Are you here because you are looking for positive and convincing reasons why people buy mobile homes? You are in the right place so continue reading!
Featured Medium author Jason Michaels said he used to own eight homes and not making any money until he invested in a mobile home.
If you are looking to buy a mobile home and are still not 100% certain about your decision, this article will help you make the right choice.
“My wife and I have owned eight homes, but none were as financially beneficial as the mobile home I bought years before we were married. I paid $19,500 and sold it a dozen years later for $45,000. I also collected more than $50,000 renting out rooms in my mobile while I lived in it.”, recounted Mr. Michaels.
Living in a mobile home may sound strange to some people who haven’t experienced doing it, but for many who are enjoying their lives to the fullest, there are many reasons to be proud of being a mobile home owner. Although affordability and efficiency are some of the major reasons why people buy mobile homes, there are other good reasons many people fail to see.
You may never have thought of buying a mobile home before but as we enter another year, mobile homes could be a profitable investment. Real estate investors were jumping into buying single-family homes last year in 2022, but this year in 2023, you can get a step ahead of them with the lower-cost mobile home units in high demand.
Mobile home parks and manufactured homes are not new and neither a thing of the past. Yes, there are some negative stereotypes mostly from people who lack knowledge about these homes, but the fact that 6.4% of the US population lives in mobile homes, these homes are surely worth the attention.
Negative Stereotypes About Mobile Homes
There are a few negative stereotypes about mobile homes but there are also a number of great reasons why people are buying them instead of single-family site-built homes.
One of the myths about mobile homes is that they are built for poor people and use substandard construction materials.
“Not everyone who lives in a trailer park is poor,” says Charles Becker, a professor of economics at Duke University, and one of a handful of academics nationwide who has extensively studied the subject.
“And there are parts of the country, like Michigan, where living in a mobile home community doesn’t have the stigma it does in the south. You also have retirement communities in Florida where people aren’t poor at all,” he added.
According to the US Census. The number of occupants is not recorded but it’s estimated to total about 20 million people using mobile homes as their housing.
According to the Manufactured Housing Institute, about 57% of the heads of mobile home households are in full employment and another 23% are retired.
There are other negative stereotypes that include shoddy, irrelevant to urban housing needs, parks are exploitative, and other ridiculous claims. Let’s leave these things to experts as we are here not to debunk these false claims but to explain why people keep buying mobile homes despite these claims.
Why Do People Buy Mobile Homes
Living in a mobile home has advantages and disadvantages but because of the rising cost of traditional real estate, mobile homes are becoming popular not just because of price but because of other reasons you may not hear of before.
- Affordability – Mobile homes are more affordable than traditional site-built homes.
Since 23% of mobile homeowners are retired, let’s take a look at their income.
According to the Social Security Administration, the maximum Social Security benefit you can receive each month in 2021 is $3,148 ($37,776/annum) for those at full retirement age. The average Social Security income per month in 2021 is $1,543 ($18,516/annum) ( after being adjusted for the cost of living at 1.3 percent.
According to some experts, the country’s average mobile home lot rent is $380 per month. However, the lot rent rate can vary depending on several factors and could start from as low as $100 and go as high as $2,000. Larger organizations usually present standardized lot rents compared to small parks.
Looking at the above data, even a senior who is receiving the lowest monthly social security pension of $1,543 can still afford to pay the highest lot rent of $900.
This is not the case, however, when renting a traditional site-built home or apartment.
The average American renter pays $1,326 a month in 2021. For those looking to move, prices are even higher in 2022. The average asking rent is now $1,900, with single-family houses averaging $2,018 a month, while a typical apartment costs $1,659.
So how about the other 57% full-time employees who prefer to live in mobile homes? Can they afford to rent traditional real estate homes and apartments?
While the average American income depends heavily on the industry, field, and experience, according to Zippia, the median income in the U.S. as of 2022 is $44,225.
Although a full-time American employee can afford to pay the average rent, the disparity between renting traditional stick-built real estate and buying a mobile home and renting a lot is too big to ignore.
For Michael Breeden, 27, picking a mobile home rather than a fixed home a year ago was all about freedom. “I know I could have got a foreclosed house if I wanted to but we can move this to where we want.”
It’s been a largely happy 12 months in the 80ft home for his 23-year-old girlfriend Samantha, their 17-month-old baby Kelli Lynn and Breeden’s mother, Mary McGee.
Breeden, who works at a printing plant nearby, pays the park owner $325 a month for lot rental, rubbish collection, and water supply. There’s also $150 to pay monthly for electricity, $60 for property tax, and $220 to Samantha’s parents who lent them the $16,000 to buy the home.
Since most mobile homes are set up on leased land and are considered motor vehicles, the lack of property taxes is another big thing that contributes to their affordability. Because most manufactured homes are paid in cash, owners enjoy living without paying a mortgage.
- Mobile – Mobile homes can be moved and transported to any mobile home park you want
Mobile homes are called mobile homes for a reason. The name speaks for itself. Although mobile homes are not usually transported to another location once they are set up, they are easier to move than a site-built home when needed.
So, for example, if the mobile home owner can’t afford to pay the lot rent anymore but has no plan to sell their mobile home, they have the option to relocate to another mobile home park where the lot rent is lower.
There are other reasons why a mobile home is relocated and not just the increasing lot rent. Some owners want to have a new and different environment while living in the same house where they created memories.
Moving closer to a family is another reason especially when the owner is getting older and needs close family care, something that is hard to do if you own a traditional stick-built home.
- Great Choice for First-Time Homeowners – Mobile homes are perfect for couples who are just starting to build their own families.
Many new couples struggle not only with their finances but also with their choice of living and mobile homes can solve this problem. Mobile homes come with many benefits such as easy customization. If you are a new home buyer and want to save every dollar while living in comfort, a mobile home is a perfect choice instead of renting a stick-built apartment.
There are stories of couples who started living in mobile homes but years later, they still do while saving a lot of money on mortgage and property taxes. After all, life savings is more important for them than buying a new single-family home.
- Mobile Homes are High-Quality – Mobile homes are built and installed according to strict standards.
Contrary to what some people believe that mobile homes are shoddy, they are built according to strict Federal and State housing standards and regulations, just as stick-built homes. Today’s manufactured homes are also designed aesthetically pleasing that can compete with modern real estate designs. Someone who is not knowledgeable about mobile homes may often mistake mobile homes for site-built homes.
Mobile home buyers can choose among different floor plan designs from single rooms to luxurious spaces. And even though a mobile home is built with a basic floor plan, customization is easier than stick-built houses.
- Buying a Mobile Home is Better than Renting – You may be paying a monthly lot rent but you are not losing home ownership!
Assuming you don’t have $15,000 cash to buy a mobile home, you can always apply for financing. Remember Dave Ramsay the finance personality? He mentioned in one of his podcasts that his mortgage was $257 per month. Add his mobile home tax, insurance, maintenance, and lot rent, he was paying less than $900 a month while owning a house. Compare that to someone who rents an apartment with the same amount. Both spend the same amount but Ramsay is owning a house.
“Before, when you were paying out X number of dollars in rent, that’s all you were losing. Now you’re paying out X number of dollars in rent and you’re losing money every day on the ownership of the thing, so you’ve done double dumb now.” He said.
- Mobile Homes Can Be Financed – Yes, you can get financing for a mobile home!
Contrary to what some people believe that mobile homes can’t get financing, HUD programs banks will loan up to $69,678 on a mobile home on a rented lot, and up to $92,904 on a mobile home attached to a lot. And according to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, “More than 2,000 institutions reported originating one or more manufactured housing purchase loans in 2012” (more recent statistics are not available).
Although mobile home financing options are limited compared to traditional real estate homes, still, there are several ways to finance your mobile home. Visit our blog article “Are You Able To Get Financing When Buying A Sarasota Mobile Home?” to learn more.
- Most Mobile Homes Have Nice Neighborhoods – Mobile home parks are peaceful!
Although many mobile home parks are designed for 55+ people, especially in Florida, there are thousands of mobile home parks for all ages that cater to young people. Most mobile home parks are strictly managed by park owners and managers especially those mobile homes on leased land.
One of the reasons why many mobile home parks have better and more peaceful neighborhoods than traditional real estate neighborhoods is that it is easier to oust mobile homeowners who do not follow the park policy.
- Mobile Homes are Energy Efficient and Environmental Friendly
The younger generation is more environmentally conscious than the older generation so if you are a Millennial who is looking to purchase your first home, a mobile home is a great option.
Modern mobile homes are built with eco-friendly materials that reduce waste to save money. Many modern manufactured homes are also equipped with solar panels and smart technology reducing carbon footprints and the use of centralized electricity.
“There is no perfect home” and this saying is applicable to both mobile homes and traditional stick-built homes. Although mobile homes have their own disadvantages, their strengths outweigh their weaknesses, especially on the financial side.
The above reasons are just some of the things that prompt people to buy mobile homes. There are other reasons based on individual needs and preferences. If you are planning to buy a mobile home, it is important to know your own personal needs and financial considerations.
We, at The Mobile Home Dealer, are always open to hearing your questions and helping you with all your mobile home needs. Feel free to Contact Us!