Identify the User
Some lenders have appraisal standards for manufactured homes that apply in addition to the USPAP Standards. Freddie Mac and FHA-insured loans, for example, are only available for manufactured homes that exceed 400 square feet in size and qualify as real property. This means that the home must be used as a dwelling with permanent foundations.
Is It Permanently Affixed?
Ascertain whether the manufactured home is permanently affixed to its tract of land. The Alabama Real Estate Appraisers Board offers two tests. If the tongue, axle and wheels of the manufactured home are removed and tie downs installed, the home is physically affixed to the land. The second test is intent-based. The homeowner must declare the home as a permanent principle residence by registering locally for property taxes. If the home is affixed to land, it is treated as real property. USPAP appraisal standards apply.
Use the Sales Approach
Complete the appraisal using standard appraisal form URAR 1004. USPAP allows each appraiser to determine which recognized appraisal method to apply. For manufactured homes, the sales approach is a suitable method.
Research the Market
Research the market to obtain the sales prices of similar manufactured homes that have recently sold in your locality. As with all real property, the best data is the most proximate. However, certain lenders recognize that market comparison evidence is scarce in some areas, and will allow an expanded search radius. Average out your comparison evidence to give a baseline value for your manufactured home.
Adjust your baseline value up or down to accommodate your subject property's size and individual features. All modern manufactured homes carry a label confirming that they are built to the Department of Housing and Urban Development's safety standards, so you can assume a similar standard of construction. Use caution when determining your home's measurement. The unit's listed dimensions are shipping measurements, which include bay windows and overhangs. Appraisers assess only the gross living area of heated living spaces within the unit. You can calculate the gross living area from interior plans, or by physical measurement.
What’s the difference between a manufactured and a modular home?
Manufactured home = mobile home
A manufactured home is a mobile home. It’s built on a steel undercarriage or chassis with a hitch and wheels, and can be made of a single unit or transported in several units that are joined together and attached to a foundation at the living site. Manufactured homes don’t need to be built in accordance with the Uniform Building Codes that typical homes or buildings are subject to—instead, they’re subject to the design and safety standards established by the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). In short, a manufactured home is a home built on a movable structure, like a trailer.
Modular home = built in a factory, installed on land
A modular home is constructed like a typical home, but it’s built in a factory instead of on the living site. It’s delivered to the living site on a trailer or flatbed truck—either all in one piece, or divided into panels or sections that are assembled on-site similar to building blocks. A modular home may be single or multi-storied and isn’t subject to HUD standards, but must adhere to Uniform Building Codes like most homes and buildings. In short, a modular home is a typical home, but built in a factory and “installed” on a lot.