Manufactured Homes - Mobile Homes or Trailers

Patricia Skinner  |  4/21/2007 4:29:07 PM

Manufactured homes are the homes we have traditionally referred to as mobile homes or trailers. While site-built and modular homes are built to comply with the state and local codes of the areas in which they are built or installed, traditional manufactured homes are built under a national code administered by HUD and are often referred to as "HUD-Code homes" or "HUD homes".  (Note: The term "HUD home" is also used to refer to residential property that has been acquired by HUD as a result of a foreclosure action on an FHA-insured mortgage and is offered for sale to recover the loss on the foreclosure claim.)

The HUD Code is administered by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development using independent third party inspection agencies for enforcement. It is the federal counterpart to nationally recognized private sector model building codes such as the International Residential Code (IRC), which is the model adopted by the Louisiana Legislature in 2005. The HUD Code is the only code that is mandated to be nationally recognized, and as such it has preemptive status with respect to traditional factory-built homes.

HUD s Office of Policy Development and Research produced a Manufactured Home Installation Training Manual that lays out the issues that need to be considered when installing a HUD-Code home. While it's intended audience is installers, retailers, and inspectors of HUD-Code homes, it would be a useful tool for the property owner who may be considering purchasing one of these homes.

HUD's manual is designed to complement manufacturer installation instructions and state regulatory documents. It discusses relevant issues objectively, emphasizing the reasons for recommending specific procedures. Installation of both new and used homes is covered, and the manual includes best practice tips not only on installation but also for moving nimbly through the permits and approvals process. The guide explains, for example, why a site analysis is important, and how to the owner can take advantage of site opportunities. A checklist at the end of the manual summarizes the main points of site preparation, foundations, installation, and additional resources.

More information about these homes in provided in the Traditional Homes section of the Louisiana Manufactured Housing Association Web site.

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