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Prefab Modular

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A prefab modular house is not a mobile home, nor are they considered manufactured housing. Manufactured housing is typically a type of housing that refers to mobile or semi-mobile housing, not permanently affixed housing. A prefab modular house is a house that is constructed up to 90% off site and then permanently attached to and assembled on a standard foundation.

A prefab modular house is constructed in a factory environment in modular sections. A house with three bedrooms, one to two baths, kitchen and living area may be constructed in only two modular sections, each with several pieces to be assembled upon arrival at the building site. Each section of a prefab modular house is complete with windows, siding, and doors and once arrived at the building site, can be completely assembled in as little as two days. The electrical wiring and plumbing is ready to be tied into when it arrives as well.

The misconception that a prefab modular house is not the same quality as a stick-built, or site-built, house is being shattered. Many new homebuyers today are opting for a prefab modular house because the construction process is more controlled, saving them time, headaches, and often money. Upon completion, it can be difficult to tell the difference between a prefab modular house and a traditional stick-built house.

One small issue that might concern prospective homebuyers is the size of the walls in a prefab modular house. They are designed to be thicker than standard walls, to withstand the lift from truck to lot by crane. This means that there is some limitation placed on the customization of floor plan design. Prefab panelized houses do not have these same restrictions, but generally, a prefab modular house is more cost efficient and thus, most home buyers can find a floor plan that satisfies them. Many buyers turn to prefab modular housing for a seasonal or vacation home because the costs are less than conventional building in many situations.

Financing for a prefab modular house can be obtained just like a conventional home with rates based on credit worthiness and terms up to 30 years. Some lenders even specialize exclusively in funding prefab housing purchases. Many times, a dealer can help arrange financing, as they and their manufacturers have established relationships with specific lenders, but you can always choose to use your own bank or mortgage company.

The cost of a prefab modular house is based on the number of square feet and any customization. The price per square foot is comparable to a larger, but similar market in the general area of the build. Because you will pay for trucking expenses and delivery costs, you are better off to compare dealers close to your building site. If you do not already own a lot, but would like to finance the lot with the house, many lenders will factor in that and all other expenses into the loan.

By comparing the costs and your involvement in the building process between conventional and prefabricated construction, you will be able to intelligently choose which option is best for you. If you have your heart set on a very specific design and floor plan, check with a dealer or a manufacturer’s own architect to see if your specifications can be met with a prefab modular house. If not, you may have to opt for conventional building, but it pays to compare before you agree to begin construction.

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