Manufactured Housing Definitions

Manufactured Housing Industry & Mobile Home Definitions

The manufactured housing definitions of the Manufactured Housing Industry has many terms, many of which people use interchangeably and incorrectly. This is a quick reference for some of the more common terms used in the Manufactured Housing Industry (also known as “MH”). In general all dwellings that fall under the general term of manufactured housing, or “factory-built” homes, are built in a controlled environment of a manufacturing plant and are transported in one or more sections on a permanent or temporary site, either in a community on leased land, or private real-estate.

MANUFACTURED HOME (HUD code; Also used: Manufactured Home, Trailer):
A HUD Code Manufactured home is built on a permanent I-Beam chassis with removable wheels, axles and tongue. After initial and final inspections at the factory, no additional inspections need to be made to the home itself, only the foundation and construction need final inspection for occupancy. They come in sizes starting at 500 sq. ft up to over 2500 sq ft., in single or multiple sections. HUD code dwellings are simply manufactured homes built to the Manufactured Home Construction and Safety Standards. HUD code is a national “performance” code that preempts all local, county and state codes set by the “Housing and Urban Development” division.

MOBILE HOME (Predates HUD Code; Also used: Trailer):
A mobile home is a factory-built home that is 1) built before June 15, 1976, and 2) not built to a uniform construction code. This makes for the most confusing term of the industry, since most of the industry uses “mobile home” and “manufactured home” interchangeably.

PARK MODEL (ANSI code; Also used: Park Model Cabin, Park Model Cottage, Park Model RV)
Park Models, or Recreational Park Trailers are less than 400-square foot cabins or cottages with peaked roofs that sit on a permanent chassis, with removable wheels, axles and tongue. Park Models are normally semi-permanently placed on rented, leased or purchased sites in campgrounds or RV resorts, and used as weekend retreats or vacation cottages. They can also be a great and affordable option for land/home development on private property and used as a part-time residence. Typically upscale in appearance, park models are available in many styles, from cedar cabins more suburban style homes with vinyl siding, solid frame construction, residential cabinets and full size appliances as well as many options. Park Model manufacturers build to the “ANSI 119.5″ building code, which is administered and enforced by the Recreational Park Trailer Industry Association (RPTIA). The code requires that park models meet or exceed more than 500 building and safety standards.

MODULAR HOME (IBC Code; Also used: Mod’s, Modular’s)
A modular home is any home factory-built to a local state code. In some cases, a state may have adopted one of the uniform construction codes (i.e. UBC, IRC, etc.). Modular homes will not have the red Certification Label, but will have a label attached to the home stating the code it was built to. The appropriate State Modular Code Agency will be able to assist you in locating the modular label. A modular home can be built as an “on-frame” or “off-frame” modular. On-frame will be built on a permanent chassis, whereas, the off-frame modular will be built with removal of the chassis frame in mind. An off-frame modular will usually require additional cranes to assist with home placement. Modular homes are, more often than not, attached to private land.

A modular home can take almost any shape and size, and is limited by the imagination. Modular Cabins and Homes are virtually indistinguishable from their site-built counterparts. The International Building Code (IBC) is a model building code developed by the International Code Council (ICC). The purpose of the IBC is to set standards to protect public health, safety and general welfare as they relate to the construction of buildings. Before the creation of the International Building Code there were several different building codes used, depending on where one decided to construct a building. The IBC was developed to consolidate existing building codes into one uniform code that could be used nationally and internationally to construct buildings.




Park set vs. Permanent Set

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