As we head into the next decade, the US will be faced with a continuing epidemic in the area of affordable housing. With housing prices skyrocketing in many areas, many would-be buyers have been forced out of the market. At the same time, zoning and HOA guidelines have put a damper on some of the most affordable housing options, regulating them to designated areas only. And then there's the issue of public perception. What options are available that are affordable without succumbing to poor quality? This is exactly the issue that many experts are taking on today.
Manufactured Homes are Affordable!
No matter which way you look at it, manufactured homes cost up to 40% less than site-built homes of the same size and quality. How is that possible? It's possible because all of the materials and labor are handled through a single facility, where a crew is able to reproduce houses around the same basic frame over and over without wasted time. These manufacturing facilities buy material in bulk, and build continuously, regardless of weather conditions or other outside factors that could slow down a traditional builder. This reduction in wasted time and materials means more cost savings for the consumer.
But Manufactured Homes Belong in Trailer Parks... Or Do They?
When someone mentions manufactured homes, people are quick to pass judgment on old tin-sided trailers clustered around a ramshackle trailer park. In truth, new housing and transportation regulations have changed the landscape of manufacturing homes. This means that manufacturers are now required to meet the same safety and quality guidelines as traditional homes, as well as any additional guidelines that make the home safe for transporting on a truck. Typically, this means that manufactured homes have additional structural elements to keep them sturdy while moving.
In addition, a ton of new products and technologies have been rolled out to manufactured homes these days, so they are nearly indistinguishable from a stick-built house. It begins with laying a real foundation for the home, and anchoring it permanently so that it is able to withstand major weather events and other natural phenomena. The skirting around these homes has also been improved from the old aluminum or plastic siding to brick, stone, or stucco options that make it look just like a traditional foundation. Essentially, these houses are designed to look great in any neighborhood, not just a trailer community.
Why It's Important
Now you may be wondering why this information is so important for consumers, lenders and government leaders to know. The answer is that we need to change public perception about what manufactured homes can be so that more people see the benefits of choosing these homes as an affordable alternative to traditional housing. First, we need consumers to see that these houses are safe, durable, and built with quality in mind. Then we need those consumers to work with local leaders and bankers to ensure that these homes can be placed in neighborhoods where they belong. Once more people become aware of the possibilities of manufactured homes, we can take the first step toward solving the current housing crisis and ensure that housing remains affordable for as many people as possible.
At Triad Financial Services, we are always looking for ways to serve customers and investors with the best possible selection of products. We believe that the future of manufactured homes is brighter than ever, and affordable housing is a possibility if we take advantage of the manufacturing technologies that are already in use today. To learn more about manufactured homes and why they are the right choice for your bank or credit union, and how you can get on board the next wave of home buying, contact us today.