Most of us know about the three different sizes of manufactured homes: single wides, double wides, and triple wides, but did you know about the 3 levels of manufactured homes?
The 3 Levels of Manufactured Homes
In addition to the three sizes of manufactured homes, there are three levels of quality and price ranges in the manufactured housing world. They are the low-end models, the mid-level models, and the high-end luxury models.
The different levels of quality or price may not be obvious from a visual standpoint. Many of the same amenities can be found in all 3 levels of manufactured homes. It’s the difference in construction and material quality that make up the biggest differences between the 3 levels of manufactured homes.
The price of a manufactured home isn’t just based on the size; a small home with top notch construction and quality materials may cost more than a large home with average materials and construction.
With manufactured homes, you absolutely get what you pay for but that’s the beauty of it all.
Many of us don’t need or want porcelain farm sinks or real wood cabinetry. We just need a nice home that keeps our family safe and at a price we can actually afford.
Level 1: The Most Affordable Manufactured Home Models
If you drive by a manufactured home dealership in the South you will likely see signs advertising single wides for $19,995 and double wides for $39,995. These are your most affordable models. They are really nice homes but there is a reason they are so affordable.
These models use budget materials and may have staples and glue in lieu of nails. The flooring will be thinner and the cabinets made with cheaper material. The
A $19,995 single wide won’t have exterior sheathing or high-end windows. The roof pitch will be lower, the doors and the studs smaller.
There is nothing wrong with the most affordable models. You simply get what you pay for.
The most affordable models are great starting points to see which layout or design you want. From there, you can add the exact features and amenities that you want.
Here’s an example of the cabinet options the Fleetwood offered buyers in 2015:
Clayton’s most affordable home for 2017 appears to be the 2017 Clayton Tru model. One dealer site’s show the starting price for this model at $22,999. The total price for a Clayton Tru home, turnkey, would likely be 40-45k. Here’s the floorplan:
You get what you pay for and that’s one of the best things about manufactured homes!
Mid-level manufactured homes are the most popular. These homes will have better structural elements. The roof may have a higher pitch or made with better-grade shingles. The studs will be bigger, the windows will be more energy efficient, and the cabinets may be better made.
These are the homes that you often see in those large lot manufactured home communities where all the homes have attached garages and face the road. They aren’t the cheapest but there is room to play so that home buyers can get exactly what they want.
A good example of a mid-level single wide by Clayton Homes is the Now series. It would probably end up costing around 62k turnkey. They feature MDF cabinets and trim (notice the trim is painted white instead of brown in this home). Note the fake brick backsplash in kitchen and dining.
High-End Manufactured Home Models
If you live in the Northern US, you will probably see more high-end manufactured home models. The rough winters call for a stronger construction.
High end manufactured homes are usually not seen on most dealership lots. They can be a real production to install. It’s simply not feasible to put one together on a dealership’s lot. Though I understand things are done a bit differently in the Western states.
The high-end home will have the top of the line materials, the best options in cabinetry, faucets, carpeting, and just about anything else, you can think of.
If you want the best, the luxury model is perfect. I highly recommend these homes if you are installing the home onto your own private property and plan for this to be your permanent home. I say this because the likelihood of the home gaining equity is much better when the homes are top of the line and attached to private land.
The 2017 Norris CEO is a good example of a high-end model single wide manufactured home but, oddly, this model did not offer a true ‘house’ type door or a storm door on the rear. These are simple upgrades that really make a manufactured home look more site-built.
All 3 levels of manufactured homes have some great advantages. They are extremely environmentally friendly and that’s become an important aspect of home building.
Manufactured homes allow you to get exactly what you want on a schedule that no site built home builder can match. Most of all, they are affordable enough to allow people like me to actually own our own homes and I think that’s pretty cool.
I hope you have enjoyed learning more about 3 levels of manufactured homes. Keep in mind that there is absolutely nothing wrong with the most affordable models. They are perfect homes for millions of people. They simply are made with more modern technologies that allow for faster and less expensive production.
Thanks for reading Mobile Home Living!
A huge thank you to Steve Lancaster, our favorite manufactured home expert! Visit him on his Facebook group page here.