· Mobile homes, also known as "manufactured homes," are built in a factory and placed on a trailer chassis to allow them to be moved. Mobile homes are sometimes placed in a mobile home park or on leased land. In these cases, the owner rents a space or leases land, but owns the mobile home itself.
· Alternatively, mobile home owners can place mobile homes on land they own or are buying under contract.
· So what are some Advantages and or Disadvantages of buying a Mobile Home
· One advantage to mobile homes is that they are often a lower-cost option to having a stick-built home custom build for you.
· Making homeownership easier to achieve and more affordable.
· Since mobile homes usually cost less per square foot than a stick-built home, you can get more space for your money.
· Just as an aside…There are some stick-built home builders that have models that allow them to build homes for prices similar to mobile homes….we are happy to recommend a couple of local builders and you can compare the quality of construction with a newer mobile home.
· Another advantage you might find with mobile homes is flexibility. Since mobile homes are usually more affordable than a stick-built home and only semi-permanent, if you own land, you can place a mobile home on it now and remove it in the future
· Though removal isn't as easy as it sounds, given the plumbing and other attachments. But, this might be an option if you are uncertain you want to own the land long term, and do not want to commit to a stick-built home now, or cannot afford a stick-built home right now.
· An additional advantage mobile homes offer is that they are usually built in controlled environments. This means they can be consistently built to a high standard. And because they are manufactured in such conditions, construction delays due to weather or difficulty scheduling subcontractors are less likely.
· A few other advantages are timing – many people don’t want to wait for a stick built home to be completed and in the past ordering a manufactured home meant you could have it ready to move into in a matter of months, but since COVID the backlog for ordering a manufactured home can be up to a year or longer.
· Another advantage if you own land in a remote area you cannot always get a Builder or Subcontractor to build on land that is far out or you have to pay extra so having a manufactured home built instead is a good option.
Disadvantages of Buying a Mobile Home
· A disadvantage of buying a mobile home is that its value will depreciate especially if you plan to put it in a mobile home park. Like a new car, a manufacture home in a mobile home park is considered “personal property” rather than “real property” once a mobile home leaves the factory, it drops in value. "Real property" is defined as land and anything attached to it permanently. Anything that can be removed without "injury" to the land is not real property. Personal property, on the other hand, is anything that is movable and not classified as real property. Even though mobile homes are not easily removed from land once placed, like I mentioned before, they are still considered personal property (although in many locations a person who owns both the mobile home and underlying land can convert the mobile home to real property by taking some affirmative steps). On the other hand, stick-built homes are considered part of the real property.
· A related disadvantage is that mobile homes, because they are personal property, are usually more expensive to finance. Personal property loans, sometimes called "chattel loans," usually come with higher interest rates and shorter terms than a mortgage loan.
· Stick-built homes, on the other hand, normally appreciate in value over time because the stick-built home owner almost always owns the underlying land.
· A person who owns both the land and the mobile home in our region will usually see the value of the combined property increase over time, but that is likely the result of the underlying land increasing in value, and will depend on the market. Being in a Seller’s market with a home shortage going on manufactured homes have also increased in value substantially over the last few years, as long as they have been well maintained.
· Additional disadvantages to mobile homes have to do with them typically being located in a mobile home park. Despite "owning" your actual home, you will still have a landlord, to whom you will have to pay rent and answer to for your compliance with park rules. The landlord might at some point decide to evict you, in which case you'll be faced with either moving or selling your mobile home.
· Mobile homes are not easy to resell, especially when located in a mobile home park. Because they are relatively immobile after being set up, unless the buyer wants to keep the mobile home where it is, finding a buyer can be a challenge. It can cost several thousand dollars to move a mobile home.
· This might not be a disadvantage, though, if the mobile home and land are sold together, just like a stick-built house. However, despite significant advances in the quality of mobile home construction, there is still a stigma attached to mobile home ownership that could turn some buyers off.
· A final disadvantage is that, unlike stick-built homes, which are built on permanent foundations, mobile homes are usually placed on temporary foundations. During a natural disaster, like an earthquake or severe storm, mobile homes can be more prone to damage. Here in our area we see more manufactured homes built on land on block foundations and strapped down which makes this less of a problem.
· Plus modern mobile homes can provide a quality, cost-effective alternative to a stick----built home. However, they have some disadvantages to stick built homes that you need to consider. Factors to consider, such as costs, laws that impact mobile home value, and low cost stick-built alternatives vary from region to region, so be sure to do your research.