What’s the difference between manufactured and modular homes?

Homes on display at home sales center

By now you may know that factory-built homes can be built as manufactured or modular. But what is the difference between them and which one is best for you?

Visually, manufactured and modular homes are very similar. In fact, it is often hard to distinguish them from site-built homes. The main difference between manufactured and modular homes are the construction codes they are built to.

Manufactured homes are built on a steel frame that is designed to be used with or without a permanent foundation when connected to the required utilities. They are delivered to the home site in one or multiple sections and may be placed on private property or in a land-lease community. Manufactured homes are built to the federal Manufactured Home Construction and Safety Standards Act, and enforced by the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD).

Modular homes begin as components, which are designed, engineered and partially assembled in a controlled factory environment. Components come together at the building site and the home is completed by a builder licensed under standards enforced by state and local agencies. Modular homes may be one- or two-story dwellings and are placed only on private property. These homes are built to the State of Michigan Residential Building Code.

Both manufactured and modular homes have countless floor plans and options to choose from. Features such as vaulted ceilings, gourmet kitchens, mud rooms, smart-home technology, walk-in closets, fireplaces, name-brand appliances, freestanding tubs and other upgrades. In addition, available exterior designs are compatible with almost any neighborhood and may include covered porches, decks and garages.

Determining which one is right for you comes down to home placement. The majority of land-lease communities are restricted to manufactured homes. Private property home placement requirements may allow for modular or manufactured, depending on the building requirements within the city or town where the home will be located.

To begin your home search visit www.michhome.org and search MMHA member home sellers and communities near you. The expert sales consultants will guide you through your homebuying process.

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