So you’ve decided it’s time to make a change and find a new place to call home. Maybe you’re looking to downsize, simplify your life, or move to a new area. Whatever the reason, a manufactured or modular home could be an appealing and affordable housing option for you. But do you know the difference between the two and which might suit your needs best? Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered.
In this blog, we’ll break down the key differences between manufactured and modular homes. We’ll look at how they’re constructed, the flexibility and customization options available, how permanent they are, and their costs. By the end, you’ll have a clear understanding of both types of homes so you can determine which is the best fit for your situation and budget. The choice is in your hands – a manufactured home for less money upfront that you can move later, or a modular home as a permanent residence customized to your liking. Ready to learn more? Let’s dive in.
Modular Homes vs. Manufactured Homes: Understanding the Difference
When it comes to affordable housing options, manufactured homes, and modular homes are often confused. While they share some similarities, there are key differences to understand before you buy.
Manufactured homes, also known as mobile homes, are built in a factory and transported on wheels to the installation site. They sit on a chassis and can be relocated. Modular homes are also built in a factory, but they are transported on flatbeds and craned onto a permanent foundation at the site.
Manufactured homes typically use materials and construction methods that allow them to be moved, so they may have shorter lifespans. Modular homes use standard building materials and construction techniques, so they can last as long as site-built homes.
Manufactured homes usually have a metal or vinyl exterior and a flat roof. Modular homes can have various exterior siding options and roof styles to match site-built homes.
Manufactured homes require utility hookups for power, water, and sewage. Modular homes have utilities connected on-site like a standard home.
Financing and insurance for manufactured homes can be more limited. Modular homes have the same options as site-built homes.
While manufactured homes serve an important need, modular homes are more comparable to traditional site-built homes in terms of quality, customization, and investment potential. The choice comes down to your needs, budget, and how long you plan to stay in your home. With the right option and care, either can make a cozy place to call your own.
The Modular Home Building Process: Precision and Quality Control
When it comes to modular homes, precision and quality are key. Modular homes are built in sections in a factory, then delivered and assembled on your building site. This controlled environment means each module is constructed to exacting standards using high-quality materials.
Modules are built on an assembly line by trained technicians using state-of-the-art equipment. This results in a higher quality product with tighter tolerances than a standard site-built home.
Materials are carefully inspected to ensure there are no defects before and during the build. The controlled environment reduces exposure to weather and minimizes waste.
Modules are designed to fit together seamlessly with electrical, plumbing, and HVAC systems pre-installed. Once assembled on-site, the connections between modules are nearly undetectable.
A modular home feels just like a traditional home but is eco-friendly and energy efficient. Many styles are available to suit your needs, from cozy cottages to spacious family homes. You can even customize the floor plan to your liking.
While the modules are being built in the factory, site prep work is completed at your location including excavating the land, installing utilities, and pouring the foundation. Once the site is ready, the modules are delivered and joined together in just days. A single modular home can be installed in less than a week with minimal disruption.
Choosing a modular home is a smart, sustainable option. You get a high-quality, customized home in a fraction of the time, all while reducing waste and environmental impact. Modular is the modern way to build. Why wait? A new home could be just weeks away!
Benefits of Choosing a Modular Home
One of the biggest benefits of choosing a modular home is the ability to customize it to your needs and tastes. Unlike manufactured homes that come pre-built, modular homes are constructed in sections at a factory, then transported and assembled on your land. This allows you to choose floor plans, facades, and interior options to create a home tailored to your lifestyle.
Want an open-concept kitchen, extra bedrooms, and a home office? No problem. Interested in modern, craftsman, or farmhouse styles? You have options. Energy-efficient features, smart home automation, and ADA accessibility are all available based on your selections. Work with designers to pick colors, fixtures, flooring, cabinetry, and everything in between. The flexibility of modular construction means you can build your ideal home from the ground up.
Modular homes are often more budget-friendly than site-built homes. Materials and components are pre-built in a controlled factory setting, reducing waste and keeping costs in check. Build times are faster too, saving you money. Modular homes can cost 20-30% less per square foot than site-built homes. They’re a smart, affordable choice if you want a high-quality custom home without a high-end price tag.
Green and Sustainable
Eco-friendly and energy-efficient, modular homes are a sustainable housing option. They are constructed from sustainable, recycled, and non-toxic materials. Advanced insulation, solar power readiness, and high-performance HVAC systems mean lower utility bills and a smaller environmental footprint. Because building occurs off-site, there is also less waste and pollution. For an environmentally-conscious home, modular is the way to go.
Choosing a modular home over other options offers many benefits. You can have an efficient, customized home built to your exact needs and still be kind to your wallet and the planet. For a house you’ll love that’s built to last, modular construction is the smart choice.
Cost Savings of Modular Home Construction
When it comes to cost, modular homes have some significant advantages over manufactured homes.
Lower Upfront Costs
The modular home construction process allows for lower upfront costs in a few ways:
Materials are purchased in bulk, reducing costs. The modules are built in a factory, allowing the builder to buy materials in large quantities at lower prices.
Less waste. The controlled factory environment reduces excess material waste and allows for tighter quality control.
Faster build time. Since much of the construction is done off-site, the on-site build time is reduced significantly. This lowers costs like financing, insurance, and utilities during construction.
While modular homes are pre-built in sections, you still have flexibility in customizing the final home design. You can:
Choose from a variety of floor plans and exterior styles. Many companies offer plans or will work with you to create custom plans.
Select high-quality finishes like hardwood floors, granite countertops, and stainless steel appliances.
Add special features such as porches, garages, and extra bedrooms.
The modules can be arranged in many configurations to suit your needs.
Modular homes are well-insulated and sealed, reducing heating and cooling costs over the lifetime of the home. Components like windows, doors, and roofs are installed at the factory, minimizing air leaks and maximizing energy efficiency.
Because modular homes are built to the same state building codes as site-built homes, they retain their resale value well over time. They offer the space and amenities of a traditional home and can be tailored to fit the character of the surrounding neighborhood.
While the upfront costs of a modular home may be slightly higher than a manufactured home, the long-term savings in energy, maintenance, and resale value often make modular construction the more affordable choice. For the budget-conscious homebuyer looking for quality and customization, modular homes are worth considering.
Popular Modular Home Designs and Floor Plans
The single-wide is the most popular and affordable modular home design. As the name suggests, this home arrives in a single section that is towed to your site and installed. Single-wides typically range from 500 to 1,500 square feet, with open floor plans and minimal interior walls. If you’re looking for a starter home or place to downsize, a single-wide modular could be a great, budget-friendly option.
For a larger modular home, consider a double-wide. This style arrives in two separate sections that are joined together on-site. Double-wides offer 1,500 to 3,000 square feet of living space, with more room for bedrooms, bathrooms, and living areas. The additional space also allows for more customization with the layout and design. Double-wides are ideal for growing families or those who simply want more room to spread out.
If you need an even bigger modular house, multi-section homes are comprised of three or more sections combined. These spacious designs range up to 5,000 square feet or more. Multi-section modular homes have a similar appearance to traditional site-built homes with their increased size and scale. They also allow for lots of flexibility in creating your ideal floor plan with numerous bedrooms, bathrooms, living spaces, and custom features. For many, a multi-section modular feels like the perfect balance of affordability, quality, and size.
Some modular home manufacturers also offer fully custom home designs. You can work with their architects and designers to create a one-of-a-kind modular home tailored to your needs, style preferences, and budget. A custom modular takes longer to produce but allows you to get the home of your dreams with high-quality craftsmanship and materials. For the ultimate in flexibility and customization, a custom modular home may be well worth considering.
So there you have it—the key differences between manufactured and modular homes laid out for you. At the end of the day, the choice comes down to your needs, budget, and preferences. If having a home built from scratch with a custom design is important, a modular home may be the way to go. If affordability and speedy construction are higher priorities, a manufactured home could be a great option. Many people find that a hybrid approach, using manufactured components for some areas like bedrooms and bathrooms but customizing other spaces, gives them the best of both worlds. Whatever you decide, make sure to do thorough research on any builders you’re considering to ensure a high-quality, enjoyable end result. The most important thing is that you end up with a place you’re proud to call home.
Go Modular is a leading modular home builder. The company specializes in designing and constructing high-quality, custom modular homes. Go Modular’s team of experts help clients every step of the way, from design and floor planning to arranging financing and transportation.
By building homes off-site in a controlled factory environment, Go Modular is able to achieve higher quality standards, less waste, and faster construction times. Their modular building methods allow for endless customization options while maintaining efficiency and sustainability.