Manufactured Versus Modular Housing: What You Need To Know

28 April 2015
 Categories: Construction & Contractors, Articles


When budget and time are tight, and you need a new home in a hurry, a manufactured or modular home may be the right choice. Though these two styles of homes are often referred to interchangeably, they're actually distinctly different. There are really only two major factors that manufactured homes and modular homes have in common: they're typically more affordable than stick-built homes, and they're faster to construct. If you're considering purchasing a modular or manufactured home, take the following benefits and disadvantages into consideration before taking the plunge:

Benefits of Manufactured Homes

You may hear manufactured houses referred to as mobile homes. These are homes that have been pre-constructed at the factory and mounted on wheels for quick and easy travel to the home site. Homes like these are usually more affordable than stick-built homes because most of the assembly happens in a factory-like environment. If you're considering purchasing a mobile home, however, you may still need the services of a contractor and construction crew to lay the foundation or build the basement for the home to rest upon. 

You may also need contruction transportiaon services, like those from Lien Transportation Co, to help dig out the area for and to build your foundation.

Once the home has been transported to the site, it's typically "installed" on the foundation, grounded, and connected to electricity and water. At this point, the homeowner can move in. It's not unusual for a manufactured home to be delivered, installed, and hooked up in a single day so long as the pre-construction phase of the job has already been performed. 

Additionally, if you decide to move later, you can take your manufactured home with you. 

Disadvantages of Manufactured Homes

Sadly, manufactured homes tend to depreciate in value over time, unlike stick-built homes. This makes it more difficult to secure a traditional homeowner's loan to purchase one. The cost of depreciation also makes manufactured housing a questionable investment. Many towns and cities also have tight zoning restrictions over where manufactured homes can and cannot be placed. So before you invest in a new manufactured home, make sure it's allowed on your lot. 

Benefits of Modular Housing

Portions of modular homes are also pre-built at the factory and then transported, in pieces, to the home site. The major difference is that this sort of home requires a construction crew to assemble it. Modular housing is also a quicker and easier alternative to a traditionally built home, and once it's assembled, it's difficult to tell the difference. Modular homes also appreciate in value over time, making them a sound investment. Because of this, it's much easier to get financing for the purchase of this type of home. 

Disadvantages of Modular Housing

Surprisingly, because many people still confuse modular homes with manufactured ones, a stigma still exists about this type of housing. If you purchase a modular home, you may have to field comments about "double-wide trailers" or about homes that aren't built to last. But these are just myths. Modular homes are just as durable as stick-built home, maybe even more so because the individual pieces are constructed to federal regulations that require them to withstand the trauma of travel. But this doesn't mean your neighbors will ever accept your modular home as a true construction. 

Regardless of which type of home is right for you, both give you quick and affordable alternatives to traditionally built homes. Both are attractive and spacious constructions that will allow you to live comfortably, and both are built to last for years. If you're having trouble affording your first traditional home, maybe it's time to look into the possibilities presented by modular or manufactured housing. Talk to your contractor today to find out whether these types of homes are workable solutions for your individual circumstance.