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Frequently Asked Questions
"Trailers, mobile homes, modular homes, manufactured homes, site built homes ... how confusing! What's the difference?"
Trailers and Mobile Homes are homes that were built in a factory before Housing and Urban Development (a government agency, also known as HUD) introduced a federal building code in 1974. These terms are seldom used anymore, especially if you are talking about the factory built homes of today.
Site Built Homes built on site by a contractor using blue prints and plans engineered and approved under the local building code. A local building inspector must examine and approve the home. Since the builder is usually building only one home at a time, material costs are usually higher than ...
Modular Built Homes. These homes are built in a factory (which means they are protected from the weather during construction), brought to the site, and then (using a crane) lifted onto a foundation. The home (along with the foundation) must be approved to the local building code and inspected, just like a site built home. But consider this: the factory that builds the home is making more than one home at one time. So, they are going to get a better price on the materials they use. This usually makes the cost of a modular home less than a site built home (which, of course, saves you money).
Manufactured Homes ("Doublewides") are also built in a factory, but they are built according to HUD code (mentioned earlier). All HUD homes must pass a third party inspection as the home is being built at the factory. Also, because of the popularity of HUD type homes, factories building this type of home are making many homes at once, all to the same code. So, they are buying materials in bulk, resulting in even more savings for you.
One added note: Since 1999, the major structural
difference between a modular and a manufactured home is the steel frame (which stays with
the manufactured home). The modular home is set up on a load bearing foundation.