How to Make Your Manufactured Home Look More Like a Site-Built Home

Manufactured homes are affordable and can have all the same great qualities of a site-built home. But let’s be honest, it’s pretty easy to distinguish a standard factory-built home from a site-built home – not that this is a bad thing. However, if you’d like to make your manufactured home look more like a site-built home these ideas may help.

make your manufactured home look more like a site-built home - complete double wide remodel in Arkansas - after

Construction Upgrades That Make Your Manufactured Home Look More like a Site-Built Home

If you are fortunate enough to get to buy a new manufactured home there are a few factory upgrades that will help add value to your home and make it look more like a site-built home.

The most obvious upgrades to make a manufactured home look more like a site-built home are a higher roof pitch, extending the eaves around the home, and larger doors.

Upgrade to a Higher Roof Pitch

A roof pitch of at least 4/12 will help make a manufactured home look more like a site-built home. This helps snow and rain to slide off easier, too, so there’s more than just aesthetic benefits.

Extend the Eaves

Most site-built homes have a wide eave because it helps keep water away from the home’s windows and siding. Traditionally, an eave on a site-built home will be 12″ to 16″ wide.

Manufactured homes will usually have a 6″ eave with a 5″ rain gutter. The wider eaves usually go hand-in-hand with a higher roof pitch, too.

Install Larger Doors (Exterior and Interior)

As we talked about in our recent article, 10 Smart Upgrades for Your New Manufactured Home, doors make a huge difference in a home. Going up in size on both interior and exterior doors can make your manufactured look more like a site-built home.

In the most affordable manufactured homes you will likely see exterior doors made of aluminum that are 32″ wide and 74″ to 78″ tall. Your middle of the line models will probably have 36″ wide by 80″ tall exterior doors.

Going to a 6-panel insulated core door that’s 36″ x 80″ will make your home look more like a site-built home. Peepholes help, too.

Interior doors in most manufactured homes leave a lot to be desired. By replacing the hollow, tan boards with plastic doorknobs, with a real wood door will make a huge difference in your home.

Install Crown Molding and Trim

You don’t see a lot of crown molding in most manufactured homes- it’s expensive and time-consuming to install. Your high-end models will have it but not the more affordable. Manufactured homes can’t be the great affordable homes that they are if the factory can’t produce them at as reduced cost.

If you can add trim along the ceiling and floors yourself, though, you can give your home a wonderful makeover and make it look more like a site-built home. Learn how to install crown molding at HGTV. 

Install your manufactured home over a Basement Foundation

If money isn’t an issue and you are installing a new manufactured home you could put it above a basement. New techniques (and equipment) is making this option more affordable than it used to be.

There’s no doubt, putting a manufactured home on a basement foundation is a great way to make it look like a stick built home. This will also give your home added living space and that is always a plus. The manufactured home will require some modifications in order to make the basement area accessible but a good contractor will be able to tackle that for you.

Related: Read about placing a manufactured home Over a full basement here. 

make your manufactured home look more like a site-built home - Placing a Manufactured Home Over a Full Basement

Add a Garage Beside your Home

Another idea to make your manufactured home look more like a site-built home is a garage. It doesn’t necessarily need to be ‘attached’ to the home; a nice covered breezeway will create a cohesive look. If you can create an entryway into your home from the garage it would certainly create a site-built feel. The Home Advisor’s cost guide for adding a garage to your home may help. 

Related: Learn about mobile home additions here. 

make your manufactured home look more like a site-built home - mobile home additions - manufactured home remodel - new garage installed beside the home

Update your Curb Appeal

A porch and some landscaping added to the front of a manufactured home makes a huge difference! Even if you aren’t trying to make your manufactured home look more like a site-built home adding a deck or porch to your home is a great idea.

Related: See 45 Great Manufactured Home Porch Designs here. 

The right landscaping will work wonders to help blend your manufactured home into the property. Consider a sidewalk, bushes, or a couple of trees planted in the yard to complete the look. Make the manufactured home appear to have been there for years, even if it was installed a month ago.

make your manufactured home look more like a site-built home - porch build
A new porch made a huge difference to this manufactured home.

Related: 10 Great Landscaping Ideas for Mobile Homes

make your manufactured home look more like a site-built home - landscaping
New landscaping for a manufactured home!

Summary: How to Make Your Manufactured Home Look More like a Site-Built Home

We hope these tips to make your manufactured home look more like a site-built home will help!

Let me be clear that there’s nothing wrong with an affordable home or a home that doesn’t look like a site-built home. It’s good to be different and unique! Some of us don’t need all the fancy bells and whistles in a home, we don’t need a high pitched roof, or a fancy spa tub, we just need a home that won’t take three jobs to pay for. These ideas are great ways to give your home a makeover and perhaps even raise its value and that’s never a bad thing.

Manufactured homes are so awesome because they provide an opportunity for a regular person like me (and you) to own a home even when life isn’t all candy drops and gumballs. We can have a comfortable, stylish home even if we don’t make a lot of money. They are different from site-built homes because they are more affordable and that’s what is so great about them!

Still looking for inspiration? Click here to see all of our decorating articles.

Thanks for reading Mobile Home Living!

Share This

Crystal Adkins
Crystal Adkins

Crystal Adkins created Mobile Home Living in 2011 after buying a 1978 single wide and searching online for mobile home remodeling ideas but finding very little. Today, it's the most popular resource in America for mobile home information and inspiration and has been visited over 40 million times.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

  1. Hi Shirley,

    I think you have it all figured out! As long as the original shingles and felt are removed before installing the new you should be fine. 30 psi is fairly standard for manufactured homes but I’m not educated on the formula for the live load Vs the dead load calculations for roofing. As far as contractors go, I’d call your local manufactured home dealerships and see if they can recommend anyone. Many contractors refuse to work on mobile and manufactured homes so websites like Angie’s List and Home Advisor seem to be useless for mobile homeowners, unfortunately. Call your local mobile home supply store and park managers as well.

    Please take photos of the work as it’s being done – I would love to see it (especially since you know exactly what you want – most homeowners aren’t as well prepared or knowledgeable as you).

    Best of luck!

  2. I have a 1995 Friendship single wide home. It is time for a new roof, siding and windows. I believe it to have a 30 psi on the roof with a shingled 3:12 pitch. I purchased it used. I live in northern Minnesota and do get a fair amount of snow on the roof which I keep shoveled off. My concern is adding too much weight. I am looking to hire a contractor to do the repairs. I still need to be budget conscious but not at the expense of substandard work and materials. (1) I will start with the roof. I am not sure of the make up of the roof. considerations are what gauge of underlayment felt to be used, type and weight of shingles, adding a drip edge if there is none, adding a ice and water shield, should the shingles overhang about a 1/2″? etc. (2) siding: adding a .42 or .46 gauge vinyl siding, adding 7/16 osb sheathing (only has black foam type sheathing now), house wrap. (3) I want to install Jeld wen new construction windows with nailing flanges (possibly with brickmould?) while the siding is off. (4) I would like to add laminate flooring (which I have in my shed). The prior water heater leaked and caused the flooring to get wet which will have to be partially replaced in the bedroom/closet area. The current gas water heater is 10 or 11 years old now which I may replace when I have the flooring repaired. I will have a tray put under the water heater if one exists. The population is only about 5000 here and contractors may be limited especially regarding manufactured homes? I border Fort Frances Ontario Canada. Any suggestions regarding weight restrictions, etc. would be greatly appreciated.

  3. Hi Tina,

    Give your local manufactured home dealerships a call and ask for recommendations (call them all, Clayton, Fleetwood, Skyline, etc.). I did a little online searching and came up with a company named Nelson (I do not know the company and I’m not affiliated, I just found it on Google here).

    Make sure they have insurance and licensing. Best of luck!

  4. Wonderful article. Since appearing in your magazine my wife and I upgraded our curb appeal by adding a stone and cedar shake exterior to our home.

  5. Mine has no eaves on the end, the side exposed to the street and I hate the look of it. None of the other houses have that flat look and it’s one of the changes I want for it. Great suggestion and happy to see it referenced here.

    It’s funny, where I live many of the stick built houses in certain subdivisions look exactly like the designs coming from a factory, so not worried too much about adding site built features to blend in.

    Ideally, I’d be living in a period correct single or double wide from the 50s or 60s, just for the style. Yes, it’s a sickness.

    The one I own now is a 2002 4 bedroom monster and the nicest place I’ve ever lived [lots of small LA apartments built in the 20s and 30s, a condo from 1957 and an early San Fernando Valley suburban dream from 1947 900 or so sq ft ]. Lots of stick built features already in it and nicer than a lot of the rundown, overpriced sludge I see in local real estate ads.

    Nice landscaping, weed control and exterior maintenance go a long way without adding anything expensive.

    And given the rather ratty [and ironically more respected and higher priced ] site built neighborhoods nearby, the development I live in is an oasis. We own our own lots, the houses are clean and honest looking, a great place to live.

    Thanks for the article.