In an age where the average home can set you back thousands (if not millions), many of us are seeking a more affordable alternative to the classic bricks-and-mortar build.
Enter: the mobile home. Despite our love for this quirky alternative ebbing and flowing throughout the years, it’s surging in popularity. It’s hardly a surprise. I mean, what’s not to love?
If the idea of living for less has piqued your interest, manufactured homes, or mobile homes, could be the sweet spot you’re looking for. In 2020 and 2021, the average sales price of new homes in the US saw a pretty eye-watering increase – so strike while the irons hot.
If you’re in the market for a mobile home, though, this is easier said than done. Where exactly do you find the right mobile home, and how do you go about buying one? Well, you’ve come to the right place.
If you’re ready to ditch the cookie-cutter suburban life and take a leap of faith, keep reading to find out where exactly you can buy a mobile home and how to do it right.
Mobile Home Dealers
Buying your mobile home from a dealer is one of the most popular options. Properties are new, made to order, and often inexpensive.
Mobile home dealers and manufactured home centers often have sales and factory centers, where prospective buyers can come to peruse the homes on offer and talk to a specialist about their requirements.
You can tour model homes, see some houses being built, and discuss your vision in-depth with specialist engineers and sales advisors.
It’s important to remember that ‘mobile home’ is something of an umbrella term. There are different subtypes such as modular homes, single wide, and double-wide homes, and not every dealer will stock what you’re looking for.
Many dealers are also restricted to selling in specific states. Make sure you explore the options local to you and visit the manufacturers who specialize in your dream mobile home at the most affordable price.
If you want a mobile home to be your permanent dwelling, and you intend to erect it on land that you own rather than using it as a holiday home, mobile home dealers are often the best people to buy from.
Mobile Home Parks or Communities
If you want your mobile home to be more of a holiday home than a permanent home, you could purchase one directly from a mobile park or community. However, this does come with its limitations.
Often, if you buy a mobile home from a park, you’ll own the home but not the land it’s pitched on. This means you won’t technically have complete ownership of the property; plus, some parks can use this method to impose limitations on how long you can occupy the home.
In many cases, you’ll only be able to live in your mobile home at a specific time of year (such as the summer), which makes this option more appropriate for a getaway holiday home than a start at a new life.
However, the rules for these parks and communities vary widely. While some parks may only let you occupy the property during the summer, others may allow you to live there all year round (this may be subject to additional fees).
Depending on where in the world you want to buy your mobile home, you may need to apply for a license to make it your forever property.
Federal Government Real Estate
Sometimes, the U.S General Services Administration sells or leases different types of residential or commercial property, and even land, to interested parties.
Eagled-eyed buyers may be lucky enough to find mobile homes listed on these websites, and the best bit? It’s an auction!
This means you’re likely to snap up a used mobile home for significantly less than a new build and sometimes even cheaper than second-hand homes sold through dealers.
If you’re in no real rush to move and you’re willing to be patient, keeping a close eye on GSA auctions can provide you with a golden opportunity to purchase a mobile home – especially if you’re after a good deal and you’re not bothered about obtaining a new build.
Last but not least, we have the online option. This doesn’t have to mean haggling a stranger for a good deal on eBay – quite the opposite!
Most reputable manufacturers will allow you to explore their inventory online and take virtual tours of their mobile homes on their websites.
Whether you’re after single-wide, double-wide, french doors, or a hot pink exterior, you can now buy your new mobile home online or even via the phone.
It goes without saying that if you do this, you should still go and visit your home before it’s delivered. Nothing quite beats the experience of viewing a property in person (plus, it’s the best way to check for any faults with the build).
However, it can save time and money if you can snap up an excellent online deal.
Some manufacturers will even let you order your desired upgrades when you purchase your home online. This means you’ll get your home, and all your dream modifications, without having to view it in person. It’s not for everyone, but it’s certainly a convenient option.
Purchasing a new mobile home is a significant investment. It may be cheaper than your standard property, but it’s still a large amount of money, and it’s not a decision to take lightly.
Before purchasing a home, make sure you research each manufacturer thoroughly. Remember: not every manufacturer will share your vision, and some may not even engineer the specific property you’re seeking.
Before you take the leap, shop around, talk to the professionals and consider your budget, especially if you need to purchase or rent land.
With the proper research, the right budget, and the appropriate manufacturer, there’s no reason why you can’t live for less and live in style with a brand new mobile home!