Buying A Manufactured Home

Many people are leaning toward buying a manufactured home because the cost to buy is so much cheaper than a standard home. Manufactured homes are constructed by a manufacturer and delivered to the property where it will have the finishing touches put on and be connected to utilities.

There are some very important requirements for manufactured homes if you are trying to get a loan on them.

1. It must be considered "real estate": To be considered "real estate" the property must be permanently affixed to the ground on an acceptable foundation, and you must own, or lease the land on acceptable terms. I.E. you cannot get real estate financing on a mobile/ manufactured home in a "mobile home park".

2. The permanent foundation: The permit for this foundation is called a "433". Typically it will require "posts and piers" for the manufactured home to rest on and "straps" to keep the home stable in the event of an earthquake/ other movement. Depending on the type of loan, repairs or additional equipment for the foundation may be required to be acceptable for lenders to give a loan on the property.

3. Age of the home: The oldest manufactured home that you can get a loan on had to have been built on or before June 15th, 1976.

4. Only moved once: The manufactured home must have moved directly from the manufacturer to the property you are trying to buy. If it was moved more than once, you will not be able to get real estate financing on it.

5. Land verses home value: It is common for people to buy a manufactured home on at least a few acres of land. You must be careful to make sure that the land is not more valuable than the home, or it could be difficult to get financing on it.

6. Non-permitted buildings on property: If there is a garage, guest house, other structure on the property that is not permitted, it may affect your ability to get the loan. The biggest thing that the underwriter will look at is the potential safety hazards. For this reason, it is usually required that any non- permitted gas, water or electric lines be removed. Typically the structure will be labeled as "storage" and given no value so that the property will be acceptable to the lender.

7. HUD tags/ IBTS: When underwriting a manufactured loan, the underwriter must be aware of the manufacturer and manufacture date, which will correspond with the "HUD tags", or labels that are affixed to the exterior siding of the home. If these are not available, it can be ordered through a 3rd party known as IBTS.

8. Well and Septic requirements: If you are purchasing a home on land, especially out of town, the property will most likely be hooked up to well and septic. If there is a well, an inspector must certify that the water is "potable" (drinkable). To test the water, they will look for harmful bacteria, possibly nitrates and also the rate of flow of water from the well, to make sure there is sufficient pressure. For a septic inspection, the inspector will make sure the tank and leech lines are far enough away from the property and will pump the tank until it is empty.

Every property is going to vary a bit, but this should be a helpful resource when looking at manufactured homes to buy!


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