry Free Housing) and don't know what all the fuss is about.
What I don't see iin your article is what to me is the most important potential drawback of this type of community-too much landlord power.

If you own the land in fee, and the owner association has some control over maintenance fees it should be fine. But this is not usually the case. Usually you "own" the structure, and pay rent to be allowed to continue occupying it on a pad, usually on a year to year lease. Talk about having you by the short hairs. Except in California where often there are rent control laws, imagine the situation of getting hit by large rent increases yearly. Each time you ask yourself- what can we do? Generally you can't move the things, so you either stay and pay, or sell out at a steep loss to someone who doesn't yet get the drill.

No thanks for me.

Ha
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Old 06-25-2007, 07:54 PM   #18
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What I don't see iin your article is what to me is the most important potential drawback of this type of community-too much landlord power.

.

Ha

In Florida a lot of the parks are being sold and the residents are left with houses`they can't move so they are basically worthless.
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Old 06-25-2007, 07:55 PM   #19
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In my mind, "manufactured house" covers a huge range of building quality. I'm thinking your interest is in wood frame construction that they haul to your site in sections.

If I were interested in one to go on a lot that I own (not in a builder's development), I'd ask the manufacturer for local addresses of houses at least 10 years old that they had "installed". Then I would ring some doorbells or make some phone calls.

If this manufacturer hasn't been putting houses in my area for a least 10 years, I'd look for someone else.
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Old 06-25-2007, 08:06 PM   #20
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In Florida a lot of the parks are being sold and the residents are left with houses`they can't move so they are basically worthless.

Agree with Ha and you on the idea that owning the home and paying rent for the pad is not the best situation. Trailer parks do get sold... or shut-down all together. Not to mention that prices can be increased and you are at their mercy (it is costly to move your mobile home).

When I started the thread, I did not specify... but I was meant a modular (pre-fab) home placed on a conventional single family lot (or a couple acres).
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