A model modular home atop home blueprints

Modular homes are an excellent option for people who want to enjoy homeownership benefits without all of the hassles of traditional construction. But how long do they last and, more importantly, how well are they built?

This article will explore how long modular homes last by looking at the build quality and going over ways to ensure your house lasts as long as possible. We’ll also go over the main differences between a modular home and a manufactured home.

Let’s take a closer look.

How Long Do Modular Homes Last?

Most modular homes will last 30-100 years. However, this depends on the materials used and how well they are maintained. They’re built to the same code as site-built homes, but most manufacturers often use higher standards, as modular must withstand the rigors of transportation.

Build Quality’s Impact on Modular Home Longevity

The build quality of your modular home will have a significant impact on how long it lasts. It determines how well your house can withstand the elements and everyday wear and tear.

Prefabricated, modular homes are built in a controlled environment, which means builders take their time to do a good job. The houses are also built to higher standards than traditional homes, further increasing their longevity.

A modular home is assembled in a factory

For example, most modular builders use thick walls and high-quality materials to construct their products, resulting in a well-insulated and sturdy home that can withstand the elements. As a result, you also get reduced energy bills and a smaller carbon footprint.

In addition to using high-quality materials, the builders of modular homes use special techniques to make sure the homes can withstand transportation and installation. For example, they use steel I-beams to reinforce them against high winds.

A good roof can also be the difference between a long-lasting modular home and one that needs to be replaced regularly. That’s because a well-made roof can withstand the elements.

However, a building is only as strong as the foundation it’s built on. That’s why it’s essential to make sure that your home is placed on a level surface. If the house isn’t level, it can settle over time and cause problems with the structure.

How To Increase Your Modular Home’s Longevity

You can do a few things to make sure your modular home lasts as long as possible. 

First, it’s crucial to regularly inspect your home to help identify any problems early and fix them before they become significant issues.

It’s also a good idea to keep up with its maintenance, including things like cleaning the gutters and trimming the trees. By doing this, you can avoid problems like water damage and rot.

You also want to be proactive about repairs. If you notice a problem with your home, it’s best to get it fixed. Doing so will help prevent further damage and keep your home in good condition for years to come.

However, your prefab home will eventually need to be replaced. And when that time comes, you can have your home dismantled and recycled so that it doesn’t end up in a landfill.

Examples of Modular Home Builders

Now that we’ve looked at how long modular homes last, let’s look at some of the best prefabricated home builders.

One company that specializes in modular housing is Method Homes. It uses high-quality materials and experienced builders to construct its homes. And most of its products come with a ten-year warranty.

We know someone who owns a Method Homes house (simpatico series), and she loves it. She says it’s well-built and efficient, and she’s had few problems with it in the four years that she’s lived there.

Interior view of a Method Homes modular green home
Courtesy of Method Homes

She particularly likes that the home is made of sustainable materials and doesn’t have a lot of wasted space. So you get all the features and amenities you need without any unnecessary frills.

House Port is another great prefab home company. Its homes are designed to be long-lasting and low-maintenance. The company also uses a lot of recycled materials in its construction.

We have been in forums with lots of House Port owners, and they all seem to be happy with their purchases. They say the homes are well-made and stylish, and they like that the company focuses on being environmentally friendly.

Exterior view of a House Port sustainable home
Courtesy of House Port

While there are many great modular home companies, these are two of our favorites. They offer a great combination of quality, style, and sustainability.

What To Do if Your Modular Home Needs Repairs?

If you find your modular home in need of repairs, there are a few things you can do. While some things are easy to fix yourself with a quick Google search (such as a leaky faucet), others require more due diligence, especially if you want the job done right.

If your house needs repairs, you can fix them yourself or contact the company that constructed your home. It will be able to provide you with replacement parts or help you find a local contractor who can do the repairs.

However, if you cannot get the repairs done through the company, you can always hire a local contractor. Remember, it’s best to get multiple estimates and check references before hiring anyone.

Are Modular Homes More Cost-Effective?

One of the main reasons people choose modular homes is because they believe they’re cheaper than traditional houses. But is this true?

Yes, modular homes are more cost-effective. You can expect to pay about 10-20% less for a prefab home, not including the money you’ll save on heating and cooling costs. In addition, modular homes are much more energy-efficient than traditional ones, so you can expect lower utility bills.

However, this also depends on the size and style of the home, materials used, and the final location.

Insurance costs are another area where modular homes tend to be cheaper. Because they’re so well-built, insurers see them as less risky. And that means you’ll pay less for your insurance premiums.

When you factor in all the savings, it’s easy to see why the future of housing may be prefabricated construction.

Modular Homes vs. Manufactured Homes

Modular homes and manufactured homes are often confused with one another. But there are some critical differences between the two.

Manufactured homes are built to HUD, while modular homes follow the building code of the area they’ll be located.

If you are not familiar with the HUD code, you can consider it the national building code for manufactured homes. These are the guidelines that manufactured home builders have to meet to create a habitable house.

Manufactured homes are also built on a chassis, which means they can be moved after they’re made, while modular homes are assembled on a foundation and are not meant to be moved. This affects the house’s resale value, as manufactured homes are not considered permanent.

A module of a modular home is lowered onto the build site by a crane

Modular homes are built with higher quality materials than manufactured homes since they must meet the exact building code requirements of traditional stick-built homes.

So, prefabs are a better investment than manufactured homes when it comes down to it. They’re built with higher quality materials, they follow the local building code, and they can appreciate value over time—especially true if you can find the right location.

Are Modular Homes Mortgageable?

One of the main questions many people have before purchasing a modular home is if they’re mortgageable. Although modular homes are cheaper, they’re typically not cheap enough to bypass needing a loan.

So, are they mortgageable?

Modular homes are mortgageable. Most banks and lenders will treat a modular loan like one for a traditional home. However, some lenders may require a higher down payment because they’re often seen as a higher-risk investment.

However, don’t let that deter you from looking into modular construction. There are plenty of lenders willing to give you a loan for a modular house. You just need to do your research and find the right one.

You also want to avoid the lender you find on the prefab home lot. Many of these lenders are known for their high-interest rates and shady practices.

It’s always best to get a loan from a reputable bank or lender. You will have a better experience and save yourself a lot of money in the long run.

The Bottom Line

Modular homes are an excellent option for a cheaper and more energy-efficient alternative to traditional homes. Depending on how well maintained they are, they can last 30 to 100 years.

They’re also an excellent investment, as they can appreciate over time. So, if you’re thinking about making the switch to a modular home, there’s no reason not to.

The only time you could go wrong is when choosing a lender and a location. If you’re not careful, you can end up with a high-interest loan and a home that’s not in the ideal location.

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