Manufactured Homes Versus Traditional Homes

Understanding the differences between manufactured homes and traditional homes. What are the pros and cons? Who should consider purchasing a manufactured home and who should purchase a traditional home?

Manufactured Homes Versus Traditional Homes

From originality to efficiency, there are pros and cons to owning a manufactured home versus a traditional home. In this post, we will walk you through what a manufactured home and a traditional home are and then offer factors to consider when deciding what type to purchase.

What is a manufactured home?

A manufactured home is when a portion or all of the building is done off-site or in a factory and then transported to a specific location. Some manufactured homes are transported completely; others are transported in parts. These homes can have a permanent foundation or be atop foundation blocks.

What is a traditional home?

A traditional home is built on-site and has a permanent foundation. 


No matter what type of home you end up in, affordability will always be a factor to consider when purchasing a home. Understanding the differences in costs for owning manufactured homes versus traditional homes will help you determine what type of home is best for you.

Accessibility to lending

Sometimes it can be easier to obtain a loan when purchasing a traditional home. However, there are options for those who are interested in purchasing manufactured homes. According to Forbes, traditional mortgage loans can be used if the manufactured home is at least 400 square feet, attached to a permanent foundation, and has all the necessary features for living. Otherwise, Fannie Mae offers a loan option called the MH Advantage program, Freddie Mac offers the CHOICE HOME program, and government loans are possible for veterans. There are other financial options available, so make sure to take our course on manufactured housing home buying to learn more.

Ability to choose your size/type

A nice thing about manufactured homes is that you can choose the size, type, and features that accommodate your budget. 

Separate purchasing of land

Most of the time, purchasing separate land for your manufactured home is a requirement. Make sure to do due diligence on the costs and requirements of purchasing land. Traditional homes are built onsite, so the land price is considered when creating the listing price.


There are obvious differences between manufactured homes and traditional homes that can affect their overall livability. Livability means the ease of living in a home, from how the home accommodates your everyday needs to the atmosphere it creates around you.

Opportunity to customize

A perk of purchasing a manufactured home is that you have the opportunity to customize the house. You can decide how large you want it, how many windows you prefer, whether or not you have hardwood floors or carpet, along with many other details. With traditional homes, however, you get what you get, and any large changes to the house require renovations.


Manufactured homes are typically newly created, so they tend to require less maintenance. Traditional homes, however, have aged with time, and can require more upkeep, like changing HVAC units or repairing the plumbing.


The character of a home is affected by whether it is manufactured or traditional. "Character" refers to unique characteristics that other homes don’t have. From nooks in the attic to the types of windows to the age of the floors, traditional homes can offer a sense of charm and history that manufactured homes do not.

More to consider

There is always more to consider when making home buying decisions. For instance, manufactured homes can be very efficient and quick to turn around. Traditional homes are more likely to have a basement. Understanding the benefits and requirements of purchasing both manufactured and traditional homes can help you make an informed decision about what type of home would suit your needs. Don’t forget to check out our course on purchasing manufactured homes to learn more!


Resources: Bond, C., Tarver, J. Ultimate Guide to Manufactured Homes. Forbes. April, 2021.

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