As a high-quality, lower-cost alternative to site-built homes, manufactured housing could genuinely be the future of housing affordability. Consumers have savings of close to $1,000 a month-- this is a perfect solution for first-time home buyers. So why isn’t this solution more popular? Half of millennials and Gen Z homebuyers are not aware that manufactured housing is a suitable housing option that will not compromise their desired amenities and aesthetics.
To change the market, we need to change the story of manufactured housing. The lingering stigma with the association of trailers and mobile homes is the awareness problem that we face. These beliefs are based on how these homes were built before HUD Code, and the market is not aware of the regulation of construction of manufactured homes. Most still consider manufactured homes as lower quality than site-built options, and many don’t know about the multiple benefits of not worrying about contract jobs, weather delays, and not enough materials.
Younger homebuyers, especially first-time buyers, are the exact consumers that many manufactured homes are built. For the industry to move forward, we should all contribute to changing the perception of manufactured housing. Some ways that certain retailers are maximizing the market is by providing virtual tours, having models with built-in porches, and showcasing popular amenities. Pictures and videos are powerful in the eyes of the consumer, and the retailers that have used these marketing tools have seen an increase in their web traffic.
However, having a great product and price is not always enough. We need to make it accessible to the majority of Americans. With Federal Investors, our in-house financing program, manufactured homes are available for as little as 9% down on a 20-year loan. And by educating and supporting local brands, we can aid in making manufactured homes accessible across the country. With mortgage rates at historic lows, now is the time to show what is possible with manufactured homes.