What do you want your home to look like?
There are many floorplans and options to choose from today. Manufactured homes are available in a variety of floorplans that include spacious, open living rooms, dining rooms, fully equipped kitchens, one or more bedrooms, family rooms, dens and utility rooms. Of course the size of the home will be important. Singlewide, doublewide and triplewide models give you a large choice in choosing the size you will need. Some factories offer 2-story models as well. Color schemes and decor choices give manufactured and modular homes a customized look as well as exterior features such as gabled fronts, many styles of windows and the color and type of siding. Porches, decks and shingled roofs are also options you can consider.
It is sometimes hard to visualize what a home looks like from a floorplan but with a little imagination you can get a good idea.
All floorplans have to be approved by HUD which is time consuming and expensive for the manufacturer. It would be very rude to ask if a manufacturer would build a home from a floorplan you obtained from their competitor. That would be like asking Chevy to build a Ford - or vice versa.
Most homes are supplied with a combination of electrical and gas (or oil) appliances. The furnace usually burns oil or gas. The cooking range and water heater may use either gas or electricity. The refrigerator and dishwasher are electric.
Some modern manufactured home communities have central systems for distributing heating oil or gas to individual homes. The type of gas appliances in the home must be matched to the type of gas available in the community where you move. Your manufactured home dealer will know what to order when you tell him where you plan to place the home and what is available.
Manufactured homes are also available with all electric features, which can be great in areas where electric rates are low. Very often the choice of a gas, oil combination, or all electric, depends on the availability, and relative costs of these services.
Manufactured homes today have improved in energy efficiency due to government controls and the desire of the industry to meet the needs and wants of the buyer. Doublepane windows are usually standard. Insulation has standard minimums depending on what part of the country you live in. The National Manufactured Home Construction and Safety Standards require separate energy efficiency levels for the three different temperature zones of the United States. It is a good idea to buy as much insulation as you can afford. Some insulation packages can help you qualify for a break on your utility bills from the utility company.
Other additional energy saving features are high-efficiency water heaters, furnaces, refrigerators, and air conditioners. You especially should note the "heating certificate," which specifies the temperature zone for which the home is designed, and the "comfort cooling certificate," which specifies the appropriate central air conditioning system for the home. Both certificates are located on the inside of the home. You shouldn't place your home in a climate zone other than the one for which it was designed.
Even if your home and some of its appliances do not have a written warranty, you, as the buyer have implied warranties under state laws which require a home, and its appliances to work properly.
Some states have special laws to protect manufactured homes owners. Also, the Federal Trade Commission has authority to issue additional requirements under the federal warranty law. Homeowners should keep up-to-date on the rights afforded under this law.
Besides the warranties, every buyer should be issued a manual with the purchase of a new manufactured home.
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