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The Ultimate Guide for First-Time Mobile Home Buyers: Everything You Need to Know

In recent years, mobile homes have emerged as an impressively affordable housing option, particularly appealing to first-time home buyers. Amidst soaring traditional home prices, more individuals are turning their gazes toward these practical dwellings that promise not just affordability but also a slew comprising flexibility and modern amenities.

The surge in popularity is no fluke; mobile homes offer a unique blend of cost-effectiveness and convenience, challenging the conventional notions of homeownership. Whether your priority lies in financial prudence, the desire for a smaller carbon footprint, or simply the ability to move your abode if necessary, these factory-built homes present solutions that resonate with diverse buyer preferences.

Gone are the days when mobile homes were synonymous with compromised living; modern units now provide similar, if not superior, comfort to their site-built counterparts. With a mindful approach, even a first-time mobile home buyer can embark on this residential journey equipped with the correct information to make a sound investment. This guide is tailored to navigate through the intricacies of purchasing your first mobile home and establishing a space that echoes ‘home sweet home’.

Understanding the Mobile Homes

Before we delve deeper into the process of buying a mobile home, let’s establish a solid foundation by understanding what mobile homes are and the various types available.

What is a mobile home?

mobile home is a prefabricated structure built in a factory and transported to a site for use as a permanent living space. This type of factory-built home has evolved drastically since its advent in the early 20th century. Originally known as trailer homes designed for holiday accommodation, today they stand as sophisticated dwellings that adhere to federal manufacturing and safety standards.

The terminology can be slightly perplexing—often interchangeably used with terms like ‘manufactured home’ or ‘modular home’. The key distinction lies in their regulatory standards and construction methods. A manufactured home aligns with the federal Housing and Urban Development (HUD) code, while modular homes conform to local state building codes akin to traditional site-built homes.

Types of mobile homes

Depending on their size and layout, mobile homes come in various forms:

  • Single-wide: Typically measures 18 feet or less in width and 90 feet or less in length. It’s a straight, long floor plan and is convenient for smaller spaces or budgets.
  • Double-wide: Consists of two sections joined together to form a larger unit, usually around 20 feet wide or more. It offers more living space than single-wides and can feel very much like a traditional single-family home inside.
  • Triple-wide: Even broader and roomier, these units include three joined sections and provide substantial space comparable to sizable conventional properties.

Modern features and amenities in mobile homes

The dawn of contemporary mobile homes has brought forth an array of features and amenities that rival or exceed those found in traditional housing. From high-end finishes like granite countertops and hardwood flooring to energy-efficient appliances and smart home technology, the array is boundless. Moreover, their design flexibility allows for personalization to reflect your taste and lifestyle seamlessly.

In conclusion, comprehending what encompasses a mobile home sets the foundation for an educated purchase journey. As we unpack further into the process of becoming a first-time mobile home buyer, bear in mind that each step can be approached with confidence, backed by the appropriate knowledge and resources.

Benefits of Buying a Mobile Home

For a first-time home buyer, entering the housing market can be daunting, especially when considering the substantial investment required for a traditional home. Turning to mobile homes presents several benefits that can simplify the path to homeownership:

Affordability compared to traditional homes

By far, the most compelling advantage is the lower cost. Mobile homes are generally less expensive per square foot than their site-built homes counterparts. The manufactured nature of these homes allows for bulk purchasing and reduced labor costs, translating into significant savings for the buyer.

Flexibility in location

Mobile homes offer unprecedented flexibility in location. You can choose to reside in a mobile home park with a community feel and amenities, or alternatively, secure a plot of private land where you determine your surroundings.

Lower maintenance costs

Often, the scale and modern design of mobile homes mean less maintenance work and cost. From the outset, everything is new, reducing the need for immediate fixes or upgrades that older traditional homes may require.

Faster move-in time

The factory construction process of mobile homes substantially shortens build time. Whereas a site-built home may take months or even more than a year to complete, a mobile home could be ready within weeks.

Energy efficiency options

Many manufacturers now offer energy-efficient appliances and designs, such as improved insulation and windows, contributing to long-term savings on utility bills and reducing the carbon footprint.

Steps to Buying Your First Mobile Home

Embarking on the journey as a first-time mobile home buyer requires navigation through several steps to ensure a smart purchase. Here is a structured guide:

Determine your budget

Consider both upfront costs and recurring expenses like lot rent in mobile home parks, utilities, and insurance. Crafting a comprehensive budget will lead to more informed decisions about what you can afford.

Choose between new or used mobile homes

Weigh the benefits of a brand-new manufactured home (with the latest features and warranties) against the cost savings that might come from purchasing a used mobile home (subject to availability of features and potential need for updates or repairs).

Decide on location

Will you settle in an established mobile home park or on private land? Both have their merits. Mobile home parks sometimes include amenities like community centers, pools, and play areas but generally come with lot rent fees. Private land offers more freedom but requires considerations such as zoning laws, property taxes, and installing utilities.

Research and compare manufacturers

Investigate mobile home manufacturers to ensure their reputations align with your expectations regarding quality and service. Compare models, upgrades, warranties, and prices.

Customize your home

Many manufacturers provide options to tweak floor plans to suit your lifestyle or select particular design elements that resonate with you – from fixtures and fittings to exterior designs.

Arrange financing

Understanding the different types of loans available for mobile homes is critical. These will differ from those available for traditional site-built properties, particularly if you are not owning the land underneath.

Inspect the home

Never underestimate the importance of a comprehensive professional inspection. This step is crucial in identifying any issues that need addressing before finalizing your purchase.

Closing the deal and moving in

Navigate through final paperwork cautiously, and ensure that everything agreed upon is correctly captured. Once everything is signed off, it’s time to move into your new abode!

By following these steps thoughtfully and with due diligence, transitioning into your first mobile home can be smooth sailing. Remember that each phase offers an opportunity for learning and decision-making poised to shepherd you comfortably into the world of mobile homeownership.

Financing Options for First-Time Mobile Home Buyers

Navigating the financial aspects and securing a mobile home loan can be among the most challenging parts of buying a mobile home. However, understanding the diverse financing options can make this process less intimidating. Here’s a rundown of loans you might explore as a first-time mobile home buyer:

Traditional mortgages

Although less common for mobile homes, particularly if they’re not affixed to land, some lenders do offer conventional loans for manufactured homes that meet specific criteria.

FHA loans

The Federal Housing Administration offers Title I and Title II loans that accommodate lower-income buyers and those with less-than-sterling credit. Keep in mind that these loans come with certain restrictions and requirements, like the need for the mobile home to be your primary residence.

VA loans for veterans

Veterans and active service members may tap into the benefits of VA loans that potentially offer favorable terms, including no down payment and limited closing costs.

Chattel loans

Chattel loans are often used when the home is situated on leased land, like in a mobile home park. The mobile home itself is used as collateral, which means these loans might carry higher interest rates.

Personal loans

Under some circumstances, a personal loan could be used to finance a mobile home purchase, especially if the amount needed is relatively small and you have good credit.

Manufacturer financing

Some mobile home manufacturers may provide in-house financing options, often simplifying the process since they’re familiar with the product’s ins and outs.

Tips for improving your chances of loan approval

  • Boost your credit score: Check your credit reports and rectify any errors.
  • Plan for a sizeable down payment: The larger your down payment, the better your loan terms could be.
  • Gather documentation: Have your financial documents ready to streamline the approval process.
  • Shop around: Don’t settle on the first financing offer; compare terms from multiple lenders to find the best deal.

With the financial aspects under wraps, it’s crucial to address legalities and regulations surrounding mobile home ownership.

HUD code requirements

The Department of Housing and Urban Development prescribes national standards for the design, construction, and installation of manufactured homes known as the HUD Code. This ensures that all mobile homes are safe and meet basic quality standards.

State-specific regulations

Each state may have its own set of rules for mobile home installation, titling, and taxes. Familiarize yourself with these regulations to avoid setbacks.

Zoning laws and restrictions

Check local zoning requirements to confirm where you can legally place your mobile home. These laws can influence everything from minimum size requirements to whether you can install a manufactured home on private property.

Titling and taxes

Similar to vehicles, mobile homes have titles that must be transferred upon sale. Moreover, property taxes can apply differently to mobile homes depending on whether they’re deemed real or personal property.

Both financing options and legal considerations are integral to making a confident purchase as a first-time mobile home buyer. By understanding what financial pathways are accessible and complying with pertinent regulations, you’re positioning yourself for success in joining the community of satisfied mobile homeowners. It’s all about doing thorough research and perhaps seeking advice from experts who understand the unique nuances of financing and owning a mobile or manufactured home.

Steps to Buying Your First Mobile Home

As a first-time mobile home buyer, there are several crucial steps you need to take to ensure that you make a sound investment and find the perfect mobile home to fit your needs. Here’s a comprehensive list to guide you through the process:

Determine your budget

Start by assessing your financial situation. Look at your savings, income, and current debt to figure out how much you can realistically afford. Remember, the price of a mobile home doesn’t just include the sticker price; there are additional costs such as:

  • Lot rent (if you’re placing it in a mobile home park)
  • Utilities connections (water, electricity, sewer)
  • Insurance coverage
  • Transportation and installation costs (for new homes)
  • Any necessary upgrades or renovations (for used homes)

Creating a thorough budget will help you avoid any unhappy financial surprises down the road.

Choose between new or used mobile homes

Both new and used mobile homes have their pros and cons. A new home will likely come with the latest amenities and design features but at a higher cost. On the other hand, a used mobile home might afford you significant savings but may require immediate maintenance or remodeling. It’s essential to consider the long-term value and costs associated with each option.

Decide on location

Choosing where your mobile home will reside is as crucial as selecting the home itself. You have two primary options:

  • Mobile Home Parks: Living in a park typically involves paying a monthly lot rent but often comes with benefits like community amenities, established utilities, and sometimes included maintenance services.
  • Private Land: If you wish to place your mobile home on private land, you need to ensure that zoning laws permit it. You may also need to invest in infrastructure such as septic systems, wells, or utility connections.

Research and compare manufacturers

Once you’ve got your budget sorted and know where you want your mobile home to be located, it’s time to start looking at different manufacturers. Researching their reputations, warranty offers, and customer reviews can provide valuable insight. Visiting different model homes can also help you get a feel for the variability in design and quality.

Customize your home

Many mobile home manufacturers offer customization options for floor plans and design elements such as cabinetry, wall coverings, and flooring. This is your opportunity to tailor your new space to your personal needs and style preferences.

Arrange financing

Financing a mobile or manufactured home can differ from standard home loans due to their classification as personal property rather than real estate in some cases. Investigate different financing options suitable for mobile homes and work with lenders who specialize in this area.

Inspect the home

Whether you’re buying new or used, it’s essential to conduct a thorough inspection. For new homes, check for any construction issues. For used ones, look for signs of wear and necessary repairs.

Closing the deal and moving in

The closing process for a mobile home is similar to that of a traditional home, involving various paperwork and legal documents. Once everything is signed, it’s time to prepare for moving day! Plan for the delivery and setup of your new mobile home if buying new, or coordinate moving in if the home is already sited.

Financing Options for First-Time Mobile Home Buyers

Securing financing is one of the most important aspects of purchasing a mobile home. Understanding the different types of loans available is vital for choosing an option that best suits your situation:

Traditional mortgages

If you’re buying a mobile home along with the land it sits on, it may be classified as real property, making you eligible for a traditional mortgage.

FHA loans

FHA loans can be an excellent option for those with less-than-perfect credit or limited funds for a down payment. The Federal Housing Administration insures these loans, which can be used for both the home itself and the lot it sits on.

VA loans for veterans

If you’re a veteran or currently serving in the military, a VA loan could be an option. These loans generally offer favorable terms, sometimes including no down payment requirements.

Chattel loans

If you’re not purchasing land or don’t plan to permanently affix your mobile home to land you own, a chattel loan — essentially a personal property loan — might be the way to go.

Personal loans

For lower-cost or used mobile homes, personal loans might be sufficient. These loans are typically unsecured and based on creditworthiness.

Manufacturer financing

Some manufacturers offer their own financing for their homes, which can simplify the buying process. Be sure to compare these rates with those of traditional and non-traditional lenders.

When considering financing options:

  1. Understand all associated fees and interest rates.
  2. Check whether the loan covers just the mobile home or both the home and land.
  3. Consider the loan term length that works best for your budget.
  4. Research if there are any prepayment penalties.
  5. Prepare a significant down payment to reduce monthly payments.

Navigating through these financing pathways will require patience and careful consideration. However, understanding these options will advance your journey toward owning your first mobile home with confidence. Remember, each financing choice comes with its set of benefits and limitations; choose one that aligns with your financial standing and long-term homeownership goals.

Mobile Home Parks vs. Private Land

Deciding between settling in a mobile home park or on private land is a crucial choice for first-time mobile home buyers. Each has its pros and cons, and the right decision hinges on your personal lifestyle preferences, financial situation, and long-term goals. Let’s compare both options:

Pros and cons of mobile-home parks

Mobile home parks offer a community environment, often complete with amenities like pools, playgrounds, and community centers. Living in a park can also simplify the ownership process as the park management typically maintains common areas and provides utilities.

Pros:

  • Community amenities
  • Social environment with close neighbors
  • Centralized maintenance and services

Cons:

  • Monthly lot rent costs
  • Possible restrictions on pets, rentals, and exterior modifications
  • Potential for park closures or sale of the land

Advantages and challenges of private land

Owning private land for your mobile home gives you more control over your property. You can landscape, expand, and modify your home as you see fit. However, there could be additional hurdles like zoning restrictions and higher upfront costs for establishing utilities.

Pros:

  • Complete control over your land and home
  • Privacy from neighbors
  • Flexibility to customize, expand, or build additional structures

Cons:

  • Potentially significant costs for land purchase and developing utilities
  • Need to comply with local zoning laws
  • Responsibility for all maintenance and security

Weighing the pros and cons of each option is essential before making a final decision. It’s vital to consider not just the present lifestyle you wish to have but also what you aim for in the future.

Maintaining Your Mobile Home

Owning a mobile home doesn’t mean you can forget about maintenance. Proper care will ensure that your home remains a comfortable, safe place to live for many years. Here are some maintenance tips to keep your mobile home in tip-top shape:

Regular Maintenance Tasks

These include general upkeep such as cleaning the gutters, checking for leaks, and ensuring that your home is level. Regular checks can prevent small problems from becoming more significant issues.

Weatherproofing and Insulation

To minimize energy costs and protect against weather damage, make sure your mobile home is properly weatherproofed and insulated. This can include sealing windows and doors, insulating pipes, and checking the roof’s condition regularly.

Skirting and Foundation Care

Skirting provides a barrier between the underside of your mobile home and the outside environment. It can help with insulation and protect against pests. Ensure the skirting is intact without gaps or damage. Also, monitor the condition of your home’s foundation or supports to prevent settling or instability.

Plumbing and Electrical Considerations

Just like in a traditional house, you should routinely check the plumbing for leaks or blockages and ensure that electrical connections are safe. It’s also essential to know where your main water shut-off valve is located in case of emergency.

Importance of Proper Ventilation

Mobile homes need good ventilation to manage moisture levels and maintain healthy air quality. Use exhaust fans regularly, especially in kitchens and bathrooms, and consider installing vents or an HVAC system if one is not already present.

As a home buyer, understanding that your mobile home requires regular maintenance is paramount. Treat it like any other property you might invest in: with care, attention, and a proactive stance on maintenance to preserve its value over time.

By engaging in regular upkeep practices and addressing issues promptly, you stand the best chance of enjoying a well-maintained mobile home that’s both a joy to live in and an asset that holds its value over time.

Common Misconceptions About Mobile Homes

There are numerous misconceptions about mobile homes that can deter potential buyers from considering them as a viable option for their first home purchase. Let’s debunk some of these myths to better understand the reality of mobile home living.

Safety concerns

A prevalent myth is that mobile homes are not as safe as traditional site-built homes, particularly in severe weather. However, modern manufactured homes adhere to the stringent federal HUD Code requirements, which include specific standards for wind safety and construction, making them much safer than their predecessors.

Depreciation myths

Another common belief is that mobile homes inevitably depreciate like cars. While this can be true for older models, today’s manufactured homes can maintain or even increase in value, especially if they are well-maintained, located on private land, or placed in a desirable community.

Quality and durability misconceptions

Some people mistakenly assume that mobile homes are poorly built and don’t last. On the contrary, the construction process for manufactured homes often happens in controlled environments, which can lead to higher quality control standards than traditional construction sites. Additionally, with proper care, a mobile home can be just as durable as a site-built house.

Lifestyle stereotypes

The stereotype that mobile homes are only for those with lower incomes is outdated. Mobile homes offer a range of amenities and can be found in various upscale designs that cater to different lifestyles and preferences. They are an attractive choice for anyone who values affordability and efficiency regardless of income level.

Mobile home living is evolving, with trends pointing towards more sustainable, efficient, and technologically-advanced living options. Here’s a glimpse into what the future may hold:

Technological advancements

Smart home technology that was once only seen in high-end housing is making its way into mobile homes. Features like smart thermostats, security systems, and energy-efficient appliances are becoming the norm, providing both convenience and cost savings.

Eco-friendly and sustainable options

As environmental awareness increases, so does the demand for sustainable living. Expect to see more energy-efficient and environmentally friendly materials used in the construction of mobile homes, as well as options for solar panel installations and rainwater collection systems.

Changing perceptions and growing popularity

The perception of mobile homes is shifting as more people recognize their benefits and modern appeal. The affordability and flexibility they offer make them an increasingly popular choice, particularly among millennials, downsizers, and eco-conscious individuals.

As we look to the future, these evolving trends indicate that mobile home living will become an even more attractive and mainstream housing option. For the first-time mobile home buyer, keeping an eye on these developments ensures that their purchase aligns with not only their current needs but also with future possibilities in mobile home living. It’s clear that this type of home is not just a stepping stone but can also be a long-term residence that fulficates growing needs for affordability, sustainability, and modern comforts.

Conclusion

For those interested in exploring the options available in Florida, consider reaching out to a reputable Mobile Home And Manufactured Home Brokerage In Florida like Integrity Mobile Homes, which specializes in connecting buyers with their ideal mobile or manufactured home. Whether you’re buying or selling, they deliver professional service you deserve. Embrace the potential that mobile homes offer and discover why more first-time buyers are turning to this promising avenue for their housing needs. Remember, when it comes to purchasing your first home, there’s no one-size-fits-all approach. Evaluate your personal needs, conduct thorough research, and don’t hesitate to seek professional advice when needed. With careful planning and informed decision-making, your first mobile home can be a joyful and fulfilling investment for years to come.

A Quick and Useful Guide to Mobile Home Plumbing

The Story

Buying a mobile home is, in many ways, different than your regular real estate purchase. One of the vital aspects to inspect is mobile home plumbing, as understanding this part of the home can help you save a lot of money. 

What Should I Look for in My Mobile Home’s Plumbing?

To be able to dive into little details of mobile home plumbing, it is crucial to understand the basics. These will include piping materials, the location of the pipes, venting procedures, and the most common plumbing issues found in mobile homes. 

Awesome! Where Do I Start?

You can learn more about mobile home plumbing by heading to the MHVillager below.

Top 8 Celebrities who Surprisingly own a humble Mobile Home!

Mobile Homes aren’t for Everyone, oh wait, they are!

We often look to celebrities for inspiration. They set the standard to which we tend to judge our lives and level of success. We also just like a good bit of gossip from time to time because it’s entertaining. Celebrities draw our attention whether there’s a scandal, breaking news, or just something that goes completely against our preconceptions.

The super famous and ultra wealthy live in mobile homes? What? Why? It’s true! There’s a myriad of reasons behind each of these 8 famous people’s decisions to live in a mobile home. Sit back and read about why those at the top choose to live in a humble home.

Celebrity 1 – Kid Rock

Kid Rock, famous musician, is a celebrity that lives in a mobile home.

Kid Rock starts out our list of celebrities as the man most at-home in a mobile home. Kid Rock is known as an outgoing, in-your-face personality and he embraces things that allow him to live how he wants to live. This isn’t a choice made out of financial necessity as he’s worth $80 million. Instead, the reason he lives in a mobile home is that it suits his needs best when he’s not on tour. He finds a mobile home to be the most practical option for him, in the same way he considers his private jet a necessity.

“I live in a double-wide trailer. It’s not like I require a lot. You know, I’ve learned to downsize through the years and it really made me more happy. I’ll sell everything and live in that double-wide but I’m not givin’ up that airplane”

Taken from an interview with Dan Rather

According to Kid Rock, the things that make him happy in life are never going to be found in a house or mansion. The number of bedrooms, the size of a pool, and even mansion-tier accessories like a movie theater mean nothing if you’re the only one using them. Instead, he finds that the things which make him happy are his land and his flexibility. With a mobile home he was able to find a piece of land perfect for him and instantly start living his best life.

Source: CountryMusicFamily

Mobile Home Resident No. 2 – Pamela Anderson

Pamela Anderson is a celebrity who lived in a mobile home.

Pamela Anderson is no stranger to living in a mobile home. Unlike Kid Rock, Pamela chose mobile home living as an interim solution while she got some affairs in order. Pamela was apparently bad at paying her bills (how? I have no idea) and she got in trouble with the taxman.

Pamela lived in a mansion before moving to the luxury Malibu mobile home park of Paradise Cove. She had extensive work done to the mansion and ended up with a $674,000 lien due to unpaid contractor fees. She failed to pay taxes in addition to this, the figure of $1.7 million was mentioned.

Pamela had to downsize and play it safe for a while. That meant moving to a lower cost abode and living like us common folk for a while. Pamela embraced a down-to-Earth lifestyle and even started dating an electrician who also lived in the park.

Of course, this is Pamela Anderson and you probably know she’s not known as the quaint lady with a happy, unassuming relationship and small home. She ended up selling her mobile home, renting out the mansion, and moving to France to be with the French footballer Adil Rami.

Her life was what many would consider picturesque in that mobile home park. Unlike the reported nature of her other relationships (including with the first person on this list – Kid Rock), her time with the electrician was legitimately romantic. Her kids were even the same age as those of the electrician. How did this man come to meet this superstar? He picked her up in his golf cart! Yes, for a time she even indulged in the park cultural phenomenon of golf cart travel after being introduced to the convenience by that fateful ride.

Source: The Things

Celebrity 3 – Matthew McConaughey

Matthew McConaughey is in the top, elite few among celebrities. He also lived in an airstream in a mobile home park.

We’re back to diehard mobile home residents with this superstar! Matthew McConaughey is a household name and celebrity of the highest caliber. He was also a mobile home resident full-time between 2004 and 2008, living in an Airstream trailer. You read that right, he didn’t even have the luxuries of a proper mobile home as he was actually living in a trailer – for four years!

According to Architectural Digest, McConaughey’s Airstream was used for everything from parties to conducting business. The actor lived in it full time from ’04 to ’08 in a Malibu RV park next to a world-famous surfing spot. Ever since then he has used the Airstream as his primary residence on the road. Like many Americans, McConaughey embraces the freedom and flexibility that a brick and mortar home just can’t offer. Also, just like with Kid Rock, the Airstream more than met McConaughey’s needs. If he wanted to go to a crazy Hollywood party he’d probably let someone else deal with the mess and property damage.

Source: Architectural Digest

TV Superstar and Number 4 – NIA PEEPLES

Nia Peeples, best known for her role in Pretty Little Liars, lives in a double-wide mobile home. You absolutely need to watch the video your of Nia’s home in Malibu. Not only does her home rock, it will hopefully give you ideas and show you what can be done in your mobile home. What if you don’t know anything about mobile homes? Well, this is one! This isn’t even anything fancy, the layout and structure are exactly the same as what you’ll find in any park. Nia gives a perfect glimpse into the ideal mobile home lifestyle and what we can all achieve with a little creativity and dedication.

Source: The attached video! Watch it and you won’t regret it.


  • The Ultimate Guide for First-Time Mobile Home Buyers: Everything You Need to Know

  • A Quick and Useful Guide to Mobile Home Plumbing

  • Top 8 Celebrities who Surprisingly own a humble Mobile Home!

5 – Tom Shadyac

Tom Shadyac is an accomplished director and has downsized his life to be happier. He's now a celebrity living in a mobile home.

Tom Shadyac is a well established director with pictures under his belt including Patch Adams, The Nutty Professor, Ace Ventura: Pet Detective, and Bruce Almighty. He made it big in the industry and for a number of years he lived like it. Tom had a big, multimillion dollar mansion and everything else one gets when the cash comes flowing in.

Why He Downscaled Despite Celebrity Status

You see, back in 2007 Tom had a bike accident the left him in excruciating pain for months. He found himself standing in his giant mansion in pain and no happier than he was before he was rich. Living life as a stereotypical celebrity was leaving Tom feeling empty. To him, all the normal measures of success were just cultural constructs that have no real value. A mansion is just a big, empty void that sucks the life out of you.

A decade ago Tom had an existential awakening that made him realize what he wanted out of life. Instead of living in a community of closed-off mansions where everyone is standoffish and competitive, he wanted to be part of a community. He said that the culture of measuring our self worth from what material things we have is awful.

“We have a term for something in the body when it takes more than its share,” “We call it cancer.”

From the documentary I Am

This director of multiple critically-acclaimed movies decided his best life was in a mobile home. Tom Shadyac believes that being a celebrity should be about celebrating talent. According to him, the problem is when people are put on a pedestal they get in the way of their “authentic selves.” To save his integrity and mental state a mobile home was the only option. Tom also rides to work on a bike and spends his days pursuing his passions and not cultural status symbols.

Source: Oprah Interview

Celebrity 6 – David Arquette

David Arquette, celebrity recently sold his mobile home for over a million dollars

David is an established and the former husband of Friends star Courtney Cox. From around 2012 to 2017 he was also a mobile home resident, living (as with many of the people on this list) in a Malibu mobile home park. David’s home is a doublewide with an open layout, industrial style exterior, and a 1.8 million dollar price tag.

So many celebrities choose to live in a mobile home because they meet their needs perfectly. Celebrities share a lot with retired people due to constant activities, having a fluid schedule, and often only needing to live with their partner or nobody else at all. A mobile home is also small enough that it feels like a home but still offers the freedom not afforded by an apartment. You can turn a mobile home into a personalized haven in a way that would be impractical and excessive with anything else.

Source: Architectural Digest

Famous Billionaire and Number 7 – Elon Musk

Elon Musk, second richest person alive, is a celebrity who lives in a mobile home.

Elon Musk, love him or hate him you have to admit he has a peculiar way of doing things. Elon’s futurism is sometimes misguided but we think he hit the nail on the head with his house. The tech billionaire and rocket magnate lives in a $50k tiny, prefabricated home in Texas.

The home he now reportedly lives in is a 375 square foot prefabricated home made by Las Vegas startup Boxabl. Their homes boast high 9’6″ ceilings, full-sized kitchen with all appliances included, large bathroom amenities, a washer and dryer, climate control included, and full LED lighting. These homes are definitely plug-and-play because you literally only need the land and water/power hookup. More impressively, these homes are designed with industry-leading insulation and other power saving features. There’s also a two-storey model!

If you want to live like a billionaire it’s only $250 per month. You can exceed Elon’s lifestyle because you have the opportunity to move into a resort lifestyle community. Imagine the chic lifestyle of a billionaire and the amenities of a resort. This author knows what they’re doing when they retire!

Source: Business Insider

Celebrity 8 – Minnie Driver

Minnie Driver is a celebrity with a Malibu mobile home retreat.

You might know Minnie Driver from Grosse Pointe Blank or Good Will Hunting but did you know this singer and actress lives in a mobile home? Minnie is yet another celebrity on this list that lives in Malibu on the more humble side of things. She bought her home by the beach over twenty years ago. After years of living in a normal mobile home Minnie decided to upgrade her house. She went to interior designer One Kings Lane for help and it really paid off!

This London-born academy award nominee chooses to spend her free time in a home not too far off from what you can have, even after the New York designer’s overhaul. This article from One Kings Lane documents the remodeled state of Minnie’s home and offers some inspiration.

We don’t want to say the New York decorator didn’t do an impressive job – they did – but we will say you can attain this look on a tight budget. Open floorplans seem to be here to stay; aside from the removal of maybe a wall or two all you need is light colored paint and some finds from a local thrift shop. You can achieve that Malibu look on a retirement budget and afford to life like you’re in Malibu too! After all, the sunshine is free in Florida.

Source: One Kings Lane

Want to See our Sources?

We couldn’t have made this list without the help of some other wonderful sites. If you want to see what they had to say about celebrities living in mobile homes then give them a visit.

House Beautiful, MH Living News, and US Mobile Home Pros

Secure Your Home this Summer While Away

Here’s Some Things You Need to Know Before Going Away

Here are some essential considerations to keep in mind this summer if you’re heading north or going on vacation:

Have Someone Looking Out For You

Extended stays away from home are easier and safer than ever when you live in a mobile home park. These parks are communities where it’s not uncommon for a sizable amount of people to go north for the summer. Also, they are real communities where people build friendships and look out for each other. The number-one thing to do is tell family and close friends about your trip.

Find someone you trust that lives in Florida year-round to look after your property. This doesn’t entail they live in your home or take up a sentry position, they just need to know that if they notice any changes that they should call you.

Landscaping is Important!

Seedy types look for homes that they know are empty, so make sure your property doesn’t look abandoned. The most recommended thing to do is hire a trusted (i.e. an established company) landscaping service to do regular maintenance on your home. A professional landscaper’s presence both serves to keep things looking kept up as well as maintain a level of activity while you’re away.

We know that the landscaping option isn’t available for everybody, whether due to cost or just not having time to set it up. Don’t worry, you can do an overly-enthusiastic trim before you go so things look only slightly overgrown when you come back. Your property might not look as good as the community clubhouse, but it also will be far from the worst when fall comes around.

Make Sure Nothing Builds Up on the Porch

Newspapers, pamphlets, and even forgotten late-night Amazon purchases all tell a person of dubious character one thing, and it’s not that you don’t care about your mail. Make sure you cancel your subscriptions while gone so newspapers don’t build up and your mailbox isn’t packed.

If you want to go a step above, ask that kind soul that’s looking out for your home to go over once in a while to pick up loose promotional detritus. You could also ask your landscaper if they’ll clean up this material in the event you have one.

Run Lights on Timers and Sensors

Hopefully you’re familiar with running lights on wall-mounted timers. If not, the idea is straightforward: a little outlet-mounted timer is plugged into your lamps and turns on and back off at pre-specified times. These timers can be purchased very affordably at Walmart and any reputable hardware store; one lamp per larger, windowed room should do the trick.

Motion detectors on outdoor lights are a must-have in our opinion. You might have discounted the idea because they’re generally expensive or finicky, but now you can buy an LED security light kit for under $40! These kits are relatively easy to put up and draw attention to your home whenever something is snooping around. More often than not you spook stray critters, but that’s not exactly a bad thing either.

Make Sure your Air Conditioner is Working

While it’s tempting to turn everything off and not pay a dime to the power company, it’s best for your home that you have the AC running (plus you want those lights mentioned above). An air conditioner does a lot more than cool a home, it also filters the air and removes moisture. It would be senseless to keep your home comfortably cool the entire time you’re away. It is paramount that your thermostat is set somewhere in the mid-80s so the system kicks on while away.

Storms Still Happen While You’re Away

Florida is the thunderstorm capitol of the US and it’s not uncommon for surges to trip breakers and take out unprotected devices. It’s best practice to unplug everything not in use. Doing this drastically lowers the chance of electrical fire and, more likely, something wasting expensive electricity. Unplug your TVs, computers, and appliances and keep rechargeable devices off their chargers. Also, back up your data as a precaution.

Clean out Fridges and Freezers

Power goes out occasionally, and more occasionally it can be out for a long time. Would you rather have to buy a few groceries when you return or have to kill the monster that’s grown out of your forgotten leftovers marinating in a warm fridge? I think you can agree it’s best to toss the half-used mayo.

Modern appliances are as sensitive to power surges as computers. Having your fridge or even freezer unplugged and cleaned-out will protect them for years to come.

Keep Your Valuables Safe

Having a safe deposit box for jewelry and other precious objects is recommended. While you cherish your family photos and keepsakes, criminals only want what they can pawn. It’s likely you’ll find that you don’t need a big deposit box to protect your stuff. Plus, not having such things in your home can act as a deterrent.

Inspect Everything

Lock all your doors and windows before you go and double-check them. Test all the locks and replace broken ones. Make sure your things like sheds and outdoor storage containers have locks on them too.

If you have further questions or want recommendations for the Bradenton/Sarasota area, feel free to contact us here.

Home Market Chance of a Lifetime

Sell Now: The Chance of a Decade

Your Home May Be Worth More Than You Think

Are You Thinking of Selling?

Does this scenario seem familiar: you check your home’s value and see it’s worth 50% or more than it was just a few years ago – you’d love to sell but there’s nothing on the market left for you? The housing market has been in a stir this past year and prices have rocketed. Now is the best time possible to sell your home but you simply can’t go homeless! The solution is simple – expand your search and consider better alternatives.

If you’re one of the 3.2 million Americans who’ve recently retired (CNBC, 2021) or are looking to retire then it’s likely that the time has come to downsize. Most people have found themselves over the course of their working lives in places that aren’t ideal retirement spots. Now it’s time for a fresh wave of people to take up professions and move into our cities and suburbs and housing prices reflect it.

Maybe you’ve considered moving to a more retirement-centered locale or perhaps the idea is new to you. Either way, moving can offer you a better quality of life and the profit from that home sale can really grow your retirement nest egg. If you’re close to meeting your retirement goals but aren’t there yet, the sale of your home might propel you financially years ahead – years you get to enjoy doing what you love.

Let’s Look at the Numbers

According to Business Insider the average home value in the US has jumped up 14.9% in the last year, marking the 114th month in a row that values have increased. The pandemic has thrown gasoline on this fire as homes have been in short supply, resulting in increased prices. A sign that the market is as competitive as ever is the declining number of first-time buyers, who over the last two months have decreased from 33% of the market last year to under 29% now. Simply put, first-time buyers can’t keep up and there is a housing shortage.

This is Where YOU Come In

It’s safe to assume that you are an older, well-established person since you’ve made it to this part of the internet. As a mature, financially savvy person you must see the opportunity in front of you – sell now for a return 50% or greater than you could have ever predicted. You can put it away, increase your monthly payout, put it into a hot new company, or buy that dream boat and go fishing every day. The only thing holding you back is your resolve and having a place lined up.

This is Where WE Come In

Do you know what market is still untapped by this housing boom? Mobile Homes always follow market trends a little later than their counterparts in the suburbs. The largest demographic of mobile homeowners is impervious to market fluctuations so when prices are high mobile home creep up. However, when markets inevitably flounder mobile homes hold stronger than ever because very few owners are liable to loose their source of income, you know, being retired.

Here’s the Plan:

You should do some market research on your home. Look at comparable homes in your area and talk to a realtor to see what you can do to make the most of this market boom. Before even putting the home on the market look into the fabulous resort lifestyle parks in Florida. Brand new mobile homes are half the price of their traditional counterparts and are in modernized, company-run parks that offer amenities equivalent to a resort – read more here! Contact us here to start your hunt for a mobile home so when it’s time to sell there’s a plan and a destination.

Where Our Data is From:

Hartmans, A. (2021, September 25). The housing market is cooling down but not for a good reason: first-time homebuyers have been priced out. Retrieved from Business Insider: https://www.businessinsider.com/housing-market-softening-home-prices-unaffordable-realtors-association-report-2021-9

Kate Dore, C. (2021, May 9). The pandemic drove these Americans into early retirement. What to know before making the leap. Retrieved from CNBC: https://www.cnbc.com/2021/05/09/the-pandemic-drove-these-americans-into-early-retirement.html

Will Your Home Hold its Value?

Conventional Wisdom is Wrong on This One.

The old status quo of mobile homes losing value over time is no longer the case – here’s why.

In days gone by it was expected that a mobile home was a tradeoff of long-term returns for an obtainable retirement. No longer are the days of 1960s trailers lined up in some desolate lot off a highway! The modern mobile home has finally caught up with its brick-and-mortar counterpart in ability to appreciate in value.

According to the Urban Institute, a D.C.-based think tank, manufactured homes have appreciated an average of 3.4% compared to traditional homes at 3.8%. However, while the appreciation rated have close-in on each other, the number of new mobile homes has declined since the 70s. That’s actually a good thing.

The Market Meeting Demands

Hopefully we’re all acquainted with supply and demand and how they affect pricing. If you’re unfamiliar or want to brush up on this economics basic then go here.

The supply of new mobile homes has dropped annually from the late-seventies to the present day. While that initially seems like bad news, it’s good because it shows the market maturing. Manufactured homes are built better than in the past and thus cost more. Plus, the average buyer now demands a lot more of a mobile home park. Simply, the product has changed from a lower-quality alternative to one on-par. All the while, regular homes are just made more cheaply. If you want to know more about this, read here.

The increase in price has lowered low-income demand which has in-turn gentrified the market. The 55+ community of the modern age is made up of mostly middle-class people from northern climates, retired people who’ve downsized, and working people established in their career.

The lowered supply has had another benefit of bringing supply an demand into a sustainable equilibrium. Nowadays, the prohibitive cost of a new mobile home means buyers are looking at ones already on-site. This, coupled with superb build quality in the last few decades, has meant buyers are more confidant than ever.

The Old Woes are No Longer a Problem – or Never Were in the First Place…

Bad Weather isn’t That Bad Anymore

If you’ve been around long enough the name Hurricane Andrew might stand out. This 1992 hurricane battered Florida among other places and leveled a lot of homes – both mobile and traditional. In response, the State of Florida enacted numerous new building codes that culminated in Florida having the strictest codes by 2002. These codes apply to mobile homes too, and the industry stepped up.

You can read here about how codes have improved home safety, but rest assured knowing that by hurricane Irma in 2017 most mobile homes received minimal or no damage. The codes have worked and a modern mobile home is as sound as ever.

Rent’s Due!

Another woe of mobile homes tossed up by the uninitiated is lot rent. Many homes are situated in parks that own the land and charge a monthly rent for land, utilities, park services, clubhouse membership, etc. What the pop journalists of the internet don’t realize is that lot rent works for you in the long run.

Mobile home parks are competitive… very competitive. They know that if you want to, you can sell your home and buy a new one fast. If you want to move to a different park it’s likely you will, losing your old park a revenue stream to a more affordable one. Hey, this sounds like economic competition!

Indeed, mobile home parks compete with each other to offer the most amenities at the best price, and since you’re living there they can’t cut corners like certain retailers nowadays. Lot rent is always going to be manageable because the 55+ market has a large group of fixed-income individuals. You can’t turn away retirees and run a mobile home park, can you?

Wait, Rent is Behind That Home Appreciation?

The value of your home is positively affected by your community having a rent. Rent directly goes into maintaining your community and adds a barrier of entry to certain uncouth types. Those that don’t have their stuff sorted out, even after 55+ years on this earth, won’t be your neighbor.

The well-managed and well-invested-in communities that charge a lot rent preserve the quality of the environment your home exists in. When future buyers go by your home to check it out, they’ll see manicured landscaping and clean homes and think that’s the place they want to be. As long as you can keep the home together, you won’t be dissatisfied in the long run.

High-Value Communities Around Here

The Florida Gulf Coast down near sunny Sarasota has the best mobile home communities in the nation. The competitive nature of the area combined with a long established presence of the mobile home community means prices are low and quality is high. We’ve hand-picked the communities below for their exceptional resort amenities at a bargain rate. You’re sure to be excited by the value in these parks!