Saving Even More On Modular Homes
December 7, 2008Youve done your homework. Youve explored all your options and weighed them against your budget. Theres no better way for you to have the home of your dreams and keep your costs down at the same time than to have a modular home built and transported to your property.
This is an excellent choice indeed! Modular homes provide potential owners with an incredible opportunity to enjoy high-quality construction with very reasonable pricing. The question that might be nagging at the back of your mind, however, is if its possible to make this already lower-cost building option even more affordable?
The answer is a big yes if you know how to buy and what expenses you can reasonably reduce or cut out of the equation entirely.
Modular home construction does present some challenges for finding money-saving options, but if you work with your builder, you can keep your costs low and your quality high.
The Modular Home Difference
Modular homes are a little different than standard site- or stick-built homes. Unlike traditional construction, a modular home is built almost entirely within a controlled environment. When the building phase is nearly complete, your home is put on a truck (in pieces) and delivered to your door for final assembly. Construction meets or exceeds (or should) all local building codes, so concerns about this are alleviated.
The modular home difference brings with it some inherent cost savings over stick built properties. It does, however, cut out a lot of opportunities for you, as the property owner, to cut corners by doing work yourself. Dont worry though there are still some tricks for shaving dollars from the bottom line.
The Inherent Money Savings
Modular homes do deliver a lot of potential savings right off the bat over traditional construction methods. The reason why these homes are more affordable than site-built properties is not found in a lack of quality either. Its all in the design of how construction takes place. The inherent savings are found in:
The stock designs Most companies that create modular homes operate off a few set plans. This means the same blueprints are recycled over and over again.
The assembly line Modular homes are built with attention to detail, but they are constructed by crews that know the models inside out and backwards. The assembly line fashion in which they are built can save you, the homeowner, money.
The controlled environment Modular homes are often built under very sheltered conditions. This means common construction delays, such as weather concerns, are virtually removed from the equation.
The bulk buying Companies that specialize in modular home construction tend to order their materials in bulk. This saves them, and potentially you, money on materials.
Modular homes, by design, are less expensive to build than homes constructed on site. This doesnt mean that you cant save even more by taking a step back and examining some options.
Selecting The Right Builder Matters
Modular home construction companies are not all alike. Since your home will be largely built out of your own line of view, it is imperative that you select a good company not only for pricing and plans, but also quality. To ensure you make a sound selection, consider these things:
Reputation and experience Some companies have been building modular homes for years and years with very few complaints. These companies might charge a little more than others, but the peace of mind can be worthwhile.
Plans and freedoms offered If you want the home of your dreams built, it doesnt pay to select a company that isnt at least a little flexible on the plans. Chances are you will want a few changes made. A good company can accommodate without charging you a ton in the process.
Localized licensing Make sure the builder is truly licensed to work in your area. A company should have authorization in your state.
Take the time to review the options of building companies closely. Obtain multiple quotes, look into background, licensing and customer reports before making a final selection. It might be that a slightly more expensive builder ranks higher. This is okay. You can save money elsewhere on the project. It doesnt pay to put quality on the line in favor of saving a few bucks during the production phase.
Work With Your Builder
Just because a modular home construction company will handle most of the building work in a controlled environment, doesnt mean you cant get in on the act to save yourself money. Chances are a few pieces of the puzzle will involve optional charges the builder can handle for you or not. These are your opportunities for potential price savings.
If at all possible, compare your builders pricing versus what you can get by hiring a different contractor or doing the work yourself on such things as:
Site preparation Land clearing, slab pouring, plumbing and electrical work will still need to be done onsite. If you can tackle any of these steps personally and meet inspection, you will save yourself money. It might be that you can hire a subcontractor for less than your home builder will charge. You wont know if you dont check these things out!
Finishing touches If you work with your builder, you might be able to save yourself some money on the actual finishing touches for your home. Painting, floor laying, tile work and other end-phase pieces of construction might be things your builder would be willing to take out of the equation so you can do them yourself. Some builders, however, may not allow this, but it doesnt hurt to check if you have the ability to perform the work personally.
Appliances If your chosen builder cannot cut pieces out of the puzzle for you to tackle personally, you can still save money on the process of turning your house into a real home. Take on the appliance purchases personally and you will likely save yourself a fair amount of money. To enjoy the best savings, shop around, look for scratch-and-dent items or even recycle your old appliances for maximum cost savings now.
Landscaping This is an excellent end-phase area that homeowners can handle themselves for big money savings. If you have even a slightly green thumb, you can tackle the landscaping around your home once its placed or do your own comparison shopping for the most affordable contractor.
Choosing to build a modular home is a great way to save money right out of the gate. There are often ways to make this already pound-wise venture pay off even more. Take the time to review your options, work with your builder and see where you can have the most impact on the bottom line without impacting the quality of your project.