The Most Frequently Asked
Questions & Answers about Modular Homes
Provided by The
National Association of Home Builders of the United States
1. What is a Building System?
Simply put, a building system is a highly engineered
method of producing buildings or building components in an efficient and cost
effective manner. The use of building systems is common in many different
types of residential and commercial construction.
A modular home is the culmination of one type of
building system. Modular homes actually begin as components; designed,
engineered and assembled in the controlled environment of a modern factory
sometimes hundreds of miles away from their final destination. It is when
these components come together on your building site and the final finish is
completed by your builder, that the components become a home for you and your
2. Tell Me More About The Modular Home Construction
Today's modular systems are models of efficiently
and quality assurance. The building process begins at the design phase.
Most modular producers use state of the art computer assisted design stations
which aid them in customizing floor plans and producing drawings and material
requirement list. Once designed, the building process begins. This
process is similar to what you've seen during the constriction of houses in your
neighborhood. The quality materials and care for detail, and the same
building codes and standards are observed. So what's different? Efficiency
and quality control!
Efficiency begins with modern factory assembly line
techniques. Your home travels to workstations, with all the building
trades represented. Work is never delayed by weather, subcontractor
no-shows or missing material. Quality engineering and modular construction
techniques significantly increase the energy efficiently of your modular home.
A quality control process provides 100% assurance that your home has been
inspected for code compliance and workmanship. In-plant inspectors as well
as independent inspections agencies inspect the home on behalf of your state &
3. How Long Does It Take To Build A Modular Home?
Speed and consistent quality are two of the many
advantages for choosing modular components for your new home. On the
average, a home consisting of two modules will be factory produced in six or
seven days. Once the manufacturing process is complete, typically with
interior finished right down to carpets and wall finish, the unit must be
transferred to the building site and placed on its foundation. Final
completion is usually handled by a local builder or general contractor and
includes connection of utilities to the home, and a short list of finish work.
Normally the home is completed in two or three weeks.
4. I Get Confused When I See The Term "Manufactured
Home" and "Modular Home". What's The Difference?
Manufactured homes, sometimes referred to as mobile homes,
are another type of building system and are constructed to a different building
standard. This standard, the Federal Construction Safety Standards Act
(HUD/CODE), unlike conventional building codes, requires manufactured homes to
be constructed on a non-removable steel chassis. Many communities have
restrictions on where manufactured homes can be located.
Modular and site-built homes on the other hand, are
constructed to the same building code required by your state, county and
specific locality and therefore are not restricted by building or zoning
regulations. Your new modular home is inspected at the assembly plant
during each phase of construction. Evidence of this inspection is normally
shown by the application of a State or inspection agency label of approval.
5. What Do Modular Homes Look Like?
Modular homes look like any other home.
Today's building technology has allowed modular manufacturers to build most any
style of home from a simple ranch to a highly customized contemporary.
And, it doesn't stop with houses. Modular producers are busy building
banks, schools, office buildings, motels and hotels. Chances are you've
been in many modular structures and probably never realized it.
6. Can I Design My Own Home Instead Of Using A Modular
Manufactures Standard Plan?
Yes. Most modular companies allow the customer
complete design flexibility. But remember, every manufacturer is
different. Engineering capabilities and product specifications will vary
from company to company.
7. I Know That Modular Homes Are Built To The Same
Codes As Site-Built Homes, But Is Financing Any Different?
There is no distinction between modular and site
built homes as far as appraisal or financing. Banks and Lending
Institutions treat both types of construction the same. Likewise, there is
no difference in insuring the modular property.
One Last Time, Review The Benefits Of Modular
Construction For Me.
- Highly engineered
- Constructed in a Climate Controlled Environment
- Efficient Building Process & Material Usage
- Energy Efficient
- In-Plant Inspections
- Consistent Quality
- Speed of Construction
- Design Flexibility
- Constructed to Meet or Exceed Local Building Codes
And One Last Item We Haven't Covered - COST!
When you add up all the labor, material and time
saving inherent in the modular building process, you will find that the price of
a modular home is generally lower than a traditionally built home of comparable
size. And you will keep saving money year after year, as the energy
efficiency of your home keeps your heating and cooling bills low. But
don't take our work for it, contact one of our homeowners and compare.