Manufactured Home Additions Basics: Know Before You Grow

General Article

Mobile homes are marvels in how they use every inch of space. When you need more than a few more nooks and crannies, you might consider an addition to create substantial space. Whether you need a deck, a shed, a carport, or another room, manufactured home additions can make your home more comfortable and more suitable for your family. Since mobile homes are different than traditionally constructed homes, it’s important to understand these basics of manufactured home additions before making a decision.

Is it realistic? Prices on manufactured homes in the same community may vary widely. Before taking on an extensive project that will cost thousands of dollars, first consider if moving is a more cost-effective option. Remember that too many costly changes can out price your home for the neighborhood.

How will an addition affect the local codes? Adding a room, carport, or even a deck might make your home occupy more of the land than local codes allow. Your local park owners may even prohibit certain types of additions. Make sure to check with both the city and your park managers before you get beyond the dream stage.

Do you have the land? Manufactured home additions take room. Even if they are legal, an addition that uses all your land will detract from the aesthetics of your property – and can annoy your neighbors.

Will it be attached to your home or freestanding? Additions attached to your home can be tricky. Mobile homes set atop a piece of land are ideally secured by footers that extend below the frostline. If your home is not secured this way, it can shift as the ground freezes and an addition will not move with it. With the proper footers, there may be some shift, but you can more safely attach a room. Even then, getting the floors to line up evenly is challenging.

What about utility connections? Pulling some wiring out to a carport or deck might be easy, but adding a room is more complex. You need to ask questions. Can your furnace handle the load? Can you add to your ductwork? Do you have the power capacity? Your addition may require that you upgrade systems to handle the extra load.

Who will do the work? Adding manufactured home additions such as porch or deck is a better DIY project than a whole room. Making additions to manufactured homes is different than adding to a site built property. If you think you can handle the work yourself, you should still consult with a builder who specializes in mobile home construction to make sure that your home can support an addition and advise where best to place it.

Should you consider a pre-built addition when you want to add room? Adding a turnkey addition will ensure that the new room is properly constructed to attach to your present home. Made at a factory, it will be delivered to your site for attachment. Considering that adding a room can run $75-250 per square foot when a contractor builds it from scratch, you will want to consider the pros and cons of site built vs. turnkey addition.

Knowing the basics of manufactured home additions will help you decide how to proceed when you home needs interior or exterior space. Before you decide, contact a mobile home specialist to help you decide whether to reorganize what you have, build an addition, or move to your next home.