Manufactured Homes Appreciate as well as Stick-Built Homes
A new report from the Federal Housing Financing Agency (FHFA) just recently published, and that report covered U.S. home prices, including data on manufactured houses for the first time in the history of these public reports. The big take away from the findings of the FHFA is that the numbers point to manufactured homes appreciating at the same levels as site-built homes. Builder Magazine had this to say on the news “Although the new index is still in the experimental stage, prices of the manufactured homes purchased by government-sponsored entities, like Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, perform similarly and suggest the industry may need to reevaluate the previous presumption.” That previous presumption that the quote mentions is the common misconception in the amount a manufactured home appreciates or is inherently inferior to a stick-built regarding value over time.
The truth is, manufactured homes are an excellent option for anyone in the housing market. While no one home is right for any two families, value over time is an equal playing field between these two building types. What will decide how a home appreciates over time is how it is taken care of and added to over time. Why then is it easy for so many to be misinformed and write manufactured homes off as less than traditional builds? It might lie in an underrepresentation that is apparent in the areas that are appreciating the most in the US.
Laurie Goodman, a writer for UrbanWire magazine, had this to say about the topic in her article covering the topic:
Manufactured Housing is also underrepresented in center cities, which have experienced the most rapid home price appreciation, and overrepresented in the outer suburbs and nonmetropolitan areas. There are few manufactured homes in downtown San Francisco or Manhattan.
Manufactured housing is at a disadvantage representationally versus stick-built because of these preconceptions and outdated zoning laws, not because of their quality of living or build. If manufactured homes were more readily available in the same inner-city markets that traditional builders can construct, people would see that location has a lot to do with the perceived superiority. The quality of manufactured homes is just something that isn’t being seen in the areas where the greatest appreciation is apparent. When taking into consideration that the appreciation of manufactured homes, “Were only marginally lower than the rates for site-built homes,” as Goodman reports, accounting for this change in geography shows that the growth in appreciation has kept up with, if not overtaken, stick-built homes.
The FHFA calculates its price indexes using a repeat sales methodology, which notes the change in prices between repeat sales of the same property. Understanding that difference in representation and the fact of how much a manufactured home appreciates and the true similarity in the market is key to not only making the right decision for you and your family but also saving, and ideally even making, some money once you move from your first manufactured home into something more fitting. If you have any more questions, feel free to ask a manufactured home lender for more relevant information about your financial situation.