Tiny House or 4 Bedroom Colonial?

Are you a first-time homebuyer, downsizing retiree, or just looking for a place to call your own? A factory built home may be the answer. These homes come in all types and sizes from the better known double-wide to a 4 bedroom colonial, to a tiny house with a basement. In fact it is often difficult to tell from the curb if the home you’re looking at is factory built or the traditional “site” built home.

A Modular Home

Modular_Home_Trailer_iStock_4348317_MEDIUM.jpgThere are two types of factory built homes: modular and manufactured. A modular home is constructed in a factory, to state, local or regional building codes. It is typically built in two or three sections and these sections are transported and assembled on a building lot just like a traditional site built home.

The advantages of these modular homes are that they can be completely customized to meet the home-buyer’s tastes. Constructed to comply with appropriate building codes, the finished dwelling looks and feels just like a site built home. Also the cost of construction is sometimes less than the cost of a traditional construction, which may make this an affordable alternative to purchasing a site built home. The finished modular home, just like a site built home, is mortgage eligible.

A Manufactured Home

A manufactured home is a dwelling built on a permanent chassis and generally comes in single or two-section units with dimensions ranging from 8 feet or more wide and 40 feet or more long. Entirely factory built under the federal building code administered by the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), manufactured homes are made to meet the Federal Manufactured Home Construction and Safety Standard Act of June 15, 1976. The federal standards regulate design, construction, strength, durability, transportability, fire resistance, energy efficiency, and quality.

Each unit is labeled with a red tag (the HUD Construction Code Label) that is the manufacturer's certification that the home was built to conform to the HUD code.

These homes, which may be placed on a foundation, can include multi-wide and expandable manufactured homes. On-site additions, such as garages, decks, and porches, often add to the attractiveness of these dwellings making it difficult to readily distinguish them from modular and traditional homes.

DoubleWide_Home_iStock_21675402_MEDIUM.jpgWhile an existing manufactured home can be an affordable living solution for some families, finding a mortgage for them isn’t always easy. To determine if the property you’re considering is qualified, it is best to seek the advice of your Lender. But here are some general guidelines to help you determine if your manufactured home may qualify for a mortgage.

In general the manufactured home should:

1. Be designed as a one-unit family dwelling, this includes the home and the land on which the home resides;
2. Have a minimum of 400 sq. ft. in floor area for an FHA mortgage or 600 sq. ft. for a Conventional loan;
3. Be classified as real estate (must have evidence that the motor vehicle title was surrendered to the county/state and that the property is titled as Real Estate);
4. Be permanently affixed to the site, with the wheels and axles removed;
5. Have the HUD Construction Code Label, which is a red metal plate with silver lettering, permanently attached to the rear exterior siding of each section; and
6. Have the HUD Data Plate/Compliance Certificate, which is a paper document that contains, among other things, the manufacturer's name and trade/model number. The data plate also includes pertinent information about the unit, including a list of factory-installed equipment.

A good rule of thumb if you are seeking alternatives to traditional housing is to investigate your mortgage financing options up front to determine the type of mortgage you want for the home and lifestyle you’ve chosen. Why not start by talking to a ditech home loan specialist?

We have several financing options for manufactured homes, including FHA, Conventional Conforming, and VA mortgages. We can tell you how much of a mortgage loan you can afford and help you get that mortgage at a great rate. Call us today at 800-700-9212. We’ve got the loan to take you home!

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