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      05-26-2023, 07:52 PM   #1
c1pher
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Pre-Fab and Modular Homes

Maybe this is an odd question for people talking about luxury vehicles but I am looking at building in a rural area and itís very challenging to find anyone to build a custom home. Growing up, I lived in a trailer home and it seems like itís much easier to get something like that where Iím looking to put a home. Curious on any thoughts or experience people have on this topic. Thank you.
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      05-26-2023, 08:38 PM   #2
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I don't know much about them, but having lived in SFL most of my life I'm use to solid concrete block homes. When we started looking for something in NC I got very confused as to what was a mobile home vs a modular home vs a stick home. Honestly with a lot of houses using siding they all kinda blend together for me. Plus we have seen some really nice modular homes that I personally would not have known it was modular unless I was told.

My main concern with these would be #1 value. I have always heard that at least mobile homes go down in value, not sure if that's true and if it applies to modular homes also. #2 would be longevity, do they last just as long as stick houses? Do they have any issues specific to modular/mobile homes? #3 Depending on where you live how do they handle storms etc.
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      05-26-2023, 09:54 PM   #3
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I used to do IT work for a company called Go Modular. Their modular homes were amazing. The owners lived in one and it was huge. Like a normal large Colonial. 5bd, 4ba, etc. It was built using the same rectangular boxes stacked on top of each other or side by side. The boxes were all prefabbed in a factory with door and window openings already in place, depending on the room config. Larger rooms like a living room had one mostly open side so two boxes made a large room. The boxes were trucked out to the site and a crane put them in place. Once the stacking process began, the house went up really quickly. The roof structure was pretty much as a normal house would use.

I didn't work there long enough to know if their houses held up as well as normal builds, but the wood and construction of walls and so on was the same. And since the wood never got exposed to the elements, I'd assume it had no issues with warping or rot. I also don't know how much less one cost vs a normal build. You still need a foundation and all the other utility work.
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      05-27-2023, 08:14 AM   #4
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Our retirement house will be the Garage Mahal, built on a slab using a steel building kit. There are companies that sell steel home and barndominium kits that you may want to check out. I am not a fan of wood in houses, but a similar setup can be done inside a pole barn shell that should be second nature to builders in rural areas.....
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      05-27-2023, 09:46 AM   #5
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Get with the planning and zoning for your area to ensure you can. I live in a small mountain town right now and were surprised to see that modular homes are not allowed even though it is a rural area.

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Originally Posted by vreihen16 View Post
Our retirement house will be the Garage Mahal, built on a slab using a steel building kit. There are companies that sell steel home and barndominium kits that you may want to check out. I am not a fan of wood in houses, but a similar setup can be done inside a pole barn shell that should be second nature to builders in rural areas.....
We recently purchased some acres and are considering to build the shop first to live out of while we build the house. Something like this could be a good idea. Get a good post-frame construction of a shell and the interior is a blank canvas to do whatever, however you want.
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      05-27-2023, 10:56 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by spazzyfry123 View Post
Get with the planning and zoning for your area to ensure you can. I live in a small mountain town right now and were surprised to see that modular homes are not allowed even though it is a rural area.



We recently purchased some acres and are considering to build the shop first to live out of while we build the house. Something like this could be a good idea. Get a good post-frame construction of a shell and the interior is a blank canvas to do whatever, however you want.
I am considering retiring and donít need a mansion. But would like good enough quality that I donít have to worry about. Similar situation as you. Havenít chosen a lot yet but know the general area.
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      05-27-2023, 12:02 PM   #7
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I bought my MiL a manufactured home (it's really not mobile) and had it dropped onto a lot in a 55+ park several years back. The park is nice and they collectively own the land, so she doesn't pay rent but rather a percentage of the upkeep and taxes. The home itself is all wood construction and is indistinguishable from a stick-built home. It's not high-end construction, but we had it built with granite countertops, tile showers/backsplashes/etc. It's got high ceilings, stainless appliances, plenty of windows and an open-plan living area. 3br, 2ba with a big master and plenty of closet space. There's a nice deck on one side that we had built. The only thing that is different from a "real" home, really, is that it's base is a dozen or so steel beams and they're sitting on adjustable metal piers.

The downsides are costs, in the sense that it's not considered a home, but personal property. So the interest rate on the note was considerably higher (3%) than a mortgage at the time. And it's taxed as personal property so depending on where you live that could mean higher or lower taxes. But it'll last a good long time and the interior can be upgraded as any home is. Frankly, we may end up living there someday ourselves. After she's passed, of course, the reason I bought it in the first place is that my DW was having no part of her moving in with us.
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      05-27-2023, 03:32 PM   #8
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One advantage I’ve seen in modular/manufactured homes of friends in Arizona is that they are built as one story, with only about a 1/2 height step for entry from the carport area. This is really convenient for older folks who can’t get up 2-3 steps just to enter the house. The building construction seems similar to trailer houses, but the siting (not up off the ground like a trailer) seems way more convenient.
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      05-27-2023, 07:54 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by spazzyfry123 View Post
We recently purchased some acres and are considering to build the shop first to live out of while we build the house. Something like this could be a good idea. Get a good post-frame construction of a shell and the interior is a blank canvas to do whatever, however you want.
Yup. I was actually standing on our acreage today, watching the rain water runoff in some areas that I was concerned about. I think that we have the locations selected for the Garage Mahal, septic system, and driveway after several hours slogging around in the rain today.....
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      05-28-2023, 06:43 AM   #10
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There are a lot of them around, from old ramshackle hovels to some pretty nice places. I’d focus on being sure the underside is well insulated and protected from raccoons and other nesters, and that the entire structure is energy star rated. Proper foundation prep is a must as well - stacked cinder blocks (w/o mortar) really don’t cut it. Fires are not uncommon where people use propane or other open flame heating/cooking (even lump coal in some areas), so go all electric.
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      05-30-2023, 07:18 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by M_Six View Post
I used to do IT work for a company called Go Modular. Their modular homes were amazing.
Just googled, I didnt even know that was possible! Those are wild
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      05-30-2023, 09:36 PM   #12
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The distinction seems to lie in whether the home has a steel trailer-like frame or not. Or whether it could hypothetically be transported to another site. "Trailer home" of yesteryear with jalousie windows, etc.

Non-steel frame non-transportable homes, regardless of label, are factory-made "stick" built homes. To the untrained observer these can be indistinguishable from site-built stick-built homes.

Last edited by chassis; 06-01-2023 at 08:40 PM..
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      06-01-2023, 01:29 PM   #13
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Calling MKSixer Give this man the low-down on container homes!
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      06-01-2023, 02:22 PM   #14
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There's a Barndominium Designs and Layouts FB page. Might be worth checking out for some design ideas and information.
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      06-02-2023, 02:39 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by c1pher View Post
Maybe this is an odd question for people talking about luxury vehicles but I am looking at building in a rural area and itís very challenging to find anyone to build a custom home. Growing up, I lived in a trailer home and it seems like itís much easier to get something like that where Iím looking to put a home. Curious on any thoughts or experience people have on this topic. Thank you.
There are quite a handful of luxury modular home builders out of the NE and Western US.

Factory built homes are typically better built vs the population of stick built homes.
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      06-02-2023, 05:10 PM   #16
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Id seen these in the news lately
Thought some were very good looking

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/art...ouses-50K.html
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