Mobile, Modular and Manufactured Homes
Posted by Jan Chilton - Real Estate Marketing and SEO on 02/15/2010 12:21 PM
Have you ever wondered or been asked by a buyer
exactly what the difference is between a "modular"
home and a "mobile" home? You may also hear the
terms "manufactured home" or "pre-fab home".
These terms seem to be catch-all phrases to
encompass anything that is not a "stick-built" house,
which is the builder's lingo for a home that is built
from scratch on a piece of property, and not in a
So what exactly is the difference? After researching
the different types of alternative-built homes, I've
discovered the answer. And, my findings might
In my quest to understand these different housing
types, I contacted Robert Fanelli, the President of
Riverview Homes, Inc. in Vandergrift, Pennsylvania.
With forty years of experience in selling both types of
homes, Robert provided me with insight into the alternative housing business and explained that it basically boils down to
"Over our 40-year history, Riverview Homes has sold mobile homes, manufactured homes, modular homes, two stories,
sectional homes, single-wides, trailers, double trailers, triple-wides, double-high, etc.", he begins. "In the end what we
have really sold is either a home built to the HUD (Department of Housing and Urban Development) building code or to a
State building code. In Pennsylvania, we build single family homes to the IRC (International Residential Code). In
Pennsylvania, modular homes are built to the IRC and manufactured homes or mobile homes are built to the HUD code."
Wikipedia defines a similar difference. It says that typically a
modular home is built to local state or council code, so it can
actually have a different construction standard depending on
the state in which it will be placed. Modular homes built for
final placement in a hurricane-prone area can have additional
bracing built in to make it more safe. Surprisingly, it